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Your attentiveness to the word 'structured' when talking about internal communications or meetings is key.  Without the structure and advanced notice as to the specifics of the agenda of meetings it often serves to enable tangential conversation resulting in discourse, poor morale and feelings of inadequacy. 


In so many meetings I have witnessed a cursory agenda of topics but not what I consider the prerequisite of what exactly will be expected in the discussion. With so many issues that may be at hand on any given day, especially emergent situations, it is imperative that the leader let the attendees know exactly what will be discussed so that they are prepared. 


How many meetings have we been to that end up fruitless in goals because of statements like "I will have to get back to you on that data, or I will pull that together and get it to you."  The more specifics you can give the attendees for preparation, the better the outcomes.  It is great to be a boy scout with an 'always be prepared' mantra but its is impossible to be prepared without the particulars as there are always so many variables. As you say, no one wants surprises and the best leaders are the ones who strategically (anticipate the needs) structure meetings to tamp those possibilities. As time is money, it is better to invest a bit more in the groundwork plans rather than have to continually renovate because of errors in the original foundation. 

2 days, 10 hours ago on Structured Meetings Make for Better Internal Communications

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Isn't it amazing how smart our guts can be, Susan, and even though it proves itself over and over it is often the third runner up to our hearts and brains in trust? I think it has something to do with eating away at all the BS we are fed leaving you with the nutrients of truth, transparency and instinct. It is a great equalizer when attention is paid. 

6 days, 10 hours ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Susan Cellura

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This headline checklist process is heady (intoxicating) in breadth and depth! No wonder your team is always giddy while they work ;)

1 week ago on How to Write a Compelling Headline

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@biggreenpen Liking the new avatar Paula ;)

1 week, 1 day ago on Should We Take the “Internal” Out of Internal Communications?

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I too am a fan of the 'internal' communications under the corporate communications umbrella for the reason you stated, consistency in messaging, not to be insulated or isolated but respected and informed as you would any of your stakeholder groups. 

1 week, 1 day ago on Should We Take the “Internal” Out of Internal Communications?

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@OpEdMarketing In our circumstances, Robert, we find it is the older generation who has the most difficulty with conversing on the subject and the younger able to be more open. My point is we are making progress but not fast enough for the generation that was involved directly with so many. It is sad.

1 week, 1 day ago on Is ‘Mental’ Health a Misnomer? Why We Need to Destigmatize Depression

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Thank you both for sharing your personal stories as mental health has so long been pushed to the back  of the closet, always there but infrequently talked about and cloaked in darkness. I respect you both for your willingness to speak openly about your emotions and experiences as so many of our families experience similar emotions.

I am truly concerned about the rise of emotional stress, depression and the ensuing consequences (self harm) in our youth. I personally am seeing several of my friends suffering in their parental status with children in crisis and at a loss as to avenues to intercede, self recrimination as to what they did wrong and the tragic implications of what it can do to the mind, body and soul of our youth that are not emotionally developed or equipped to deal with their feelings of the stereotypes of 'not being normal'. 

Our educational systems, religious affiliations and social systems of support are being taxed daily on this and our health system for mental health care is serious lacking. Through open communication, awareness to the pervasiveness of this illness and educating the public as you have here, hopefully the stigma will evaporate in transparency and the closet door will forever be ajar. 

1 week, 1 day ago on Is ‘Mental’ Health a Misnomer? Why We Need to Destigmatize Depression

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@Eleanor Pierce Thanks, I just received the invite and already have a headache as can't figure out how to put my avatar in despite instructions that it is in settings. Oh well I am just a smile for now. 


2 weeks ago on Hello Ello: Is the Latest Social Network for You?

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@Eleanor Pierce Figured everyone was coveting their invites for those that will actually use it rather than a be a voyeur but thanks for your hospitality and I will take a gander. I had just put myself on the waiting list earlier. ahannan6835@gmail.com

2 weeks, 1 day ago on Hello Ello: Is the Latest Social Network for You?

