Posts tagged ‘motivation’
There is a famous old Peanuts cartoon. Linus, ever philosophical, quotes “It is better to light one candle rather than curse the darkness”, whereupon Lucy, ever the pessimist, says something like, “You stupid darkness!”
Whether you celebrate Ramadan, Diwali, Hanukkah, Yule, Christmas, or Kwanzaa, we’re in the season of lights, at least here in the northern hemisphere, where daylight is at its yearly minimum. So what are you doing about the darkness?
Before you answer, consider the advantages of being a Lucy.
- You never have to expend much energy finding the candle and lighting it.
- You don’t have to actually achieve anything, so you don’t have to put forth any effort.
- You won’t have to challenge any of your old beliefs, even the ones that make you miserable.
Are you with me? There is a choice here to be made. To do something positive that causes the light to be lit – or to curse it for not lighting itself.
Make no mistake about it, there is a lot of darkness. You may not be feeling very positive about searching for light, especially if this has been a particularly dark year for you. If it has, the only positive thing may be that you are tired of cursing it.
So here are some suggestions for making sure that the lights of whatever holiday you are celebrating are reflected in your spirits and hopes for the new year.
- One candle might not seem like much in a sea of darkness, so find other holders of light. They are all around, but even if you can’t see them, their flames will keep yours lit.
- If you find yourself among the cursers, refuse to join. Instead, consider turning their curses into kisses by thanking them for their caring about whatever it is that they are cursing.
- Remember, curses pass the tongue quickly but linger in the atmosphere. Before you are tempted to curse the darkness, look around. Do you really want to snuff out those candles, or would you rather let yourself be warmed by the lights of others?
With all our wishes that you feel lightness and joy, today and throughout the coming year,
Dr. Janice and the TGI Team
PS: This was our Winter message to our friends. it was followed by a special offer which, in the spirit of holiday giving, I’d like to offer to you too.
Whether you’re an HR or search professional or consultant, business executive or manager, or just interested in improving human infrastructure, you’ll find our webinar-based training time well spent. And, there will be NO CHARGE! Here are some details:
The course prepares learners to provide basic support to users of Role-Based Assessment, and to apply for Certification. Certification requires passing a written examination and continuing to meet acceptable standards.
At the completion of the course, participants will understand and be able to apply key principles of the theory underlying Role-Based Assessment and the CHI Indicators.
- Know the difference between quantitative and qualitative metrics, and how to integrate their usage into hiring, development, and teambuilding scenarios
- Understand the significance of level of Coherence and how it is used as a quality of hire metric
- Be able to identify Roles, encourage appropriate Role partnering, and promote an environment and culture of Role respect
- Utilize knowledge of Teaming Characteristics to identify best-fit people for a specific organizational mission
- Be able to read RBA reports in depth and apply the knowledge to situations such as hiring, coaching, and teambuilding
That’s a lot of business value!
The course is delivered via GoToMeeting, and provides one Strategic and three General HRCI recert credits. There is no charge for the training or certification, and participants also receive their own RBA reports at no cost.
To register, just call 215-825-2500 and ask for Jenny or Paul, or email jperiquito(at)thegabrielinstitute(dot)com.
The realization is dawning that as July ends, the interns will be starting to leave. Crystal, who’s going to Hong Kong and Macau to visit family, and Lindsay, who’s heading back to Texas, will be the first to go. And I’m wondering how the others will experience their leaving.
It will be good practice for them, given that they are likely to see their colleagues come and go in their future jobs. At least this isn’t a downsizing! Speaking of which, there’s talk of an increase in distressing reactions to being downsized – sabotage, mostly of the technology sort. Just the sort of behaviors that the non-coherent, short term thinking person is more likely to actually do.
But for our coherent, self aware bunch, I expect their future work life to be more productive and positive. They understand that temporary setbacks shouldn’t be turned into permanent ones by letting stress overwhelm and alter behavior in a negative direction. And they act on it. Even in a down economy, coherent people are naturally attractive to employers.
And now I know that internship has long reaching effects on careers. Lauren, our Spring intern, just wrote me. I was concerned that with the job market so poor, she would be locked out, but no, it sounds like she got a job that not only fits her, but which will allow her to help others get a good school fit!
