Coaching

He Left His Comfort Zone...The Payoff Was, WOW!

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Nine months ago, Tim came to me seeking career clarity and help to develop greater self-confidence. On his own, he had risen to the level of Senior Director but he couldn’t quite figure out how to crack into the “C” Suite.

Tim didn’t know for sure that he belonged in any company’s “C” Suite. After reviewing his unique personal Strengths and his Emotional Intelligence scores, there was no doubt in my mind that he belonged in some company’s “C” Suite.

Tim’s Resume and LinkedIn Profile needed work when we first met, but the bigger challenge was his mindset. By reviewing his Strengths report and his Emotional Intelligence scores, I instantly knew that he had what it takes to not just get to the “C” Suite but he had what it takes to perform at a high-level in the “C” Suite.

Tim possessed Strengths that many technology leaders do not possess and his Emotional Intelligence scores placed him in the realm of a benchmark I work from that represents 250 successful “C” Suite executives.

We worked together in a coaching relationship for 9 months to develop his unique Strengths and to fine-tune and polish his Emotional Intelligence. Tim’s new Resume and LinkedIn strategies generated many “C” Suite interviews with companies that didn’t know precisely what it was that they were seeking.

He interviewed with a company that had fired a previous technology leader who had poor business and people skills. Because Tim knew how to articulate his skills and accomplishments, but more importantly, he knew how to speak from a position of confidence about his unique personal Strengths and his higher than normal Emotional Intelligence, it didn’t take long for a healthy job offer to surface. The offer was significantly higher than his most recent compensation and Tim was convinced that he was being paid for bringing exceptional people skills, soft skills and business skills to the table.

What did Tim do that most people don’t do in order to achieve a result that most people don’t achieve? He stepped out of his own way, out of his comfort zone, in order to get help from someone who specializes in helping high-performing human beings to create their best performance and to excel.

He invested in himself and he took action that most people don’t take. He’s no longer a Senior Director. He’s now a well-compensated, self-confident “C” Suite executive.

 

Jeff Snyder Coaching for High Performers, 719.686.8810

 

 

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Why I Became A Certified Emotional Intelligence Coach in 2013

Strengths Coach, Emotional Intelligence Coach

For the entire year of 2012, I mentored under someone I consider to be an expert in CliftonStrengths™ Coaching. The year I invested under my mentor working with technology-gifted coaching clients was priceless to my development as a Career Coach who leverages the CliftonStrengths assessment in his coaching practice.

I’ve been privileged to work with some of the smartest people on the planet as my coaching clients. Strengths Coaching provides a rock-solid foundation for building authentic, Self-Awareness.

One of my entrepreneur real estate investor clients shared her thoughts after we completed her Strengths Development Coaching.

Without having you by my side, I wouldn’t have left my comfort zone or confronted my fears. Thank you for helping me to develop authentic self-confidence.
— Debbie, Real Estate Investor

Even with sound Strengths Coaching training and experience under my belt, I knew there was something more I could be delivering to my clients to guide them to their future success.  

It was late in 2013 when I ran across an opportunity to work with instructors in Denver who both possessed Ph.D. education in psychology. It was through this mentoring that I was trained and certified as an Emotional Intelligence coach.

When my clients learn their potential Strengths, they discover that when their Strengths are intentional, fine-tuned, and polished, the output from their Strengths is unstoppable.

On the flip-side, when a potential Strength is operating in its infancy stage and it is still an unpolished Trait, the output an unpolished Trait can produce can often result in more harm than good.

This poor performance that comes from an unpolished Trait is often tied to behavior that can be measured by an Emotional Intelligence measurement tool I leverage called EQ-i 2.0. This is a tool that can only be purchased and evaluated by someone who has been trained and certified in the use of the tool.

Emotional Intelligence or EQ (Emotional Quotient) enables my coaching clients to truly discover, develop, polish and fine-tune the best versions of themselves. They know exactly and precisely who they are and who they are not. The deeply understand themselves, how and why they do what they do, and they gain strategies to generate their best performance.

My clients also gain an understanding of how they are coming across to other people. Once they know how they are being perceived, they are in a position to choose behaviors that will enhance their audience’s perception of them.

Combining Strengths Coaching with Emotional Intelligence Coaching is one of the strongest Strategic moves I’ve ever made on behalf of my clients. Not sold on this EQ idea yourself?

This is what Jack Welch had to say about Emotional Intelligence.

No doubt emotional intelligence is rarer than book smarts, but my experience says it is actually more important in the making of a leader. You just can’t ignore it.
— Jack Welch

This is what one of my “C Suite” Emotional Intelligence Coaching clients had to share about his journey towards developing healthy Emotional Intelligence.

You’ve taught me that connecting with people on an emotional level is significantly more effective and more positive than my formerly, pure left-brain approach, of proving my point with charts, graphs, and data.
— Tom, CISO

Why should you want to discover and develop your unique potential Strengths?

  • Once you take the CliftonStrengths™ Assessment, 33,000,000 more people will have to take the assessment before a match to your Top 5 potential Strengths is discovered. You really are this unique! You should discover exactly and precisely how unique you truly are and learn how to articulate what is unique about you in a confident manner.
  • My coaching clients ace interviews. They know exactly who they are and who they are not. The result of Strengths Discovery is crystal-clear Self-Awareness. Psychological research suggests that only 10% of the population possesses accurate and authentic Self-Awareness. You could join this small percentage of the population.
  • People who invest time and energy to do more than just read their Strengths report, people who actually invest in developing their Strengths, learn when to say Yes and when to say No. No more settling for what one CAN do. My clients hold out for what they SHOULD do in order to produce the best version of themselves.
  • The list goes on…

What’s the benefit of discovering and developing one’s Emotional Intelligence?

