Previous month:
February 2010
Next month:
April 2010

KICK-START YOUR CAREER WITH BPW YOUNG CAREERIST PROGRAM

Wendy Reynolds, Senior Vice President of Flatirons Bank, benefited from winning the Business and Professional Women (BPW) Young Careerist program.  It was a spring board that moved her corporate career forward.  Megan Shellman, founder of Simple Synergy Consulting, will tell you how winning the Young Careerist program in 2008 helped her develop the vision and confidence to start her firm, Simple Synergy Consulting. As the 1986 BPW/Colorado Young Careerist, I personally found support through BPW to successfully pursue my entrepreneurial dream and take the company I had co-founded, Radish Communications Systems, from $0 to where we sold it for over $40M in less than six years. 

 

The Business and Professional Women’s Young Careerist Program highlights and celebrates the achievements of Colorado women between the ages of 21 and 35 who are or have been employed in business or the professions with at least one (1) year of full-time work experience and who support the mission, vision, and legislative platform of BPW.  BPW, founded in 1919, merged with BPW Foundation last year, and carries on the mission to promote full participation, equity, and economic self-sufficiency for working women. BPW has been a leader in passing much of the landmark civil and women's rights legislation of the 20th century. Act now and get involved, here’s how:

 

Spread the word and encourage a young professional to apply.  YC applications are due no later than 5pm on April 2, 2010.  More information at www.BoulderBPW.org

 

Attend.  The Young Careerist Program will take place on April 15, 2010 between 5:00-8:30pm at A Spice of Life Event Center at 5706 Arapahoe Road in Boulder. The public is invited.  Hear five Young Careerists’ inspiring speeches. Participate in a networking exercise and meet others who can help your business (bring lots of business cards)! Connect with exhibitors and sponsors. Raise funds to support women’s economic self-sufficiency. Enjoy good food and fellowship! Participate in the Boulder BPW meeting and learn how you can help yourself and working women.  Register at www.BoulderBPW.org

 

Support Women’s Self-Sufficiency.  The funds raised at the April 15th Young Careerist events will support local non-profit organizations which enrich women's lives through education including the YWCA, Colorado BPW Education Foundation, and other advancement of women programs that fulfill this mission.

 

Participate and Receive Benefits.  Bonni Doherty, 2009 Boulder BPW Young Careerist and Executive Fitness Coach and CEO of BonniWellness, shares, “There are many benefits from participating:  Participants receive opportunities for:

  • personal and professional development through public speaking, resume writing, interviewing, and group interaction
  • networking including meeting BPW members, judges, other candidates, and learning about BPW
  • learning about the issues facing working women.
  • visibility through the media and community for herself and her employer.
  • making a difference.  Participants will be part of a nation-wide network of Young Careerists dedicated to achieving equity for working women.
  • participation in BPW.  Every candidate gets a discount on BPW membership and the winner receives a full one-year membership in Boulder BPW.” 

 

Meet the Judges.  Wendy Reynolds, senior vice president, Flatirons Bank, Jerry Lewis formerly publisher/editor of the Boulder County Business Report, and Sue Deans, retired editor and vice president of the Daily Camera, will serve on a panel to judge the Young Careerist competition. Judging is based on the Young Careerist representative’s career achievements and ability to project an image that reflects the role of today’s young work force in society. Young Careerist representatives are judged on four phases of competition: written biographical information, personal interview, group interaction, and prepared speeches. The delivery of a four-minute speech will be held during the Boulder BPW meeting before members, guests, and the judges. 

 

Become an Exhibitor or Sponsor.  Flatirons Bank is a corporate sponsor of Boulder BPW.  The Boulder County Business Report and www.w3w3.com are media sponsors of Boulder BPW.  The growing number of table sponsors include:  Colorado BPW Education Foundation, Technology and Management Solutions, and many others.   Additional exhibitors include: Arbonne International, Wristicles, Purse Power, and others. Exhibits and sponsorships are going fast, contact yc@boulderbpw.org

 

Support the young professionals in your life.  I hope to see you at the 4/15 Young Careerist program and networking night.

