Read an Excerpt
It's your move. Are you ready? Of course you are! There's nothing more stimulatingthan change, and this book is about making positive changes in yourlife and work. Too many people think about what they could do someday.You're ready to do something today. You're ready to make a winning move,and we're here to help you make many of them in lots of different ways. You'llget to know yourself better as you meet others in this book who are like you.You'll also learn from those unlike you. Keep their point of view in perspectiveas you move along in the game. You will be energized and up to date withthe latest information on successful work and life strategies.
You'll tap into what we've learned throughout our twenty-plus-year careersas speakers, seminar leaders, consultants, and coaches, working with thousandsof people whose goal is self-improvement. You'll share in the lessonsabout how to play the game successfully that our clients have learned. You'llfollow the footsteps of the people we've interviewed specifically for this bookand learn from their moves as they share their honest insights, mistakes, andwins. We'll help you find the life and work success you're looking for withpractical, experience-based moves that have already been proven to win. We'reglad you're ready!
Who are we and why did we write this book? First, we are longtime friendsand colleagues who share a common love for people, communication, creativework, and learning. Years ago, we met in a commercial acting class inChicago, later worked together as singing "wenches" in a medieval themerestaurant, and along the way established busy seminar and consulting businessesin the image and communication fields. We've learned a lot as professionals,and we've developed a network of savvy folks who have graciouslycontributed to this book. With all of this help, along with years of work andlife experience, we joined forces to write this book on how you can make theright moves.
Cyndi's creative, outgoing husband, Rob, and two active teenage children,Ryan and Phelan, provide both balance and chaos in her life. Writing aboutthe courage to make moves strongly echoes her personal belief system; shehas always respected and admired those people who take initiative. She haschanged careers in life, balanced two careers simultaneously, and managed asuccessful home-based business for fourteen years. She's also had many opportunitiesto reevaluate moves and challenges in her personal life, havingbounced back from a fire that destroyed all of her belongings, from being fired,and from stress as a high school overachiever.
Professionally, Cyndi has a master's degree in communication studies from NorthwesternUniversity and a bachelor's degree in theatre education from Illinois StateUniversity. She is a speaker and seminar leader who helps people become stellarcommunicators. For the past twenty-two years, she has presented workshopsacross the United States and Canada. Cyndi holds the National Speakers Association'sCertified Speaking Professional designation, the group's highest earneddesignation. She has owned and operated Maxey Creative Inc. since 1989. Herarticles have appeared in many professional journals and magazines, and she isco-author of two books, The Communication Coach (Coloring Outside the Lines,1998) and Training from the Heart: Developing Your Natural Abilities to Inspire theLearner and Drive Performance on the Job (ASTD Books, 2000). She has heldleadership positions in the Chicago Chapter of the American Society for Trainingand Development, Chicago Chapter of the National Association of WomenBusiness Owners, and National Speakers Association-Illinois.
A resident of Oak Park, Illinois, Jill is married to Neil, an art museum directorand professional singer and mother to Evan, an emerging teenager and futuremovie director. Jill has made numerous major moves in her career. In herprevious life as a professional actor, it happened on a daily basis. Combiningher experience on stage and in film and as a corporate spokesperson, imageconsultant, business trainer, presentation skills coach, and professional speaker,Jill has combined all of those skills and built a successful business that preparesothers to make their best moves.
Professionally, Jill has a bachelor's degree from the University of Cincinnatiand holds the Association of Image Consultants International Certified ImageProfessional designation. She founded Bremer Communications in 1986 andbegan offering consulting services to individuals seeking to improve their professionalpresence. The company expanded in 1990 to offer Image Insight(R)corporate training programs, SpeakAbilities(R) workshops, and Executive ImageCoaching. She is the author of Image Insights, a leading image eZine that hassubscribers worldwide. Jill's articles have been published in a variety of tradejournals, and she is an in-demand expert sought by business periodicals andmajor metropolitan newspapers. Jill's chapter on professional image appears inthe book Rude Awakenings: Overcoming the Civility Crisis in the Workplace(Dearborn Trade, 2002). A member of the Association of Image ConsultantsInternational, Jill currently serves on the International Board of Directors.
We know you're ready. Let's get started.
Play the Game with Us
Success in work and in life is fun and rewarding. It's a great game, but a gamethat requires a very strategic plan, and we'll show you how to follow the planstep by step. As you read, you'll notice that you've become a player in a cardgame with us. You won't have any cards to start, but with each new chapter,you'll gain insight into a different hand of cards that will lead you to success.Each hand has a lessona strong suit that you'll have to play. At the end ofeach chapter, you'll be asked to draw at least one card to get actively involvedin the game in your own life. This strategy will keep you in an active, doingmode and out of a passive, thinking mode.
After you complete each card's instructions in your own life, you'll record yourresults in your game plan at the back of the book. This is a game you'll be ableto play throughout your life because, as your goals change, your game plancould also need to change. Without revealing the whole game, here is a briefpreview of the hands you'll be dealt:
Begin Game HereIn Chapter 1 you'll get a glimpse of the big picture. You'll learn about otherslike you who are facing decisions and moves on a daily basis. You'll understandthe overall important themes of the game: wisdom, courage, strategy, andtiming.
The Preparation HandIn Chapter 2 you'll learn to step back, take stock of your life, and find yourpassion. You'll define your values as well as clarify and write your goals. You'llbe able to look inside yourself, plan in pieces, and make room for work andfamily.
The Attitude HandIn Chapter 3 you'll get a healthy dose of the positive. You'll learn how to shinethrough, say yes, give more, allow failure, find the window, take risks, be acheerleader, forget perfection, and embrace change.
The Visibility HandYou'll learn in Chapter 4 how to be visible, have energy, talk to everybody, reachout, and follow up. You'll be to maximize every networking opportunity.Begin Game Here
The Style HandIn Chapter 5 you'll enhance your know-how of style by understanding yourspecial flair and how to use it. You'll learn to choose appropriately, understandperceptions, enhance yourself, know your buyer, entertain, give gifts, and celebrateyou.
The Presentation HandChapter 6 will help you when you're asked to speak to others. You'll be inspiredto write and speak often, to be unique, think globally, know your tools,build your case, and keep current.
The Listening HandChapter 7 is an important hand that is the center of every other play. You'lllook closely at how you listen to learn, are accepting, and acknowledge mistakes.You'll also learn to listen for style, listen with your eyes, listen up, andlisten to language.
The Learning HandIn Chapter 8 you'll focus on how to learn through being aware, asking for help,developing yourself, and taking responsibility. You'll learn from other generationsand cultures.
The Balance HandChapter 9 describes the all-important balance that you can achieve throughaddressing anxieties, simplifying, managing thoughts, saying no, and making aplan for family.
The Flexibility HandChapter 10 provides the last step in keeping you flexed for the future throughsimple strategies for change management from accepting to letting go to movingforward. You'll be inspired to take action.
Shuffle the Deck and Play against Yourself
In a card game, the cards are shuffled to challenge the players. Likewise, youare encouraged to shuffle the deck to get better and better at unexpected situationsand mixed suits. By the end of the book, all fifty-two cards will havebeen on the table and you'll have played many of them. You'll have recordedthe results in your Game Plan. We'll remind you to look at the results frequentlyto help you analyze what your game is aboutand to keep playing.After all, you're playing only against yourself. You can't help but win. Play on!