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@Eleanor Pierce @annelizhannan @biggreenpen However, if I had an invite, I would go and check out the merchandise ;)


2 weeks, 1 day ago on Hello Ello: Is the Latest Social Network for You?

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@biggreenpen Funny about the FOMO. I am starting to feel like these platforms are getting to be more like a BOGO! Although curious about Ello, I try to avoid returns and already have trendy items in my SM closet that I wear once and then they just hang there collecting dust.

2 weeks, 1 day ago on Hello Ello: Is the Latest Social Network for You?

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A sweet bouquet to this list. As one who has a tendency to swill and spit on all things numbers, I try to abstain from data drunkenness. Thankfully this will only make me tipsy ;)

2 weeks, 3 days ago on Analytics Resources and Data for Communications Pros

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@Eleanor Pierce Great expression "high warmup threshold"!


2 weeks, 6 days ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Tom Martin

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Tom's New Orleans spirit is clear in this post as I can imagine how difficult it was to rebound from the devastation of Katrina on his business. In heading over to his Twitter account I saw more of this admirable quality with his bio "favors stiff drinks and good debates." Who doesn't know how great debates can get after a few stiff drinks ;)

2 weeks, 6 days ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Tom Martin

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@ginidietrich Might have to be an intervention with the kill and gunning references but I am game if JB is the mediator as always a sucker around the grey ghosts ;)

3 weeks, 1 day ago on Use Lead Magnets to Generate Qualified Leads

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@ginidietrich That's all I have, not punny either ;) I do enjoy reading people's way of writing, word choices and structuring of sentences. It tells me a lot about them. So many I would like to meet in person. 

3 weeks, 1 day ago on Use Lead Magnets to Generate Qualified Leads

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Wow, talk about straight talk and simplicity. Exactly why so many of us consider you the 'lead' and a 'magnet' for great content. Never repelling, always attracting and delightfully pulling us in!

3 weeks, 1 day ago on Use Lead Magnets to Generate Qualified Leads

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You may be fearful of aging but from what I see of the company you are keeping today, they are a great indication of a long, enjoyable future. I wouldn't count on them for catheter care but surely for keeping you peeing in laughter ;)

3 weeks, 6 days ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Jess Ostroff

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Terrific insight about timing and knowing your audience. I admire so many of our late night show hosts who do their research and know where their audience is on a particular night based on current events, news of the day and yes, social media as a great barometer. So many of them know when not to overproduce in terms of newsjacking or bring too much levity into a tragic situation. 


It would serve brands well to learn from their 'visual acts' in building a story to a crescendo rather than just bleating out infographics, blogs or newsjacking on an event just because it may be current in the news. I tend to think this is due to automation of posts by corporations and instead of thinking about the impact of the particular topic on a specific day (taking the pulse/temperament of the audience in real time) they just have the story in the pipeline without timing forethought and thus often leave the audience not laughing at all. 

4 weeks, 1 day ago on What Standup Comedians Can Teach Us About Visual Storytelling

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I identify with you Kerry on the investment in a career (profession) that evolved into quite something else. I originally received my degree in nursing and just after two years exited swearing I would never go back (gosh, no one told me there would be sick people, I just thought the white uniform was cute;). Fast forward 28 years later and I was back at it. My point, although I may have done it differently if I had the opportunity to rewind, no education goes unworthy if you build on the knowledge and experience.  For my third act, I would like to go to the dogs but haven't quite figured that out. 


I am also with your authenticity vs transparency thoughts. Some of us just don't show our best side with with full exposure and would do well to set the dimmer between 'need to know and 'too much information'. Having said that, I am a fan of your selfies which show off your flawless Irish complexion and ginger-like locks ;)

1 month ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Kerry Gorgone

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@Howie Goldfarb @annelizhannan @ginidietrich I can't speak with knowledge of Walmart's business and labor practices other than there are many corporations that need work in this area. With the diploma issue, I am with you, why didn't he finish the credits? To me this is the grey area;)

1 month ago on The Squishy Grey Line of Ethics

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@RobBiesenbach @belllindsay I agree Rob, Unfortunately if corporations started making exceptions to their standards on an individual basis (whether deserved or right) then it would open a Pandora's Box of employee law suits for the HR department. If they want to make this the exception now they would have to rewrite their policies for all. Changing the policy could've been done if they wanted but they couldn't go back and forth. 

