Category Archives: English

Admit that you are AMAZING

When was the last time when you said that you are an amazing person? Some people are afraid of saying this or they are really good on putting themselves down. I was one of them and maybe sometimes I still am. And all of this is because it is easier to see the flaws first and you need somebody else to make you open your eyes and  see the good behind this.

Then comes the question: what you understand by being amazing? Each person has a different answer for this and sometimes it depends on how low or high are our expectations from us, other people or life.  And I think another important variable, let’s say so, is how much we are aware of our success or if we have emotional intelligence or not.

I have a friend who didn’t like to say that she is extraordinary in her work and she preferred for the others to not tell her this. And I was one of the people that was telling her this with each occasion when we were meeting because I recognize a talent when I see it and I like to tell everybody how awesome are the people in my life. One of the reasons why my friend was like this is because she didn’t want to become arrogant until one day when I made her realise that it is healthy to recognize yourself for your hard-work and for your results. I also told her to repeat every day that she is great and this helped her a lot in her work and daily life.

My advice for you: tell yourself each day that you are amazing and you will attract only amazing people and events around you. And stay positive

 

Leading for Growth Summit

The time wasn’t my friend in the last period and now I have to recover it. In the last posts I mentioned you about a leadership event, Leading for Growth Summit,  organised by JCI Dublin. A well, that event happened on the 9th of November, in a rainy and gray Friday in a nice place in Dublin.

It was a good event, especially for its first edition, organised by a big multicultural team. At the event came 9 great speakers, who shared their own leadership stories and some almost made the audience cry. I will try to summarize the things that I learned at this event.

The most important thing about being a leader is first to be able to lead yourself. The first thing you should do when you get out from the bed in the morning is to lead yourself.

The speaker that started this summit  was Mary Davis, Regional President and Managing Director of Special Olympics across Europe Eurasia and she talked about Ingredients For Strong Leadership.  May started her speech with this famous quote:  “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”. The first ingredient is to take action, do the things that you want, nobody will do it for you. The time is always right to do what is right. The second is to lead by example, be a role model for the people around you and be a source of inspiration. The third ingredient is the Golden circle: Why, How, What and the most important is the Why, if the people understand it, they will follow you. If you use only the What and How you will like somebody else, but if you first say and explain the Why this takes you one step further.  Another important thing in your leadership journey is how you handle your difficulties. A leader is an ordinary person with extraordinary determination.

The second speaker was Simon Bolger, who talked about Leading With A Purpose. Simon  leads the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Online Partnerships Group at Google. The first thing you must do is to practice the basics. Earn the right to lead, have a view of the future and you have to know when to lead and when to follow. The second this is about awareness about yourself. Be present, listen and tune-in, understand your leadership style and know what you value. The last thing is about the purpose. Be yourself, be principled. Be purposeful, make a decision, then iterate.  Focus on the things that matter.

Tony Hefferman is the Founder & CEO of Bee For Battens, The Saoirse Foundation, Ireland’s National Charity For Batten Disease, he is also a Director of the Medical Research Charities Group & was recently elected as the 1st Global President of The Batten Disease International Alliance.  His subject was Social Leadership. Tony talked about the things that a leader must have and these are: the vision, focus, communication, drive, values and a strategy.  Be prepared to take risks and deal with the unexpected. As a leader it is crucial to know your team, to know their strengths and weaknesses  and to be aware of yours. Another important thing is to set challenges for you and your team because in this way you can develop more.

Another speaker was Andrew Keogh, a Presentations Consultant and Speaker. Andrew taught  us how to tell our stories. In tough times or times of change we must double the level of communication. This you can do through 4 steps: Connect, build relationships, create trust and connect to grow. Andrew talked also about changes. Today the change is acceptable, it is a journey that has to be explained, tomorrow the change will be the law of life.

