Sunday, July 27, 2014

Why don’t people think logically?

In September 1995, whole India was mass mesmerized  and was offering the milk to Lord Ganesha.

Then in 2006, Hundreds of people flocked to Mahim beach after reports of sea water turning sweet spread all over the city.

Again in somewhere in 2012, Jesus wept and people made the crowd to get the tears in bottle.

And there are many more news.  

There are people who invest  their hard earned money in the Ponzi schemes expecting huge ROI, which is always impossible. There believe on stories and go behind people who are much more smarter than them. Same thing is in multi-level marketing and try to become rich immediately.  They don’t think logically, why anybody will buy their product (say magnet mattress of Rs. 1 lacs)? Why somebody will buy products which are almost 10 time costlier than other products.
If you go in detail, you will come to know that only promoters have become wealthy on the money of investors.     

Then, there are incidences, where people believe on fishing mails like lottery, job and fake password change notification from banks and end up losing their money.

People who are victims are not illiterate, most of the times, they are educated including doctors, engineers, lawyers, teachers etc. What make them to believe on such mad and weird things.  
The question is why they don’t think logically? Why don’t they ask questions on the authenticity? Such frauds and scams are nonsense and people believe this nonsense.  In essence, people believe nonsense because it serves a psychological purpose. Everybody wants to be rich very fast, want to be successful.  In this process, they don’t even think on what is right or wrong for them.

It is always better to show a simple common sense and think logically on such matters.

What do you think? 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Words which you should avoid…transform your communication..

“He directly targeting me while speaking. I agree that I may be wrong, but this is not the way to deal with people. After all we are not children.” One of the employee was complaining about his Manager.

“What he spoke?” I asked him..

“He uses the words always, you did it. You disappointed me.. you make my job difficult etc. etc.”

I realized that people may aware on the uses of words but they may not be aware how to use the word. Much of our communication is done in words. We use words to communicate ourselves to ourselves, as well as to others. Meaning may be the same but it is how you put it. We are dealing with the adults and respect should be the core value. People make mistakes, but when you directly blame them, they feel hurt.  

Worlds should be used very carefully. More important things in how you use your word. Empowering communication can create a shift in your belief system when practiced over a period of time. To make the communication more influencing, you need to carefully use the pattern of the language.

You can use following strategy to make your communication more positive and effective..

Talk in “I” statements.

When you find something wrong with the people, use “I” statement.  It empowers you to express yourself instead of blaming others. For example if you find somebody very arrogant, use “I find you arrogant ” instead of using “You are arrogant.”
Communicate ‘”what is” instead of ‘”what is not”.
If you are unhappy with something, instead of “I feel unhappy” say, I feel sad.”

Drop the word “”cant” and change it to “”wont”.

There is never a cant.  You have the choice to do something. You can do but it is your choice not to do it. You always have a choice. If you say,  I cant come tonight for the party  because I have to take care of my son.” this is just not true.
Reality is “You wont come tonight, because you choose to baby-sit.”

Drop the word  “problem/issue”  from your vocabulary.

I have seen the people who are always in the problem. In small things they will see issues and problems.  “Boss I have one issue.” If somebody comes and asks me. I say, ”very  good, now solve it.”
Every problem or issues is the opportunity of something., hence use challenge or opportunity instead.

A problem means that you are a victim of the situation. A challenge or an opportunity means that you choose to face the situation and grow beyond it.
Drop the word “but”.

Most of the people, use the word but…
I can do it …but I can’t….
Stop compromising your positive statements with a but: I had a wonderful day, but...

Here you enjoyed the day, and spoiling it by just adding but…you also putting the negative shade to the communication…
Did you notice, what statement I used… I used “And” instead of “But” in above statement…

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Six Thinking Hats

The main difficulty in thinking is confusion. --Edward de Bono

Are we thinking clearly and effectively on how to handle opportunities as well as conflicts? Do we know what form of thinking is the most appropriate in each situation? How can we improve the way we think as a team? There are different ways of thinking that can help us analyse situations and reach decisions in the most productive way and with the least conflict.

We seem to be jugglers in life, striving to handle the information coming to us at an incredible speed. Our emotions are set off by thousands of stimuli. We try to reason logically about what is happening or could happen to us; we have hopeful visions, pessimistic projections and creative ideas. Also, as we face critical situations at work, we may be thinking about our children, our homes and our families. It's often difficult to focus.

The Six Thinking Hats
Developed by Dr. Edward de Bono, the Six Thinking Hats® is a simple and effective parallel thinking process that helps people become more productive, focused, and mindfully involved. You learn to separate thinking into six distinct modes, which are identified with their own metaphorical "hat." By mentally wearing and switching "hats," you change your mode of thinking.

