Tag Archives: success

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personal growth

Personal Growth Is Your Ticket To Workplace Success

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Many people talk about personal growth. Likely, more than eighty percent of those discussing it stick with it long enough to make a significant change.

A lack of luck is often to blame. Yet, most people experience luck often. In reality, how you manage luck, good or bad, will make the biggest difference long-term.

Considering short-run management versus long-run change, are you able to balance both?

Plenty of short-run decisions have an impact on long-run change.

A bowl of ice cream on Saturday evening may feel good while satisfying the short-run. A bowl of ice cream every evening may have some impact on long-run weight management.

When you break it all down, nearly everything you do and the associated outcomes are predictors of what happens long-term.

Personal Growth

Most executives don’t start at the top.

A great car mechanic wasn’t born that way.

The fittest athlete didn’t get fit by laying on the couch all day, every day.

Your level of personal growth seldom just happens. It is a collection across time. A collection of little or nothing never gets very big. Yet a little bit collected often starts to add up.

A picture of a tree in the park, the one in the courtyard at your workplace, or outside your kitchen window. One taken now and one taken five years ago. Things have changed, yet you barely noticed.

Every tiny piece. Every bit of information. Successes, learning opportunities, and even every calorie burnt versus calorie consumed.

One nugget at a time, adding up across days, weeks, months, and years. That is the path to achieving more.

Many people like to focus on salary or money.

Your success isn’t always about what you get paid along the way. What you get paid for it may be stark in comparison to what you become for it.

Bit by bit, drop by drop, season after season, adding a little more across time is the surest way to achieve more.

Growth isn’t an accident.

-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.


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changing methods

Changing Methods Means You’ve Learned

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Has something you’re doing changed? Do you believe that changing methods is a good idea or should you stick to doing exactly what works?

Same old, same old.

It’s a popular phrase and one that is often thrown about the workplace to indicate that people are bored and the energy is stale.

Persistence matters for success. Giving up easily or constantly swapping to a new path may not only be exhausting, it may mean that you lack focus.

On the other hand, sticking to the horse buggy may not only mean a traffic jam for everyone else, but it may also mean that you’re stuck.

Things that have been around for hundreds of years have changed. They may serve a similar purpose but they are probably not exactly the same.

Food, shelter, transportation, they are always changing, and these are just a few of the essentials.

You must change.

Changing Methods

Do you want to repeat the same mistakes over and over? Of course not, so you change it up. Does it interest you to read more, listen more, and watch more so that you learn more? Hopefully, it does.

Everything you do, for work, for pleasure, and for survival and success is based on a repetitive pattern of learning and growth. Staying the same really won’t take you very far. It feels safe and comfortable, but at the same time, it means you’re stuck.

Your job or occupation has changed, maybe noticeably or perhaps ever so slightly.

The business or organization that you work for has changed. The job roles have shifted, and future success will depend upon a fluid approach of learning and changing.

The moment you decide you’re done learning is the same moment you’ll start to decline.

Have an open mind. Change your methods.

-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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personal goals

Personal Goals Start With What You Believe

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What are your personal goals? Get promoted, get healthier, or perhaps secure your financial position? Maybe it is all of those and a whole lot more.

Do you believe in your goals?

Belief is a funny thing. Belief will often come to life based on your surroundings. Are other people in a similar place in life getting promoted? Are people building houses, working out, or starting a garden? What is happening around you?

If everyone in your network attends church on a regular basis, you might decide to attend. If nearly no one does, you might not either. When they believe in a particular political party, you may join their movement, or you may watch from the sidelines.

When people share their values and beliefs and create a lifestyle that surrounds those principles, others may join in.

You may start to believe, or if you already believe, then your beliefs may get reinforced by others believing too.

On a high level, this probably makes sense and resonates with most people.

Do you believe in you?

Is what you are planning to do or accomplish true?

Personal Goals

If you want to take a vacation of a lifetime, build your dream home, or drive a very expensive car will you make it happen? Will you make it come true?

Not all beliefs are true.

There are people who won’t believe what you believe. They may not believe getting a promotion is possible. They may insist weight loss or health gains are just too complicated. And for financial positioning, well, it may be that they believe that is only for the elite, the rich and famous.

Many people work tirelessly for their employer and they do get a promotion. There are plenty who change their eating habits, take a walk, and get better sleep. Financial positioning may not be as much about what you make as it is about what you keep.

All of those are structured by belief.

What you tell yourself or what others tell you will condition what happens next. Belief is often about your community.

Be part of one that contributes to, not distracts you from what you want to happen next.

-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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more education

More Education, Who Needs It?

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Do you need more education? Some people believe that they don’t need education beyond high school, and some even less than that.

Is education really a racket? Some people say it is.

Even Pink Floyd had something to say about education.

There are plenty of high salary people with what some would say is a limited education. Yet, it is probably safe to say that the more educated you become the higher your earning potential.

Is it about Learning?

When we swap out the word education and replace it with learning, things change a little.

One trouble spot is the concept of the quality of what is learned.

Learning how to dodge, weave, and play corporate politics may not be taught in a community college or ivy league business school. You tend to learn it from experience. For better or for worse, that experience often comes from role models.