  • People who possess strong Emotional Intelligence know precisely who they are and who they are not.
  • Emotionally Intelligent people understand what’s going on in their own minds.
  • Emotionally Intelligent people understand how they come across to others.
  • Emotionally Intelligent people learn to strategically adjust the way they come across to others in order to produce more desirable outcomes.
  • Emotionally Intelligent people are equipped to build deep, meaningful, authentic, and trusting relationships.
  • Emotionally Intelligent people can become the greatest bosses their employees have ever had.
  • The list goes on…

One of my Emotional Intelligence Coaching clients said it this way.

You didn’t just change my profession. You changed my life and my marriage. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without your help.
— Duaine, "C" Suite Executive

Who Benefits From This Coaching?

The coaching I deliver to my clients isn’t just for executives. My coaching clients range from 24-years-old to 60-something years old. They’re high performing people who desire to take their personal and professional performance to the next level.

If you’d like to take your personal and professional performance to the next level, Schedule a call with me to discover how.

Jeff Snyder’s, CliftonStrengths Coaching, Emotional Intelligence Coaching, Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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Why It’s So Hard to Take Action 

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Taking Action

Fitness advocates, healthcare professionals, your boss, perhaps even your spouse, challenge you to take action. Does this sound familiar?

Exercise more. Eat Less. Lower your stress. Get started on this project. Paint this room. Perhaps you know you need to do these things but you just can’t get going?

Sometimes, taking action or not taking action equates to inconvenience. Other times, taking action or not taking action can equate to life or death.

Do you personally find it difficult to take action? Care to know why? Keep reading.

Steve’s Challenge

 Recently, I ran into a guy named Steve who described his challenge with taking action like this.

“I know the, I think I can, I think I can approach to taking action,

will never work without a goal and a plan.”

This quote comes from a deeply talented relationship building, communicator. He has so much potential to become more than he is today but he has trouble getting started. His inability to get started is keeping him in his current comfort zone.

Alternatively, taking action to step outside his comfort zone would propel Steve to a level of personal and professional growth he’s never experienced before.

Steve was mostly right in his quote. A goal and a plan to execute by themselves are useless until they are attached to taking action. Apply action to a goal and plan and you have forward momentum.

Activator®

The CliftonStrenghs™ Assessment measures action taking in a trait called Activator®. When the numbers were crunched numbers based on 15,000,000 assessments taken worldwide, .098% of people who took the CliftonStrengths™  Assessment possessed Activator® in their Top 5 potential Strengths.

Stated another way, out of 34 total traits, Activator® comes in at number 29 in overall frequency. That’s frequency of Activator® showing up in a person’s Top 5 potential Strengths.

There are 28 traits that show up more frequently in a person’s Top 5 potential Strengths before Activator® shows up for most people.
 

Go Button

People who are gifted with the Activator® trait have a built-in “Go Button”. These people who possess the courage, confidence and “Go Button” required to propel an effort or project into motion.

People who are not high in Activator® generally have trouble getting things started.

Solution

If you are low in Activator®, find someone who is high in Activator® to partner with to help you get going.

If you possess high Activator®, it is your job to discover, to develop, to mature and to polish your Activator® into a full-blown Strength.

When you take this decisive action to develop your Activator®, you’ll turn it into a game-changing Strength that very few people around you possess. Your Activator® will become a life and career differentiator that sets you apart.

Jeff Snyder Coaching, Career Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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Hey Introvert...Here's a People-Meeting Strategy For You

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THOUGHTS FOR INTROVERTS

What’s the purpose of this article? To give you a people-meeting, networking strategy you can execute even if you’re the shyest person in the room.

REALLY EXCITING ENTREPRENEURS

Not long ago, an entrepreneur attended the most amazing conference he had ever attended. The audience included over 700 entrepreneurs from around the globe who came together to learn a game-changing methodology.

While waiting for the conference doors to open, the entrepreneur began to meet some of the most interesting and stimulating people he’d ever met in his life. Within minutes of the conference hall filling up, the energy created by this unique group of innovative, risk-taking, idea-generating, business-creating entrepreneurs was uniquely evident.

A PEOPLE-MEETING STRATEGY FOR MEETINGS

Having watched posts in a private Facebook group connected to this conference for the two weeks prior to the conference, the entrepreneur knew that many introverted entrepreneurs would be in attendance. The entrepreneur himself was not a social butterfly, but he wasn’t entirely shy either.  He made it his intentional strategy to introduce himself to enough people to generate one new take-home relationship per day.

CRUSHED HIS PEOPLE-MEETING GOALS


He crushed his goal by meeting on average, ten new people per day. If you’re an introvert who is headed to a conference, do you make a point of tapping people on the shoulder and simply introducing yourself?  This entrepreneur did this and he didn’t encounter a single person who was not willing to get to know him.  Tapping a stranger on the shoulder might be the most difficult thing you’ve ever done, but you’re about to learn the rewards the entrepreneur received by initiating conversations.

A TAP ON THE SHOULDER

On the second day of the conference, activity ran from 9 AM to 9 PM. The entrepreneur ’s conference extended beyond the normal conference hours by way of an extended 2.5-hour meeting he shared with one of the most amazing conference attendees who is now quickly becoming a new friend and business partner.

SHAKING HANDS

The entrepreneur’s simple plan formed a connection with another conference goer. This meeting was a simple handshake between sessions. The meeting might have lasted for 3-4 minutes but that’s all. The entrepreneurs were from the US and Germany. These two shy conference goers are about to become business partners as well.

