Many of the conversations I have with clients center on the issue of policies.  Although those policies are important, how the company will apply the policy is even more important.  My experience is that when I asked questions about the policy, it becomes clear that there are particular problems (for employees) that are really the focus of the policies.  Policies can be used to go after certain employees or groups of employees. This is not

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 One of the great challenges for business leaders is working with disabled employees who need an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  The challenge does not center around the business’ lack of desire to work with the employee.  Rather, the problem arises in how to effectively work with the employee to get the accommodation right. The disconnect occurs when the business leader focuses on "providing" an accommodation.  That means to them that they

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CLAIRE CAIN MILLER’s excellent article, “Out of the Loop in Silicon Valley” is a fascinating highlight of the rising role of women entrepreneurs and business leaders. I’ve been studying underdog behaviors and successes–in business, politics and military history–and wrote a book called “The Underdog Advantage” (McGraw Hill). And the reality is the Underdogs are winning more and more in this hard-to-navigate economy: The smaller and hungrier companies, the business leaders who by default play offense

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That’s what he called it – the classical vocal quartet I recently presented at my community outreach Music Kitchen concert series, founded to bring top artists in concert for New York City’s economically disenfranchised. Armand, the bright, friendly interactive young man who was all of maybe 24 and, from what he told me and the journalist from ABC News, had no prior intimate experiences with classical music. He definitely carried a perception, however, as was

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“Never borrow money from your family” is standard advice, and it applies equally to family businesses. Given today’s economy, however, people are needing to borrow money wherever than can find a lender. Banks are reluctant to loan. Credit card interest rates are very high. The economy is stagnant and bleeding from the Gulf oil disaster, from looming new taxes, from federal deficit spending, and from about 10 million workers without a job. Who is not

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It’s not uncommon for children to grow up not knowing their own beautiful thoughts and feelings and their essential needs and wants. You might be asking “How can that be?” Well, it’s one of the ravages of families and the individuals inside them. They are at war with themselves with no one to mediate a peace treaty. In some ways we have no choice in the matter when it comes to which family we arrive

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Marjorie, a Director of Sales in a Fortune 100 company, was given the opportunity to work with an executive coach. This invitation to work with a coach came after her 360 report, which indicated various areas of improvement that needed her attention. Her bosses and direct reports indicated that Marjorie’s communication left a lot to be desired. She was pushy, demanding, controversial, and expected too much for too little in return, from those whom she

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This is my promise to myself. Just because I’m am turning 71, I refuse to do the following: I promise not to grow a beard, mustache, or goatee and think I am hip. I promise not to grow a ponytail and think I am sexy. I promise not to have bushy eyebrows or excess hair coming out of my ears and nose. I promise not to wear plaid shirts or shorts. I promise not to

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Teen parents are always wondering if their teen is lying. The lie seems like a betrayal of sorts, I trusted you and you lied to me. How am I going to trust you again? Here’s the thing, why would they lie? Your teen really wants your approval. Whether you think so or not they are trying not to disappoint you. They’re trying not to disappoint you and by their sheer inexperience and immaturity they make

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You’re getting ready to head out and you ask your teen to get a move on. You hear this growl come from their room, but eventually they make it to the car. Once you get to the picnic, you can’t help but notice how charming your teen is. You’re blown away as person after person walks up to you and complements you on how polite and sweet your teen is. You’re thinking My teen? The

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