 

Theresa M. Szczurek (www.TMSworld.com and www.PursuitofPassionatePurpose.com)

 

copyright 2010.  All rights reserved.


JOHN MAXWELL ON HOW SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE THINK

Many remember and use Napoleon Hill’s classic book Think and Grow Rich.  Now Dr. John Maxwell, internationally recognized leadership expert, author, and speaker who has sold over 16 million books, reaffirms the importance of thinking in his new book How Successful People Think.  Here are some Practical Pointers.

 

Why You Should Change Your Thinking? Changed thinking is not automatic, is difficult, and is worth investment.

 

How Do You Become a Better Thinker?  Maxwell recommends that you expose yourself to good input and good thinkers, choose to think good thoughts, act on your good thoughts, allow your emotions to create another good thought, and repeat the process.

 

Here is what works for Maxwell.  Find a place to think your thoughts, shape your thoughts, stretch your thoughts, land your thoughts, and fly your thoughts.  Regardless of your circumstances, you can learn to be a good thinker. 

 

There are many types of important thinking skills including: 

  • Seeing the wisdom in big-picture thinking
  • Unleashing the potential in focused thinking
  • Discovering the joy of creative thinking
  • Recognizing the importance of realistic thinking
  • Releasing the power of strategic thinking
  • Feeling the energy of possibility thinking
  • Embracing the lesson of reflective thinking
  • Questioning the acceptance of popular thinking
  • Encouraging the participation of shared thinking
  • Experiencing the satisfaction of unselfish thinking
  • Enjoying the return of bottom-line thinking

 

Think about it and take action.  You can improve your thinking and reap better business and life performance.

 

Theresa M. Szczurek (www.TMSworld.com and www.PursuitofPassionatePurpose.com)

 

© Copyright 2010.  All rights reserved.


SMARTPHONE DEPENDENCE – the Agony and the Ecstasy

What I Learned on Spring Break about How Technology Has Changed Life

 

Getting out of town for Spring Break this year seemed less challenging than my normal routine, which typically includes pulling close to an all-nighter while trying unsuccessfully to finish every uncompleted task. My family and I were all safely on the packed bus on time heading to the airport, when a dreadful question hit me –where is my BlackBerry?  Doing the mental check list, I reassured myself – yes, I have the laptop and its charger; okay, there is the Bluetooth headset with its charger; yep, I have the camera, videocamera, and chargers; and here is the BlackBerry charger and its emergency battery backup charger.  No BlackBerry.  Oh dear! 

 

Ecstasy.  When I moved from a cell phone to a Smartphone, it changed my life for the better – instantly I was able to get all my emails and not have to wait to turn on my laptop, find Internet access, and retrieve the messages (which is what I had been doing).  I could quickly check my Twitter stream and easily tweet.  I could browse the Internet and get access to needed information.  And I could make phone calls with reliable access to my directory and do much more 24/7.

 

Agony.  The challenge, for me and many others, is turning it off and living in the present without constantly checking the addicting stream of electronic information.  My husband is especially sensitive about having me read emails, tweets, and online articles while in bed; to me it seems the equivalent to the hardback book he is reading.

 

Lessons Learned.  What would this trip be like without my Smartphone? Fortunately, it was only six days long.  This is what I learned:

 

  • I became aware of my dependence on my Smartphone.  It makes me so much more efficient.
  • I used my husband’s iPhone when necessary, which he did not like, but overall I was more present in the here-and-now of our vacation.
  • Email communication was much less accessible, so my response time lagged.  When I did get on the laptop (very early or late in the day, after our busy days in Washington DC), I only responded to the most urgent messages.  I still have hundreds of non-responded emails.
  • My office was able to get my BlackBerry to me two thirds of the way into this vacation and it was much easier for me to function then.
  • The world did not end without my Smartphone.
  • Next family vacation, I will truly go off net.