INTROVERTS, THIS IS FOR YOU!

These meetings happened because the entrepreneur took the initiative to tap people on the shoulder who were sitting in the row in front of him for three days in a row. This is exactly what he did and said.

  • He tapped people on the shoulder during breaks
  • Hi, I’m Tom…what’s your name? Where are you from and what do you do?

That’s it! He did nothing more difficult than what you just read. He discovered, by monitoring the Facebook group, that many people who were headed to the conference were anxious about being in a crowd of 700 and thinking that they might be the only shy person in the crowd.

EVERYTHING TO GAIN...NOTHING TO LOSE

If you’re an introvert yourself, there’s nothing to lose when you tap another introvert on the shoulder. They might even be more nervous about meeting new people than you are. Whether they’re nervous or not, forming the intention to meet people, setting goals for meeting new people, and then executing on your strategy is a no-lose proposition.

Not only did the entrepreneur intentionally tap people on the shoulder, he moved from one section to another in the conference venue over the three days of the conference so there would be a 100% chance that he’d be sitting next to and behind different people throughout each of the three days.

ONE MORE THOUGHT

If he’d never tapped shy people on the shoulder and executed a simple get to know new people strategy, the entrepreneur would have never met his new business partners.

It all began with an intention that was acted upon. You, Mr. or Ms. Introvert, can do this too!

Jeff Snyder’s, Self-Confidence Building Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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You Have Potential to Be Great At Something. Don’t Waste Another Moment Operating Without Personal Clarity, Self-Awareness and Confidence.

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Bert Was On A Mission

He was a personal friend. He came to my office for a visit.  Sitting in one of the guest chairs positioned in front of my desk, Bert asked if I’d ever taken a CliftonStrengths™ Assessment?

Yes, Maybe, I think so, was my answer.  Well, did you or did you not take the assessment Bert asked? I think I have the results hidden somewhere in a drawer of my desk. Get them out please, I’ll wait, Bert said. At this point I knew that Bert was on a mission. I just didn’t know why.

I’m about to share my top strengths. Why my strengths? Because it wouldn’t be right for me to openly share any of my client’s private information. If I choose to share my own, that’s different.

FUTURISTIC®

Bert was serious about my assessment results. I did not know back in 2012 what the big deal was surrounding my assessment results, but I sure do now.  Bert began to explain what to me was simply black ink on white paper.  He showed me that I was Futuristic. Futuristic® is a CliftonStrengths™ term that means Visionary.

STRATEGIC®

Wow, the Futuristic® piece of information alone helped me to understand a lifetime of seeing possibilities down the road that others didn’t see. Then Bert explained my Strategic® gift.  He explained that this particular gift is one that a person either has or they don’t have. It cannot be taught. Bert explained how my Strategic enabled me to see the Big Picture as well as paths to get to a future destination that others can’t always see. I quickly began to understand why situations I’d encountered in the past worked out the way they did.

ACTIVATOR®

Bert got to my third Trait called Activator®. He explained how I had a built-in “GO BUTTON” that most people don’t have. To be specific, out of 34 possible Traits, Activator® comes in at number 29 in overall frequency. Only 11% of people out of more than 18 million people who have now taken the CliftonStrengths™ Assessment worldwide have Activator® in their top 5 traits.

MAXIMIZER®

Bert continued on to tell me about my Maximizer®. It was love at first sight when I began to understand that it was in my DNA to not just push good to great but to push for excellence. Once again, I quickly began to understand why I had operated they way I had up to the point when Bert sat in my office, but with no clarity of purpose.

 RELATOR®

Next, Bert talked to me about my Relator®. This Trait as he explained is a very powerful relationship building trait. Most of my relationships are deep, authentic, and trusting. I’ve never been a social butterfly. Now I understood why.

COMMAND®

Bert couldn’t resist telling me about my next Trait. It’s called Command®.  Out of 34 Traits, Command® comes in at number 34 in frequency. Very few people possess this leadership trait.

DEVELOPING STRENGTHS

We went on through my top 12 Traits as I recall. The further we went, the more I understood why Bert had chosen this particular assessment to drive his coaching practice.  This wasn’t the last time Bert and I would meet to discuss my Traits. Bert wanted to see me develop my Traits into full-blown Strengths.

According to the late Don Clifton, the author of the CliftonStrengths™ Assessment, a true Strength is the ability to consistently provide a near-perfect performance in a specific task. When I wrapped my head around this definition, I have to admit that my Maximizer got excited.

Most people who take a CliftonStrengths™ Assessment only learn what their potential strengths could be. They never do what it takes to turn a raw Trait into a full-blown, polished, Strength.

For the next 12 months, I mentored under Bert because it quickly became clear to me that the CliftonStrengths™ Assessment had a strategic place in my own coaching practice. Adopting this tool in my coaching practice was one of the smartest decisions I’ve ever made.

GAME-CHANGING, LIFE-CHANGING, PARADIGM-SHIFTING, TRANSFORMATIONAL, CONFIDENCE-BUILDING

My Career Coaching clients have been achieving life-changing results as a result of the work I do with the CliftonStrenghts™ Assessment and the EQ-I 2.0 Emotional Intelligence Assessment.

If you’d like to learn how my clients are benefiting from the year I invested to mentor under Bert, and the 5+ years I’ve invested into developing my coaching services beyond Bert’s involvement,  I invite you to visit my Career Coaching / Strengths Coaching page on the Jeff Snyder Coaching website.

