Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Winning at Working: Incremental Actions Trump New Year’s Resolutions

January 13th, 2014

Winning at Working: Incremental Actions Trump New Year’s Resolutions By Nan Russell NABBW’s Associate for Winning at Work A recent study found that nearly half of us will make New Year’s resolutions in 2014, but only eight percent of us will reach or keep the promises we make for ourselves. Maybe that’s why I’m not a big fan of New Years resolutions. Sure I’ve made dozens of them, all with good intentions and a bit of magical thinking, believing this time the resolution will stick. Maybe a few have, but generally these wishful self-promises end up broken. And when that happens my... Read More

Jumping Work-Hurdles

September 22nd, 2012

Jumping Work-Hurdles By Nan S. Russell NABBW’s Winning At Work Expert It feels great at the end of a workday to know you\’ve made progress on a mounting to-do list, resolved a persistent problem, dealt with a difficult challenge, or accomplished an important objective. Yet, too often we get to the end of a day and haven\’t felt feelings of satisfaction, accomplishment, or progress at work, at least not as much as we\’d like. Instead, frustration, bureaucracy, and unresponsiveness creep in to thwart our well-being. The days when frustration rules are difficult progress... Read More

It Takes Time

June 6th, 2012

It Takes Time By Nan S. Russell NABBW’s Winning At Work Expert The story goes that after one of Ludwig van Beethoven\’s performances, several people were offering him their congratulations, when one woman commented, “I wish God had bestowed me with such genius.” “It isn\’t genius, madam, nor is it magic.” Beethoven replied. “All you have to do is practice on your piano eight hours a day for 40 years.” That\’s not the message most people want to hear. Most prefer buying the magazine which headlines, “Miracle Weight Loss Discovery,”... Read More

Workplace Heists

March 15th, 2010

Seated in the courtyard of a sports bar during a playoff game in the home city of one of the teams, it was an energetic crowd that Sunday. While we\’d come for a quick bite to eat, we caught a glimpse of a play now and then as home-team enthusiasts roared their approval during the first half. When a man sat down next to us with two friends, ordered a pitcher of beer and maneuvered around to glimpse the game, we barely noticed. But when he hassled the waitress every few minutes trying to intimidate her into getting him a table closer to the TV where none existed, his rudeness and her apparent... Read More

Fact or Opinion?

February 12th, 2010

“You ain\’t going nowhere, son. You ought to go back to drivin\’ a truck.” What if Elvis believed this Grand Ole Opry manager\’s critique after his l954 performance? Or the Beatles listened in 1962 when Decca Recording Company responded, “We don\’t like their sound. Groups of guitars are on the way out.” What if Rudyard Kipling quit writing when the San Francisco Examiner told him, “I\’m sorry, but you just don\’t know how to use the English language.” Or as a struggling artist, Walt Disney took seriously the words of a prospective... Read More

What You Control

January 14th, 2010

Thanks to frequent-flyer points and a vacation club exchange, we spent a week in Hawaii for the cost of a rental car and food. While a fun and relaxing vacation, it was strange to be at an ocean-front Maui resort during peak tourist season, without the tourists. Several restaurants on this forty-acre property were even closed. The bellman who showed us around told us he\’d been working at the resort for eleven years and hadn\’t seen anything like it. “I used to work full-time,” he told us. “Now I\’m on a rotation with sixteen others and lucky to get one day a... Read More

Maybe Scrooge was Right

December 14th, 2009

Thirteen percent. That number should make you pause if you manage staff, lead a group, or own a business. It\’s a number recently released from an on-line survey reported by Reuters. According to Right Management, a subsidiary of Manpower Inc, only thirteen percent of employees surveyed said they “planned to stay in their current positions.” Two-thirds reported they\’re looking to change jobs in 2010, and another twenty-one percent indicated they\’re networking now, just in case. Pent-up frustrations and workplace treatment during the economic downturn were the primary... Read More

The Art of Change

November 11th, 2009

From the iron age to nearly the industrial age, blacksmiths prospered. Villagers needed plows, shovels, iron tires for wagons, nails and tools to build their homes, all of which the blacksmiths forged. They needed their horses and oxen shod and their tools repaired. Being a blacksmith was a sound professional choice. Yet despite flourishing for centuries, this vital profession was all but eliminated in a few generations. Who could envision affordable mass-produced items lining the shelves of big box stores, or anticipate societal changes incomprehensible at the time? How many current professions... Read More

TIME-OUT

October 13th, 2009

When young children misbehave, many parents, teachers and caregivers insist on a time-out. Think how much better your workplace would be if you initiated the same approach. No, not for your boss or coworkers, but for yourself. It\’s hard to be amenable to reason or hear a contrary point of view when we\’re stubbornly clinging to our position. It\’s hard to hear a new idea when the change that\’s being suggested will negatively impact us. And it\’s hard to offer constructive input when we\’re approaching the edge of unreasonableness, backed into a corner or seething... Read More

TWO-SIDED ANSWERS

September 14th, 2009

The room was lovely, the bed inviting, the architecture interesting, and the philosophy appealing. That was my impression as we checked into a newly minted green-hotel in a resort town where we were eager to spend time relaxing. But when we checked out, lovely wasn\’t on my mind. Protective glass on the combined soaking tub/shower looked terrific, but giving a child a bath was impossible; oversized ultra-modern faucets made face-washing without watering the floor an Olympic challenge; and shin-high pointy edges on a platform bed covered by a flowing duvet made room navigation perilous. There... Read More