The speaker that I liked the most is Caroline Casey, a social entrepreneur and Founder of the not-for-profit organisation Kanchi and its pioneering social franchise The Ability Awards.  The most dangerous leaders are the people taht dream and then are doing what they dreamed.  Caroline gave us some advices from her own experience: be an authentic self, don’t compare yourself with someone else, sometimes it is better to let it go if you see that you are not the right person to do it, be around people that believe in you and the most important thing, love what you do, it will make your life easier.

Another great speaker was Gerry Duffy and his topic was “Leaving Your Comfort Zone“.  Gerry’s’ sporting CV is filled accomplishments such as running 32 marathons in 32 days around Ireland as well as completing and winning the inaugural UK DECA Enduroman Ironman distance challenge in 2011.This ten day sporting challenge has been dubbed ‘The toughest 10 day Endurance Challenge in the World’. In his opinion, the ultimate success formula is this: “Decide what you want, take action, notice what is working and what is not, change your approach until you achieve what you want. It is very important to remember that the small keys open the big doors.

The other speakers were: PJ Timmins who talked about People Management, Theo Lynn, his topic was Social Media And The Science Of Persuasion and Johnny Walker who took us in a A Medical Entrepreneurial Experience.

As you can see, are as many theories about leadership as many people talk about it. We can learn a little bit of each other and to adapt it to our own style and preferences.

 

Skills- and what next???

Nowadays, it is crucial to have developed a lot if skills because this helps you find a better job or it  helps you achieve your goals.

Most of the students think they are skilled just because they have a University degree and they are not aware of the fact that this is not true, especially in this days, when the competition is high and you have to have something to differentiate from the others.

Okay, you are a skilled person, you know a lot of things, you have some great experience of work (corporate or volunteer), but what you’ll gonna do next? What are your plans? At what company do you want to work? A big mistake that most of the people do is that they have an idea about what they would like to do in the future, in which field they want to do, but they don’t have a concrete plan.  Think at 5 companies where you want to work and start preparing. Don’t think you don’t have a chance, don’t think that you can’t do it, don’t think that you should wait until you have more experience. Go for it! You don’t have nothing to lose.

This is the lesson that I learned this week from my coach, Kevin. When he asked me to tell him 5 companies where I want to apply for a job, for some moments I was shocked because I couldn’t answer him immediately. I don’t think I really thought about this until that moment. I just had in mind a company where I said I don’t have any chances now and that I need more experience.  After the discussion with Kevin, I realized that I have the skills that company is looking for and the only thing that was stopping me was ME.

Thank you, Kevin, you are the best coach I could ever have.

Now, it is time to start preparing for applying to my dream company, so see you next time.

Leader of Leaders

Leader, leadership, this words are used so often by everyone and you can’t stop asking: all of them know what that means? It is like a cliche and at a point it will lose its meaning.

Or, just because you coordinate a team doesn’t mean leadership, that is TEAM MANAGEMENT, if you were curious, and it is a big difference between this two concepts.

Once I took an interview to a management consultant who was also the owner of the company, and one of the questions was: “Your employees are overqualified managers and the usual motivators don’t work with them. How you motivate your team ?” . The answer it is not relevant now, but the question can be asked  in this way: “If you are a leader of other leaders, how you motivate them, how you manage them?”. Maybe it is easy to answer, but is harder to do it.

John Maxwell wrote in one of his books about The 5 levels of Leadership, and these are:

Level One – Leadership From Position. At this level people follow you because they have to. To be an effective leader at this level know your job, be prepared to accept responsibility, exercise authority with caution, assess the strengths and short comings of your people, do more than what is expected and challenge people with interesting and tough assignments. It is important that we recognize that Positional Level is the doorway to leadership and every successful leader must pass through this doorway.

Level Two – Leadership From Respect. People follow you because they want to. To be effective at the respect level, possess a genuine concern for your people. It is important that you see life through their eyes. Deal with wisely with difficult people and make employees successful by setting them up for success. This level forms the foundation for leadership success.