1 month ago on The Squishy Grey Line of Ethics

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@Howie Goldfarb Howie, are you referring to the NYT response back at Tovar's piece or have they made a response to the Tovar exit?

1 month ago on The Squishy Grey Line of Ethics

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@ClayMorgan Beyond infuriating to inexcusable. Whether it is a failing of ethics, lack of understanding of what constitutes plagiarism or lack of understanding, there is no excuse if you're in the business of writing about or sharing content of another. Don't be in the business. Would you consider it OK if a surgeon performed a procedure which caused you harm that she just didn't know or understand the implications. It is our job, in our chosen professions, to know better. 

1 month ago on The Squishy Grey Line of Ethics

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Oh my, so sorry about that lost opportunity. I know how much you wanted it! Not to worry though, I am sure the NFL will come back to your door when they get their backbone on ethics straightened out;) 


Sad story about David Tovar and surprised is an understatement as respect his work for Walmart but I am not so sure I consider it grey when he did not receive a diploma and yet put forth on his resume that he did. This is black and white to me, an untruth. Perhaps I am missing something in the Bloomberg piece?  I can separate the outstanding ability to perform a job function with the requirements (degree) by Walmart for the SVP job. That is Walmart's prerogative. For him, I hope another company will not have that litmus but rather look at his body of work. 

1 month ago on The Squishy Grey Line of Ethics

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@bennrosales What a shame. That is an absurd statement about AP classes; they are not the same thing, yes more work as the title implies "advanced" as the higher education systems recognize with course credit, enrollment or early acceptance etc.  If they are the same thing in that educational institution then there is something wrong with their program! 


The role of teachers and counselors should be to share factual information about programs or courses with all the good, bad and ugly so that children, in tandem with their parents, can make an informed decision about their direction of choice.  That statement is indeed bias whether or not it is gender based and indeed damages the trust bond. Never, never should an outside influence especially an educator discourage or intimate what a child 'can't do" or tithe their self-worth... that just burns my butt.  I hope you interceded on behalf of your daughter as the cog of the trust wheel that connects to all the dynamics of education, social, peer, and religious influences. Even if she is unsuccessful in the course, she will have known it was her choice, she had the courage and will to try, buttressed by those with proven trust (you) and is shaping her own reality. I respect your parenting with the obvious care, observation and recognition of the challenges our children (girls) are faced with in all facets of their formative years.  I will fold up my soapbox now as confident that your young lady has an involved mentor to guide her strong.



1 month ago on Parents: are WE the real reason girls aren’t dominating STEM careers?

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Interesting list of differentiators but I don't believe you can be a good leader unless you have understood or experienced the management process. For instance the leader, to have his/her eye on the horizon had better understand the bottom line or the ship may sink on its way . The same with the short range view versus long range perspective. To attain long term goals, short term objectives should be met. 


For me, what sets apart a manager from a leader is that the leader fully understands (not saying an expert in) ALL the functions of management and has the ability to take and incorporate them beyond those narrow limitations into innovation, original thought and future vision while the manager 'may' not. 

1 month, 1 week ago on Managers vs. Leaders: The Traits of Each

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Interesting, as a baby boomer, despite the sizeable population data, I don't feel ignored as with your GenX but rather irrelevant in opinion and desire. I often feel that I am dictated (marketed) to for what I 'should' be or should have rather that what I 'want' to be or want to have. 

1 month, 1 week ago on Why does the marketing media continue to ignore Gen X’ers (and focus on Millennials)?

