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The 5 Pillars of Growth

There are five pillars of growth and productivity that professionals in a leadership role should focus on. These five pillars are time management, goal setting, task prioritization, stress management, and self-awareness. While there is no one right way to achieve success, following these five principles will put you on the path to achieving your goals.

Time Management

Time management is critical for leaders. Leaders need to allocate their time wisely and make the most of every day to be effective. Time management is essential for two reasons. First, it allows you to focus on your goals. You’re more likely to be successful when you have a plan and know what you need to do. Second, it helps you to use your time effectively. You’re less likely to waste time if you’re organized and know what you need to do.

There are a few time management tips that can help you to be more productive:

  • Make a list of your goals and prioritize them. This will help you focus on what is essential and prevent you from getting sidetracked.
  • Set aside time each day for planning. This will help you stay on track and ensure that you’re making progress towards your goals.
  • Break down your goals into smaller tasks. This will make them more manageable and increase your chances of success.
  • Take breaks throughout the day. This will help you avoid burnout and stay refreshed so that you can continue to be productive.

Goal Setting

Goal setting is another important pillar for growth and productivity. Having specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals will help you stay focused and motivated. Leaders should set clear goals and develop a plan to achieve them.

Goal setting is essential for two reasons. First, it allows you to focus on what’s important and prevents you from getting sidetracked. Second, it helps you to use your time effectively. If you have specific goals you’re working towards, you’re less likely to waste time on activities that don’t help you achieve your goals.

Task Prioritization

Task prioritization is another key to productivity. Leaders need to be able to prioritize their tasks and focus on the most important ones. This involves understanding the organization’s goals and what needs to be done to achieve them.

Task prioritization is different from time management because it’s not just about wisely allocating your time. It’s also about understanding which tasks are most important and need to be given priority.

There are a few ways to prioritize your tasks:

  • Consider the goals of the organization. What needs to be done to achieve them?
  • Understand the importance of each task. What is the impact of each task on the organization?
  • Consider the urgency of each task. What is the timeline for each task?

Stress Management

Stress management is also critical for leaders. It can be challenging to focus and be productive when you are under stress. Leaders need to find ways to manage their stress to not interfere with their work.

There are a few ways to manage stress:

  • Exercise regularly. This will help to release tension and improve your overall well-being.
  • Get enough sleep. This will help you to feel rested and refreshed so that you can handle stress more effectively.
  • Eat healthy foods. This will help to improve your energy levels and mood, making it easier to handle stress.
  • Take breaks throughout the day. This will help you avoid burnout and stay refreshed so that you can continue to be productive.

Self-Awareness

Self-awareness is the final pillar for growth and productivity. Leaders need to be aware of their strengths and weaknesses and understand how they impact their work. Having self-awareness allows you to make changes to become more effective.

There are a few ways to develop self-awareness:

  • Take personality assessments. This will help you understand your personality type and how you respond to stress.
  • Observe yourself in the workplace. This will help you understand how others perceive you and identify areas where you need to improve.
  • Talk to others about your strengths and weaknesses. This will help you get feedback and see things from a different perspective.

Following these five pillars of growth and productivity will help you succeed in your career. By focusing on time management, goal setting, task prioritization, stress management, and self-awareness, you can reach your full potential as a leader.

The Solution Mindset: How to Focus on What You Can Do for Employers

Photo by Hunters Race on Unsplash

It’s no secret that the job-seeking process is arduous. But what if you could approach it in a whole new way, one that would guarantee success? According to career experts, a fundamental mind-shift needs to take place to achieve this goal. And it all comes down to one word: solution.

When you think about it, job seekers are always looking for solutions. They’re seeking a way to solve the problem of finding a job. But so often, they go about it in the wrong way. They focus on their weaknesses and what they don’t have instead of on their strengths and offer.

The good news is that there is a better way. And that’s where the solution mindset comes in. With this approach, you focus on what you can do for employers rather than what they can do for you. You think about how you can help them meet their goals and solve their problems. And when you do that, you become the solution they’ve been looking for.

So how can you shift your mindset and put the solution approach into practice? Here are a few tips:

Stop thinking about yourself in terms of “I need a job.” Instead, start thinking about yourself in terms of “I can provide solutions.”

When you go into an interview, don’t sell yourself as someone desperate for a job. Sell yourself as someone who has valuable skills and experience to offer. Emphasize what you can do for the company, not what the company can do for you.

Make a list of your strengths and brainstorm ways to showcase them in your job search.

When you’re compiling your list of strengths, think about the unique things that make you special. Maybe you have a knack for public speaking or are an expert at problem-solving. Whatever your strengths may be, make sure to focus on the ones that will set you apart from other job candidates.

