Category Archives: empire illinois

Monday Quote of the Day:

Being prepared for Monday morning is crucial to having a strong week!


10 Not So Obvious Barriers to Effective Leadership

Leadership is not an accomplishment you check off your daily to-dos. At the heart of leadership is the omnipresent, bold belief that influence, relationships, dialogue and faith in people call forward our best leadership abilities. Leadership is inspiring others to give their best effort despite what they believe to get things done.

Yet, there are many well-intended (and some not so) people who hit barriers to their leadership abilities. At the risk of being yet another voice in the echo chamber, I want to share ten less obvious barriers to effective leadership. On the surface they seem obvious. Truth is, however, many of us are unwilling to look at these barriers. Going a step further, many of us are unwilling to admit some of these hold us back.

Your own leadership becomes great when you tend to your own internal well-being. That’s where things get tricky. Depending on where your attention lies when improving your internal well-being, you either entrench the barriers or move them aside.

Read the following ten barriers to get a sense of where your intentions must lie to amplify your leadership.

Need to be liked

Effective leaders understand unpopular views are necessary. The need to be liked interferes with the ability to see two steps ahead from where the team is and effectively navigate the team to the next level of performance and success.

Inability to decide

Admittedly this one is obvious. But a leader who can gather input or know when to unilaterally make a decision can gain trust, respect and signal confidence to followers. Poor decisions or no decisions causes anxiety, frustration, anger, and weakens confidence in the leader.

Unable to manage workload

Do more with less is an overused mantra in most organizations today. Effective leaders pay attention to the demands on their people and make changes when the workload is causing unmanageable stress, weakens quality, and becomes an expense to people and the organization.

Unclear on personal values

Values are the anchor that help us weather the drama, disappointments and temptations in the workplace. To not know your values leaves you susceptible to inconsistencies that baffle and anger you and your team.

No clear team purpose

Purpose is the why for the team’s existence. If the team’s purpose is not clear and only plucked from everyone’s intuition, then anyone can sway the team unproductively. That’s a problem.

Don’t network

Business has always been built on the back of relationships. It’s a weak excuse to blame workload and endless meetings for the reason you don’t network with other managers or divisions. Know what’s going on around you so you can prepare your team or position your team for success.

Don’t take a stand

Malcom X said, “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” If you don’t know what you stand for you and your team will never reach its full potential. Unnecessary hardships are wasted.

Don’t consider what’s at stake

Decisions to act or not act must be made when considering what actions to take. Without knowledge of what’s at stake, you appear erratic, too spontaneous, careless. What’s at stake for your team, the organization, the customer, for you? These are good places to look.

Don’t demand best from your people

Who has time for one-on-ones or give feedback? Effective leaders do. In today’s “do more with less” work environments, effective leaders help their people grow in their jobs. This only happens with care and intention to build up great people and teams.

It’s about you

Leadership is not about you. It’s about others. Ineffective managers fail to lead when they place their needs above what’s needed for the team, the organization, an individual. This is hard to swallow.

Empire Launches New Website and Expands Social Network

Empire, Inc. works with a diverse portfolio of Fortune 500 Clients. As a promotional marketing consulting firm, Empire is hired to work with client account holders to acquire and retain business.

Lombard, IL, March 15, 2013 –(– Empire, a Chicago-based sales and marketing firm, has launched a new website. The company is growing and with the upcoming expansions, Empire needed to give their audience insight to news and events as the company evolves. In addition to the new website, Empire is now providing the public with up to date information about the company through blogs and social media.

Empire, Inc. works with a diverse portfolio of Fortune 500 Clients. As a promotional marketing consulting firm, Empire is hired to work with client account holders to acquire and retain business. Through marketing, sales management and campaign support, Empire currently helps clients increase their Chicago area market share, with plans to expand nationally in the upcoming months.

Empire’s main client is a retail division of the leading wholesale energy marketer and energy service provider. They focus on the physical natural gas, electricity, coal and crude markets operating across North America. The client provides competitive electricity and gas supply to retail residential, commercial, and industrial customers. The client offers several plans to fit each customer’s needs. At Empire, representatives work closely with client account holders to the best solution to their business and consumer needs.

The new ten page website includes information for customers, new and potential clients as well as current and future employees. On the home page, users can view Empire’s Mission Statement, access links to what the company is about as well as view direct feed to the Empire’s up to date Facebook stream.

