Archive for ‘Career Planning’ Category



The Secret Sauce That Will Help You Leverage Your Potential

In my first coaching conversation with a client, I ask: “Do you have a mentor, or someone you turn to for advice”? Because… Mentoring is the secret sauce that helps people realize their full potential. Although some people find mentors by accident, many don’t know how to find a mentor.

How to Find a Mentor…

  1. Develop a profile of your ideal mentor: their knowledge, skills, experience, achievements. What impresses you about them? What do they have that you want?
  2. Approach the individual who best fits your ideal profile. Rather than telling them you are looking for a mentor, take a softer approach such as, “From time to time I’m looking for someone to give me some advice about my career and I value your expertise. Would you be willing to meet with me for 30 minutes in the next few weeks?
  3. Share what you would like to learn and their related experience.
  4. Define your expectations about how frequently you want to meet.
  5. Request a second meeting. If they are reluctant, move on to other potential mentors.

If you are interested in learning about mentoring or CORE’s other leadership development services, please contact me, Joan Hill, at (905) 990-2515 or jhill@coreconsultinginc.ca

You can also visit our website at www.coreconsultinginc.ca


How “Interesting” is Your Personality Assessment?

Recently I’ve been researching personality assessments for clients who are looking for something more substantive than tools they’ve used in the past.

After narrowing the list, I tested several, curious to see how they compared with my self-knowledge and other assessments I work with.

A new tool, the Work Personality Index® intrigued me. It measures 21 traits including two that are so important in today’s work place: Dealing With and Managing Stress and Identifying and Managing Change. It also outlines recommendations that help enhance job fit and career satisfaction.

What were my results? During the debrief, I asked the coach what he thought about my report, given that he works with a huge number of coaches and consultants. His response: “interesting.” When I pointed out that that was the term my mother used to tactfully describe something that she didn’t like, (such as my new coif), he laughed and then volunteered that my report was “unusual.”

The good news: my profile is an ideal fit with my work, interests and preferences.

My high scores: Energy, Innovation, Initiative and Flexibility.

My low scores: Rule-Following and Democratic.

No wonder I’ve been happy helping clients learn, grow and develop in ways they never thought possible.

If you’re keen to try out this tool, please call or email me. We have a limited supply of complimentary assessments available this month.

In the meantime, thanks for giving me opportunities to create, challenge and break some rules!


Are You Someone’s Best Boss?

In our Coaching for Results workshops, we ask participants to describe the behaviours of their best boss ever. What did she do that motivated and inspired them to do their best? What specific actions did he take that forged engagement?

The joint work teamwork of two people man and girl travelers help each other on top of a mountain climbing team, a beautiful sunset landscape.Our review of hundreds of responses over the past two years reveals the top 5 behaviours that the best bosses regularly demonstrate:

  1. Opportunities to Grow: Giving employees stretch opportunities to develop new skills and confidence.
  2. Open, Honest Communication: Keeping staff informed, asking high gain questions and actively listening to their input.
  3. Feedback: Providing balanced, constructive feedback in a respectful manner.
  4. Delivering on Promises: Doing what they say they will do, walking the talk.
  5. Caring: Demonstrating interest in staff, not just their results.

For more information about our Coaching for Results workshop or our other leadership development services, please visit: www.coreconsultinginc.ca or contact Joan Hill directly at jhill@coreconsultinginc.ca or (905) 823-3131.


Yes, Build on Your Strengths BUT….

In hundreds of workshops and coaching conversations, leaders have heard me say:E4

“You’ll be more successful and satisfied if you build on your strengths — rather than turning yourself inside out to develop a skill in which you have neither aptitude nor interest.”

Validated by many scientists and management gurus, this is the key message in  the runaway bestseller StrengthsFinder by Tom Rath, designed to help people identify their top five “talents”. Its companion assessment and personal report are very compelling. I found my own results very accurate — although admittedly  I relished the absence of criticism!

BUT (as much as I abhor that word…)

Some individuals have morphed this concept into believing that all they need to do to be successful is find a career or role that plays to their strengths and ignore their weaknesses. Wrong!

Revealed in the 360° results of leaders I’ve recently coached, they’ve had weaknesses such as:

  • Lack of self-awareness: doesn’t know himself/herself well, e.g. impact on others
  • Poor command skills: reluctance to take charge when the going gets tough
  • Coaching direct reports: doesn’t push people to grow, learn and develop
  • Interpersonal skills: poor relationship-building and conflict management skills
  • Presentation skills: lack of audience analysis and ability to manage anxiety

What did the 360° respondents have to say about the impact of these development needs?

They described these weaknesses as career stallers and obstacles to their career progression.

So when I advise my clients to build on strengths I always follow up with this statement:

  • Make sure you know yourself: your weaknesses and your blind spots
  • Determine if these are impacting your current results
  • Validate your perceptions with others whose opinion you value
  • Take action where your weaknesses are negatively impacting your performance/career progression
  • Armed with this knowledge, evaluate future opportunities and roles: What areas play to your strengths? What areas could be a liability? What can you do to mitigate the impact? In what context can you be most successful?

CORE offers customized 360 °surveys, a full suite of leadership development programs and coaching. Please contact us to discuss your needs.

 


Be Career Smart: 7 High Gain Questions to Ask Your Boss

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In my previous blog “Are You Career Smart?” I touched on the importance of getting feedback about how others see us.

Yet getting these revelations is rarely easy. Leaders often struggle with separating fact from fiction, want to dodge conflict or are simply time-crunched.

Instead of waiting for your boss to paint your profile, arm yourself with these 7 high gain questions:

7 Questions to Ask Your Boss About Your Career:

  1. What do you see as my key strengths and major development opportunities?
  2. In what areas do I need to build muscle?
  3. What are my blind spots?
  4. Where do you see me in one year? Two years?
  5. What are the gaps between my current profile and these roles?
  6. What obstacles do you see in terms of my future?
  7. What key message do you want me to take away today?

Listen with your head and your heart. Avoid being defensive or argumentative. Compare this discovery with how you see yourself. Tell your boss how you are going to apply this feedback.

CORE offers career planning and career coaching workshops and one-on-one coaching. For more ideas about how to accelerate your career, call us!