Reinventing yourself professionally. Do you need or want to do this?

At some point during your career, you will consider whether the career path you have chosen will be the one you will be on for the long haul. Statistically speaking, you really don’t need to worry too much about this, as most people will change their career direction up to 3-4 times. For some, this might seem impossible, but for others, the number might actually be higher.

The days of working at the same company your entire career are long over, and for me personally, this is a huge relief, as I can’t imagine still being at the same company I started my career. Although I do know one person who is still at that company close to thirty years later.

The majority of people like some change, many have a harder time embracing or seeking out change, especially when it comes to their career direction. If you were to ask ten people how they chose the career they are in, you are likely to hear ten very different reasons. However, the common thread will be that they were influenced by another person to head in that direction.

Based on the fact many people are highly influenced by another person to proceed and pursue a particular career, is one of the reasons why people end up going in another career direction. Having someone else heavily influence your career decision happens frequently, and the people who are doing the influencing have good intentions. Although, most of the influencers are not asking the person enough questions to truly help them to make an informed career direction decision.

So, if you were in a position to give someone advice, or if you need advice on how to reinvent yourself professionally, here are some questions and statements to consider before heading down your new path.

  • What do you spend the majority of your time thinking about which would make your professional direction more constructive and enjoyable?
  • If money were not a concern, what career would be ideal for you?
  • Think about when you were really young. What did you tell other people you wanted to “be” when you grew up? Sometimes our young self is wiser than we give it credit.
  • Have you realistically considered what it will take to change professions? Sometimes doing so might be less drastic than you think it will be.
  • Many of the skills you have acquired are likely highly transferrable to another type of profession or industry. Sometimes changing industries instead of changing careers is much easier to do.
  • Regardless of where you are in your career journey, you are never stuck. You only allow yourself to be mentally stuck.
  • If you have even the slightest interest in a different career or industry, find someone who is in it, and ask to talk to them about how they got into their industry. Or, ask them why they made the decision to pursue the type of work they are doing.
  • Is working for a company or in an industry that gives back to our society, or supports us having a better society important to you? Sometimes when we are misaligned with a company and what they stand for, finding a company you can align with mentally, emotionally and professionally can make an enormous positive difference in your career satisfaction.
  • There isn’t a magic formula for when is the best time to transform your career or self into a new direction. The process is generally a slower moving one, and it will almost feel like one day you are ready to begin the process of making your changes.
  • Planning your new career direction is advisable, and it will make it easier for you to think about the considerations you will need to take into account if your new career direction is going to be potentially disruptive, or requires you to take a cut in pay.
  • Remember, sometimes we have to take a step backwards to go forward. However, this is generally worth it. You will also be afforded an opportunity to learn more when you start at a place that will provide you with additional guidance from others who are more experienced.

When I made the decision to “pivot” my career, I did so over the course of a couple of years. Has it been worth making the decision to change my career path? It absolutely has, as I now feel like for the first time in my career I am doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing. The best thing about the change I made was to see the difference I am making in other people’s lives, and careers based on the work I am doing to support them.

As some of you know, I refer to myself as a “people diamond polisher”.  I am enormously proud of the work I do. The results others get from my decision to pivot my career to focus my talent and attention on helping others, is enormously professionally rewarding.

My wish for you is that you arrive at the place I am professionally, and begin to understand what it feels like to be doing something which is authentically aligned with your talents.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of MarketMe Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, author of Wisdom Whisperer, and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer who has a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging teams (sports & business). What does this do for our clients? It provides them with an acceleration boost to reach their goals sooner, and interact with a renewed efficiency, focus and energy level.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

 

How do I make my company relevant?

No person or company wants to be classified as irrelevant, especially by their employees, customers or prospects. So, what if your company is being classified this way? Would you know this is happening? Would you know what to do to change the narrative and perception others have? These are tough questions, and ones every company has a chance of confronting.

Let’s make the assumption your company is being classified as irrelevant. Now what? Who is responsible for addressing this? Is this a Human Resource challenge? Perhaps, but the person at the top of the organization also is going to have to play a critical role in helping to remedy this label, and they can’t do it alone.

