Recommended reading

Making a successful comeback

This pattern is, thankfully, happening more and more and what’s really great here is her recognising that there are many different paths to success, and many different versions of what success look like.

Mentoring

As she began climbing the corporate ladder Nina Boone, former U.S. leader of sales and acquisitions for Aon, learned that the greatest doors were the ones she couldn’t open by herself. “Winning is never fun alone,” she learned.

She found satisfaction in being a mentor for others and helping them succeed, just as her mentors did for her.
Early on she was told to “Always reach behind and pull people with you and help them grow and develop: That,” she said, “would let me look back on a ‘career well done,’ ” recalled Boone. “I have never forgotten her or that conversation.”

The Secrets of Successful Female Networkers

Quick read

Such an interesting article from Lauren O’Rourke on the HBR on successful female networkers. It reinforces the techniques that we have been discussing at the Insurance Breakfast Club.

How to Silence Negative Thinking

Quick read

Negative thoughts are natural. No one can be positive 100% of the time. Mindset missteps are common among even the brightest, most well-meaning people. It’s simply part of being human but problems arise when your irrational thoughts run amok. They can interfere with your productivity and focus and limit your success.
 
This article shares an effective way to work with negative thoughts is by following a simple mindfulness exercise, ‘aware’, which stands for allow, watch, act, repeat, expect.
 
See also the “Cognitive Distortions” video and worksheet in the Session content from Workshop 4 “Presenting your best self with confidence“.
 
 

4 Ways to Improve Your Strategic Thinking Skills

Quick read
If you’ve ever received feedback that you “need to be more strategic,” you know how frustrating it can feel. To add insult to injury, the feedback rarely comes with any concrete guidance on what to do about it.
This article shares 4 ways you can improve your strategic thinking skills.

 

Now Discover Your Strengths

Key insights

This book was recommended by Louise Day (2019 group mentor).

“Now Discover Your Strengths’ is a follow on and helps you identify your strengths and encourages a focus on developing those strengths and finding people whose strengths complement yours rather than forever failing to be brilliant at things that are just not natural to you (there is a ‘Strengths finder 2.0 that I have not read but I understand is an update of the second book. “

First, Break All The Rules

Key insights

This book was recommended by Louise Day (2019 group mentor).

“This book is about breaking the golden rules of management. It also identifies that management is a highly valuable and seriously underrated talent.”

Why Is Self-Promotion So Hard For Women?

Quick read

Do you find it hard to self promote at work? Studies show it’s the best way to even the playing field & to accelerate your progress, so why is it so hard & what can we do about it? NB: Remember to download the “Non icky self promotion toolkit” from the “Raising your profile” session for quick & easy ways you can start to do this today.

Read the full article here.

Why We Don’t Ask for More Time on Deadlines (But Probably Should)

Quick read

Do you ever ask for more time when you need it? Or do you burn the candle at both ends to get everything done risking burn out?

95% of people who asked for a deadline extension received one, but men ask twice as often as women. 

Encouraging people (& especially women) to ask for more time when they need it, could provide a simple solution to reducing burn out and creating more equitable work environments so worth considering for yourself, and for those you manage. 

Read the full article here.

3 Ways Increasing Your Empathy Makes You a More Effective Leader

Quick read

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella believes empathy is the cornerstone of a successful leadership style & that it sparks innovation. 3 simple tips here to help increase yours 1) practice presence, 2) listen more, talk less and 3) be curious.

Read the full article here.

Key insights

This book was recommended by Louise Day (2019 group mentor) with the comments “This was very much around one of his early tools which is ‘start with the end in mind’, discussing how scrambling to the top of a ladder is fine, but you really need to ensure the ladder is leaning against the right wall. The author says that you should focus your time by thinking about what you want people to say about you (when you die) and use that to prioritise your time.”

Stephen R. Covey shares the 7 habits of highly effective people;

Habit 1: Be Proactive.
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind.
Habit 3: Put First Things First.
Habit 4: Think Win/Win.
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.
Habit 6: Synergize.
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw.

‘The book presents a principle-centered approach for solving personal and professional problems.’ 

What Mentors Wish Their Mentees Knew

Quick read

“Knowing what you need is the first step; finding the right person is the second. Like selecting a partner for marriage, your choice of a mentor affects 95% of your success and happiness.”

Read the full article here.

10 Reasons Why Networking Is Essential For Your Career

Quick read

This article was shared by Sharon Morse who says “I came across this interesting article on networking. I like the paragraph about networking providing you with an ‘additional resource library’ This has been invaluable to me in my career being able to utilise my network and all their knowledge to help me shape presentations, complete projects and to spark creativity.”

Read the article here.

Great Mentors Focus on the Whole Person, Not Just Their Career

Quick read

This article was shared by member Lauren O’Rourke who says “With our recent discussions on mentoring, there is an interesting article on mentoring on the Harvard Business Review I thought I would share with the group. Particularly of interest if you are thinking of mentoring someone.”

Read the article here.

Key insights

Dr. David shares four key concepts:

  1. Showing Up: Instead of ignoring difficult thoughts and emotions or overemphasizing ‘positive thinking’, facing into your thoughts, emotions and behaviors willingly, with curiosity and kindness.
  2. Stepping Out: Detaching from, and observing your thoughts and emotions to see them for what they are—just thoughts, just emotions. Essentially, learning to see yourself as the chessboard, filled with possibilities, rather than as any one piece on the board, confined to certain preordained moves.
  3. Walking Your Why: Your core values provide the compass that keeps you moving in the right direction. Rather than being abstract ideas, these values are the true path to willpower, resilience and effectiveness.
  4. Moving On: Small deliberate tweaks to your mindset, motivation, and habits – in ways that are infused with your values, can make a powerful difference in your life. The idea is to find the balance between challenge and competence, so that you’re neither complacent nor overwhelmed. You’re excited, enthusiastic, invigorated.
Key insights

The physics of vulnerability is simple: If we are brave enough often enough, we will fall. After her books Daring Greatly and The Gifts of Imperfection Brene tells us what it takes to get back up, and how owning our stories of disappointment, failure, and heartbreak gives us the power to write a daring new ending.

Struggle, Brené Brown writes, can be our greatest call to courage, and rising strong our clearest path to deeper meaning, wisdom, and hope.

Katherine says:

I love all Brene Browns’ work, if you’ve not seen her Ted Talks I highly recommend them. This book has a focus on how we can draw on our inner resources to get back up after a knock, some great insights into building our resilience. 

Key insights

This book exposes the data bias in a world designed for men. Activist and journalist Criado Perez (Do It Like a Woman) exposes a persistent and disturbing data gap that contributes to discomfort, poverty, and risk for women

Katherine says:

What I love about this book is all the data! This is not a book about blame or one that pits women against men, instead it is a factual look at hard evidence.

Some insights are shocking (why more women die of heart attacks through miss-diagnosis) and others explain a lot (like why you’re always cold at work). It’s chunky, but worth a read!

 

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