My clients tell me that the work I’ve been doing with them is “Game-Changing, Life-Changing, Paradigm-Shifting, Transformational, and Confidence-Building”. I’ve never done work that is more important in my life!

 

Jeff Snyder’s, Self-Awareness, Self-Confidence, Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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Self-Awareness Coaching + Emotional Intelligence Coaching + Trusted Advisor Coaching = >$1M in new Sales (Kelly Approved)

Woman Taking Action

 

Kelly is on a Roll!

Kelly (name changed) is a Cybersecurity, IT Risk Management, GDPR Consultant. She introduced herself to me after I gave a presentation on a stage in front of a large audience of her colleagues several years ago.

Kelly came to me for Coaching

  • To find the clarity that showed her what she was uniquely gifted to do professionally.
  • To gain a strategy for getting in front of the right employers to interview for the best jobs.
  • To gain a strategy for Resume Writing and LinkedIn profile optimization.
  • To learn how to present herself with clarity and confidence when she interviewed.
  • To build Self-Confidence and to escape opportunity-limiting comfort zones she’d created in her head.
  • To close the deal with an offer when she found herself in front of the right employer.
  • To deliver the best version of herself in the workplace.
  • To learn how to leverage her unique strengths to become the best boss her team members have ever had.
  • To learn how to fine-tune her emotional intelligence skills with the goal of building deep, meaningful, trusting relationships with superiors, colleagues, peers, subordinates, and customers.
  • To learn to build the relationships that positioned her to earn the right to lead her consulting firm into what is becoming more than a $1M piece of the ongoing advisory services business. Sue isn’t a sales or business development titled professional.

How Kelly is Getting Things Accomplished

By carrying herself with authentic, honest, accurate self-confidence and by crushing fear-based limiting beliefs, Sue has catapulted her career to new heights. As her employer discovers that Sue is naturally gifted to lead, guide, mentor, grow and inspire others, they’ll give her more people to develop. She’ll be promoted soon, and she’ll undoubtedly be earning more money based on her recent breakthrough accomplishments.

Jeff Snyder’s, CliftonStrengths Coaching, Emotional Intelligence Coaching, Trusted Advisor Coaching, Career Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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Why Military to Private Sector Career Transition Is So Difficult

Military to Private Sector Career Transition

Comments from Career Transitioning Professionals

“After 27 years serving in the Army, I have never found anything harder than transitioning from the Army to civilian life.”

“I understand what you are going through, I retired from the Navy in 1997 and the transition was so difficult.”

“The private sector is not anything like the military and takes a little to get used to, but again it just takes time and patience.”

“I’ve sent my resume out over 100 times and nobody is paying any attention to me.”

Why Career Transition Is Challenging

These are the comments that I either see on social media or comments that have come to me directly from people who are struggling to make career transitions. Here are a few steps that will address challenges that exist in career transitions.

CAN vs SHOULD

·        In the military, you may have had some choices with regard to where your skills, training, education, and career were headed, but you likely did not have total freedom of choice.

In the private sector, you can do whatever you want to do. Most people never slow down in their lives to figure out the difference between what they “CAN” do and what they “SHOULD” do. When you enter the private sector, this is your opportunity to finally focus in on what you “SHOULD” do with your life based on your unique giftedness.  People who make this investment find Clarity, Confidence, and Direction.

Translation

·        The work you performed in the military was likely called something different than it is in the private sector. You need to translate your language.

A 25-year non-commissioned army officer came to me looking for help with his career transition. In the deserts of the Middle East, he drove and guided convoys of supply trucks across the desert. These trucks carried supplies, vehicles, weapons, etc. While a corporation involved in trucking in the private sector may not be transporting tanks, they are transporting goods that need to be delivered safely and on time. I taught this military officer how to translate his resume’s language. Doing so led to him receiving calls for interviews for supply chain and logistics positions.

Leadership Paradigm Shift

·        In your military career, you likely led by command and control techniques. You might have possessed more stars and stripes than others. Therefore, when you laid down an order, there were people under your command who had no choice but to respond and take action.

In the private sector, 21st Century Leadership involves building deep, meaningful, authentic, trusting relationships. Trust must be earned. It is not mandated. In order to attract and to retain talent, 21st Century Leaders must learn to coach, inspire, grow, mentor, and develop employees. Private sector employees can leave and find another job at any time. A different leadership approach is required in the private sector.

A New Resume Strategy

·        You may have been taught to write a government resume that stretches to 5-10+ pages. In the private sector, you have a matter of seconds for a gatekeeper to find a reason to slow down to read your resume. You need to execute a different strategy to achieve a different result.

A clean, clear, logical resume that is built with the resume owner’s new audience in mind, wins. Most resumes are built with the resume’s owner in mind. This approach requires a paradigm shift to implement a different strategy if one wishes to achieve a different result. If your current resume hasn’t generated desired results in 20 tries, you’ll likely get the same resume results when you try 50 times and even 100 times. You need a different strategy.

This is a very short list built to demonstrate just a few of the paradigm shift challenges that exist when one leaves a military career to enter the private sector.

Jeff Snyder’s, Career Transition Coaching, Career Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

 

 

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Outside In or Inside Out…Which Career Development Approach is Better?

Career Development

Outside In or Inside Out?

Most people I’ve met over nearly three decades of recruiting seem to choose a profession and a career path to follow before they determine exactly who they are, how they’re built and how they are uniquely gifted. I’ll call this Self-Awareness. Self-Awareness leads to Clarity.

When a career path decision is made correctly, a person is positioned to deliver the best possible version of themselves to everyone around them.