Based on the fact our economy is relatively strong at this point in time, and that employees have many options to consider if they are not satisfied with the company they are aligned with, retaining employees has become a top concern. One of the many reasons employees decide to abandon their present company has to do with relevancy, and whether they feel a strong alignment to the brand, or perhaps the mission of an organization.

Not all companies have the luxury of being easily aligned with a mission or brand that everyone feels compelled to support, and if they do, then they are more fortunate than others. However, this is only one factor to consider. The fact is, many companies were not founded on the principles and desires that employees, customers and prospects are now looking at via a new lens of having the company they work for also be socially and culturally responsible.

So, the real questions to consider are to think about whether your company is relevant, and then if it is not, what can you do to become relevant in the new lens that you are being looked at? Let’s start with these questions and considerations:

  • You first need to define what relevancy means to your company. This should be tackled from all levels within an organization, as you do not want to only have a top down perspective. This could be in fact what originally got your company into the irrelevant territory.
  • If you were to ask your employees what your company mission statement is, would they know what it is?
  • Would your employees feel indifferent to what your mission statement is? Or, would they feel a stronger alignment with your company when they know what it is?
  • Have you asked exiting employees why they are leaving? There could be enormous clues you will uncover if you have this conversation.
  • Do you happen to know the reason most people who have been at your company for more than three years, enjoy working at your company? Do they actually enjoy working at your company, or are they just buying time on their resume to jump to the next best opportunity?
  • How in touch are the top-level executives at your company with the pulse of the company culture?
  • When was the last time any of your executives informally met with or cruised the halls simply to engage in conversation with employees?
  • Are your executives and non-executives getting out in front of customers to have a better sense of what your company can do to make your services or products better? Is this a function you solely rely upon sales or product marketing to do? If so, you have a huge opportunity to benefit from doing this.
  • Is anyone at your company having fun?
  • Do employees seem to get along well with one another, or is there tension throughout the organization?
  • Do you have someone on your staff who you can rely upon to keep a pulse on the organization, who is not in an HR role? Ideally this would be a mid-level manager.
  • How united would you say your teams are? All of your teams, not just your sales, marketing and executive teams.
  • Would you know what kind of plan you need to course correct to make your company more relevant?

Wearing the badge of being irrelevant is similar to a scarlet letter. If you think or know your company is becoming or is irrelevant in any number of categories, there is hope to turn this scenario around. However, if you do not know how to go about doing this, make sure you align with the right type of expert to help you to course correct your direction. Similar to other situations, the first thing which needs to happen is to admit there is a problem, and then commit to addressing and fixing it.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of MarketMe Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, author of Wisdom Whisperer, and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer who has a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging teams (sports & business). What does this do for our clients? It provides them with an acceleration boost to reach their goals sooner, and interact with a renewed efficiency, focus and energy level.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195

Authenticity sparkle. Do you have it?

Not everyone is charming all the time, but those who are both charming and authentic certainly have advantages over others. You know who they are, and you quite possibly could be one of these people. Most salespeople can pull off a version of being charming, but the exceptional ones also do this authentically. Of course, I’m referencing salespeople because this particular career requires them to have what I refer to as ‘authentic sparkle’.

When someone has authentic sparkle, it’s incredibly obvious to others, and yet it may or may not be obvious to the person who possesses this ability. This may sound absurd, but I have seen this phenomenon so many times, I decided to share my take on how others who do not have this combo can either work on obtaining it, or hire someone who possesses it to be on their sales team.

So, the first thing you need to be aware of is the main characteristic traits for authentic sparkle. This is how I would break down being able to recognize them, although chances are you too have recently come across someone with these traits.  This is a limited list, but will provide you with enough clues on how to recognize the signs of this person.

  • When you first meet them, you feel like you have known them forever, or have met them before, but can’t remember exactly when it was.
  • They have the ability to converse on just about any topic you can imagine, with ease and beyond simply a surface level.
  • This is the type of person you want to invite to your next party or family gathering, even if you just met them.
  • They have an uncanny ability to put you at complete ease, even if the situation is stressful.
  • Although it seems unrealistic, you immediately have a sense you can trust this person, but you can’t put your finger on exactly understanding why you feel this way.
  • You want to help this person, even if you do not normally extend help to people you have just met.
  • This person literally makes your day better instantly when you meet them. Who doesn’t want to align themselves with this type of individual?

