Using tools to measure your goals
How to measure your goals
There are several ways to measure your goals, ranging from simple to complex and free to expensive. Sometimes it makes sense to spend money on tools, but when setting goals for your own purposes, keeping it low cost makes sense.
For instance, use a spreadsheet when first starting out. Many people use spreadsheet to measure their productivity at work. Most people associate Microsoft Excel with spreadsheets, and that costs money. However, there are free alternatives, such as Open Office Calc. The Open Office suite of products is available on multiple operating systems. This software is fully functional and compatible with Microsoft products. The best part is it is free.
Sometimes, you will need more sophisticated tools. For instance, when you work on multiple projects simultaneously and there may be dependencies associated with some of the goals, you’ll need to have a better method than a spreadsheet to manage these. This is also true when you have multiple people that you need to measure their contributions to the projects.
While you could use spreadsheets for this, they are not meant for collaborative activities. The reporting features are lacking in a spreadsheet program. A program such as Microsoft Project gives you more control over these types of features.
Other factors to consider when measuring goals is workflow. When someone on your team updates a document, you want the whole team to know about it simultaneously. Otherwise, you will need to constantly coordinate changes to documents or other assets within the project. This can become a full-time job by itself. As most of us continue to work from home, it is also helpful to keep up with the best tech gadgets to work from home. Another factor is time management. It may help to brainstorm about time management apps with the team to find out do time management apps help your productivity.
Even if you have all the tools for working and managing remotely, keep in mind the tool should not be used as a means to run the projects for you. They have their uses, but the responsibility rests with you, or the project manager. Also, you have to consider some flexibility in the measurement as not every item will go according to plan. You may need to make some adjustments along the way. At the end, with or without the help of tools, it is important to have a personal list of good habits to have - high performance habits.
Being too rigid with the plan can cause problems within a team. Strict adherence to a tool will make the projects rigid, by definition. On the other hand, you do need some ways to accurately measure the goals as you are moving on up. It’s a delicate balance that requires compassion as well as firmness.
When choosing a tool, try to get your team involved, so they know what to expect. This isn’t always possible as some companies already have solutions implemented. If this is the case, you will need to manage the expectations of the team and provide any training and assistance needed to make the tool work for them. As you move along, remember the 10 best practices for managing remote teams. Remembering best practices will always make the projects move along more smoothly.
How To Get Promoted
6 Tips For A Faster Promotion
So, you’ve been working in the same position for over a year and no one has said anything to you about a promotion or increase in pay. There could be many reasons for a company not giving you a promotion or a raise and some of them are valid, such as a downturn in the profits of the company or even your own job performance.
However, not all companies are suffering downturns. If your company is thriving but you still haven’t gotten a raise, there are many things you can do to get noticed - in a good way - by your company superiors and move along the promotion process.
Strategies To Help You Move Up The Ladder
14 Habits That Make You a More Valuable Employee
How To Be A Valuable Asset On The Job
Making yourself more valuable to your employer leads to a more successful career. More opportunities open up when you have a resume that stands out and a reputation for being a team player.
You’re likely to enjoy more job satisfaction too. A productive workday is bound to feel more gratifying than watching the clock until it’s time to go home.
While individual bosses and companies will have their own priorities, there are some qualities that are appreciated in just about any workplace. Take a look at this checklist of habits that make you a valuable asset on the job.
Increasing Your Competence
Your performance plays a big role in how much value you contribute at work. Learn about high performance habits. Dedicate yourself to making a consistent effort and delivering high quality work.
These strategies will help you to increase your competence:
Working Well with Others
Soft skills matter too. They’re the kind of traits that can make you someone who others enjoy working with.
Try these techniques to strengthen your soft skills:
Position yourself to stand out in any field. Being recognized as a valuable employee will help you to manage your career and achieve your own definition of success habits.
If you choose Perseverance, Self-Discipline, and Passion as three different traits and combine them together, you have just built a new characteristic and it's called GRIT. Many teachers, psychologists, and other professionals now believe that having grit is more important than having a high IQ score, fine genes, or the highest grades. And thus, grit continues to build momentum.
What is Grit
Put in basic terms, grit is perseverance and passion for meaningful, long-term goals. It’s the capacity to continue to persist at something you’re passionate about and to persevere even if obstacles get in your way.
This is the type of passion that’s about commitment and direction, not infatuation or intense emotion. With this type of passion, you’re able to remain committed to tasks that are boring, difficult or challenging.
Not only that, but grit is about perseverance and self-discipline too. To define perseverance, I'd say it means sticking with it and continuing to work hard, even if you experience failure or difficulties.
Grit is incredibly important in life because it drives our success and achievement. Being naturally talented and smart is great, however, if you want to truly thrive and do well in life (and who doesn’t?) you need to be able to persevere. Without grit and resilience, talent can amount to nothing but unmet potential. It’s only when you put in effort that your talents become skills that can lead to success.
