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Category: Career

Match the Right Intensity

If you’ve ever played organized sports at any level, you would have experienced your coach telling you to “match the intensity level” of your opponent. If they played hard in the trenches, you would need to do the same. If they trashed talked after a play, you’d trash talk back showing you aren’t intimidated.

Physical displays of domineering fortitude are commonplace in the athletic field of play and often provide a physiological advantage against your adversaries.

The same can’t be said in the professional workplace or when engaging in entrepreneurship leadership.

Contrary to popular opinion, matching the intensity from a physical or vocal standpoint in the boardroom is more of a sign of insecurity than it is a display of strength.

Stirring you passions away from an emotional reaction, and into making a strategic impact should be the focus. A well developed strategy that highlights the disadvantages or weaknesses of other suggested options (fact based of course) is the best way to match the intensity of your professional opposition.

In other worlds, intensity in the the workplace is more about brains than brawn.

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Take Time to Be Meticulous

When great ideas come we tend to put our focus on the end results. The idea of what we want to see. The picture perfect manifestation of what it should look like.

As is the case since the beginning the 21st century, how fast we can complete something seems to be just as important as completing the project itself.

Our preoccupation with being the ‘first‘ almost always leads us to skipping important details along the way. Or wanting a title because it assumes a specific social status (entrepreneur or CEO) but not being meticulous enough to understand all the prerequisites required.

But that’s just it. As much as we aim to avoid the rat race we still subconsciously compete with one another and over look some of the most important life details that need to be considered.

As I’m writing this I’m 2 months into a new role with a new company. In an effort to prove myself to my new colleagues, jumping into projects and issues before understanding all the specific nuances and inner workings of the company is something I’ve fallen prey to.

Luckily I’ve had support from multiple executive level associates, including my manager, tell me to take time to learn and don’t feel pressured to jump right in, right away.

It’s not just in business or your professional career. In the many facets of life, taking the meticulous approach in all things will provide you with the insight to make better decisions and ones that ultimately will last longer.

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Venturing into the Unknown

Advancement and promotion comes to those willing to venture into uncharted territory.

Taking such a step displays a willingness to fail. To look weak. To feel inadequate and ill prepared to face what’s coming.

It’s also a confirmation to the important decision makers that you’re committed to growing and increasing your value to the organization.

At a deeper more social level, venturing to the unknown can look like being open to objective conversations with those who hold an opposing point of view.

When we continually open ourselves to learn, understand and discover the world beyond the knowledge we currently have, we are saying yes to a richer life experience. Tangibly and metaphorically.

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Personal Career Choices Are Just That, Personal

On the much anticipated ESPN documentary about the championship season for the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls, it was revealed how heavily one player was underpaid.

Scottie Pippen, who was famously known as ‘Robin’ to Michael Jordan’s ‘Batman’, had agreed to a multi-year contract early in his playing career.

When asked why he accepted such an undervalued contract, Pippen reflected back on the need to take care of his large family. Pippen grew up relatively poor and knew he finally had the means to provide for them, especially in the area of healthcare.

After his time with the Bulls Pippen would eventually sign a contract with another team that was more representative of the current market value.

It’s important to note that the decisions we make need to be based on our own personal situations and don’t need to necessarily reflect what’s happening in the marketplace. More money or compensation doesn’t always equate to a better decision or life.

Starting a business, or selling a business. Jumping into management or resigning for something less demanding. Accepting less money for less stress. All decisions are good ones if they are aligned with the internal building principles you live by.

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Autonomy Over Everything

Anyone can be an entreprenuer. But not everyone should pursue entreprenuership.

Social media has glamorized many things, most of all being an entrepreneur. The idea of not having any boss to answer to is of course appealing. But just like many things online we get sold just on side of the story. Driving sales, accounting, product development, marketing, networking, customer trouble shooting, IT and so much more goes into operating a successful business.

I think what some of you really want is autonomy. Read the following definition from

When a group wants to govern itself or a person wants to make independent decisions, they are looking for autonomy. Autonomy comes from the Greek roots auto meaning “self” and nomos meaning “custom” or “law.” This reflects the political sense of the word — a group’s right to self-government or self-rule. When a person seeks autonomy, he or she would like to be able to make decisions independently from an authority figure.

You can experience this at a well-paying job. As a matter of fact, having autonomy in your career before you step out and run your own company is an advantage. You would have experienced what it’s like to work on your own, be personally responsible for your work and make decisions for your self.

Fubu founder and Shark Tank regular Daymond John has expressed on multiple occasions that contrary to what some people think he never quit his day job at Red Lobster to launch Fubu. He kept his well paying job until he was absolutely ready to make the full-time entrepreneurial jump.

If you have the itch to make the same jump, think to yourself if that’s what you really want right now. To be a business owner or have autonomy in your daily work. The latter is a real possibility without having to jump prematurely into the wonderful world of entrepreneurship.

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Your Career Elevation

There will come a time in your professional career when you will desire more. That ‘more’ looks different for everyone. It comes in the form of wanting better compensation. Maybe a more challenging position. Possibly management. Or a whole entirely new field of work.

The journey for ‘more’ is often a lonely one. It’s rare to find someone who will guide you through the exact journey you need to take in order to get to your destination. And even when you do they’re usually around for only part of it.

In his book Instinct, T.D. Jakes breaks this down perfectly.

“Ultimately, this will require you to step out on your own more than follow in the footsteps of others. The higher you ascend on your own unique path, the fewer number of trailblazers ahead of you. Allowing your instincts to guide you will be lonely at times. Others, especially those committed to conformity and comfortable in their cages, may feel threatened as you venture out on your own.”

When you have aspirations to change or ascend, you’ll ultimately get questioned on your motives, possibly even your intelligence. Understand it’s part of the process. Elevating has never been easy, and for good reason. It allows you to appreciate the destination even more.

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