Once you have your list of strengths, it’s time to start showcasing them in your job search. One way to do this is by tailoring your resume and cover letter to match the job opening. You can also highlight your strengths during interviews by giving specific examples of how you’ve used them in the past. For example, if you’re applying for a position that requires strong communication skills, highlight any relevant experience you have in this area.

No matter how you showcase your strengths, be confident and emphasize your unique selling points. By doing so, you’ll increase your chances of landing the job you want.

Stay focused on what you can do for employers, not what they can do for you.

Remember that your job search is all about what you can bring to the table, not what the company can do for you. Don’t focus on the benefits that a company can offer you, such as health insurance or a 401k plan. Instead, focus on the specific skills and experiences you have to offer.

Talk about your strengths and how they can benefit an employer. For example, if you’re a great problem solver, talk about how you’ve been able to solve problems in past jobs successfully. If you’re a hard worker, talk about how you never miss a deadline. Be specific and highlight your unique skills and qualities.

By focusing on what you can do for an employer, you’ll show them that you’re a motivated and qualified candidate. And that’s what they’re looking for!

The job search can be a long and challenging process, but you’ll be more successful if you stay focused on what you have to offer an employer. Remember that your goal is to show the company that you’re the best candidate for the job. Don’t focus on what they can do for you. Talk about your strengths and how they can benefit the company. Be specific and highlight your unique skills and qualities. Stay motivated and keep pushing forward! You’ll get there eventually.

Finding and Solving Problems in the Workplace

Most people would rather avoid complex problems. They’re hard, take time and effort to solve, and there’s no guarantee of success. But that’s where the real progress is made.

Complex problems are the ones that demand our attention. They force us to think deeply, to come up with new ideas and solutions. And if we persevere, we can often find success where others have failed.

Problems in the workplace can be a significant distraction and decrease productivity. It’s essential to identify these problems and fix them as soon as possible. Some common problems in the workplace include:

Poor communication

Poor communication is one of the biggest problems in the workplace. It can lead to misunderstandings, conflict, and decreased productivity.

There are a few things you can do to improve communication in your workplace:

  • Ensure everyone is aware of the communication channels that are being used, and make sure everyone is using them correctly.
  • Make sure all communications are clear and concise. Avoid using jargon or complex language that may be misunderstood.
  • When communicating with someone face-to-face, make sure to use body language and facial expressions to convey your message.
  • Take the time to listen to what the other person is saying, and ask questions if you don’t understand.

Confusion over roles and responsibilities

Confusion over roles and responsibilities is another common problem in the workplace. This can lead to conflict, decreased productivity, and other issues.

There are a few things you can do to fix this problem:

  • Make sure everyone is aware of their roles and responsibilities.
  • Make sure everyone is clear on what is expected of them.
  • If there is any confusion, ask questions until you understand.
  • Clarify who is responsible for what tasks, and make sure everyone follows through on their responsibilities.

Conflict resolution

Conflict is a normal part of life. It can arise in any relationship, whether with a friend, family member, or co-worker. When conflict arises, it’s essential to address it head-on and work to resolve it as quickly as possible.

There are a few things you can do to help resolve conflict:

  • Talk to the other person about what’s going on. Be honest and open, and listen to what they have to say.
  • Try to stay calm and avoid getting angry. Anger can cloud our judgment and make it difficult to resolve the conflict.
  • Don’t blame the other person for the conflict. Blaming someone will only make the situation worse.
  • Work together to find a middle ground. Life is about give and take.

Lack of trust

Lack of trust is a common problem in the workplace. This can lead to conflict, decreased productivity, and other issues.

There are a few things you can do to fix this problem:

  • Make sure everyone is aware of the importance of trust. Trust is essential for any relationship, whether with a friend, family member, or co-worker.
  • Make sure everyone understands what trust means and how it should be used. Trust should never be given lightly – it must be earned.
  • When someone breaks your trust, don’t react hastily. Take some time to calm down and think about what happened. Talk to the other person about what happened and try to resolve it.
  • Don’t gossip

If these problems are not addressed, they can lead to employee turnover, low morale, and even legal disputes. Employers must create a positive work environment where employees feel comfortable communicating openly. By doing so, employers can often find success where others have failed. Identify where you may have problems in your workplace, and don’t be afraid to spend time tackling them.

Growing through failure

Most people are terrified of failure. They do everything possible to avoid it. But if you want to achieve anything significant in life, you have to be willing to fail. Failure is a necessary step on the road to success.

In order to grow and learn, you need to make mistakes. And to make mistakes, you need to take risks. That’s why failure is essential to personal growth. Every time you try something new, and it doesn’t work out, you learn something valuable that can help you be more successful next time around.

