EVERYTHING!! It is easy to see this wherever you go. If something in your life is not going well, assume you have the ability to improve the situation. Ask yourself, “what can I do to lead myself, and or others to a different and better solution or practice.” If good things are happening, it is because someone is exercising leadership (it might be you!). If mediocrity prevails, it is because someone isn’t leading very effectively (it might be you!).
I ran across the article below from a twitter feed that I follow. Excellent article with good advice for mentors or others working with new employees. What I like about the information is that if you ARE a new hire, or relatively inexperienced in a leadership role, you can learn a lot about how to make yourself more successful. Here is the first part of the article:
Seasoned workers often complain about the unrealistic expectations and mistaken judgments of young, inexperienced employees. Yet organizations need junior people, beginners who aren’t aware of, or even interested in, everything their predecessors have done for the last 10 years.
But you can ease junior employees’ entry, help them be more productive, and encourage their receptivity to senior colleagues’ intentions and concerns. Here are some ways to start young staffers off on the right foot and keep them on track.
When challenged, if your first thoughts and words are to defend your actions, to offer reasons or excuses, or find someone to blame…you are being defensive. When you respond defensively you effectively say that you are not qualified for leadership. If it happens often you might as well be saying “I’m not qualified for my position.” Phrases like “I was just…”or “But you don’t understand…” or “It’s not my fault” are defensive phrases.
Here is an interesting exercise which I have found quite enlightening the times I’ve done it. Keep track of your day in a log accounting for every minute of your day in 15 minute blocks for a week. Log how much time you spent answering emails, on Facebook, talking with coworkers, making phone calls, eating, driving, watching TV, surfing the internet, etc.
This is a fundamental principle of life. Everything comes down to relationships. How we interact with others, and the quality of our relationships, is more indicative of potential success than how smart you are. Those who recognize this and work to maintain positive relationships are more likely to succeed, be healthier, happier, and have less stress in their lives.
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.
Shortly out of college, many years ago, I found myself as Pastor of a small congregation in Pennsylvania. In that role I learned a few things which have definitely contributed to my life since then. One of those has to do with public speaking.
Preaching, even to a small crowd, can be intimidating. This is true on so many levels, but the one which crosses over to the student experience is the fact that the more you do anything, the better you typically get at it. Preaching two or three times a week honed my presentation skills. I read additional books on how to preach effectively and practiced different styles. When God led me into higher education I was easily able to transition into the classroom, because I had become comfortable in front of an audience.
The Growth Mindset indicates that while some may have a natural talent for something, like public speaking, anyone can develop skills and abilities to excel and even surpass those with more talent, who refuse to apply themselves. My experience as a Pastor demonstrated the truth of that to me. But, becoming better at public speaking or anything else requires effort.
That takes me to the title of this post: “Seek Opportunities to Present.” Volunteering to present in class about any subject will do two things, it will continue to improve your ability to make effective presentations, and you will learn the material better, and retain the information longer. Really, apart from the nerves, it is a win-win proposition.
I am guessing you are busy. Probably VERY busy. Possibly near drowning in busy. I’ve been there and I have discovered a way to keep myself organized and along the way become extremely efficient. It starts with a program/application called Todoist. I’ve recorded a short tutorial about Todoist below which spells out what it can do and shows you the basic screens. As I mention in the video, I like this program for several reasons:
It is free. While there is a paid version, you don’t really need it.
It is cross platform, meaning I can have it on my desktop on my computer (I always keep a tab open in my browser to Todoist, which I consult several times a day) and on my phone or tablet. By having it on my phone, I can easily add to it anywhere I’m at and it syncs up with my other versions.
It can connect with Outlook or Gmail or Google Calendar – meaning I can take emails and send them to Todoist
It works with virtual assistants such as Alexa or Google Assistant.
I can easily add repeating events – this is a big plus and one almost impossible to do on a paper list.
It is EASY – this is not a complicated program. It is extremely easy to use – which means that I actually use it!
The only thing that was difficult in switching from paper lists was committing. To get the most out of Todoist you need to go “all in.” Once I did that I couldn’t have been happier. I add to my list easily. I can rank the items on the list for importance. I check off what I’ve completed, and what I haven’t completed I simply move to the next day.
Check out the video and give it a try – I think you’ll love it!
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.