The word: “Whose Fault is it?” should rarely, if ever, come out of your mouth. Very little good comes from laying blame. Blame is the response of poor leadership. It is indicative of someone who is more interested in self-validation and self-preservation, than success. Instead of blame, focus on why the problem happened, what led up to it, and how it can be avoided in the future; or fixed so that it doesn’t happen again.
Smiling at people will always, always, always have a better outcome than any other facial expression. Mother Teresa said: “I will never understand all the good that a simple smile can accomplish.” Studies have shown that people who smile more had longer lasting marriages, better general well-being, lived longer, and were healthier.
For more on this, check out the short video below:
Regardless of what anyone may say, blood is thicker than water. By that, I mean if you slight someone’s family member, be prepared for battle. Whether it is true or not, the right or wrong of the case rarely matters, and rational thought doesn’t often enter into the discussion.
For more on this, check out the short video below:
Attitudes are contagious, especially yours as the leader. Negativity will sink the morale of everyone around you. It can creep up on you so subtly that you may not even realize it has become a prominent part of your perspective. Stop and check yourself daily, asking “am I displaying a negative attitude, a critical spirit, or constantly griping or whining about situations?”
A colleague of mine often stated that higher education is the only business where the customers are willing to take less than they paid for, and actually ask to be short-changed. By that he was referring to the fact that students will almost always jump at a chance to get out of class early, or have their assignments shortened. I know this to be true, because I was once a student too, and that was part of my perspective.
I was talking with a young lady a few months ago about her educational goals. I asked where she planned to go to college. She indicated a school more than an hour away, even though there were schools locally that had the same program. When I inquired why she would drive that far for the same program, she said that the school she wanted to go to had a reputation for being easier. She was enrolling in a nursing program . . . think about it.
Another student I talked to indicated she never read the assignments and was doing just fine. A different student in a more advanced class also wasn’t reading the assignments but was struggling to grasp the material. I often hear the statement “we are having to teach ourselves,” and it occured to me that you might not understand the dynamics of Adult Degree Completion programs, which is what Belhaven University’s Adult Studies is based on, so I thought I’d explain it.
If you were a traditional undergraduate student you would be attending class two or three times a week over a 16 week semester for a total of 40 seat hours. The Adult Studies model has you in class for the same 3 credit hour course for only 20 hours condensed into 5 weeks. We can do this for two reasons:
By having you read the material ahead of time and attempt the homework, you come to class better prepared to ask questions and with a better understanding of what you need to have clarified. This is a crucial piece and what is often confused with “teaching yourself.” Of course, that means to get the fullest benefit from your course you need to read the assigned material, attempt the assignments to the best of your ability, and meet in class for the full time. Your engagement in the class sessions makes a big difference in what you learn. This model effectively saves you 20 extra hours of sitting in a classroom setting!
Because you are adults, your experiences increase your ability to take the material and integrate it into your life better than an 18-22 year old could. You are better able to see connections between what you are learning and real-life applications; which makes it possible to shorten the learning process, again, saving you many additional hours in the classroom.
I hope this has helped put things into perspective for you. I want you to succeed, but it won’t happen accidentally. It will require real effort on your part and you will benefit most from a passion to get ALLyou paid for by fully applying yourself.
Using good grammar matters in your writing, and it matters in your speech. Poor grammar will have a limiting effect on your career, and do so in a way that you may never know why you are not progressing. Being able to communicate effectively requires you to understand and use good grammar in all forms of communication.
For productive and effective work, there’s nothing like collaboration with people you already like and respect—people you trust and know you can work well with. Eventually, though, it will likely fall upon you to work with someone you just don’t like. If you try to get out of it you only end up looking bad. That’s why learning to collaborate successfully with people you dislike is such a valuable skill.
Here are some starting points—try them out on your nemesis in small-scale situations so you’ll be prepared when you’re assigned to a major project together.
There are some tasks which will make the difference between success and failure at home, work, and life in general. These are the Tasks Which Define Success. Do those tasks well and success is assured, fail to do these tasks or do them poorly and you may be very busy, but not very successful.
A knee jerk response to an offending statement has been the source of many a leader’s downfall. It can label you as emotional and shows lack of good judgement. If you are responding to an offensive statement or challenging email: DON’T, at least until you have some time to ponder the offensive challenge. Simply saying, “ “I need some time to consider what you’ve said,” will give you the time to make a more considered response. Check out the video below:
When communicating by email to anyone (work, family, friends, colleagues, etc.), ALWAYS re-read the email at least once before you sent it. If it is particularly important or going to a supervisor or a large group, read it over several times, at least one of which is out loud. When you read your email out loud you will get a better sense of the tone of voice and more easily catch grammatical errors. Check out the video below: