Category Archives: Building Social Networks

Transition to Transformation: Tip for Navigating Change

 

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The world is moving at a very fast pace. What are you doing to keep in step?
Every day we hear of corporate mergers, downsizing and restructures. What actions are you taking to rewrite your script to ensure you do not wind up on the cutting room floor?

Did you choose to stay home devoting your energy to the betterment of your family and now face a looming empty nest? What will you do with the next chapter of your life?

It does not matter where you turn; work and life are moving at a dizzying pace. People, vocations and emerging technologies are in a constant state of evolution and reinvention. We face a daily backdrop of high alert and digital connection. No wonder Transition and Change Management have become the adopted vernacular to describe daily existence.

How can one cope with a state of uncertainty and a general sense of unrest?
I cannot overstate the importance of creating a strong contingency plan. Why wait till life is on a downward spiral to pick up the pieces and turn life around? Having a strong backup plan is not only practical but can give you the confidence required to leverage and improve your current circumstances.
Would you go on a road trip without a destination, map, gas, and provisions? Would you go back to school without properly researching the program? Do you step into the ocean with your eyes closed and let the first wave knock you over and spin you around? Then why would you do this in life and your career?

Why show up without the proper skills and a well thought-out strategy? What actions and steps can you set in motion immediately to ensure you are ready to face any and all unlikely events or circumstances?

I recently led a round table discussion group at a Leadership Conference on the topic of sharing our most valuable secrets and tips for success. I introduced the concept of having a Plan B regardless of your current work status. There was a member of our table who was incredibly quiet the entire discussion. I assumed they were unmoved by the discussion. I received an email shortly after the discussion sharing how powerful this concept is. They assumed “that if they showed up each day and did a good job the powers that be would give you a promotion and raise”. It never dawned on them that not anyone else is responsible for your development plan and ultimate destiny.

We can all learn from this lesson. Don’t wait for the fork in the road to form a new path. Lay down a purposeful track and let life adapt to your path. Vow to be the best in class and embellish your current role and life. We all deserve to be happy and on purpose. Don’t wait for necessity or catastrophe. Start building today for the future of your dreams.

Here are my Tips for Building a Strategic Plan B

1. Get real!
Take a fearless and honest look at your current circumstances. Are you showing up as the best possible version of yourselves? Is your position and company secured? If your company took a downturn would you be the first to go? Are you doing what it takes to ensure your relevancy?
2. Keep up with the Jones’s!
How current are your skills sets? Are you keeping up with the current technology? Are you raising your hand for stretch assignments? If not get started yesterday.
3. Ready Set Learn!
Knowledge has never been easier to acquire. If you don’t know something, Google it. Want an up to the minute definition, try Wikipedia. There are webinars, audiobooks, podcasts and multiple books on every topic all downloadable to your smartphone. Today you can get an MBA without leaving the comfort of your home! No excuse, stay relevant!
4. Expand your circle.
Network, Network, Network, and just when you think you can’t stand it one more minute, Network some more.
5. Acquire a Personal Board
Times of change are difficult. Your Personal Board will be your Life Line back. They will keep you on track, honest and moving in the right direction. They will become your biggest critics and your strongest advocates all wrapped up in one!
6. Volunteer: Give and Learn
Volunteering is a great way to keep up your spirit while going through turbulent times. Why not volunteer your services in a way that will require you to learn different skill sets? These skills can be leveraged in your current role or added to your resume for future positions.
7. Take a break
I cannot overstate the importance of self-care during times of change. Change is exhausting. You are in a constant state of uncertainty, learning, stepping out of your comfort zone, and all while showing up at your personal best. Eat Well, Sleep, Nap, Take Breaks, Laugh, See Friends, Exercise (preferably outside), Schedule Fun.
8. Take risks
Change is risky business. Going back to school is scary. Learning new technology is overwhelming. Constantly showing up for networking events can be daunting. Creating an on line presence makes one vulnerable to the masses. You know the old adage, no risk no reward.
9. Step Out
Stepping out of your comfort zone is also not easy. I suggest a change of mindset. Think of trying new things as an adventure. You will not like everything, but you never know what will resonate. I think of how empty my life would be if I did not meet all of my great friends through Networking. What if I never took the risk that first Sunday and walked into NYU for my Coaching Certificate? Trust me I was terrified!
10. Get comfortable with discomfort
My biggest life lesson during my transition from running a Sales and Marketing department to heading up Human Resources and starting my business as an executive coach is that anything is possible. I mean anything! We all have the potential to be, do and have anything we want; we just need to be willing to put in the work. I now welcome uncertainty as it is what gives me grit. It is what gives me the gumption each day to show up as the best possible version of myself and never, never, never give up. One can never truly know what lurks around the corner, but I do know I welcome the challenge. I am ready willing and able to do whatever it takes to reach my full potential. I recommend you do the same.

