Tag Archives: Leadership Development

Are you building a strong brand for success?

I see it every day… People show up at a networking event, or post something really cool on social media hoping to connect them to a goal or outcome. Then you look around and think “where did they go”? How about when you send an email that may or may not have a call to action, but you’re hoping for a response just to say “I got it” …but don’t hear anything but crickets.  So many thoughts run through our heads from “did they get it” to “do they really even care”? Branding is more important today than ever with so many channels to better position you or your company in social media settings to online reviews. Many times, people think the image they are presenting is their brand, but this isn’t even the case. Branding is about what others think of you by their engagement from introducing you to someone in an email or networking event, to liking of sharing a post on LinkedIn or other social media channels. Your brand is everything when it comes to business, and a leader in the workplace as well as in your community. You already have a brand whether you know it or not. The key to a successful brand is to know who you are (self-awareness), then purposefully developing it… every day.

I was recently having coffee with an HR / Talent Acquisition Leader in Dallas when we bruce_on truck original picturegot on the subject of relocating talent. He said “Bruce, every time I think about employee relocation, I think of you”. I was honored and humbled and thought about the importance of my brand. A great brand starts with a great product, then great marketing, but quickly leads to the person or people representing the brand. When I think about spaghetti sauce, I think about Ragu. When I hear the name, John Maxwell, I think about leadership coaching and author of leadership books. When I think about Abraham Lincoln, I think about US President and a man with courage during tough times.

What do people think of when they hear your name or see you on social media? Is it what you are hoping for or do people have a different perspective? When you have alignment with your actions and values, your brand will stand out!

Here is my question for you:  Are your shaping your brand, or is your brand shaping you?

Chick-Fil-A, McDonalds, and Starbucks all have incredible employer brands. We immediately have a thought or opinion when we think about visiting these companies or read about them in the news. Most companies know and understand the importance of their brands because it drives their business goals and their culture. They will do what they can to protect it while working to improve it daily. Personal branding is like employer branding. We are constantly trying to find ways to elevate our brand in the market to make impact. This isn’t just for salespeople trying to push a service or product, it’s for anyone in the workplace that is trying to make a difference from an HR professional, to a leader in operations. Personal branding takes a laser focus approach to cultivate every day. When you are intentional about building a great brand, you will inspire others to be better and become more which will ultimately bring more joy and success on your career journey.

In 2017, I published the book, Find Your Lane. This was a GPS approach to growing and planning with purpose, and sharing with others to find more joy in your career. Once you find your lane, it’s time to start building your brand to make maximum impact on others.

What are you doing each day to build your brand? I want to hear from you…

Quote of the week:

“Be the best YOU that YOU can be.” (Ozzie Smith, Baseball Hall of Famer)

Call to Action: Send me your ideas or comment below on how you are shaping your personal brand in the workplace. Are you where you want to be, or is it time to start cultivating? …or possibly time to hit refresh? I look forward to hearing from you!

Book Cover Find Your Lane FRONT

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Are your shaping your brand?” with Bruce  Waller, for more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

What’s your leadership “ringtone”?

My mom was recently sharing with me when I call her phone, she knows it’s me calling because of the ring tone song she has set to play called “The Boys of Fall” by country singer Kenny Chesney. It’s one of my favorite songs about the brotherhood of football. I am so glad she connects me to this song when I call (which reminds me that I need to call her today😊).

Many people set their ring tones to different songs or set emails to different sounds letting them know when someone’s calling or when an email or text message arrives. It’s a fun way to alert us about incoming communication which reminds me of a story… it’s another type of ringtone known as “The Corporate Ringtone”. bruce_on truck original picture

Several years ago, I joined a small relocation company in Dallas, Texas as the operations manager. During my first week, I was walking into the office when I heard a different kind of phone ringer. I had noticed our phones ringing throughout the day, but not like this ring. It was a different ringtone sound you would hear in school when classes changed and had a longer ring to it so that you would immediately recognize as being different than the “normal” phone ringer. As I heard the first ring finish, our office manager quickly shouted from around the corner “hurry, someone answer the phone, IT’S CORPORATE!” When the call was completed, I asked about the corporate ring tone. The office manager explained that the corporate set up a different ring tone so you know they were calling and we need to answer this call within two rings or we will get in trouble.  What?!!! This comment concerned me because it sounded more like a ringtone of fear and intimidation. I now started wondering if I had made a good decision to join the company.

