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Career Professionals: Increase your Leadership Brand Visibility using LinkedIn

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Yes, you can increase your leadership brand using LinkedIn. What would it do for you? You can be seen and considered as an influencer or expert. When seen as such in a social media platform like LinkedIn, you will increase your negotiation power and the view your current employer or prospective employers see you. How?
Become searchable, the easiest way to be searchable on LinkedIn is changing your URL. Customize your URL with your name, especially if there are other people with your name on LinkedIn. Do you need help? Watch the video below, make the changes and enjoy the benefits of being on the first page of Google.

1: Connect with other influencers and industry leaders; when you associate with leaders, you will be a leader. Take a look at your connections and assess who is in your circle? If your circle needs help, go ahead and look for people in your industry you would like to be associated with. Send them an Inmail and connect.
2: Blog, do you. You can create your own blog through your personal LinkedIn profile. Yes, you can add graphics, videos and branded information that will provide your connections with valuable information coming from you.
3: Videos, yes, people still don’t believe me. You can upload videos on LinkedIn or even create videos on the app and upload it to your profile. A word of caution, know your audience and the platform before you venture into the “wild world of videos” online.

 

Have you EVER Assessed your Personal Brand?

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Yes, this question is a serious one.  If you are ready for upward mobility, but you look around and notice that people are climbing and you are left behind, I want you to take a serious look at your Personal Brand.

What is a Personal Brand, you may ask. According to Wikipedia: “Personal Brand is the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands.”  This concept was coined by Tom Peters in his Best-Selling Book In Search for Excellence.

Now, would it help, if you take a minute to assess yourself as a product?

What would that product be?

Now, you may ask, Fay, what is a brand then? The dictionary calls it an identifying mark (burned on livestock/criminals or slaves). I know this is a different context, but this is what the dictionary calls “branding.

As an example, if you were to assess yourself as a car brand, what type of car would you be?  Would you be a reliable Honda, a safe Volvo or a classic Mercedes?  What would your brand be?

So, can we conclude that in today’s market, we see a brand as to what and how people think of you or a product when they see or say your name?  It’s the emotion and thought of you that comes up with the thought or the sound of your name.  

What does this mean when we talk about your career? Do you have any control over what people say or think about you?  Can you influence someone’s view of you?  Sure, you can, we see it every day in film, in industry, and in life.  When you make a change, for instance, to your hair color, style or shape, you change how others see you.   When you want to make a change, you make it; sometimes it is forced upon you, sometimes you make the decision yourself. Either way, the decision to change or not is still yours.

But, now, how many of us really take the time to make focused changes to attract a career, a position or a project we really want. How many times do we make these changes with intention?  Most of the time, we either make the changes or we don’t without giving it a second thought.   We go with the flow of our daily lives without being strategic about our goals, careers and the decisions we need to make to obtain our desires.

I am not suggesting that you poll your friends, family or even your boss every time you want to make a personal or a professional change.  What I am suggesting is for you become strategic, look at your goals then make the necessary changes, improvements and actions to bring your goal into fruition.

There are many misconceptions about personal branding in the workplace but the most damaging one is believing that your “Brand” does not matter, that if you work hard enough and people see your “efforts” you will be rewarded.  I am sorry to break it to you but, like cars, every brand advertises; their targets may be different, but they all advertise with the intent of capturing buyers’ attention.

When you look in the mirror, what job do you see yourself advertising for? An assistant? A specialist? A boss?  It  doesn’t really matter which one you choose, the primary question is:  Were you intentional in your choice?

In my practice, I see how well-educated and professional women find it difficult to understand why they are being overlooked for promotions, why they are not viewed or considered as boss material.  I will look them in the eyes and ask, do you act, talk and show up like a boss or an assistant?  “Be clear and be intentional” is always my advice.  Know what you want and work towards it.  It is the only way to get where you want to go.

The decision is yours.

Your Mindset is Sabotaging your Career and Life

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What stops you from achieving your goals?  When you think of your unaccomplished dreams, is there anything you can put your hands on?

What gets in your way of achieving your deepest life desires?  Do you know?

Yes, you can say it is fear… but fear takes many forms.

In this post, I want to call this “awkward feeling,” a form of fear and self sabotage by its rightful name…

“Imposter Syndrome”, also known as Fraud Syndrome or Inner Critic.

So, what is Imposter Syndrome? According to Wikipedia, “it is a term coined by Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Pauline Clance and Suzanne Imes.  According to the research, Imposter Syndrome refers to high-achieving individuals who has the inability to internalize their accomplishments and have a persistent fear of being exposed as a fraud.”