What Is Resilience
Let’s look more closely at resilience. To define resilience, I'd say it is being able to recover from even the most difficult of life’s events. It is your ability to cope with adversity, withstand it and, when you fail, to bounce back and carry on growing, even when life takes a downturn.
Resilience isn’t a trampoline. You won’t be up one moment and down the next. Rather, it’s more like a mountain climb with no trail map. It will take strength, time and support from others. You’re sure to experience many setbacks on the way. Eventually, though, you’ll get to the summit and be able to look back and see the distance that you’ve traveled.
It’s important to note, though, that resilient people will still experience emotional upheaval, suffering, and stress. While it’s common to equate being resilient with being mentally tough, instead, demonstrating resilience means working through that suffering and emotional pain and coming out the other side stronger and more positive.
Resilience is vital since it gives you the strength you need to process hardship and overcome it. If you lack resilience, you’ll be overwhelmed too easily, and can be tempted to adopt unhealthy coping strategies to get through the tough times. Resilient people, on the other hand, can tap into their own support systems and strengths when it comes to overcoming challenges and working through problems.
Resilience comes in two forms. Emotional resilience allows you to tap into your own optimism, even if you’re trying to cope in a crisis. Meanwhile, physical resilience is your body’s capacity to adapt to a challenge and to recover more quickly. Both are helpful when it comes to overcoming adversity.
The good news is that resilience isn’t a trait that’s fixed in place. You can bolster or even build resilience in yourself by changing your behaviors and patterns of thinking, helping you to find more inner strength.
Grit and Resilience In The Workplace
One obvious situation in which grit and resilience are vital to success is in the workplace. Most of us have wondered from time to time why this or that person is so successful in their work. It’s important to understand that their success doesn’t come from their intelligence, their talents, or even their willingness to work for extra time or take on more commitments than are strictly necessary.
In the modern workplace where rivalry, strict deadlines, staff cutbacks and organization change are all commonplace, this type of success relies solely on the individual’s ability to not just cope, but to know how to stay motivated after a setback.
When you encounter the inevitable challenges, you’ll encounter in the workplace, you need to be resilient and bounce back. The workplace will always present several stressors to its employees. So, how can you become more resilient at work?
It’s important to be aware that resilience is actually just a skill, and like other skills, it can be learned and improved with practice.
A resilient employee can build strong relationships and connections with others. These are high-quality relationships that are characterized by several features, especially effective communication. Resilient workers who have positive working relationships do everything possible to help others to become successful at work since they’re team-players aiming for a win-win situation with all their fellow employees.
A resilient employee will also nurture the working network they’ve forged, building trust consistently with other people and fostering positive emotions with other employees.
The modern workplace is typified by stress, and with internet access and cutting-edge technology, work is constantly present in our lives. A resilient worker can manage this stress effectively, preventing it from becoming detrimental and overwhelming. By engaging actively in self-care, nurturing themselves when they experience stressful times, a resilient employee can avoid burnout.
A further characteristic of resilient employees is that they are true to their real selves. They behave in ways that align with their personal beliefs and values. Essentially, they demonstrate grit in their determination to achieve their challenging and ambitious goals, whatever obstacles they encounter.
A gritty, resilient worker perceives their work as meaningful and, thanks to this mindset, they feel their work will achieve an outcome that is valuable. This equips them more effectively to cope when work is stressful.
Even with a resilient mindset, employees will experience stress at work. But, a key characteristic of such workers is that they monitor their thought patterns when under duress and identify the patterns that impede their chance of success.
Resilient workers are also adaptive and flexible, ready to cope with change in the workplace. So, how can you develop more resilience and grit in your working life?
Take a positive stance – this allows you to adapt more effectively to adversity, giving you more control over your working environment. Putting motivation and energy into your work will build personal resilience.
Having emotional insight – with emotional insight, you can be more aware of the emotions you’re experiencing, and whether they’re positive or negative. You’ll also be able to consider the impact of your behavior and reactions on yourself and others.
Developing balance – personal resilience is achieved through a healthy work/life balance. You need to take the time to recuperate, unwind and relax so you can bounce back from stress.
Fostering spirituality – finding purpose and meaning in your work and believing it contributes to a greater good buffer the negative effects of stress.
Becoming reflective – if you can be in tune with your emotional reactions and feelings, this helps to protect you from the negative effect of stress. An awareness of your potential triggers will allow you to prepare effectively and gather the necessary resources so you can bounce back in the face of adversity.
Why Would You Want to Hire a Coach?
Coaching, in its modern format, has been around since the late 1990’s. People still think of it as something new, but in reality, coaching has been around for millennia. There has never been a period in mankind’s history where coaches did not exist.
