Intentional Leadership

In the United States of America, September 17, 1787 is etched in the memory of its citizens as the day that 38 delegates signed a new ‘Constitution’ that would bring into existence the United States of America with a central, federal government. Through the echoes of history, such an event stands as a great achievement and the words of Stephen. R. Covey ring true. If the founding fathers were not focused, consciously committed to the task of creating a new ‘Constitution’, they would have, according to Covey, been committed to something else less important and thus history may well have taken a different course.

12 Don’ts for Holding Difficult Conversations

After a recent presentation, someone approached me and asked, “I noticed that when you share your learning with us, you often give us things to do rather than telling us what not to do. Why do you do that?” I responded by stating that when someone tells you what not to do, your brain focuses on that, often leading you to do what you are told specifically not to do. For example, if you were teaching someone to ski, you would not tell them, “If you lose control, don’t look at the trees!” Making this statement would lead people to look at the trees. Rather you would say, “If you lose control, remember to look down the hill in the direction you want to go.”

Two Traits on Which to Build A Workforce

Individuals, governments, and private businesses all share one absolute truth: Reputation is everything. If an individual has a bad reputation, no one wants to take a chance on them. When a company has a bad reputation, no one wants to do business with them, so much so, that others can simply avoid these less-desirable services and take their business elsewhere. However, people often can’t easily avoid or seek out another local government as easily. Therefore, in many ways, it is even more critical that local governments guard their reputation.

How to Tailor Your Cover Letter to a Government Job

Applying for a government position is a lot different from applying for a private-sector job. Unlike the latter, government or public-sector applications often require a cover letter or personal statement. Landing a job in a government agency takes a special approach and the cover letter is the hiring manager’s first glimpse at your skills and qualifications. At the same time, it serves as an introduction to your personality and interests.

Information Governance Insights: Repeat After Me – Cyber Security is Everyone’s Business

“Hacks” and Identity Theft have been around for a very long time, but over the past few years, the hackers have changed tactics and are targeting whole systems for attack. Ransomware is the latest incarnation of this where clicking on a single email can launch an attack that will lock down an entire organization and render their computer inaccessible until a “ransom” is paid to the hacker for the promise of an access code to unlock the system.

Selfless Service, Strong Values, and Personal Connection

There are several insights anyone can gain from an effective, genuine leader. As a genuine leader, you should be bold about your values and about the behaviors you must demonstrate to live your values. Share them. Ask your staff to help you live them. Connect to each of your team members. Learn and support their plans, hopes, and dreams. Let people know you care – and they will care right back. Demonstrate your skills in the workplace and help others build their skills. Be bold about the skills you DON’T have, yet, and ask for coaching from players who do have those skills. Commit time, talent, and treasure to personal and company philanthropy. Share what you have with those less fortunate, not just during the holidays, but all year long.

Information Governance Insights: Don’t Move Junk Into a New House

Most organizations have been using Microsoft’s Exchange in the Cloud for quite some time and many of them have bought into Office 365 for the price point alone. A recent trend is to fully adopt the Office 365 environment, scale back the traditional on-premise server farms and move everything to the Cloud as part of an overall digital transformation of the workplace. This is a noble endeavor, but invariably there are issues mainly around what to do with all the “valuable” stuff people are hoarding in their personal files. Can we all agree that we all have our secret stash in our network shares that we don’t want to give up?

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Effective Leaders Catch People Doing Things Right

Over 30 years ago I had a conversation with a teenager that caught me completely off guard – and reminds me of a valuable principle to this day. While I have a very well-honed skill for catching people doing things wrong – if I want to be an effective leader, I need to catch people doing things right. I work on this every day, with clients, peers, and bosses – greatly because of the jumpstart this conversation gave me.

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Your Potential Matters

Choose to make the decisions that will take you to the end that you have in mind. That means being proactive, not reactive about life and what it might present to you. The wisdom of Winnie the Pooh in the 2018 movie Christopher Robin is useful on this point. Winnie The Pooh: I always get to where I’m going by walking away from where I’ve been.

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What Happens When Employee Engagement is Neglected?

A topic that has been discussed a lot this week in the office with my clients is employee engagement and business results. Employee engagement is the degree to which employees demonstrate commitment, belief in organizational values, pride in their employment, and motivation to excel. When organizations prioritize employee engagement, they are investing in the retention of successful employees and helps boost the organization’s overall level of performance.

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Consciousness vs. Consequences: Lessons Learned

I recently published a book, The 9 Dimensions of Conscious Success – It’s All About YOU!, based on challenges and lessons learned over my 40-year career. I wondered whether those who enter the workforce today face bigger challenges than those I had encountered when I launched my career journey. My research verified that, in some ways, the “deck is stacked” against the current generations.

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The (Unfair) Pressure on the Kicker

The position of the kicker on a football team has always intrigued me. Here is a player that for most of the time is practically anonymous. Many of the rival fans and neutrals watching won’t even know his name. He runs on, unannounced and unnoticed, a few times in the game just to kick the ball between the posts, and then disappears again, whilst everybody is generally consumed with the much higher profile players and the more dramatic plays.

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What Happens When Tech Innovates HR Functions

In 2019, tech will continue to take over the HR industry and disrupt the way candidates are recruited, hired, and engaged in the workplace. You’ve heard of AI and machine learning. However, have you heard of robotic process automation, or RPA? RPA has also been reducing costs and improving data management for HR. Robotic process automation performs rules-based, highly transactional processes in HR departments that require little or no human judgment.

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Employee Engagement Matters

As the New Year begins and our work life starts to move into first gear, we can be tempted to think back to yesteryear and ponder the ‘if only…?’ question. Not that reflection is a bad thing mind you, indeed, done purposefully it can be positive. That said, there is a lot of wisdom in what Walt Disney had to say. Curiosity is what impels us to move forward.

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Flexing Your Appreciative Resilience Muscle

It will be well into 2019 by the time you read this. Resolutions have stuck or come and gone. Work is demanding excellence, there is a change agenda, a call for new innovations, and you are being asked to resolve office conflicts. And, it is a particularly demanding time in history for those who work in government in the service of citizens.

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Information Governance Insights: Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot?

A new year means new beginnings and for the Information Governance Professional, it’s no different. It’s also time to get rid of your old files. This is the time of year when most organizations purge their archives of files that have reached their retention date. Many organizations prefer to use the generic month of January as a default disposition date for all records that can be disposed of in a given year, basically to get it over with. Regardless of when you do it, the important thing is that you follow the Retention Schedule and the Disposition process.

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