Using Palmisano’s questions

Inspired by the 4 questions of the ex-CEO of IBM, Sam Palmisano. I wanted to see what questions an employee can ask himself to get what he/she wants from a job:

  1. Why would any organisation pay you?   so What is unique about you?
  2. What skills do you bring to the job to add value to your work?
  3. Why should the organisation carry you along in its growth path? In other words, what are you doing to make sure you evolve along with the organisation?
  4. What uniqueness are you adding to your skillset regularly so that you are entitled to hikes and promotions?

What do you say? Please share your thoughts.

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We are all on Probation all the time

When someone says ‘I am on probation for 6 months in my new company’, my mind goes ‘what are you saying? we are all on probation all the  time in all the places’.

I did not think this way for a long time, I believed in permanent jobs. Be it good or bad, I realize now that we are all on probation all the time. Does completing probation period in an organization guarantee me a life-long job? No, absolutely not. Atleast not in this age of fast, ever changing, volatile world, where even the temperature of earth is going up fast.

Not long ago, this would have been bad news for me. Because I wanted Job security more than anything.

Now? It seems like a good news. Atleast my personal growth is guaranteed due to this probation phenomena. I am constantly challenged to look out for areas where I have to improve, where I can improve and how fast I can adapt to the new demands of the industry.

What can I do to make sure I am continually happy even in this scenario?

  1. Accept the fact that change is constant. And I need to continually evolve to adapt to these changes.
  2. Set aside some ‘me time’ everyday to analyze the direction in which my life is heading
  3. Identify any improvements or learnings that I would need, to move in the direction I want to
  4. Schedule improvement time everyday- Time to learn something new – something which would keep me competitive
  5. Not to missout on the time spent with family. It is the easiest and best way of rejuvenating myself on an everyday basis.
  6. Believe in myself and my abilities. But not to stop there. Take action to reach out to what I want.

 

Stop Obsessing about Looks and Wasting time in the process

I just heard my neighbor saying that she joined gym to improve on her looks. I was dumbfounded. If she joins gym for health reasons, very well, good for her. But for improving her looks? I think she looks great, what does she want to change now?

Why are people so obsessed to change the way they look these days? Yes, it should be our goal to lead a healthy and beautiful life. But not upping the meaning of beautiful everyday and feeling miserable about it. Our life is meant to be beautiful and happy. Let us experience the happiness every moment of everyday in our life. Let us keep our life simple. How much time are we wasting in our life feeling bad about our looks or what we need to change.

Tips:

  • Identify the areas of your life/beauty that you want to improve(if it is really required)
  • Identify the routines we need to do on an everyday basis to reach these beauty goals.
  • Include these routines in your everyday schedule and follow them
  • Forget about it. If you are doing all that is required, why should you bother thinking about it again.
  • Be Happy which is the natural state of Being.

This way, you are more  likely to follow the routines, and see good results. Good Luck!

Say welcome to Simplicity!

Executive Coaching

Executive Coaching is not just managerial frill and fancy. Today, it is widely accepted as a ‘necessary learning,’ needed to augment businesses. It has made its presence felt in India too – top corporate honchos now acknowledge the invigorating role that a coach plays.

What is common to GE’s Jack Welch, IBM’s Sam Palmisanio, and e-Bay’s Meg Whitman? They all had to seek the expertise of an executive coach in order to strengthen their vision, performance and capacities. A Chicago Tribune article once quoted, ‘Who exactly seeks coaches – Winners who want even more out of life.’

As a concept, Executive Coaching is still new in India. In our past, the Gurukul system was an example of a one-to-one coach for individual students. It was built on a deeper inter-personal relationship. In today’s world, the concept of hiring a personal guide and coach is not often possible. However, the growing complexity of businesses in this era of globalisation, has prompted senior management to counsel, seek, and simply talk to a person who can be an amalgam of a sounding board, a critic, a seer, a friend, etc

Extracted from – http://www.isb.edu/isbinsight/Insight_Sep07/Pioneering%20Executive.html

Too Busy to think about Life

It is easy to fall in the trap of being busy all the time. After all, the more busy the people are, the more successful they are. Aren’t they? This is just a mindset our society has created in us from the time we were learning to walk or talk.

