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8 simple steps to enhance your LinkedIn profile


If you’re reading this blog, then chances are you’re the type of person who already knows at least a little bit about LinkedIn.

However, our experience consulting with other businesses has taught us that many of a company’s employees don’t fully grasp the power of LinkedIn as a business development tool.Improve your LinkedIn

So why use it? LinkedIn is the No. 1 B2B social networking site in the world with 313 million members. But more impressive in terms of measuring ROI for your business, 77 percent of B2B companies have acquired a customer through LinkedIn

Those types of statistics convinced us that offering LinkedIn training for clients and their staff members might be a valuable exercise. As we’ve gone through the process of training companies both small and large, we’ve learned that sticking to the training script in the allotted time period isn’t always feasible, particularly because the knowledge gap between employees in terms of understanding the tool is so vast. Some want to go right into the Advanced Search tool for instance, while others are asking how you can connect with someone or upload their photo.

Therefore, it’s nearly impossible to cover the full spectrum of what you can do on LinkedIn in a single blog. You could write dozens of posts about the intricacies of the tool. But when it comes to covering the basics, we thought highlighting some best practices when it comes to enhancing your LinkedIn profile and building connections would provide a solid foundation for anyone who hasn’t dedicated enough time to maximizing his or her presence on LinkedIn.


Enhancing your LinkedIn profile

1. First, identify a list of keywords prospects would search for when looking for the services you offer (e.g. human resources, strategy, consultant, compensation, insurance, manufacturing, technology, financial advising, health care, retirement, defined benefit, etc.). Then, include those keywords throughout your entire profile.

2. Write an effective headline. For search engine optimization (SEO) purposes, this is where to describe exactly what you do and include additional relevant keywords. Don’t just restate your job title. For example, instead of “senior manager at XYZ solutions,” try something like “health care consultant,” “strategic communications and marketing planner,” “government relations and policy advisor.”

3. Include a professional photo to let people know you take LinkedIn seriously and are active on the network. This is a big one and easy to do. Many people won’t bother to connect with you if you don’t have a photo, because they assume you never use LinkedIn.

4. Write a detailed summary of who you are. Reiterate what you do, why a client should work with you and clearly differentiate yourself. Again, include keywords throughout.

5. Fill in your job responsibilities at each position you have listed.  Yes, this can be time consuming, but most info can be pulled from your resume or CV.

6. Connect, connect, connect. Make it a habit to connect with people who you really know or have actually met by using the search tool or “people you know” area on the right side of the tool. The more connections you have, the easier it will be for you to direct message others and reach out for referrals to business prospects. Remember, connections should represent your “real-world” contacts. When asking to connect to someone you don’t know, be sure to include a note in your request that explains why you’d like to connect with that person. Refrain from using LinkedIn’s generic invite text.

7. Add skills you have in the “skills” section so your connections can go to your profile and endorse you. Endorsements are less time consuming to give and receive than “recommendations” and are a great way to add keywords. Important note: Make sure you give and receive endorsements for skills you and your connections really have.

8. Finally, don’t skip the more time consuming process of getting “recommendations” that help build your reputation. You’ve included great content describing yourself. Recommendations allow a third-party to validate what you’ve said. Look at your connections and determine who would be willing to give you a recommendation. Then ask for one. Give recommendations to get them back. Connections will often reciprocate the favor.

Bottom line: These are some easy first steps to help you get found on search engines and enhance the SEO of your LinkedIn profile.  To keep these tips handy, click below to download “8 Steps to Enhance Your LinkedIn Profile.” 


Click to Download 8 Steps to Enhance Your LinkedIn Profile



Jeremy Church is vice president of media and content strategies for WordWrite Communications. He can be reached at and on Twitter @churchjeremy.Jeremy Church

Weekly Wrap: Leadership Edition


Leaders are a reflection of both the companies for which they work and the businesses with which they collaborate. They represent the ideals, work ethic and authenticity consistent with the organization’s mission. Therefore, it is vitally important for leaders to share their passion with colleagues and employees. Passion is infectious. When leaders talk about their motivations and inspirations, it fosters a spirit of goal-oriented actions from other employees and business partners. 