According to Merriam-Webster, the Imposter Syndrome is viewed as a false and sometimes crippling belief that one’s successes are the product of luck or fraud rather than skill. 

A crippling belief indeed.  This belief has been stopping women from moving up into management and recognizing their full potential for years.   I must admit that I am still a work in progress, when I think about Imposter Syndrome.  What about you?  This is an issue I have been battling for many years but never knew it was a truly researched and defined condition.  I never saw myself as being shy (and if you know me, you certainly know that I am far from being shy).  However, even today, I need to constantly keep my eyes open and evaluate myself to not fall into the feelings and behaviors of someone with Imposter Syndrome.

When you become aware of the feelings and behaviors that contribute to having Imposter Syndrome and realize how they are hindering your progress, you have the key to solving it in your hands.  Each one of us may have a different solution but this is a journey we all need to take. I can’t guarantee that you will ever stop the feelings or the voices in your head that’s hindering you; but, you will be able to make and manage your progress and results despite the feeling of being a “fraud.”

These of some of the Characteristics that Describes someone with Imposter Syndrome… do you have any?

 

  • You have difficulty accepting praise. You feel awkward when people celebrate your successes.
  • You discount your success, minimizing your accomplishments.
  • You dread success in some ways because you feel you will need to maintain that level or risk being exposed as someone not as competent as others originally believed.
  • You are paralyzed by the fear of failure and you’d rather not achieve than to fail in any way, shape or form? And later beating up yourself for not trying.
  • You avoid showing confidence in yourself and your abilities because of the way others will perceive you.
  • You over-work, over-research and over-study because it’s never enough. You need to cover all the bases.
  • You’re obsessed with perfection; you want your projects to be perfect. If they aren’t perfect, they won’t be launched or deployed.

 

How these behaviors keep you stuck and comfortable in the same role for years?

 

  • You stop taking risks.

 

  • You feel overwhelmed and under-accomplished because there is never enough time to get everything done.
  • You don’t apply for promotions because there may be some others more qualified who applied, at least, that is what you think?
  • You don’t set the necessary boundaries so you get stuck with more work and projects than your peers. Earning the same salary.
  • You don’t share your ideas in meetings because you fear criticism–from your team, your boss or even your peers.
  • You are somewhat fearful to make profound change in your department or area.
  • You avoid making decisions and giving orders with confidence and drive, because you don’t want to be called the “b….” word.
  • You are constantly holding your breath thinking that some way, someday, someone will expose or embarrass you as the “fraud” you perceive yourself to be in your own head, despite your extensive experience, knowledge and successes.

Guess what, even leading ladies and leading men in Hollywood are victims of the Imposter Syndrome, we are talking about Hugh Laurie, Emma Watson, Viola Davis and the list goes not, you don’t believe me?  Watch: bit.ly/ViolaonOscars; bit.ly/leadingladies-impostersyndrome.

 

So how do you control this “Syndrome”?   

  

How do you overcome it?  How do you Safeguard yourself? 

 

Imposter Syndrome is all about feelings of inadequacy.  These feelings will linger in your heart and mind, even when you have successes and accomplishments that should easily override them.

Just remember: It is all in your head!

Take note:

  • Awareness is key. You can only manage what you know.  If you deny the fact that you suffer from Imposter Syndrome, you will always fall short of your greatness.
  • Understand that this feeling may never go away, but you can learn to live with it. It’s a daily struggle but, I promise you, it does get better.
  • Action is the best antidote. Don’t be afraid and have faith that you will be OK.
  • Remind yourself that you don’t need to know everything. Learn to rely on your team or even in your ability to find the answers.  This will minimize your need to know everything and to procrastinate.
  • Learn to talk to your issue or even to the voices in your head… let “her” (the voice in your head) know that you will be alright and “she” doesn’t have to worry about you. You’ve got this!
  • Recognize your expertise, create an achievement wall, file (testimonials/letters of recommendations) or jar (with your successes). Use them as needed.
  • Flip the Script, change your thinking. Replace your negative thoughts with positive ones.  Granted, it will take some work to not only to say it, but to also believe it… Keep the Course.
  • Have bible verses and words of wisdom at your fingertips to read in times of doubt.
  • Visualize your success. Prepare and visualize yourself speaking in the meeting, completing the project and leading your team with success.
  • Pray and meditate to minimize your feelings of inadequacy. Real “Faith” can be your cornerstone.
  • Seek support, schedule time with me, a coach and mentor, who will hold you accountable and guide you along your path to success.

