Category: Focus

7 Ways You Can Function In A Dysfunctional Workplace

Filed under: Distractions, Focus, Office Politics, Quick Tips

We spend so much of our lives in the workplace. The right setting can make even a tedious job something to look forward to, but there are many workplaces that suffer from some degree of dysfunction, says Inc. Knowing how to manage workplace dysfunction with grace is one of those priceless skills you don’t learn at school.

Here are seven thoughts that can help:

  1. Stay focused.

Rise above and stay focused on your job and your performance. Act as you would if you were the boss. Don’t be concerned with what others do; concentrate on doing your own job and doing it well.

  1. Keep your distance.

Do not participate! One of the best things you can do is to keep yourself apart from the games, because participation–even as an adversary–makes dysfunctional behaviors thrive. If you distance yourself, you’re not part of the problem.

Click here to read the rest on Inc >>

10 Tips for Leadership When You’re Not the Boss

Filed under: Focus, Goals, Insights, Leadership and Management

When founders and CEOs look to hire and promote managers, they want people who exhibit leadership. But how can you exhibit leadership if you’re stuck in individual contributor roles? No one reports to you, and you’re not even a project manager.

Good news is, leader isn’t a title, it’s a group of characteristics, and you can acquire them, even if you’re not the boss. Here are 10 ideas:

1. Communicate clearly. Leaders don’t grumble behind closed doors when things don’t go their way. They don’t say yes when they should have said no. They say what they mean, and do so in a way that people understand. This is not advocating rudeness, but it is advocating dropping passive-aggressive behavior.

Click here to read the rest on Inc. >>

5 Priorities HR Can’t Ignore in 2015

Filed under: Focus, Goals, Insights, Productivity

How employees get their work done has changed remarkably quickly; unsurprisingly HR needs to change too.

Anyone who works in a global company doesn’t need to be told that their job has changed enormously in the past few years.

Even if their job title – and sometimes their job description – remains unscathed, the number of people they work with, the amount of information they use to make decisions, their day-to-day tasks, and the technology they use have all changed quicker than at any time in their careers.

The changing nature of work is one of five trends CEB’s research shows will shape global business in 2015. And, given the function’s role, this shift in how work is accomplished means a lot of change for HR professionals. Heads of HR and their teams should take five steps in particular to help their firm make the most of the new work environment.

Click here to read the rest on CEB >> 

Can You Be Patient?

Filed under: Behavior in the Workplace, Focus, Goals, Good Habits

By nature, I am not a patient person. Put me in a long line, and my skin crawls. But it is becoming increasingly obvious to me that impatience is the enemy of nearly everything I hold dear.

Impatience is the root of most anger. It causes people to make bad decisions, lose their temper, and go ballistic.

Impatience turns intelligent people into Neanderthals. It lowers your IQ to about 37.

It’s what made you fire off that email that very nearly got you fired.

It’s why you acted like an ugly jerk to your spouse, and why you screamed so loudly at your child that the poor kid tried to sink through the cracks in the floor.

Trying to get things fast is a formula for getting much less than you deserve.

This is what I keep telling myself, and I’m moving in the right direction, towards being a bit more patient. But lines still make my skin crawl, and my left hand still has to tear my right away from the SEND key when I’m tempted to solve a problem quickly via email, rather than slowly by talking it out… after I’ve calmed down.

Why is it so hard to be patient?

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

How To Stay Focused In A Distracting Workplace

Filed under: Focus, Good Habits, Productivity, Your Career

If you’re struggling to concentrate in a crowded office, there are a few simple things you can do to weed out distractions and get back to your work.

Co-workers, social media, and even your own anxiety can be overwhelming, but they shouldn’t keep you from your work. These five tips on how to stay focused in a distracting workplace will help you to draw boundaries with your co-workers, turn off Twitter, and silence your inner procrastinator.

1. Wear Earphones Or Earplugs


One of the easiest and most direct ways to tune out ambient noise and idle chitchat is to block up your ears. Earplugs will cheaply and easily muffle your co-workers voices, not to mention the copier, the shredder, and the speakerphone in the next cube. Music also helps some people to focus, although finding the right song for your mood can become a distraction in itself. Many people find that instrumental music works best.

