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Welcome to Merge's Monthly Mega Minute – a bite-sized, yet substantial and practical, nugget of information that you can use immediately to enhance your professional and personal success.

Anger is an expression of helplessness

Let's face it, if you're in a position of leadership, there are times when your staff (or your peers, or your boss) will do or say stupid things that will drive you nuts, enough that their actions may cause you to get angry enough to explode. Don't. Your expression of anger says more about you than it does about them. When you get visibly angry, what you're really saying, whether you mean to or not, is "I feel like I have lost control, so I have lost control." What you're really doing is saying that you feel helpless. Which often is the exact message that you don't want to communicate.

Instead, improve your success as a leader by learning how to manage your anger. Here's an approach that I've used for many years. First, buy yourself some time by counting to ten in your mind, or by doing mental math.

Then, consciously and deliberately ask yourself some questions:

  • How important is my relationship with this person?
  • Is this situation similar to an experience from my past?
  • What is at risk in this situation?

The answers to these questions will help you formulate how best to address the frustrating circumstances.

Now having said this, I am well aware that this is sometimes easier said than done. It takes presence of mind to fall back to thoughtful anger management in the heat of the moment. But I can tell you (from personal experience) that the more I try to remember this, the better I get at controlling my anger. I am an ongoing work in progress ☺!

So ... I'm curious to hear your perspectives. What approach do you take to managing anger? Something similar to mine? Or do you think it's just better to just let it all out in an angry outburst. Please share your experiences online at my blog:


Merge is the newest columnist at

Super-exciting news! Merge is now a regular columnist for, the online version of Profit Magazine, a Canadian business magazine aimed at entrepreneurs, focusing on how to find opportunity and seize it, management practices, case studies and access to peer groups. Here inaugural column is titled How to become a persuasive triple-threat and explores what it takes to get more people to buy your ideas.

P.S. For those readers who may not know, Profit Magazine is published by Rogers Media, the same publishing house that puts out Canadian Business, MoneySense and Macleans, so we are very pumped that Merge is now in such distinguished company!

Merge is presenting at Vitalize 2015!

On June 18-20, over 1,000 front-line Alberta volunteers; volunteer managers; fundraisers; staff, board and committee members from a variety of not-for-profit organizations will gather in Edmonton, Alberta to learn from the best AND to celebrate the unique and valuable service they provide to those in society who need it the most. Merge is excited to once again be part of Alberta's much-admired Vitalize Provincial Volunteer Sector conference after a five-year hiatus, presenting two fast-paced 90-minute workshops on Friday June 19. If you live in Alberta and you are (or work with) a volunteer(s) in ANY capacity, then you really do need to attend this top-notch affair. This premier event is funded by Alberta Culture and Tourism so the registration fee is a bargain at $195 for the ENTIRE three days! Here's a link to the conference's website: Vitalize 2015.

The Remote Leadership Institute reprints one of Merge's articles

Get the link for Managing Virtual Teams: Four Ways to Overcome the Challenges of Long-distance Leadership via Merge's blog.


Turning Managers into Leaders

That Merge is one of only 232 women in the world to have earned the Certified Speaking Professional credential?

Merge is a proud professional member of both the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers and the Global Speakers Federation, and holds her Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) designation. The CSP designation is an international measure of speaking and platform excellence and is awarded only to those accomplished speakers who meet strict criteria and have a proven record of delivering client satisfaction. A CSP brings a demonstrated track record of continuing speaker experience, expertise and excellence, and is committed to ongoing education, outstanding service and ethical behavior. Less than 12% of the speakers who belong to the worldwide federation hold this professional designation, and Merge is one of only 232 women in the world who have earned the Certified Speaking Professional credential. You can obtain more information about the CSP designation here.


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