I’ve been noticing more and more personal development “experts” knocking people that have jobs and pretty much calling them inferior. Some go as far as calling them slaves. A few years ago, I would have shared their opinion (but not nearly as strongly). However, two things have changed my mind. First, I’ve met a number of people that actually very happy with their jobs and the work-life balance that it gives them. But the big eye opener for me was when I taught my first Job Interview class a few years back — half the people in the room were business owners looking to get back into a nine to five position.
Disney is doing something cool with their latest park promotion. This year, they are rewarding people who donate a day of service to one of several charities with a free pass to one of their theme parks. While some have criticized this as a marketing ploy, I feel that it’s a good thing and that we can all learn from it.
As organizations grow and technology allows us to easily do business internationally, communication skills are becoming increasingly necessary to rise to the top. While interpersonal skills are still the most powerful way to climb the ladder of success, another skill is becoming increasingly desirable and provides a great opportunity to get ahead: public speaking.
When you rise up in any organization, the number of people underneath you in the org chart grows. You also find yourself more frequently giving presentations to executives, external clients, the board of directors and even the media. In this type of position, being scared to speak in front of a group of 100 people won’t cut it. You need to be able to confidently and competently communicate to both those above and below you on the org chart – otherwise, neither will take you seriously.
I’m not really into resolutions – I’m into goals. Resolutions are typically made around this time of year and are often long forgotten by Valentine’s Day. Goals (when set correctly) are measurable, require particular actions and have milestones for checking your progress. So that’s why I’ve set a big goal for this coming year to improve something that will positively affect the other areas in my life: my health.
Life is not fair – it never has been nor will it ever be. Unfortunately, one of the most unfair parts of life is that occasionally, we’re treated unfair by others. Sometimes there’s something bothering them and we’re in the wrong place at the wrong time. Other times, the person is simply mean spirited and inflicts pain on whoever he or she comes into contact with. Whatever the case, the worst thing we can do is allow that pain to hurt us over and over again.
Growing up I was the type of person to carry a grudge. When someone wronged me, I wanted revenge – with interest. Yes, it wasn’t enough to simply clear my name or collect my damages, I felt the need to destroy the other person. As soon as someone did something bad to me, I’d start plotting my revenge. It would consume me to the point where I’d be so angry, the mere mention of the person I was angry with would result in a verbal diatribe that could only be described as hateful. I became a miserable person to be around.
There’s an interesting scene in “A Very Brady Christmas” where Mike Brady, the patriarch or the infamous Brady Bunch, is giving a speech before Christmas dinner. Mike’s speech is about the importance of family and traditional values such as honesty. What’s funny is that while Mike’s speech isn’t about anyone in the family in particular, members of his family think that he is talking about them and therefore interrupt him to confess about not being honest with the family.
There’s a piece of advice that I’ve seen floating around the internet that claims that you can create a marketable book in three hours or less. While the claim doesn’t explicitly say that the quality of such a book would get it on the New York Times’ bestseller list, it implies that the book might actually sell. While yes, it is technically possible to create a book in three hours or less, I question the value of such a product and in the three hours spent creating it.
So how does one write a book in three hours? Well all you need to do is speak into a microphone for three hours. That microphone can be attached to a recording device (including a computer with a recording program) so that you can ship off a tape, CD or MP3 file to a transcription service that will provide you with the text of what you have spoken. Or you could use a speech recognition product such as Dragon NaturallySpeaking
(I did an internship at Dragon years ago) that will do the transcription for you.