background preloader

Improvement

Facebook Twitter

How to Get Employees Excited to Do Their Work. What keeps you up at night as a manager? Are you worried about hitting your numbers? How to boost the results of lower performers? What about how to keep top performers motivated? We often believe that the most effective way to respond to these concerns is to directly tell our employees what to do. Directing a team is certainly one way to achieve your goals. But while it’s tried, it’s also tired. No one wants another checklist task that they have to complete. The challenge is how to shift someone’s response from “I have to” to “I want to.” The vertical axis measures emotional connection. On the horizontal axis, we have content. Looking at the four quadrants, most of us default to Inform and Direct as a way to get things done. We worked with a client at a financial services company who had a direct report, let’s call him Bill, who was not well liked.

After many dead ends, Bill’s manager shifted her approach. Inspiration is not something to be left for the annual company kickoff. 22 Habits That Will Make Your Life a Little More Peaceful Each Day | Brianna Wiest. 1. Throw out, sell or donate everything you don't need. Use this guide to minimalism to help you decide what you're keeping in excess. If there's anything that will immediately release your anxiety and put you at ease, it's making the choice only to keep the physical things that either serve a purpose or hold a positive meaning for you. 2. Organize everything you do. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. Also on HuffPost: Close Alamy Diversify Your Investments “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” can be applied to investing. From Alexa von Tobel Diversify Your Investments“Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” can be applied to investing. TED Talks to Help You Kick Ass at Work (and in Life)

A Completely Non-Intimidating Guide to Writing (Infographic) The One Thing Everyone — Yes Everyone! — Really Wants. People may be very different, but there’s one thing everyone wants from friends and peers, research shows. (Photo: Getty Images/Portra Images) You may not have a deep desire for a cushy job, designer duds, or a luxury car. But according to a new research review, everyone — yes, everyone — has the need for a high level of social status. Theorists have debated this question for decades: Is it human nature to want high standing in one’s social circle, profession, or society in general? So researchers from University of California, Berkeley’s Haas School of Business reviewed hundreds of studies to find out. Their conclusion: Each person, whether they realize it or not, cares about their status. The findings were published in the journal Psychological Bulletin. Status is defined as respect or admiration, voluntary deference (people willingly listening to you), and social value (possessing characteristics that others want to emulate), according to lead study author Cameron Anderson, PhD.

Stand Out in Your Interview. You’ve just landed a job interview for a position you really want. Congratulations. Now, you know you only get one chance to impress, but how exactly do you do that? Given all of the conflicting advice out there and the changing rules of getting a job, it’s no wonder that job seekers are confused about how to best prepare for and perform in an interview. What the Experts Say One common piece of advice is to “take charge” of the interview.

Prepare, prepare, prepare Most people know they need to show up to the interview having done their homework, but both Fernández-Aráoz and Lees agree that people rarely prepare enough. Formulate a strategy Before you enter the room, decide what three or four messages you want to convey to the interviewer.

Emphasize your potential “No candidate will ever be perfect, and you will be no exception,” says Fernández-Aráoz. Ace the first 30 seconds First impressions matter. Don’t be yourself Lees calls the “be yourself” advice “demonstrably untrue.” Do: Don’t: How to Trick Yourself into Doing Tasks You Dread. For some of us, checking off each item on our to-do lists provides the endorphin rush we need to make task completion an intrinsic joy.

But most of us need a little extra motivation, especially for boring work like recording billable hours, uncomfortable tasks like facing awkward conversations with dissatisfied clients, or major projects like writing a complex case study. Setting up a compelling reward system can help you power through your to-dos. Here are four types of rewards to consider: Regenerative By rewarding yourself in a way that recharges your body and brain, you’ll give yourself more energy to tackle your next task or project. Examples of regenerative rewards include: Productive Often—hopefully—work is rewarding in and of itself: meeting with colleagues you respect and enjoy or crafting a PowerPoint deck that incorporates humor or favorite photographs. Other examples of productive rewards include: Concurrent Some concurrent rewards include: Cumulative Examples include:

Mindfulness Can Literally Change Your Brain. Executive Summary Mindfulness is a buzzword in the business world, but many don’t know that the hype is backed by hard science. A 2011 study of participants who completed an eight-week mindfulness program found that the density of participants’ grey matter significantly increased. Compared to non-meditators, people who practice mindfulness demonstrate superior performance on tests of self-regulation and show more activity in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), which handles impulsivity and mental flexibility.

