BYOM – Bring Your Own Motivation 4

images (28)If you are waiting for someone else to jump-start your career, promote you because you’re a nice person or get your life back on track, you’re going to be waiting for a very long time. Everyone has a long list of things that they’d like to accomplish and making sure you’re happy isn’t one of them. Motivation is inside out – never outside in. No one can motivate you – but you. Until you take that first step and show some initiative, everything will remain the same. Nothing changes until you do. Others can help you by creating an environment that is conducive to getting you off your couch, but until you’re convinced it’s the right move to make – it’s a safe bet that you’re staying put.

If you aren’t happy doing what you’re doing, then what’s it going to take to get you doing what you’d rather be doing? What’s getting in your way? What needs to happen for your circumstances to change? Take a moment and write a list of all those things that are holding you back. (Lack of finances, no experience or credentials, etc.) Now for each item that you put down on that list, what do you have to do to change it? Take a part-time job to earn extra money? Go to night school to pump up your resume? Gain some valuable life experience and networking opportunities by volunteering for a worthy cause?

Stop complaining. Put a plan together and start working your plan. You’ll be amazed at how far you can go when you stop making excesses and start producing results. You’ll be amazed at how far you can go when you stop blaming others and start putting the blame squarely on your own shoulders where it belongs. If you don’t believe in yourself – then how to you expect others to believe in you? Repeat after me “Anytime is a good time to start a new beginning. So I might as well start now.” I have faith in you. You can do this.

Copyright (c) 2014. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Looking for a keynote speaker? Planning a lunch-n-learn or training session? Contact Brian today. He will customize and deliver a program that is right for you, your people and your organization. To find out more visit http://briansmithpld.com

Things Won’t Get Better Until You Do 6

Delegate 2We all feel overwhelmed at times. We all feel tired and can’t seem to find the willpower to carry on. We all have self-doubt, feel unappreciated and wonder why we keep doing what we do. But what separates each and every one of us – is the strength we find within ourselves to get up off the floor and get back in this game we call life. Mind you some are better at it than others. And some decide to give it up all together and walk away. And that’s OK. It just means they haven’t figured out yet what they want to do with the opportunities they’ve been given. They are still searching for meaning in their lives. I believe we all have the capacity within ourselves to lead the kind of life we envisioned for ourselves. We all have the ability to change – to develop the kind of skills we need to be better at what we do.

Worth Remembering … “When you’re up to your neck in alligators it’s easy to forget that the initial objective was to drain the swamp”  – Unknown

The question is – Are you willing to make the kinds of changes you’ll need to be more effective at what you are doing? Are you willing to make the kind of changes needed to learn how to communicate and listen more effectively, get along with others, manage your time or cope with stress?  I believe we are all born a certain style which subconsciously dictates the way we act and react to what’s going on around us. We need to learn to react in a way that is going to get us what we want.  How does a good communicator and listener act? What changes will you need to make to manage your time more effectively, to get along with others or cope with stress?

Worth Remembering … “Between stimulus and response is our greatest power – the freedom to choose.”  – Stephen R. Covey 

There are two things I know for certain about people. Motivation is inside out never outside in. People are motivated to change if they believe there is a payoff. They are motivated to make a change in their lives if they believe it is worth while. It’s what I call a WIIFM. (What’s in it for me). And the second thing I know for certain about people is that they get to decide how they want to react to any given situation. It’s a choice only they get to choose 100% of the time. No one else has the power over them to make them do something they don’t want to do. Now it’s true that we may not like the choices we have to choose from – but it’s a choice none the less.

Worth Remembering … “If it is important to you, you will find a way. If not – you’ll find an excuse” – Unknown 

If you are feeling overwhelmed what changes do you need to make? Do you need to have a shorter to do list? Do you need to learn how to prioritize and manage your time more effectively? If you are feeling tired what changes do you need to make? Do you need to take more “Me” time to recharge your batteries to cope with the stress in your life? Do you need to learn how to say “No” to others so you can say “Yes” to yourself? If you have self-doubts, feel unappreciated and wonder why you keep doing what you’re doing what changes do you need to make? We are adults and adults can change. We can stop doing one thing and start doing another. And if we do it often enough it becomes us. When you change the habit you change the result. You can learn to act in a way that will get you what you want. You just have to decide what that is. Things won’t get better until you do.

Copyright (c) 2013. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Looking for a keynote speaker? Planning a leadership development session or workshop on a variety of soft-skills topics? Contact Brian. He will work with you to insure your event is an overwhelming success. http://briansmithpld.com

Hey Coach Put Me In The Game 8

images (33)What could a coach do for you that you can’t do for yourself? The truth is sometimes you don’t know what you don’t know – until you know that you don’t know it.  Sometimes it takes a coach to point out the not-so-obvious. You know where you want to go – but it may take a coach to teach you the skills you’ll need to get you there. You may need the help of a coach to get you to the next level. You only know what you know – it’s what you don’t know that can hold you back or better yet – propel you forward. The most talented of musicians, athletes and actors can attest to that. Even Tiger Woods works with a coach to help him stay at the top of his game.

