Are you having a crisis in your life?

Crisis can be big or small. Right from taking your child for a swimming class to dealing with a tough boss at office.

How you ask a question to yourself is very important.

Ex1: I cannot deal with this. This is really stressful. I dont have time to finish office work, Now, I have one more thing to do.

Change it to:

How can I accommodate this along with my office work. What can wait? And what should be handled now and how much time do I have?

Ex2: Why does my boss never understand how hard I am working. Why cant he appreciate my work?

Change it to:

How can I make sure my boss understands more about what I’m doing and encourage him to give me more support?

Try it. It might just work wonders for eliminating crisis in your life…

Role of Executive Coaches

Executive Coaching

If you are a manager or executive looking to improve your performance, increase your productivity, build your leadership skills, manage your team better or advance your career, coaching can definitely help you do that.

Your coach can help you get very clear on what you want to accomplish and what’s holding you back, set clear compelling goals based on that, develop strategies and action plans, and help you execute while providing the support and accountability you need to bring the best in you.

Bob Nardelli, CEO of Home Depot said this about coaching “I absolutely believe that people, unless coached, never reach their maximum potential.”

  • Set goals that are so remarkable, they appear too good to be true.
  • Gain clarity in your vision
  • Become the leader you always wanted to be
  • Develop a winning team to assist you to achieve your vision
  • Set and achieve proactive, powerful goals rather than just reacting to life!
  • Travel through the minefields of the executive world with confidence and results
  • Breakout of self-defeating behaviors!
  • Gain a totally loyal partner to assure that you achieve executive greatness!
  • Unleash the powers within you, to accomplish more than you ever thought possible!

The Role Played By Executive Coaches

Coaches help clients and their employers set realistic development goals. They create practical action plans to reach those goals. And they monitor their clients’ progress to ensure they are taking responsibility for their commitments.
Coaches help the client identify causes and solutions when objectives are not being achieved.
Coaches ask questions. Sometimes they play devil’s advocate, asking tough questions that force their clients to review their own progress, assess what’s gone wrong, and decide what actions to take next.
Coaches review a client’s experiences, successes and challenges, to help them understand what kinds of behaviours generate the best results.

Compulsion of Comparison

I recently planned to attend a training.

I thought about what I want to get out of this training, and decided that whatever might happen, I am going to get as much info as I can and ask all relevant questions to improve my understanding.

When the day came and I was sitting in the training. I was overcome by feeling of comparison, competition. Feelings like what would others be thinking. Am I inferior or superior to others. Am I better than them. When I wanted to ask a question, I was thinking “what would others think if I ask questions again and again”.

Fortunately, the realization that ‘I am getting into a compulsion for comparison or competition’ dawned on me. The compulsion can arise from experiences of childhood or sheerly due to human nature. I realized I can choose to not get influenced by my thoughts. And instead focus on what I wanted to get from this training. Thankfully, the fact that I planned for what I wanted before the training itself, helped me focus easily on what I wanted.

Being self-aware ‘what thoughts I am going through in any given moment’ and being clear ‘what I want from a particular situation/scenario’ helps tremendously in focusing and succeeding. And also a feeling of fulfillment comes.

What do you say? I would love to hear your such experiences.

Show that you are upto the higher job

So One Job Isn’t Enough For You?
Tara Weiss, 01.08.08, 3:00 PM ET

Sometimes you’ve got to show the higher-ups you can do the job before they give it to you.

Forward-thinking employees know that and are taking on additional responsibility to prove they should get promoted or switch departments altogether. Yes, it takes additional planning–and lots of extra hours at the office–but the effort can pay off.

“It’s like having a business plan for yourself,” says Janet G. Lenz, an assistant professor and career counselor in Florida State University’s career center.

Take Greg Topalian. He started working at Reed Exhibitions 10 years ago as a salesman, and now he’s a senior vice president at the Norwalk, Conn., trade-show operator. His steady climb up the corporate ladder is a direct result of asking himself what it takes to get to the next level.

“This wasn’t about how I could steal my boss’ job,” says Topalian. “It was more, ‘What skills does he have that I don’t?’ When I started as a salesman I realized my sales director does things I don’t, so I’d offer to help. I’d say, ‘How can I make your life easier? Can you show me?'”

Prior to getting his current job, he served as group vice president at Reed. Once he had that job under control, he analyzed what it meant to be a senior vice president. One of the job’s main aspects is thinking globally. Topalian demonstrated that mode of thinking by creating a training model for all exhibitors on how to get the most out of their trade shows.

“It made our most senior management feel that I clearly grasp the nature of the senior vice president role,” says Topalian.

And that’s what all hiring managers want. As Karen Rohce, vice president of human resources at Sun Microsystems, puts it: “Experience is the best classroom.”

To get it, employees need to set up a supportive structure. First, explain to your boss that you greatly enjoy your job, but you want to take on new responsibilities. (It helps if you scout new projects or find a mentor to give you added tasks.) Employees should assure their supervisor that their current work won’t suffer and that these new responsibilities will make them a “value-added staffer.”

Once you find a mentor or supervisor to work with, set up the parameters of the additional projects, including its length of time, along with ways to measure success. Also, get feedback from your “part-time” boss. Was he or she happy with your work and are there skill sets you need to strengthen? It also helps to have your two managers communicate. Ask your part-time boss to send your regular manager periodic updates on your work. This is a great way to remind your supervisor that you’re working two jobs.