The hippocampus, which is associated with emotion and memory and is important for resilience, also showed increased grey matter in the mindfulness program participants. Mindfulness shouldn’t be considered just “nice-to-have” – it’s a must-have, keeping our brains healthy and protecting us from toxic stress. The business world is abuzz with mindfulness.

But perhaps you haven’t heard that the hype is backed by hard science. (Source: Tang et al.) (Source: Fox et al.) Signs That You Lack Emotional Intelligence. Executive Summary Often, emotional intelligence is the key differentiator between a star performer and the rest of the pack, yet many never embrace the skill for themselves. Do you think being liked at work is overrated? Are you surprised when others are offended by your comments, and do you feel like they’re overreacting? You might be lacking in emotional intelligence, but there are strategies to help you improve. A critical component of emotional intelligence is self-awareness, so get feedback to help you understand what your problematic behaviors are. In my ten years as an executive coach, I have never had someone raise his hand and declare that he needs to work on his emotional intelligence.

Take Craig (not his real name), a coaching client of mine, who showed tremendous potential and a strong ability to drive results for his company. Here are some of the telltale signs that you need to work on your emotional intelligence: So what do you do if you recognized yourself in this list? Uk.businessinsider. GettyAlbert Einstein. Cognitive science has come to a few conclusions about the mechanics of learning. For example, if you're trying to remember what you read, highlighting doesn't help. On the other hand, flash cards do. The difference lies in what psychologists call desirable difficulty.

Essentially, when learning feels difficult, learning is actually happening. It's like when you lift a weight that's at the limit of your capacity — you get stronger, faster. "With desirable difficulty, you're training your brain to think that something is important to your survival," Benedict Carey, author of "How We Learn," tells Business Insider. The most effective learning strategies take advantage of this. Such as: Retrieval: Where you force your brain to recall a fact, like with flash cards or the Cornell Notetaking System. Spacing: Instead of trying to "cram" knowledge into your brain all at once, you return to a subject over a number of days. It's powerful knowledge for learners — and educators.

How to Handle 3 Types of Difficult Conversations. Many of us find ourselves in professional situations where we believe someone has wronged us, treated us badly, or just plain made us mad. The expert advice often is to have the courage to have an honest conversation, air the grievance. No one can help you solve a problem if she doesn’t know you have it. But that’s easier said than done, right? It helps to have guiding principles to call on when you need to work through something difficult with a colleague. But the context of your discussion also matters.

Do you need to take a stand on something? If you’re mad about a decision that affects you . . . We’ve all had white-hot reactions to news that affects our jobs. The wrong way: “I just found out that Peter got double the raise I got. A better way: Take a broader view of the issue. After discovering that her peer received a much larger raise, a young partner in a law firm successfully employed Brett’s approach of framing the problem as an organization-wide challenge.

Develop a Better Kind of Mental Toughness by Living like a Hydra. The First Step to Being Powerful. “I am such a big failure. I can’t believe that I’ve made this mistake and it’s cost me months and months of time. I might never recover…What an idiot to not see that one coming.” On and on, he went. In distress, my colleague was clearly suffering because of a recent fiasco. Seeking counsel, he had come to me supposedly to problem solve. But all he could focus on was how this incident made him a failure. Talking to yourself like you are worthless is not helpful. Sometimes it’s less important to know how to learn specific things, than how growth itself works. Most of us talk to ourselves in ways we’d never talk to anyone else. This is a not about self-help, though it might help you. Talent of all sorts is valuable to an organization only when people feel free to bring their differences to work.

When I share this personally awkward story in public, I do it to point out a truth about unlocking our economy. But that puts the power of your being seen in someone else’s hands, doesn’t it? How to Spend the Last 10 Minutes of Your Day. How much sleep did you get last night? If the answer is “not enough” you’re hardly alone.

According to Gallup’s estimates, almost half the people you’ll run into today are suffering from some level of sleep deprivation. We often dismiss a little morning fatigue as an inconvenience, but here’s the reality. Missing sleep worsens your mood, weakens your memory, and harms your decision-making all day long. It scatters your focus, prevents you from thinking flexibly, and makes you more susceptible to anxiety. (Ever wonder why problems seem so much more overwhelming at 1:00am than in the first light of day? It’s because our brains amplify fear when we’re tired.)When we arrive at work sleepy, everything feels harder and takes longer.

