When Work and Family Life Collide

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Previously published on Forbes

The blur between work and family has never been, well … more blurry. Family members are all up in your business. They walk in the room while you are in the midst of an important conversation with your boss, your coach, or the media, as we witnessed in the BBC interview with Professor Robert Kelly. The embarrassing footage went viral. What we didn’t know was that it was a portender of what we would all face sooner than we really wanted to.

Many of us have been tortured trying to appear professional with our toddlers doing what they do best…


If you are worn out after a day in front of your computer screen, you are not alone.

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Previously published on Forbes

Are you worn out after a day in front of your computer screen? You aren’t alone.

Thanks to the global pandemic, we have done all of our coaching, training and facilitation via Zoom or Microsoft Teams for these past ten months. Don’t get me wrong. I’m super grateful for how user-friendly these robust platforms are as millions of workers, leaders, students, teachers and far-flung families have suddenly had to rely on them. We’re power users now.

And it’s exhausting.

On Mother’s Day, my two adult children dreamed up a virtual family get-together where we would all log onto Zoom and…


Fewer than 18% of leaders have the qualities of mind to optimally lead in volatile, uncertain, complex environments.

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Previously published in Forbes

What can you count on coming your way in 2021? More ambiguity, uncertainty and change!

As a leader, your challenge is to increase your capacity in the face of it all, because traditional approaches to leadership development aren’t keeping pace with the kinds of complexity we now face.

Currently, fewer than 18% of leaders have the qualities of mind to optimally lead in volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA) environments (Hall & Rowland, 2016). Fortunately, many bright people have been working on this very agenda over the past decade or so. What are they cooking up for us for 2021?


Employers cut a staggering 140,000 jobs in December — and all job losses happened to women.

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Previously published on Forbes

American women are the losers in the pandemic: losing their jobs, their confidence, and their financial security. According to data released from the Bureau of Labor Statistics recently, employers cut 140,000 jobs in December — a staggering number that was much worse than predicted.

But that’s only part of the story. A deeper dive into the data exposes a shocking gender gap: All of the job losses happened to women.

The news for women of color is worse.

As Annalyn Kurtz notes at CNN Business, “Black and Latina women disproportionately work in some of the hardest-hit sectors in the pandemic…


I think of the divides to heal in my own family and what conversations I could start to make things better.

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Valerie Kaur, a leader, civil rights activist, lawyer and award-winning filmmaker, released a brief and inspiring video following the attack on the U.S. Capitol. In it, she speaks of the outrage that so many of us felt as we watched the assault on one of our most treasured national spaces by white supremacists, conspiracy theorists and thugs. Violent insurgents egged on by the President himself. Mostly white males, who weren’t being sprayed back with a wave of bullets the way Black men would have been.

Kaur called what we were experiencing “Divine Rage.”

In a nation where rage is considered…


This is a great use of some of our most talented organizations.

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As a native of Seattle, I couldn’t be more proud. In a recent article, Andy Rose and Christina Maxouris write, “Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee announced a series of new efforts to help boost the state’s Covid-19 vaccinations, including partnerships with companies like Starbucks and Microsoft.”

This is a great use of some of our most talented organizations. They have the privilege of giving back to the very communities they live and work in. “This is an opportunity to serve others and have impact on a significant humanitarian effort,” said Kevin Johnson, Starbucks president and CEO.

It’s good to do…


Most of us don’t change unless we have to.

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Previously published on Forbes

We have been in need of a whole new approach to work for decades, but it wasn’t until the global pandemic hit that organizations were forced to change.

Because the truth is, none of us were really happy with the way things were — long commutes, loads of travel, office politics, 50- to 60-hour work weeks, untold distractions at the office.

It wasn’t working. But who would have ever conceived of a hard restart for the entire planet?

I didn’t always understand that change was such a difficult proposition. I remember debating with one of my professors in graduate school…


Women in every kind of work are being adversely impacted by the pandemic.

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Previously published on Forbes

Now that we are over nine months into the global pandemic, it’s time to take stock and get more creative. It’s time to pay attention to the women leaders you work with, because they have been singularly derailed with small people clamoring for their attention as they have tried to balance working from home and life at home.

For most working mothers, it’s an untenable situation, and we’re already seeing the fallout.

“The year 2020, marking the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action, was intended to be ground-breaking for gender equality,” a UN Policy brief about the impact…


If you’re wondering about hiring a coach, here are five good reasons not to.

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Previously published on Forbes

Not everyone is cut out for a coach. I thought about that the other day when someone asked me about my least favorite kind of coaching client. Over the course of my 30 + years as an executive coach, I’ve picked up on a few tell-tale signs of a bad coaching client. If you’re wondering whether or not a coach is right for you, here are my top five reasons not to hire a coach:

1. Someone Told You To

We’ll start with my number one rule: I don’t work with hostages. This means I don’t agree to coach someone who has been sent to…


It’s a big darn deal to become one of “The 20 Happiest Companies” from Glassdoor.

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Previously published on Forbes

It’s a big darn deal to become one of “The 20 Happiest Companies” from Glassdoor. You have to be doing something really, really right. But not only did ROI Healthcare Solutions make that list, they also won “ Best in KLAS “- a recognition given to vendors for outstanding efforts to help healthcare professionals deliver better patient care — two years in a row. KLAS ranked them #1 in loyalty, operations, relationship, value and service.

Clearly, ROI Healthcare Solutions is making a significant operational and clinical impact on healthcare organizations, and I wanted to find out more about them. …

Dede Henley

Founder of Henley Leadership Group. Developing leaders who create happy, productive workplaces. Thought Leader | Executive Coach | Forbes Contributor | Speaker

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