Are You Ready To Take Your Leadership Effectiveness To The Next Level? You Can By Applying These 4 Characteristics That Great Leaders Have In Common

As a leader, your attitude is your most important recourse. No matter where you are in your leadership career: experienced, a novice, or working your way there. Your attitude will determine your actions.

The right attitude can be a positive effect multiplier.

The wrong attitude can suck the life out of your people, team, and company.

“Attitude is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, money, circumstances, than failures and success, than what other people think, say, or do. It is more important than appearance, ability, or skill. It will make or break a business, a home, a friendship, an organization.” ~ Charles R. Swindoll

Periodically examining your attitude is essential to the health of your team. Take stock for the following four components:

1. Realize you are responsible for the care of your people

Not your direct reports, not your staff, not your minions. Your people.

Each has unique talents, gifts, aspirations, goals, motivations, communication and learning styles. What will work for one may not work for another.

You’re entrusted to teach them, help them grown, and to evolve into giving their best for the greater good. (Whatever the greater good is from customer experience to creating a life-saving product.)

What are you doing to care for your people?

2. Lead out of eagerness to serve, not obligation

The best leaders are the ones who love to lead. Their idea of leadership is doing, not dictating (see #4). They want to help people get better. They want to make a difference. They want to be the one that removes obstacles for others. They want to be the one that elevates others.

What are you excited to bring to your team in 2020?

3. Be concerned for what you can give, not what you can get

Great leaders do not look at leadership as a necessary evil in advancing in their own career. They do not take a leadership position because it has great perks, but look at the people aspect as a burden.

What new skill, product, plan, project, or perspective can you bring to your team to help them?

4. Lead by example, not force

Shoulder-to-shoulder, arm-in-arm, boots on the ground. Great leaders are there in the thick when things are not great. They are also in the background, boosting their people up when things are wonderful.

They remove obstacles, they listen, they learn, they provide the tools or resource their people need to succeed. They don’t blame, they look to resolve.

They don’t command respect with a do-it-or-else attitude. They earn respect by walking the walk and demonstrating the first three qualities. They motivate with enthusiasm and a sense of purpose, not with threats.

How would your team rate you one this? Can you come up with an example of how you lead by example?

 

We’ve all known a great leader. They are the ones who are the reason you stayed in that crappy job for so long, because you didn’t want to leave them. I’ve had more than one. Mr. Sulllivan, Marty are two of my most favorite leaders who made a huge impact on me.

These concepts apply not only to your people, but to your tasks. How we approach not only our people, but our responsibilities can influence your attitude as a leader and, in turn, your effectiveness.

For me, every once in a while, I have to give myself gentle reminders about eagerness not obligation. Sometimes, when quite busy, details can morph into minutia, which feeds into a mindset of ‘have to’. I remind myself that every piece is important. Without the pebbles in the pea gravel, no foundation can be laid.

As we start this new year, instead of making a New Year’s Resolution, let’s resolve to take a look at our attitude. Is there any room for tweaking to take us from a good to great leader?

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As an award winning, published, triple certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach & Social Media Brand Analyst I do what I love – help amazing professionals get career happy.

 

Click here – Career Polish – to find out more or set up a time for us to have a conversation!

The hardest habit to break to stop having awkward conversations and really connect with people

There is one subconscious habit that wreaks havoc on all communication and connection. It is a double edge sword that we say to friends, colleagues, and even strangers. On one side it gives the receiver a level of uncomfortableness or regret. On the other we completely diminish ourselves or our value.

It was the hardest thing I had to learn to stop doing – and I still struggle with it today.

The way to stop doing this is simple, but not easy. It is something that you have to make a conscious decision every single time to do.

 

THE TASK: learning how to take a compliment.

THE PROBLEM: contradicting the compliment you were given. 

THE SOLUTION: learning to say “Thank you” without a trailer.

 

Let’s look at a couple of examples.

For me, it started innocently enough. Someone would compliment my shoes (I have a things for shoes).

Instead of saying thank you, I would say something like, “Oh thanks, I’ve had these for years” or “Oh thank you, I got them on sale…”

Ugh. Nothing like basically saying, “Hey, thanks for the compliment, but these (and by extension me) aren’t worth it.”

Here’s another example. Say I worked really hard on a project and my boss told me I did a great job.

