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Category: Opinions

Banking on Leadership

I’m pretty proud of the fact that I spent a good majority of my formative career years in the banking industry. Fortunately, I had some great leaders to guide me through the sometimes treacherous political waters of “big bank” hierarchies. Over the years, I worked in Marketing and Business Development, headed up Sales and Service Quality initiatives for banks, managed at one time 71 branches of a regional bank in the Western US, and led a product innovation team for a national supplier to the financial services industry. Banking is in my blood, and I have to admit, I get a little excited every time Refinery gets a chance to work with a financial institution, whether it’s a large multi-national bank or a purpose-driven regional credit union.

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Food and Leadership P1

“Like food, leadership can be comforting, delightful, surprising, revolting. Like food, it is fuel, glue, and emblem of a community — be it a family, a nation, or a corporation. It energizes, brings us together, and represents us. Like food, leadership has a timeless essence, comes in countless forms, and fulfils basic needs.”-- Gianpiero Petriglieri, HBR, June 3, 2010

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Executive Burnout Part 1: The Truck That Finally Hit Me

I was on a call with my coach, talking about what I was going to commit to doing better or different for the next few months in my leadership. I found myself giving rote, dispassionate responses, and finally admitted that I was just exhausted. About everything.

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The Year of Not Quite Living: Part Three: Fumbling Toward the Light

I was not even at the half-way point of one of the worst years of my life. Already, I had lost my job, had to move my family back to Colorado, attempt, then fail, then attempt again to find a job, get pregnant, then lose the pregnancy, try to maintain a state of normalcy for my kids, and work through a consulting gig that was putting food on our table. I was ready for that year to end. Every day was an immense struggle for me to get up, try to be a mom to my babies, a supportive wife to my husband, and a capable consultant to a client that had high expectations for me to transform their service quality levels. I was still bitter— actually, downright angry—about being fired from my executive position 6 months earlier. I still had so many unanswered questions. I was doing amazing work, or so I was told. I was getting along with everyone on the executive team, or so I thought. My team of regional managers and 71 branch managers loved working with me, or so they told me. What did I do wrong? What was wrong with me?

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How connected are you really?

What does being connected mean to you?

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The Year of Not Quite Living—Part Two: One Step Up, Three Stumbles Down

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What leadership looks like in times of turmoil

In the wake of the tragedy that took place on March 15th in Christchurch New Zealand, I shared something powerful and hopeful with my LinkedIn community: the above picture of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, accompanied by a comment on her display of empathy and inspiring leadership.

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Can we create work environments that are truly inclusive?

My last blog post was labelled, “How being pregnant has made me a better leader”, and the response I got to it was quite incredible. I was humbled and awed at the stories that people shared with me about their own experience. I also got the proverbial, “just wait”.

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The Year of Not Quite Living—Part One: Falling into the Pit

“Today is my one-year anniversary with Central Bank*. But, rather than getting an annual review, I got fired. Well, asked to resign, actually.

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Feedback and Meaningful Conversations Are Everything During the Talent Process

If your organization is embarking on a talent management initiative of any size or scope with an objective of ensuring a robust pipeline of high potential leaders, one of the most critical questions to ask is: Are we an organization which understands how to…

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