Does it really matter who is calling? Shouldn’t we pick up the phone as soon as possible for anyone. It doesn’t matter if it’s a corporate executive, a customer/client, or one of our van operator drivers needing assistance. When the phone rings, we should answer it with a positive passionate attitude ready to serve the person calling. In this case, there was definitely a sense of fear among the office staff that was not very healthy and wondered if this could/would eventually change. Unfortunately, this didn’t change and I eventually left the organization. When you lead with fear, you will limit the organization…

If you are going to set a ringtone for your corporate office, let me recommend some different “ringtones” for your team to thrive for success:

  • Ringtone #1 “A Matter of Trust” (Billy Joel) – Trust is the foundation of leadership.
  • Ringtone #2 “Care” (Kid Rock) – People give more when they know you care.
  • Ringtone #3 “Empathy” (Alanis Morissette) – Seeing through the lens of others will help you to get the most out of your team.

As I write this post, I am listening to another favorite by Tim McGraw called Humble and Kind which would also be a great ringtone for your team…

What ringtone would you recommend for your team?

Quote of the week: “The customer experience will never exceed the employee experience.” (Tony Bridwell)

Call to Action: Think about the ringtone you have set up for your employees and customers. Does it align with your values and principles? Start some dialogue this week about leading with purpose! As Kenny Chesney sings “Don’t Blink”!

This has been A Relocation Minute on “The Corporate Ringtone” with Bruce Waller, Book Cover Find Your Lane FRONTfor more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

This leadership trait will separate great leaders from good leaders in any company!

Several years ago, I was tasked with improving our quality at a small moving and storage company in Dallas, Texas due to low quality scores and continuous claims that was costing the company significant dollars coming straight from profits. In fact, the corporate office sent their quality team to meet with us and advised that we would be probation until the scores improved while I was enjoying my first week as the new operations leader. This was a day I will never forget. I immediately began thinking… “Did I make the right choice joining this company?”.  It was clear that the company lacked a training and development program and I needed to put a plan in motion… quickly.

The first thing I did was hire an operations leader that could help me train our team, as bruce_on truck original picturewell as hire, train, and motivate a staff to help us sustain a quality program for our customers and stakeholders. During the first week of hiring Hector, I knew that this wasn’t just any operations leader that could move the needle on our quality, this was someone that was going to move people.

So how did I know? He had passion…

When Hector arrived, we discussed implementing a training program for our moving crews. He immediately scheduled a training session. When I arrived at work the next day for training, I noticed he had chairs all lined up with the training materials… But there was something more that stood out. Hector also had purchased every moving crew member “A BROOM” to make sure crew members kept things clean. When they finish the moving job, they were expected to remove the trash for a clean home. When they leave the truck at the end of the day, they were to make sure it was left clean. When they walked into work each day, they were expected to be in uniform with a positive attitude. Hector wanted to make sure each employee understood the expectations, which was to have a “clean image” for excellence and to instill a sense of ownership in each team member.

When someone had passion, Hector knew it… and would do everything he could to develop that person for success! So, what is passion? It is simply caring about the job you are hired to do, as well as caring for the team members around you. It is taking ownership in everything you do. When you have passion, you are saying… I really care about this, so let’s make it the best we can for others to enjoy along the way.

I learned many things from Hector as a young leader including being a better leader myself from just being around him. His passion was infectious in business, and in his personal life. He taught me that when you have passion for something, you can move the needle in every situation, and most importantly, you can move the needle that will move peoples hearts…. simply because you care!

When you have positive passionate team members, you will experience excellent quality across all areas of your company! … but what about when you don’t have passionate team members? Well, then it will be time to do what Hector suggests… Get out the broom and start cleaning for success!

Call to Action: Do you have people with passion in your company. Find out what makes them go and then surround yourself, as well as your team members around them for success. It will fuel the fire for tremendous growth!

Quote of the week… “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” (Jim Rohn)  How passionate are you?

This has been A Relocation Minute on “passion makes the difference” with Bruce Book Cover Find Your Lane FRONTWaller, for more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

10 C’s to Cultivating Your Brand!

Last week we talked about the importance of brand positioning. I really enjoyed the engagement and interaction on social media with business leaders about their perspective and insight on the importance of branding in the workplace.

Some of the comments included:

  • “You need to define your brand or it will define you.” Steve Browne
  • “Know what you want to be known for. (Ryan Keating sharing 10Ks of personal branding)
  • “If my personal brand doesn’t reflect well, then it doesn’t matter what other name I have behind me.” Kevin Dawson
  • “Lack of effort or going above and beyond brightens the brand spotlight.” Bethany Wallace
  • “The most important thing is to be memorable…in a good way.” Dustin Paschal
  • “Surround myself with folks that are like minded and smarter than me.” Tom Cowlishaw
  • “You can’t help anyone if they are confused about who you are, what you do, and how well you do it.” Mark Waller
  • “Authentic Behavior Aligned With Purposeful Action to Positively Impact Others.” Mike Shaw
  • “Personal Brands = Reputation + Packaging + Style + Output + Regard.” (Greg Hawks shared Tom Peters formula)
  • “Branding = perception + interaction. You can only control half of that equation, make that interaction spectacular!” (Greg King)

As we can see, this is huge as a business leader in the workplace. So how can we cultivate our brand to make sure it is aligned with some of these comments and make it a brand we can be proud of? Today, I want to share 10 C’s of branding that just might elevate your brand and growth in the workplace!