“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.”

John Maxwell

This week’s Wrap centers on how leaders are chosen and the mindset they must maintain, as well as the fundamental principles that ensure their success.

Huffington Post

17 Things Every Successful Leader Says Every Day 

Leaders embrace collaboration and team achievement. They do not become adversaries or 
overpower their team with negative emotions. Successful leaders get that way because
they have a positive attitude that they use to build strong and enduring relationships. In order
to go from good to great, there are a multitude of sayings that successful leaders say every day. Some of my favorites from the list include: “Thank you,” “I’m proud of you” and “What can I do to help?” Essentially, a leader is the rock and the foundation of the organization. They bring unity to the team and foster collaboration and empowerment.


How Leaders Pick Leaders: 3 Executives Reveal How Promotions are Decided

Have you ever asked yourself, “Why was so-and-so promoted over me?” It can be frustrating. While you may be working relentlessly long hours, building a tremendous portfolio and answering all of your company’s demands, sometimes the result is not as expected. You don’t get that pay raise with the senior title or you aren’t asked to lead the new client project. Have no fear; take what you have learned and follow the suggestions gained from the 6th Annual Asian MBA Leadership conference. The point remains firm: the ones who successfully ascend into leadership all possess strong relationships, recognition and an edge.

PR Week

The Way PR Engages has Changed and Trust is Key           

Times have changed in the 21st century. As PR Week notes, “This world demands trust above all and, alongside that, the right people in positions of power who understand the pressures.” Younger generations can no longer be intimidated or forced to respond to the same demands as before. In the current market, individual relationships count. Behavior is on public display, so customer interaction is imperative. Read more to see why it is time to develop a new style of corporate leader and build something more resilient.MBA Leadership resized 600

A remarkable amount of effort, time and money has been devoted to the study of leadership. Despite all of the research, opinions will always vary in regards to what leadership is and what traits prompt the most success. While there is an array of perspectives, the best leaders are optimistic, hold high levels of integrity, communicate openly and inspire action. They hold a passion that is magnetic and draws people in.

We would love to hear your thoughts. How has a leader in your life impacted your performance within the workplace?

Share with us in the comments below!


Julia Pizzutti is an intern for WordWrite Communications. You can find her on Twitter @julzutti93

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How to figure out what to do with your life:


I cannot believe the time has come. I am a senior in college! Graduation is quickly approaching and in a short seven months my academic career will be behind me. With my diploma in hand, I will be eager to begin a new chapter in my life.

Clearly, it is time to face reality. Along with millions of other millenials, I am in the beginning stages of figuring out what to do with the rest of my life. Here is what I have learned up to this point, thanks to some helpful advice and experience:

Life is a process of elimination

Do I know what I want to do when I graduate yet? Honestly, no. I don’t know where I want to live, what type of company I want to work for or what position would be best suited for my personality and talents. And that answer terrifies me.

But I can say with full confidence that life is a process of elimination. Think back to the time when you were in the first grade. What did you want to be? A fireman, a scientist or maybe even a superhero? For me, I wanted to be a teacher. I loved math and enjoyed telling other
people what to do. Now fast-forward a few years to high school. What did you want to be? YourCareerPathAhead
answer probably changed. Perhaps you wanted to become a doctor, musician or a professional athlete. Personally, I wanted to be a vet. I loved animals and could spot a purebred from a mile away. And now fast forward to your first year of college. At this point, were you finally confident in what you wanted to be in life? Again, probably not! My major and career goals have changed quite a few times and I am sure you share a similar story.

The point is, as you go throughout life, you gain experiences. And with experience comes preferences. You slowly learn that you have a great memory, fantastic people skills or maybe even an artistic flair. You also learn what you don’t like. You don’t like speaking to a large group of people or you get squeamish around blood.

