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Action, Interaction and Reaction from the Ritz team

Hitting the reset button

Posted: May 30, 2013 - 10:30 PM ET - by Elisabeth

AIRtime will be on hiatus while we reprioritize and revamp. You might say we’re getting some R&R! We’ll still be tweeting and chirping (or at least posting ideas, updates and information on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter); please follow us there.


You first …

Posted: January 24, 2013 - 10:15 PM ET - by Elisabeth

What does it mean to make a good first impression in a day and age when” following” and “friending” have replaced a handshake. Eye contact and appearance just don’t have the same impact on line, teleconferences notwithstanding.

As you make an increasing number of introductions online, are you considering the impact of your electronic correspondence, your social media profiles and even your phone manners?

  • When you send an email, does your subject line demonstrate your ability to the point succinctly and accurately?
  • Does your grammar and spelling indicate that you pay attention to detail or care enough about what you are sending to hit “Spelling & Grammar”?
  • Do you really need to let the person you are meeting/corresponding with know whether you’re : ) or : ( ? Some people think emoticons are fun and funny; others think they’re childish.
  • Do you take advantage of the brief bio space on social media forums like Linked In, Twitter and even facebook?
  • Do your social media platforms have a clear photo of you?
  • Are your contact details easily accessible?
  • Is your entire life on display on social media? Do you really want it to be? Are your social media posts something your boss or mother-in-law will enjoy as much as your buddies? Are you “humble bragging” or sharing?
  • Are your posts all about you? Do you interact with other people? Reply? Share? Retweet? Even with those who disagree or criticize? A little grace and consideration go a long way in making a good first – or lasting – impression.
  • If someone calls you, do they get a brief, but friendly, outgoing message? If they don’t, have you considered how your humor or rambling details might impress – or not – people who don’t know you?
  • If you get a machine, do you cut to the chase about why you’re calling and leave your contact details slowly and clearly?
  • If you reach someone live, do you stop to ask if you’ve reached him or her at a convenient time to speak before launching into your reason for calling?
  • If someone reaches you live, are you paying attention? If you can tell when other people are reading their emails, eating, etc., they can tell when you’re typing or chewing too.


Posted: January 10, 2013 - 2:00 PM ET - by Elisabeth

My team demonstrates their commitment all year long, and they’re establishing and exceeding goals for our clients on a regular basis. (I don’t mean to brag, but I have immense respect for what they get done.) As we kick off 2013, I thought it would be fun to hear from some of the team what they’re resolving to do personally and professionally. It turns out, for many of us, our commitment is really a day-to-day effort, and as for formal resolutions, we are … unresolved.

Mike Beyer

“My resolution is to be much more organized in my work and do a better job of reading newspapers/ following media influencers. I also resolve to get a better handle on social media for 2013.”

Patty Keiler

“My first-graders recently began reading ‘chapter books” and watching them get lost in a book (most recently Ramona the Pest!) has been a beautiful reminder of how much fun – and how therapeutic – it can and should be! I’m almost through with Gone Girl and love it (shhh if you know the ending).” 

Kiera Kelly

“Go to bed earlier. Be more organized. Ensure I am ‘present’ as much as possible with my kids instead of worrying so much about the tasks at hand.”

Jennifer Newman

“My approach is more to try to make adjustments and improve myself all year long!”

Phil Sheldon

“… in general, I am not a supporter/believer in the process of setting New Year’s Resolutions. I tend to make new resolutions regularly throughout the year when I need to tweak my behavior, resolve, direction, etc., but this year I did make a couple timed with the holiday. First, I resolved to breathe a bit more and take time to THINK – let the creative juices flow more regularly in work and at play which we DO NOT do often enough.  Second, I resolved to try to make a difference a bit more often, whether it is in work, with family or in the grander scale of things – deliver a bit of impact now and then.”

Molly Watson

“No resolutions. I am a work in progress.”

Heather Wiederhorn

“I resolve to try and stick to a mantra that has been in our family for years: “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” It doesn’t necessarily mean that changes are in order – even though they likely are – but focuses on the here, now and tomorrow all wrapped up in one. I like to think of that saying when sweating the small stuff – which I hope happens less often this year.”

… and as for me

I’m no different, I follow Anaïs Nin’s example: “I made no resolutions for the New Year. The habit of making plans, of criticizing, sanctioning and molding my life, is too much of a daily event for me. ”

Wishing my team, and all of our readers, the resolve to achieve whatever you are hoping for this year!


Hold the phone!

Posted: December 13, 2012 - 6:00 PM ET - by Elisabeth

Are you tied to your smartphone 24/7?

Maybe you’ve used it to look up some statistics about our obsessive-compulsive relationship with our phones …40% of Americans have checked their phone while on the toilet … 30% of our British friends would rather give up sex than go a week without their phones … 50% of Americans sleep with their phone next to them … 66% percent of us suffer from “nomophobia” – a fear of being without our mobile phone.

Maybe you’ve even read the research that says our brains aren’t really wired to be constantly engaged and technology is changing our personalities. We multitask ineffectively … post narcissistically … withdraw from face-to-face interaction … act and react more rudely based on a perception of anonymity.

Have you asked yourself what’s so important? Why it’s so urgent? How it’s impacting your priorities (your work and the time with family and friends, not to mention going to the bathroom and sex)?

Have you asked yourself whether you manage your technology or it manages you!


EveryBODY’s impression

Posted: October 4, 2012 - 1:50 PM ET - by Elisabeth

Last night’s presidential debate generated a lot of conversation – between the candidates and among the rest of the country. Win or lose, impressed or appalled, we hung on facial expressions and postures as much as facts and figures.

You may not have to interview for your next job or client by debating your biggest competitor on a national stage, but you probably know the significance of confident eye contact, a firm handshake, a warm smile and self-possessed posture in making a positive first, second or lasting impression on any audience.

Do you know the impact it has on you?

In this TEDtalk, social psychologist Amy Cuddy talks about how body language shapes not only how you are perceived, but who you are.


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