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Failure is an Opportunity

Category: General

Failure is painful; failure is embarrassing; and failure is an opportunity. Yes, you read that correctly – failure is an opportunity. An opportunity that is easy to miss because all we really want to do is forget about it and move on.

 

But, when we fail to address and discuss those activities, projects, and events that did not work out well, we miss a strategic opportunity to learn from the experience. Our most spectacular failures, our most painful experiences are wasted if we don’t take the time to talk about them, take them apart piece by piece, figure out why they happened, and look for ways to do things differently in the future.

 

Why don’t we want to talk about our failures?

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Excitement and Momentum

Category: General

Karen,

 

I have an incredible staff. They are bright, ethical, and hard working. My biggest challenge is to keep the excitement up and the momentum rolling. Can you give me some ideas?

 

Amy, PA

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3 Core Strategic Concepts

Category: General

When I was studying to become a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) my strategy was two pronged. First, was to attend a CMA review course with a pre-set itinerary and instructors with whom I could interact. Second, was to create an intensive study schedule that included studying for 20 – 24 hours each week in addition to attending class. In order to accomplish this, I created a strategy where I would work intensely for 45 minutes and follow it by a 15 minute break. This permitted me to stay fresh and focused for 8 – 10 hours at a stretch. This strategy worked well for me and I accomplished my goal of earning my certification and receiving a top score with just six months of preparation.


Here are a few things I learned from this endeavor.

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What I Learned from Cheerleaders

Category: General

Like the majority of students, I had plenty of friends, but I was never part of the “in” group. In my day, the popular group consisted of cheerleaders, football players (who dated the cheerleaders), class president (who was usually a football player), etc. You get my drift. And like most kids, I thought that I would give anything to be popular.

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Rotten Apples

Category: General

I have worked at some pretty rotten places during my career. I like to think that I was there to gather first-hand experience and some wonderful stories on the types of behavior that are exhibited in unhealthy cultures.


One of my favorite stories is about a prior employer who locked up the office supplies. Originally they were kept on a shelf and all employees were empowered to take a pen or a box of staples when they needed them. And then one day, the owner of the company decided that we were going through too many pens. Maintenance workers were brought in to build a secure closet. The executive secretary then moved all of the office supplies into this closet and locked them up. She was the holder of the only key.

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Mom Says

Category: General

“Sit up straight!” How often did your mother say that to you? I know I heard it at least 1,000 times while I was growing up.


Well, it turns out that Mom may have been on to something. A study by Maarten Bos and Amy Cuddy of Harvard Business School discovered that people using small devices like an iPhone were 47% less likely than someone using a desktop computer to get up and try to find out why a researcher had not returned within a specified period of time. In fact, for those who did take action, the length of time that elapsed before taking action lengthened as the size of the device shrank.

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Is that Your Mission or Vision?

Category: General

If you read much business literature at all, it’s easy to become confused about some of the basic building blocks of business. I’m referring specifically to the mission and vision statements.

 

Why are they confusing?

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