Category Archives: Professional Development

Thinking with MLK

~ Here’s an MLK quote you don’t see every day. Food for thought in business and in life!

~ “Nothing pains some people more than having to think.”

think MLK quote

Happy Birthday Dr. King!

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9 Tips For Better Communication #MondayMotivation

~ 9 Ways to be a Positive Communicator. Thanks to Jon Gordon for Sharing.

~ 1. Shout Praise, Whisper Criticism – This phrase comes from the original Olympic Dream Team and Detroit Pistons coaches Chuck Daily and Brendan Suhr. They won NBA Championships and an Olympic Gold medal with a lot of talent and great communication. They gained the trust of their players and built winning teams by praising in public and constructively criticizing in private. Shouting praise means you recognize someone in front of their peers and whispering criticism means you coach them to get better. Both build better people and teams.

~ 2. Smile More – When you share a real smile it not only produces more serotonin in your brain but in the brain of the recipient of your smile. Just by smiling at someone you are giving them a dose of serotonin, an anti-depressant. Never underestimate the power of a smile. As a positive communicator you have the power to make someone feel better just by smiling.

~ 3. Don’t Complain – When you complain you lose power, effectiveness and credibility as a communicator and leader. Most of all complaining is toxic and sabotages you and your team. Complaining is like vomiting. Afterwards you feel better but everyone around you feels sick. I know it’s a gross analogy but you’ll never forget it.

~ 4. Encourage – Truett Cathy said, “How do you know if a man or woman needs encouragement? If they are breathing.” We all need encouragement and positive communicators encourage and inspire others to do more and become more than they ever thought possible. Great communicators are great encouragers.

~ 5. Spread Positive Gossip – Instead of sharing negative gossip, be the kind of communicator who spreads positive news about people. My college lacrosse teammates Mike Connelly and Johnny Heil are famous for this. Whenever you talk to them they are always praising our mutual friends. “Did you hear how awesome so and so is doing? Their kids are doing great!” They never say a negative word about anyone. They always spread the positive news and the best part is that you know when you are not around they are likely sharing something positive, not negative about you.

~ 6. Sometimes You Have to Listen More and Talk Less – Positive communicators don’t just talk. They listen. They ask questions and really listen. Research shows that when people feel like they are seen and heard there is a moistening in the eyes and yet in 90% of our conversations there is no moistening in the eyes. Positive communicators make others feel important by listening to them and truly hearing what they have to say.

~ 7. Welcome Feedback – Positive communicators also listen to and welcome ideas and suggestions on how they can improve. They don’t fear criticism. They welcome it knowing it makes them better. They send a clear signal to their team, customers, coaches, etc. that they are always willing to learn, improve and grow. Positive communicators say “I’m open. Make me better. Let’s get better together.”

~ 8. Celebrate Success – Instead of focusing on what went wrong each day, positive communicators focus on what went right. They celebrate their successes, even the small ones, knowing that small wins lead to big wins.

~ 9. Give High Fives, Handshakes, Pats on the Back, Fist Bumps and Hugs When Appropriate – Positive communication isn’t just verbal. It’s also physical. Several studies have demonstrated the benefits of physical contact between doctors and patients, teachers and students and professional athletes. For example in one study the best NBA teams were also the touchiest (high fives, pats on the back, hugs). In a world where physical touch has become taboo because of misuse and abuse we must remember that it is a way we humans communicate naturally and is very powerful and beneficial when done appropriately with good intention. Personally I’m a fist bumper and a hugger. When I meet people at speaking engagements I give them a choice. Bump or Hug. Whichever they are more comfortable with is great with me.

 

Excellent Read for Enterpreneurs or anyone trying something new!

Tim Ferris author of 4 Hour Workweek has a great blog post about the emotional roller coaster ride taken by Start Up Founders or any Entrepreneur, and how to handle the different stages. I found it enlightening and helpful!

Have an adventurous and profitable week!