When this decision is not made correctly, people are promoted to levels where the technical skills that got them to a certain level of engineering or architectural accomplishment are no longer enough to achieve the same level of success as they continue to rise in an organization.

As promotions occur, and as promotions are achieved, required skills change. These new roles require people skills, exceptional communication skills, soft skills, influencing, empathy, humility, negotiating, persuasion, collaboration, partnering skills, and more.

Outside In

For those who chose or stumbled into what is now Cybersecurity, early on, it was like stepping into the “Wild West”. Judging from the multitude of Cybersecurity job descriptions I see on a daily basis, the “Wild West” analogy fits quite well.

Employers rarely know what they're doing when hiring Cybersecurity talent. Cybersecurity professionals deliver communication to their audience that does not align with the way their audience communicates.

By jumping into the water and catching a fast-rising wave, many brilliant Cybersecurity technologists were promoted to Manager, Director, Vice President, and CISO titles. While this might appear to be a great accomplishment on the surface, it might not be such a great accomplishment after all.

The high-IQ driven, cognitive intelligence, analytical, linear thinking skills that cause a person to be great at addressing hardcore cyber technology issues are not the skills generally required for success at the Manager, Director, Vice President or CISO levels.

Inside Out

A better approach to choosing a career path begins with gaining a clear picture of who you are and what your unique giftedness translates into. Are you gifted to lead, guide, manage, mentor, and influence others? If you are, you may have what it takes to be someone’s outstanding boss. For most people, these skills don't come naturally but they can be developed.

On the other hand, if your unique giftedness is made of strategic thinking skills that reside in your head where nobody else can see them or experience them, you’re most likely gifted to be a great technologist or technology architect.

Finding out how you are uniquely wired is the key to knowing whether you should go straight, turn left or turn right at a various point in your career path.

Peter Principle

“The Peter Principle is a concept in management theory formulated by educator Laurence J. Peter and was published in 1969. It states that the selection of a candidate for a position is based on the candidate's performance in their current role, rather than on abilities relevant to the intended role. Thus, employees only stop being promoted once they can no longer perform effectively, and "managers rise to the level of their incompetence".

The Peter Principle runs wild in the “Wild West” of Cybersecurity. You owe it to yourself to discover what you are naturally built to be great at. You’ll appreciate what you can accomplish when you align your natural giftedness with your chosen work and so will those around you.

Change Your Life Today

Cybersecurity professionals come to me on a daily basis with questions. It seems that in many cases, they don’t know when to go straight, when to turn left or when to turn right.

Nothing is more satisfying to me than to help a person who sincerely wants to know, to determine how they are uniquely gifted so I can map their unique giftedness towards the right career path.

Choosing the right career path has potential to result in greater job satisfaction, higher earning potential, improved productivity, improved relationships, and lower stress.

Who wouldn’t want a better job fit, more income, a greater sense of accomplishment, more quality working relationships and all with less stress?

Use this link to schedule a strategy call with me so I can get you started on the road to Clarity and Discovery.

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Career Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

 

 

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Direction Is More Important Than Speed...Something To Ponder

Direction is More Important Than Speed

Here’s a thought for highly Strategic people to ponder. After assessing my coaching clients, I have discovered that many of my clients have Strategic™ in their Top 5 or Top 10 potential strengths.

I say potential strengths because possessing the Strategic™ trait does not mean that you’ve polished and matured your Strategic™ into a well-oiled machine. That’s what the process of coaching is all about.

I guide my clients to discover how they are uniquely gifted. How a person is uniquely gifted determined how they can produce the best version of themselves. Once my clients discover exactly and precisely what makes them tick, we move on to developing strengths. 

Strengths start out as traits before intentional development, maturing, and polishing occur. Once a trait becomes a strength, there is nothing that can hold a polished strength back from creating excellence.

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The Value of Connecting at an Emotional Level

Business Men Shaking Hands

Transformational Personal Breakthrough

When through emotional intelligence coaching, a brilliant technologist experiences this kind of transformational personal breakthrough, his career is on the verge of escalating to the next level.

Connecting with people on an emotional level is significantly more effective and more positive than my formerly, pure left-brain approach, of proving my point with charts, graphs, and data.
— C Suite Executive

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What You Should Do When You’re Interviewing For The Wrong Job

Confident Business Woman

 

7 Total Interviews

The company just called Sue back for her 7th interview.  Yes, you read that correctly.  Seven total interviews. Nobody at the company is qualified to understand Sue’s uniqueness. She’s now being asked to take on an individual contributor job.

She’s a deeply skilled, talented, polished and bright candidate. It’s as if the hiring manager is doing everything possible to tactically fill his round hole with a square peg and Sue is the current candidate on the stage.

Who Is Sue?

First, she’s Strategic®.  She has an ability to not only see the big picture but she also has the giftedness to know how to move from point A to point B with great precision. Sue doesn’t need to be in a position that pushes her down in the weeds. She needs to be in a position where she can guide others through the big picture.

She possesses a strength called Individualization®. She’s gifted with an ability to understand the uniqueness of each person she encounters.  She instinctively knows how different people can work together to produce the best possible output. She is gifted to manage people.

Sue is an Arranger®.  Arrangers are gifted to arrange people in the most optimized manner in order to get things done. Combined with her Strategic abilities, Sue has her eye on the entire plan and she instinctively knows how to put the right people in front of the right tasks to maximize their productivity.

Throw in Sue’s Achiever® and she’s virtually guaranteed to guide teams to results. She is built to take people and project results to the finish line.

Placing Sue in a down in the weeds, in an individual contributor role, where she has no ability to guide other people to produce results is a recipe for total frustration, lack of engagement, and guaranteed turnover on Sue’s part. 