Worth Remembering …

In order to be a teacher you’ve got to be a student first” – Gary L. Francione

All Coaches are not created equal  

Think of a Coach that you admire. What is it about their style that resonates with you? Bobby Knight, Coach K and Scotty Bowman have all had success as coaches.  Yet all three went about it differently. What style of coaching would work best for you? Someone who’s been there and done that so they know what they are talking about? A good communicator and listener. Someone who understands you – your strengths and your weaknesses. A coach who won’t tell you what  you want to hear but will tell you what needs to be said.  Someone who is patient when they need to be yet unforgiving when the situation warrants it.   A disciplinarian – a teacher, guidance councilor, cheer leader and mentor all rolled into one. A Coach who will push you to reach higher and go farther than you thought you could.

Worth Remembering …

If you want something you’ve never had – then you need to do something you’ve never done.” – Drina Reed

A Coach can’t do the work for you 

There are no silver bullets here. A coach can’t do the work for you. You still have to play the game. You still have to put in the time and effort it will take to get you to where you want to go.  A coach can show you the way – but you still have to walk the path. When you come to a fork in the road they can steer you in the right direction. If you are mentally and physically capable of taking the next step – then the only person standing in your way is you. Motivation is inside out – never outside in.  A coach is not there to be your best friend. They are there to help you get up off the mat and begin again. A coach is there to help up fill in the gaps and teach you what you need to know.  So go out and find a coach you can work with – one who can help you get in the game. – Cheers 🙂

 Copyright 2013 (c) |Brian Smith -Author, Communications Expert and Management Consultant works with people who want to learn how to communicate and interact more effectively; and who want to discover how to get the best out of themselves and others.  To find out more about Brian and what he can do for you or your organization visit http://briansmithpld.com

Staff Disengagement – Top Trends and Remedies to Re-energize Your Workforce 2

Do you feel at times that your staff have tuned-out or have turned-off? Absenteeism on the rise? Is it getting more difficult to motivate others? Are you finding it more challenging to retain talent? Well you are not alone. Results of a survey conducted by Towers Perrin revealed that the number of staff who reported being highly engaged at work was only 17%. Fifty-Nine percent of those surveyed indicated that they were moderately engaged at best; and 24% said they were actively disengaged. And worse yet – those disengaged employees were busy acting out their unhappiness, undermining what the engaged co-workers were trying to accomplish.

What can you do to reverse this trend? 

What can managers and business leaders do to engage the hearts and minds of their employees? According to Dr. David Vik – author of, “The Culture Secret” it starts at the top. Every organization has an identity – a culture – that is best defined as the values, beliefs and attitudes that are shared by all members of the organization. Think of your organizations culture as the rudder that keeps the ship on course. Tony Hsieh – CEO of Zappos believes “If you get the culture right, then a lot of really amazing things happen on their own”. Without a solid foundation you stand little chance of retaining or attracting new talent.  Your mission or value statements should be more than a catchy phrase or sound bite. Every decision you make should be a reflection of those values or you shouldn’t do it. All too often there is a disconnect between what we say we are going to do – and what we actually do. All too often we send out mixed messages and lose sight of why we do what we do and for whom.

Have you given them enough reasons to want to stay?   

Everyone is competing for the same talent. Why would they want to work for your company instead of your competitors? What can you offer them that your competition can’t offer? How much fun are you to be around? If you want to attract new talent or more importantly – keep the talent you have – you need to give them a reason to want to stay. And trust me – it’s rarely about how much money you pay them. Yes – money is important – but it sits at about number four or five on the list of what motivates people. Based on the results of exit interviews conducted by the Saratoga Institute workers left because they felt devalued and unrecognized – there was a loss of trust and confidence in senior leaders – there was too little feedback and coaching or there was too few growth and advancement opportunities. Promote from within based on merit not seniority.

What are you prepared to do about it? 

“The real impediment to producing a higher quality product more efficiently aren’t the workers, union or non-union, it’s management” ( Kenneth Iverson). Change comes from the top down – never the bottom up. Nothing happens by chance. It takes a concerted effort on your part to insure everyone on your team is successful.  If you are looking to re-energize your workforce and attract new talent –  then it’s time to get FOCUSED(C) on what matters most – your people.

F – Friendly: Smile – build collaborative teams. Make everyone feel important.   

O – Observant: Reach out to those in need and teach them what they need to know. But, resist the urge to micro-manage.

C – Consistent: Treat everyone the same. Company policy and procedures are for everyone – specially your super stars.

U – Understanding: Be empathetic – See it from their point of view.

S – Sincere: If you truly want others to be successful it will show in the way that you treat them.

E – Energized: Be enthusiastic – lead by example. Be your team’s biggest cheerleader

D – Dependable: What ever you say you’re going to do – do it. They must be able to trust you.  Your word must be your bond.

Copyright 2013 – Brian Smith. May not be reproduced without permission.  Questions or comments? Please contact Brian directly. 🙂