Your Income Will Soar If This Key Element is in The Right Place

“Attitude is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than what people do or say. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill.”
– W.C. Fields

A positive attitude energizes work and study, stimulating creativity. Boosting your attitude on a daily basis will change the course of your life and career as your optimism translates into enhanced income opportunities.
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7 Steps to Simplifying Your Life – Starting Today!

Is “Success in Work” related to simplifying? Demands and deadlines are an inherent characteristic of modern life, often leading to an unsustainable work-life balance. Success may aid an affluent lifestyle, yet it is often at the expense of healthy well-being. Simplifying areas of your life can seem impossible, particularly when demands upon your time and expertise is great. [Read more…]

Goals: Your Roadmap to Getting What You Want

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“If you don’t know where you are going,
you’ll end up someplace else.”
– Yogi Berra

Are you like most people who make New Year’s resolutions? You may recall that you set some New Year’s resolutions last year. . .but they were long forgotten. Or perhaps, you didn’t set any new goals to achieve this past year. If you did identify a goal, did you achieve it? If someone asked you six months from now what your New Year’s resolutions were for this year, would you remember them?
Are your goals big and bold? Long-term, future oriented? If not, you may not have the inner motivation you’ll need to achieve them.

“In the absence of clearly defined goals,
we become strangely loyal to performing daily acts of trivia.”
– Author Unknown

Are you working towards a specific goal? Or, are you wishing something would happen? A wish changes nothing. A commitment along with action changes everything. Successful people are quick to point out that unwritten goals are just wishes. They know that achieving goals requires more than just wishful thinking.

Read any book on success, or talk to high achieving people and you’ll hear the same message:
Setting Goals + Taking Action = Success.

It sounds simple doesn’t it? But if it is that simple, why aren’t more people successful in realizing their goals? One reason is that many people simply don’t write down their goals, instead relying on their memory to track several goals. Over time, and in the busyness of daily living, goals get forgotton.

“The time for action is now.
It’s never too late to do something.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Becoming goal-oriented requires commitment. Are you ready to take ten minutes of your time right now to set some goals for this year? Don’t delay! Get a piece of paper and pen now and answer these questions:

Reflect on this past year.
1) The most significant contributions I made in my work/family/personal life were:
2) The one thing I would have liked to achieve this last year was:
3) The biggest learning experience I had this last year was:

Set specific career goals for this year.
Imagine yourself one year from now. If you were wildly successful, what would you be experiencing in your work life one year from now?
1) The top three things I will accomplish in the next year:
2) The top two or three skills that I am developing this year in order to achieve my goals:
3) The next step(s) I am taking towards achieving my goal(s):

Identify your dream goals.
Identify a long term goal or dream you have. Imagine yourself with unstoppable confidence as you take action towards creating your dream.
1) If I had more money, confidence, and/or support, I would achieve the following goal(s):
2) The dream that I’d like to achieve is:
3) The actions that I am committed to taking this year towards creating this dream goal are:

Post this list of goals in a place where you will see it every day. Commit to taking action towards your goals. Next, take action! Review your goals and actions on a daily basis, and make adjustments and identify new actions as needed. Then, take action… review…. and take more action!

How to Thrive During Your First 90 Days As A Goal Achiever

“Without ambition one starts nothing. Without work one finishes nothing. The prize will not be sent to you. You have to win it. The man who knows how will always have a job. The man who also knows why will always be his boss. As to methods there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

The actions you take during your first 90 days will usually determine your success or failure in your new position. As a manager, or leader, in a new position you must build momentum during your transition period. When people fail in a new position, their problems can be traced back to problems that developed in their first few months on the job.

To show that you are a top performer in your first 90 days in a new position – you must show your employer that you know your value proposition and can deliver this value to the organization. Early wins help you build credibility and create momentum. So you need to quickly identify opportunities where you can build personal credibility, and show early wins along the way while you’re learning.

While you’ll have a steep learning curve in the first 90 days on the job, you can accelerate your learning curve. This will require you to have a plan in place for your learning. Decide early on what you need to learn and how you can learn it quickly.

5 Success Tips

1) Start by knowing what the company plans are for the future, and the strategy for getting there. Then, know how your position fits in with that strategy.

2) You can learn a lot by becoming aware of, and analyzing, the “outliers” – the things that are working especially well, or those that are not working well at all.

3) You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Most problems have been solved by others, so be sure to create good working relationships with the people who have knowledge and resources that you may not yet have. Seek these people out for advice and feedback.

4) Look for best practices. Find out what the best performers in the industry are doing and imitate them. This is often the quickest antidote to poor performance. Find out who the top performers are on your team and figure out how to implement the top performer’s secrets throughout your organization.

5) Have a learning plan. Know what you need to learn and have a plan in place for learning quickly. Show your employer early wins to demonstrate that you are learning quickly.

7 Steps to Becoming a Breakthrough Performer

What is a high performer? — A self-starter who takes the initiative to “make things happen.”

High performers deliver results consistently.  They initiate new projects and make improvements, and “make things happen.”

When you earn a reputation as a high performer, you increase your value and become recognized as a high potential employee in whom your company will want to invest.

How can you become a high performer?

 

If you want to earn a reputation as a high performer, start practicing the behaviors characteristic of high performers.

1) Take responsibility for your success, and your career. Discover what you’re good at and in which roles you excel. Set goals and challenges and go for them.  Communicate your goals with management, and ask for feedback along the way towards achieving your goals.