Self-Awareness Is Powerful

Sue knows that she needs to be hired into a role where she gets to leverage her people skills, her organizational skills, and her executing skills in a highly strategic role.  

When Sue takes on a role like this, she’ll likely deliver the best productivity of her entire career and she’ll fall in love with the work she’s doing. She’ll be engaged, empowered, and her results will be powerful!

She picked up her heightened and accurate Self-Awareness through Strengths Coaching with Jeff Snyder.

What Should Sue Do In This Case?

Turn around and run!

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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Encouragement: Something A Person Can Never Receive Too Much Of

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ENCOURAGEMENT

I try very hard to load my Monday morning schedule with calls that will get my week started off with a bang!  This past Monday was no exception.  Yes, this is a testimonial from one of my coaching clients but in reverse, what my coaching client delivered to me was encouragement on a silver platter. 

When was the last time you passed on encouragement to someone else on a silver platter?  Do you have any idea how much your actions or words of encouragement might mean to someone else? 

Just spent my first hour on the phone with Jeff Snyder Coaching - motivational, inspirational, eye opening, validating, humbling, and completely NOT what I was anticipating for a first call!  It was SO MUCH more!  I came away with insights and pragmatic, practical, tools I can put into action in my work/relationships starting as early as today! 

IF you are willing to go there, Jeff will provide you with the “code” and he’ll help you crack open the door to possibilities and the journey that lies ahead of you.  BUT, ultimately, it’s up to you, to take that first step and then follow through with a commitment to taking action on the insights, resources, materials, and strategy that Jeff will place at your fingertips.

Jeff, Thanks for the investments you are making in people lives.

PS: If like me, you’re 50 plus with some insights on life, Jeff’s coaching will give you a whole new edge on leading the upcoming generation. We can all learn a thing or two.
— Mark Scoular, Executive Director

This testimonial came to me by way of me digging as deep as I possibly could to deliver value to this coaching client. This is the same value I strive to deliver to each and every one of my coaching clients.

I can’t wait to tackle next Monday’s loaded schedule!

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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Courageous Leadership...is it in You?

Courageous Leadership

 

Dictionary.com defines Courage like this: the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc., without fear; bravery.

Many authors have suggested that leadership requires courage.  The Clifton StrengthsFinder™ specifically isolates and measures a person’s courage in a trait called Self-Assurance®.

The Clifton StrengthsFinder™ defines Self-Assurance® like this: People exceptionally talented in the Self-Assurance® theme feel confident in their ability to manage their own lives. They possess an inner compass that gives them confidence that their decisions are right.

More than 16.7 million people globally have now taken a Clifton StrengthsFinder™ assessment. When 15,000,000 had taken a Clifton StrengthsFinder™, I crunched some interesting numbers.

Out of 34 traits, Self-Assurance® comes in at number 33 in terms of how often it shows up in a person’s Top 5 traits or themes.  Out of 15,001,435 StrengthsFinder™ assessments, Self-Assurance came up 710,060 times in assessment taker’s Top 5 Traits.  This number equates to .047% of the time.

When I dug further, I found that for men, Self-Assurance® came up .061% of the time in their Top 5 themes. For women, Self-Assurance came up .025% of the time in their Top 5 themes.

Self-Assurance®, as measured by the Clifton StrengthsFinder, ™ is a powerful influencing theme.  What this means is that people who have this trait and people to turn this trait into a strength are specially equipped with a talent that fits well in leadership roles.

If you lead or you want to lead, find out where the Self-Assurance® falls among your 34 traits on the Clifton StrengthsFinder™.

Don’t stop once you find out. The power behind the Clifton StrengthsFinder™ occurs when a person:

  • learns their potential strengths
  • when they take ownership over their potential strengths
  • when they turn their traits into strengths and
  • when they properly aim their strengths towards work or activities where they can produce the best version of themselves

This is what an experienced Strengths Coach can do when you engage with them in their Strengths Coaching methodology.

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

  

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One “C” Suite Leader’s Personal Benefits from Developing Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence Improvement

Emotional Intelligence

The term “emotional intelligence” was coined and formally defined by John (Jack) Mayer of the University of New Hampshire and Peter Salovey of Yale University in 1990.

Jack Mayer and Peter Salovey define Emotional Intelligence as “the ability to perceive emotions, to access and generate emotions so as to assist thought, to understand emotions and emotional meanings, and to reflectively regulate emotions in ways that promote emotional and intellectual growth.”

Research has shown that there is no difference between emotional intelligence in men and women. Women do however frequently score higher in some emotional intelligence skills than most men.

Men are more likely to dismiss the value of emotional intelligence than women.

A “C” suite coaching client of mine who has been working with me as his coach for several years now, shared these ideas with me yesterday.

Benefits of Emotional Intelligence

  • “I’ve become much more efficient in my relationships.”
  • “I now pick up on other people’s behaviors that I didn’t notice before because I was too busy focusing on myself.”
  • “When you understand emotional intelligence, you learn to break through other people’s acts.  It’s as if you learn how to decode other’s sincerity or lack thereof.”
  • “Knowing my emotional intelligence has caused me to make a lot of behavioral adjustments that I could have never made before when I was unaware of how I was coming across to others.”
  • “Developing EQ has pushed me to learn how to leverage my gift as a Strategic leader and I no longer feel the need to convince others that I know everything. I stick to the strategy and delegate the details to people on my team who are more capable of carrying out detailed assignments.”
  • “My recent presentation to the Audit Committee was a 10 on a scale of 10.  My presentation to the Board of Directors was a 9.5 on a scale of 10. These ratings came to me from my boss.”