Ultimately, you are able to check things off your list that you are sure you do not want to do. And this is the key. Figuring out what you don’t like is a necessary part of the journey to finding what you do like.

Think it, dream it, be it

Growing up, my family and teachers always told me that I could do anything and be anything that I wanted. I always found this hard to believe, but now as a senior, I have much greater confidence. Uncertainty is apart of life and that is what makes everything so fantastic. Yes, I am terrified that I am a 21-year-old senior in college who does not have my entire future planned out yet. And I am sure I am not alone in the fear or hesitancy. But no matter your unique,
individual life stage, I am sure of one thing. If you combine your passion, dedication and perseverance into one, you will be an unstoppable force.

While it is okay to be unsure of what you would like to do in your career, remember to dream big.  It is all about gaining experiences that will continue to move you forward in your journey
of self-discovery. Do not limit your search! If you want to move to China, apply for that visa. If you want to work at a Big-4, write the strongest essays you can muster and challenge those interviewing skills.

Now is the time in your life where possibilities are limitless.  Do not say no to an opportunity just because it was not what you were envisioning; keep your eyes open.

Go with it. Update that checklist, dream big, trust the process and have fun while you are doing it. We would love to hear your thoughts. Do you have any advice for new graduates or those making a big life change?

Share with us in the comments below!


Julia Pizzutti is an intern for WordWrite Communications. You can find her on Twitter @julzutti93

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Weekly Wrap: Success is Optimal


Success is the name of the game. In today’s evolving, demand driven market, customers are no longer vying for the attention of businesses. It’s the other way around. As a result, in the quest to achieve brand awareness with the ideal customer-base, businesses must go to great lengths to attain a competitive advantage. With this transformation, there are certain measures to be aware of to help your firm survive the impeding economic and social changes.


How to Succeed in Business by Really Trying

According to Milton Friedman’s book, Capitalism and Freedom, the great argument for the
market “is its tolerance of diversity; its ability to utilize a range of special knowledge and capacity.” In the 21st century, there has been a tremendous shift in the power between thedescribe the image buyer and seller. There is a distinct difference; the once former consumer has now become the customer. In prior years, businesses could survive without even trying. Today, the power of choice has enabled customers to exploit, reduce and discriminate against prospective companies. Read what Forbes has to say about how the world has entered the age of customer capitalism.

WordWrite Communications

Read the Audience Wrong and Proceed at Your Own Peril

Food, service and ambiance: welcome to the restaurant industry. The “family-dining” concept has evolved over the past several decades. Once embraced for its long, sit down meals, the food and beverage sector has transitioned into one of speed and convenience. John Durante, WordWrite’s marketing services director, shares his take on why the conventional family dining story is plunging into the darkness.

PR Daily

JetBlue and Comcast Show the Downside of Quashing Customer Complaints

Last week, a JetBlue flight prohibited a passenger from boarding a plane after she tweeted about an incident that occurred between the pilot and other passengers. While the woman claims she was only a bystander, the JetBlue staff remained firm in their refusal to allow her ondescribe the image the flight. In this instance, fighting fire with fire worked against the company. A prime example of a brand vs. customer conundrum, it is important to respond to customer complaints to show you care but be careful in your approach. With customers in control, a company’s reputation is at the hand of its clientele. 

 From the customer-centric approach, the world has become focused on the wants and needs of individuals in the marketplace. It is no longer a matter of what the business wants; it is what the customer wants. The sooner your business recognizes this fact, the quicker it will rise to success. How has this increase in customer buying power impacted your business operations?

Share with us in the comments below!


Julia Pizzutti is an intern for WordWrite Communications. You can find her on Twitter@julzutti93

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Read the Audience Wrong and Proceed at Your Own Peril


WordWrite has opined frequently about the three inviolable rules of great storytelling:  Authenticity, a telling of that story by those fluent with it and a constant (and accurate) reading of the audience. This is a fundamental premise on which most of my WordWrite work is built. It is always in my mental space and directs many of the professional tasks I attend to on a daily basis. It is also a common way that I evaluate macro marketing and business performance when needed to assess a prospect, client or even industry sector.