Duck Dynasty is an American television series. Many view it as the name of a business. Although its true name is Duck Commander.

The Duck Dynasty brand, is an image, a role model, and although ZZ Top may disagree, it is quite possibly the spark that ignited the long-beard trend.

We also have images of what corporate life at Google looks like, what big government looks like in Washington, D.C., and some images of the chillaxed lifestyle of the rich and famous of Miami or Southern California.

There is also a reasonably good chance that you are none of those.

Yet, plenty of people will grow the beard, tote around technology like it is a picture of success, and politic on social media channels like a know-it-all from a prominent urban community.

It’s what they’ve learned or inspire to be.

More Education

You don’t need a formal education to learn how to run a Ponzi scheme. Although some college and university graduates decide to do it. The same may be said about the success of star athletes, business owners, and the Executive Chef.

Learning helps build your character. It shapes decisions that you’ll make.

If you decide to drop out of school and you achieve some success then school may appear to be a waste of time. You made a decision and got results.

If you decide to pursue post-secondary education by earning a certificate, a degree, or multiples of either, and you achieve some success, you may decide that formal education had something to do with it.

All of the decisions you’ll make today and tomorrow will have something to do with what you’ve learned. There is a good chance that as you make your next big decision, you’ll look at the presumed success and failures of your life experiences and your role models.

More learning is never a waste of time.

It becomes part of your character. It isn’t forced, it’s welcomed and appreciated. The moment you decide you don’t need it is likely a moment that you made a decision that will limit everything that happens for you next.

Everyone needs to learn more.

Do they?

Do you?

-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 narratives

Career Narratives Shape What Happens Next

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Is it really a self-fulfilled prophecy? Are you working for a career? Is your career working for you? Consciously or not, career narratives may be shaping your future.

When I go to the meeting today, no one will listen.

This is too expensive; the customer will never go for it.

I’m not getting promoted because no one see’s my value.

If any, or all of those are in your head, you might be limiting your own career.

There are thousands of other examples of the narrative people recite to themselves and the associated outcomes.

That narrative is a prediction of the future. Often a fairly accurate prediction because somehow, people allow it to unfold exactly as it was created in their mind.

There is a good chance it is based on past experiences. Even second hand experiences. Across time, these experiences have a way of stacking. They add up.

Conclusions about career directions may be true or false. Accurate or a complete insecurity.

How it all plays out, is often exactly as you predicted.

Career Narratives

If someone suggests, “You can’t be successful doing that.” You just might believe them. Of course, another route may be to prove them wrong.

The difference then is what is in your head. It is the narrative that you have created or accepted.

Every career has a narrative. It’s built from experiences, learning, and is largely invented. That is, until you bring it to fruition.

Since it is your career, you have the responsibility for its creation.

It is a great story.

If you want it to be.

-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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one chance

Just One Chance To Tell Your Story

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Actually, there are many chances but there is only one first chance. If you had only one chance, what would your story be?

Your resume might be a story. Perhaps you tell a story in the job interview. Your reputation is a story and so are the things that keep your friends interested in what’s next.

Your life is full of stories.

There are the stories that you tell yourself as you start your day, the story in your mind before the meeting, and the story you consider as you check your progress on your goals.

Everyone around you has a story too. Some will listen to yours and some only want to tell their own.

The news media has a story. So does the politician, the financial analyst, and the meteorologist.

For every person what happens next depends on their story.

Perhaps the life lesson is to learn how to listen to your own story.

One Chance for Your Story

It is possible that you could tell a better story? How would that shape what will unfold for you tomorrow? What about overmorrow?

The story that you tell depends on you. If you want a better story can you create one? Do good stories lead to more good stories?

When you care about your story it may be important to consider how you’ll tell it better. What will make it more powerful with greater impact. Will it be a catalyst for others on a similar quest?

If you care about what happens next it might be wise to listen to your own story.

-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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best starts

Best Starts Come From Where You Are At

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Seed money is nice. It gives you a better chance for a stronger start. A head start in the foot race might be nice too. Realistically, the best starts come from recognizing where you are at and getting to where you are going.

Small and large businesses alike spend much energy and resources on carefully crafting their mission and vision. Then they build a brand around it.

It should be true for successful professionals too.

What is your mission? What is your vision?

People often want to highlight the disadvantages. They may not have strengths in certain areas, or what they want to do may not exactly fit with what they need to do.

Great Visualizers

The best athletes visualize their success. They visualize the perfect dive and stroke in swimming. The perfect swing in baseball or golf. And for the track athlete, it’s getting off the blocks perfectly.

Many people talk about great starts. Great starts matter. They’re also conditioned on starting where you are at. In other words, everyone has an individual starting point. Amateurs can’t expect to start at the Pro level.

Visualizing where you are at and where you want to go may lead to a good start.

Where do you belief the best starts come from?

Best Starts

For everyone, in your business or in your career, you have to start at the beginning. Where ever the beginning is for you, that’s where you start.

You can’t expect to start at the top. You can’t expect a head start.

Know and understand your mission. Have a stretchy, yet appropriate vision. Consider things will need a certain amount of fluidity. Not everything is carved in stone, nor is it black and white.