  1. Be Committed! …to developing yourself to get better in you career. In my book, Find Your Lane, I share the importance of investing in yourself (Maintaining your vehicle), every day! This is developing and being committed to the process even when times get challenging..
  2. Being Consistent is one of the biggest keys to an effective brand, in your daily disciplines, in how you treat people and with your approach to your everyday leadership.
  3. Collaborate with all stakeholders this includes HR, Recruiters, Business Unit leaders, Vendors, Executives for mastering a successful brand!
  4. Continuously improve and evolve yourself to improve your team which will improve your organization. Read books/industry articles, listen to podcasts, and network with others!
  5. Have the Courage to BE BOLD. Raise your hand, share your perspective and your voice.
  6. Be a Champion for your team, as well as others in the market that you partner with to make your brand a success. Help educate others about why your thoughts and have dialogue!
  7. Communication is critical with ALL stakeholders even when you have bad news. Be proactive and focus on pushing information rather than people having to pull it!.
  8. Change lanes when you need to. Find the lane that works best in your role!
  9. Challenge the status quo when you see an opportunity to make things better with your program, Your employees will appreciate your willingness to do the right thing.
  10. Have Compassion and empathy for others. See it from the lens of your employees and customers for best approach!.

Call to Action: Print these 10 C’s out and post on your wall to focus on ways to cultivate your brand. Start a conversation with others on the importance of branding and how they see you as well as ways they can cultivate their brand. It’s a win – win – win! Share your comments!

Quote of the Week… “He learned, He Loved, He became better.” (Mitch Albom)

This has been A Relocation Minute on “10 C’s to cultivating your brand” with Bruce Waller, For more information to help your talent with relocation, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out our my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

What’s Your Brand? Consider this strategy to position your brand for success…

Have you ever reached out to someone and not received a response? Have you ever been copied on an email only to wonder if the email received any follow up? How people respond is often how we view their brand.

Nike, Southwest Airlines, Google, McDonalds, and LinkedIn are some of the most well known employment brands in the world. When you see or hear about these companies, you immediately know what these brands represent.

…but what about your personal brand? Each company is made up of employees that have a personal brand that often reflects the employment brand or values of the company such as attitude, accountability, and relationships to name a few. How you communicate with others could position you as a leader of excellence which just might drive future opportunities for you in the organization. It could also reflect a negative perception even if you complete your daily tasks.

Have you ever thought about your personal brand? Your brand isn’t what YOU think it is, it’s what OTHERS think it is when THEY see you or hear your name.

What brand do you represent when you show up at work as the HR leader, or as a sales leader making a call, or as a volunteer in your community, or at your gym to workout, or in your community, or even at home with your family after work? How do you communicate with others? How about your approach to social media? Are you a learner, and a resource to share with others? … or a leader or influencer in your industry?

You see, we all have a brand whether we think we do or not. People that have met you have a thought or opinion when they see you or hear your name. What are people saying about you? One of the ways we learn about our brand is to evaluate feedback which can help us decide if we should continue building on our current brand or if we should consider a strategy to reshape or re-purpose our brand for excellence.

So how do we know what our brand positioning is as a leader or future leader? Some of the well known brands above invest and position their brand to attract others. We should also invest in our brand to attract others to join our teams or partner with our organization. Engagement on social media posts can be a marker as we are now more social than ever. We can also learn from LinkedIn recommendations when people share comments about working with you? However, the best way is to simply ask some of your colleagues and business partners!

Here are two (2) questions to consider asking…

  1. What words would you use to describe my brand as an employee or business partner?
  2. What is the best thing you like about my brand for me to keep working on as a leader?

In my book, “Find Your Lane” I talk about the importance of “investing in your people zone” to help you steer toward the Lane of Fulfillment. Today, I challenge you to reach out to three (3) people and ask them the questions above.. It might provide you some insight to help calibrate your “career GPS” to drive your brand with purpose and make the most of your leadership journey!

So how would you describe my brand? I would enjoy seeing your response in comments below. It’s a great time to position our brands to help others drive leadership with purpose…

Quote of the week: “Feedback is a gift” (Shelley Zajic, Global Head of HR)

Call to Action: Have the courage this week to reach out to three (3) people close to you and ask about your brand and decide if you like the brand or if you should consider reshaping it for the future. Let me know how it goes. … or just start a conversation with someone you know. I am confident it will have impact on you as you continue driving your career with purpose.

