Category Archives: blog

Lessons on can and can’t

Now and then I take the opportunity to share a post that’s more of a personal story than a lesson about networking, connecting, and other more business-y topics. It’s not that I’m all that interesting; it’s just that I do some things that are more along the lines of….bone-headed. Perhaps even entertaining. Some of these stories may contain a few pearls of wisdom. This is one of those stories.

It was 6:10 p.m. on Sunday evening in early December. I was dressed in a favorite …

By popular demand: networking tips & tools

If you’re reading this it means you’re serious about becoming a more Intentional Networker; someone who’s ready to network better, rather than just networking more. (Who has time for networking that doesn’t work and takes up more of your precious time, energy and resources?)  You’re also ready to be more purposeful, polished, present, and productive as you connect with others. You’re ready to utilize powerful strategies with greater ease and confidence; strategies that actually attract awesome people who are right for you and …

Great news! And you’re the first to know!

Today’s post is so much more than a mere post. And you are among the first to hear about it!

Drum roll please: 

Don’t take the shortcut

Things like this have never made sense to me:  Crash diets. Fitness boot camps. Write-your-book-in-one-weekend seminars. And people who network as if there will be no tomorrow.

Allow me to elaborate.

No shortcutsCrash diets: They just make you miserable. You feel deprived and droopy. Sure, you might drop a size in a day or two. But likely the weight won’t stay off. And you’ve totally messed up your metabolism in the process. Which means you just might gain even MORE weight back. Ugh. Who wants that? …

Unexpected gifts and growth

The other day I received a little nugget of inspiration and encouragement — while I was taking out the trash of all things. It was a Wednesday (a.k.a. Trash Day), and I was struggling to maneuver the stinky gray plastic bin with the noisy plastic wheels through the almost-too-narrow gap between my car and the garage door frame. What made it a ridiculous scene was that I was wearing a dress and heels as I was headed out to a meeting.

I could have planned …

Commitment versus possibilities

Sometimes I have deep thoughts while sitting out on my deck on summer mornings.  There’s something about stepping away from my office and electronic devices and being in the fresh air and “among the trees” (to quote a favorite poet, Mary Oliver). It helps me let go of mental clutter and think more clearly and deeply.

Rocking chair on porch with railing overlooking beach at Bald Head Island, North Carolina.


One thought that came to me recently was a bit of a quandary: Is it better to be totally committed to something? Say, your job? A project? A …

Project Contour Sheet: 9 Ideas to Fold into Your Networking Strategy

Folding a contour sheet recently, a tricky task but a do-able one, make me think of networking.

“Huh?” you ask. “What could folding a sheet have to do with networking?”Fotolia_81490753_XS

Stay with me as I explain.

The contour sheet had just come out of the dryer, so I was folding it (and the rest of the sheet set) so my awesome cleaning lady could make up the guest room bed when she arrived. (I was expecting visitors that weekend.)  Sure, I could have just plopped …

20 tips for making better introductions, connections & referrals

Nothing makes the world go ’round in the business and networking worlds like a quality introduction or connection. And the Queen Mother of Generosity in this realm is the well-thought-out referral.  When done well and thoughtfully, everyone wins. The people/parties connected benefit from each other. The person doing the connecting looks like a hero. And the world becomes a better, more synchronistic place.

But when connections are made with haste, things can go haywire. Businesspeople introducing outside of office, shaking hand, smiling.

You don’t want this to happen to you, right? That’s why …

If we could all be a little more like Kitty

Let me begin by saying that the following passage is not my writing (although, darn, I wish it was!).  It is a passage from a book by American author and director Paul Auster. I included this colorful passage in a handout for one of my recent workshops on Conversation.  As attendees discussed various quotes on the nature and value of good conversation, several agreed that they wish they (and others) could be more like Kitty, the character described below. (I don’t think Auster meant that …

17 Kick ­Butt Ways to Be More Successful, Influential & Engaging

I just woke up from a delicious nap. Not your ordinary nap, mind you. This one was induced by a rigorous spin class at my fitness club, Pure Austin. The instructor, Ryon Talbot, is responsible. And he’s the subject of today’s post, not just because he is an excellent trainer (though I hear the proper term these days is “coach”), but because he also exemplifies a number of traits, habits, and attitudes that more of us could consider adopting as we move through our days, …