Don’t get fooled by it. There are many reasons why people keep busy all the time:

  • To show the world how important they are
  • To prove to themselves that they are doing important work
  • To feel good about themselves that their parents/relatives think they are important
  • To avoid changing their life
  • To avoid thinking about their childhood dreams which they think are not realistic
  • To avoid realizing the fact that the tasks they do everyday are not really getting them what they want.
  • To avoid realizing the fact that WE CAN REALLY CHANGE OUR LIVES THE WAY WE WANT IT

Does it matter? Really? if people think we are important or not? Except in the case where it is your client in business or manager at work. Even in this case, they will think you are important if you consistently produce results on time, but not by being busy all the time.

Don’t you see the longer you stay in this mode, the more your mind is used to working on trivial issues than learning to go deeper in thoughts. Because, to realize our true potential and to take action towards changing it requires deep thinking from our mind. The longer you keep your mind in this state, the more it gets used to it. And the more difficulty you will have in getting it to change.

So, If you think you are busy, just stop and think about it. Consciously think and prioritize what you do and have to do.

Tips:

  1. Allocate ‘me time’ for yourself everyday. For BUSY people, I suggest take 15 mins everyday and think. Just think or write down if you are comfortable. About what you want in life, and what you doing is really what you want.
  2. Write down all the tasks that you do everyday and prioritize tasks. Keep re-prioritizing till you get the schedule you want.
  3. Find out what your dream or vision is. And see what you are doing in your everyday life to reach that dream.
  4. Slowly and steadily change the small tasks of your life to reflect that which you want in life. And to include the path to reach your dream.
  5. Review your changes on a regular basis.
  6. Take a day off in a month or once in three months, and do nothing. Just allow yourself to relax and be with yourself and with the universe.

If you are not able to think of or remember your dream, no problem. This is expected. Allow yourself to unwind in the above said way or whichever way you are comfortable, slowly and eventually you will reach that place in your heart, where you have buried your dream.

There you go….

Sam Palmisano’s 4 questions

During Sam Palmisano’s tenure, I.B.M. has been a textbook case of how to drive change in a big company — when so much of the study of business innovation focuses on start-ups and entrepreneurs.

Here is a glimpse of the thinking behind some of the major steps I.B.M. has taken under Mr. Palmisano’s leadership, based on interviews with him.

He says his guiding framework boils down to four questions:

• “Why would someone spend their money with you — so what is unique about you?”

• “Why would somebody work for you?”

• “Why would society allow you to operate in their defined geography — their country?”

• “And why would somebody invest their money with you?”

Mr. Palmisano formulated those questions in the months after he became C.E.O. in March 2002. His predecessor, Louis V. Gerstner Jr., recruited to I.B.M. in 1993, had already pulled the company out of a financial tailspin, first reducing the size of the work force and cutting costs, and then leading a remarkable recovery.

This info is extracted from a news article following change of CEO of IBM.

WorkPlace challenges – 4 simple ways to success

There are hundreds of challenges at workplace. Each one of them unique based on the situation, person, or management. Few examples are:

New employee acclimatization

Acclimatization to a newer, challenging role

Waiting for that most sought after promotion

Workplace politics

Coping with the change in management

Wanting a salary hike

The micro-managing boss

or The Never available boss

The irritating colleague who seems to have no responsibility

The colleague who does not share information

Or the one who thinks he is superior based on the previous accomplishments, but has no intention of performing now

The list can go on and on… These issues pose different challenges to employees in different roles or levels in the organisation. However, I think there are 4 simple steps which can resolve these issues to a great extent:

1. Be clear on what you want.

                  – Having a list of goals based on the life that we really want. And breaking them down to everyday tasks is very helpful.

2. Get clarity on what is bothering you.

                 – Often times, we are frustrated simply because of confusion. We need to analyse the situation and understand what is really bothering us. Generally, it is more than one reason that is bothering us. Once we know the exact reason, we can have a strategy to resolve each of this issue.

3. Focus on performing at your best each day without fail.

                  – As discussed above, everyday tasks will help in focusing on the important tasks. And keeps you from falling into the Urgent tasks quadrant all the time. Get the required motivation to do your job. Your Lead or the Manager are the best people to talk to. If you have not so healthy relationship with them, its time you build it. After all, what they want is you performing at peak everyday. Time management is also an area to look into and improve as required.

4. Be committed to the Organisations’ goals.

If you need help in any of these areas, feel free to seek help. There are people out there who would love to help you.

Please leave a comment and feel free to share your ideas.

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