Who do you want your clients to become?

Just as much as your clients have an idea or goal they want to achieve or a change they want to make and want your expertise to guide them, you more than likely have an idea of what you want for your clients.

Here are some thoughts that resonated with me when I thought about this for my business and those whom I serve:

I want my clients to know and own their value - be confident in themselves and what they have to offer.

I want for them to be successful business owners and excited to share what they have to offer and embrace their role as the business leader, not just the creative side they love.

My clients are those who are genuinely concerned and care about their people - whether they are team members, clients, family, and friends - and many of them care for animals, too. With that in mind, I want my clients to confidently set and honor boundaries, so that they are decisive and compassionate when they say yes and no.

I want my clients to embrace their discomfort with being...

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Habits of a Positive Leader

To be a positive, strong and influential leader, you have to develop and strengthen a leadership practice that is authentic to you. Whether you’re running your own business or leading teams or projects in the corporate world, your leadership practice is built by consistently honing your skills, gifts, and abilities.

It’s a choice you make day in and day out, regardless of title. And to honor that choice to be the leader you know you’re meant to be will require changes from you.

Such as your habits.

Those little things that we do every day, and many times, on autopilot are important to change. Yet when your habits change, you’ll see the results and they will become your new norm. So, here are five habits for you to evaluate and adjust as appropriate for where you are and where you want to go:

Number 1 - Positive leaders are continually learning

They are looking to expand their knowledge and strengthen their skills.

For instance, reading or listening to a few...

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Which Are You? Playing to Win or Playing Not to Lose?

Although it may seem like semantics, the difference is key. When you play to win, you are willing to push yourself.

You're willing to move completely out of your comfort zone, even if you're nervous. You ask for help and trust your teammates to do their part. You have a “can do” mindset, so you are open to possibilities and solutions. You make decisions based on the belief that you will succeed, not out of fear. 

When you play not to lose, you're timid in your actions, and you're not willing to take some risks.

The fear of failure is taking up too much energy, and you may be inadvertently holding yourself back. Playing not to lose also allows that inner critic to get louder and louder and be more in control than that still knowing on the inside and trusting yourself.

But just think – whatever these big, out of your comfort zone goals are - when you show up as the leader you know you are and you’re playing to win – then when you achieve them, it...

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What's the "So What?"

What's the "so what?"

So what does that mean?

When I was in the corporate world, I led many high level visibility projects, including employee recognition events and company trade shows.

And for each of these events, I’d ask what was the “so what?”

To put it another way, if I were to tell my boss or someone who might be expected to attend this event about it, and if they answered “So what – why do I care or want to be there?” I wanted to be able to answer it.

So – what IS the so what?

It’s the why behind the event or project. It’s the reason the event or project is important to do and in some cases, the reason it is appropriate at that time.

It’s the reason why someone wants to be there – not has to because their boss is expecting them to attend. It’s the reason why one project takes priority over another project.

The “so what” answers the question “What’s in it for me?”

It’s...

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Why CONFIDENCE is so Important to Leadership

To show up as the confident business leader you're meant to be, you need to share your strengths and stay true to your vision and values and that's where confidence kicks in.

The more confidence you have, the more you will:

    • Know what your strengths are and be willing to put yourself out there and share them over and over again
    • Push yourself to desire a big vision and realize you're fully capable of making it happen and with confidence you declare it as yours
    • Trust you can turn that vision into reality by creating an actionable and achievable plan to get there
    • Make decisions that need to be made and execute them, especially difficult ones, without second guessing
    • Know and trust what to say yes to and what to intentionally say no to
    • Communicate effectively what the vision is and work with others to help them know what it is, why it's important and how they fit, so that they are able to buy into the vision because they're buying into you
    • Develop and grow your group from high...
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How to Receive Feedback

How to receive feedback, and let’s start with the definition of feedback - which is information about reactions to a product, a person’s performance of a task, which is used as a basis for improvement.

So with this definition – do you get a feeling that feedback is positive or negative?

Whatever that feeling is will show up in how you receive feedback about a given situation.

What I mean by this is – if you perceive feedback to be negative, then you’ll potentially be a bit more on the defensive when you receive it.

If, however, you perceive feedback as a way to enhance something you are working on such as your leadership practice or something you’re producing for your business or your organization – then you’ll be receptive to new ideas.

You may even feel that you’re supported because someone else is contributing either information, skills, or support to the success of your endeavor.

So the first thing to consider when receiving...

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A productivity secret for #allthethings

As a small business owner or entrepreneur, there are many things that need to get done for your business to move forward. You can feel like you wear a million hats, and most days, it feels like there are five sitting on your head at once.

When you look at your project management tool or to do list, although you can see that you're making progress and cross something off, it seems like two or ten more items get added and you wonder how it will all get done.

As you look over your list, are there some items that you dread doing because you are not using your strengths, so you feel like you struggle to complete them? What happens to your other tasks and responsibilities when you are spending so much time and energy on a task that is draining you?

In order to lead your team or business, there will always be things that need to get done that you may not excel in doing. However, that does not mean that you must personally complete every item that your team or business needs to have done.

...
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Valuing Your Experts

 No matter if you're in the corporate world or running your own business, you're working with other people who have different skill sets from yours. The beauty in that is that's why you're working with them, or in some cases, hired them.

Or why someone hired you.

You bring a specific set of skills, talents, abilities, knowledge and gifts that only you could do. Just like each person you work with.

So when situations present themselves where you question what your expert says or does, remember why you hired them in the first place and seek to understand where they are coming from before jumping to any conclusions.

The saying about "knowing enough to be dangerous" is what's running through my mind because that can be a double edged sword. To know enough to be dangerous so that you can have a conversation and be wiling to say when you don't know and ask questions is great. Yet to know enough to be dangerous and not ask questions or assume you know more than you really do is...

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How Full is Your Cup?

I wanted to take some time to talk about self-care and remind you to take time….

Oh wait, I mean make time to do things that fill your cup.

When you’re just going, going, going, and feel like your to-do list keeps getting bigger, you can start feeling like you need to do more. To push even harder.

I know I can certainly feel this way.

And that’s the exact time when you need to take a step back, chill, and do something for you.

It seems so counterintuitive to slow down to go fast, but if you’re running on empty, feeling stressed out or anxious, then whatever you're working on or whomever your working with will not get your best efforts. They are getting what’s left, especially those closest to you.

And you feel frustrated, tired, and just exhausted.

It’s hard to give what you don’t have.

You deserve better for yourself, and those around you (family – pets included, friends, team, clients, customers) do. Your business does too.

So if...

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Fully leverage your gifts

What your gifts are – those things that really make you YOU – the more positive impact you can make for your team, organization or business.

And you may not be really clear what they are, but you look at your experiences, why people come to you and for what reason, what lights you up and what feels effortless and time goes so quickly, you’ll see breadcrumbs to help you identify them.

I remember being in the corporate world and working with my VP for a new recognition program. It needed to have a different approach and feel than anything done before. She gave me her vision in a few words, and I took that back and developed the concept, branding, process, and budget for it. When we regrouped, she said – you see the vision, and with a few parameters, create a viable product and deployment plan. That was one of my breadcrumbs.

As you are clear on your gifts and working from them, determine how you can take it a step further and enable your team or clients to do...

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