Not Sure You Should Be So Career Focused? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
3d ago
Dear Madeleine, I am a young professional woman in the biotech space. I started with one company right out of college and then was recruited away to the company I am with now. I double majored in biology and business, and my company is paying for me to get an MBA right now. I love my job, I love school, and I have big dreams to someday be a member of a team that uncovers new medical approaches with plant compounds. Here is my dilemma: I spend time with my friends from college (not much, because of work and grad school), and the conversation always seems to turn to balancing career and life, n ..read more
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Afraid of Being Labeled a Micromanager? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
1w ago
Dear Madeleine, My company offers a lot of classes, and about six months ago I learned SLII®. I have been managing people for about a decade and honestly, learning SLII® changed everything for me. I realized my biggest issue was that I hold back when it comes to giving people crystal clear direction or providing close oversight when people are starting a new task or embarking on a goal that is new to them. Early in my career, I read a lot about the horrors of micromanagement—and I have always hated being micromanaged myself—so I think I have often over-corrected to avoid ever being accused of ..read more
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Think You Made a Terrible Hiring Mistake? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
2w ago
Dear Madeleine, I recently hired a new member for my team. She was great in the many rounds of interviews, seemed to have the skills we needed, and was unanimously the first choice of the hiring committee. She is now about six weeks in, and I keep waiting to see the person I met in the interviews. She has not completed any of her onboarding training. When I look in our LMS, she seems to have made it through only about 40% of some of the required modules. I have had to show her several times how our Teams site is set up (she was used to the Google Docs system), and she keeps asking questions t ..read more
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Obsessing Over Losing Your Job? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
3w ago
Dear Madeleine, I was let go from my last job due to a massive reorganization. I didn’t like it, but my entire department was eliminated so I didn’t take it personally. I got a new job soon afterward and I like the job and the company a lot. I have been in my new position for more than a year and have recently started to hear rumors about restructuring. I have a growing anxiety about losing my job again. This is not reasonable because I feel pretty secure here, but I can’t stop thinking about it. I don’t normally experience a lot of anxiety. It’s very unpleasant and I would love to know how t ..read more
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Team Member Is Overusing PTO? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
1M ago
Dear Madeleine, I manage a team of mostly young people, all of whom manage internal communications for a global manufacturing company. A few years ago the company went to an unlimited paid time off policy. I have read a lot about the effects of unlimited PTO, and note that the biggest risk is that people don’t take enough time off, whereas in the past they were required to take their PTO or risk losing it. My general approach has been that if your work is done to the expected standard, taking PTO is fine. I guess it never occurred to me that anyone would take off more days than what I conside ..read more
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Procrastinating with a Writing Assignment? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
1M ago
Dear Madeleine, I am a marketing director for a medical devices company. I manage all our social media and speaking engagements, which involves a lot of details and spreadsheets with tasks and tracking results. Part of my job is to conduct interviews with experts and write them up for our website, and to write articles that make the latest research accessible and engaging to our audience of doctors and nurse practioners, as well as the patients who (hopefully) need what we make. My problem is that I block out time to write, and it always seems to get overridden by crises of the day, emergency ..read more
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Questioning the Work Ethic of New Hires? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
1M ago
Dear Madeleine, I read your last blog Not Sure How to Address Burnout? with interest. I work in consulting with one of the big five consulting firms. We hire go-getters and work them hard. The competition is fierce and only the most driven get promoted. The rewards are, shall I say, significant—but I won’t lie, the workload is intense. We never pretend otherwise. We hire kids straight out of the best business schools because we know they’re the brightest and are used to brutally hard work. Yet, in the last few years, I have noticed a lot more complaining about workload. There seems to be an e ..read more
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Technical Genius Needs to Play Well with Others? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
2M ago
Dear Madeleine, I am a regional president for a global financial services company. About five years ago, I hired a whiz kid to inject some creativity and innovation into our use of technology and how we approach our regional customer acquisition. He is technically a genius in terms of IQ, and he excels at grasping key ideas and creating plans to execute them. When he started, he was also very good at creating relationships and influencing people to try new things with a minimum of drama. He quickly rose to be invited to join the leadership team. The projects he has spearheaded have significan ..read more
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Not Sure How to Address Burnout? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
2M ago
Dear Madeleine, I’m a tech founder and have developed a tool called “burnout tracker,” which is embedded into our 1:1 tool. Without going into too much detail, the tracker is able to predict when a support conversation between manager and employee is needed. Here’s my challenge: What is common sense to me seems to be a foreign language to many of the managers using our tool; for example, that during a support conversation, the leader listens to the direct report and provides help where they can. Yes, the phrase “support conversation” is a bit vague. But to me, that’s where the gold is. By sim ..read more
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Not Sure What Innovation Means for Your Team? Ask Madeleine
LeaderChat
by Madeleine Homan Blanchard
2M ago
Dear Madeleine, I work in fashion manufacturing. I was promoted about six months ago. I manage the supply chain, timelines for delivery of goods, etc. I have a huge team and work all hours because I am in western Europe and my teams are in China, Mexico, and Vietnam. When I took the job, things were a bit of a mess, and I am very pleased to have turned things around. I instituted new software and updated processes. We have worked through the kinks and things are humming along nicely. My boss seems pleased with my work but told me the executive team is seeking more innovation in my area. I hav ..read more
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