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When Small Talk Feels Big

When Small Talk Feels Big

Small talk doesn’t always feel small. Like when you’re meeting a new colleague for the first time. Or mingling at a networking event. Or you’re hoping some chitchat will break the ice before a high-stakes meeting.

Founder Ellie Hearne reflects on why workplace small talk matters and how to master it.

Curiosity: Your Secret Weapon

Curiosity: Your Secret Weapon

It’s never been easier to quell our curiosity. However, learning to embrace it can be tremendously valuable in our professional lives.

Considering a Career Change? You're Not Alone.

Considering a Career Change? You're Not Alone.

Certainly, job searches can be tough. But looking for a completely new kind of job, or trying to break into a new industry? That can be so anxiety provoking for people that they avoid ever even trying.

But with the right strategy, it is possible to make the transition. 

The Primary Trait of Successful Leaders? Take a Guess

The Primary Trait of Successful Leaders? Take a Guess

“What’s the number-one trait successful leaders share?”

I ask this question at the start of some of our leadership workshops - in companies as varied in size, industry, age, and stage as you could imagine.

The answers are always interesting. Beyond the surface-interpretation of “these traits are what makes a good leader,” the responses also speak to each person’s values and to the organization’s culture.

Pencil or Ink founder Ellie Hearne on the trait leaders should cultivate.

Networking Doesn't Have to Be Awkward

Networking Doesn't Have to Be Awkward

Many people treat networking as a transactional process in which they need to “sell” something: their services, product, brand, job qualifications. 

Yes, new relationships will often open doors to new jobs, clients, or sales. But if you’re only out to help yourself, others will quickly pick up on that, and your efforts will backfire.

Instead, approach networking in a thoughtful and considered way – as the relationship-building opportunity it is.