 

Practical Pointers about Successful Living with Technology

 

  • Prepare a written checklist of essential technology to take with you each day, whether on a trip or just doing business
  • Manually review the checklist before you leave for the day – make sure you have what you need, then relax and breathe easy.
  • Agree to proper etiquette with the important people in your life about when/how to use technology and when to turn it off

 

How has your life and performance been improved or high jacked by technology? Want to find out? Try giving your Smartphone up for a few days.

 

Theresa M. Szczurek (www.TMSworld.com and www.PursuitofPassionatePurpose.com)


MANAGE YOUR BUSINESS SUCCESS AT AN OLYMPIC LEVEL: What Lindsay Vonn, Shaun White, and Gold Medalists Know

The 2010 Winter Olympics provide great examples of how the most successful organizations and leaders can achieve greatness by the Pursuit of Passionate Purpose.  Here are five Practical Pointers for your life and work as demonstrated by the best athletes:

1.    Find and Foster Passion.  Lance Armstrong declared, when asked after he won his 6th Tour de France bike race why he had accomplished what no other person had ever achieved, “Passion made the difference.  Passion.”  This fervor releases tremendous energy that propels people forward toward their purpose.  Intense desire, zeal, and enthusiasm—passion—is the fuel that keeps you and your people going. What are you doing to foster passion and keep it burning?  What are you doing that hinders that enthusiasm?  How can you unpack those hindrances from your pack and take them off your back?

2.    Align Passion with Clear Purpose.  Ask the gold medalists, American snowboarder Shaun White or skier Lindsay Vonn, what was their purpose.  The definitive answer would likely be, “Do my absolute best and bring home the gold.”  Top athletes have visualized achieving their purpose thousands of times—in their dreams, meditations, and visualizations. They have a clear purpose and a vision of living it.  Do you and your organization have a clear purpose?  What is your vision?  Can each employee describe that vision in detail?

3.    Pursue Through Participation, Focus, Preparation, and Persistence.  For seventeen magical days, people across the globe are united as Olympic spectators watching great athletic feats.  Yet, you can not live life to the fullest and take your business to new heights on the sidelines. Do NOT be a spectator in your own life and business.

· It takes participation.  Pursue your dreams by actively performing with your whole focused self – head, heart, and hands. It requires courage to fully commit.

· It takes focus.  You must say NO to many things in order to say YES to your passionate purpose.  Many of the winners avoided media coverage in order to concentrate on their true purpose.

· It takes preparation.  Consider the decades of training and sacrifice of so many of the athletes.  Recognize the homework you and your team have done.

· It takes persistence.  Recall how Norway's Aksel Lund Svindal, the skier who was seriously injured at the World Cup in 2007 in Beaver Creek, CO, picked himself up, slowly healed, and continued with determination to come back to win a gold medal in the Men’s Super G in 2010.  You need to continue even when the going gets tough.

Are you and your people fully engaged or are they leaving part of themselves on the sideline? 

4.    Assess Progress.  In Olympic competition, it is well defined what it takes to win.  You must receive the highest score, however it is measured, while following the rules.  This is also the case in work and in life.  However, as organizational leaders you have more influence in determining, based on your own values, how success is measured.  How do YOU define success—is it financial performance alone, or does success also include living true to your highest convictions, having fun along the way, maintaining integrity of effort, and balancing work with the rest of life?  Do you have clearly defined metrics? Do you have regular assessments built into your calendar—monthly, quarterly, and annually? 

5.    Connect with People. The winners do not do it alone.  The best athletes, and business leaders, have many people who support their pursuits—a coach, financial supporters, friends and family, and teammates.  Who is on your support team?  Thank and appreciate them, and give back! 

Not surprisingly, these winning pointers are consistent with the proven “Pursuit of Passionate Purpose” formula for success in business and life. Use them and we'll see you win Gold. 

Theresa M. Szczurek (www.TMSworld.com and www.PursuitofPassionatePurpose.com)