The biggest challenge is getting burnt out by the additional hours spent at the office. Avoid that by taking on small projects until you feel comfortable with the new workload and unfamiliar skills. But the bottom line is, if you want to make it to the next level, you’ll need to work more. “There are times when you’ll be doing a 10-plus hour day to get to the next level,” says Topalian. “That’s a reality.”

You can alleviate some of the workload by encouraging your subordinates to do the same thing. “They’re able to take on your lower-end work, which is high-end to them,” says Topalian “There’s a synergy there that’s very important.”

Time is money, Money is bad. OR is it?

We are taught from childhood, that “time is money”.

But I always wonder “Everyone has the same 24 hours in a day. If time is money, then, how a few people earn a meager amount and some in millions/billions”.

The sooner we get rid of our belief that “time is money”, and acquire time management and Goal achievement skills, the better for us.

How about the belief “Money is bad”. Then why do we all want money. Why wanting money should be a secret? Why cant it be just another goal? Money cant be bad if we are not hurting anyone or cheating anyone?

What other beliefs have we ingrained about money in our belief systems? We need to identify all the beliefs. Work through each one of them, if we want to flow freely with our goals of acquiring more money.

What are you trading and for what?

We trade a lot of things to achieve other things.

We trade our “time, energy and creativity” for money. We trade straight talk for gaining approval. We trade negotiation for fear of losing good name(which is a wrong belief and is a topic for some other day). We trade our health and happiness for money.

If we are not careful, we lose a lot in the process.

1. Time with Self
2. Time with family
3. Time to understand what we really want and how we get there
4. Time to think deeply about life and its little learnings
5. Energy to appreciate the beauty of life
6. Energy to play with children.
7. Time and Energy to speak to neighbors.
The list goes on and on..

All our grand plans for life are on the back-burner. The social service that we want to do or an orphanage that we want to open or that religious research/spiritual journey we long for…..

The good news is we don’t have to fore go all these things if we plan well in advance. How?
1. First step is to be aware of what is happening in our life
2. Understanding what we want in life
3. Deciding on how we want to live our life
4. Continuously tweaking our every day life, schedule and goals to suit our wants of the day
5. Continuously strive to achieve the model life and thinking that we want for ourselves and for our loved ones.
6. Take action now. Not waiting for a perfect time, perfect plan, perfect partner etc to start on our grand plans for life.
7. Start talking to the right people for the right advice.
8. Taking regular breaks to recharge our thinking, our body and spirit.

Get a mentor. Get a coach. Build your support network. Do everything that is required and is possible to start on your plan.

Think about it:
This is, after all, my life. And I am responsible for shaping it the way I want it. Then, why dont I start doing it now. Take charge of my life.

Once I have decided on these, it doesn’t matter what I am trading for what. Provided I function within my values and ethics. It is a win-win from hereon in every situation.

What is your grand plan for life?
What do you trade and for what?

Rational thinkers will be Assertive communicators

Assertive communication is becoming very important in today’s world. We need to recognize how we respond to any situation, analyse if that is how we want to respond. Is our response in line with the goals we have for our future. When I think back after 10 years, would I feel proud of my today’s response?

There are three types of communication

1. Passive

2. Aggressive

3. Assertive

There is a fourth – “Passive Aggressive”

An example:

The boss requests an employee to do some extra work over the weekend. The employee has already planned a family trip on the weekend. How does the employee  communicate his concern to the boss.

1. Passive – “Yes, Sir. Sure Sir. No problem.”

                     Accepts whatever is told. The problems he might face at home he thinks he will deal with later.

2. Aggressive – “No. I have other plans. I just cannot work on the weekend”

                      There is no room for discussion left. Employee is angry. Boss is angry.

3. Assertive – “If it is urgent, I would definitely do it. I have a family trip planned for the weekend. If it can wait till monday, I shall do that first thing on monday.”

                      There is room for discussion. The boss might as well accept for his request. Or might consider an other person to do the work.

4. Passive-Aggressive – “Yes Sir, No problem”.

                      Employee then goes to the rest room or to the tea point and starts talking negative or shouting or crying or complain continuously with colleagues, based on the type of person he is.

So, we can see that if I think rationally, I talk assertively. Because, I understand the following:

1. The boss is also human.

2. I am human. And the boss knows that I have my personal obligations.

3. If I accept the work, and not able to do it. It would be a problem for the organization.

4. If I refuse the work, It might be damaging to the organization if it is really urgent.

5. Instead of assuming the work is urgent.  I can confirm with the boss if it is urgent and take the next step.

6. Moreover, my boss is my boss. So he might very well come up with an alternative if he knows that I have genuine reason.

We all are leaders irrespective of our job role. And an Effective Leader is Assertive.

Wikipedia definition for Assertiveness is   ” a form of behavior characterized by a confident declaration or affirmation of a statement without need of proof; this affirms the person’s rights or point of view without either aggressively threatening the rights of another (assuming a position of dominance) or submissively permitting another to ignore or deny one’s rights or point of view.”

It takes time to develop assertive behavior. Let us start it today.