Under About the Company, viewers get access to Careers, Clients and Services as well as live access to Empire’s blog. On the Careers page, one can find information about open positions, employee benefits, as well as employee culture.

On the Team page, the website displays the management staff at Empire complete with pictures and bios. The Our Culture section of the website gives a photo gallery of the staff at various company functions.

Empire also prides itself on giving back to the community. As explained by Mark Chern, President of Empire, “I wanted to make sure we were providing an environment where people would be satisfied with their career and know they were making a difference in the community as well. I am proud of how our team has stepped up in that area and I am excited to continue the philanthropic efforts as we grow.” The charities Empire has worked, found on the Community Involvement page, include Operation Smile, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Feed The Hungry Foundation, and St. Baldricks Foundation.

At the top of each page, one can find access to several social media sites to keep up with the latest about Empire. Empire uses these sites to give employee recognitions, to inform of company events as well as provide its employees with educational articles about business and leadership.

Empire expects to expand to multiple locations this year, according to Chern. Through the website and social media, Empire will be keeping the public informed as they grow.

Good leadership is vital to business success – From

In research released by the National Business Awards, UK employees and bosses were found to view strong leadership as the most important influence on business success.
90 percent of individuals surveyed said that the most important influence on the success of an organisation was good leadership.

Over 80% of employees agree that having a good leader will have an impact on their own career progression, and they also believe that having a good boss inspires greater loyalty and motivation in them.

The research also revealed that bosses views of their leadership qualities varied from that of employees, with 86 percent of bosses thinking they display good leadership, compared to only a third of workers viewing their leader as being good.

National Business Awards Chair of Judges, Dame Helen Alexander, said: “Leadership is important for every business. Good leadership can inspire a team and therefore the whole organisation.”

“The research shows the importance of strong leadership to employees, with leaders themselves also appreciating how vital it is to success. It’s interesting to see that individual employees are motivated by their own success, but bosses see that success as a way of gaining for the whole business.”

The full white paper can be found at

Check Out The Team At Empire

Fun Times With Empire

Members of Empire had a great time last week bowling at Lucky Strike in Lombard IL. playing ppol and watching the Bulls and Hawks games.


Outstanding Performance!

Empire wants to recognize our outstanding team members:

Great job Elizabeth for being nationally ranked as the #1 rep in the country for outstanding performance with our client.  
Another congratulations to Margaret for receiving recognition as the week’s most outstanding performer in the country. 
Keep up the great work!

‘The Partnership’ Leader: Diversity Is Crucial To Business Success

By Ken Tucci, WBZ-TV Producer


3BD6F4BOSTON (CBS) – Workplace diversity is often seen as an issue of fairness, but during this Black History Month, WBZ-TV talked to one Boston community and business leader who argues that diversity is crucial to business success in this global economy.

Carol Fulp leads The Partnership, an organization dedicated to developing professionals of color and nurturing future leaders.

“From a business perspective, you need individuals in your organization who look like your entire market in order to market to them,” said Fulp.

Fulp just crystallized the goal of The Partnership.

“We want to make sure that professionals of color have the leadership development they need to succeed,” she said.

For 25 years, The Partnership has done that with programs that attract, train and retain some of the best and brightest. First Lady Diane Patrick is an early graduate, and so is the state’s new interim Senator.

“We’re most proud that Mo Cowan is of the class of 1996,” said Fulp.

Fulp herself was on the short list for the interim senate job because her resume is long and deep.

President Obama even named her a special representative to the United Nations at the beginning of his first term.

She is a nationally recognized business and civic leader and a woman with a profound mission.

“I’m a child of the Civil Rights movement. Were it not for the Civil Rights movement, I would not be here today. And it really is my responsibility to open the doors for others,” she said.

Rahim Rajpar, who works at John Hancock Financial Services, has been in a partnership program called the Next Generation Executive for about 6 months.

“At the heart of it, it is all about training people how to be better executives,” he said. “My favorite thing about Carol is, when you talk to her, she gives you 120 percent. You feel like her whole world is you in that moment, and that’s a very special quality.”

“This is a global market and in order for us to truly be innovative we have to have different opinions, different people at the table,” said Fulp.

And she takes with her an inspiring perspective.

“Rosa sat so that Martin could march and Martin marched so that Barack could run. And Barack ran so that all… all of our children could fly. And that’s America,” she said.

The Partnership works with people who are at the entry level, mid-career and executive level. Over the past 25 years nearly 3000 people have participated in the leadership development programs.

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