PS Here’s another great read from Tim that reminded me about the “Hell Yeah!” theory I had gotten away from.  And Entrepreneurs be sure to read this too!

rollercoaster 1

#Business and Life Advice from the Grateful Dead #Dead50

Grateful Dead closed out their 50 Year Career in Chicago last night at Soldier Field (a mere 2 blocks from my home). It was the same location as their last show with Jerry Garcia in 1995. I’ve never been a big DeadHead but have appreciated their music, longevity, experimentation and also their business sense. They were one of the first bands to have their own record label and sell their own tickets, and everyone knows they are kings of merchandising and brand building. They changed the concert touring business as well with their traveling band of fans, long improvisational shows, and allowing fans to tape their shows starting decades ago.
Along with Led Zeppelin they were one of the rock bands that did the most to shape the music and concert business.
Over the weekend I tweeted some of my favorite Grateful Dead lyrics that also can be taken as good self improvement advice in business and life.
Fare Thee Well!

once in a while gdead

maybe you find direction gdead

gdead one man gathers

gdead silver mine

long distance runner c

are you kind gdead

To learn more about the Grateful Dead’s business innovations and lessons, read this short article from guy who wrote a whole book on it.  Or here’s another one.

What a long, strange trip it’s been.

–TTBG

 

Business and Life Wisdom from Mom

My Mom kept it simple when we were growing up, but I still think of the things she said to guide us daily.  I still turn to her sayings in my business and personal life.

~ “Be considerate!” ~ I strive to think about what I am about to say or do and how others will react and feel.  This is a healthy version of being “PC.”

~ “I’m going to count to 3…” ~ I’ve learned to stop and think before speaking or taking action and I’ve never been sorry after doing so.

~ “Tomorrow is another day.” ~ I strive to let the grudges and failures of today not pollute my future attitudes and action.

~ “Mind your P’s and Q’s!” ~ In my lifelong involvement in  bar/restaurant hospitality industry, I’ve learned it’s a nickel and dime business where failure is often caused by ignoring a lot of little things.  I think that’s true of many other endeavors, both business and professional.

~ “It’s just one of those things.” ~ I have a need to analyze and understand everything, and I have to make peace with the reality that sometimes stuff just happens, and people act in ways that don’t make sense.

~ “We’ll see…” ~ Mom’s version of “maybe,” in response to those endless kid requests.  She taught me to be tactful in controlling requests, but staying open to possibilities.

~ “MOB!” (Mind your own business) ~ This is one I use every day and it saves me time, money, and aggravation.

~ “Don’t be unpleasant.” ~ Smile and the world smiles with you. Or as I say to Clients in the hospitality business, “Smile and Make Money!”

~ “Go outside and play!” ~ Mom had very tough rules limiting media screen time. Of course there was only the TV screen back then.  But growing up we “watched” much less than our friends, as Mom would kick us out the door to go expend some energy and grow our imagination.  Today, I’m aware that passively consuming too much media is binging on mental junk food.  I try to model behavior and spread the word to friends and associates that spending time with “talking heads,” talk radio, reality TV and negative web sites is mind pollution.

~ “Do unto others, as you would have others do unto you!” ~ The Golden Rule, present in every major faith, was big for my Mom and it remains the ultimate piece of Life Wisdom

So here’s my favorite Mother’s Day Song from Junior: “Mama Used to Say.”

And Here’s some more thoughts on what some “old school” mom’s taught us kids.

Happy Mothers Day!

 

 

Jim Carrey: My Waiter Job

“Doing what you don’t want is the way to what you do want, on occasion.”
“Compromise is the way to get to what you want.”
“I would never have made it without going back and doing what I didn’t want to do.”
Words of wisdom and an inspiring video from Jim Carrey.

7 Myths Held By Self-Improvement and HR/Management Gurus

7 Myths Held By Self-Improvement and HR/Management Gurus

(1) Overworked managers have not already performed 80/20 elimination of unnecessary tasks.
(2) Customers and employees are rational and fair-minded.
(3) Co-workers will not exploit your work/life balance to advance their own career.
(4) Companies have money to add staff for any reason other than increased customer demand for goods/services the company sells.
(5) You don’t need fear in management.
(6) Bosses allow workers and managers the freedom to re-prioritize.
(7) Customers are willing to pay more for good service.

Reality check.  LinkedIN writers, I’m talking to you!  Wishing all the best to everyone in the corporate world – I’ve been there!  Cheers – Tim