My old natural reaction would be something like, “Thanks, it was nothing” Well, that’s a lie, I put a lot of work into that.

Or maybe I would say, “Thanks, hopefully it will make a difference.” Awesome, how about I completely undermine the effort and belief I have in my work and its impact?

My best friend and I made a pact to help each other stop this terrible, self-depreciating habit. Every day we would remind each other, “Just say thank you and shut up”.

Now that sounds a bit bold to be telling each other to shut up, but we were serious about it. Why? Because that little “innocent” habit shifts perception. How you perceive yourself and how others perceive you.

When you kill a compliment, you are telling the other person

  •  You don’t value yourself or your work
  •  You don’t feel you are worth recognizing
  •  You do subpar work
  •  You have low self-esteem and even less confidence

Do you know who else you are telling these things to? You. That’s right. You are telling yourself that you are not worth a compliment.

“Hey subconscious, please don’t let someone recognize me for something positive. I’m not worthy. I just want to melt into the corner.” No.

No. No. No.

It also makes people uncomfortable. When I give a compliment and the other person goes out of their way to counter it, it’s painful to hear. I want to hug them because it makes me think they have such low self-esteem that they need a hug.

But I can’t hug you through this article. So instead, I’m going to give you the advice my best friend gave me: Say thank you then shut up.

If it is too hard to not say anything after the thank you, try turning it back on them.

“Great shoes”

“Thank you. I love your jacket.”

“Great job on the project”

“Thank you, I appreciate you noticing.”

See how easy that is? One caveat – if you return with a compliment, be sincere. If you can’t find anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.

I know this is hard, it took me decades to recognize then break it. I think I may start a support group, it’s that detrimental to you and that hard to break. But in the meantime, practice with your family and friends. Let them know you are working on this and ask them to help you.

You can do this.

Once you master it, you can help other people learn to do this.

Then there will be a wonderful collection of people around you who stop devaluing themselves and compliment each other.

Just imagine, people saying nice things, other people accepting it and returning the sentiment, and everyone feels good.

You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one…..

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As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.
Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

Do you know why no one calls you for an interview? You’re telling them not to.

Not you directly, but you in your resume. You’ve trapped it in a vicious politeness cycle. It all starts with not being able to take a compliment and ends in sabotaging yourself in your resume.

All because you are too polite.

This is a unique politeness. It is an extreme avoidance to bragging. This politeness is exhibited in many ways, such as:

  • Using your job description as bullet points.
  • Your opening tells the reader what you want.
  • There is no substance to the information.

You are playing it safe and describing why you were hired. You are also being a bit admirable in not wanting to be a braggart.

Yet the problem with this avoidance behavior, this politeness is this:

No one cares what you were hired to do – they care what happens when you do it.

You’re right about bragging, it isn’t the way to go either. Here’s the problem with that: :

No one is going to believe what you say because you said so – you have to prove it.

If you can’t brag and you can’t be too polite, then what do you do?

Tell your story.

Learning to tell your story solves both problems – and it opens the door to interviews.

A Crash Course In Storytelling

Every good story has an arc. Good arcs have certain elements: set up, action, highlights, failures, corrections, resolution. A good story gives the reader something that intrigues them, piques their curiosity, excites them. It make them want to keep reading and find out how the story ends.

A good story resonates with the reader because something within the story resonates with them.

Your resume stories should align with what is important to your reader. Don’t write for you, write for them. To do this, you need to do a bit of research. What is important to the position, team, customers, industry, company, etc.? This is the THEM FACTOR.

Generate excitement and keep them hooked in the story with framing. Use the parameters of that ideal job as your framework. This further entrenches you in the mind of the reader.

What is the bottom-line purpose of the job? How is success in this measured? What actions do you take to achieve this bottom line? How do you prove excellence in those actions? What are the most important skills you must possess and be able to master? This is the DETAIL FACTOR.

Now you have the framework to write those stories. And all the components to get to an interviewer.

Story Building Steps

Remember the THEM FACTOR? That is how you will frame your story – starting with the most important part to the reader.

Step 1. Give a basic sketch of the situation.

Let’s say you were hired to increase the number of email subscribers for an online platform. Some of the things you did were:
– research what was working in the industry, what wasn’t
– analyze the current system
– work with Marketing to understand how the collected information would be used
– use a new software to redo the process
and you increased the subscriber base 15% in 30 days.