That’s why this approach has lead me to a point of fascinating awe in observing the absolute headlong cratering of certain sectors in the restaurant industry and the desperate marcom approaches some are pursuing as a way to stop the bleeding. I’ve been paying special attention to the “family-dining” concept. You know that category with all its Red Lobsters, Olive Gardens, Chili’s, Fridays and the like. A staple in drawing restaurant traffic, the family dining concept is essentially the same as it has been for decades. Sit-down, full table service eating at modest prices in spaces that might best be called dining “rooms.” The food is generally passable, the beer is cold, kids color and there are few menu names to create self-conscious speech stumbles.

But the entire concept in all its mediocre food, ambience and vibe demanded something that isfoodie resized 600 and has been fundamentally changing: that people must come sit at a conventional table facing one another, be waited on and, essentially, be forced to talk. As heretical as this might sound family diners are not so much interested in that anymore (especially the under 40 set). The reasons for this shift are abundant and relatively easy to track: a shift in food tastes, traffic still stalled at below pre-recession levels, wage stagnation within the target market segment and perhaps most remarkable of all, the influence of personal communication devices in reshaping our style of social and family interaction—even in restaurants.

But all of these factors have been well-documented. So how it is then this business sector has cratered? Who was asleep at the switch as this was happening? Well in a phrase, the family dining sector has largely violated the third rule of Story—it has not effectively read the audience. So now as “family” diners shift to fresher food, different eating vibes and the clubbier atmosphere of say Chipotle or Panera, conventional competitors are scratching their heads and pursuing advertising approaches that announce, not hide, their desperation. Consider the following:  “All you can eat” appetizers for one price (Fridays); one-time fee passes allowing you to endlessly eat certain menu items for multiple months (Olive Garden); deep fried green beans (Fridays again)! My God will they ever put down the shovel and stop digging the hole?

Meanwhile nary a nod has come from most of these same brands about creating a more informal dining vibe, a change in how patrons encounter and move within the space of units or even how diners are invited to integrate the use of their “devices” into their eating and drinking time.  If the new competitors in the sector knew this was important how did the established players miss it? 

They just broke rule number three—while attending to the endless business pressures of price, cost, value, suppliers, wages and the like—they ignored their lifeblood—their diners and what they were trying to tell them all along. Now there is hell to pay, the conventional family dining story is dormant, the competitive product weak and few innovations have appeared to-date suggesting this plunge can stop.


John Durante is marketing services director for WordWrite Communications.    

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The Importance of Self-Branding in Business: My Take on Cyndee Woolley’s “Brand You” Concept


A great quality of WordWrite Communications as an employer is the agency’s nurturing of professional development for its employees. While it’s not always easy to balance professional development with the turbulence of agency life and client deliverables, I recently was able to squeeze an hour of time out of my day to attend a PRSA webinar that really resonated with me.

Personal BrandingThe webinar, presented by public relations pro and Building Brand [You] author Cyndee Woolley, focused on the matter of self-branding and how to stop selling yourself short in your career. As a young professional, I was attracted to the topic, primarily because I believe not enough of the millennial workforce markets itself for success.  My hope is that summarizing some of my key takeaways from the webinar will spread to other young professionals in the WordWrite network, as well as my own.

Here’s the very first point that hooked me: If you’re spending time complaining about other people’s self-promotion, you’re not spending enough time focusing on your own brand. Speak up if you feel I’m wrong, but this is a commonality that seems to be even more prevalent in females. Becoming flustered and annoyed by someone else’s initiative (as over-extended as it may be) will in no way benefit you. Take that energy and channel it into your own success. What was irksome about this other person’s brand? What did you envy? How can you feel comfortable with self-promotion and make your brand authentic to your own personality?

