Tag: Assessment

[Life Back West] October 2013 – Kismet?


“Kismet” the CEO asked? “Yes, kismet,” I said. “The not-so-accidental fact that I’m working with someone who has some of the same strengths and challenges that I have. The good news? I know them well.” The CEO’s direct report was the client, someone I’ll call “Bob,” did indeed have a skill set that reminded me […]

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Lose Your Voice?


“Did you lose your voice?” It was the first question my exec coaching client asked himself as the chairman went around the room polling everyone’s thoughts. “Worse,” my client said, “I knew it was a really bad idea and everyone else knew it too.” Research by social scientists documents the dangers of groupthink; an opinion […]

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3 Quick Items Worth Catching

Reading (process)Dan Pink's new book To Sell is Human has terrific great research on getting your ideas across. Here's a link to a short video of his 6 Successors to the Elevator Pitch.

Three posts worth your reading / watching time: Dan Pink’s new book To Sell is Human has terrific great research on getting your ideas across. Here’s a link to a short video of his 6 Successors to the Elevator Pitch. Former McKinsey consultant Andrew Sobel’s sweet spot is client relationships. Here’s a recent post titled […]

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Do Software Engineers Rule the World?

shutterstock_127976582A guy I met at a client firm's baseball outing had a singular statement:

    A guy I met at a client firm’s baseball outing had a singular statement: “Silicon Valley software engineers rule the world!“ Do they? His take was based on some simple facts: the world is run on software, the best of the best software engineers are in Silicon Valley, firms can never find enough good […]

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Look Before They’re Gone: RIP Alma Mater U

Barnard College, 1913  (LOC)

It’s autumn; college football games have started another season, and the leaves will soon be turning on campuses across the country. Catch a good look; for any number of liberal arts colleges this year will mark the start of their demise. Those people working in the space who are early in their careers need to […]

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End of the Year Calling: The 90-Day Sprint


2014 is calling. Yes, you. The words it uses – “bonus,” “performance review,” “promotion” – may be different but the results are the same. Time to up your game and/or up the game of your team. Time to get started. If you haven’t been “campaigning” now is the time to start. And every day counts. […]

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[Life Back West] August 2013 – “Sometimes a Great Notion”

Dictionary Series - Philosophy: trueI could say I predicted that the Chronicle's C.W. Nevius would write "The vibe may be more Mission than Marina today" when talking about trendy neighborhoods in the City.

I could tell you that 23 years ago when I moved to San Francisco I figured out that my neighborhood in the Mission would be the hippest place to live west of Williamsburg in Brooklyn, if not North America. I could say I predicted that the Chronicle’s C.W. Nevius would write “The vibe may be more Mission […]

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The Startup: Why Build the Extra Plumbing if You’re Going to Sell?

Equipment, cables and piping as found inside of a modern industryou have to travel light

Jack Hawley, one of the smartest OD people I’ve ever known, once shared the Native American saying that “to travel fast you have to travel light.” It applies to people (whether it’s actual luggage or their own personal baggage) but it also applies to startups and any other organizations. The fact is that it’s hard […]

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Career Tip? Be Like Mike!


In the search for the “great” job, it helps to offer something that employers value that they can’t easily find elsewhere. It’s not always easy but it’s doable; here’s how. Start by thinking about you want to avoid; being a commodity.  A commodity, notes the Merriam-Webster dictionary, “is a good or service whose wide availability typically […]

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Dumb Practices: Should You Sign Things You Can’t Read?

Dumb and Dumber

There are few things worse at work than doing something you regret and knew better beforehand. Things that were dumb at first blush and seem dumber every time you revisit them. Things like accepting a job having no idea what you’re going to be paid, transferring to a role and not knowing whether the role […]

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