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@ClayMorgan haha, did you watch the kid first, make a rash decision before fully vetting all the videos and then try to go back (3 hours later) only when you saw the community riled by the Lip Syncing ? Hmm, sounds like you're pulling a Goodell ;)

1 month, 1 week ago on Gin and Topics: Meet the Exasperating Kid

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I'd like to see Katie Nolan and Trey get together for a video as they both are so articulate in how exasperating it is to feel sidelined by the loudmouthed, righteous wailing of boys ;)

1 month, 1 week ago on Gin and Topics: Meet the Exasperating Kid

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No doubt that gender bias in careers continues but I have seen evolving change over my five decades on this earth from the narrow fairies and princesses scenarios to firefighters and pulmonologists vistas.  I can recall vividly being fostered (by parents and school counselors)  toward a career in nursing without any thought or consideration for medicine despite credible academic record and desire.  


One of the biggest changes I see today is the mentoring and guidance from outside the parental unit where mentors and counselors in our educational, sports and extended social groups are weighing in constructive collaboration to assist parents in exposing them to the broader spectrum of careers sans bounds of "gender identity".  Children are exposed to a broader spectrum of opportunity outside what may be a narrow family structure. No more the columns dividing genders in career choices in the guidance offices but rather a single list of career 'title' options. Undoubtedly, whether innocent or intentional, bias does exist. It is my hope that the expression I often recite when asked about my career fostering choice was 'they (parents) didn't know any better' is never heard again. Today this is inexcusable as we do and should know better. 

1 month, 1 week ago on Parents: are WE the real reason girls aren’t dominating STEM careers?

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@jasonkonopinski I don't see the story as apocryphal as I watched this campaign grow from infancy in my location (Boston) with Mr. Frates. I think it snowballed as a result of the impetus of Boston College fans and local media. From there the ALS organization saw potential and grabbed onto the sensation for the national campaign. Originally 'this' Ice Bucket Challenge was for a specific fund set up for Mr. Frates, the ALS organization hijacked (IMHO) the initial momentum to capture a larger fund base (not that I can blame them). The virality had its consequences and double edged sword between raising such an enormous amount of money with the celebrity social media involvement versus original purpose of the challenge (for whom and for what) and the involvement of a large organization with all the scrutiny and baggage they carry with distribution of dollars--the short lived seeking of a trademark patent also didn't help. 


As far as ALS sustaining the funding next year, I doubt it. It was a major financial as well as brand/disease windfall that I am thankful for (I had a brother succumb to ALS) and feel that most people contribute annually to these types of organizations based on personal connection.

1 month, 1 week ago on What’s Wrong With the Viral Fad?

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@ginidietrich Well I know you wouldn't be making any Hail Mary passes in desperation.

1 month, 2 weeks ago on The NFL is Missing the Cardinal Rule of Crisis Management

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Fumble, fumble, fumbling with Goodell (NFL) way offsides. Sad to see it took so long to raise the flag. Agree with @MWPRINCight that each case should be reviewed individually (for truth and accuracy) but with violence off the field, the disciplinary action should be clear and universal as I don't hold to degrees of abuse against women. A kick, a slap, a punch, a twist of the arm is violence, one is no less than the other, nor should be left to levels of punishment. Let's level the field once and for all of us. 

1 month, 2 weeks ago on The NFL is Missing the Cardinal Rule of Crisis Management

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Great story Danny. "The boy with the bread is in every one of us"...let it rise!

1 month, 2 weeks ago on The Boy With the Bread – A Business Parable

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Charlotte and Zoe are adorable but since I missed out on the childbearing period, I have to go with Millie as i am in full swing in the period of carrying extra bags period.  How can Ms. Bell not know Jon Oliver!!! Aren't all Canadians somehow related to the Brits? ;)

1 month, 2 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: Goodbye Gecko. We’ll Miss You.

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@belllindsay Formerly on Jon Stewart's Daily Show. Great comedian and now has his own show. 


1 month, 2 weeks ago on Gin and Topics: Goodbye Gecko. We’ll Miss You.

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This is so timely as I had started following Laura on Twitter just the other day. Glad you are bringing more light to the national problem of binge TV watching, Laura, as we seem to be a growing segment (at least from what I am reading among the Spin Sucks crazies). At times, I am so deep in the addiction that my family has to put the 'clicker' under lock and key. Alas perhaps a support group would be appropriate but honestly I would prefer to join STVWA-Serial TV Watchers Anonymous! I think you may be have hit upon another growth opportunity ;)

1 month, 2 weeks ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Laura Mansfield

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@ginidietrich Haha, the way I live now, I am a ghost...the boo-hoo and boo who? kind ;(

1 month, 2 weeks ago on Happy Birthday, Spin Sucks!

