Ralf Weiser's Blog – Shake Up Your Snow Globe! ©

Stop doing, shake your globe, ponder, dream, start reaching your full potential – live on purpose and do it with a smile!

Archive for the category “collaborative management”

This I believe, every struggle is also an opportunity


This I believe, every struggle also represents an opportunity to grow. Besides of getting picked on and outright bullied in school and apprenticeship I grew up with two alcoholic parents in the household. By the time I was 16 years old Dad got us into debt enough not to be able to afford heating oil for two years. His constant violent mental psycho terror caused a lot of uncertainty and stress especially for my sister and mom. When I turned 22 my mom had had enough, and I helped her divorce him and I got to literally kick him out of our house.

Those were the worst times and also the best times. We made do with what we had. My mom, sister, grandparents, and I got a lot closer and we fixed what we could not replace or afford to buy new. We got fire wood so that we could have heat at home and have hot water. We grew veggies at home and back then we even slaughtered pigs at home making sausages and canning meat to be almost self-sufficient. Did I wish at the time things could have been different? Oh yes. I sent off many unanswered prayers in those years towards heaven.

All the sorrows, challenges, and misery also came with opportunities that would change my life forever:

  • There were long hours at home wondering in what kind of mood my parents would be coming home with, or what might happen at any given moment of their unpredictable behavior. It made me very sensitive and empathetic toward other people. I can more easily meet people at eye level.
  • I can fix just about anything on house, yard, electronics, and vehicles with wheels.
  • It made me very humble and grateful for any good person and opportunity that would come into my life. Everything that I ever wanted in life I already have – getting more of everything offers no additional value. Money is not to be pursued, it is attracted to whom you have become.
  • It made me realize that my only escape was to grow personally and professionally. I used many opportunities that came along and mastered new skills, abilities, and connected with many new people. One person attracted to you for whom you have become can change your life forever.
  • It made me realize that I have the moral obligation to become the best person that I can be.
  • I learned that it is my duty to give back by providing opportunities for others. I have the moral obligation to make a positive difference in other people’s lives.
  • Finally, I learned the power of forgiveness. Because I was bitter and I did not want to be like my dad I had become the 180 degree copy and thus just as bad a person. My life turned around for the better once I forgave my dad and started to live my own genuine life.

I most certainly did not need and want the challenges early in my life. This I believe, those very challenges let me flourish in life and now are the driver helping provide opportunities for other folks to flourish as well.

Ralf

PS: Here is a video about how to provide opportunities for GenZ and Millennials in the workplace that will also engage all the other generations.

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If you are a GenX or BabyBoomer business owner/ leader you may want to read this post


If you are a GenX or BabyBoomer business owner/ leader you may want to read this post 

I am just flabbergasted by how many fellow business leaders belonging to the above-mentioned generations who are not embracing Millennials in the work place. They are outright shunning them because Millennials are “lazy, entitled, pampered, unreliable, immature” and so many other not so nice things.

This is just crazy! GenX and BabyBoomer business leaders behave a bit like the last generation of dinosaurs – they may not know it, but they will go extinct eventually. Millennials represent the majority of the workforce already. It will not be long before GenZ folks are knocking at business doors seeking employment. Are you going to shun them also?

The most resistant business managers claim the following two key reasons why they do not want to adapt their businesses to be more inviting to younger folks:

  • Managing Millennials costs too much money. They need more management resources and attention.
    Counter argument is that you will need plenty of structure and training anyway as your organization grows.
  • “If I spend more money on training new people, I will need to pay them more, or they will leave me for better employment.”
    Counter argument is that what if you don’t pay more or train and the people stay anyway?

Here are the top three things Millennials look for joining and staying at an organization:

  1. Purpose: You provide a reason why they should spend their time at your place. “Is my time spent here worth my time and am I making an impact?”
  2. Structure and career path: You provide a clear career path through your organization and you interview and onboard with plenty of documented structure.
  3. Flexibility: You provide a work place where productivity, creativity, and collaboration is rewarded – not just butt in chair time.