It is a sales/client services position. First part is I have to call potential students and give them information about Ashford and evaluate them to see if they are a good fit for the school. Once that process is over, I help them enroll and will be their guide through their first course. It should be a challenging but fun position. I just finished my 2 week training course and will start officially on Monday.
Congrats and good luck, Lauren! They are lucky to have you! And psssst, just between us, we are about to launch the Role-Based Assessment for careers!
Around the fourth day after Mr. Sperm meets Miss Egg, differentiation begins. (If you slept through high school biology, differentiation is when cells start to get specialized.)
Ok, biology lesson is over. I was just mulling over how week four of the Interns could be subtitled, The Week of Differentiation. It isn’t that they weren’t fully formed individuals when they arrived. It’s how we see them and assign work to them that’s undergone some subtle changes.
Lindsay is continuing to work on social marketing optimization because she’s a star Communicator. Not surprising. This line from her Role-Based Assessment pretty well covers why I wanted her for this project:
She will quickly make contacts throughout the organization and get to know almost everyone. She is especially cooperative and will also try to do almost anything she is asked to do. Her focus is on interpersonal interaction and trying to get everyone to work together harmoniously. She won’t do this by direct means but by attempting to broker the arrangements that bring people together in a positive manner. As a result, she is likely to be respected by those she has contact with.
But we needed to get the database cleaned up so despite the fact that she also had this in her report: “She will not want to do organizational tasks…”, there she was in the conference room with some others, working on exactly that task, with music emanating from someone’s laptop, a pile of snacks, and the sunniest of good natures.
Meanwhile, Kartik, the Action Former, whose report included the following, managed to reorganize, clean up, and optimize my consultant certification files. Here’s Kartik in a nutshell:
This candidate is the type of employee who can be found in the front of the group with marker in hand, developing a list of things that need to be done or important points or assignments. He is the consummate organizer. The key is that he does not organize for the present but as a way of getting things ready for the future. His style is one of handling many things simultaneously. He believes that multi-tasking in a rapidly evolving environment is essential to keep on top of everything.
The others too have their unique qualities and it’s amazing how much more productive they are when we recognize them, give them work they enjoy, and celebrate the results.
It just makes good business sense.
Happy ending: Lindsay has a project beginning Monday that is totally about communicating with people, while Kartik will get a great new organization project!
I’m thinking about tomorrow’s event at Fox School of Business (Temple University) – Where are the Women Entrepreneurs? I’ll be on the first panel and will doubtless be expected to come up with some sage advice for the young women there.
Since this is an academic environment, I’m thinking ABC, so here’s a sneak peek:
A – Admit you’re a beginner.
This one has always served me well since there are so few things I really know how to do. At least I’m always willing to try. This should explain why my lifetime highest bowling score is way lower than President Obama’s lowest one.
B – Be willing to learn from anyone who is willing to teach you.
This goes double if you are conventionally smart. Other people are just as smart but in their own way and you will be amazed at what they know that you never even thought of.
C – Communicate to everyone who you think can help you.
Even if they can’t, they may know someone who can. And if they don’t, you’ve put your needs out to the Universe.
Maybe in a few more years I’ll learn enough to go from D to Z…
If the economy isn’t improving, neither is the stuff of the headlines. Downsizings are bad enough: some can’t be helped and some are probably long overdue if the company is to achieve adequate productivity. It’s the ones where the golden parachutes are opening and nothing’s trickling down the food chain that sadden me. And of course there’s always Bernie Madoff. And Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich. And the suicides – German billionaire speculator Adolf Merckle the latest. Gordon Gekko must be chortling in his celluloid grave.
Arrogance, greediness, fear – oh my! The lions and tigers and bears that threaten to bring our world to collapse are on the prowl.
They are a cycle because they are cut of the same cloth: the greedy denial of reality, the arrogant illusion that you are the only one of importance in the world. You can’t have the infantile arrogance and greediness without the fear that leads to worse and worse decisions. And the evidence says it’s rampant in what e think of as our leaders.
Arrogance, greediness, fear: it’s always a down cycle when these rule. The things that go bump in the night reside inside. Time to out them.