Sure, it might have looked a little different, but coaching is as old as the hills. Modern day Coaching may be more refined and a lot more commercially viable, but the principles remain the same.
What Does a Career Coach Do?
May people are trying to find a career coach. Coaches have the skills and knowledge to advise, support, and encourage their client.
Career coaches help their clients to:
A career coach also has the ability to remain detached from the issues at hand.
Consider the wise words of Albert Einstein:
Time Is Money
In the modern era, in life and business, time is money. There’s an ever-increasing amount of cooperation and collaboration going on both in businesses and in peoples’ private lives. We need to figure things out almost on the fly these days while dealing with different time zones and cultures.
Everyone has their own unique issues to handle alongside everything else that needs to be accommodated, and then there’s the technology we all use to connect with everybody and everything.
Life is definitely more complex today and it certainly seems to be speeding up every time you turn around. It doesn’t take long before we begin to have thoughts of overwhelm and burnout on our minds.
The question we need to ask ourselves is this: “How long can I justify spending time and money on this issue trying to figure it out for myself, knowing what Albert Einstein said about problem solving?”
If having a Coach could save you time and money, it would be ridiculous NOT to hire one, wouldn’t it?
Throughout history, every King has had an Advisor (Coach) in every culture. Every military leader has had a Strategist (Coach), every World Class Athlete has had a trainer (Coach), and every Entertainer has had a Manager (Coach).
Who Hires a Career Coach?
The only conclusion we can draw from the history of Coaching is that the people who hire a Coach fall into two camps:
Many people will say that they want to change themselves, their life, their job, or their circumstances, but in real terms, they are fearful of change. They delay, procrastinate, and make excuses. They lack self-confidence and the drive to follow through. It’s human nature. It’s what ordinary people always do.
People who hire a career coach are not ordinary people.
They are inspired and have vision. They embrace change and are prepared to get fully engaged in making positive changes in their life. Plus, they don’t want it to take forever!
They have a sense of urgency, and they want someone they can lean on, confide in, use as a sounding board, and rely on to help them make the inevitable tough decisions that they can see on the horizon.
People hiring their first coach are often racked with pessimism. They think, “What if I waste my money?”
Consider that, before you hire a coach, you’re already wasting time, which is the same as money, and you lack the resources to resolve the issues at hand. It would cost you less to hire a coach and find out first-hand and NOW how unbelievably useful a coach can be.
People who are hiring their second or subsequent coach have no pessimism. What they are looking for is the perfect fit for them and the circumstances they find themselves in.
Within reason, money is not the issue and they never think about the possibility of wasting it. Their main concern is finding the RIGHT coach and then hoping that the coach they choose has a spot left open where they can be accommodated, and can they start today?
Is Hiring a Coach Right For You?
Maybe. Maybe not.
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, perhaps a coach can get you moving in the right direction to help you create the life you desire - and sooner rather than later.
Top 10 Tips For Reinventing Yourself
Most of us, at some point in our lives, are presented with the opportunity to reinvent ourselves. If you change your job, move to a different town or even country, you can tidy up all the loose ends in your recent past and step out into a brand-new persona.
You can change the way you dress, live, and how you show up in life. This is a particularly refreshing time for those people who welcome change, because it gives them a reason and a purpose to change everything at the same time.
If you relish the opportunity to change, consider these Top 10 Tips for reinventing yourself:
Most of the time, our mind runs on autopilot because how we show up in life is directed by our subconscious mind. When you turn the job over to your conscious mind and really put some thought into it, amazing things can happen.
People’s perception of you can change in a heartbeat if you apply any one of these Top 10 Tips. If you apply yourself to all 10, you will, indeed, be a completely different person - one that you consciously designed. Try it - you’ll like it!
Your IT Career
We all get stuck in ruts from time to time, and that happens on the job as well.
You've thought about doing something different with your information technology career, but just haven't quite gotten around to it yet. Sound familiar? You can make 2021 the best year yet for your IT career.
There are SEVERAL SIMPLE STEPS you can take to accelerate your career but you have to TAKE THE STEP, not just think about it!
Learn Something New
One of the biggest reasons you get tired of a job is that you're doing the same thing every day. If you happen to love what you do, that's great, but if not it's time to break out of the box. Besides, learning a new skill adds value to your career. If you've been doing server work for a long time, take the time to learn other skills. If you're an Exchange specialist, learn some Linux skills.
Not very many of us get to work for the same company for the rest of our IT careers. The only job security is the security you give yourself, and one of the ways to get that security is to add professional certifications to your resume. Certifications get you noticed and help you stand out from the crowd. Ask yourself what your resume would look like if you were laid off today, and then take steps to improve yourself and your professional standing.
