Making Habits Work for You

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habitsIt’s our daily habits that make the biggest difference in whether we achieve our goals or not.  They can be our greatest help or our biggest hindrance.

Habits are simply behavior we do regularly, automatically and often subconsciously. When something becomes a habit it saves us energy as the behavior becomes automatic and no longer requires mental effort.  For example, it is unlikely you need to think too hard or exercise huge amounts of willpower to brush your teeth in the morning or put your seatbelt on when driving.  If we can develop habits that are aligned to our goals, we also can also save the need exercise so much self-discipline.

Setting clear goals is important, however, Continue reading

Experiences are what matter

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happy-family-silhouette-When I was in my 20s and early 30s, I spent alot of time focussed on chasing achievements.  The next promotion, award, recognition, pay rise or other various forms of validation drove a lot of my motivation.  It was a little like chasing the end of the rainbow.  Really appealing and looks fantastic but does not exist in real life.  That is, you can never find it but there is there constant feeling of chasing it.

On reflection, at the same time, I was part of corporate organisations both in the private and public sector.   I found that when I was in these organisations, it drove this focus on the next goal, milestone, promotion or achievement.  The internal competition, need to validate yourself drives an approach that means that you often forget why we are here.

So why are we here? Continue reading

Are we promoting approval based behaviours as parents to our children?

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fbaby1Harassment and bullying online have become a frequent headline as we live in an age where people are engaging more and more using online social media platforms. My children are currently too young to be able to have their own social media accounts and they are definitely too immature and naive to be able to understand the reality of what behaviours these social media platforms drive. However I was having a conversation recently with a parent who gave me an insight into just how young these children are who are constantly utilising some of these platforms and the impact it can have on them.

What saddens me about all of this is that Continue reading

Governments that back the wrong horses

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402447-bigthumbnailI was on the plane reading the business journal in The Advertiser which is the local paper in South Australia.  There was a very insightful article from industry leaders on 10 March 2015 who had come together in a Round-table forum to discuss how to improve the South Australian economy.  These leaders are all proven entrepreneurs who run successful businesses that export, are market leaders not just in Australia but have also taken many calculated risks that have led to success and also failure over their journeys.

What was also interesting when reading the article was how they were very critical of government in the manner of providing handouts or making decisions or intervening in industries when the private sector would be better placed.  This was particularly Continue reading

Taking the leap of faith. Why moving upstream in the client buying cycle is a must!

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After spending the majority of my time over the past 10 years building relationships with clients, crafting compelling value propositions to secure new work, and coaching others to do the same, I am still amazed about how reactive the consulting and construction industry still is in this area.

Often corporate processes and flow charts highlight the importance of building client relationships and positioning early and not just reacting to tenders when they are received.  The Bid/No Bid or Go/No Go processes are there to follow and are often quite comprehensive.  But even when it is laid out in front of us, we still revert to type too often under stress or when we are busy.

How often do you hear others, or use yourself, lazy responses such, ‘it will just be selected on price’, ‘We didn’t expect the brief to come out that quickly’ or believing that what you want to do is what the client really needs as opposed to truly understanding their challenges and problems!

This reactive and lazy approach usually results in Continue reading

The end is not more important than the means

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entrepreneur-successIs the end more important than the means in any business endeavour?  Does the ultimate outcome quantify success more than whether you have enjoyed the journey?  It is an interesting question to ponder and one that has got me thinking quite a deal recently.

You turn around a business and make lots of money but did not do it the way you know is right.  You secure a great role but have not done the hard work to ensure you can give it your best.   You land a fantastic project through a boys club contact or network rather than legitimately being the best service provider.  All examples where the question pondered is whether we did the hard yards, the positive habits or the necessary rituals to deserve the success that results.

I suspect that this is a question that successful people reflect on often.  They Continue reading

What is your motivation?

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motivationI have had some challenging times in the last couple of weeks with individuals, organisations and projects.  A lot of the challenges have centred around my motivation being very different to partners or individuals that I have been working with. This source of conflict I believe is at the source of why certain people click when working together and others do not.

In terms of expanding on this point, I will work through what I believe are the two sources of motivation that individuals are driven by.  They are: Continue reading

Getting the most out of team members who work remotely or in different locations

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2014_03_31-PM-mapDo you find that it is difficult to manage your business when you have team members that work remotely or are based in different offices? What is the issue? Is it that you don’t trust them to be working on your project? Do you think they will drop your job to work with someone who is in closer proximity in their office if pressured? Do you worry that they won’t deliver what you need delivered because they aren’t local and you can’t control their every move? Continue reading

Dangerous teams – warning, pending explosion!

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groupthinkHave you ever seen or been part of the team, a team so strong, capable, united and seemingly positive to the point of it being dangerous?   Strange words you might say but through my observation there are some very interesting positive and negative benefits of being in and around these type of group dynamics.

If you’re in the team, well, simply put, there is no other team. You guys are thick, real thick. By that I mean you know each other intimately, your strengths, your weaknesses, your hopes, your aspirations.  You work together, you play together and over time you get to the point where you’re almost inseparable and can virtually forecast each other’s thinking.

But is this team highly effective?

Continue reading

Rebuilding your confidence after taking time out from your career

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workingmums__largeToday has been a great day. I received a phone call today with some exciting news and I can’t wipe the smile off my face…

When I first went back into the workforce after taking time out to care for our first two children I found it really difficult. For some reason I constantly questioned my expertise, experience and what I had to offer. It was all self-imposed, there was no-one or no particular situation that fuelled these thoughts, but it did take me a long time to re-build my confidence. Looking back, it seems silly, all that energy wasted in wondering whether or not what I had to offer was good enough.

I remember first reading Sheryl Sandberg’s book ‘Lean In’ and having so many ‘Ah-ha’ moments. Stories I read about others experiences and situations, carbon copies of my own. It was a comfort to learn that other women who take time out from their career to focus on their families often face these same challenges. Not just the juggle of managing your work / life balance, but the constant questioning of yourself and what you can contribute.

To some of you, this probably sounds Continue reading