Monday, 27 February 2012
Focus on the Right Goal
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Career focus on a mission and goals will generally yield results.  The more engaged you become with the business purpose the greater your store of knowledge – you begin to become a respected expert in your specialty.  Building credibility and earning respect will lead to ever increasing business success.

Stay glued to the basic business objectives in your quest for accomplishment.  If you get sidetracked with gossip and politics, it can only lead you off track. Stay focused, committed and passionate on the core business purposes.

When I hear people say their primary career goal in is to get rich my reaction is that is simply not a business objective, unless your career is robbing banks.  Accumulating wealth, status and respect comes about as a result of business accomplishment, so stay passionate and focused on the basic business objectives.

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Posted on 02/27/2012 12:53 PM by Joe Scarlett
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Thursday, 23 February 2012
Leadership and Persistence
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Roger Babson said “It is wise to keep in mind that neither success nor failure is ever final.”  This quote reminds me of a talk I once heard from someone who was sharing some wisdom from The East.  She was talking about the fact that no matter how well or how badly things are going, “this too shall pass.”  If we are bemoaning the fact that something is going badly, eventually it will turn around and get better.  We may have to reach rock bottom to begin the upward trend, but it will happen.  Likewise, when things are going great and it seems that we will be on top indefinitely, we need to remember that things can change quickly.  Leaders have to be vigilant to situations that can change quickly for better or worse.  Thus it is dangerous for leaders to become too despondent when things are going badly, or to become complacent when things are going well.  “This too will pass” is true, but leaders must do what they can to influence their results.  As an old Greek saying goes, “trust in God, but row away from the rocks.”

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Posted on 02/23/2012 9:47 AM by Mary Fink
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Monday, 20 February 2012
Fire in the Belly
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Working for an enthusiastic manager is often fun and exciting.  People want to follow leaders who demonstrate passion for their mission.

Some say that your personality determines your level of enthusiasm and there is not much you can do about it.  Baloney!  Anyone can get excited about a business task or company mission including you.  Get fired up – you can do it!  It is simply a matter of getting engaged with the business and then telling yourself that you are passionate about the goal. Start to act with enthusiasm and speak with passion and before you know it will become part of your persona.

When you exude confidence others will look up to you and you will earn their respect.  Demonstrate “the fire in your belly”  and you will be amazed by the interest and engagement of your associates and your team.

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Posted on 02/20/2012 9:45 AM by Joe Scarlett
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Thursday, 16 February 2012
Build your Public Speaking Skills
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Let’s face it – unless you are a regular, speaking in front of an audience is terrifying.  It is often said that public speaking is the number two fear in life after death.  Some would say it is worse than death.

You will never become a good speaker if you don’t start, so my advice is to take every opportunity that comes your way at work, in your industry or anywhere in the community.  Better yet, seek opportunities to speak about topics which you are knowledgeable and passionate.

Preparation is your key to success. Gather your material, organize it in bullet point format and start practicing. Add personal stories that drive home your key thoughts.  Deliver your talk out loud in front of a mirror and, if you can, record or video yourself.   Listening and watching the practice session can be your best teacher.

If you want to move up the executive ladder, become an effective speaker.  Speaking in front of groups is like any other skill in life - the more you do of it the better you will become.

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Posted on 02/16/2012 9:44 AM by Joe Scarlett
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Monday, 13 February 2012
Let Go and Be Surprised
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We talk a lot in our classes about the down side of micro-managing—a problem for the manager and the managed.  For the manager, it becomes very difficult if not impossible to transition to leadership when he or she wants to be in control of everything employees do.  Micro-managing is a very time-consuming activity, leaving little time for high level thinking or planning.  It creates a mindset in the organization of a lack of trust, of fear (fear of not pleasing, not being fast enough, smart enough, providing the right results).  Leaders must step further and further away from the everyday tasks if they are going to do the real work of leadership, and employees must be left to do the work themselves if they are ever going to develop confidence in their abilities, and grow in their jobs.  I saw a quote recently that struck a chord with me:  “Don’t tell people how to do things, tell them what to do and let them surprise you with their results” (George Patton).  If managers will leave employees alone to do the jobs they are asked to do, everyone might be surprised at the results.  Will employees do things exactly as managers think they should be done?  Probably not, but in many cases the results will exceed expectations.  And isn’t that a happy surprise?

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Posted on 02/13/2012 9:41 AM by Mary Fink
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Thursday, 2 February 2012
Keep Your Word
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You earn respect when you keep your word both in business and in your personal life.  If you don’t keep your word you may become the topic of gossip and which is never positive.  A few tips about keeping your word:

  • Keep track of your major commitments
  • Review commitments and recalibrate expectations if circumstances change
  • Follow up with those to whom you gave your word
  • Confirm that you have kept your word with interested parties

There are occasions from time to time when you have done all possible and you are unable to keep your word.  In these rare circumstances you should be proactive with your communication.  Seek out the impacted parties and give a thorough accurate and realistic analysis of the situation. Then apologize for the shortcoming.

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Posted on 02/02/2012 2:48 PM by Joe Scarlett
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