Are you a manager or curious about taking on a manager’s role? Your company probably expects you to improve your team’s performance, boost your team members’ morale, and coach your employees. You’re asked to wear a lot of hats in working with your team.

But have they trained you on all those skills? Or even communicated those expectations to you? Chances are, you don’t have the tools or training that would make you successful in all of these roles. Think for a moment about all the different “jobs” you have.

The Manager’s Role

Air Traffic Controller

Job description: Assign and monitor the work, coordinate dozens of…

A stone wall with a creeping vine.
We all know a creep when we see one.

Okay, ladies, pull up a chair. I need to tell you something important about bad behavior at work.

You know that one guy you worked with that was kind of a creep? The one who ignored your contributions? Who interrupted you and talked down to you in meetings? The guy you never ever wanted to be alone with because you didn’t trust him. You knew if “something” happened, your word wouldn’t mean much against his.

Maybe you were warned by another woman in the office. Perhaps you pulled another woman aside to warn her about him. “Don’t have dinner with…

Last week, tennis champion Naomi Osaka explained that she would not participate in post-match interviews during the French Open. The pressure of the game was enough. The scrutiny of the press, a fear of public speaking, and a long struggle with anxiety and depression represented a clear and present danger to Osaka’s health. She made her statement, and she kept her word.

The Grand Slam organization fined her $15,000 after her first violation. The rules, they said, “ensure all players are treated exactly the same.” Osaka ultimately withdrew from the French Open for her own health. …

This week, Wells Fargo CEO Charles Scharf told members of his own company’s Black talent group that there just isn’t enough Black talent in the pipeline (and was compelled to issue an apology just 24 hours later). I’ve heard this “pipeline problem” argument from white male executives for years. It’s bullshit. (Scharf’s statement, by the way, came just two short months after an announcement about his commitment to diversity and inclusion.)

It’s NOT a Pipeline Problem

But let’s say, for just a moment that there was a pipeline problem. Let’s imagine that there are only a handful of Black people in the whole country who…

Typically, my articles speak generally to professionals in a variety of roles and industries. Today though, I want to address insurance agents directly.

Why Insurance Agents?

I spent more than a decade working in the insurance industry. Because of this, I appreciate the unique role insurance plays in our society. First, insurance makes all economic investment possible. No one would buy a home or start a new business without a way to manage or transfer that risk. Second, the industry is there for people on their worst day.

Insurance agents are on the front lines of the industry. Agents work to help protect…

Peter Drucker famously said, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” In other words, your strategy will go nowhere if your culture doesn’t support it.

I would take this a step further and say “culture IS strategy.” Any goal that you intend to reach will fail, unless your culture is aligned to that goal.

The Insurance Industry as an Example

If you work in the insurance industry, the purpose of your work is to keep a promise. Whether you work for a carrier, agency, brokerage or service provider, you play a part in fulfilling a past promise made to a policyholder.

Because of this, everything we do has…

Your world is changing more rapidly than ever before, bringing a barrage of industry discussions about disruption, agility, and resilience. Professionals who adapt quickly can seize new opportunities and manage their careers. It’s time for each of us to get comfortable with change.

What Keeps CEOs Up at Night?

Deloitte tells us that 90 percent of CEOs believe their organizations are facing disruptive changes. This is true in your industry, and in every other one, too.

As a professional speaker, I attend conferences in a variety of industries. I hear leaders in every sector of the economy discussing the impacts of blockchain, bitcoin, big data, climate…

I am excited to announce that Lead at Any Level LLC has achieved national recognition as a WBENC-certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE)!

The full press release is available here:

What Is WBE Certification?

The Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) certification is bestowed upon businesses that are owned, controlled, and operated by women in the United States. The certifying organization, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) works with regional partners like Great Lakes Women’s Business Council to ensure businesses meet strict qualification requirements. …

June is “LGBT Pride Month” for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community. Every June, we honor the bravery of Stonewall Inn patrons in 1969, who stood up for their rights against all odds. This act of rebellion, of not staying in the shadows, of refusing to be arrested and beaten one more time, is often cited as the beginning of the Gay Civil Rights Movement.

Learn about LGBT Pride Month

If you don’t know the history of the Stonewall Uprising, I suggest PBS’s American Experience documentary on this topic. It is a well-researched, carefully crafted, and beautifully told collection of first-hand accounts.

Never Stop Learning

Does your résumé need a boost? Sometimes our day jobs provide us with all the skills, training, and challenge we need to grow in our careers. Many times, however, we find ourselves stuck in a routine that limits our growth. Other times, we just want to stand out in a sea of applicants.

Follow these tips if you want to:

  • take on additional responsibility at work
  • compete for a promotion
  • apply to your first management job
  • change careers, companies, or industries
  • enter the job market for the first time or after an extended leave

Add Certifications and Designations to Your Résumé

Industry-specific certifications

There are companies and associations that…

Amy C. Waninger

Founder and CEO of Lead at Any Level LLC and author of Network Beyond Bias: Making Diversity a Competitive Advantage for Your Career.

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