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Category: Strategy

How to Boost Productivity During the Dog Days of Summer

Filed under: Attitude, Behavior in the Workplace, Distractions, Focus, Good Habits, Organization, Productivity, Quick Tips, Strategy

You may have loved your job when you started, but it’s not unusual to get in a rut. If you’re experiencing burnout, changing your mindset can bypass it, says Daniel M. Cable, author of Alive aWork: The Neuroscience of Helping Your People Love What They Do, during his interview with Stephanie Vozza of Fast Company.

“Our brains are not wired for routine and repetition at work,” he says. “Disengagement isn’t a motivation problem; it’s a biological one.”

Cable was a professor at the University of North Carolina when he says he lost his zest for his own job and slowly descended into boredom. After being diagnosed and treated for Hodgkin lymphoma, his perspective changed, and he found a sense of gratitude for his job. He stumbled on research about the part of the brain called the ventral striatum, also called the “seeking system,” and its role in being your best self.

“This part of our brain urges us from the time we’re babies to explore what we don’t know,” he says. “Little kids can be given an awesome toy with noises and buttons and they’ll be really into it for a week or few days. Then they find something else that hadn’t seen before, like car keys, and they find that way more interesting. It wasn’t because the thing is cool; it’s because the thing is new.”

When we succumb to these urges, our brain delivers dopamine to reward us and that makes us feel more alive, and the same thing can happen at work, says Cable, currently a professor of organizational behavior at London Business School.

“When we’re in the rut of routine for the 502nd time, this part of the brain shuts off,” says Cable. “Your brain is saying, ‘You’re better than this. We’re not built of this. We’re built for bigger things.’ Then the brain stops the release of dopamine, which makes it seem not only boring but that it takes forever.”

There are three ways you can trigger your brain release dopamine, and get out of your rut, says Cable.

1. Play to your strengths

Identify your signature strengths and the impact you can have by using them on a daily basis. “How can you bring value to the team by using your unique strength?” asks Cable.

When he started tapping into his strength—humor—Cable says he regained an appreciation for his job. “It made me feel good and I saw my students lean in when I used humor,” he says. “As a professor, it was something unique to me. I decided to bring it when I teach class instead of leaving it at home.”

Think of your job as a flexible vehicle and determine how you can bring your strength to it.

2. Be willing to experiment

Avoid the risk of routine by shaking things up. Cable decided to develop new classes instead of teaching the same class over and over.

“A sales manager who was promoted and never got a chance to get out in the field might start going into the field again to talk to clients,” suggests Cable. “It’s just a way to refresh and learn new things.”

Activate that seeking system by going outside of your comfort zone, suggests Cable.

3. Tap into purpose

Finally, analyze cause and effect in your role. We all want to see the impact of our actions, says Cable. Leaders can help employees personalize the purpose of work by providing direct conversations with the people who use work as well as internal decision makers.

“Try to think about the story you want to tell yourself about why you do your job,” says Cable.

You can read the rest of the article on Fast Company.

Market Insights Report: 2018 Job Satisfaction Survey and Salary Analysis

Filed under: Career Advice, Job Market, Research, Strategy, Thought Leadership

The Solomon Page Market Insights Report: 2018 Job Satisfaction Survey and Salary Analysis is now available for download. Get your copy here.

This is the inaugural study of this scope for Solomon Page—and we are very proud to be sharing it with you. Solomon Page has been a leader in staffing and executive search since our inception in 1990, and we continually strive to raise the bar and add value for both our candidates and clients. For job seekers, this study will provide insight into how you rank versus your peers in both job satisfaction and compensation. For companies, you will learn what makes a job offer attractive, and key factors in the retention, growth, and satisfaction of your workforce.

As we set out on our mission to produce this study, we partnered with Inavero, a market research firm specializing in the staffing industry, to conduct research and analysis on relevant trends for both candidates and clients in today’s employment market. We gathered close to 1000 responses from a cross-section of junior-, mid-, and senior-level employees.

The methodology of the study was to evaluate the lifecycle of a job search and analyze findings throughout each stage of the process: search drivers, the offer, retention, and contemplating a change. We have coupled this with market sentiment and perceptions of temporary vs. full-time work to create the Market Insights Report Part One: Job Satisfaction Survey. We then gathered and analyzed current information from the Solomon Page database to compile Part Two: Salary Analysis.

Our findings suggest a positive perception of the current job market, and that this optimism will most likely increase in the three years to come. Considering that the unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in 18 years, we are not surprised. More intriguing findings include the fact that training / continuing education ranks as the most impactful engagement factor, and that company culture and work / life balance have the largest impact on retention and satisfaction.

We hope this report helps you gain insight and perspective while you strive to achieve your job search or hiring goals.

How to Pull Off One More Career Win Before the Year’s Over

Filed under: Goals, How To, Professional Development, Strategy

How many times have you already said that you can’t believe it’s September? And then went through your mental list of everything you said you’d accomplish this year way back in January and felt resigned to the fact that those will now have to be 2018 goals?

Well, before you write off the year, I have a little bit of good news for you. And that good news is that there’s still plenty you can do to set and achieve a new career goal by the end of the year!