Step 2. Prioritize

Great, now you have good baseline story elements. When writing ot the sketch, lead with what is most important to your reader. What do they value the most?

  •  The software you used
  • Your problem-solving ability
  • Your teamwork (with Marketing)
  • Your research and analyzing skills
  • The number increased or the time

Depending on their priorities, this can start in many different ways:

  • Increased subscribers 15% in 30 days…..
  • Resolved longstanding problem….
  • Modernized process integrating ABC software to…
  • Coordinated with Marketing….

In the next step, the DETAIL FACTOR comes into play.

Step 3. Fill in the blanks

There are two parts to knowing what to fill in the blanks with: skills and attributes.

Skills

The details contain the hard and soft skills. These are the keywords you want to incorporate into your resume to pass the ATS system. ATS is Applicant Tracking Software, the scanner used by over 90% of Fortune 500 companies to parcel resumes. It eliminates nearly 75% of candidates because they don’t match the job.

Attributes

Read the job description again after discerning the hard and soft skills desired. Read it this time just to get a feel. Research the company. In all your research, what is the feel you get for the company? Do they value community involvement? Do they encourage growth? Are they excited to do what they do? What’s their vibe? What kind of people are looking for? Does this jive with you?

Fill in your story using descriptor words that match both you and their energy, feel, or vibe. Done authentically and your resume will attract the human reader after it passes the ATS.

When a person reads a story that
– has meaning to them (aligns with job)
– captivates them (details the skills/attributes they want in a candidate) and
– delivers a satisfying conclusion (result)
They’ll call the hero of that story for an interview.

The End.

 

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As excited as you get in getting the call, that’s how excited I am in telling your story. If you need help telling your story, reach out. I would love to help you tell your story the way you want it known to get you where you want to be.

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As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.
Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

Or click here  – Consultation – to schedule your free 30 minute conversation.

Does Your Resume Pass This Two-Word Test?

One of the biggest mistakes I see on resumes – from college graduates to CEOs -is that their resume, and specifically the statements therein, fail a simple two-word test.

So what?

If the reader asks that question after reading your summary – fail.

If the reader asks that question after reading your bullet points – fail.

It’s so easy to fail this test when we start with the wrong information and wrong mindset.

The information is your job description.
The mindset is footnoting your past.

No one cares what you were hired to do, they care what happens when you do it.

• Hired to recreate distribution list. – So what?
• Increased subscribers by 5,000 by updating distribution list with XYZ technology. – Value delivered.

How do you transform a so what statement into a value statement? Ask a few questions and write forward.

A few questions.

Why did you do this task? How did you complete the task (what skills, technology, attributes did you use)? Who did you work with and how? What were the benefits or results of you completing this task?

Detail out the information for these questions, dig deep, gather as much as you can.

Put the story together about this task, assignment or project.

Write forward.

Write to where you want to go translating the information in a meaningful way to the reader.

What is most important to the reader? Is it your problem-solving skills? Is it increasing the number of subscribers? Is it working on or leading a team?

Whatever is most important to the reader of your resume is your guide to detailing your information.

  • Problem solving: “Removed longstanding roadblock to distribution list by solving..”
  • Subscribers: “Increased subscribers by 5,000 in only 30 days by….”
  • Leading a team: “Pulled team together and guided …..”

Start with the wow then follow with the how.

Your resume isn’t about you, it’s about the reader. To grab and keep their attention you must answer their most important question:

“What’s in it (hiring you) for me?”

 

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If your resume doesn’t excite you, sound like you or represents the you that is going places, let’s talk. I want you to discover the you that is hidden and position you to move forward in your career.

As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.
Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

If It’s All About Who You Know & Most Jobs Are ‘Hidden’ – Do I Really Need A Resume?

Yes.

How’s that for a short and sweet article?

If your understanding of a resume is a recap of title, duties and company names, we have a lot of catching up to do!

Many, many, many, years ago a resume might have been this type of recap. Something that served for both applying for a job and filling out an application. But today, something like that is like an office having a rotary phone with no voicemail. Completely inappropriate and utterly useless.

An effective resume tells your value story, in your voice to get you the recognition and connection to achieve your career goals. It sets up all your career communication: interviewing, networking, LinkedIn, etc.