Best starts come from where you are at. They follow your mission and vision.

You’ll get better along the way.

Get started.

-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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book smart

Book Smart, It Only Takes You So Far

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Are you a good reader, a good test taker, or exceptional student? Can you easily memorize the information and spit it back out? Have you been identified with being book smart?

Being book smart isn’t a career, yet neither is your ability to excel when you lack education.

Who Needs Education?

Sure, someone might quickly point out Bill Gates, Michael Dell, or Steve Jobs. Yet, these folks are anything but normal. And certainly, I mean that in a positive and respectful manner.

It seems that the most successful people, whether on their own, or in a workplace career, have something different going on.

The something different is often connected to their drive, their passion, and their persistence.

Chances are great that the best of the best have good study skills. Only, it is not in preparation for the exam.

It’s in preparation for life’s test.

Passionate people work hard. They are interested in the knowledge gain. Some of that knowledge gain may involve knowing where to look, who to ask, or even what relationships they seek to build.

That’s smart.

Memorizing Isn’t Enough

You can memorize the spec, look it up, ask the right people, or perhaps some of all three. Only memorizing it thought doesn’t guarantee you’ll know how to apply it.

In school, many great students have mastered how to study for the test. They are able to memorize and answer the questions exactly how the teacher asks. After all, the teachers success is conditioned by the students achieving good test scores.

Education matters. It matters a great deal. A lack of education is almost guaranteed to not be a sign of being smart.

Maybe more employers should look for passion as a driving factor?

Beyond Book Smart

One measurement of passion should be an interest to learn.

Sure, you may learn something by walking around. Yet, it doesn’t guarantee the ability or interest to become more.

We can learn that a rocket can lift off from the Earths surface, but that doesn’t mean we can build it or replicate it.

Perhaps we can learn that people can accomplish a lot through the shared expertise of the team, but that doesn’t mean we’re good at building teams.

We might also learn the technical spec, yet the only thing we have is the memory of the spec, not the aptitude to solve a problem outside of it.

Interest, passion, and education matter.

Book smart only takes you so far.

-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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future forecast

Future Forecast and the Reality of Accuracy

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What is the future forecast? Do you have a prediction?

Ask around, most people have something to say about what the future will hold. They have a prediction about the fate scheduled for tomorrow or the next day.

Some see opportunities, some see bigger challenges, and some will predict total doom and gloom.

There are parallels to the weather forecast.

When you get it correct:

See, I told you so.

I knew it.

This is exactly what I said would happen.

When you get it wrong there may be a tendency for silence, some withdraw, or keeping a low-profile.

What is your percentage of accuracy?

Future Forecast

Most people are always forecasting the future. Consciously or subconsciously they are making predictions about what will happen next.

Certainly, some things are beyond our control. Yet, in other cases we control our future. Perhaps, it is a little of both.

What would happen if you put a good plan into action? What would happen if you followed the plan, monitored it, and kept a fluid approach making changes as necessary?

Imagine if everyone just dug in, dug deep, and put forward the best that they could possibly do?

Is the underdog ever a hero? Yes.

Do people sometimes get the positive benefit of a little luck? Yes.

Are there opportunities to create the future you have been imagining? Yes.

Sometimes the best thing you can do is simply work towards the goal.

A strange thing often happens.

As you work towards the goal you realize that the gap isn’t as big as it once was. You realize that through effort and hard work the future has started to shape itself.

Don’t lose sight of what you can build today and tomorrow. You just might create the reality of accuracy.

See, I told you so.

-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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fast pivot

Fast Pivot and Your Ability to Stop on a Dime

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Are you doing the fast pivot? Are you able to stop on a dime, start on a dime, or change direction on a dime?

The origin of the idiom, “Stop on a dime.” is unclear. It is different from, “a dime a dozen,” or, “at a drop of a dime.”

Some searches seem to date these phrases as least as far back as the 1920’s.

Stopping on a dime means to stop quickly, or perhaps precisely.

Considering the Worldwide pandemic that has halted the economies of every first world country what will change? What is going to be different tomorrow, or the next day, as compared with just a month or two ago?

Recognized change always feels like it is happening fast. Unrecognized change on the other hand, is a much slower pace.

A tree grows almost unknowingly. Grass in the lawn is a little more rapid. Seasons change, but always with a signal or sign.

The current situation requires businesses to change quickly. Change will be apparent and associated with some discomfort.

Fast Pivot

Sure, somethings will be similar. Most of our cars will have four wheels, we’ll acquire food from a market, and humans will wear clothing appropriate for the climate.

Many businesses will be different though. How people come together for performing work has already changed in many sectors.

Technology will lead the way and physical space will widen or distance.

The most successful businesses haven’t really stopped. They are working fast in an attempt to preserve jobs, keep customers, and survive an unexpected situation.

Hats off to all of the essential workers who are helping everyone survive.

And for the other for profits and non-profits, for the CEO, Executive Director, and the entrepreneur, it is time for the fast pivot.

You may have been forced to stop on a dime, but the playing field has been leveled and the new beginning has already started.

-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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