If you need additional help to work things out, let’s talk!  Contact me to schedule a complimentary session at bit.ly/talktofay.  Rest assured, I will give you the very best assistance available for your journey into the exciting, wonderful and rewarding world of personal success.

 Fay A. Lawrence, MBA, ITF.  She is a Leadership and HR Strategist, Author and Master Trainer.  Fay has been providing human development solutions and change management for more than 20 years at the national and international level in English and Spanish.  Fay works with Fortune 500 companies as well as with Non-Profits and Governmental Agencies.  She is committed to be a support and guide for organizations who want to transform their culture and develop their leadership in order to be effective and relevant in today’s market.  For more information, contact her at flawrence@globalprofilesgroup.com or visit the website at:  www.globalprofilesgroup.com

Elevate your Career, Become the Next Boss Lady

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What does the term BOSS mean to you?  Does the term evoke visions of something positive or something negative?  Do you consider yourself a boss or leader? Before making a decision, consider that a boss in most cases is seen as the leader, the person who takes charge, is in charge, and is an influencer.  Most importantly, a boss is the woman who creates results through teamwork.

 The more I work with women, the more I realize that most of us don’t see ourselves as bosses, leaders or influencers even when we hold positions of power.  We tend to downplay our role to make it “easier” for others to relate and accept.  We pretend not to know that we are the ones leading the household, the office, and our own lives. 

In my role as the “trusted” career strategist and leadership coach, I encounter two types of women: The ones who are overly confident and act like the borderline “b…h”–the type no one wants to be around.  Then, the second one, is the competent, overly nice “one”, who is the go to person for everything in the organization—the type who ends up giving her all, but staying in supporting roles as she regretfully watches others climbing the corporate ladder, leaving her behind.  Years later, she is deflated, demotivated and angry while her teammates observe it all in disbelieve and heavy hearts.  Her bitterness and discontent is a result of her never giving those around her any indication of her aspirations, plans or desires.  If you don’t want to end up in this type situation, you need to express and share your career goals and desires to your boss.

As a high potential woman, with big desires, you have the responsibility to manage your career, your reputation and control your brand.  Yes, you do have a brand and you must become a Public Relations agent for the Brand called “YOU.”  If you are planning to climb the corporate ladder and elevate yourself to become the new boss, then let’s go to work.  Don’t feel discouraged thinking that only the “good ole boys” can reach to the top and stay there.  There is nothing farther from the truth–you can strategize and execute your plan to become the BOSS you were born to be.

As Jesus said, with God all is Possible and if you align your mind and your spirit to the desires of your heart, you can achieve anything.  It may not be easy, but it is possible.  God didn’t put the desire in your heart, if He believed you couldn’t carry it out.

Looking back throughout the beginning of my career, I can see God’s handy work through my journey.  There were times when I said yes to the wrong jobs, but God ALWAYS, found a way to get me out of those situations.  I went from intern in the Protocol Office in the Panama Canal Commission to Executive Vice-president for a Global Organization, and I can say that God always had my back. 

Seven Strategies To Your Shift Thinking Forward and Move You Towards Your Goals:

1.     Understand you! Be mindful of your self-image.  How do you see yourself?  This is the most important clue to your success.  If you don’t believe in yourself, you cannot get that promotion, the increase or your boss’ job–you just won’t get it.  Your mind can make you or break you.  Your duty is to be mindful of the chatter in your head.   Understand your routines and realize not all of your routines are healthy and can be detrimental to your success.  Reflect on the image you present and analyze what you need to start, stop or modify.

2.    Step out of your comfort zone and take on some challenges that will give you visibility.  However, if you’re sure you cannot perform the challenge even at the peak of your abilities, don’t do it.  Look for projects you can excel in.

3.    Give Credit where it is due and show gratitude.  Whenever someone helps you with a project, be humble and thank them for their commitment. 

4.    Help others grow and develop. When you see talent, nurture and celebrate it.  

5.    Be true to your values, this is the cornerstone of your leadership. Know what you stand for, what gets you upset, what’s acceptable to you and what‘s not.  Don’t let your emotions get the best of you.  Understand your triggers and create boundaries.

6.    Welcome feedback, set the example.  Feedback is a gift and you need to be open to this gift.  You should know your strengths and weaknesses but you must also be attentive to the observations of others. Be open to hear about their views of your shortcomings and strengths.  Set the example.

7.    Treat everyone with dignity and respect.  Understand that what goes around comes around.  People will talk to you and treat you, the way you treat yourself.  Show respect for yourself and others will follow.