Identify your skills gaps, and areas of weakness.  Then, take ownership by seeking out the knowledge you need to perform at a higher level.  For example, is your keyboarding (typing) slower than average?  Does your job require you to type on a computer (email, etc.)?  Simply improving your typing skills and speed will result in high productivity.

2) Seek out a mentor.  Find someone in your company, or someone in your industry, who can provide you with coaching or direction on how to achieve your goals.  Check in with your mentor at least once a month for feedback.  Listen to the feedback, and course-correct where needed.

3) Be a self-starter. Do you wait to be assigned projects or new responsibilities – or, do you seek them out?  Self-starters don’t wait for others to tell them how to achieve a goal. They identify opportunities, propose new projects, and improve work processes and systems.  They believe in continuous improvement, and constantly seek new challenges and ways to improve their work and departmental activities.

4) Achieve more results than others. If you are not consistently achieving more results than expected, identify one or two areas within your position or department where you can make a positive impact within a short period of time.  Look for at least one improvement you can make on a weekly basis.  It doesn’t have to be big, small improvements done consistently create long-term results.

Perhaps you do achieve results on a daily or weekly basis, but the person you report to is not aware of your results.  One way to remedy this situation, is to make notes on the results you achieve, improvements you make to your job, or within your department – and send a brief update on a weekly basis to your reporting supervisor outlining the results you achieved on a weekly or monthly basis.

 

5) Be a problem-solver. Every work team and department has opportunities for improvement. Set an intention to become aware of problems in your work area.

Questions Problem-Solvers Ask:

– What are the issues [at work] we face on a daily basis?”

– What are the things we do that people complain about?

– How can this problem be solved?

What are the issues that slow down workflow – or get in the way of you or your team quickly responding to other departments, or to customers?  Bring up those areas in team meetings – and when you do, be prepared to present a few possible solutions.

Even better, talk with people informally about the problems before you bring up the issue in a meeting. Initiate conversations with co-workers or direct reports about how the problem might be solved.  Once you have some solutions, present them to management and be sure to give credit to the people contributing solutions and ideas.

6) Become “solution-oriented” High performers believe there is a solution to every problem, and are determined to find it.  It’s not enough to become aware of problems – you also have to believe that an easy solution is available.  Seek out solutions to problems.  Hold a positive, solution-oriented focus whenever working with colleagues.

7) Positive and enthusiastic attitude. Successful people show high levels of energy when they approach a task. They don’t dwell on problems or failures. They take a learning approach by reflecting on what they learned when they make a mistake, so they can improve their performance in the future. Most importantly, high performers are highly motivated and have a passion for what they do.

7 Common Work Habits That Could be Holding You Back

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”
– Oliver Wendell Holmes

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One of the best books written on time management and life skills was the enormously popular book – The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People , first published in 1989.   The book, written by Stephen R. Covey sold over 15 million copies in thirty-eight languages in fifteen years.

Covey lists seven principles that, when established as personal habits, help a person achieve “effectiveness.” Covey maintains effectiveness is achieved by aligning oneself to what he calls “true north”–principles of a character ethic that he believes to be universal and timeless.

Our character, Covey says, is a collection of our habits – which consist of knowledge, skill, and desire. Knowledge allows us to know what to do, skill gives us the ability to know how to do it, and desire is the motivation to do it.

The Seven Habits move us through the following life stages: Dependence, Independence, and Interdependence. Finally, to be truly effective, we must find the proper balance between actually producing and improving one’s capability to produce.

Another concept that Covey promotes is called the P-PC balance. P is Productivity, and PC is Productivity Capability.   Covey says that it is easy to get these out of balance and spend too much time on one or the other. Too much “P” means doing a lot of work inefficiently; too much “PC” means focusing on efficiency/design/process but getting very little work done.

The 7 Habits

I: From Dependence to Independence

Dependence is the paradigm under which we are born, relying upon others to take care of us. The first three habits focus on self-mastery, so that we are able to move from dependence to independence.

Habit 1:   Be Proactive
Change begins from within.   Highly effective people realize they improve their lives through their influence, rather than by reacting to external events.

Habit 2:   Begin with the End in Mind
Effective people have a principle-centered personal mission statement.   Their long-term goals are based on personal principles.

Habit 3:   Put First Things First
Highly effective people identify the key roles they take on in life, and make time for each of them.   They spend time on activities that fit within their personal mission, achieving balance between production and building productive capacity.

II: From Independence to Interdependence

Habits 4, 5, and 6 address interdependence. Ideally, we are moving from Independence – the paradigm under which we can make our own decisions and take care of ourselves towards Interdependence – the paradigm under which we cooperate to achieve something that cannot be achieved independently.

Habit 4:   Think Win/Win
We seek relationships and agreements that are win/win (mutually beneficial).

Habit 5:   Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
Covey presents this habit as the most important principle of interpersonal relations. Effective people seek first to understand the other person, and only then try to be understood. Effective listening is putting oneself in the perspective of the other person – listening empathically for both feeling and meaning.

Habit 6:   Synergize
Through mutual trust and understanding, effective people seek synergy.   They resolve conflicts by looking for better solutions than can be obtained through just one individual’s solution.

III: Continuous Improvemen

Habit 7:   Sharpen the Saw
The seventh habit is about renewal and continual improvement. The highly effective person takes time out from production and builds their production capability through personal renewal and maintaining balance among the physical, mental, emotional/social, and spiritual dimensions.

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According to Covey, our daily activities can be put in one of four quadrants. Effective, proactive people spend most of their time in Quadrant II.

Consider: What one thing could you do in your life, that if you did it on a regular basis, would make a tremendous positive difference your life? (It is most likely a Quadrant II activity.)