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  • It's all in the timing

    When’s the best time to have a challenging conversation, for you and the other person? Taking care to pick the best time can make a huge difference to the outcome so it’s definitely worth doing. Consider these points for both parties: When are you at your best?When are you likely to be undistracted?What are you doing before and after the conversation and how might this conversation impact that? When someone catches you unawares to discuss a potentially difficult topic, where possible buy yourself some time. Asking them to come back when you’re less busy or have had time ...

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    Will the real you stand up

    Does your online profile match the real you? Does it portray you in the way you want to be perceived? Does it say much about you at all? Social media is such a key way for your prospective clients, leaders or employers to find out about you – so what would they find out? How recently have you updated your photo or meta description? What impression would you want them to give and how does that reflect the real you? Think of 3 things you want to be known for and how you can convey that? How can you add value? What are your core values and how well do they come through? If ...

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    What would you say?

    What would you say if you were asked to give a talk – tomorrow, next week, in 2 months’ time? If your answer would be ‘no’ to any of those, why? What does that say about you? Does it give the impression you would want to give? To help you rethink that, here are some reasons to say ‘yes’: Speaking is an opportunity: To demonstrate your expertiseFor prospective clients to get to know youTo demonstrate what makes you different from others in the same field If you say ‘no’, those opportunities will go to someone else. Saying ‘yes’ indicates your ...

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    How can you make a wider impact?

    Do you let short term discomfort stop you from achieving long term fulfilment? And what are the stories you tell yourself to hold you back? Is there something you want to achieve but are worried about what people will think of you for going for it? If you want a promotion, do you worry about being accepted at that next level? Will people think you’re out of your depth to even apply? Will you be seen as the skilled professional you are or will you be dismissed out of hand? It’s these kinds of thoughts that can hold you back from taking the next step in your career or business. We...

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    Levelling out the gender playing field

    If you’re in one of the key industries or professions where most of the leadership roles are filled by men, even though there may be a more equal number of men and women at the recruitment stage, you’ve probably wondered why that is. You may also have identified some of the reasons behind this: Less women apply for promotionMore men demonstrate leadership potentialWomen often don’t demonstrate sufficient assertiveness to be an effective leaderMen are more willing to share their ideas at meetings. and so on. Have you, though, ever thought about the reasons behind those ...

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    Where do you live?

    Where you live can make a huge difference to your outlook on life to your success. Do you live more in the past, the present or the future? You probably spend time in each of those but is the proportion of time spent in each serving you well? Time spent in the past is fine when you're reflecting on happy positive memories or using past experience to make things better or more efficient for the future. Holding on to the past, to previous ways of doing things, can close you off from new initiatives and hold you back. Knowing how to hold onto what worked well and applying it to the ...

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    Goodies or baddies?

    How many things have you ever done in your past that you would prefer to forget? Have you ever been particularly unkind to someone, whether physically or emotionally? Have you been dishonest in a way you now regret? Perhaps it was something you didn’t do but had promised to. It could even be a pattern of events or a lifestyle from your past that you’re not proud of. You would be very unusual if there’s not something. Whatever it is, you do not need to define yourself by it. It is not the whole of  you or even the essence of you. Similarly you do not need to define other people ...

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    Be a voice, not an echo. Einstein

    This piece takes a look at some different ways of interpreting this phrase. What does that mean for you on first reading it?  For me, it’s about giving your own opinion not just taking on the opinions of others.  In what ways do you do that? What are the things you feel strongly about and are prepared to speak out about and when are you happy to go along with the opinions of others?  To be original on every single issue would be exhausting and maybe even impossible. Being a voice requires time for thought and consideration. Save your energy and focus for the things ...

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    Just one small change

    Just one small change can have a huge impact - but not all small changes make a big impact. So how do you know which one to make? When the big impact comes, we don’t always trace it back to that small change. Instead, we attribute it to luck or our natural ability and fail to see the chain of events that led up to it. Are you someone who’s always open to making small changes or do you tend to see them as not worth the effort, because you can’t see how they could possibly make much difference? Perhaps you’re of the belief that you should only make one small change at a time, so...

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    What causes that hole in your bucket and how can you plug it?

    Perhaps you’re holding onto an out of date negative belief about yourself and your situation. Could it be that deep down you don’t believe yourself worthy of all the good things in your life, that it can’t last forever or that these sorts things are not for someone like you? More often than not, those kinds of beliefs originate outside of ourselves. They’re often conveyed by parents or other family members, either through something they said or just by implication, based on how they lived their lives. These sorts of belief can sometimes be so ingrained in you that you barely know...

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