Let’ dive in by taking a look at what a resume is and is not before we get into why it is critical for your career.

IS NOT

Your resume is not about you.

It is about the reader. Do you know why I don’t state something like “looking for a position where I can add value and grow” on the top of your resume? Because the reader doesn’t care what you want.

They care what you can do for them. What’s in it for them? What do they gain by hiring you?

It is not a biography, tell all or epic novel.

One of the hardest parts of building your brand is taking out what is not important to your audience. The reason this is hard is two-fold:

1. We may get over excited wanting to explain the depth of our background. No one cares about every little project or task we’ve done. It’s too much.

2. We devalue ourselves and don’ think anything is important because it’s ‘just what we do’

It’s a what have you done lately world so your most recent experience is most critical. However, demonstrating a history of growth and increasing impact is equally important. Let’s just leave off the part time job you had in college since you graduated college 20 years ago.

IS

A story that you define the narrative.

Your resume is the opportunity to tell your story they want you want it understood, not necessarily the way it looks on paper.

It is a way to make that oddball job or unfortunate position fit into the greater narrative.

Every experience brings with it the opportunity to learn. Good or bad, there is always something to learn. And that is part of your story.

For the good jobs, did you fix a certain problem, create a new revenue stream, improve the customer experience? Why were you there and what value did you bring?

A future journey not past narrative.

If I were to tell you what I did in a previous life working in the financial industry, compliance things, it might make you yawn. It might also make you wonder how that ties into me being a career storyteller. I would need to tie the two together to make you care or at least be interested.

The way to do that is to use your future to define your past. If your target role is a promotion, find out what is important for that position. What are the responsibilities, how is success measured, what skills are needed? These answers become your guide to writing your background.

Your bullet points now will describe demonstration of how you have used those skills in previous roles. How you had similar successes. Proof of possessing desired skills and traits.

Is it beginning to make sense that your resume is not just a fact sheet thrown together to fill out a job application? Good!

Beyond the paper

An effective resume is your value proposition that comes together at the intersection of your brand and the market needs.

So how is it the foundation of career communication (LinkedIn, networking, interviewing, etc.)?

You have the blueprint. By demonstrating your value, the ROI for hiring you in your voice you know how to convey your value in any forum to educate, engage, and excite.

BUILDING AN EFFECTIVE RESUME

Let’s do a quick overview of how we build a resume that serves as this important foundation.

Change your mind set.

We start with knowing it’s a story, not a data sheet.

We discover what is important to your audience and use it as a guideline.

We prove value, skills, success based on the measurements your audience is looking for.

Why do I care?

For each role there was a purpose for you being there – what was it? Did you achieve that goal? Did you make a difference?

For your bullet points, no one cares what you were hired to do. They care what happens when you did it. Take a list of responsibilities and turn them into proof points.

What was the problem (similar to your ideal job, company or industries problems), how did you solve it? Who did you work with, how did you work with them, what did you do, how did something benefit? The beneficiary could be a client, coworker, team, process, idea or company.

Describe the scenario to give context.

– Increased sales 25% – So what? Did you inherit a book of business?

That is a meaningless number without proof. Your audience wants proof because they are not going to believe you just because you said so.

– Increased sales 25% by reestablishing ties with neglected secondary partners….
– Increased sales 25% within six months by designing new widget for whodonits….
– Increased sales 25% after eradicating longstanding backlog in processing…..

Make it personal.

Become alive within your resume. Make it sound like you. How do you think, how do you approach a project, how do you strengthen relationships, how do you do what you do? Use words that resonate with you.

When it comes down to two equally qualified individuals, the one that fits in with the culture is going to win.

How will they know if you fit in the culture if you don’t let yourself shine through? Use words that resonate with you to let your voice be recognized.

Putting it all together.

Now that you have the idea of the building blocks of your foundational resume, how does this translate to all other career communication?

Because you know how to tell the story. All the hard work and heavy lifting has been done in the resume.

Interviewing

More than likely you will be asked, “tell me about a time when….”. You have the answers in your bullet points. Here was the problem, here is how I solved it by working with whom, how and here is the result.

You’re following the good old STAR method – Situation, Task, Action, Result.

Networking

Too often we use our title as our introduction. You give the power of meaning to your audience. But, since you now know your value, you can engage and set the tone.