Level Three – Leadership From Results. People follow you because of what you have done for the organization. To be an effective leader at this level be prepared to initiate and accept responsibility for growth by developing a purpose and seeing it through to completion. Leadership from results is built on admiration for the leader.

Level Four – Leadership From People Development. People follow you because of what you have done for them. Focus your attention on the fact that people are your most valuable asset and your leadership success will depend on your ability to surround yourself with an inner core of competent people who compliment your leadership style and goals. Leadership from people development is built on loyalty.

Level Five – Leadership From Mentorship. People follow you because they respect you. As a leader you are bigger than life and your success is shown through a life of accomplishments. People seek you out after you have left the company because you have left an indelible mark on the organization and the employees.

If you coordinate a team of leaders at the 4th level of leadership, who passed through the level of position, the level of respect, the level of results and the level of people development, what can you offer them more? What can you offer them more as a leader? You might say that you are the 5th level and you still have the mentorship, but unfortunately a few people reach that level, most of the people stay at the level 4.

I don’t say this is the hardest thing in the world, but it is more complicated than to develop a person from zero and to make him a good leader, than to take in your team 4 developed leaders. The key is to find other ways to motivate them and offer them exactly what they are looking for. If you can do this with your team, this will help you grow as a leader.

What do you want: to develop people from zero and to make them leaders or to be a leader of other leaders and to find other ways to motivate and manage them?

Not JUST a Team

We all know what it is a team, it has no sense to start explaining it. And sometimes a team it is not just some people that work together, it is a bunch of people that enter in your life, some are leaving , but some are there with you for a lifetime. And all start with a “Hi, my name is… “.

Until now I worked in more than 15 teams and each experience was different, each experience taught me a lot about myself,  about a team, about winning, about losing, about going further, about people, about friendship. And I had good experiences and others which helped me develop more.

I heard a lot of time people saying that they want to be friends way long after the project is ended, but few keep their promise. It is not easy, you might say, but WHY? Or maybe it is about the “click” between people, about the way they are, about the things they go through together and it is about honesty and carrying about each other.

After years I remember and I will always remember the team that wasn’t just a team for me, it was and it is still more than that. Those people are some of my best friends and even though we worked only 3 months together and it was 3 years ago, we are still there for each other, when we meet it is celebration, and, with modesty, we are an example for other teams, we kept our promise. You won’t remember the results, you’ll remember the experience, you have the memories and the people, not the achievement.

What it takes to become a great team? A good leader, a crazy team-building, a purpose of being the best, 6 different people (in my case) that complete each other, support, fun, hard-working, passion and an open heart.

I wish you to have a team as I had and to feel what I am feeling every time I think at those people and I remember that period of my life.

For OC LPM 2, 2009 🙂

Start doing it!

For some time I said that I will start writing in english on my blog, but every time I tried, it was just trying. But I preferred to say I can’t write in English. Bad choice. “I can’t” without really trying it doesn’t count. Maybe I had just to start doing it. And now I am doing it, I don’t know if it is good or bad, I will find this out eventually , but for now I want to do it. It’s that simple, isn’t it?

A lot of years I said I don’t know to cook, I am bad at it, but I never tried it very hard. I had a lot of excuses, the kitchen is to far from my room, I don’t have time, I don’t have all I need and so on. Now I am cooking, with some help from the internet, but I am doing it. And I am not that bad as I thought, at least from the feedback received. Funny, isn’t it?

Last year I said that I don’t like marketing and I won’t never be good at it, but now I realize that I know some stuff and it is really cool, and now I like it and I am not that bad at it.

How many times we say we can’t do that, or we are not that good, or we could never do that without trying it? You never know what you could discover about yourself, maybe it is really easy, maybe you would like it, maybe you are good at it, or bad, at least you will know for sure.

I promised myself that I will try and do all the things I want and I won’t let my fear or something else stopping me from doing it. If it is good or bad doesn’t really matter, but at least I will know for sure, without no assumptions.

All the best.

P.S.: it is my first post in English, so please be gentle :).