This was one of my most favorite conversations of all time. To have worked with someone for several years to improve behavior, the most difficult task on the planet, and to learn about these kinds of results was priceless.  Then the feedback got even better from my perspective.

What you’ve exposed me to today has touched me at the core of my being. You are amazingly talented at coaching.
— "C" Suite Executive

While these are not the only benefits to be gained by understanding one’s emotional intelligence, these are benefits that came to my client’s mind in one conversation.

This “C” suite executive’s life has changed because of the work we’ve done together to improve his emotional intelligence. No, I’m not guessing at this. I’ve been told on many occasions by this same client that the work we’ve done together has impacted him professionally as well as at home with his wife and his son.

It’s never too late to learn the current state of your own emotional intelligence. It's also not too late to learn how to improve your emotional intelligence.  The benefits of doing so are virtually endless. The sooner you get started the more time there is to create lasting impact.

Jeff Snyder is a Certified Emotional Intelligence Coaching delivering his Emotional Intelligence Coaching services through Jeff Snyder Coaching.

 

 

 

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How to Turn Your Weaknesses into Strengths…That’s Not Right

Strengths Coaching

This video title just landed in my Inbox. It didn’t sit well with me.

I coach Strengths every day. My clients are passionate people who are already good at what they do. Often, the people I work with don’t like comfort zones. By learning their Strengths, they learn how to step outside their comfort zone to stretch and to grow.

My clients come to me because they want to fine-tune what they do to produce a great performance. They’re interested in being maximized and they can’t wait to learn more about themselves.

STRENGTHS COACHING

In the realm of Strengths Coaching, we start off with an assessment that has been taken over 16,000,000 times around the world to identify a person’s unique traits.  We all possess the 34 traits that are identified through this assessment. What makes each us 100% unique is the order in which our traits line up.

The order in which one’s traits line up determines how they have potential to deliver a great performance. Everybody can deliver a great performance of some kind.

Everyone has hidden talents and abilities that, once discovered, can be turned into superpowers.  Jeff is uniquely talented at identifying a person’s greatest abilities, then maximizing those abilities to produce true strengths.
— Chief Information Security Officer

STRENGTHS MATURITY

The traits that show up near the top of one’s assessment report are the traits that can be turned into Strengths. Decades of research shows that when people are given the opportunity to do what they have potential to be great at, the impact on the individual, team, or organization can be powerful.

Some of the benefits include Personal Clarity, Self-Confidence, Direction, Effectiveness, Efficiency, Engagement with one’s work, Stronger Relationships and more.

DON’T FOCUS ON WEAKNESSES

The idea here is to identify one’s natural talents. From there, we can work to mature a person’s top talents into full-blown Strengths. Strengths have no cap on them in terms of just how great they can become.

I don’t ignore weaknesses. In fact, I help my clients to identify their weaknesses. Then, I help my clients to build a strategy around their Weaknesses so their weaknesses don’t derail the pursuit of maximizing their Strengths.

There is no value whatsoever to be gained in trying to turn a weakness into a Strength.  There is tremendous value in maximizing one’s Strengths.

When you’re ready to find Clarity around what your natural Strengths are, call me.

Stand out from the crowd and get the job!  Jeff will teach you how to discover your greatest strengths, and then market yourself to your next employer. 
— Chief Information Security Officer

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

 

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How to Master an Interview

Mastering an Interview

Interviewing is an art versus a science. There are no tricks. There are no gimmicks. 

Mastering an interviewing comes down to pure communication. You have control over some of this communication but you’ll never have control over all the communication that occurs in an interview.

While you can prepare for an interviewer’s questions, you’ll never know exactly what will be asked of you in an interview. 

What you have 100% control over is what you choose to say during your interview.

  • You have control over how you choose to articulate your past stories of accomplishment, contribution and value delivered to previous employers.
  • You have complete control over knowing how to articulate what it is that you bring to the table in terms of skills.  Focus on skills that matter most to your interviewing audience.
  • You have control over how you talk about past successes and past failures. You should use both successes and failures as opportunities for learning and growing. How you express what you’ve learned and how you’ve grown makes all the difference in an interview.
  • You have control over the questions you ask in an interview. Ask questions about the company. Ask questions about the job itself. Ask the hiring manager to articulate his / her management style. Research shows that people leave bad manager relationships far more often than they leave because of larger company issues.
  • Those who strategically take interviewing to the next level invest in learning their unique personal strengths. They know how to articulate what they have potential to be great at and they know how to articulate what they should say “NO” to based on how they are wired.

Those who approach interviews with extreme Clarity, Confidence and Direction are the ones who get offers for the best jobs.

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

 

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TOP 10 Business Skills for 2020

Business Professionals
 CREDIT: Future of Jobs Report, World Economic Forum

CREDIT: Future of Jobs Report, World Economic Forum

Top 10 skills required in 2020 according to the World Economic Forum report

All of the top 2020 skills listed above can be measured with the combination of the Clifton StrengthsFinder and the EQi-2.0 Emotional Quotient Inventory.

Your Unique Strengths

In the hands of an experienced Strengths Coach, the results of the Clifton StrengthsFinder™ can be interpreted to show a coaching client exactly and precisely how they are internally wired.  The 34 traits represented in the Clifton StrengthsFinder™ are broken down into Strategic Thinking Traits, Influencing Traits, Relationship Building Traits and Executing Traits. How a person's traits uniquely line up determine whether they'd be a better Engineer or a better Engineering Manager, a better Accountant or a better Chief Financial Officer and so on.