The opening “I’m a financial advisor” now becomes “I’m a retirement coach. My clients actually retire early with solid financials to enjoy their life.”
Another benefit of your resume is it gives you the confidence to tell your story in an authentic way. It’s not made up, it’s not foo-foo language that doesn’t sound like you. It is the you that you have forgotten about and can now easily communicate.

It’s the you that is going places.

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If your resume doesn’t excite you, sound like you or represents the you that is going places, let’s talk. I want you to discover the you that is hidden and ready to move forward in your career.

As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.

Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

🎵 It’s the Most Wonderful Time…To Job Search 🎶

 

Should you continue to search for a job during the holidays?

YES!

Here is my holiday job search advice set to this classic by Andy Williams:

It’s the most wonderful time to job seek
With the kids best behaving
And everyone telling you the time is bleak
It’s the most wonderful time to job search

It’s the least crowdiest season of all
With those holiday parties and networking choices
New contacts to call
It’s the hap-happiest season of all

There’ll be parties for meeting
New contacts for greeting
And sending you to a new job

There’ll be less competition
From myths of bad timing from
Bad advice from long, long ago

It’s the most wonderful time to job seek
There’ll be jobs that are hidden
But none are forbidden
For those who pursue
It’s the most wonderful time to job search
There’ll be parties for greeting
Your new future teaming
And bosses who’ll hire you soon

There’ll be less who are looking
From bad advice given from
Job searching long, long ago

It’s the most wonderful time to job seek
There’ll be much options given
To those who are driven
To search now and near

It’s the most wonderful time
Yes the most wonderful time
Oh the most wonderful time
To job search

 

If you would like help taking advantage of this time of year or getting ready for the new year, reach out and we’ll get you positioned for success.

 

~ Lisa

 

Don’t Fudge Your Resume, It’s Not The Movies

I’m not a car gal. Although I live with someone who is a fanatic. His dream car is a ’66 427 Ford Shelby Cobra and even had a poster of Ken Niles on his wall as a kid.

Needless to say, we saw Ford v Ferrari this past weekend. It was wonderful, I highly recommend it.

There were a couple of points he could call out that weren’t accurate. (No spoilers here) This led us to wonder, how much more was fudged or made up.

I assume there was liberty taken to make it a ‘better’ story, more compelling. I don’t know that it was needed, it was a very engrossing, entertaining story.

But that’s Hollywood, they can get away with it.

But you can’t.

Not on your resume. Not in your interviews. Not in representing yourself (your personal brand).

But I see it all too often. It’s explained with one of two excuses:

1. The ATS system is hard (I can’t get past the computer!)

It’s a screening tool, of course it’s hard. It kicks out nearly 75% of all candidates. If it were easy, what would be the point in having it? Would you want to be the person who has to sort through 300+ resumes for one job? And half of those are nowhere near qualified?

2. You have the capability (I can do it if someone would just give me the chance!)

I’m not saying that you cannot. What I am saying is just because you have the potential isn’t a valid reason to represent that you have done it. No.

 

Years ago, I interviewed a young lady for the position of a broker’s assistant. On her resume, she noted that she was proficient in Excel. When I asked her about it, she stammered then admitted, “I haven’t really used it, but I know what it is.”

Strike one.

A few moments later she stated she “isn’t very good in math.”

Forget the strikes, you’re done. When you have to put stock trades in, math is important. I need you to be good at it.

 

Here is how you can address these lacks in an honest manner:

1. If you have not done a task, take a step back and look to see what skills, tools or knowledge needed to complete the task. Give an example of using these that demonstrates value in doing so.

2. Let’s say you’re required to know ABC system but don’t know it. But you learn systems fast. State this fact with an example that demonstrates how you learned another system and put it to good use.

Notice what both of these options have in common – you have to prove it, not say it. Demonstrate value.

Bottom line, don’t fudge, fluff or smidge. It’s not worth it. You ruin  your credibility.

Ford didn’t believe Shelby just because he said so, he had to prove himself.

And prove himself he did.

 

**Photos by Merrick Morton/20th Century Fox and Bernard Cahier/Getty Images.**

 

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As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.
Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

 

If You Have To Tell Someone You Are, You’re Not

I’m stealing that from my grandmother. It comes from watching an interaction with a disturbing lack of what used to be called social graces. After which, she turned to me and said, “If you have to tell someone you are a lady, you’re not.