It is said that growth comes from being uncomfortable. Why? As we get settled into our careers, we become complacent. We have what C.S. Lewis calls the curse of knowledge. We take for granted the journey that got us to where we are. We forget how learning is associated with not knowing all of the answers.

Growth is a function of a lack of knowledge mixed with a desire to improve your current position. Your current position seeks to make you comfortable, complacent, and settled. You want to be a little uncomfortable to improve your current situation. The only way to grow is not to know all the answers and move forward anyway.

But this requires a certain amount of failure. We have to take risks and learn through experience what doesn’t work to reframe our strategy for the future. This is not an easy process, but it is necessary if you will achieve anything genuinely unique with your life. Have you ever thought about how Thomas Edison invented the first light bulb? He invented hundreds of them failed hundreds of times until he got it right.

Failure Defined

You must understand just what failure means before taking on this philosophy of experimentation. Failure does not mean giving up on an idea or goal because it’s too hard or you don’t like it. It means giving up your old way of thinking and acquiring new knowledge through experience that will allow you to move forward more effectively.

Failure means trying out something new without knowing if it will work, sharing an idea with someone even though they may criticize it, or giving yourself permission to mess up and not stress about it.

When you want to achieve something in life, you will do whatever it takes, regardless of the consequences. It would help if you stopped caring what other people think and start thinking for yourself. You can’t let the fear of criticism hold you back from reaching your full potential.

Stop Worrying Yourself

IF we are going to be uncomfortable, we have to accept not having all knowledge. This humility is what leads us to actual growth. Set the ego aside and not worry if others will judge you for not having a solution for each problem you are presented with.

When you are not afraid of failure, failing is just a part of the process of reaching your goal. We have to stop worrying about what people think of us. We have to be willing to stand alone if that’s what it takes for us to keep moving forward.

If you are entirely focused on your goal and are willing to fail, you can accomplish anything. The first key is being comfortable with being uncomfortable.

A young man was walking on a beach one day when he came across a sign that said, “You cannot step in the same river twice.” This puzzled him, so he asked a wise older man what it meant. The old man replied, “It means that you can never go back to the same experience twice.”

This is very relevant to the philosophy of failure. Failure doesn’t mean giving up on an idea or goal; it means learning from your mistakes and moving forward. You can never go back to the same experience twice, so you have to keep trying new things to grow and learn.

When you are comfortable in your present situation, be it work, school, life, et cetera, you are complacent. You may be going through the motions of life. Perhaps you feel dissatisfied, stuck, and have felt a lack of meaning. To break through these feelings, push yourself. Try new things. Seek out discomfort and challenge it.

This can be a scary thing to do, but if you fail, so what? You have to stop worrying about what people think of you and worry about the facts instead. It’s only one moment in time.

The facts are that your current situation is not good enough for you, so get out there and find something better. If you keep doing the same old things day in and day out, nothing will change for the better.

In other words, never settle for anything less than everything that life has to offer; after all, if we don’t take risks, then how would we ever know where our limits lie?

When you are focused and driven, nothing can stop you from achieving your goals. Failure is just a part of the process, so don’t let it discourage you. Keep trying new things and learning from your mistakes until you reach your destination. Don’t be afraid to stand alone if that’s what it takes; after all, nobody ever accomplished anything significant by following the herd. Be comfortable with being uncomfortable and never settle for anything less than everything life has to offer.

How To Be an Effective Online Communicator

Most people would agree that in-person meetings are the best way to communicate. But what if we remove in-person meetings from the equation? Can we still have effective communication? Has the technology that allows us to stay safe at home slowed our growth as individuals?


In an online environment, communication is accessible to everyone. It also allows more people to work. In a virtual work environment, employees can get their work done from anywhere in the world that they have access to a computer and the Internet. They don’t have to worry about the commute or if there’s bad weather at home because of where they live. Some people can’t commute or don’t want to because they might be caring for family members, etc.


It’s also good for the company’s bottom line because it reduces overhead costs. Instead of needing office space and supplies, the company only needs a reliable internet connection and maybe a chat system if employees aren’t all in the same place. It also allows the company to hire people living in more expensive areas without having to pay so much. One of the impacts of COVID-19 was that it affected commercial real estate investors. For years, this was one of the best investments you could make. But now people are not so interested in buying commercial property anymore.


As we live in this new world, businesses have had to change the way they work. There are more jobs where people can work from home. Bosses are wondering how they should rate and evaluate their employees. Additionally, how do we communicate with virtual employees? This is not the same as communicating with co-workers in an office.


For example, can you tell when someone does not understand what you are saying over text? Can you hear the tone, inflections, and pauses while they are typing? How do we know if our words are being understood correctly if there is no body language to help?


