Category Archives: Soft skills

Are You on the Right Career Path? Ask Yourself These 4 Questions

I just found out a close friend has cancer.  I was shocked by the news.  Although her cancer is highly treatable, it was a complete surprise.  She will need to go through 6 months of chemo and hell to recover.  I share this with you to help you step back from the daily grind and see…

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How to Become an Extraordinary Leader – 3 Unexpected Lessons

When I was nominated for a leadership training at work, I was honored but skeptical I would learn anything substantial.   I am glad however to be proven wrong.  In the last five months, I have learned more about my leadership style and leadership brand than I had ever expected.   Even better, I am already applying…

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Soft Skills Workout – Who is More Confident – Cindy or Jack?

Workout Objective:  A lesson in self-confidence. Prerequisite: None. Recommended Frequency: Just once. Workout steps:  Read the scenario below and vote. Who do you think is more confident in this scenario?  Let’s assume that Cindy and Jack are equally qualified and capable . Well educated – Cindy graduated from Berkeley with a 3.4 GPA and majored…

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What Makes Us Happy & Motivated at Work – Three Ways to Gauge

More than a year ago, I changed jobs and managers within the same company.  I went from having one of the worst leaders I have ever experienced in my career, to having one of the best.  On my first day with this new leader, she asked me a simple question – what make you happy…

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5 Most Common Regrets in Life & How to Avoid Them

Last month, I heard this great talk by Jyri Engestrom, a successful Internet entrepreneur on the topics of happiness.  He said, most people have five regrets in life – all of which resonated with me.  And you probably would agree these are the most common regrets as well.  If so, then I ask you – why…

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How to Ask Someone to be Your Mentor – Dos and Donts

I am republishing this article with new content as my learning on how to ask someone to be your mentor has evolved. 🙂  Hope you will find it useful. We all need formal and informal mentors to help us grow and learn.   Young professionals have more of a need for formal mentors.   Seasoned professionals needs…

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Career Success – When Is the Best Time to Network

Many of us only remember to start networking when we hate our current job or when we are between jobs.  Unfortunately that is the worst time to start networking.  You can come across Negative –  If you are hating your job.  It’s inevitably you will complain about it while networking. No one likes to be around…

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How to Network Effectively – A Simple Framework to Take Action

When I wrote about How to Network without Using Small Talk , I received a lot of email responses and interest.  I am not surprised to hear that most found networking uncomfortable.  I am glad to hear these networking articles are making it a little less intimidating.   I wanted to continue on this journey with you…

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Should I be Working While Sick?

Should I be working while sick?  The answer ideally is no.  If I am sick, I should go home and rest.  Come back when I feel better.  The real world however is not that simple, especially when we are talking about everyday illnesses, such as a cold or a flu. Every time I feel unwell, I debate whether to…

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How I Quickly Recovered from a Workplace Faux Pas – 4 Tips

None of us are immune to mistakes, even a seasoned professional, like myself.  Perfection is overrated.   It is what we do after we commit a workplace faux pas that matters.     This happened two weeks ago.  I didn’t even realize I was committing a workplace faux pas until after the meeting. Here is…

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3 Soft Skills Lessons from Watching “Trolls”

I didn’t think this movie, Trolls, was going to be any good.  Both of my kids love the music in it.   Finally, we watched it last weekend.  I was only half watching it for the first 20 minutes.  It seemed like just a silly, happy cartoon, with lots of bright colors and singing.  …

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The Pain and Pleasure Challenge – Proven Way to Help You Take Action

Are you stuck?   Do you want something badly at work (e.g., promotion, work life balance, better boss, challenging assignment) but somehow can’t seem to take any action toward making it happen?  You are not alone.  Inertia, the inability to do something different from our routine, happens to all of us.  How do you do…

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Lei’s Six New Year Aspirations – Trust, Try, Learn, Evolve, Laugh, Give

I started this tradition last year and really liked how it influenced my decisions and actions the rest of the year.  I am doing it again this year to define my new year aspirations 1. Define ways to build new habits instead of setting goals.  I found this is helping me evolve into a better human being. 2. Post my new…

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How to Write a Good Self Evaluation – Follow 5 Tips

It’s self-evaluation time.  Are you ready to put your best foot forward? This is your chance to put the best representation of your work on permanent record and build your brand. Many people are too humble or too general in their self evaluation.  Don’t fall in that trap.  Being too humble will work against you….

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Happy 2017 – Say Yes

Happy New Year!  Sunday was my annual Hot Chocolate 15K race.   My friend Agnes got me into it 3 years ago.  It’s a great way to start off the year – a long run (9.4 miles) followed by a nice cup of hot chocolate and an amazing natural high all day. Well, I didn’t…

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