It’s worth noting that no amount of caffeine can fully compensate for lack of sleep. To perform at our best, our bodies require rest—plain and simple. So, how do you get to bed earlier and get more sleep? Read something that makes you happy. Who’s Doing Common-Sense Reasoning And Why It Matters. Editor’s note: Catherine Havasi is CEO and co-founder of Luminoso, an artificial intelligence-based text analytics company in Cambridge. Luminoso was founded on nearly a decade of research at the MIT Media Lab on how NLP and machine learning could be applied to text analytics. Catherine also directs the Open Mind Common Sense Project, one of the largest common sense knowledge bases in the world, which she co-founded alongside Marvin Minsky and Push Singh in 1999. Imagine for a moment that you run into a friend on the street after you return from a vacation in Mexico. “How was your vacation?” “It was wonderful. No surprises there, right? Now imagine you try to have that same conversation with a computer.

Part of the problem is that when we humans communicate, we rely on a vast background of unspoken assumptions. As advanced as technology is today, its main shortcoming as it becomes a large part of daily life in society is that it does not share these assumptions. Why Is It Important Now? How Turning My To-Dos into a Story Boosted My Memory and Solved My Procrastination Problem. Very interesting, Thorin. I've been playing with the idea of transforming todos into stories, to give them some meaning and context, but I write notes about each todo.

Sometimes I've tried to write stories about the todos, but it usually derives to the form of a diary, which is mostly boring, and not very useful, since it happens afterwards. Your approach has interesting differences: - third person point of view (you write as though you are not you) - you write before the day (and not after, as a log or diary) - you emphasize the fictional storytelling (it's a fun reading) - it's ONE note for ALL todos, not one for each. I do believe in deliberately creating (or reminding one of) context and meaning, in a sometimes dull everyday life. I admit it can be time-consuming, but I just need this kind of help, to remind me of the projects I'm already working on (I tend to keep starting new ones). How to be fitter, happier and more successful: stop dreaming and start getting real | Oliver Burkeman. In 2011, the New York University psychologist Gabriele Oettingen published the results of an elegant study, conducted with her colleague Heather Kappes, in which participants were deprived of water.

Some of these parched volunteers were then taken through a guided visualisation exercise, in which they were asked to picture an icy glass of water, the very thing they presumably craved. Afterwards, by measuring everyone’s blood pressure, Oettingen discovered that the exercise had drained people’s energy levels, and made them relax. The implication is startling: picturing an imaginary glass of water might make people less motivated to get up and head to the watercooler or the tap in order to quench their real, non-imaginary thirst. This conclusion is precisely the reverse of one of the central tenets of pop psychology: the idea that picturing the future you desire makes it more likely you’ll attain it.

Thankfully, not all kinds of thinking about the future are quite so self-sabotaging. 6 Tricks To Becoming A More Positive Thinker. "There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so. " -- William Shakespeare When something goes horribly wrong, our emotions hardly feel like a choice. It's logical to feel upset, angry or guilty about a negative situation, so it only makes sense to react accordingly, right? Not entirely. Research suggests that our happiness is more of a choice than purely influenced by circumstance. It isn't hard to be one of those people who looks on the bright side of life, but it might take some practice. Don't be a Pollyanna. Despite popular belief, positive thinkers don't always see the world through rose-colored glasses.

"Many people think that positive thinkers only look at the good side and ignore everything else," he tells The Huffington Post. Practice awareness. The difference between those who see the positive over the negative also lies in their observations. "Most negative thoughts aren't conscious, we're not even aware of them," he explains. Avoid labeling your thoughts. How Top Business Leaders Spend The Day. How To Be The Most Positive Person In The Room. How To Be The Most Positive Person In The Room. 7696768c-2c3d-11e4-b021-22000a919507-large.jpeg (JPEG Image, 960 × 735 pixels) The Most Productive People Know Who to Ignore - Ed Batista. 9 Things Successful People Won't Do | Travis Bradberry. How To Be More Productive: 15 Lesser-Known Ways To Boost Your Productivity.

How Successful People Reach Their Goals. Simple Ways To Reinvent Yourself At Work. The 9 Types of Intelligence By Howard Gardner... Life Advice From Jim Whittaker. Be Kind to Yourself | Mike Robbins. Brain function 'boosted for days after reading a novel' - Science - News. Lonely? Or Lots Of Friends? Brain Structure Varies With Social Connectivity, Scientists Find. How to Support Your Child's Emotional Intelligence | Jan Cloninger and Rosemary Strembicki, LCSW.