Coach It Out Blog

Professionalism: How Do You Demonstrate It In Your Own Personal Way?

Leadership Lesson: When working toward something, it’s key to balance what we perceive as important in what we want to learn with the value that we already have, making sure not to let go of what is so special about ourselves.

What does it mean to “be professional?”

Last week, I was approached by a recent graduate who had reached out for some advice on how they could build up their professionalism. They had sent me a message based on a presentation I had given on emotional intelligence and leadership in the virtual world and my own coaching experience.

What ensued was a great conversation, with me asking them certain questions to get them thinking about enhancing (and not diminishing) their own value…


Live Through Action, Or Die By Perception. The Choice Is Yours

Leadership Lesson: We should all understand what the differences in consequence are between what happens when we let things happen to us – sitting, waiting, and perceiving – versus when we plan, act, and execute.

Recently, due to our new reality in the era of COVID-19 and the resulting need for so many of us to work from home, I began attending an online group series called #CreateWhatsNeeded launched by Fathom, a future design firm in West Hartford, CT.

The series, made up of ongoing sessions hosted by various professionals from across different fields and backgrounds, provides a broad spectrum of topics and a wide field of attendees/discussion partners. The series topics run the…


Here Are The Parallel Lessons Between A Great Leader And The Musical Conductor

Leader Lesson: From the responsibility to the stakeholders, to understanding what’s needed in the immediate environment and harnessing everyone’s talents, here are the common behaviors underpinning both the leader and the musical conductor.

This week, on LinkedIn, I came across a repost by the official Ted Conferences account (an account of the Ted organization) of an article from 2016 titled What great leadership and music have in common.

The article jumped out at me for two reasons. Well, specifically, two reasons I’m obsessed with. Two reasons I’m a junkie over. Two things that course their way through my life every day.

Absolutely. Every. Day.

Music and leadership.

In general, music is powerful. It…


COVID-19: 10 New Behaviors, Thoughts, And Considerations To Take Away From A Pandemic

Leadership Lesson: Make sure to take away the lessons from adverse impacts and events — even pandemics — especially when it comes to redirecting your development and growth for the better, both for yourself and others.

COVID-19 is still here — and it is not letting up.

As of this post, this is where we stand. Just when we think we’ve become accustomed to a new way of life and that we understand the severity of the situation, the numbers of confirmed cases surge, tripling every few days.

Part of that new norm, aside from those afflicted and their families, is for us to stay home, maintaining limited…


What They Teach Us: Andrew Cuomo And Leadership In A Time Of Crisis

Leadership Lesson: It’s important to take away what we can from the best examples of leadership, even in a crisis, when the leadership can either shine or not.

Where do you get your leadership fix?

Who do you look to who you, if not follow, at least consider dependable, knowing they’re taking care of your environmental, organizational, or, hell, even psychological needs?

Like, who do you look to and think Shit, okay. I know this person is on top of things?

COVID-19 has hit the U.S. (I pray to God there’s no need to include a hyperlink to any background on the virus because you’re well aware and informed of what’s going on.)

(…You know what’s going on, right?)…


What He Taught Me: “Neutron” Jack And The Sense Of Urgency For Action

Leadership Lesson: Keep in mind all that you can learn from a leader — his or her various attributes, approaches, and attitudes — even if you don’t agree with certain aspects of their leadership and/or management. Case in point: Jack Welch and the need for urgency.

Jack Welch, a legend of the business world and former CEO of General Electric, passed away last week at the age of 84.

It was under Welch’s tenure from 1981 to 2001 that GE, a company rooted in the work of Thomas Edison, expanded beyond its traditional businesses of appliances and lighting, growing into the global conglomerate it was known to be at the height of its dominance.

Both the company’s reach and reign in…


The Litmus Test Of Your Greatest Transformational Leaders: What Did You Take Forward?

Leadership Lesson: It’s important for each of us to keep in mind our greatest leaders – the standouts — in order to consider what it was that made them so and how they can inspire us to find, develop, and live our best form of leadership for those around us.

This past week, on LinkedIn, I posted a few pictures of and commentary on the leadership book Lincoln on Leadership: Executive Strategies for Tough Times, which chronicles the best leadership examples and stories of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States. Taking a lesson from…


Share It!: The Power Of Paying It Forward With Your Story

Leadership Lesson: Sharing our personal story with others — not just our technical expertise — can provide some guidance, insight, and hope for those who feel they still have most of their own path left to go, encouraging them to keep their eyes open to the lessons and possibilities in both work and life.

We don’t know what the hell we’re doing. Well, most of us anyway.

