Career Stretch Zone with Nancy Fredericks Career Stretch Zone Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

Lighting-Up The Gray Areas of Business Decisions

It isn’t news to you that today’s turbulent work environment is in a state of flux—one that charges you with resolving far more problems at an ever-increasing pace. Nor are they the straightforward black and white decisions from the good-old-days instead you’re struggling with shades of gray choices. You live it every single minute of every day!

There are two imperatives for why you should improve your decision-making capabilities no matter the position you hold:

First, is for the profitability of your company. Bain research reveals business decision-making effectiveness correlates 95 percent to your company’s financial performance. Additionally, when following the decision effectiveness of managers and executives, they found 98 percent failed to apply best practices.

Second, is for your job security. One of the distinctions standing between your work responsibilities being outsourced to lower wage employees overseas or technology replacing you is your ability to think, create, and make wise decisions for your organization. Read More→

Negotiation For a Woman Who Wants More

What are you experiencing when facing a negotiation situation? Are you eager? Do you dread the prospect? Or are you like so many who ignore the bargaining opening entirely?

If you’re a woman, “who wants more,” discounting an opportunity to negotiate isn’t an option. While it’s easy to fault organizational policies and procedures for the gender inequity, that isn’t the entire picture. A big piece of the puzzle rests in your hands. I am not saying lack of negotiating is solely the cause of why women earn 79 cents on the dollar compared to men. Or why, despite the fact that women hold 52% of all professional positions, they represent only 14.6 percent of executive officers in Fortune 500 companies. Nevertheless, it does account, in part, for the disparity.

You can turn these statistics on its ears should you choose. Read More→

You’ll Never Guess How High Up In The Organization They’re Talking About You!

Susan’s boss recently disclosed the company’s COO recommended keeping an eye on Joy one of my client’s subordinates. He’s unsure she’s a keeper. This chat regards someone four levels down!

Why the lack of confidence by the COO?

Susan’s employee has a history of changing jobs every two years or so, which to the COO reflects not only a lack of stability but also loyalty.

My client experienced mixed feelings chief of which was gratitude to a boss who is willing to be transparent. However, that isn’t where I want to go with this blog.

I requested Susan close her eyes to mentally travel back in time: “Remember when you held the same position? Would you have guessed how high up in the organization that senior management was discussing you and your future?”

“No!” was her prompt response.

“If you had had any idea, would you have done anything differently?” I inquired.

“Oh yes,” Susan offered with a chuckle. “Without question, I’d have initiated Relationship Building as a focus much earlier in my career!”

I asked: “Has the COO or your boss met Joy?” Read More→

Guess What? Women Still Aren’t Dancing on That Glass Ceiling!

Women, have made incredible inroads in the business world, and yet, there’s still a ways to go baby!

I ran smack-dab into a barrier to female equality when introduced as a pioneer in the field of gender-inclusive leadership for women. That lit-up a response—a negative one—in the heart of a well-respected C-suite leader.

Let’s address a couple of his opinions:

Not all leaders wear blinders on this issue; however, combating such attitudes will aid in realizing women’s inclusiveness.

ACTION STEPS: Read More→

What To Do When Everything Is a Priority… And Still Remain Your Boss’s #1 Person?

Oh, my, gosh, have I been receiving telephone calls from clients all over the country who are overwhelmed by work… work… work with everything on their desk a priority as daily more is piled on. We already know according to Gallup that 4 in 10 Americans say they work more than 50 hours every week, and 2 in 10 more than 60 hours! Then, you have the proliferation of technology such as email and cell phones tying us to the office 24/7—no matter where we are—which adds to the deluge.

What are my executive clients saying? “I’m overloaded. My boss has assigned me a ton of projects, and I can’t see a way to complete them all let alone do the quality job I’m capable of performing. When I ask which assignment has the highest priority the answer is: ‘All of them.’”

Well, isn’t that peachy!? “All of them?” I don’t mean to be facetious; however, I can’t help myself. If everything is a priority, then the reality is none of them are. What’s an overburdened executive to do? Read More→