The PMA Blog

Deb Cullerton

Managing Partner at PMA and passionate about developing leaders
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Recent Posts

Stop Working So Much!

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 5/8/19 6:50 AM

It's in my blood!  I grew up in a family that rewarded it.  For many years I believed it was responsible for everything good in my life.  I have always put it in my top 3 values and traits.  And, I now believe (and it kills me to say so) that I was wrong.  In fact, it may be my biggest limitation in achieving both my professional and personal goals.  While I have spent years jumping in and working more and harder when things get dicey, I realized now that this hard work ethic has, at times, caused me to:

  • Make the wrong prioritizing decisions at times when my health, my family life and my spiritual needs were on the line.
  • Become judgmental when others chose differently.
  • Measure "hours in play" instead of results.
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Topics: Productivity for All

Is the "People Stuff" Getting You Down?

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 3/19/19 7:25 AM

I was coaching a client last week and asked about his progress since he went to our WorkingSm@rt class.   He said, "Well, I'm more organized and more focused but I haven't solved the one issue that takes up more time than almost anything else -- the people stuff!”.

I knew he was saying it tongue in cheek, but he winced a little as he said it and I knew there was more truth there than he was comfortable with.  I wish I could say it was the first time I've heard this complaint, but it's not.  It's impossible to focus on people's productivity without consistently running into the challenging people issues that can take up significant chunks of our day.

 So, without ado, I thought I’d outline three people areas that waste significant time in our workplaces with a few solutions that can make a significant impact:

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Topics: Productivity for All, All About Teams, Leadership Matters

Finding TIME to Achieve Your Goals

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 1/16/19 8:59 AM

In LEAN Six Sigma, there is an acronym for 8 different forms of operational waste called DOWNTIME (defects, overproduction, waiting, not utilizing staff talent, travel, inventory, motion, excess processing). This has me thinking about my own time this month as we head into the new year with big audacious (maybe not hairy) goals.  Where will the time to make these things happen actually come from?

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Topics: Productivity for All

There is no Q5:  5 ways to take control of your 2018 results before it's too late

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 12/6/18 3:37 PM

There is no Q5!  I saw this headline on something this morning and I almost spit out my coffee.  It's obviously true but I know many people who keep waiting for that magical time.  You know the time that they finally jump on the work necessary to achieve their 2018 goals.  And the thought of this year quickly fading into the past will come as a real surprise and painful reality.  So, if this rings true, don't let the last 3 weeks slip away on you.  Here are 5 ways you can not only end 2018 on a high note, but also start 2019 with some amazing momentum:


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Topics: Productivity for All

Be an Advocate for Change

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 9/14/18 3:48 PM

It's not always easy for managers to know what their role is during changes.  Here are two big ones.

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Topics: Change Happens

5 Ways to Change Your Results Today

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 2/15/18 10:40 AM

Focus on Results, Not Tasks

In order to change results, you have to focus on the right things. Thinking about your day as a bunch of to-do's will get you nowhere fast. Instead, drive your day by the objectives. What are the results you are trying to accomplish and is there a direct correlation to the way you are spending your time? If your tasks don't roll up to a specific objective, seriously question their value.  And if they do, prioritize and work the most important one first.  


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Topics: Organizational &Talent Development, Productivity for All, Leadership Matters

The Struggle for Focus and 3 Ways to Improve It

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 8/7/17 3:36 PM

This morning I didn't follow my own rules and here's what happened:

7:00 Start pc

7:01 Dive right into email

7:03 Open email with fun blog title for website company

7:05 Peruse their website

7:07 Link to someone they like in neuroscience (a field that's like crack for me)

7:10 Read everything the neuroscientist has ever written on the web

7:40 Consider 3 new business ideas; discard all of them

7:50 Decide to go to twitter to link with the neuroscientist

8:12 Wake up from a twitter-induced fog to realize I have lost the first FREAKING HOUR of my day!!!


 How many times has this happened to you?

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Topics: Productivity for All

The 5 F's of More Successful Meetings and Team Retreats

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 7/14/17 8:14 AM

It's time for your summer team meeting and you haven't even begun to plan it.  Don't let your meeting be like the ones where the most memorable parts are the adult beverages consumed after the meeting! 

The 5 F's will make your summer team meeting a phenomenal success with almost no time to plan:

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Topics: All About Teams, Leadership Matters, HR Executives

Double Down or Fold?

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 3/16/16 10:40 AM

So the 1st quarter is almost over and your motivation for the new year’s resolutions and healthy changes is wearing a little thin.  The stresses of winter and normalcy have crept back into your life.  Ok well that’s what’s happening to me anyway and I’m hoping I’m not the only one.

The vast majority of resolutions have gone by the wayside for everyone else, but not for us my friends!  It’s time to double down with a few strategies to re-energize and re-motivate:

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Topics: Productivity for All

Bite the Lemon and Boost your Productivity Daily (Our most popular post of 2015)

Posted by Deb Cullerton on 2/19/16 11:40 AM


Enjoy our most popular post of 2015!
We heard from so many people last year on this one that we just had to do a re-post.  If you missed it last year, enjoy.  If you read it, give it a quick scan and make sure you're still biting the lemon. -Deb
Bite the lemon
What if you walked into your office every morning and there was a lemon sitting on your desk? And what if, every day, you knew that you would have to take a bite out of that lemon before you left for the day? Like most people, you would probably spend the entire day pushing the lemon aside, finding one reason after another not to bite that lemon.
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Topics: Productivity for All, Leadership Matters

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