Personal Effectiveness

Research that Supports Being “Good with People”

February 2, 2017

For years, I’ve written about how to “master the people equation” to make a positive impact in your work life. It seems obvious (to me, at least) that people who “get along” with others are more effective at getting stuff done. People aren’t real fond of Negative Nellies and Neds. They don’t like to work […]

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4 Tips for Staying Humble

January 16, 2017

One of the biggest egos in the cartoon world belongs to the character Plankton from the Nickelodeon cartoon SpongeBob SquarePants.  Plankton’s over-inflated sense of worth (and his never-ending quest to steal the coveted Krabby Patty recipe) leads him to run roughshod over the inhabitants of Bikini Bottom. To wit: It’s funny in cartoon-land. But the […]

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Manners in the Workplace are a Competitive Advantage

October 24, 2016

In 2005, university professor and communications expert Dr. Beverly Langford published The Etiquette Edge: The Unspoken Rules to Business Success, to positive reviews. Fast-forward a decade, and Langford has once again stepped into the spotlight with a second edition of her book, The Etiquette Edge: Modern Manners for Business Success. In this age where manners […]

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Why Silence at Work is a Good Thing—For Introverts and Extroverts Alike

October 17, 2016

I am the offspring of two very different personality types: a gregarious extrovert and a studious introvert. My youth was shaped by my mother’s extroverted style. She had a positive, upbeat energy and effortless charm in social situations. From her, I learned how to thrive outside the safety of my home. But in my heart […]

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10 Simple Phrases that Cast Sunlight

October 12, 2016

Last week I wrote about how we are naturally drawn towards positive people because they inspire us. In nature, that’s called the “heliotropic effect,” which describes how plants grow or move towards sunlight. This week, I penned a similar piece, but this time from a leadership angle. I bet you can easily think of managers […]

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In Support of Amy Cuddy and Power Posing

October 10, 2016

Wonder Woman kicks butt. She’s strong, principled, and makes people tell the truth with her golden lasso. When I was a kid, I watched the Linda Carter version on TV.  She’s my favorite heroine, as evidenced by the many WW items adorning my home. When Harvard professor Amy Cuddy made news with her 2012 “power […]

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Finding Your Sunshine At Work

October 3, 2016

Every summer, I plant a small veggie garden in my Michigan backyard. Even though the location is too shady for some of the sun-loving plants, it’s the only place that works in our yard, so we (and by “we”, I mean both the plants and I) make do. This summer I experimented with the placement […]

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Why Leaders Need to Understand the Difference between Influence and Manipulation

September 6, 2016

If you enact a leadership role, you have some measure of influence. And you also likely don’t see yourself as a manipulator. Do you know where influence stops and manipulation begins?  Read on to learn what two prominent authors who’ve conducted extensive research on leadership and change management have to say about this important distinction. […]

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Help Your Team Be More Productive with these 4 Tips

August 9, 2016

If you asked your team members what saps their productivity, what would they say? They’d probably mention unnecessary meetings, interruptions or poor communications, right? What if — shockingly — you were listed as one of the reasons that your team couldn’t get their work done? Wait a minute, you say, I’m not a micromanager; I […]

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Giving Praise as a Way to Increase Your Happiness

July 25, 2016

Are you a praise giver or taker? How you respond may offer a clue into your level of happiness at work. Happiness researcher Shawn Achor has made a name for himself studying the many facets of happiness. His research has uncovered a startling connection between praise and happiness: the more praise you give, the happier […]

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