Business & Life Lessons Learned

Until her recent move to North Carolina, Kelly Johnson was a reporter and social media strategist for the Sacramento Business Journal. In these these blogs she shares lessons learned about business, leadership, entrepreneurship, innovation, mentoring, overcoming challenges, and reinventing one’s life.

Using a sabbatical to rediscover a bargain

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During the last decade and a half of crazy-long work days, I missed out on much — time with family and friends, time for relaxation and hobbies, time for introspection. Until my current sabbatical, it had not occurred to me that I had neglected yet another joy — a free public service and one of the greatest institutions of a civilized society.

Learning about career and personal life goals from Texan pride

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All this pride in Texas got me thinking. How much is too much pride or blind faith in one’s community, one’s own professional pursuits, or a relationship? When should we hold on, believing that there’s nothing better out there? And when do we give up on our dream of what’s possible?

An immigrant succeeds through his support of the military

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When my friend described Jackson Huang and his restaurant, I thought she was aggrandizing for storytelling effect. Upon meeting Jackson, as everyone calls him, I realized that the Killeen, Texas, icon lives up to his over-the-top reputation.

The journey to a new life is fraught with bumps

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The journey to a new life is not straight, especially emotionally. On Day 5 of my cross-country trip to my new life and career in North Carolina, I felt exhilarated to the degree of "pinch me, I'm dreaming."

Bad drivers, horrendous singing & an 80th birthday

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On this, only my second day of my cross-country journey to a new life in North Carolina, I already have learned a few things — about bad drivers and my own singing that stings my ears — and I reaffirmed my decision to quit my job for this self-funded sabbatical.

How to attract news coverage of your event announcement

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Your client or your company seeks news coverage for the business anniversary, ground breaking ceremony, a celebration of a finished renovation, or for the kickoff of a new program. What would turn that event invitation into news? Here are public relations tips for attracting media attention before that event even happens.

Exotic foreign travel or summer family vacation stateside?

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Most of us at some point feel the lure of foreign travel. But I was reminded last week while sharing with lifelong friends an oceanfront beach house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks of the value of another kind of vacation — simple times with friends and family, playing cards, swimming in the ocean, enjoying good wine and food, laughing over childhood memories, and relaxing in front of a beach bonfire as the sound of the crashing waves makes all seem right in the world.

Learn from social media by getting personal in business

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When you meet a prospective client or vendor for the first time in person, do you jump right into talking business? Just like we all know that we’re supposed to show our personality on our social media platforms, let some of your personal self shine through in person when meeting with potential and new clients and vendors.

5 public relations tips for getting news media coverage

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As the demand intensifies to feed the hungry online beast, reporters have to work much faster and smarter. The companies and public relations professionals who adapt to the changing media landscape by offering more to journalists are more likely to earn news coverage. As a working journalist, I offer some tips for how companies and PR professionals can improve their news pitch.

At long last, learning to appreciate wine

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A month ago, at age 46, I uncorked my first bottle of wine. As an adult, I had always stuck to beer. As my 30s eased into my 40s, my beverage of choice became a point of consternation with some of my girlfriends. Thanks to the tutelage of patient friends, I'm happy to report that I have developed a friendship with wine and more recently, also with mead.
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