Woolley uses Lean In’s Ban Bossy campaign as an example here.  Don’t be afraid to establish your brand, show relevancy and close the deal by speaking up. There may be a “bossy” stigma, but we’re working towards fixing that. As Beyoncé puts it in Ban Bossy’s promotional video, “I’m not bossy. I’m the boss.”

Now that you have the right focus, there are some key factors to consider when expressing your brand.

Appearance – We think this is a given. We know how to dress appropriately for our career, but this is about more than fashion. Do you come in to your morning meeting clutching your Starbucks cup for dear life? (Guilty.) Do you come in looking tired, disheveled and burnt out? Reconsider the vibe you’re giving off to your co-workers and the people you interact with on a daily basis.

This idea piggybacks with friendliness and approachability. Some days just aren’t good days, but do you really want to be known as the resident office grump? Furthermore, when going to a networking event, plan to actually interact with other people. Too often, cliques are formed at these events with a few people you know, and whether you realize it or not, you appear to be unapproachable.

Imagine your own vision of your brand. Woolley describes this as your “Youtopia.” Stop chasing other people’s priorities and develop a clear vision of your ideal life. She notes your vision should be both personal AND professional. This is key here, because as much as you may try, you cannot separate your personal and professional life when self-branding. It isn’t authentic if it doesn’t show your true personality. I witness this mistake being made often with young professionals creating two Twitter accounts – one for personal use and one for professional tweeting. By doing this, you’re excluding others from seeing the real you. There’s nothing wrong with incorporating humor into your brand, and this ties back to the approachability factor. (We’re all adults, and there’s nothing wrong with showing you have a life outside of work; just make sure you’re keeping it clean.)

Why is authenticity important? It establishes credibility. As ethical PR professionals, we don’t spin or manipulate a company’s brand to be something it’s not, so you should be following this same standard when it comes to your own brand. Another way to establish professional credibility is to list specific accomplishments on your LinkedIn profile. In person and on social media, show people why they should be supporting you.

ALS AssociationWoolley encapsulates many other ideas, but the last I will leave you with is relevancy. How are you relevant to your industry? Be aware of what’s in it for your client and what’s in it for you. Knowing why your customers value you is vital, and it’s not always about the tangibles. She points to the ALS Association’s Ice Bucket Challenge here. Why was dumping a bucket of ice water on your head relevant to society and the association’s goals? Even if you didn’t have $100 to contribute to the charity, getting the message out on social media still raised awareness about ALS.  Recognizing that abstracts like this are also relevant to your value is something that will create success for your personal brand, your employer and your clients.

Let’s talk more about this; provide your feedback in the comments below!


Rachel Borowski is an account executive for WordWrite Communications. She can be reached at and found on Twitter @RachelBro_ski.Rachel Borowski

Weekly Wrap: Ethics in Business Edition


Imagine this: you are at work and you notice that your fellow coworker has been clocking in an extra half hour every day for months. It honestly doesn’t bother you, because you consider your coworker to be a friend. One day, your boss calls you unexpectedly to his office. He explains that there has been some discrepancy in the finances and questions whether you have any knowledge behind the issue. You sit there, stumped.

This is the type of question nearly every business ethics professor will ask his students on the first day of class.  Think about it. What would you do? For me, I answered, “tell the boss theEthicsScale032610b truth,” although the majority of my class did not share the same mindset. Responses from, “If my boss knew I had known, I’d be fired,” to “It’s my friend; his business, not mine,” to “If it’s a big corporation, they make enough money. No big deal.” Even with the most basic of an example, the moral of the story revolves around the link between honesty and deception. 

Perspectives commonly vary in regards to ethics, but how does this variance impact the business world? 