I think this is one of the wisest things I have ever heard. Change out “lady” for anything of importance. This then lends to a question that will serve as your guide:

Am I saying it or am I proving it?

It doesn’t matter what you say, it matters what you do. People can say anything. I can say I’m six foot tall, that doesn’t make it true. (I’m five foot, by the way).

Never is this concept more important than in your resume and LinkedIn. These are the foundation pieces to your personal brand – the business you. The you that represents your promised delivery, the ROI, in doing business with you or hiring you.

When building your brand, resume, LinkedIn etc. there is purpose in every statement. Each has to pass the “so what” test.

I’m a project manager. – So what?

I’m a dynamic leader. – So what?

I’m an efficiency expert. – So what?

The three statements above are just that – statements. No proof. No meaning. There is more to the so what, it actually ends with “why should I care”.

I just earned my degree. – So what, why should I care?

I have 10 years’ experience. – So what, why should I care?

I used to work in the Automotive industry. – So what, why should I care?

These generic statements don’t build a connection or show value. They are telling, not proving.

Let’s prove value. Let’s make these statements mean something. Let’s tell a story. Let’s tell your story with these four steps.

1. What’s important

We need a purpose for our story. This comes from your audience. What is important to them? Saving time, making money, expanding territories, brining in the right people, streamlining processes, making things more efficient – what are their pain points? Where do they need help? What do they value the most?

2. Pieces of the puzzle

Here we are going to ask a few questions to get to your ROI. Once you have identified what’s important, we need to go back and find where you have done these things. That’s the basis.

Now fill it in by answering: who did you work with, how did you work with them what did you do, and how did something benefit?

3. Value

This is the key. How did something benefit? Answering this is your value. The something could be a team member, team, company, client, process, industry – anything. That’s your hook.

4. Lead with the greatest impact

These are the building blocks for your resume, LinkedIn, networking, elevator speech, and interviewing. This is how you prove your ROI with ‘here’s the value I bring by doing … (filling in what it is you do).

Let’s say you had a problem with time consuming programs that took a lot of time and effort to run. They drive your people crazy.

Now let’s say you were to hear (or read) the following:

“I save client’s an average of $150,000 by guiding them through replacing all their outdated processes for a single system that takes half the processing time.”

“I’m an account manager.”

Who do you want to talk to?

I would say the first person because they are speaking your language. They address your pain and tell you how they solve it. They tell you what you will most likely get in working with them (or hiring them).

 

When you start telling your story, which describes the value in what you do, that’s when you’ll start connecting.

 

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As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.

Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

The Choosers Guide to Failure Winning, an 8 Point Plan

I know life hands us some pretty crappy things. And we can orchestrate some spectacular failures for ourselves. We all fail. But what happens after that?

It’s your choice. You get to choose.

Be a chooser.

Do you move forward or let it weigh you down?

Some of my failures could be considered masterpieces of failures. Hall of Fame worthy. I’ve failed as a mother, a partner, a leader, a business owner. I failed. I learned. I improved. I grow.  Here are eight points I have learned and use to win from failure.

1. You’re not that special. [Recognize]

Rarely is your failure a one-of-its-kind. Other people have screwed up in the same or similar way. Think about it: in all the ways to mess up, are you really that special that you created a failure that is a first in history?

I doubt it. So cut yourself a break. Why not find people who made the same mistake and learn how they bounced back.

2. Short time in the ring. [Permission]

It is natural to beat yourself up when you fail. Instead of making it a new daily routine, try this: give yourself permission to do a little beating up then forgive yourself.

Take yourself in a boxing ring, throw a couple punches, then get out.

You don’t get a full round. Ten to fifteen seconds is all you get to give yourself your best shot, a jab or two. Then get out. Period. Take off the gloves. You’re done beating yourself up.

Forgive yourself and let’s move forward.

3. You’re still here. [Perspective]

As trite as it sounds, you’re still alive. If you’re reading this, the worst did not happen. And if your still here, you’re not done. You have more to do.

I’ve been there where after a massive failure, my starting point to move forward was, “Well, I woke up today, I’ve got more to do.”

Start where you can. Start where you are.

4. It’s not who you are. [Release]

Failure chains itself to us when we take it on as a character trait.

Failure is an event, not a personal attribute.

