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4 things you should be talking about with your boss each week.

How to Use Your Weekly Check-In Meetings to Get Promoted 4 things you should be talking about with your boss each week.
Photo: Charles Deluvio/Unsplash

Every company calls these meetings something different. Whether you call them ‘check-ins,’ ‘touch bases,’ or ‘one-on-ones,’ the goal remains the same across the board. These meetings are a chance to sit down with your boss each week to talk about how things are going at work.

But, beyond that, they are also a massively underutilized career growth opportunity.

If you’re someone who views your check-in with your boss as something that happens every week but isn’t particularly impactful for you, then you’re doing it wrong.

Just because you don’t experience the immediate gratification of their impact doesn’t mean there isn’t…


The difference between coaching and feedback.

This is How The Best Bosses Coach Their Teams The difference between coaching and feedback
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Your boss walks into your office, sits down, cocks his head to one said, and says, “Hey, can I give you some feedback?” How do you feel at that moment? What kind of emotional response does this question elicit for you?

Most of us aren’t particularly looking forward to what comes next. On the contrary, most of us are probably bracing for impact. Perhaps this is because feedback is backward-looking and corrective which doesn’t leave much room for growth, or exploration, or possibility.

Your team is no different. They don’t want feedback; They want attention.

They want you to meet…


I know it’s hard, and I’m here to help.

How to Have a Performance Improvement Plan Conversation
Photo by Marcelo Dias from Pexels

I don’t like telling employees they’re not doing a good job any more than I like being told that I am not doing well. Delivering this news is arguably the worst part of being a team leader. Eventually, the time will come when someone on your team isn’t pulling their weight, and you will be faced with a choice. You can choose to ignore it, compensate for it, work around it, and accept the toll it will take on the broader team’s morale, or you can opt to have the tough conversation.

Spoiler alert — the former always ends up…


The more change we experience, the more resilient we become.

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

More than once, a boss or colleague has commented on my ability to recover quickly from setbacks at work. How did I manage to bounce back so easily, they wanted to know.

I never did come up with a good answer to this question, nor did I have any mind-blowing advice for becoming more resilient or not sweating the small stuff. It was just how I operated.

“The trauma must’ve made me stronger,” I’d quip with a smirk as I sauntered off to my next meeting, leaving them wondering.

Little did I know then that there might actually be some…


How to “eat the frog” and turn procrastination into action

To Be More Productive, Start Each Day Doing the Work You Dread Most
Image: Jeffry Surianto/Pexels

We all have that one thing on our to-do list that always seems to get pushed off until tomorrow. And then the next day, and the day after that. It’s the thing that feels too big, too hard, or, if we’re honest with ourselves, too scary.

And, if you trace back those feelings to the last time you did the same or similar task, you’ll probably find that your aversion to certain tasks stems from our tendency to chase pleasure and avoid pain.

If you’ve experienced the task as physically, emotionally, or psychologically painful in the past — think expense…


Allegations of discrimination, harassment, and misconduct are inevitable in the workplace.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Conducting Successful Workplace Investigations. Allegations of discrimination, harassment, and misconduct are inevitable in the workplace.
Photo by Roland Samuel on Unsplash

Employee allegations of discrimination, harassment, or general misconduct are inevitable in the workplace. At the same time, being asked to conduct an employee investigation yourself can be incredibly stressful. Why? Because the stakes are high, and the ramifications can be significant. Further, most of us don’t conduct investigations often enough to feel entirely confident or comfortable with the process.

The Society for HR Management (SHRM) has defined nine steps for completing a successful workplace investigation. I’ve used these nine steps, along with my own personal experience conducting workplace investigations, to structure this complete step-by-step guide.

But, in the spirit of…


When you brand your all-white talent as the “best and the brightest,” it implies that the best talent is white talent.

It’s become increasingly clear that many organizations who talked a big game about increasing diversity and boosting inclusion efforts haven’t actually put in the work to do so.

There is not a day that goes by where I don’t come across a company sharing a photo of their “rockstar” team made up of the “the best and the brightest talent” in their industry. Perhaps you’ve seen them, too.

Have you noticed what those posts often have in common? Irrespective of company and industry, so often, the only faces represented are white ones.

Perhaps these homogenous groups of people really are the best in the business. …


4 words that changed the trajectory of my career.

Best career advice for anxious achievers
Photo by Siavash Ghanbari on Unsplash

Let’s get one thing out of the way — I am a millennial. And, like most millennials, I’m not a fan of most of the stereotypes that have been given to us.

While I do enjoy a good avocado toast, I’m also a homeowner. I’m not afraid of working hard to get where I want to go in my career, and I gladly take 5am texts and 9pm phone calls from clients. …


A cautionary tale from a current employee’s point-of-view

the downside of new hire sign-on bonuses
Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

The war for talent rages on, and frankly, I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

A client recently inquired about sign-on bonuses for new hires as a way to increase their talent pool in an already shallow labor market. They’re not alone in this. Today the TSA announced that they would offer new hires $1,000 sign-on bonuses, and Amazon is tripling that number at a whopping $3,000 for new hires.

But as much as I’d like to throw money at the problem and increase the number of applicants my clients receive for job postings, my role as an HR consultant


The case for hiring a Chief of Staff for your startup or small business

What Does a Chief of Staff Do, and Does Your Company Need One?
Photo by Sora Shimazaki from Pexels

Before getting into consulting, I spent more than a decade leading HR teams in the corporate world. I worked for companies that had anywhere from 500 employees to 25,000 employees, and these organizations operated in industries that ran the gambit from retail to manufacturing.

I’ve helped executives build organizational structures and subsequently tear them down depending on the needs of the business and how they evolved over time. I thought I had seen it all, but I’ve never worked for an organization with a Chief of Staff (COS) before. …

Jessica Donahue, PHR

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