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 “motivation”

4th of July – a special occasion for asking yourself a better question


4th of July – a special occasion for asking yourself a better question 

These days it very often feels like I come across very entitled and self-centered people. “How much can I get” or “How much is owed to me” seem to be their prevalent questions. It makes me think of a person who used to ask a completely different question. Tuesday a very special birthday is coming up. Not only is it 4th of July, the birthday of our nation. It’s also the 103rd birthday of my grandma who was a very special person. She always asked herself John O’Leary’s life changing question: “What more can I do?”

She was one of five brothers and sisters born to poor farm help folks in a small German village on the fourth of July 1913. Two heroic acts totally stick out. Her sister died shortly after giving birth to the second daughter – my mom. Her husband was not even around fighting at the Russian front towards the end of WWII. Here two little children were without a mom and because everybody was relatively poor they had to be split up and were taken care of by close relatives.

Erna now took it upon herself bringing the two children together at her sister’s home and taking care of the household and all other small farming jobs along the way. When granddad came back after the war they fell in love and eventually married after Erna got herself a divorce from her first husband. That by itself was a feat seldom achieved by women back then. She was very devoted to the children and loved them both like her own.

During the wartime she also took good care of around 20 prisoners of war in a forced labor camp on the premise. They were working in a sawmill next door under minimum security. Oma Erna could not stand them getting mistreated and not getting enough food so she smuggled this stuff over to them as much as she could.

“What more can I do?”, that has been her lifelong mantra until the day she fell and had multiple strokes permanently disabling her. “What more can you do?” Isn’t that a better question than “How much can I get?” Happy Birthday to our nation and Oma Erna. Please help and join me asking better questions and making better choices.

Ralf

Enough already – quit the Millennial bashing


Enough already – quit the Millennial bashing 

This week I will get a chance speaking on behalf of local manufacturing companies during a special event with mayor Kenny from Philly and the mayor from Frankfurt Germany (Frankfurt and Philly are sister/ partner cities). Main topic will be embracing learn and earn apprenticeships and co-ops connecting students with manufacturers. My key message will be that manufacturing is far from dead. In fact low quantity high complexity manufacturing has come back not only to this area. This comes at a pivotal time when old talent will retire at an alarming rate in the next five to ten years. Yet, the fourth oldest workforce – that being manufacturing – struggles finding people fill their open positions.

I hear this all the time: “Millennials are so entitled”, “Do they think they get a trophy here for just showing up?”, “They do not know how to show up on time”, “They need so much re-assurance”, they this or that. It is just unreal how much and how many entrepreneurs and business leaders shun their future work force.

In my view this is a great fallacy committed upon the folks fitting the Millennial envelope. It is also a fallacy committed upon your organizations. Perhaps it is about time that companies reflected upon the fact whom they think will start filling their open positions vacated by their long term employees. It won’t be the few folks left on the open job market. They people they want to employ may have the experience etc they need, but they are gainfully employed elsewhere.

I have found the youngest members of the up and coming workforce to be phenomenal team members who can contribute so much to your workforce. That is if you and your organization are willing to provide three very basic things that even incumbent workers will grow to embrace if not love:

  • Provide a purpose greater than ourselves. Time needs to be worth spending at your place of work
  • Provide a career path
  • Provide a structure embracing the career path

Perhaps this is the time for the companies to do some soul searching and embracing change and not only looking at the potential future job candidate just trying to “fit in”. Millennials deserve better than just off-putting generalizations. They are intricate part of our future.

Ralf

Bitter people do not prosper


Bitter people do not prosper 

Bitter people are annoying. Being around them can suck the energy right out of you. Even worse is working with or for them. One thing that should let you keep your wits together is the confidence knowing that those sour folks by a vast majority will never go far in life. Even if they do they do not do so in the long run.

Bitterness is not uplifting. It kills creativity. It does not create goodwill in others. It is not inspirational. It raises your blood pressure. It prevents you from living the life you should live. Living a bitter life is like wearing concrete shoes – you will get stuck in place.

Do everything to avoid being around bitterness. Bitter folks usually get stuck and stay stuck – not you though as you get promoted or move up in life. Take the high road and always be grateful, empathetic, and always ready to forgive.

Ralf

Your past is not a good predictor of your future at all – Find out 2 things that are though


Your past is not a good predictor of your future at all – Find out 2 things that are though 

Where you were born, who your parents are, where you live and work may have significantly impacted your past. Look ahead now: What legacy do you want to leave behind? If you are stuck in the past, and you have not chosen what you want to happen in the future, you mess up your present.

One of the most important things to do in your life is to make an active choice of what and where you see yourself in the future. Sure, where you have come from does make a huge difference, but it is not the be all, end all.

A while, I heard Christine Hassler speak at a really neat event. She is a speaker, author, and subject matter specialist on Millennials– aka twenty-something people. She started out as someone totally driven by success and achievement. She used to date celebrities and for a time was the youngest successful agent in Hollywood.

She was just not happy at all. Her success did not feel right and at one point of time had a full blown crisis: With so much success, a great life style, income and great looks, how come she did not feel fulfilled?

Once she crashed and burned she had to start from scratch. She told us that the day this happened was pivotal in her life. All alone in her apartment with a wedding that had been called off by her finance, Christine made an active choice to reach out to other gals that she thought might feel just as broken inside. It worked much to her own surprise.

Once she got herself focused on what her issues and challenges were she wanted to make a difference in other people’s lives who may be stuck in the same rut as she used to be. She wrote a book about her expirience and managed to become a sought after expert. Wow!

What can you learn from her journey are two basic life principles:

  1. Your background and upbringing does impact you – but it never means that you will be stuck or limited.
  2. At the end of the day it still comes down to your choices – take an active role in your life and make better choices.

Will this be tough? Absolutely. That is why they are called tough choices. They never come easy in life. They are not supposed to be easy, and beware of the ones that are easy to come by. They may lead to more heart ache and time and resource consuming bunny trails.

Remember that it all starts with pain. Nothing changes until the pain of remaining the same is greater than the pain of changing. What are you waiting for? Make a change and get over your past.

Ralf

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