Professional Relationships: Quality Trumps Quantity

For more information on building a quality professional network, check out Chapter 8 of the book “FuelForward: Discover Proven Practices to Fuel Your Career Forward“.  Available on Amazon.

“This is a relationship culture, but it’s hard to break in. There’s a closed network of people who have known each other for a long time. Or, because of who you know, you’re let into the circle.” These are some of the comments I hear from professionals all too often. Like it or not, relationships have a lot to do with whether or not you make it through the funnel to the higher level roles. Do you have the relationships you need to help you move ahead of other professionals?  What does it take to be in the circle?

Relationships are an important part of every facet of our lives. They are just as important at work as they are at home.  The need for relationships is human nature. In fact, the need for the sense of belonging and connectedness is one of our fundamental needs – the third level on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.  According to Maslow, we innately long for a sense of belonging and acceptance among our social groups.

Professionally, we call these connections our network.  If you were to describe your network, what would you say? Would you talk about the number of people in your network? Or, would you describe the quality of your network….the connections and relationships you have with people? Continue reading

10 Practices To Help Your Employees Shine During High-Pressure Times

As a leader, you’ve lived through it before — the final push at the end of the quarter or year. It’s all hands on deck to make the numbers in what seems like a wild frenzy to meet customer needs and financial commitments. And don’t forget, the regular work doesn’t stop during this time; you still have to keep up with it.

Your company’s success depends on every employee being “in the game.” How you approach this final push with your employees will greatly influence your chances of success, not only now, but also long term. It’s your chance to step up as a leader. Others will measure you not only by meeting goals but also by how you get there.

10 Critical Leadership Practices 

Following are 10 ideas you can put into practice to help your employees be stars during any high-pressure period. These strategies represent some of the best practices from the world-class companies I work with and from my personal leadership experience.

  • Be clear on your priorities and expectations. There are usually a number of priorities competing for your team’s time and attention, especially at closing. Don’t assume they know what your most important priorities are. Clearly communicate them, including why they are most important at this time, and set expectations around deadlines and deliverables.

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