You Might Take A Step Back
Be prepared to take one step backwards in order to take multiple steps forward.
You may be in a situation one of my clients was in a while back when his employer saw him as strictly a server guy. My client wanted to get on the Cisco side of things, but there was this perception that he was "only a LAN guy". He had to leave that company to get his shot. There was some short-term financial pain, but in the long run it was the best career move he had ever made.
People get typecast in every field. In his book "Often Wrong, Never In Doubt", Donny Deutsch writes about a job candidate who wanted to become a junior ad executive, but couldn't break in with his current employer which was an ad agency! He was typecast in a support role, so he applied to other ad firms and was quickly hired.
Sometimes you have to look outside your current situation in order to create a new situation for yourself. Don't be afraid to take a step backwards in order to open up new possibilities for yourself. There's an amazing career out there, waiting for you if you have the courage to make it and take it.
Recently, I have been searching and writing about the precise meaning of many words that have to do with our endurance and survival. I started to write about the meanings of efficiency, discipline, resilience, productivity, and hope, just to name a few.
I always thought productivity was the key to success. Later, I realized success has a recipe of its own with many ingredients. Aside from the above-mentioned traits, one of the most important characteristics is PERSEVERANCE.
To define perseverance, it's best to start with the dictionary. Dictionary.com defines perseverance as follows:
Synonyms for Perseverance
Alongside Dictionary.com, there is always Thesaurus.com and this is how it lists the synonyms for perseverance.
Perseverance adjectives are listed as perseverant and persevering. You would think they mean the same thing, right? Here is what https://wikidiff.com/persevering/perseverant has to say about it.
Quotes About Perseverance
I have read that intellectual perseverance is harnessing one's intelligence and building a Never Quit attitude by leveraging the power of positive thinking in spite of increases in negative thinking.
The Philosophical Life wrote an article in 2018 on Medium about intellectual perseverance and explained:
"....Intellectual perseverance is a habit that comes from a love of learning. It’s the tendency to not give up on learning when the learning gets tough. Instead, you embrace intellectual struggle. You persist toward greater understanding. Intellectual perseverance is an intellectual virtue....."
Here is a little fable about Susan and her job search story. She persevered until she found her ideal job and so can you.
Job Search Success Story
Susan was looking for a job, so she sent her resume all over town. She scoured the newspapers every day, and by the end of the month, Susan had applied to over one hundred openings. “Surely,” Susan thought “I will find my dream job soon!”
But many days passed and Susan didn't hear back from any of the jobs where she had applied. She began to worry – was there something wrong with her resume?
Finally, two weeks after she sent in her 107th resume, she got a call for her first interview! Soon after, Susan got another two calls and she ended up with three interviews scheduled. “Finally,” she thought, “I’m one step closer to my dream job!”
So Susan went to her interviews and she thought she made a wonderful impression, but to Susan’s disappointment, she only heard back about one job, and it was the lowest paid, least fulfilling opportunity of the three.
“Should I take it?”, she wondered. The thought of working every day at a job she hated made her feel hopeless. Susan was afraid she might not find anything else, so she accepted the job, but vowed to continue looking for something better.
A few weeks after accepting the low-paying, unfulfilling job, Susan got a call from a company that hadn’t got back to her for weeks. It turns out they needed someone with Susan’s exact skill set!
Finally, after some hard work and persistence, Susan was offered the job of her dreams – the money was good and it was just the kind of work she was looking for.
When we put in our best effort, we create opportunities, find opportunities, and opportunities will find us. When we allow disappointment and discouragement to take over, we don’t see the hidden gems right in front of our faces!
What if Susan had stopped the pursuit of her dream job when she took the dead-end position? What if she had allowed her disappointment to dictate her actions? What if she ignored the phone call about her dream job offer?
Well, she wouldn’t be very happy at all! She would be suffering an inner tension day in and day out.
We must continue to persevere and leverage the power of positive thinking even as negative thinking seems so much easier. It's an easier way to create results.
Opportunities will come. They always do when we work, wait, and watch for them.
Resilience is defined as the ability to recover quickly from adversity. The research shows that people are more likely to learn from difficult or traumatic situations (resilience) than not.
To define resilience, Dictionary.com writes as follows:
Traits of Resilience
There are several personal qualities that are considered ‘protective factors’ in individuals who are resilient. These factors are based on years of research.
The personal resiliency indicators are:
Most people have some of these characteristics. We can build our resilience by developing traits and characteristics that we do not currently possess.
Productivity at Work: 6 Tips That Increase Your Efficiency
Productivity seems to be a hot topic while people are still adjusting to the changes in work and lifestyle due to the new work-at-home culture and paradigm shifts.
To begin, it's important to look up Productivity Definition before discussing it here. Dictionary.com defines productivity as follows: