Archive for July, 2015

The Game of Life

July 15, 2015

Game of LifeIn playing the game of life, consider 3 things: how much heart and happiness you’re looking for, what kind of fame you need, and how much money you want. Here are some thoughts on making the right choices for each of these themes.

How much love you need

  • Having deep relationships is hard to plan out. Generally things don’t go as planned – the hot guy/gal isn’t that great or fun to be with, the partner/friend/colleague disappoints in ways unexpected, and miscommunications complicate intentions everywhere at the most inconvenient times.
  • But stay true to your values. Keep the faith and the hope, while being wiser for each experience, good and bad. (Note that you learn more from the bad than the good.)
  • Raise the bar for the relationships you hold dear, and stop trying so hard working those relationships that cause pain without learnings.

How much money you need

  • You always need more than you think, to cover the unexpected, so aim to cover the fundamentals, plus bonus, just-in-case money.
  • Appreciate all that you have rather than envy those that have more than you. It’s not about keeping up with the Jones’.
  • You don’t need as much as you think to accomplish what you want and to build the relationships which nurture and support you.

How much fame you need

  • The goal is to be known favorably by those who matter.
  • Many people don’t know what their brand is, how they are known.
  • Others don’t planfully go out there to be known, thinking this part isn’t important.
  • Still others know their brand and get their message out there, but aren’t targeting the right people – people who would support them and help them grow.

Whether you’re reflecting on your personal or professional goals and standings, consider the heart, money, fame games you have in mind. How do you measure up and how will you change the way you play the game of life?


Linda Holroyd is a coach, adviser and consultant and CEO of FountainBlue and organizer for FountainBlue’s monthly When She Speaks series.


Leveraging Social Media for Work and Play

July 11, 2015

Leveraging Social Media for Work and Play (2)-COLLAGE

FountainBlue’s July 10 When She Speaks, Women in Leadership Series event was on the topic of Leveraging Social Media for Work and Play. Below are notes from the conversation.

We were fortunate to have such an accomplished, dynamic, creative and powerful panel of speakers, representing a wide range of backgrounds, perspectives and thoughts. They generously shared their wisdom and strategies about social media.
They started with a definition of social media. Social media facilitates ‘multi-directional’ interactions where content and ideas are created, shared and/or amplified by the users via electronic means. These technologies and tools allow people to connect and engage with a wide range of other people, be it friends, family, customers or partners or a wide range of strangers and like-minded people with shared common interests. In short, it amplifies and accelerates the content we create and the networks of people and communities we reach, in real time. Leveraged well, it can take us to the next generation of communication and impact, expanding human and professional networks and the ability to share relevant content and information and connect a wide range of people and democratizes the access to raise one’s voice.”
Whether our panelists came into social media as a part of their corporate job function, as a personal exploration of interest, as a social and networking experiment for a start-up, or as a consultant in a PR firm working with tech companies, they all saw the impact of social media strategies on the company, on the people connected with the company, and on the brand.
They each commented in different ways that we are all empowered to leverage social media technologies and strategies to clarify our brand, to find our voice, to connect with those that matter – both personally and professionally. There’s no avoiding it or running and hiding from it, below are some tips on how to do this wisely:
  • Know what you want to communicate and do it authentically, strategically and with good judgment. 
  • To strategically leverage social media, know your objective, your audience, and your measurable results before you start on any campaign.
  • Social media is not just for the extraverts. Everyone can leverage it – do what feels comfortable to you.
  • Social media is a must-have for building networks and connections, and for communicating your brand.
  • LinkedIn is a must-have for all professionals. Create your profile, find and communicate your brand and voice.
  • Even if personal and professional identities are separate, how you do one thing is how you do everything, so make sure that your communications is ‘clean’ and won’t reflect badly on yourself or your company. Assume that everything you do will be public and forever, even if you meant the message as a personal communication to a private audience.
  • When weighing what or whether to communicate, make active choices that you will stand by. Be ever respectful and non-controversial and don’t be argumentative.
  • Develop a point of view by retweeting others’ content and eventually writing your own. Be consistent with the point of view – don’t be schizophrenic going back and forth with your viewpoint.
  • Consider the immediate and feedback when you send out messages – do people like what you say? is it the right audience?
  • You know when you’re ‘too’ into social media if you’re texting or SnapChatting someone sitting next to you. Social media is not a substitute for face-to-face interactions!
  • Social media allows you to be the person you want to be perceived as.
  • Be real – warm, human, encouraging, light – while providing meaty content of interest to the audience you’re reaching.
  • Be in alignment with corporate, division, team, product and other perspectives.
  • Collaborate with others from other divisions and roles to communicate messages and achieve objectives.
The bottom line is that social media will forever change how we communicate who we are as individuals and as professionals. It’s a double-edged sword, which, when managed well, can amplify your message and your reach.

Please join us in thanking our panelists for FountainBlue’s July 10 When She Speaks, Women in Leadership Series event, the topic of Leveraging Social Media for Work and Play, and our gracious hosts at Sandisk.

Facilitator Natascha Thomson, CEO, MarketingXLerator, Co-Author,  CMO, Beonpop, Yogi
Panelist Jennifer Barr, Social Media Manager Online Brand; TEDxBerkeley, Co-Curator
Panelist Yvette Huygen, Director, Worldwide PR & Corporate Communications, Synopsys, Inc.
Panelist Linda Liu, VP Corporate Sales, Altera
Panelist Nithya Ruff, Head of Open Source Strategy Office, SanDisk, President for Women’s Innovation Network (WIN) at SanDisk
Panelist Brianna Woon, Senior Manager, Corporate Communications, Polycom