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Effective Communication

How to Facilitate Good Meetings: My Top 7 Tips

I’ve talked alot about the importance of running a good, efficient meeting, including how to  improve meeting engagement and how to end them well.  But, a good meeting only runs well if it is facilitated well from start to finish. Ever Been in Meeting Hell? When I’m in a poorly run meeting, I get distracted and find myself doing unproductive things like calculating the cost of the meeting (number of participants x approx cost per staff hour x number of hours/minutes). And if I’m distracted, there’s a good chance others are as well which means a whole lot of time

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How to Facilitate an Appreciation Circle

Appreciation

You shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you really mean it. Then you should say it a lot. People forget that. ~ Jessica, Age 8 Studies have found that practicing appreciation can improve relationshps and motivate employees.  It can also increase wellness and lessen stress. In short, regular appreciation will not only boost performance and engagement, but also improve an employee’s health and well-being. There are certainly many ways to show appreciation.One of my favorites to use with a work group is to facilitate an appreciation circle. Getting Comfortable with the Uncomfortable Participating in an appreciation circle can be uncomfortable for some at

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Lisa’s Nest: A Story of Limitless Love

Lisa's Bird Nest

This month marks the 6th year I have walked in Seattle’s SummeRun. My sister-in-law, Lisa, lost her battle with Ovarian cancer 5 years ago.  Our team, Limitless Love for Lisa, walks in her honor with family members and friends, to raise funds to benefit the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research. Our goal is to end this horrible disease. This year our team was a small, but mighty group.  Since some of us only connect annually at this event,  I always look forward to talking and walking with them. This year I walked most of the 3 miles with one of Lisa’s

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Atta-Girl: Why You Should Have an Appreciation Notebook

Appreciation Notebook

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could have access to all the kind words of appreciation and encouragement that anyone has ever said to us? You know, on those days where you wonder why you do what you do, or when life sends a curve ball your way. Or when you just need to be reminded that people do appreciate the work you’ve done. Many years ago, when I was having a bad day at work, a mentor of mine told me about an “Atta-Boy” file he had started.  He collected all the nice emails, cards, awards, sticky notes, and

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Lessons in Communication from the Great Sailing Adventure

Cornerstone Coaching and Training

“If we aren’t careful, we’ll be home ahead of schedule.” ~ Captain Randy While sitting on a deck at a local restaurant, watching the sailboats pass by, I had to laugh.  It looks so simple, so carefree, so unstressful. Just sailing in wind and enjoying the view.  But, I know better.  I remember my first big sailing trip with my cousin “Captain Randy”, and it was anything but carefree.  In my experience, sailing really comes down to this: a lot of (preferrably skilled) work and really good communication. The adventure started when Randy announced at a family reunion that he

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Talk with Your Kids About What They Won’t Learn in School

Cornerstone Coaching and Training

Note: This post was originally Published on the College Savings Plans Network Blog  School may be out for the summer, but it’s the perfect time to teach some financial literacy skills to help your students succeed. Recent research shows why kids need your help: • 62% of college graduates expect to complete school with an average of $27,236 in student debt (The Student Monitor). • More than 19% of American households have college debt (Pew Research Center). • Around 56% of adults don’t have a budget (Nation Foundation for Credit Counseling). • 76% of college students wish they had more

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Clarifying Your Message: Three Steps to Effective Communication

Cornerstone Coaching and Training

I didn’t understand, based on the words that were said. ~ Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion One of the most common communication mistakes we make, and the easiest to fix, is how to better clarify what we mean to say. More often than not, when we communicate, the person we are talking to will not  really understand what you are trying to say. Or maybe they weren’t really listening.  Then they they don’t ask questions to make sure they understand. The result can be misunderstandings, hurt feelings, unanswered requests, and even damaged relationships.  You can increase the understanding by learning three

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When an Interrupted Life Becomes a Blessing

When Life is Interrupted

My husband, Ken, went to the high school to see his last group of former 6th grade band students play in their last concert, while I shopped for our grandson’s 1st birthday. Not long after I had returned home, my phone rang. It was Ken. He wanted me to come pick him up because he wasn’t feeling well. I didn’t think too much of it – probably a tummy or head ache. Then, as I saw him on the curb waiting for me, things slowed down. I could feel life being interrupted. Something wasn’t right. He said he was having chest

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My Mother’s Eyes

Mother’s Day is bittersweet for me.  On one hand, I am blessed to be a mom of two amazing children, a mom-in-law to their spouses I have come to adore, and a Grammy to our first grandchild. On the other hand, my heart aches for my own mom. Mother’s Day reminds me of all of the wonderful memories I have of my mom and it makes me sad for the ones we never got to make. My mom loved to make others happy. She was the most generous and kind person you could ever know. Always knitting, quilting or baking for someone else;

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It’s a Wrap: Ending Meetings Well

Abrupt endings, or meetings that run over and don’t get finished can make for frustration, confusion and quite possibly end in a lot of re-work the next time you meet.  Or worse. It could mean that the meeting was perceived as a total waste of time. So it’s not only important to run your meeting well, but also to end it well. Here are some tips for making sure your meeting met your objectives, added value, and the next steps and follow-up are clear. Good meeting, everyone! Include in your agenda time at the end for the meeting to wrap up.  If

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