I never miss an opportunity to coach my readers to career success so posted “Thanksgiving is Good for your Career” last year at this time. A year later, I’d like to add these thoughts.
Count your Blessings
I believe in Thanksgiving so much that, for the past few years, I have tried to adopt a Thanks Living attitude toward everything, including my career. It has been life changing! So, even as we approach Thanksgiving and look forward to being with friends, family, eating delicious food and enjoying each other’s company (whether it is by shopping or watching football), I encourage you to consider the following when you return to work:
Adopt a Thanks Living attitude. While we officially observe one day giving Thanks, as a national holiday, approach your career with a thankful outlook. We all prefer to work around people who express gratitude toward others and are appreciative of having a job and career. Find yourself looking for the positive rather than Continue reading
As we celebrate our nation’s birthday and freedom this 4th of July , I encourage you to also take a moment and contemplate your career freedom.
While we all are familiar with the following famous words, have you ever asked yourself how it applies to you and your career?
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” – from the Declaration of Independence
Can you have both?
Are careers and freedom mutually exclusive? Or can they be compatible and used within the same sentence? While many Continue reading
You may have heard the story about the tourist in Italy who comes upon a construction crew. The first man was pushing a wagon of large rocks. The tourist asked “What are you doing?” to which the man replied, in broken English, “Can’t you see? I’m hauling rocks. I carry to there” as he pointed to a pile near a stone wall.
The tourist asked another man, who was taking the rocks and placing them on one another, what he was doing. The second laborer answered: “I’m building a wall.”
Finally, the tourist approached a third man and asked what he was doing. The man, with dark and weathered skin, grinned widely and threw up his hands to the sky, saying “Grazie – you for asking. I building a cathedral. Molto Bella!”
Interesting responses? All three men were doing relatively the same job but their perspectives were completely different. The third clearly had a bigger perspective to his labor job while the Continue reading
Many companies are evaluating their employees’ performance this time of year. What if Santa Claus was a manager?
We don’t have his Job Description but let’s start with this simple question: Is he a leader? If so, is he a good leader? He definitely is well known and popular with most people. He has a global presence. His reputation is outstanding and he has had a long track record of high performance. He is an authority and has a high level of “business knowledge”. How about his team? Do they like him? How about his “customers” – what do they say about him?
- Santa has a great Brand: Everybody recognizes Santa and parents, as well as children, know they can count on him to bring joy to us during this season. He performs consistently and often exceeds our expectations. His message is clear – Be good and you will get a gift; if you aren’t, oh well. People know what Santa expects from them and what they can expect from Santa.
- Santa is an early Adopter: Santa is curious and keeps up with all the newest technologies, inventions, and gadgets. You might say that he is an early adopter and promoter of innovation. Santa is no stranger to change and doesn’t waste time on the “storming, forming, norming cycle”. He goes directly to embracing all new things and completes diligent research all year so that he knows what the newest trends are that his customers will most appreciate.
- Santa knows his Vision, Tactics & Priorities: Santa Claus has a plan, works diligently for most of the year, communicates effectively and we trust that he and his team will deliver on Christmas Eve. He has boundless energy yet he paces himself so that he can follow through and make his stakeholders happy.
- Santa is a Driver: Santa Claus and his team share the same clear mission. They have clear goals and know how to succeed. His team know their roles and trust each other. If problems occur in the assembly line, they quickly resolve them without conflict. Santa recognizes their efforts, according to an insider; however, his elf recognition program remains top secret.
- Santa is a Role Model to all of us: We never hear or read about Santa in the tabloids. He has an outstanding character, does not lie, cheat or steal. He has never been reported to be involved in scandals of any kind nor does he gossip about others. He is a consummate gentleman and respecter of all. He embraces diversity and loves everyone equally.
Whether or not you are a “follower” of Santa or not, you have to hand it to the guy – He’s GOOD! I rate him as EXCEEDS!
It’s almost Thanksgiving Day and that serves as a reminder of how powerful the spirit of gratitude is to keep you motivated and positive about your career. This past year, I’ve really focused on increasing my awareness of all the things for which I’m grateful and it has done wonders. I encourage you to hold on to that “thanksgiving feeling” year round. Here are a couple of ways you can do that:
Many people leave work with negative thoughts about their workday. If done regularly, or over time, that can significantly hinder performance as well as mental and physical health. One suggestion that positively redirects thoughts is an intentional time of reflection at the end of each workday. Rather than bolting out the door, take a minute and think of three things that went well and for which you are grateful. In psychological studies, this simple activity has been found to improve optimism, resilience and creative thinking after only three months. This tip is so powerful that you may consider applying it to your personal life as well. People who keep a journal of “Three Good Things” by their bedside, and regularly write them down, sleep better and have a higher level of positivism in all areas of their lives.
Even if you aren’t completely satisfied with your career there are, most likely, things that you find enjoyable and appreciate. With a permanent marker or pen, write a one or two word description of those on a stone and place it on your desk or in your workplace as a visual reminder throughout your day. Don’t have a desk? Place one or more of the stones in your pocket and pull them out when needing a reminder of the good things (or people) at work. Creating something tangible makes an effective reminder to be grateful.