Failure is what happened, not a definition of you. Babies fail to walk across the room on their first try. You don’t label them a failure. Why be so hard on yourself? Stop it.

5. It’s a tool. [Learn]

Failure, as an event, is also a teachable moment. A tool. We all fail, it is how we learn. Remember the babies learning to walk? With each step then learn and build on their skills. They take these lessons and put them into practice. The walk. Then they run. Learn to use it to your advantage.

6. Use your brain. [Investigate]

Failure can be very emotional. I’ve melted into a puddle of tears before, which made the short stint in the boxing ring ugly. But then I flip the mad switch. It’s my personality. I tell the emotional side of my brain to go rest and let my analytical side take over.

Look at your failure from a neutral, deconstruction perspective. Ask yourself a series of questions to explore and dive into the fullness of the event:

“What went wrong… Where were early warning signs… What did I miss… What could I have seen… What actions did I take that helped or hindered… What can I learn that can help me make better decisions in similar situations… What did I do well… What resources do I have that I did not use…, etc.”

Dive deep. Keep asking questions. Answer honestly. This emotionally-detached deconstruction will serve as the blueprint for your growth.

Don’t ask only negative questions, recognize the positives in the situation, too.

7. Do something about it. [Ownership]

This is the chooser’s guide to winning at failing. So it makes sense that you need to make a choice and do something. Choose to move forward. Introspection, insight, and blueprints don’t mean diddlysquat without action.

Start. Take one action. It doesn’t have to be big, but there has to be a step. Build on it. Chart your progress. Celebrate your success every inch along the way – no matter how small.

8. Don’t be stingy. [Empowerment]

Share your experience with others. This will reinforce in you that you rock. You turned around a bad situation and it will encourage others that they can do it too. We are not isolated islands on this earth. We’re all in it together. We all get better, grow and benefit from our positive interactions and when we learn from each other.

 

You can do this. You can triumph. You can be an inspiration. You’ve got this!

 

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As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.

Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.

Or let’s have a conversation to get you moving forward now. Click here – Let’s Talk! – to schedule a free phone consultation.

 

4 Step Plan for an Awesome Resume

My dad was a mechanic. My grandfather was an electrician. My uncle led a construction crew. My DNA is programmed to build things.

It’s how I look at resumes. Building a brand.

With any good build, you need a plan. Sequential steps with each action building on the last.

For a quick read and a plan of action to help you with your resume, here is my simplified plan of four steps to build your brand for an awesome resume.

Pre-work

Before we build there is one critical step – you have to know your goal. What job are you targeting? You may be interested in several avenues, but your foundation is for one.

Step 1. Position Purpose

What is the bottom-line purpose of the position? Narrow down the entire scope to one statement. Keep reducing it until you get to the bottom-line impact value. For example: maintain revenue streams and retain clients. Or: protect a book of business from risk.

Boil it down. There may be more than one purpose. This is barebones. It doesn’t have to be pretty. It will generally fall into something to do with time or money in one form or another.

Step 2. Core Drivers

Again, we are focusing on broad strokes. There are normally three to five activities that you must do to achieve the position’s purpose. List these things. What are those things? Perhaps one is to oversee system and quality assurance processes (CTO) or maintain records of financial transactions (Bookkeeper).

Step 3. Primary Actions

Now let’s start digging in. Under each of the core drivers, what does that entail? How do you do those things? Who do you work with, how, what do you do and how does something benefit from your involvement?

Step 4. Differentials

Here is the icing on the cake, putting you in your brand. How do you do the things in your chart that is different or better than anyone else? What makes you stand out among your competition? What skills or strengths do you use in completing the primary actions?

This is the blueprint to create an authentic brand that distinguishes you, supported by demonstrated value and speaks to the needs and critical points of the desired position.

When you cover all of those bases, you’ll be the top candidate for the job.

 

⇒⇒⇒ Want a kickstart – click Awesome Chart! to download our free blueprint chart to help you get started charting the most important elements for your resume and brand. ⇐⇐⇐

Need a little more kick and some coaching to get you clear and on your way? Click here to set up a free consultation to see how we can get you momentum in the right direction.

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As a triple certified as a Professional Resume Writer, Career Coach and Social Media Brand Analyst I help amazing professionals get career happy.
Click here – CareerPolish.com – to find out more.