Goals are great, and can inspire you to wonderful things. But I find that people often neglect to answer a critical question: Where are you starting from?

With all my clients, we uncover their goals and visions and possibilities, but then we spend a good amount on their current situation. It’s not about me understanding their challenges.

No, it’s about uncovering resources and limitations, before designing the best next steps to take.

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Diversity is a wonderful thing. Truly, it makes life rich and interesting.

(C) Copyright 2020 choice magazine

Yet, for whatever reason, humans are wired to prefer people who are similar to themselves. I find the juxtaposition of these two ideas to be fascinating … and deeply challenging.

It’s not healthy to have an organization or society where everybody thinks the same. We’ve seen examples where people become subservient to “groupthink” – yielding their individuality to what seems to be commonly accepted. That’s dangerous!

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Last week I contrasted the jobs in a large company to the more collaborative engagement in a startup business. It’s not necessary to be a startup, of course, it’s just easier because that’s where new ideas can take off and flourish.

I had a chance recently to talk with a lady in another country who works for a company which connects global contract workers with part-time roles in larger companies. If you’ve used a remote Virtual Assistant, that’s what I’m talking about.

Sure, that lets you outsource tasks to get cheaper labor. We’ve been doing that for decades. But in this case, there’s a larger driving purpose behind it.

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Get Coached Podcast with Chris Ippolito
Play the podcast here!

I had the opportunity recently to have a great conversation with Chris Ippolito on his podcast. Chris is interviewing a wide variety of coaches, spreading the word about the amazing positive impact that this profession is having in the world!

Check it out here.

Last week I talked about poor Valerie. She’s a solid worker, but isn’t bringing much loyalty or passion to her job. It’s just a job.

Across the street, though, we have a small startup company of 8 people who are now getting traction. It’s a small enough group that they know each other fairly well, so their teamwork is pretty darned good.

And they’re not afraid to embrace new ideas. It’s part of their culture, after all.

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Here’s today’s headline from Gallup’s research: What’s Driving Record-High Employee Engagement in the U.S.?

This great company has been monitoring the trends for many years, so seeing an upward trend in employee engagement is truly important. And a bit shocking, really, after all the bad news we’ve been hearing.

So what’s behind it?

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Valerie has a pretty decent job. She’s pretty good at it, having been in the position for four years now.

It’s not inspiring, but hey, it’s a job.

So how much creativity and productivity do we think she’s devoting to her work?

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The world is made by us and what we do. The challenge is thinking that we’re individually so insignificant that we can’t possibly make a difference.

Here’s the way out of that fallacy: Maybe it doesn’t matter if you change the world, but instead just for one person at a time.

That particular employee. That one customer. Your child. Your neighbor.

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Variety is the spice of life! But we’ve all experienced the paralysis you can have when faced with a list of fifty flavors of ice cream.

As a recovering Analytic, I’ve learned that it’s often dangerous to spend too much time evaluating things. I could probably create a magnificent spreadsheet for the above three smoothies, with options and scenarios and weighted criteria.

That would feed my curiosity, but I’d never make a decision!

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Returning from my holiday break, I experienced a palpable difficulty re-engaging with my work. In one sense, it felt like I had to put on a completely different brain that I hadn’t used for a couple of weeks.

It was a welcome break, and gave me the opportunity to reflect on the bigger picture.

That’s something I love doing with my clients as well – to give them space to get away from the day-to-day issues. To think bigger.

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