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Happy Birthday, Spin Sucks! Indeed your baby has come a long way. Delighted to be in tandem for the ride as the scenery is always inspiring whether through the thunder of discussions, clarity through the fog of social media marketing and public relations or the breakthrough sunshine of new ideas, concepts and strategies. As long as you are steering, I will peddle along.

1 month, 2 weeks ago on Happy Birthday, Spin Sucks!

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I feel like a kindergartner with a shiny new tool box to explore. Thanks, Jess for showing me how to write, chart and paint between the lines!

1 month, 2 weeks ago on Five Must-Have Free Visual Marketing Tools

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Thanks for sharing your honest emotions about blogging, Ken. Your catharsis is refreshing.  I am feeling the similar emotions about social media in general. I was finding it more of a chore to keep up, share and comment leading up to the summer months and pretty much was absent for the summer. I found it becoming more of an addiction than enjoyment, feeling guilty if I didn't tweet, share or post something on a daily basis and I don't even blog! With absence the heart has not grown fonder but rather more difficult to reinvigorate the energy needed for enjoyment. Like you, I do recognize its importance, appreciate the commitment and respect those that consistently have the desire to participate and will continue to see you on this bike path. 

1 month, 3 weeks ago on Blogging: The Rise and Fall of an Addiction

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Laughing at the 'Proof It" section as one who is used to not capitalizing on Twitter with hashtags.  The word asinine comes to mind with a hashtag ;) Thanks for the Twitter chart flow also, missed that one.  Your post was a great read, Zach, with the resources linked. 

2 months ago on Hashtagging 101: Guidelines for #Winning on Social Media

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@steve_dodd IMO also in one way broadcast of personal opinion. Only benefit is I don't have many disagreements when speaking to myself...usually ;)


2 months ago on Two Lessons from Most Commented on Blog Posts

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Finally you write about an area I can declare myself an expert...time off and brain breaks! Enjoy your time and family but don't think for a moment that we will keep our comments to ourselves while you're away.  You have taught your children well ;)

2 months ago on Two Lessons from Most Commented on Blog Posts

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So busy was me... counting the waves to hit the beach, I missed this yesterday. Taking a break now to surf and appreciate all the comments. The post definitely electrified many a nerve, comments hit the funny bone as well as the achilles heel, but mostly I hope it shocks the mind in retrospection of mutual respect for others personal value and professional work beyond the scope of time.  A basic human quality we seem to have downgraded while aggrandising self-importance.  Now back to my priorities as changing tides expected here soon. 

2 months ago on The “I’m Busy” Badge of Pride

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Maybe because it is Friday and I am off to see the Irish Rovers (summer is too short on Cape Cod ) but can't get past the pencil video as @Danny Brown always seems to get the lead out of everything he experiences, whether lead, leading, led or a bit of Led Zeppelin in his writing...on the way to heaven ;) I enjoy your stairways.


2 months, 1 week ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Danny Brown

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Bravo Ken. This recent campaign has brought more awareness and dollars for research of ALS then I have ever seen in the twenty years since my brother succumbed to this cruel disease that robs one of body yet leaves the mind acute to suffer the pain. I count myself among the fortunate who continue to have the ability to smile at each video and thankful for any and all who have either demonstrated effort to raise the awareness through the ice bucket challenge, commenting on others efforts to keep it front of mind or reaching into their pockets.  Thank you for your contribution. 

2 months, 1 week ago on Of Ice Buckets and Naysayers: Why I Chose to Do the ALS #IceBucketChallenge

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Without a doubt, everyone should jump in the pool with Marcus and you can definitely trust he won't be bringing any 'crapola' ;)

2 months, 2 weeks ago on The Spin Sucks Inquisition: Marcus Sheridan

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