Nan S. Russell
Author & Speaker

All posts in July, 2014

MB900422613[1]Maybe you received an email seeking applicants as paid mystery shoppers in your area, or offering cash in exchange for filling out online surveys. Or you heard theaters used subliminal advertising to increase sales of popcorn and soft drinks. Maybe it was the “send old shoes, get a new one free” Nike promotion that caught your attention, or the discovery that you can cure disease by drinking four glasses of water every morning.

The fact that these are all false didn’t stop thousands of people from forwarding them, repeating them, or believing them. Two of these even made it into the top 25 “hottest urban legends” on snopes.com. Likewise, the fact that office grapevines are filled with false information, speculation, innuendo, and gossip doesn’t stop people from using rumor to fuel distrust, reinforce silo building, or enhance “us” versus “them” thinking.

This workplace ladder fuel can devastate motivation and destroy (continue reading →)

Winning at Working 

goat3I live near Glacier National Park in Montana, and last weekend when I was there with my husband, I was fortunate to see a range of wildlife including bear, moose, mountain goats, big horned sheep, and marmots, plus amazing wildflowers. That day without wireless or cell service offered a quiet and reflective pause to the busyness that surrounds most of us, most of the time.

So, in the interest of offering a little of that calming feeling to you, I put together three helpful workplace articles for those who lead, from hundreds that crossed my desk the past few weeks, along with my latest psychologytoday.com article, in the hopes that you might find a less, not more, approach helpful in your very busy day:

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Things You May Have Missed 

MB900386089[1]“Really?!” Those near me in the grocery aisle could hardly miss the irritation in my voice. All Iwanted on that Saturday of errands, on my last stop of the day, was to get in and out quickly so I could go home and get things ready for a family movie night.

Instead, the snack aisle where I typically buy a favorite 100% whole wheat cracker had morphed into an unknown entity. It wasn’t just that they had moved the popcorn, nuts, crackers, and cookies around that slowed me down, it was that my snack wasn’t there.

My eyes scanned the added shelves filled with new versions of “my cracker,” created by the same manufacturer with flavors such as: Parmesan Garlic, Tomato and Sweet Basil, Brown Rice with Sea Salt and Pepper, Roasted Garlic, Cracked Pepper. Beyond being annoyed that (continue reading →)

In the Scheme of Things 

As a colleague of Nan’s, I often post here when things grab my attention about today’s workplace and sometimes, life. I haven’t posted in several weeks. My non-work life has been filling my days with doctors appointments, surgery and follow-ups. All is good!

Column8-girl on bike

We are almost mid-year and one of my goals is to become a frequent bike rider. Now, many of you are probably thinking what’s the big deal? The big deal is, I don’t know how, didn’t learn as a kid and have tried a couple times in my adult life (56 now) with no success. I’ve been seriously talking about it for two years! And, finally decided it was time to “just do it”, as the Nike slogan says. So, after buying a used bike and questioning seasoned riders I’ve started my version of riding, in beach alleys and during off-peak hours. I have had some pretty nasty falls and have the scrapes and the bruises to prove it. But, I am determined to ride a bike. Not just once in awhile but often. I get on that bike when I am not in the mood, not motivated, dejected and bruised. I will do this. I will succeed. These words have become my mantra.

Maybe this sounds familiar, are there things at work and non-work you’ve been talking about for awhile and you want to start doing them? It will take a good dose of determination to succeed. And, in my experience a little inspiration helps too.

Here are two of my current favorites:

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Leadership