April 20, 2021

Burning Bridges

We've heard it since we were kids. It's sage advice, but not always possible in the heat of the moment. I'll tell you a quick story of when I could have burned a bridge, chose not to, and it changed my life completely. 

Over twenty years ago, I was working in an organization going through significant employee reductions. The day came when the envelope was slid toward me on the desk and I was walking to my car with eight years of my career in a box under my arm. 

Life Isn't Fair

I was hurt and angry. I could have called them every name imaginable. My choice was to take a deep breath, force my chin up, and move on with my life. It was incredibly difficult. Three years later, the company called me back and I was there for another seven. 

That original decision not to burn that bridge, propelled me into other opportunities. Most of the other people who were gassed that day, burned the bridge and the river it was on and never worked in the industry again. 

 Lessons Learned

Sometimes we get the short end of the stick and that sucks. But I learned from that experience and many since; if you are a good person and you don't stab people in the back, it will pay back huge dividends. 

I'm working on a project right now that requires me to call numerous people I once worked with, partnered with, did projects with, and I am happy to report they're taking my call. I'm not suggesting every call turns into millions nor am I saying that it's enough to move this project forward on its own.

Your Character Precedes You 

If I had been a complete jerk and burned bridges along the way, those calls would have gone unanswered. Our reputation goes farther than we even know. 

If you're human with people, respect their time, and ask for their advice, you will be surprised what happens. They will help, they will suggest ideas, and they will make other introductions for you. 

If we burn bridges, we better be prepared to do a lot of swimming.

April 6, 2021

Our Brain 1-2-3

It’s often said that we use a small percentage of the potential of our brain. There are things we can overcome, do, create, and accomplish, if we access additional information and abilities within it and ourselves. Teamwork, trust, and collaboration are becoming even more important in the workplace. Competencies are important, abilities are critical, but where companies find success is when the connections between us strengthen.

Tom Wujec is an information designer who explains in his TEDTalk three areas of our brain that help us understand words, images, feelings, and connections and how to better help us understand bigger ideas and possibilities.


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