Alaant Influencers:
Donal Conn, Founding Principal, Donal Conn Associates

Alaant Influencer Donal Conn
+ About Alaant Influencers

Alaant Influencers feature regional influencers and local luminaries sharing their career advice and secrets to success—in their own words. These influencers are the people making a powerful impact for good across the community.

His backstory:

With nearly 25 years of experience, Donal is considered an industry leader in the design and delivery of talent management programs developing dynamic leadership teams, implementing organizational advancement strategies and executing employer branding programs that transcend borders, languages and cultures for dozens of the world’s largest corporations.

As a recognized thought leader, he regularly authors articles for trade magazines and frequently serves as a keynote speaker at industry conferences around the world. He can also be heard sharing his POV on multiple radio talk shows and podcasts on iTunes, iHeartRadio and NPR. While traveling for clients around the world, he moonlights as a freelance travel and nature photographer for multiple prestigious publications, including National Geographic and Smithsonian Magazine.

Donal leads his development consultancy and human resources think tank based in Saratoga Springs with associates located in 16 different countries – most of whom are former C-level executives from Fortune 1000 organizations – with a mission to help their clients improve business operations and grow through an array of talent management, training, communication and post-merger and acquisition integration services.

 

What qualities do you think are needed to be successful in today's workplace?

Before all-things internet, your ability to retain and apply knowledge was probably a person’s single-most competitive advantage in the workplace. If you were well-versed on topics or in subject areas others weren’t, you could readily leverage that knowledge in your career to get ahead. But today, information is a ridiculously abundant commodity. Anybody can Google or YouTube anything and in just a matter of seconds obtain and share detailed information on most any topic.

In a time where everybody can be an instant expert, I believe the real differentiator is your interpersonal skills. Those who exhibit a well-developed social intelligence and have the ability to authentically connect with others quickly–and sustain that rapport over time–seem to have the greatest competitive advantage in the workplace. Are you able to get people to genuinely like and trust you? Are you empathetic? Do others feel like you’re truly listening to them? Can you communicate in-depth and articulate information clearly when you’re not limited to 240 characters or less? Perhaps, ironically, in today’s information age where social media often replaces social interactions, those who have the ability to make real connections with their coworkers when the devices are powered off are the ones getting more job offers, being selected for promotions and winning new clients.


 

Follow Donal Conn on LinkedIn.

About the Author

Miriam Dushane

Miriam Dushane, Managing Partner, Alaant Workforce Solutions

Miriam is all in when it comes to doing whatever she can to help the area grow and thrive. She is passionate about the work she does helping talented professionals find the right job opportunity and her work in the community is focused on furthering this area as a center for economic growth and vitality. Miriam likes to garden and take care of her pets and animals. She is a member of an adult only skate group where she roller blades every week. She loves the Mets! And she is completely obsessed with vacuum cleaners; she really likes to vacuum and has 6 right now.

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