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Atlas World Group’s Mike Shaffer Honored with MSI Lifetime Achievement Award

directionsmag-logo V4Enjoying a journey that has all the elements of a classic American Dream story, Mike Shaffer has become an industry legend, building winning teams that have made Atlas World Group the successful company it is today.

Of course Shaffer doesn’t view his life as an epic story. For him, it’s about seizing opportunities, achieving success through hard work and helping both individuals and teams reach their full potential.


Doubling Down on Unemployment

Four aces playing cards and gambling chipsI marked my six-month “can-iversary” in Atlantic City gambling a portion of my last unemployment payment.

My position was eliminated on November 1, 2013 after 14 successful years with the same organization. Since my claim was delayed, I hadn’t even received my first unemployment check from the state of New Jersey when the federal extended unemployment benefits were discontinued on December 28, 2013 which meant that I would only be able to collect for six months…


Asleep on the Job, The Power of Napping

Energy PodBoston University professor William Anthony, Ph.D. and his wife Camille created National Napping Day in 1999. The unofficial holiday acknowledges that people feel sleepy after turning the clocks forward to adjust to Daylight Savings Time. Their goal was to encourage people to nap after “springing forward,” no matter where they are (home or work) and to make it a regular part of their healthy lifestyle.

Because technology gives us the ability to do basically any task 24/7, including job searching, I have found the afternoon power nap to be beneficial during this time in my life.

A little snooze during the midday slump does wonders for my positivity and productivity…


I May Not Know Jamie Dimon But I Know Enough

Jamie DimonThe trials and tribulations of career transition go from the ridiculous to the sublime and back again. Nuggets of learning and affirmation happen every step of the way.

I knew the tables were not tipped in my favor when an interviewer asked:

“Who is the Chairman of the Board and CEO at JP Morgan Chase?”

Although I read business periodicals and keep abreast of business news and, in fact, have read several recent articles about Jamie Dimon, I had to admit my mind drew a blank. I was not able, at that moment, to recall the answer to the question…


No Job, No Electricity, No Problem

StormWhen others were convinced that Hurricane Sandy would head out to sea or minimally impact the northeast, I was busy preparing for business continuity in light of the impending disaster.

Days before the superstorm hit, I instructed my staff to bring home hard copies of their work files to ensure that all our customers would be served. I ignored the eye rolling and expressions of resistance. Instead I opted to trust my instincts and act on my foresight…


Embracing the Blip

Navigating the Waves of Career Transition

Compas150The new host of “The Tonight Show” greeted his first audience on Monday with, “I’m Jimmy Fallon and I’ll be your host…for now.”

He understands that most jobs are temporary. I learned this several months ago. I celebrated my 2 month “can-iversary” on New Year’s Day 2014.

I will always remember the day my position was eliminated after 14 successful years with the same organization. Because it happened on my late father’s birthday…