Avoiding Cross-Examination

Let’s begin with the basics. Sometimes it is easier to tell a fib than it is to tell the truth. When you don’t like what someone is wearing and they ask you your opinion, it is usually okay to smile and nod along. What they don’t know won’t hurt them, right? Wrong. In the business world, deception and conniving plots may get your business from point A to point B, at first. But when you hear the words, “I have to say, I’m very disappointed,” you know the misconception behind your scheme has been revealed. Read this simple life-extracting example of how a young professional made a mistake that taught him a lesson he would never forget.


Business and Society: Defining the ‘Social Licence’

Aside from the basic life lesson, on the global scale, inequality is increasing at a tremendous rate. This is no longer a matter about lying on a time sheet or about the color of dress a friend is wearing. Corporate accountability is increasing in urgency. Abuse is commonplace in companies where labor is outsourced. Hate speech and gender discrimination transpires amongst the workforce on a daily basis. Large oil spills or other human-caused environmental disasters are frowned upon. The question, “Whose fault is it?” is a continuous chain of he-said-she-said blame. With driving awareness, business leaders, politicians and civil society are working towards developing global goals to meet the world’s most pressing development problems. Read more to understand how social licenses remain the core center of this ethical debate.


Business Ethics: 3 Questions Every Business Leader Must Ask

If you recall ‘the most valuable commodity is information’ phrase from the 1987 Gordon Gekko film Wall Street, business professionals soak up data and information. From inventory turns, fixed asset turnover to discounted cash flows, business has become a numbers game. More often than not, the concept of ethics is absent from the minds of money-hungry corporate executives. Therefore, the best way to help oversee the implementation and effectiveness of aCorporate Social Responsibility V2 company’s ethics and compliance program is to find answers to three pivotal questions: What is the strength of our ethical culture? How effective are the systems we are counting on to manage risks? And, what objective metrics do we rely on to monitor our compliance and ethics system performance? Read more to gain insight on seeking answers to these do-good questions.

It is hard; in the business world, there are a million decisions to consider. From making financially incenting choices, to promoting a new product, creating brand awareness and achieving maximum client retention, drawing the fine line between what is right and what is wrong is a challenge. In the day-to-day life of an employee, sometimes fibbing on achievements is the easiest route, but it is definitely not the best. When considered on the global scale, the concept of ethics is surreal. Companies have been allowed to dehumanize and disgrace business practices with little corporate accountability.

At the end of the day, developing an ethics system is even more challenging. Combining all of the necessary components to running a successful business in addition to setting standards that promote ethical operations may seem nearly impossible. But there is a way to bring accountability to your company. Take a step back and reflect on who you are and what you know. How can you help implement and bring awareness to ethical standards within your workplace?

Share with us in the comments below!


Julia Pizzutti is an intern for WordWrite Communications. You can find her on Twitter @julzutti93

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Weekly Wrap: Being Human is Hard Edition


Do you go to work every day with a can-do mentality? Life in the 21st century is difficult. Technology is forcing us to stay plugged in all day, every day. More often than not, the human body is rarely getting the rest it needs. Being pulled in a million directions from family to friends, classes, work, meetings and events is overwhelming. Forget trying to fit in a few minutes of casual relaxation and fun. When it feels like your life is spiraling out of control, your performance at work can suffer greatly. It is a domino effect. When your work performance suffers, your reputation suffers, your salary suffers and your social life seamlessly drains away.

Sometimes combating it feels hopeless, but there are ways to avoid burnout. If you begin to recognize what underlying problems are causing your emotional and physical distress, then youstart taking control 666x500 resized 600 can begin to take the preventative steps necessary to work towards a more productive you.

Harvard Business Review

Just Thinking You Slept Poorly Can Hurt Your Performance

Let’s begin with the topic of sleep. I certainly don’t feel like I get enough sleep, and chances are, you feel the same. Consequently, when human beings do not get the recommended 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night, their reasoning skills are impaired, their reaction time slows and they remember less. But is this matter of “not getting enough shut eye” all in our heads? According to Harvard Business Review, just thinking you slept poorly can hurt your job performance. Case studies from Colorado College show that participants led to believe that they had high-quality sleep significantly outscored control groups and adult norms on verbal fluency tests. Read more to see how the placebo effect worked and how you can convince yourself that you are well-rested.