Have you met someone recently who you could describe as having some if not all of the characteristics above? If you have, what was the experience like for you?

Now, let’s switch gears and talk about how you too could attempt to acquire some of the characteristic traits noted above. These traits do not have to only apply to salespeople, as having a persona type which includes the characteristics above can be beneficial to lots of professions, and can carry over into your life too.

If you are interested in adding authentic sparkle to your life or profession, here are some tips on how to go about doing so.

  • Just be yourself. Seriously, too many people are attempting to be like others, but in my opinion, most people I have met are all pretty incredible in their own unique way. Embrace it, or like my article titled “Embrace Your Weirdness” encourages, don’t be afraid to show others who you really are.
  • Focus more on listening versus talking about yourself. Apply the 80/20 rule, which consists of listening 80% of the time, and limiting your talking to 20%. When you do this, you automatically come across as being more authentic.
  • Commit to once per day doing one nice thing for someone else. Both you and the person you did the nice thing for will add to your what I will call “sparkle bank”. I have also referred to this as your “karma bank”, and essentially, they are similar.
  • Look for opportunities to practice being authentic. If you do not provide yourself with chances to practice being charming, and your genuine self, you are not going to automatically become better at this simply because you want to. Sorry to burst your bubble on this, but it’s true.
  • After around one month of applying these basic tips, see if anyone notices or tells you that you seem happier or more fun to be with. Or, perhaps you will start to be invited out more or included in experiences you were not in the past. If this happens, you will know your authentic sparkle is starting to kick into gear for you.

Whether you want to have more authentic sparkle or hire someone who possesses it, I hope my take on how to go about upping your sparkle will work for you, or allow you to find people to hire which have this trait. One last hint, people who have “Woo” or “Positivity” in their Gallup Strengths Top 5, generally will have the authentic sparkle you are looking for.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of MarketMe Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, author of Wisdom Whisperer, and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer who has a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging teams (sports & business). What does this do for our clients? It provides them with an acceleration boost to reach their goals sooner, and interact with a renewed efficiency, focus and energy level.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

(5) Tips to prepare you for good things to happen

 We all daydream about ‘What If’ fill-in-the-blank happens in a positive way, but what if even a small percentage of the good things you imagine actually happen? Are you ready to enjoy and embrace them? Why is it that it seems some people have an overabundance of good things happen to them?  Are they just luckier than others, or perhaps on a more positive ‘wavelength’ which brings about more fortunate circumstances?

Certainly, some people are better at designing circumstances than others, but some of what happens to us is outside of our control. Thinking positively can have a significant impact on your life. I have personally experienced too many instances not to believe in the power of how thinking and being positive has incredible influence over the situation, and the reverse when I was more negative.

Envisioning positive outcomes can actually influence what happens. Take, for example, how, when you leave your house in morning in a bad mood, how it seems like more negative things turn up along the way – there’s more traffic than usual, your favorite parking spot is already occupied, the person in front of you buys the last muffin at the coffee shop, you show up later than planned . . .

Conversely, if you have a great attitude either in the morning, or any part of the day, doesn’t it seem like everything seems to go much better? You hit all green lights on the way to work, your favorite song is playing on the radio, a parking spot right near the door is waiting, you arrive early, holding your favorite pastry . . . and smiling!

Stop to think about this concept from either a negative or positive perspective, and I will bet you would certainly want to have more of the latter, both at home and at work. You can!  Here are some tips to help you do this.

  1. Check your attitude as you would your pulse either in the morning, or at any point during the day when you find yourself either not thinking positively, or as optimistically as you could be.

 

  1. If your thinking is negative, stop and reframe the situation. Tell yourself the outcome is going to be fine and work out well. You will be pleasantly surprised at how this simple shift in your mindset can bring about a much more desirable outcome.

 

  1. Negative thinking run amok? Literally stop what you are doing; if possible, and step away from what you are doing. Take a deep breath and then breathe in and out ten times to the count of ten on each breath. I’m not sure of physiologically how this has such a powerfully positive outcome, but it has worked wonders more times than you can imagine. Try it!

 

  1. Create a vision board full of pictures, or jot down a few scenarios and think about how you want the circumstances to play out. When these things happen, you will be prepared to deal with them, especially when they are positive ‘What Ifs’.