As the Boss of your destiny and your career, you need to dress and act respectably–manage your brand wisely.  Please understand, that only God knows your heart, the rest of the world can only see how you’re packaged so don’t expect others to read your mind.   If you use these strategies, your journey to the top will be easier ride.  If you have any questions, feedback, or you want our free gift, just mention this article and contact me at fay@globalprofilesgroup.com.

F10409366_10153343055688825_2120688369892497368_nay A. Lawrence, MBA, ITF.  She is a Leadership and HR Strategist, Author and Master Trainer.  Fay has been providing human development solutions and change management for more than 20 years at the national and international level in English and Spanish.  Fay works with Fortune 500 companies as well as with Non-Profits and Governmental Agencies.  She is committed to be a support and guide for organizations who want to transform their culture and develop their leadership in order to be effective and relevant in today’s market.  For more information, contact her at fay@globalprofilesgroup.com or visit the website at:  www.globalprofilesgroup.com

A Business Degree Doesn’t Do Much for Your Resume

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Majoring in business does not improve one’s prospects of landing a job in business — but internships do, according to a study led by John M. Nunley at the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse. The researchers sent about 9,400 fictitious resumes to online job openings in business-related fields, such as finance, management, and marketing. Resumes were randomly assigned one of nine different majors (e.g., accounting, biology, economics, English, finance), and four resumes were submitted to each ad. Resumes with business degrees were not significantly more likely to lead to an interview, but resumes listing internship experience were 14% (2.2 percentage points) more likely to receive an interview request than those without. Internship experience may signal traits valued by employers, such as innate ability or advanced skills, the researchers suggest.

Source: College major, internship experience, and employment opportunities: Estimates from a résumé audit

No Sabes Cuánto Tiempo Tienes, da Gracias, Hoy

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_el Problema es que crees que tienes tiempo_Hace una semana falleció una compañera del colegio, la muerte de Maribel me dejo, perpleja y reflexionando sobre una frase que escuche hace unos meses atrás de mi Coach, que dice… “El Problema es que Crees que Tienes Tiempo.”  Como?  Si, Crees que tienes tiempo… y no lo tienes.  Siento decírtelo, pero tus días y los míos están contados y mañana no es prometido.  Cuando recibí el mensaje que Maribel falleció, me di cuenta, que yo soy una de las que está pensando que tiene tiempo para hacer todas las cosas en mi lista (y es larga).

Con todo esto y al ver que las fiestas de fin de nuevo año están a la vuelta de la esquina, quiero compartir con ustedes este deseo que tengo.

Sé, que Thanksgiving (Día de Acción de Gracias) no es un día feriado, ni celebrado en la mayoría de los países, sin embargo el principio de agradecimiento no tiene nada que ver con el pavo, pero todo que ver con la comunidad, las relaciones de familiares y amigos.

Personalmente es un día para recordar y dar gracias por lo que tengo.  Mañana, al reunirme con mi familia antes de la comida, nos tomamos de la mano y le damos gracias a Dios por las cosas que nos dio en este año, desde los niños hasta los grandes.  Es un ritual que me llena el corazón y me hace meditar de lo maravilloso que es mi vida (con lo bueno y con lo malo).  Esa emoción, me gustaría que durara todo el año y más que nada, me gustaría ver que otros tengan esa experiencia.

Me gustaría proponerte algo, NO, no quiero que cocines pavo, ni jamón mañana.  Te propongo un mes de DAR GRACIAS, un mes de agradecimientos.

Si,  por un mes, del 25 de Noviembre al 25 de Diciembre, toma 5 minutos de los 1440 minutos que tiene un día, para dar GRACIAS por 3 cosas, solo eso.  Sí, das gracias por 3 cosas que tienes actualmente, no lo que quieres tener, ni lo que Dios te prometió para el futuro.

Toma los primeros minutos de la mañana o los últimos de la noche, para dar gracias.  Vas a darle gracias a Dios, cada día por 3 cosas que tienes en este momento (por su presencia, tus manos, tus hijos, no se), oh, al describir las tres cosas, siente el agradecimiento con todas las fibras de tu corazón y de tu ser.  Importante,  las tres cosas deben ser diferentes cada día… no puedes repetir las cosas, cada día deben ser cosas diferentes, si lo sé, no es justo, pero yo sé que tienes mucho que agradecer.  Si quieres escribirlas, mucho mejor, así puedes observar tu crecimiento.

Te prometo, que si sigues estas instrucciones,  veras resultados, luego me cuentas en público o privado.  Feliz Mes de Acción de Gracias

Un abrazo

The Perfect Fit… A Hiring Journey

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Before you start your hiring process, it is key that you assess your own organization.    Hiring is like dating, the person you are searching for, needs to have chemistry with you and the organization.  The person don’t have to be like you, the person needs to complement you.

