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Laurie Maddalena

My Confession…

I have a confession to make: I struggle with delegation. My mind is often in overdrive, and stopping to ask for help is not one of my strong points. A couple of months ago, I came to a breaking point. I was printing out materials for a leadership program, and the ink in my printer ran out. I didn’t have another cartridge, and I had to run to Staples in the middle of the day…

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Where You Should Spend 80% of Your Time

Have you ever left the office at the end of the day, knowing you worked really hard, but unable to pinpoint what you really accomplished? I used to have many days like this; days where I was really busy, but I wasn’t able to find the time to work on the most important areas that would make the biggest impact in my role as a human resources executive. There is one exercise you can do…

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Are You This Type of Leader?

Forty years ago, there was little talk in business about engaging employees, coaching and developing direct reports, or cultivating the company culture.  Many people stayed at the same organization for most of their career. Traditional managers, who were task-oriented and provided a lot of direction but very little inspiration, were tolerated. The command and control style of leadership prevailed. The landscape of the work environment has changed. Employees have more choices, and will leave an…

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Combating Negativity and Gossip

In one of my recent leadership programs, an executive expressed her frustration about organizational gossip and negativity. Her company was going through some changes, and the leadership team was frustrated with the rumor mill. Through the discussion, she came to the realization that the leadership team had not done a good job of communicating the changes and managing the impact. In the absence of information, people make things up. If there is a lack of…

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Habits of the “Super Achiever”

One of my personal goals each year is to improve my habits over the previous year. Whether it’s being more productive, spending more time planning and prioritizing, exercising more, or focusing on cultivating personal relationships, keeping my focus on getting better and better helps me to get greater results over time. Small incremental improvements yield better results than a list of lofty resolutions or goals.   This year, one of my small improvements is implementing…

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Employee Satisfaction vs. Engagement

This year got off to a great start for me. Our family welcomed our second child, Luca, on January 18th.  We are very excited to have him join our family, and big sister Olivia is enjoying him! Here is a picture of baby Luca. I was also honored to be interviewed for the article, “Coaching Outside the C-Suite” in the January edition of Credit Union Management magazine. Since I am taking a few weeks off,…

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The Power of Today

Happy New Year! Did you know that most leaders are only 30%-40% productive each day? Most people spend their days reacting to issues that come up and focus very little on the important key result areas. One of my professional goals last year was to work at 95% productivity every day. I didn’t succeed every day, but having that goal made me focus intensely on increasing my efficiency by blocking out time, planning, focusing on…

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The Myth of Multi-Tasking

Last week I almost burnt my kitchen down. In my quest to get all the important things done on my list, I decided to multi-task. I put my lunch on the stove, and then went into my office to answer a couple e-mails while simultaneously making an important phone call. I was so engrossed (and overloaded), that I completely forgot about my lunch. I totally charred the pan, and black smoke filled the house. It was…

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Where Many Executives Fail

I once worked for a leader who was very introverted and stoic, and often had trouble connecting with his employees. Morale was low in the office, and the executive had a hard time understanding why his staff didn’t enjoy their work environment. He viewed his role as setting the direction of the organization and delivering results. It didn’t cross his mind that the people side of business was the most important. It is not uncommon…

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How Mindset Affects Your Leadership

Have you ever come across a manager who didn’t feel he or she needed improvement? Psychologist Carol Dweck of Stanford University has done research on mindset and how the mindset you choose significantly affects how you lead your life. Dweck’s extensive research has shown that a manager’s mindset can have a significant impact on your business as well. Dweck indentifies two mindsets:  Fixed mindset: intelligence is a fixed trait Growth mindset: intelligence is a flexible…

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