Click here to read the rest on Careerealism >>

Don’t Give Up!

Filed under: Attitude, Focus, Goals, Persistence

Life is hard.

In fact, life can be extremely challenging, if not devastating for some. It brings a lot of great moments, but the hard moments can be overwhelming and put us in a mindset of giving up, folding, and becoming completely demotivated.

Some of you may be looking for a job.

Some are in the midst of a challenging financial time.

Some of you might be going through a difficult relationship.

Some of you might have a physical challenge.

Some are just tired of the tough time you’re having, in your job, right now.

You can choose to give up, or you can think of things that may remind you why giving up is the worst thing you can do…family, friends, coworkers…etc.

Life will not always be easy, but here are a few thoughts on why not to give up. 5 reasons why not to give up…

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

Seven Ways To Sharpen Your Memory

Filed under: Cognitive Ability, Focus, Good Habits, Skills

We often talk about our ability to remember in terms of its being good or bad: “I have a mind like a sieve,” “He has a photographic memory,” “She works hard, but she just can’t retain what she’s learned.”

What we fail to recognize is that the way we use our memory has a lot to do with how effectively it operates. Here, seven strategies from cognitive science and psychology that will allow us to remember better.

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

5 Ways to Give Your Brain a Break Right Now

Filed under: Efficiency, Focus, Productivity, Stress

Hip Silicon Valley tech companies started the growing trend of offering their employees unique perks that seem to encourage stepping away from the desk. Google’s free massages, Twitter’s rock climbing wall, and Dropbox’s gaming tournaments come to mind. Some may dismiss these initiatives as ploys for PR or to impress new recruits, but there is solid evidence that fun creativity breaks actually improve employee productivity.

I was recently interviewed for an Entrepreneur article about how pursuing varied interests can make you a better entrepreneur, but the same basic principle applies to all employees. Human brains are not meant to focus on the same task for hours at a time, yet most Americans work at least 8 to 9 hours per day on the same thing.

The eight hour workday became the norm after the Ford Motor Company found that number resulted in maximum productivity at its factories. But there is a major problem with this: the idea of an eight-hour day with a short lunch break is based on the most effective formula for physical labor, not mental work and certainly not creative mental work. The brain is much more active – and therefore much more likely to drain – than any other muscle or organ in our bodies. Evidence shows that the brain cycles from highest attention to lowest attention approximately every 90 minutes. This suggests that you should hit the reset button about that often.

One of the best ways to recharge is to engage in something different. 

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

Breaking Through The Wall

Filed under: Career Advice, Focus, Strategy, Your Career

Do you hit the wall at work? You know, that feeling at maybe 3pm where you feel almost frozen from your head to your toes, unable to focus, mind and body wanting to stop or scurry to a diversion of any kind. From art to athletics, from the studio to the office, hitting the wall happens to all of us. What do we do when it happens? Stop running? Slap the writing tablet shut? Tune out the work and tune in social media posts, Youtube or television? Maybe. I prefer to engage one of the following strategies to break through the wall and discover what’s on the other side.

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

Focus On How You Connect

Filed under: Communication, Focus, Good Habits, Social Impact

We’re not going to eliminate technology from our lives anytime soon. Nor should we. Smart phones and social media expand our universe. We can connect with others or collect information easier and faster than ever. But they also expand our spectrum of attention. In this instance, too much of a good thing can become a distraction, even a false reality – sometimes at the detriment of our relationships.

Spreading ourselves too thin across an ever-growing number of platforms of interaction can weaken our personal bonds. We shouldn’t confuse all of our social media connections with the rich personal world of real-time relationships. Granted, our hyper-connected world – even with people we rarely see or speak with regularly – can offer very valuable sources of information. They expand what you can know: you may find out about a job opening, or get introduced to someone you might date.

But getting lost in a world of too many digital connections can be very unfulfilling and isolating. That’s why when it comes to close personal connections, try to prioritize your communication methods. When possible, make the interaction face to face – especially if you need to discuss something important.

Click to read the rest on LinkedIn >>