How to Take Control of Your Reputation at Work

Blame the person who took too long in line to order the cappuccino, blame the person in the car in front of you who didn’t go through the yellow light and blame your coworker for not submitting the proposal on time. When things go wrong, it is usually easier to blame anyone else but yourself. Reflect deeply and turn this mindset around. When in the office you are in control of your own actions and individual ideals. Nothing is anyone else’s “fault.” To help ensure that you are making the most of your day, always go to work prepared, be consistent, keep your promises, buy into yourself and stop complaining. If you follow these helpful suggestions, then you can begin to push past your own mental barriers and take claim of your professional life.

The Simple Dollar 
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Work-Life Balance: 14 Techniques for Improving it

After a long day in the office, it feels amazing to slip on your favorite pair of pajamas, cuddle up on the couch and let the day you just had slip deep into the back of your mind. Sometimes
though, when the stressors of life are at an all-time high, it can become ever-so-challenging to find those few minutes of necessary solitude and social satisfaction. Take a deep breath and relax. Just remember that while work may be your priority, your ultimate priority is you. Yes, you. Take the time you need to plan your day, set goals and establish a routine that promotes self-reflection and relaxation amid the craziness. Here are 14 key techniques for improving your work-life balance. Some favorites include taking breaks, writing a to-do list before you leave, keeping careful documentation of your tasks and having focused sessions at work.

The primary takeaway here is that you are in control of your mindset. Yes, not getting the recommended 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night can inhibit your overall productivity for the day. Sometimes though, the power of perseverance is all you need to overcome those seemingly impossible challenges. And when your reputation at work is suffering, stop blaming those around you. Everything will not always be in your control but you have the say-so over your own words and actions. Keep yourself as the priority and adjust your goals around your professional growth. Take a minute and consider what type of mindset you had when you walked into work this past week and how you left feeling each day. How did your mentality impact your productivity and well being in the office?


Share with us in the comments below!


Julia Pizzutti is an intern for WordWrite Communications. You can find her on Twitter @julzutti93.

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Jill Konrath Shares the “Only Real Competitive Advantage” at #INBOUND14


I’m not sure there are words that can describe how remarkable INBOUND 2014 was last week. I’m going to need at least a month to process all of the information that I learned from the amazing sessions and phenomenal keynotes, not to mention what I learned from the other Inbounders in attendance. Christy Goodman Jill Konrath Paul Furiga

By far, the session I was looking forward to the most was Jill Konrath’s “The Only Real Competitive Advantage” – and boy did she deliver.

I have been following Jill’s sales strategies for a few years now – a particular shout out to her SNAP Selling techniques. Attending her breakout session was a priority for me, but what I never thought would happen was the opportunity to meet Jill at the welcome reception. What a great way to kick off the conference!

In Jill’s session, she shared that the only real competitive differentiator and key to a successful career is agility. Since change is the new constant, how do you become successful in a constantly changing world?

She shared nine ways to master agility in order to gain success:

1. Take the deep dive. Jill suggests making a goal of learning as much as you can in the shortest amount of time possible. Hit the ground running. Be a sponge. Do what you can to take in as much as possible from the get-go.

2. Dump it out. It’s likely you’re going to remember everything you hear so write it down. This frees up the brain to remember other things and helps with the brain’s natural filing system.

3. Chunk it up. Ask yourself is this essential? If so, in what sequence do I want to learn it?

4. Create tools. This includes cheat sheets and check lists that help free up memory space for other information. Jill Konrath INBOUND 2014

5. Rapidly learn new skills. To illustrate this point, Jill put a few members of the audience on stage (including me!) for an exercise to quickly learn a new skill. The skill was to be able cross your hands in front of you, twist them around to touch your nose, then unhook your arms. It was interesting to participate and observe how a somewhat complex skill was processed so easily by a couple of people, yet not able to be mastered by others. For the record, yes, I was able to master the skill after a couple attempts!

