Tag Archives: choices

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delayed decisions

Delayed Decisions Can Become a Bad Habit

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Do you hurry to make decisions? Is your pause something that becomes a habit? Do you feel more accurate after strategically waiting? Delayed decisions can become a bad habit.

Cool Off, Slow Down

We’ve learned about the cooling off period. If we are making a big purchase, a major life choice, or something of very high risk, a delayed decision seems appropriate.

Confidence, or a lack of, may drive how rapidly we make decisions.

Across time we may develop a learned pattern that the act of delaying decisions keeps our options open, provides more clarity, and allows our emotions to calm down. All of which may be true, and sometimes good, but is it required?

Do you have a habit of delaying decisions?

Delayed Decisions

In 2006, you may not have heard of Facebook, when you did, you may have decided to wait to join. By 2010, if you wanted engagement on Facebook, your advantages were already lessening. Sure, there were still many more people to join, but Facebook was already contemplating strategy for controlling and securing their platform.

If you wanted to be a Facebook Influencer, early adoption was a good strategy.

When we jump in early, there is often an advantage. This is true with many decisions. First on the bus, first to the fresh buffet, or first in line for the Black Friday electronics deals. All may be advantageous.

There is a bell curve of value connected with change. Decisions drive change.

As humans we are creatures of habit. We often launch, analyze, learn, change, and repeat. Sometimes we label this as a fluid process. Fluidity can be good.

At the same time if our habits drive us to hesitate, wait, slow down, and analyze more, we just might miss the bus.

Careful consideration is always valuable. Procrastination on deciding can become a bad habit.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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workplace headache

Workplace Headache and Other Ailments

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Do you have a workplace headache? Is there something or someone gnawing at you?

We’ve heard somebody say it, “I have a migraine.” Migraines are no joke and could be a serious condition.

Metaphorically, are there some pains around your workplace?

Beyond Control

Any time we have people working together we’re going to have different personalities, different values, ideas, and beliefs. There will always be different ways to approach problems and different moods depending on what is happening in our lives.

In addition to the interpersonal circumstances we’ll also probably have work we like to do, and work we despise doing.

We know there will be good days and bad days.

Can you control your situation? In some cases, probably, yes. In other cases, probably not so much.

We can’t do much about the traffic jam, the road construction, or a traffic accident.

Pouring rain, bright sunshine, high temperatures or freezing cold. No wind, light wind, or whipping wind, nothing we can really do.

The personalities of our valued customers or coworkers, they are beyond our control.

Workplace Headache

If we choose to allow it, we have a lot of workplace ailments. Personalities, values, and attitudes, not much we can do unless it is our job to help others with their behaviors.

We can choose to not let a traffic jam, bad weather, or different personalities ruin our chance at productivity.

There is a job to do, either way. What happens next is based on our own decisions.

We can choose to acknowledge our headaches, or move forward perhaps forgetting that we have them.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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buying choices

Buying Choices Every Customer Makes

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What choices do you make when you are shopping? New shoes, a dress or a shirt, or perhaps a new car, what do you decide? Buying choices can be challenging.

I’m thinking about an ice cream sundae.

This smartphone is probably outdated, what are the newest features in phones?

My car has been paid off for two-years, maybe I’ll get a new one.

When a hot new technology is introduced the first brand to bring it market has an advantage. The buyers only need to decide if they will buy, they don’t really have choices about brand.

Competition Can Be Good

In many places, there is a gas station and convenience store on each side of the street. At the exit of the highway, to the left and to the right there are food options. When you find a TGI Friday’s you may also notice nearby a Ruby Tuesday.

Certainly, there may be many reasons for this. One competitor may be trying to beat the other, show their dominance, become the best. Run the other out of town.

On the other hand, we may wonder if it would be better to be the only place in town?

Buying Choices

In many buying situations the buyer is making two initial choices.

The first decision is if they will buy. They may want the ice cream sundae but they have to decide if it is within their caloric allowance.

Competition sometimes answers the question the first question. When we see a McDonalds to our left, and across the street, to the right, a Burger King, we may now accept the if, we only have to decide which.

Two competing gas stations at the highway may assume the if has been answered. Buyers are exiting, now they’ll decide which one they’ll choose.

Competition sometimes means there is only one question left to answer.

Selling the idea is sometimes the biggest hurdle.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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getting things done

2 Paths for Getting Things Done

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How do we get things done in the workplace? Should we push people, push systems, and use authority? Are you getting things done?

Organizational culture is driving what happens in your workplace. Is the culture supportive, or is it us against them?

Which Path?

One thought is that the authoritarian approach guides what happens next, or else, nothing happens. Without authority, without pushing, without using people as a tool, nothing happens. People will do little or nothing, they’ll wait.

This is the concept of, “because I said so.” This should beg a question though. The question becomes, “Is that the culture of leadership?” Unlikely.

Another pathway suggests that potential exists in everyone. Everyone can and should contribute. Instead of thinking about tackling work or challenges with an iron fist, we instead consider that properly empowered people will figure it out together.