Do those three items cost you in preparation and execution time? Absolutely. Realize though that you are not only doing this for this one generation. Employee research has proven that the former generations love and embrace those key items as well – they were groomed to not actively ask for them. Millennials on the other hand listened to their parents and thus do not expect company loyalty and they have been immersed in technology from an early age.

The younger workforce of today is starting to displace the older business leadership generation. Don’t be a dinosaur. Stop working in your business trying to make it another day. Start working on your business and adapt it to embrace the younger working generation. The older workforce will love the changes to and you will be able to show it to your CFO due to a greater profitability through higher employee engagement, which elevates productivity.

Ralf

3 elements of powerful decision making


3 elements of powerful decision making 

We make so many decisions every day that we can barely recall them all. Then there are these decisions that keep us up at night. That is because we have someone or something that we really want to pursue; it feels right and we so want to make progress and yet we do not have a warm and fuzzy feeling.

Makes for a terrible night of uneasy sleep, huh? When we are really infatuated with an idea, chances are we may be making a really risky decision that we will regret later on. Never making a decision is just as bad. The older we get we make decisions more and more with our intellect. It is however heavily influenced by historical events because we want to limit our pain that comes from having made a poor decision.

So what can we do?

The secret of powerful decision making lies in the power of three: Intellect, Heart, and Instinct. What I mean by that is creating your version of a decision balance sheet. It is divided in these three main categories.

Typically, your first response to any given decision you have to make is taking you down the right path. Make a note of what that is. This is the first reaction to a decision you are facing. Now enter what your heart – meaning compassion, empathy, love, passion, etc – tries telling you. Now reflect on what your intellect is telling you. In other words you are breaking up your decision tree to a more manageable decision tripod.

Resist the urge to the extent possible arguing your way to a result you wanted to get to from the get go. Instead, start with your question that keeps you up first. Then follow your answers to all three main criteria. Finally round it all up with pondering if and how your decision will still look like in 2 to 5 years from now. Is it long term sustainable? How much fun will this by in the long run?

Sure, I did almost forget including the element of fun and excitement. Keep that in balance with the risk you are willing to take and you will start sleeping much better. Happy pondering.

Ralf

1 occasion when tunnel vision is actually a good thing


1 occasion when tunnel vision is actually a good thing 

Photo credit: Ralf Weiser

Usually tunnel vision has a bad connotation. I claim there is a good version of it. This is happening when you are part of a really deep, meaningful, and thus genuine dialog with another person, or a group of people.

Have you ever caught yourself having a conversation with someone at e.g. a restaurant and at the end you finally notice that the patrons have long gone, but you had not noticed that? In fact, you may not have noticed what your waiter looked like, and that literally hours had passed you by. That is what I call positive tunnel vision.

Part of it is that your mind is deeply in thought about what is said and you keenly focus on your dialog with your partner(s). It is fun to partake in the discussion and you mutually benefit from what you talk about.

A key area of this is not only fun, but very fulfilling: Dates. Have you ever noticed how fast times flies right on by you and you do not notice anything but your date? How can this get any better than this? Make good use of times like these ones.

Another good sign that you have had such a genuine discussion is that you may feel exhausted. It takes a lot of energy out of you when you are totally present and in the moment. That is even more so a good reason to be really picky about with whom you have a chat like this.

It is always a great idea to think about how much of a time limit you want to give yourself. Also, think about what you want to get out of a conversation at a minimum; you do not want to come out of a meeting with no tangible outcome. For example, a list of topics you wanted to cover. So much energy and time should not go in vain.

Tunnel vision is a loss of peripheral vision – you focus on the middle and notice nothing around it. Sometimes this can be really bad, but at the same time it can be good because you can focus all of your attention on your conversation partners. The latter can be very rewarding and provide the discussion partner with long-term mutual benefits. Here is to a new year with many opportunities to having such meaningful conversations.

Ralf

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