 

  1. Talk to someone you trust about your ‘What If’ thinking. They might have some phenomenal suggestions that will enhance the experience and outcomes.

 

Being prepared to handle both positive and seemingly-not-so-great scenarios, can serve you well.

I hope the negative ones do not outnumber the positive. If they do, start making sure your positive ‘What Ifs’ are at least a three to one ratio. Having more positive ‘What Ifs’ will make you feel better, and keep you focused on a more pleasant professional and personal life.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of MarketMe Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, author of Wisdom Whisperer, and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer who has a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Her expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging teams (sports & business). What does this do for her clients? It provides them with an acceleration boost to reach their goals sooner, and interact with a renewed efficiency, focus and energy level.

Market Me Too also works with and coach’s individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams she works with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Her coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to her clients, or read through their testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. I know how to help you get them. Contact me at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

 

 

 

What makes you stand out?

Perhaps you have heard the expression, that person really stands out in a crowd. Depending on how you think about hearing this, it could be a positive thing, or perhaps a negative one. I generally look at this as a good thing, with the caveat that the person standing out is not harming themselves or anyone else.

In the US, our culture generally embraces people being unique, or at least accepting or tolerating this at some level. We are fortunate to be living in a country that is more open minded than some other places in the world. However, we also know there are certain places in our country that are more accepting of people’s differences than others.

Consider yourself fortunate if you happen to live in a place that embraces people being different. If you do not live in such a place, you will have to consider becoming more comfortable with your uniqueness, or in an extreme situation, relocate. Let’s hope you do not have to do this, but generally putting yourself in a more positive environment is what we should all be striving to do.

So, what makes you stand out? This might not be something you think about every day. However, it is a good exercise to go through, as it focuses you on the aspects of who you are, how you look at your world, how you approach each situation and perhaps how you want the world to view you. The good news is that there is no one right way to stand out, and I’m referring to standing out as part of what helps to define your personal brand.

We are living at a point in time when self-branding has become something everyone has to consider, not just celebrities and famous people who have professionals managing their image. Whether you engage with social media or not, a large percentage of the population does, and this engagement is part of what directly and indirectly impacts their image, or personal brand.

Since most people are not professional brand managers, they can in fact take on and better understand the aspects of managing a brand, their brand. Ways to do this start with becoming aware of the type of image you are portraying via social media. It’s best to think twice before you post either images or content which can have a negative impact on you. I don’t think I need to spell this out in terms of what the specifics are. However, if you even think for a nano-second and have a hint of doubt about posting something, don’t. Yes, it’s that simple.

Now, if you want to stand out, and do so in a way which is going to be perceived as being positive, then there are numerous ways to do this, and here are some suggestions about how to do so in a way which will not cause you angst, or regret.

  • Before you post content, think about whether the content could be perceived as content which could be hurtful, to anyone. If it is, then don’t post it.
  • Sure, you may think you should be posting all of your social partying images at that moment in time, but I can tell you, images like these have caused people that were going to be hired, to get cut from the list of candidates to hire.
  • If you do any sort of volunteer work, and if it is conducive to showing the work via a photo, by all means, post this photo. This is the type of image which can absolutely help your personal brand image.
  • Perhaps you won some type of award either at work or in your community. It’s perfectly fine to tell others about this, and toss in a photo if the award is something which can be photographed.
  • Share information on your social feeds about others who are doing good things for other people. Give them a shout-out for being good at what they are doing, or because they are doing something positive for others. We need more good news to off-set all the bad news we are bombarded with on a daily basis.
  • If you have a hobby, and it is one you can teach others, consider offering to teach it to others by letting them know you will do this via your social feeds. Of course, you can limit this offer, but simply making the offer is what will help to make you stand out in a positive manner.

Standing out can sometimes have a negative perception, but it doesn’t have to. As a matter of fact, being different and standing out is something we should all become more comfortable with doing. Why? Because at various points in our life, we will need to stand out more at times than others. If we are comfortable with doing so, this will serve us very well.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of MarketMe Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, author of Wisdom Whisperer, and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer who has a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and strengthening teams (sports & business). What does this do for our clients? It provides them with an acceleration boost to reach their goals sooner, and interact with a renewed efficiency, focus and energy level.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.