This path believes that everyone has talent. This is how skills are developed, talent is grown, and leaders are made.

How will leadership utilize this resource?

Getting Things Done

One path ignites ownership, creates buy-in, and establishes responsibility. It is a natural system for accountability. It is an opportunity to recognize the potential that is in everyone and it highlights the potential of the team.

This culture pulls employee teams into action. There really isn’t a reason for push. Compelled by determination and responsibility teams will achieve.

In this system empowerment is the driver. It is a good way to get things done.

The other path suggests you wait to get picked. Dominance is about authority. Judgment of people happens based on their history, not the possibility for the future. Do as I say, not as I do. You’re never paid to think.

Every culture has a choice. Every choice metaphorically mortars another brick in the culture.

Make good choices because it is not only how things will get done, it is also how things will get built.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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career choices

Career Choices and Navigating the Unexpected

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Largely, the decisions we make and the choices we see are based on our expectations. Are there other options? What are your career choices? What will you do when you, or an unfavorable circumstance, signals it is time for something different?

Career Choices

Career choices often don’t feel like they are our own. Very early, the influences of our parents, relatives, and other more seasoned adults often influence our path. It feels like it wasn’t really our choice.

Once on a career path sometimes the unexpected derails our trajectory, again, feeling like it wasn’t our choice. There are life events, world events, and economic events that condition outcomes. Perhaps, none of them are our choice.

Where you find yourself at currently doesn’t mean that is where you’ll stay. This is true if you are excitedly happy, it’s true if your path has encountered a roadblock, or worse, you’ve crashed.

What should you do? What are the choices?

Certainly, the first thought may be that none of your possibilities are the happiest place to be right now. Perhaps none of the options you see are perfect. They may not seem easy, or even feel like they represent positive momentum.

Opportunities and options may not always be comfortable. They involve a shift, a change, and certainly may not be ideal.

Navigating Options

Make a list. Type it up, write it down, journal about it, you decide, but get the options laid out. These are the possibilities you have right now. Let it sink in a while. Sleep on it, don’t jump too fast but don’t let procrastination allow you to avoid it.

Next, and this is the big step, consider all your options based on future possibilities, not the anchors you’re dragging around from the past.

Stop considering the time that may feel wasted, the energy spent, or the hard-earned dollars burnt.

What option offers you the best future, right now?

Get started. Where you are at, or even where you are headed next doesn’t mean that is where you’ll stay.

-DEG

Do you need help navigating a career change? Coaching may help, contact me.

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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career lane

Career Lane, Should You Stay In It?

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People often suggest, “Stay in your lane.” Should you stay in your career lane, make a shift, or be wider, broader, and demonstrate many skills?

Occasionally I will catch a dog show on TV. They’ll use words like, best in class, best of breed, or best in show.

What does it take to be at the top of the group? What about your personal best? Who is the competition?

About Numbers

How can you get promoted, get selected for an interview or become the successful candidate?

Let’s assume you are in sales. What is your goal? To achieve the top three or five percent of your entire team? To be number one? Out of how many?

Getting to the top five percent would mean being number one or number two, out of forty. The bigger the field gets, the more people you must rise above.

Competition

Competition to get selected for an interview and get the job can be brutal. Our digital age means the number of competitors is usually large.

People may think, “Maybe my career shouldn’t be in sales, but it could be sales related. I can apply myself to more than one area.”

The thought is when we broaden our scope, we’ve just created more chances. The irony is, doing this increases the competition, it dilutes your focus, and has made getting selected as a best in show even harder.

Career Lane

Making a career change is fine. I’ve done it three times across a thirty plus year career.

What is important is to pick a lane. Stick with it long enough to make a proper evaluation. Be consistent and stay focused.

Best of breed is easier than best in show.

You can be a big fish in a small pond. If you decide to jump into the ocean is it an entirely new game.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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magic marketing

Magic Marketing for Business, Career, or Life

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It often seems like more should be better. More coffee, more dessert, or more menu options. How are sales? Are you satisfied with your career or life choices? Do you need more of something? Magic marketing could be required.

It is funny how our first approach to solving many problems is to do something more.

Is More Better?

In the workplace, when teams believe they have communication problems they often suggest more communication.

When we need more sales, we often contemplate how to increase the budget for more advertisement.

If we aren’t getting where we want to be in our career we think about more skills, more credentials, or just more job opportunities.

Sometimes this logic is known as the spray and pray approach. While I’m not sure of the exact origin of spray and pray, the analogy often described is the farmer spraying pesticides all over the field and praying that it keeps the insects away.

Another common analogy is the Chinese restaurant menu. Hundreds of options, so many that you don’t know what to choose.

More options, choices, people, jobs, careers, skills, customers, and products, none of these in more quantity may create the outcome you desire.

Magic Marketing

Is there such a thing as magic marketing?

Marketing is sometimes counterintuitive. People dream of that place where the lines of supply and demand, opportunities and sales, and job openings with applicants perfectly intersect.

In all these cases, more is not necessarily better. One job opening with the right applicant is perfect. A menu with three choices may be better than a menu with thirty-three choices.

Position your business marketing, your career pursuits, or nearly anything in life on not being more, but being better.

Magic marketing is about focus, not spray and pray.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Next decision

Consider How You Will Make Your Next Decision

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We decide on things every day. What we’ll wear, eat, or do. How we’ll interact, if we’ll smile, and if we’ll take out the garage. Bigger decisions feel more challenging. How will you make your next decision?

It may come down to your list. The list you have floating around in your mind.

Our complex brain power often has us evaluating circumstances and situations through two possible narratives.

Good Narrative

One narrative is optimistic. It is the consideration of things that could go right. We reflect on possibilities, good fortune, and that it may just be our time.

We have faith and believe. In this case, at this time, luck just may be on our side. We’re due. In fact, we’re overdue.

We decide that we’ll focus on our advantages, who we can tap in our network, and we’ll see the inspirational stories flash through our mind.

By choice, we will anchor to the positive.

However, there is another narrative. It is the other side of the coin.

The Other Narrative

Any obstacles or past roadblocks will be strongly present in our vision. We’ll think more about a friend who failed, had bad luck, and the hardship and agony of things that don’t work out.

We’ll be reminded of the criticism that was on our performance review last year. The door that slammed before we could enter, and the goofy slip of the tongue that we believe cost us forward momentum once before.

By choice we’ll see the list of all the lucky people. Only we aren’t on it. We’ll choose to recite and focus that their luck is at the expense of our own.

We’ll recall the time that someone struck out at us, gave us the shaft, and made us feel like less.

Next Decision

We decide on things every day. The choices you make today will be linked to your narrative.

When you feel the big decision, have some doubt, or your instincts are kicking in. You’ll think about it over and over again.

Be aware of your narrative. Make your next decision, a good one.

-DEG

Originally posted on December 18, 2018, last updated on November 5, 2019.

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.


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two career paths

Two Career Paths, Which Is Yours?

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If you had a choice which path would you choose? It is a question that many of us ponder each day. Not always consciously, but we’re working on it in the background. There are at least two career paths, which one are you on?

Sometimes the problem is that there is a goal in mind, but the path, plan, or process remains elusive.

Become the manager of the department.

Get the advanced degree in my field and pivot. 

Find a job doing the work I love.

Two Career Paths

The first path is simple. Put in some effort, land a job, do the work, and see where things go. Sometimes this is a career. It is easy to go through the motions each day.

Good effort at work. Enjoy a little free time here and there. Spend time with the kids. Have a hobby or take a vacation.

It isn’t your dream job, but it is work. It doesn’t pay what you want, but you are surviving. Suddenly weeks turn into months and months to years.

It’s a job and you’re doing alright. Life rolls on.

The second path is different. It has purpose. It may include a journey down the first path, but there is a different kind of objective. The objective is to use the first path to get to the second path.

Career Strategy

If you have a goal, you need a plan. When you have a goal and a plan, you need to execute. As you execute you must compare outcomes to timelines and milestones. Adjust, and move forward. Failure to do any of this puts you back on the first path.

Many will suggest it all depends on how bad you want it.

I would suggest that the recipe for success also includes commitment, discipline, and self-confidence. You’ll need to add in accountability and belief to get the best flavor.

You can let your career happen to you, or you can make your career work for you. Neither choice is wrong. Just remember, it is a choice.

What path are you on?

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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accelerate forward

Accelerate Forward or Race To The Bottom

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I love mornings. Every day is a new chance. It is a clear slate, an open path, and full of new opportunity. Each day people and business ventures will make a choice to accelerate forward or race to the bottom. What is your choice?

Bottom Racers

Some people get it wrong. They believe that louder, angrier, and meaner, is the way to move forward. It creates attention, makes people look, and temporarily causes them listen.

When we approach an opportunity, assertion is acceptable and is often appreciated. Aggression on the other hand, may cause action and short-term influence, but for the long-haul, aggression is usually not so attractive.

Aggressive behaviors, poor decisions made in haste, and strike backs to people, clients, and anything in the path are not flattering. In fact, even when passion or support for something you believe in takes over, it is not forward motion. It is a race to the bottom.

Accelerate Forward

Forward momentum is hard to stop. For most of us we are lucky for that. As people we’ll often engage with the wrong approach. We’ll inappropriately use tactics that feel like threats, and words that drive fear.

The best way to accelerate forward is to focus forward. Saying we are positive while we recite negative emotions is not forward motion. It is a race to the bottom.

The bottom is not desirable for most. It represents a change that leaves people exhausted and with their confidence shattered. Worse, their spirit is emotionally torn.

It’s interesting that it all begins with choice. A choice for what we’ll say, a choice for where and how we’ll engage, and a choice to accelerate forward or race to the bottom.

Accelerating forward is not shallow, it is a deeper path. It makes it much harder to get to the bottom.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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