SUCCESS – A Simple Life Well Lived

30 09 2010

The businessman was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The businessman complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied only a little while.

The businessman then asked why he didn’t stay out longer and catch more fish? The Mexican said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs. The businessman then asked, but what do you do with the rest of your time? The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos; I have a full and busy life, señor.”

The businessman scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and I could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats; eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the processor and eventually open your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City where you would run your expanding enterprise.”

The Mexican fisherman asked, “But señor, how long will this all take?” To which the businessman replied, “15-20 years.” “But what then, señor?” The businessman laughed and said, “That’s the best part! When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.” “Millions, señor? Then what?” The businessman said, “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”

The fisherman, still smiling, looked up and said, “Isn’t that what I’m doing right now?”

-Author Unknown





9 Ways To Deal With People Who Bother You

14 09 2010

Everyone has faced someone that has bothered them at some point in life. Sometimes we can deal with them, and sometimes we need a little help. Lifehack.org provided this blog on how best to deal with such people and such situations.

They might be business associates, colleagues, friends, or even family members and relatives but whoever they are, we need to learn how to manage them and our feelings towards them. Here are 9 top tips:

1. You can only change yourself: Always remember that it’s not about changing others, but about changing yourself and how you deal with the situation. You can try to change others, but it probably won’t work. What will work is changing your reaction to that person or situation and your perception of it.

2. Draw your boundaries: Clarify what you will and won’t tolerate and then stick with it. It is of utmost importance to protect yourself and your personal space and to be clear on what behaviour is or isn’t acceptable. If you don’t do so, it’s easy for you to be pushed around and end up feeling miserable.

3. Be upfront about where you stand: People aren’t mind readers. They may not even be aware that they are upsetting you. Give off some signs that you are not happy with the situation. And if you do have to deal with them, be clear how much time you have for them. Or cut the face to face communication and deal with the person via text or email.

4. Be firm when needed: Stand your ground! If the person continues to upset you, draw the line right there. Be strong and push back. Be firm on your boundaries and you will find yourself a lot happier and more content.

5. Ignore them: Responding to this person pretty much affirms their behaviour and gives them a reason to continue doing what they’re doing. Ignoring it is sometimes the best option and they’ll have to seek find someone else to pester!

6. Don’t take it personally: Most of the time, these people behave the same way around others too so don’t think that it is because of you. Growing to realise that the behaviour does not relate personally to you will help you deal with the person themselves.

7. Observe how others handle them: Watching how other people deal with the same person you have issues with is a great way to work out how to deal with the situation. Take a back seat by broaching a topic that’s relevant between the two of them and play the silent role in the situation. You will get interesting results.

8. Show kindness: A lot of the time, the person you are having trouble with behaves the way they do because they just want someone to listen to them. Why not try hearing what they have to say and be sympathetic. Don’t impose on them, but just be there and empathise. It might just do the trick.

9. Help them: Last but not least, reach out a hand. As well as giving them a listening ear, check with them if they need any help, or if there is anything you can do to help them. Help them to uncover their problem but fix it for themselves so that they don’t pester you or rely on you to be around.





Be Responsive, Be Successful

13 09 2010

– Adapted from an article on Get Rich Slowly

I found a piece last week that addresses an important facet of personal relationships. Michael Hyatt is often asked, “What’s the secret of your success?” His answer: “Responsiveness.”

So many people I meet are unresponsive. They don’t return their phone calls promptly. They don’t answer their emails quickly. They don’t complete their assignments on time. They promise to do something and never follow through. They have to be reminded, prodded, and nagged. This behaviour creates work for everyone else and eats into their own productivity. Hyatt is describing the good old-fashioned procrastinator. Procrastination springs from many sources — stress, over-commitment, depression, fear of failure — but ultimately it hurts both the procrastinator and those around him.

 Reality is that we live in an “instant world.” People want instant results. They don’t want to wait. And if they have to wait on you, their frustration and resentment grows. They begin to see you as an obstacle to getting their work done. If that happens, it will begin to impact your reputation. Your actions affect how other people see you. If you’re unresponsive, people will look for other ways to get their job done. If you’re an unresponsive salesman, your customers will call somebody else. If you’re an unresponsive manager, your employees will work around you, not with you. But if people know they can count on you, they’ll seek your assistance in the future, and you’ll be rewarded with increased reputation and responsibility.

Not sure how others see you? Ask them to tell you the things you never hear. The truth is, you are building your reputation — your brand — one response at a time…You can’t afford to be unresponsive. It is a career-killer. My basic rule is this: respond immediately unless there is a good reason to wait. Free Money Finance often states “your career is your most valuable financial asset.” It’s true. Responsiveness will help you to succeed at work; lack of responsiveness will lead you to fail.

The great thing about being responsive is that it will quickly differentiate you from your peers. People love doing business with responsive people. Nothing will advance your career faster than this. Here are some ways to become more responsive:

•Develop a positive attitude.

•Modify your environment to eliminate distractions.

•Learn to put others’ needs before your own, especially on the job.

•Think creatively — reach your goal through any means necessary.

•Compare your actions with your personal values: are they in line with each other?

•Implement a system to assist you in Getting Things Done.

•Don’t be a slavish adherent to rules and procedures — be flexible.

•Don’t put things off — take care of them now.

Just do it!

– Quinton