The Six Thinking Hats will help you increase the constructive output from meetings and decrease meeting duration; explore each situation or problem and generate alternatives that go beyond obvious solutions; and use "parallel thinking" techniques to avoid adversarial thinking and encourage ideas.

To Ensure the Method Works
For the method to work, intentions must lead to performance. In one of my workshop for my employees, I share with my learning partners the phrase “intention without action does not create transformation.”
No matter how great our intentions are, if we don’t move in the right direction, our best aspirations to improve our ways of thinking are useless. De Bono asserts that intention is the first step, but we need structures to carry that intention into action and transform it into results. We need structures for our thinking process to be become as productive as possible. That’s where the six "hats" come in:

White Hat – Information: it is neutral and objective. It deals with objective facts and figures. “Do not interpret. Consider only the facts, please.” It's "pure intellect."

Red Hat – Intuition, emotions, feelings: it suggests rage, fury, passion. It provides the emotional point of view, what the person wearing this hat feels about what is being analysed. “I don’t like what I'm seeing.” “Why?” “It doesn't matter, I just don’t like it.” It's the "beating heart."

Black Hat – Criticism, carefulness, pessimism: it is sad and negative. It covers the negative aspects of why something cannot be done. “This doesn't fit. This won’t work because…” It's the "devil’s advocate."

Yellow Hat – Benefits, values, profits: it is happy and positive. It optimistically covers hope, stimulating positive thought, finding the advantages of the suggested idea or situation being analysed. “I like this because…” It's the "bright sun."

Green Hat – Creativity, alternatives, and possibilities: it is vegetation and fertile growth. In our Indian culture, it is hope and abundance. It suggests the creativity and new ideas about the situation being analysed. “What if we…” “Hey, let’s do this!” It's the "fertile tree."

Blue Hat – Control of the process: it's cold and, like the sky, it's over and above everything. It deals with control and organization of the thought process, as well as the use of the other hats. “Hey, let’s take it step by step. Let’s not get confused.” It's the "orchestra conductor."

The Six-Thinking-Hats method can help you develop your personal thinking processes. However, it is particularly useful to ensure your team becomes more productive when analysing and deciding strategies and possibilities.

Use these ideas to ensure your thinking and the thinking of your team become increasingly clear, creative and productive.

(For more details please contact Edward de Bono's authorised certified trainer)

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Engaging with Fast Trackers

Fast trackers are ambitious. They are hungry for growth. They are calibrated in top box of high performance and high potential. There is a correlation between their potential and ambition. Whenever they are with your company they will add value to the business and they need frequent changes. Hence, their engagement is crucial. 

Most of the time companies hesitate to take risk on fast trackers. If you tag somebody as fast tracker, your next step should be their development plan and action plan for engaging them. I have few suggestions for keeping these guys (read girls as well) engaged in your organization. 

Compensation: Compensation isn't everything! Yes. True, but compensation is also important. You should have your compensation philosophy where you can position your fast tracker and high potential at specific percentile. Not necessary you pay above the market, but there should be reasonably good positioning as compared to your regular talent. 

Development: Follow 70+20+10 rule. 70% development happens through on the job assignment, project assignment. You need to put your employees in the water directly. 20% development happens through coaching and 10% development through training programmes. Make the development plan based on this logic. You need to create it with concrete deliverables with timelines. Don't hesitate to put the person on the project, assignment whenever you find it for this group. Coaching always takes back seat. The issues are with time investment required by bosses and seniors. If company is really serious about the development of these guys, seniors have to take time for coaching them. You may take the external help of an expert coach, but internal coaches are always beneficial. 

Mentoring: Assign mentor from top management like board member, management team, other functional leader or any senior member. Employee would have priorities where he would like to take the help of mentor on development areas. 

Define the next career step: Most of the time, line managers are unaware on what should be communicated on the next career move for the employee. When you identify the talent, you should have the plan for this. It is ok, if you don't have next vacancies but at least possible move is always motivating for the employee. Whenever possible, try to define the career move and place the candidate whenever you find opportunities. 

Long term incentive: I am sure, now every company has short term incentives like variable pay or performance bonus, but do you have long term incentive plan? ESOP or some other creative ways of rewards are necessary to engage the employees who are critical to your business. 

Education: First assumption for identifying fast trackers is that they are future leaders. The question is how are you developing them as a leader and also improve their business acumen. Educate them in general management. Executive MBA or leadership programmes with top colleges is the top most motivation for these guys. 

Shadowing of top management or functional leader: The most appropriate way to develop & also engage these guys is assigning them to shadow top management or any other functional leaders. By doing this they will understand the complexity of the job and skills sets required to perform the leadership jobs. Further, they will also get the exposure at top management level. Visibility and appreciation from top people always increase the engagement. You also need to be very critical while assessing this high potential and fast trackers. Hence, Identification of this talent group is always critical...

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