How to Discuss Managerial Experience for Promotion Interviews


By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Q. How do I get delegation experience to prove that I have management potential?

A. Do you need to be a boss to become a boss? Not really. Popularized behavioral interviewing techniques have created the opportunity for you to reflect on specific experiences rather to answer questions. You need leadership moments, not formal positional leadership authority, to demonstrate your ability to influence people towards a goal.  Start by understanding what matters to the people you need to take action. 

Techniques for developing delegation or leadership:

  • Create growth opportunities for others inside of your work. You might encounter someone in another group who is interested in your work. Give them a task that supports your work. 
  • Provide feedback to them and highlight their work to your stakeholders.
  • Delegate outside of your current job. For example, hire a housekeeper or a personal assistant. Bonus: in this way, you are using your...
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How Ditching ONE Word Can Improve All of Your Relationships

language psychology Apr 23, 2019

By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Q. How can I get people to recognize my ideas? Sometimes I feel they are ignored and overlooked.

A. Your ideas are worth hearing. That said, people are programmed to listen based on language, so consider how you might change your language in order to be received differently. An important word to understand is the word "but." While we use it as an introduction to a thought, or a conjunction, the subconscious mental interpretation is "forget what was just said." Consider how this impacts your communications. 

If you remove the word "but" from your vernacular, you can appear less resistant, less combative, more inclusive, and more considerate. People will perceive you as a better team member. 

Removing the word "but" from your self-talk can also improve your mindset and build your confidence. 

An adequate substitute for the word "but" is almost always the word "and."

Listen for the word "but" early in the discussions of...

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How (and Why) to Increase Your Visibility

brand visibilty Apr 16, 2019

By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Q: I want to be more visible in my role. Do you have any tips?

A. Yes. Good for you for noticing this. Visibility is important when it comes to promoting your projects, being known when it comes time for performance reviews. You don't  want to be invisible. You need to be seen and known and watched and followed.  Are you pushing material and information to your audience in a way that they want it? How are they consuming it? Are you helping them? Are you educating them? Are you helping them to be excited about what you're working on and how your tools could impact their project, portfolio, or performance? 

Consider who, besides your direct customer, might be interested in your work. What followers could you gather? Consider new colleagues, supervisors, other verticals or departments in your company, professionals in your industry, or even the general public. Who else can you provide information to? 

What methods and...

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Why Perfectionism is a Form of Oppression - Stay With Me Here

perfectionism shame Apr 09, 2019

By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Q. Is perfectionism oppression?

A. First, let's talk about perfection. Perfect doesn't really exist. It's an impossible bar to reach. Work that you completed in the past, will - in hindsight - be Swiss cheese.  You'll see all the holes. 

Be gentle with yourself when you see prior work that isn't up to the standard that you have for yourself today. 

Researcher Brené Brown says perfectionism protects us from being judged. It helps us avoid criticism and blame. And it's rooted in shame. Shame is the idea that we are bad people (as opposed to guilt, which is that we did a bad thing).  When you really think about it, this makes sense. Startling, mind-blowing life-altering sense. 

Somewhere far in our past, we were made to feel that we were bad people because our work product wasn't good enough. Result? We believe that perfection is the only way to avoid the shame sensation. Fear of feeling that sensation again...

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Your Career Path: Deciding Whether to Generalize or Specialize


By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Q: Should I generalize or specialize inside of my career? 

A: This is a common question we face during our career. Start by creating some criteria by which you can decide that. Two examples are Purpose and Return on Investment. 

A survey of mid-career corporate women has reveal that we move to new roles for a set of general reasons: we want to round out our resume, or we are bored in our current role, or we are wanting to join a team with inspiring leaders. What is the purpose of your pivot?

Compare the moves in terms of their return on the investment of your income, pay grade promotions, your time taken for skills development. Consider your industry, your skill set, and what your mentors are advising. 

In fact, shifting to a lesser demanding role in order to retool your skill set is completely acceptable. If you need to move around rather than up, that's okay. And if you want to reduce your chances of being laid off, have a...

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How to Pinpoint Your Career Progress

career planning Mar 19, 2019

By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

This week's question is, "Do you have any tips about working through the Career Zones worksheet?"

The worksheet discussed in the article How to Evaluate Your Career at 30,000 Feet (Plus Free Career Zones Worksheet) goes over the three aspects of your career Skill set, your Mindset, and your Guide-set.


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How to Evaluate Your Career at 30,000 Feet (Plus FREE Worksheet!)

Uncategorized Mar 14, 2019

By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Click here to download the Career Zones Worksheet

Are you deep in the weeds of executing your current role?

Are you refining your craft, meeting your deliverables, competing for exciting projects and promotions?

If so, you might be skipping over a priceless investment in strategic career planning. When was the last time you stepped back and looked at the big picture of your career? How intentional were you? Are you ready for a fresh new swipe at that?

High-performing professionals like you (yes, you!) understand and invest in each of the three Career Zones: skillset, mindset, and guide-set. 


Skillset includes the skills you have obtained, certified, performed, and have been recognized for. Earning an academic credential, certification, or licensure shows that you have the dedication to complete a challenge and set goals, that you have ambition, and finally expertise in the field. On the job, your skillset is enhanced by...

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Should You Consider a Project Management Certification

pmp project management Mar 12, 2019

By Sunday Tollefson, MBA, PMP® 

Download the FREE MBA vs PMP Decision Guide here

This week's question:

00:45 Today Laura asks, "Do you think a PMP (Project Management Professional Certification) is achievable and worth pursuing if you don't have nor plan to obtain a masters degree?" 

Yes, it's achieve and worth pursuing. Compared to an MBA, the PMP is cheaper, faster, and understanding the principles can even make you a better interviewee. According to the women I interviewed in multiple roles and industries, it's all valuable in all kinds of professional environments. 

To learn more about earning your PMP credential, visit

To learn more about earning your MBA degree, visit

Download the FREE MBA vs PMP Decision Guide here

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