Posted by: maureen in support, question, help on
Apr 17, 2013
I have a theory about why some of us get frustrated when others get upset.
We don’t know what to do.
I stumbled on something that works wonders in those situations.
“What can I do?” is a magic question, really. It tells someone you’re not only ready to help, but eager to know what would constitute help.
Some people think when the suffering is intense you shouldn’t ask how to help--you should just do it. Show up with a pan of lasagna, for example. I don’t know about you, but the last thing I want to do when I’m feeling down is to eat lasagna--or to add “return baking pan” to my to-do list.
The other night I felt crushed by the weight of several to-do lists. When I admitted that to Darrell and Katie they both said it: “What can I do?” Much of the weight disappeared immediately. My sweethearts were mobilized, and I wasn’t in it alone. Turns out the answer to their question was, “Nothing at the moment. But I’ll get back to you if that changes.”
No judgments. Only support.
Posted by: maureen in help on
Jun 24, 2012
Remember those eight simple rules for finding work you love
? I summarized them when I started blogging, but I spread them out over several posts. Here they are in one place--in my latest Huffington Post post
They might help that recent graduate who could use a pick-me-up, or that friend who’s been out of work for a while and isn’t sure this plot twist is a good thing.
They might even help you feel better, too--for helping!
Posted by: maureen in switch, sound, help on
Dec 7, 2011
So I’d been fussing with a pair of headphones for--what?--three years.
I had to wiggle them until there was sound coming into both ears, had to crank them to hear anything over the static, had to sit a certain way to keep them in place because if I moved out of position I'd have to start everything over.
And yesterday--boom! (so to speak)--just like that, I’d had it. I told my tech guy (read: husband, producer, you name it) about the problem. It took Darrell all of three minutes to fix it.
Why didn’t I ask for help sooner? No clue. Though I’m sure I’ll be chewing on it for a while.
That’s my specialty.
Posted by: maureen in passion, help, focus on
Dec 4, 2011
You travel a lot. You leave your great big dogs with family or friends. That wears thin. You investigate kennels and pet sitters and find them cringeworthy. You decide you can’t be the only person with this problem.
You step up, eventually.
Now you’re running a forty-million dollar business, Camp Bow Wow
. The days are long, and free time scarce. So of course when The Career Clinic
comes calling, you say yes.
“I love helping people figure out what they want to do with their lives,” Heidi Ganahl told me. “I love encouraging them to focus on their passions. That’s important.”
Why do you do what you do?
Find a big enough why, career consultants keep telling me, and you’ll figure out the how.
Posted by: maureen in help on
Apr 20, 2011
"God couldn't do this job."
That's what longtime professional recruiter turned management consultant Howard Adamsky
often tells hiring managers. He isn’t impressed by job descriptions that go on. And on. And on.
"Let me ask you something," Howard will say. "The person you want is probably going to come in every day and do three or four things about eighty percent of the time. Right?" The manager will say, "Right."
"Great,” Howard answers. “What are those things?"
There's your job description.
Now. That wasn't so difficult. Was it?
Posted by: maureen in suggestion, help, care on
Jan 3, 2011
Run a marathon. Plant tulips. Soothe an irate customer. There’s probably something you can do better or faster--or better and faster--than the next guy.
But maybe the next guy doesn’t care.
If you’re itching to give someone advice, wrangle an invitation first. Your suggestions will feel like help, rather than interference.
Not that you asked!
Posted by: maureen in promise, help, focus on
Dec 14, 2010
"You have a master's degree in counseling," the manager of a cremation service told my friend Diana Churchill, balking at the suggestion she answer phones for him.
She asked him to reconsider. "I'm guessing you're looking for a high school grad," she said, “or maybe a college student--someone who needs a little extra income. But that person probably doesn't know how to deal with people who are grieving. If I was on your staff, I could train the others who answer the phones."
Diana guessed correctly at another concern, that she wouldn't hang around long enough for him to bother with her. She promised to give him at least six months, which might be as long as a high school or college kid would last.
Diana got the job. She’d kept her focus--and his--on why she was the solution to his problems. It's like I keep saying--you don't get hired to decorate the place. You get hired to help.
Posted by: maureen in help on
Oct 5, 2010
Need help with your resume? Get someone else to write it.
Not because you’re lazy, but because you’re smart.
Seth Godin elaborates in a recent post.
Posted by: maureen in help, guide, answer on
Sep 14, 2010
You walk into a store. The employee asks if you’d like any help. You say, “No, thanks. I’m just looking.” The employee smiles and walks away--nowhere to be found when you do need help, eventually.
Has that ever happened to you?
I can’t remember the last time it didn’t happen.
Next question. Have you ever thought about how it would feel to be the employee, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, never being taken up on (well, almost never) that offer of help?
Um, not usually. No wait. I take that back. Lately I’ve been softening my answer. When someone asks if I want help I’ll say, “Do you mind if I let you know in a few minutes?” That feels kinder.
Bob Phibbs, author of The Retail Doctor’s Guide to Growing Your Business, says he has a way around this dance that leaves both employee and customer feeling much better about themselves--and each other. I’ll tell you about it in my next post.
Meanwhile Bob has a free quiz you can take that may help you decide if it’s time to fire someone. You might also be interested in his take on Grouponing.
Posted by: maureen in help, fuel, flight on
Jul 4, 2010
I'm afraid to fly--unless my sweethearts are with me. Then I think, hey, if something happens we're all going down together...and I won't miss anything.
I was afraid to admit that on the...air...with Captain Tom Bunn, who helps people overcome their fear of flying--until I heard how hard Darrell laughed. There's just something about copping to what we’re most ashamed of that makes us the most relatable.
I'm less afraid to fly after listening to some of what Tom shares with his clients. "There's nothing holding this thing up!" people tell him, in terror. He reassures them there are forces at work they can't see. Hold your hand out the window of a car going fifty or sixty miles an hour, he suggests, and notice the resistance. Multiply that many times over, add what may as well be rocket fuel for propulsion, and realize there is indeed something holding that airplane in the sky. It’s substantial, and to me anyway, suddenly less mysterious. Tom likens an airplane in flight to a chunk of pineapple in Jell-O. Jiggle it all you want--to simulate turbulence--and that chunk of pineapple isn’t going anywhere.
Have a nice flight!