  1.  Understand the culture of your organization.  What type of people is successful andKilimanjaro what type of people don’t make it.  You have to be brutally honest with yourself.
    1. Know and understand your culture
    2. Know and understand your team and how this person will work with the rest of the team.
    3. Will the person deal with external customers or will this new employee deal only with your internal team.
  2. Clearly define the duties, responsibility and the competencies necessary for the job.  What will you tolerate and what are non-negotiable.
  3. Have a clear description of the type of person you want for the position.  Be descriptive in the ideal person and the personality that is required to be successful in the position.  This will help you when you start the interviewing process.  For example:
    1. Introvert (because, this person will be dealing directly with internal accounts, the position is analytical…)
    2. Need to be comfortable and available to work long hours and weekends.
  4. Decide what you can and what you cannot live without.  Some of my clients will tell me, Fay, I need someone who is a people person; I can train them to do the job.  Clarify the MUST haves and be strategic.  Do you want someone with a lot experience and great people skills or do you want someone who is focused and a solo worker.  Be clear.
  5. If you own a small business or you are an entrepreneur, you should be doing the final interviews yourself, you know more than anyone else what you are looking for, don’t delegate this process.  Remember that your team is the reflection of the owner.  If it’s a large organization, the supervisor should be doing the final interviews.
  6. When you interview, base your questions on past experience and performance vs the future performance.  Ask the person questions about when they performed the duties you are hiring for, this method will give you a better perspective on experience.  Ask them, to “tell me about a situation when you…?”, “how did you react, when?”, “what was your role?”  Then, listen and probe when appropriate.
  7. Interview 3 to 5 people to give you a better scope of the interviewees.  Don’t go for the first person and say that is it!  I found the perfect fit.  Shop around, remember, hiring is like dating!
  8. NEVER FORGET: Hire slowing and Fire quickly.  You will save you and your organization a lot of time, effort and money.

10409366_10153343055688825_2120688369892497368_nFay A. Lawrence, MBA, ITF.  She is a HR Strategist, Author and Master Trainer.  She has been providing human development solutions and change management for more than 15 years at the national and international level in English and Spanish.  Fay works with Fortune 500 companies as well as with Non-Profits and Governmental Agencies.  She is committed to be a support and guide for organizations who want to transform their culture and develop their leadership in order to be effective and relevant in today’s market.  For more information, contact her at flawrence@globalprofilesgroup.com or visit the website at:  www.globalprofilesgroup.com

 

Keeping Employees Happy

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KEEP YOUR Dream Team

Keeping the members of your team happy can be as challenging or rewarding as keeping children happy on a summer day in Coney Island.  It takes focus, hard work and perseverance.  Not everyone is motivated the same way for the same things (or rides).

  • It all starts from the beginning.  Your selection process, hire competent candidates that will fit into your culture and who can work in your environment.  When you hire the “perfect” team member look for a balance between the technical skills, soft skills and culture.  Your selection should bring harmony to the team (even if you are playing jazz or a symphony).  Not all cultures are created equal, a great selection makes the team and the company reviews happy.  A bad selection, becomes painful for you, the new employee and the team members.
  • Know Thy Team members, understand their dreams, desires and professional struggles.  If you know where your team member wants to go, then you help him achieve his desires, you will have a loyal employee for years (since forever no longer exists in this new and changing environment).
  • Show the person the big picture and how she fits in.  If your team members understand how their contributions are key for the success of the organization, they will become productive.  If not, you are creating an unproductive team that will do just enough to get by.
  • Create a culture that celebrates achievement and teamwork.  Productivity is a contact sport, if your team understand their role and how their individual input will help other team members to solve customer’s problems and increase the bottom line, you will have happier employees, eager to serve.
  • Last but not least, financial rewards.  Money don’t make people happy all the time, but it helps.  Individual bonuses are always welcomed, but consider providing team bonuses to enhance a team spirit and ensure real teamwork.

People don’t quit jobs, people quit their bosses!  Create an open door strategy and listen to your people, it will create a culture of understand.  When everything else fails, learn to let go.  If the person is not happy and your culture is not meeting their financial or aspirational needs, let the person go!

Fay A. Lawrence, MBA, ITF.  She is a Leadership/HR Consultant, Master Trainer and Coach.  She has been providing human development solutions and change management for more than 15 years at the national and international level in English and Spanish.  Fay has worked with Fortune 500 companies as well as with Non-Profits and Governmental Agencies.  She is committed to be a support and guide for organizations who want to transform their culture and develop their leadership in order to be effective and relevant in today’s market.

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