The secret to distinguishing yourself lies in who you are – your unique traits, talents and learned skills. Often people think they must conform in order to succeed. They fit within a system and fully adopt its processes and approaches. A degree of that is warranted. However, to do your best work, it has to come from you.
How do you make something yours? Let’s say you are given a project to lead. You can follow accepted procedures and do fine. If you bring your unique vision to the project, you have the opportunity to stand out among the crowd. What can you add that will make results better? What do you bring to the work that no one else can? Making a project yours leads you to success and fulfillment!
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Is there anything new in your life this year? If not, find something. “New” creates momentum, challenge, growth and discovery.
Your life and work can get stale, negatively affecting your morale, outlook and mood. Stay leading edge. Practice continuous improvement. “New” keeps you vital and alive.
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It is helpful every once in a while to reinforce confidence in your strengths and talents. You have gotten yourself this far and are fully capable of getting where you want to go.
Take a moment to inventory your capabilities and affirm all that you have already accomplished. Then, take that confidence and go forth!
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What are your preferred ways to build your skills and keep up on the business world?
If reading is one of them, check out Fast Company Magazine’s “The Ten Best Business Books of 2016”.
Differentiate: to become unlike or dissimilar; to change in character; to make a distinction.
Conformity alone is rewarded in many workplaces. The rewards, however, come at a price. Your conformity robs the world of your unique gifts and talents. How do you balance conformity and differentiation? A bit of each is necessary for your success and fulfillment.
Conformity has to do with knowing the realities of your work world and its expectations of you. Differentiation has to do with bringing your unique perspective to your work. It is an art to balance the two.
You can do it. Start with some experimentation. Bring your unique perspective to projects or issues you deal with in your work. See how it is received and which ideas are successful. There is room for many voices and, when they are heard, you discover the best solutions and approaches.
What new perspectives can you bring to your work today?
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It is good to be self-aware and to know your strengths. What do you think is your best skill – communication and interpersonal relationships, leadership, specific technical or operating ability, sales, management, organizing?
When you know your strengths (and weaknesses) you can address your weaknesses and build on your strengths. It helps you set your career direction and to find the best fit for you.
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Is there something you could do each day in August to create a positive transformation? What you do can be big or small, easy or difficult – what matters is that you transform an aspect of your life or work by taking one step toward the transformation every day this month.
You may, for example, want to be more organized in your work. Each day you could do something towards that aim – declutter, organize or change a perspective you have. By the end of the month, the result can be that you are there – much more organized than when you started the month. Or, you could focus on transforming your interrelationships at work, creating more balance in your life or building a specific skill.
Will you take this on? Vision the end of this month and how good you may feel having met this challenge. As you begin your challenge, feel free to e mail me and I will hold your intention and cheer you on. You can do this!
Tools are devices you use to carry out functions efficiently. Tools aid you in getting things done. To succeed in your work, tools are essential. They supplement and enhance your own skills and capabilities. You must keep your tools sharp and in working order for them to be useful. Often, you have to adapt them to fit your needs and style.
Tools can range from apps that keep you organized, to methods to track projects and performance, to specific approaches to interviewing and hiring, for example. There are many places where tools are defined and recommended for you. One of my favorites is www.manager-tools.com.
What tools do you employ? What tools work best for you?
Coaching meetings succeed when there is meaningful follow-through. Within a coaching meeting, you create a place of safety, focus and transparency. When your team member re-enters their everyday work life, structure and support are needed for results to manifest. An action plan is one way of providing that structure and support.
Action plans should suit the individual situation and be a formal agreement on how your team member will move forward on the items discussed in the coaching meeting. Goals and outcomes should be created collaboratively and fully agreed to by your team member. If there is a disciplinary or low performance issue involved, agreement is needed with the team member that they understand stretching their performance is necessary and the action plan gives them the opportunity to do so. Check-in meetings should be scheduled. As coach, you hold the goals and outcomes at all times. It’s best to not let time slip away, causing missed goals and outcomes.
When individual goals and outcomes are reached, acknowledgement and positive feedback should be given. Formal “closure” should be made when the action plan is completed. In the event of non-performance on the action plan, you can decide next steps.
Action plans are a great tool for clearly setting expectations, encouraging team members to grow and creating movement. Let action plans help fuel the development of your team.
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There are many ways people communicate that go beyond basic verbal communication. To be in tune with others, it is crucial to “notice” these other means of communicating. What are they? People communicate in many ways – with facial gestures, body language, tone of voice, choice of words, eye contact or lack of it, posture, touch and allowing or not allowing personal space. How often do you pay attention to another person’s non-verbal communication?
Over the next week, take some time to sharpen your ability to notice both your and others’ non-verbal communication. Try to discern what is being said beyond surface verbal communications. Noticing helps you increase your understanding of yourself and the people you interact with, resulting in better decisions, more effective communication and better managing.
photo: smarned, freedigitalphotos.net