Here’s are four steps that’ll get you to where you want to be:

1. Document Your Goal

Your goal might be to get a promotion with your current company. Or you might want a fresh start at a new job. Or, perhaps you just want to learn a new skill.

Whatever you’re hoping to do this year, start by tuning out what everyone around you is working toward right now. No really, forget their goals and focus on your own. After all, just because Jaime wants a promotion, doesn’t mean that’s what you should want.

Once you’re focused on you, write your goal down somewhere that’ll you see it a lot. A sticky note on your bathroom mirror, a reminder in your phone, a tattoo on your hand—whatever you know will work best.

For example, last year I stayed on top of my goal by setting a calendar event for December 31st and creating monthly reminders for the first day of every month. This might sound silly (and maybe even a little annoying), but it really kept me on top of things.

Continue reading on The Muse…

7 Skills Managers will Need in 2025

Filed under: Leadership, Leadership and Management, Professional Development, Relationships, Strategy

We all know that the work landscape is changing. The jobs that will be in demand are shifting as more are automated by artificial intelligence, machine learning, and robots. Teams are becoming more disparate and globalization has added new collaboration challenges. At the same time, more millennials are taking on management roles, and even our work spaces will undergo changes between now and 2025.

“Change will be happening so quickly that 50% of the occupations that exist today will not exist 10 years from now. So we’re going to be living in an environment that is extremely adaptable and changing all the time,” says Liz Bentley, the founder of Liz Bentley Associates, a leadership development consulting firm.

Amid all of this flux, managers are going to need new skills, too. The staid, hierarchical structures of the past aren’t going to work, she says. So as you plan your future managerial career, be sure to keep these skills at the forefront.

TECHNOLOGY MANAGEMENT SKILLS
Technology is going to “grow alongside of us,” says Bentley, and there will be no job that is immune from its effects. Of course, it won’t be a straight line from where we are now to machine learning and robots taking over the workplace, but technology will become an ever-present factor in the workplace. That will create new challenges, conflicts, and opportunities related to skill building, workplace roles, data management, privacy, and others. Managers will need to understand technology enough to keep abreast of and anticipate emerging issues.

Some technological developments will work, some won’t, and some will evolve, she says. But the constant is that managers will need to not only be comfortable with embracing new technology, but they’ll also have to be adept at managing the changing relationship between people and emerging tech.

Continue reading on Fast Company >>

15 Habits of Self-Made Millionaires

Filed under: ambition, Career Advice, Goals, inspiration, Professional Development, Strategy, Success

Success doesn’t crop up overnight. All self-made millionaires had to start somewhere.

Much of their transformation from ordinary to seven-figure status can be attributed to “rich habits,” a term coined by Thomas C. Corley, who spent five years researching the daily habits of 177 self-made millionaires.

“From my research, I discovered that daily habits dictate how successful or unsuccessful you will be in life,” he writes in his 2016 book “Change Your Habits, Change Your Life.”

“There is a cause and effect associated with habits. Habits are the cause of wealth, poverty, happiness, sadness, stress, good relationships, bad relationships, good health, or bad health.”

The good news is all habits can be changed, Corley notes. Here are some “rich habits” of self-made millionaires that you can start developing today:

They read consistently.
The rich would rather be educated than entertained. As Corley writes, “Eighty-eight percent of the rich devote thirty minutes or more each day to self-education or self-improvement reading … Most did not read for entertainment … The rich read to acquire or maintain knowledge.”

Corley found that they tend to read three types of books: biographies of successful people, self-help or personal development, and history.

Continue reading the original article on Business Insider…

3 Efficient Strategies to Be More Productive When You’re Overwhelmed

Filed under: Efficiency, Productivity, Strategy, Stress

You’re absolutely swamped–there are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. And, despite the fact that you know your to-do list is overflowing with things that require your attention and action, you’re frozen. You have so much to do, you only feel paralyzed.

We’ve all been there. Dealing with a plate that’s far too full isn’t fun. But, while your first inclination might be to head for the couch and curl up for a lengthy nap, you know that’s not necessarily the most effective strategy for tackling your workload.

Instead, you need to take a deep breath, chug a few mugs of hot, strong coffee, and get to work. Here’s how to best wade through that daunting to-do list of yours–categorized by what exactly you need to accomplish.

Click here to read the rest on Inc >>

How to Convincingly Fake Confidence, Happiness and Other Necessary Feelings in the Workplace

Filed under: Behavior in the Workplace, Career Advice, Communication, How To, Strategy

We fake it in meetings. We fake it over email. We fake it when we’re envious of someone else’s success. We fake it in the elevator when we ask Kyle if he has any weekend plans. The professional world’s a stage, and we’re all actors pretending to care about how Kyle spends his free time.

The question is: How much do the roles in which you cast yourself differ from who you actually are? Because if they differ a lot, you’re going to cause more problems for yourself than if you’d just behave authentically. But if they differ just a little — if you can fake it in a way that tempers your real feelings and allows you to present yourself as calm or deliberate or enthusiastic or charged up or any other situationally virtuous behavior (SVB, as no one but me refers to it) — then you are giving yourself time to let the negative feelings pass. And they will pass.

A few words on self-presentation
You think that’s you going to work? Heading into a meeting with a client? That’s not you. That’s you, plus your self-presentation tactics.

Click here to read the rest on Entrepreneur >>