Recently, I got to sit on a discussion panel at my alma mater the University of Hartford. I shared the stage as, I guess, the old man with other….fresher-faced (?) UHart alumni – Alexandra, Laura,…


Open Your Eyes To What’s Textbook Today, Or Get An Abrupt Wake-Up Call Tomorrow.

Leadership Lessons: Although leadership development, like personal development, can (and should) be a life-long, deep, rich process, there are basic, common sense lessons you should seek out for whatever you’re getting into.

It’s amazing how many times, when I hear about leaders lacking in how they influence their environment, or not demonstrating even the most basic leadership qualities in their leadership role at all, I think to myself But how? That’s so textbook!

Whether we’re an official leader or not, there are basic building blocks we need to understand for whatever we want to take on. But recognizing, understanding, and building off those blocks can’t begin if we don’t first patiently look at ourselves and seek out the basic tools around us…


Lessons In Loneliness: Look Beyond The Initial Feeling To Learn, Build, And Move Beyond

Leadership Lessons: As with “failure,” a freedom exists in the lessons of loneliness that can remind us to take care of and focus on ourselves first in order to move forward toward fulfillment, satisfaction, and happiness.

The theme and feeling of loneliness came up several times for me this week.

Luckily, it wasn’t my
own.

Instead, it started when I published the blog post When It Comes To What You Want, What Does It Cost To Be Who You Really Are? In it I mentioned that the loneliness of an entrepreneur I had recently met was somewhat of the inspiration for writing the post.

A few days later, I read an article on NPR.org entitled


When It Comes To What You Want, What Does It Cost To Be Who You Really Are?

Leadership Lesson: On the path of development, goals, and hopes, there may be moments when we’ll have to travel alone to achieve what it is we want and decide how much we can pursue alone.

Recently, in a networking group, I was talking to an entrepreneur, exchanging stories and experiences about our paths building our businesses. In sharing the up’s and down’s of the typical entrepreneurial journey, they mentioned the loneliness they sometimes felt because of the disconnection from their friendship circles that resulted from their need to concentrate and focus on their business.

That’s an understandable dilemma — seeking to build something for yourself at the risk of losing those everyday social moments, experiences, or, in the case of some,…


Leave Your Insanity In 2019 And Get Your Plan Right To Have A Happy New Year!

Leadership Lesson: Instead of hard-charging at their goal(s), anyone who is working on getting better and improving themselves should tackle them tactically in a focused manner by considering all their resources.

Here we are in a new year — again!

Is it my advanced age, or do the years just seem to pass us by faster? It feels like it was just a few weeks ago — and not a full year — since our last new year routine, where we left 2018 in the rear view mirror and began working on our new year’s resolutions for 2019.

Speaking of…New Year’s Resolutions. Remember those? Where did yours stand at the end of 2019? How did you do? Oh, you don’t want to…


#SessionConfessions: What Makes You Feel Different Keeps You Aware And Sets You Apart!

Leadership Lesson: Our differences – even the ones we believe set us apart in an adverse way – can be harnessed into great self-awareness about where we stand and how we can get better moving forward. 

We’re all so different. And most of us know it, feel it, and sense it. 

But do we appreciate it? Do we understand its value? Have we harnessed its uniqueness? Do we realize differences are pieces of us that set us apart – and that that can be the game-changer? 

This Inc. magazine article talks about those differences, how different we all are, and, most importantly, who (surprisingly) might feel that way – in the article it’s people we admire as those at the top of their game. Look…


#SessionConfessions: How Much Are You Your Own Worst Enemy, Self-Deceiving Yourself?

Leadership Lesson: In coaching sessions, it becomes apparent that no one should seek out new tools, resources, and ideas for their leadership development without first considering what is currently within their control but which they’re not…controlling.

You’re a very sneaky person — and you don’t even know it.

Typically, when things aren’t working out for us, for the most part, we look to the outside, to the external forces that could be holding us back. But really, there’s nothing out there that can hold you back and undermine you as powerfully as you can yourself.

Yes, you’re sneaky…with yourself!

And like I said, most times, you don’t even realize how much it (or you) works against you.

So, before planning for and tackling those…


What Comedy And Leadership Have In Common That Makes Them Effective – Part 2

Covered In Part 1

Comedy is Setting People at EaseComedy is Having a StyleComedy Can Be a Defense MechanismComedy is Paying Attention to DetailComedy is Knowing Your Audience

Comedy is Gauging Your Audience

Aside from considering in advance what the audience needs or would like to see and hear, comedians need to understand how their material is working out in the moment as they deliver it. Based on how an audience is reacting, it works against their own self-interest if a they wait until the end of the act to make adjustments or pick up their energy. In each moment, they need to keep in mind what the audience is taking away from their act, reading the laughs and energy, in…


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