This has been A Relocation Minute on “what’s your brand” with Bruce Waller, for more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

Would you be invited to “The Masters” in your profession?

In the words of Jim Nance, “The Masters is a tradition like no other”. This is a major golf championship tournament played each year on a legendary golf course where only the best of the best in golf are invited to play for this prestigious championship. It’s always fun watching the leaderboard on the final day as players move up and down chasing the title. These players are the best in the world which is why they are called “The Masters”.

These professionals didn’t become masters overnight. Many have been working on their craft since childhood putting in the work to one day be reassured for the championship. It’s a dream for the winner to be able to put on “the green jacket” to mark being a “masters” champion leaving their legacy in the history books.

As I watch these players on the final day, I observed many common threads these “masters” have in common that we can all learn from so we can work each day to be masters business leaders in our organizations.

So what are they?

Here are six traits to help you start a conversation about goals to work toward “the masters” in your profession!

  1. Focus. Before the day, each player plans a strategy on how they want to play the golf course and stay focused on execution of every shot! What strategies are you focused on each day to help you achieve year end results?
  2. Resilient. When a player has a bad hole, they understand how to regroup and continue their focus on making good shots through the round. Sometimes we have a bad day in HR with an unexpected outcome or a salesperson might lose a sell that he/she was counting on. We need to be resilient and keep working toward our desired outcomes.
  3. Commitment. It takes years of practice to become a master. Players hit shot after shot from sunrise to sunset. What do you practice each day as a daily discipline? Are you networking, working on an important presentation, or preparing for that next big meeting? There are some days when you may not feel like putting in the work… Do it anyway!
  4. Desire. To be “master” takes a burning desire to be the best! If you want to elevate your leadership, you need to have a strong anchor or “WHY” to drive each day with purpose. When Patrick Reed, 2018 Masters Champion was interviewed, he shared that he had a goals of winning in 2018 including a major. What are your goals? Write them down and review to make sure you have an anchor!
  5. Collaborative. Each player has a caddie to talk with during the round to discuss strategy and alignment with execution. Who are you talking with each day in your office. Do you have a mentor, business partner or group of leaders to meet with during the week? If you manage HR, are you collaborating with each of your stakeholders and business partners to achieve best results when on boarding, relocating, or developing talent?
  6. Continuous Improvement. One of the questions for the runner up was, “what can you learn from this tournament?” I love this question and listen closely to the response because this is where the power lies. Masters players always have something they want to work on to improve. They are always working on their grip, their swing, their putting and more everyday. They never accept “having arrived”. What is a skill or discipline that you can work on this week or this month to move you closer to mastery? The habit of continues improvement will move you closer to becoming “master” in your profession!

Oh… and they work really hard everyday!

Do you have any other traits that you add to this list? Please share in the comments.

Quote of the week: “We can issue you everything, but desire!” -Walter Causey

Call to Action: Do you have a mentor or someone to collaborate with? What are your goals? Ask them to help you identify a skill that will help you get closer to your goals. You might be closer to “The Masters” than you think! Find your lane and Drive with purpose!

This has been A Relocation Minute on “The Masters” with Bruce Waller, for more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!

What is success to you?

In his new book, Million Dollar Habits, Brian Tracy defines success as follows:

“Success is the ability to live your life the way you want to love it, doing what you most enjoy, surrounded by people you admire and respect.”

I absolutely love this. It doesn’t say anything about money or fame… it’s about living life the way you want it. Yes, money gives you options and fame often gives you a platform to share your message, but at the end of the day… it’s about how you want to live your life. 

This is the essence of my book, Find Your Lane… the ability to navigate your career that gives you a chance to experience success as described above. It starts with you. I call it maintaining your vehicle, which is the importance of investing in yourself. If you want to experience success, then you must find a way to define what it means to you…

Here are 3 things that may help you on your journey…

  1. Perspective… Be intentional each day by creating time in the morning or evening to read and think about whats important to you. This will lead to fresh ideas and strategies to apply for acceleration in your career.
  2. Plan. Be purposeful and invest time to plan and set goals each week that will be most  meaningful. Invest 15 minutes to review expected outcomes at end of each day. It is like planning your road map on a trip. It will make the difference in your results.
  3. People. In my book, I call this “Investing in your people zone“. Be purposeful and open minded as you connect with people. Find common threads and look for ways to be open minded and transparent to help each other. Remember that “Your network will be your net worth”. Relationships really do matter!

Quote of the week: “When you learn, teach. When you get, give.” -Maya Angelou

Call to Action: What is your definition of success? Write it down and share with others… I would really enjoy hearing your perspective! Send me an email bwaller@goarmstrong.com

This has been A Relocation Minute on “what is success ” with Bruce Waller, For more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out my social media Facebook and Twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon, or Barnes and Noble. Available on Kindle edition too!