Notice in the chart above for example that People Management, Coordinating with Others (Collaboration) and Emotional Intelligence are all people-oriented topics.  People skills or Soft skills are, have been and will continue to be highly valuable skills moving into the future.

Emotional Intelligence

The EQi-2.0 Emotional Quotient® Inventory is an assessment used to measure a person's Emotional Intelligence.  This assessment can only be purchased and interpreted by someone who has invested in training and certification through the assessment's owner.

Through this assessment, a Certified Emotional Intelligence Coach can show their client where their Emotional Intelligence stands relative to other people who do similar work. The good news is that the 15 different emotional intelligence skills measured by the EQi-2.0® can be improved upon when working with an experienced coach.

The business wants, needs and expects job candidates who have a blend of Strategic Thinking skills and Emotional Intelligence skills to name just a few.  It takes time to fine-tune and polish the traits found in the Clifton StrengthsFinder™ into Strengths.  It also takes time to fine-tune and polish the skills found in the EQi-2.0 assessment.  

Those who invest themselves to learn about their natural Strengths and those who invest in themselves to improve their current level of Emotional Intelligence are the individuals who will earn the best jobs of the future.

Jeff Snyder Coaching

 

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Hey Technology Professional…They Didn’t Teach You This in Engineering School

Psychological research suggests that a person’s IQ (Cognitive Intelligence) is worth +-10% of career success. The same psychological research also suggest that EI / EQ (Emotional Intelligence or Emotional Quotient) could be worth +-60% of career success.

If you want to progress in any career, what initially gets you going and what gets you to a certain level of success is frequently going to be a different skill set than the skill set you need to continue progressing.

What is the skill set required to progress in any career?

Here are some specific examples. This is what the business is currently asking for from the Director to the “C” Suite in technology job descriptions. Every trait or skill mentioned below that can be measured can be improved upon if a person is naturally gifted with a specific trait.

For some skills or traits, you either have them or you don't. We're all wired differently and we all have potential to deliver a great performance. It's simply a matter of figuring out how a person is uniquely wired and then aligning them with the right work to maximize their performance.

Notice that most of the traits or skills mentioned below are people skills or soft skills.

  • Leadership Presence (can be developed)
  • Leadership that is both Visionary and Strategic (can be measured)
  • Leadership that inspires people (influencing skills can be measured)
  • Thought Leadership (can be measured)
  • Deep Problem Solving Skills (can be measured)
  • Complex Analysis Skills (can be measured)
  • Excellent Verbal Communication Skills (can be learned)
  • Excellent Written Communication Skills (can be learned)
  • Excellent Collaboration and Partnering Skills
  • Superior Presentation Delivery Skills
  • Integrator of People, Process and Technology
  • Change Management Skills
  • Consensus Building Skills
  • Budgeting Skills
  • Business Analysis Skills
  • Contract Negotiation Skills
  • Vendor Management Skills
  • There's more...this list just gets the discussion started!

It is a person’s cognitive skills that gets them into an engineering degree program. It is their cognitive skills that gets their technology career started. Cognitive skills are the skills the brain uses to think, read, learn, remember, reason, calculate and pay attention.

What you see in the list of employer requirements above require some cognitive skills. Most of what is required to move beyond leaning almost purely on cognitive skills are emotional intelligence skills, soft skills or people skills. 

These are the skills that when developed, enable us to lead, influence, persuade, mentor, manage, collaborate, build partnerships, negotiate contracts, manage vendor relationships and more.  Additionally, beyond what a person learns in engineering school, the further up the ladder one wishes to climb, roles require much more emphasis on business skills than on technical skills.

What if you don’t want to be a manager, director or “C” suite technology leader? 

At the Analyst, Engineer or Architect levels, development of the soft skills mentioned above will provide exponential return on investment to your career. Not everybody is built to lead, guide, mentor and grow other people and you shouldn't feel as if you have to move in a managerial direction in order to progress in your own career development.

In addition to people skills, there are also business skills mentioned above. Business skills in this case include the ability to read and interpret financial statements. The ability to present one’s case for technology in terms that a business audience can clearly understand without having to bring in an interpreter. The ability to speak to a CEO, COO, CFO, etc. in their language rather than your technology focused language.

When you invest in yourself to master skills that go above and beyond your IQ or cognitive skills alone, your career progression will go places.

Jeff Snyder Coaching

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"As You May Have Noticed, I am a Director of Information Security"

Great Resume Writers

“To be frank, I was really looking for someone just to write my resume. I was not looking for guidance. As you may have noticed, I am Director of Information Security and have very little time to devote to resume writing.”

This message came to me a while back.  When I read it, I cringed.  Why did I cringe? 

Because the best resume writer on the planet who might have come up with the best resume examples and the best resume templates can't write a resume for someone else without first having proper information.

The only person who has walked in your shoes is you. You are the only person who can properly talk about your accomplishments, contributions and the value you've created for businesses you've worked for in the past. If you’re not willing to put information on the table for a talented resume writer to help you, the resume writer can’t help you.

It’s great that this person is a Director of Information Security but that doesn’t matter at all in the context of getting a great resume written.  When a person needs help with anything in life, it is wise to show humility by stepping aside in order to let the expert they’re reaching out to step in and stand by their side.

I call this “getting out of your own way”.  There are times in life when the greatest gains will be achieved when we’re able to get out of our own way in order to let someone help us in areas where we’re not the expert.

Before you even consider engaging a resume writing service, you need to be willing to participate in the resume writing process. 

 

Jeff Snyder’s, Jeff Snyder Coaching Blog, 719.686.8810

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