I completely forgot about the resolution I made last year (December 2, 2007 to be exact – why wait for the New Year’s rush?) to write the magnum opus. It must have been simmering on the back burner as the thousand and one priorities got in the way because as the year wore on Jack and I returned to working through details. We even submitted a proposal a couple of weeks ago. Now, with two days to go before year’s end, it is almost complete.
Did it happen because of the resolution? Or despite it?
Human nature being what it is, we are so often our own worst enemy. We refuse to listen to reason, choking off the wisdom of our own inner voice. We take our hard-won power and toss it away like trash. And we fight our most positive impulses with a hodge-podge of anxiety, conflict and confusion.
I’d like to think I did it because I promised you I would and I like to keep my word. So I’ll give you this one for 2009. Words. I’ll be back with a lot more of them.
This blog is one year old today. It deserves some recognition and a bit of celebration, if for nothing else other than surviving and growing. Not much different than a human being.
People used to have shorter life spans, primarily because infant death was so prevalent. Now it’s blogs that don’t last. I don’t know how many abandoned blogs dot the blogosphere but a quick search yielded someone making money from ads on abandoned blogs, which sounds to me like putting orphans out to beg, a la Oliver Twist. The one piece of data I found measured blog life by any activity in the past 90 days (like a post). They gave the chance of survival at 50/50.
Survival is an organism’s first expression of power. It’s power that motivates me more than anything else – the power to make change for the better – so no wonder this mini-obsession with blog survival.
Having gotten through this first year with entries on leadership, including the political and economic, I plan to celebrate this blog’s “terrible twos” by talking about motivation in action – people at work. I’m going to start with the full disclosure of how to measure Quality of Hire using the universal metric.
It seems like the right gift to give a blog.
The researchers, reporting in Psychological Science, conducted three experiments, putting Dutch university students in different scenarios designed to make them feel either dominant or subordinate in “rank”. They were then asked to perform thinking tests, such as puzzles. The “powerless” ones had trouble planning, updating a mental picture and ignoring irrelevant information, the authors reported, attributing this to the fact that low power people are not expected to focus on the overall goals. Consistent with this interpretation, were the results of a fourth experiment using a game designed so that it would remain easy to focus on the task goal. It wasn’t motivation that was the problem. The less powerful participants reported putting in as much effort as others, the researchers said.
Whatever happened to the idea of empowering workers? Especially now when competition for human capital is high and predicted to rise? Yet more and more I hear people talk about structuring jobs to be exactly what is needed – forget what the employee needs. Wake up call:organizations can’t afford to play zero-sum games any more. Command and control just takes those human capital assets and chews them into tiny bits of useless action, uncoordinated by any Vision. And apparently the effect is long lasting.
I want a smarter world, one with more Vision, more power, more mastery, more innovation, more excellence. Ok, that may not motivate you. But what if all those people whose brains lost power because of managerial abuse put in Workers Comp claims?
I love WordPress. There’s a dashboard where you can find out what people searched that led them to your blog, which is how I found out that someone was searching for a way to do a performance evaluation on a receptionist. In the past people had to ask another person directly when they needed something. Now you can just do a search and hope for the best. Except, I suppose, if you really like to get your answers from a person. I do, which is why I’m such a fan of really great receptionists.
Great receptionists may not have all the answers, but they have two important qualities. First, they really want to help you. Second, they usually know who to go to for the best answer. And they don’t give up easily when the answer is hard to find – they just go to the next person on their list.
If you want to find one, you can screen people with Tools4Recruiting and look for a solid Communicator. That’s their Role, their total way of being. Don’t ask if they have the “communication skill set” (I HATE THE TERM “SKILL SET” – sorry for shouting but that is how much I hate that term.) All you will get is people who can speak well and use the spell checker when they send emails. That is not what you want. Assuming you want your receptionist to make customers feel confident you can deliver and to make potential employees really want to be on your team, you want something else. So junk that old typing test.
Managing that receptionist’s performance? I assume you mean motivation. That is everyone else’s job, actually. If you can get them to respect the receptionist by stopping for a moment’s greeting every morning and a “have a great evening” (or weekend) at the end of the day – something that says you really like your receptionist – you should have a loyal, well functioning employee. I hope that’s what you’re after, not a bingo card of meaningless “ratings”.