6. Practice. This is essential. If we think of our brain like a muscle, then practice makes perfect.

7. Engage in experiments. Test out methods or theories for remembering information and working on an internal filing system.

8. Search for the root cause. Focus on the primary goal or reason to remember a certain piece of information. This will help when you need to associate it with other information in your brain’s filing system.

9. Flexibility and fluidity in your thinking. Since there are more ways to solve problems than one single answer, fluidity is essential in your thought process.

As Jill noted, we're never comfortable anymore and we’re always learning. She quoted a New York Times article that said “on a typical day, we take in the equivalent of about 174 newspapers’ worth of information, five times as much as we did in 1986.” Take a second to let that sink in. We take in 174 newspapers’ worth of information every single day. Our brains certainly need to establish some sort of procedure and filing system to be able to process this degree of information every day.

This is why being able to master a skill like agility can help set us up to achieve success.

And once my brain finally digests all of the information we learned at INBOUND 2014, I’ll certainly have more to share. Stay tuned!


Christy Goodman is senior account executive for WordWrite Communications. She canChristy Goodman bereached at and on Twitter @christylgoodman.

Weekly Wrap: Crisis Management Edition


Have you ever had that “oops, what did I just do wrong” feeling? Well, you are not alone. In the personal world, making a mistake can impact the strength of a relationship. In the academic world, making a mistake can result in poor test grades. In the business world, a mistake has the potential to erupt into a full-blown crisis. 


Social Media Lessons from DiGiorno’s Hashtag Failhash mistake

Handling a crisis in the 21st century is like none other. With the help of social media, news spreads like wildfire. Take the iconic DiGiorno Pizza, for instance. DiGiorno’s community manager saw a popular hashtag trending on Twitter and without thinking, joined in on the fun. On behalf of the entire DiGiorno chain, the community manager tweets, “#WhyIStayed You had pizza.” Seems cool enough, right? Think again. #WhyIStayed is a trending hashtag because it gives people a chance to share personal infliction and abuse stories. While the tweet was immediately taken down, screenshots were shared across social media platforms, landing fans into a fury. Read more to see how DiGiorno’s social media representative handled the crisis the right way. 

PR Week

Mathis to Communicators: Speak up when you see something wrong

Listen carefully to the SVP of marketing at Standard & Poor’s: “Tomorrow’s headlines are being written today. At an organization, the seeds of whatever crises are there.” Take these words to heart and remember that business decisions are just like flowers. Flowers begin small and ultimately flourish into an astounding sight. Heed with caution though, because whether your flowers die or thrive is dependent upon you and your fellow coworkers. It is imperative to recognize that a business is founded on its corporate culture, reputation and leadership abilities. Take a peek to read more helpful advice on why speaking up when something feels wrong keeps your crisis plan a step above the rest.


Four Things Leaders Must Do in a Crisis 

When a crisis hits, it hurts. Understanding how to effectively handle a crisis may save your business from burning up in flames. What do you do? Get the facts, fast. Come clean with the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Estimate the broadest possible fallout from the
crisis, triple it and realize that someone big is going to fall. No matter what, remember to be more proactive rather than reactive by working relentlessly with your organizational team. Read the four (somewhat funny) tips in depth to see what leaders must do when a significant crisis becomes known. 

Take note that all of these words of wisdom shared one common mantra: honesty is the best policy. When a hashtag fail plummets a pizza chain into social media misery, remain calm and admit the wrong. When your thoughtful business ideas flourish to success, keep watering the seeds. And when a crisis ultimately does erupt, remember to be brutally honest by following the four CEO advised tips. And no matter what, remember that at the end of the day you are not alone. Take a minute and evaluate the professional mistakes you have made in the past. How have you used those lessons to propel your business forward? 

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Julia Pizzutti is an intern for WordWrite Communications. You can find her on Twitter @julzutti93.

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