 

“Ode to My Peeps” ……..The Importance of Building Social Networks

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 Some people are like warm hugs; and some events and experiences give us the shot in the arm we need to remind us of what is important.  They keep us on track as we go through our busy lives, and face the challenges of balancing our careers and home lives.

I am a hugger.  This does not work for everyone, but for me it does.  Whether I meet  you in a casual or work setting, I will take the time and energy required to get to know you on a personal level.

 I am also a connector.  If I meet you and we connect, you will quickly become part of my inner circle.  As a member of my inner circle, I will want you to meet my other “peeps”.  You all bring something unique to the party, which needs to be shared and incorporated into the group.

This was a great week for connections, sharing my network, and spending time with my “peeps”.

 Last weekend, I had the pleasure and honor to watch my dear friend walk down the aisle.  She is part of the unique group within my inner circle I call my “Life Line”. 

 My “Life Line”, defined is “a unique group of friends and colleagues that I call upon in any situation, at any time.  I can count on them to be there, no matter what!” Whatever the situation they listen, offer advice, remain objective, and hold no judgments.  They are the “break glass” in case of emergency, hard core, “tell it as it is”, personal board of directors that follow you throughout your life and career.   If you are reading this, you know who you are.

 During the week, I attended a Women’s Foodservice Event, www.womensfoodserviceforum.com, at The Culinary Institute of America.  This offered many unique opportunities to connect.  I started with a two hour drive connecting with my new work partner.  Gave an opportunity to a work mentee to connect and learn from Industry icons.  I got to spend time with and connected my favorite outside agency principles to our new employee, and an organization that means so much to me; and lastly put a face to our talented press release writer!  www.theborelandgroup.com.  This took place even before the event!

During the Regional Connect, I got to network, reconnect with my special friends, and listened to great words of wisdom from Industry icons! Afterward we, www.loveandquiches.com, sponsored a fabulous dinner at the “Culinary Institute”. The energy of the whole event and dinner was charged with both encouragement and warmth, again like a warm hug!

This week I also reconnected with my college roommates at a joint 50th birthday celebration.  I had not seem some of these women in 20 years and It was like time stood still.  The connections were timeless and strong.  I still talk to my childhood friends on a regular basis!

I must also mention my work family.  This unique group of “peeps” form the fabric of everyday with encouragement, teamwork, support and large doses of laughter.

 I am so happy it is fall as it is time to connect with my “neighborhood” peeps.  They are my first line of defense.  They are the day to day, help raise your children, take out your dog, Saturday afternoon nail club, book sharing, early morning walking, birthday dinner celebrating, shop till you drop, 5 am gym rat, afternoon coffee drinking, football widow Sunday movie club constants.  They keep me in balance and remind  me at the end of the week that yes there is a life after work.

I have a wonderful network or friends and colleagues.  Whatever role you play I am grateful to you all.

This week I encourage you all to give a hug, connect to someone on a deeper level, grab a life line, and share your connection with someone else equally awesome! 

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