The main problem with online communication is that we try to use the same rules as if we were meeting someone face-to-face. This does not make sense because people cannot see each other. We are playing the same game as before, with new rules to follow. It’s important to figure out new rules for communicating with people online.


The first rule is to be brief. We cannot use body language, so we have to say as little as possible. When we write long-winded e-mails, our readers lose interest. There is a danger that the long e-mail you just sent can be received in a negative way. The reader could interpret the e-mail as speaking down to them or dictating to someone how to do their job. We know that people want to add their own input. Give your team some space to do that.


Next, you need to distinguish cues from written or verbal content without the aid of nonverbal cues. When speaking in person, the listener takes in cues not only from what you say but also from your voice tone and facial expressions. When you use an online medium to communicate, nonverbal content is lost. The listener has no idea how you are actually reacting or feeling about what they are saying or even if it sounds like there is anger in your tone of voice. While some words carry meaning by themselves, there are other words that have different inflections, varying tones, or facial expressions, which each have their own separate meanings. Avoid using words with more than one meaning or words that can be taken out of context.


There are many social cues that are given in person but not online. For example, through the use of body language, one can see whether or not someone is comfortable with what they are saying or how they are reacting to it. The tone of the person’s voice can show if they are angry or not on board with the idea that has been proposed in a virtual meeting.


The best thing you can do is be hyper-vigilant of what people are saying and how they are saying it. If you are not sure what someone means, ask them. You can also express your point of view in writing by responding to the person’s post rather than trying to explain yourself directly to them. If your written words are too long or complicated, it may be difficult for people on the other end to understand what you’re saying and how you truly feel. (See above section about the dreaded long-written e-mail).


We also want to make sure that other people are actually reading what we say because it’s easy to ignore someone when you’re typing, but not as much if the person is standing right in front of you. One easy way to do this is by using emoticons; however, some online communication software doesn’t support them, and it can sometimes come across as unprofessional to some people.


There is also the issue of body language, which we talked about earlier. We all know that we convey information with our body language, and it helps us understand each other and what someone else is really trying to say to us. But how much does this affect online communication? Do people pick up on the same cues online as in-person?


Based on research, not much body language is conveyed in written communication. Another study showed that using e-mail decreased the odds of developing friendships. It also found that people writing e-mails were less likely to ask for favors, which can be seen as rude. This is due to the lack of body language and tone of voice when we type on a computer or phone.
Essentially, when we work remotely, we see a decrease in organizational citizenship behavior. Additionally, when people communicate in an e-mail style, it doesn’t provoke someone to act positively.


Some of the most effective ways to communicate online are by video conferencing or just talking on the phone. It’s easier for people to read your tone over video than if you’re only typing words back and forth. Another thing that can help is to ask questions instead of just constantly sharing information.


For example, instead of constantly saying “please do this,” try asking your virtual team to “can you please complete this task?” It’s good practice to read the person’s social cues, tone, and body language in-person, but online it takes more effort.
If you ask a question, the other person is more likely to respond because you’re giving them power over the situation. Interactions with others can be particularly challenging online, so it’s important to pay close attention to each of your words.
In my experience, I have found that calling people individually or doing a meeting with the whole team is a good way to keep people engaged. Instead of planning a meeting to discuss whatever the next big project is, just plan it as a weekly or daily ‘check-in.’ This gives your team members the ability to communicate their issues in a setting that isn’t directed at assigning them the next task. People can feel overwhelmed when they’re given too many tasks at once, which results in less motivation and decreased productivity. It’s almost like writer’s block where people don’t want to write anymore because they’re stuck thinking about all the other things they had to do that day.


Removing in-person meetings from the equation can reduce trust and communication quickly among employees who don’t know each other too well. You can learn about your teammates just by doing a quick Google search or visiting their Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn page. Doing so offers some insight into what is important to them, and sometimes you might find out they share the same passions as you.


In conclusion, while it is true that body language and tone of voice are not as easily conveyed in written communication, this does not mean that online communication is ineffective. In fact, there are many ways to effectively communicate online. You just need to be aware of the differences between in-person and digital communication. Additionally, it is important to remember that when people communicate through e-mail or other written methods, they are less likely to act positively or ask for help. So before sending an e-mail or writing a message on social media, take a moment to think about how your words will be interpreted.

Impacting Culture

Everyone in the workplace has a role in creating and maintaining a positive culture.

This includes you, even if you’re just one person among many. You may not change your entire company’s culture, but you can create an inspirational environment where people can thrive and grow professionally. Here are five ways that any employee can do this:

Be Kind

Your coworkers will feed off your kindness and reciprocate with respect and consideration (research shows that when someone acts like an ass, it activates areas of the brain associated with anger).

It’s important to be kind to your coworkers because it sets the tone for the entire workplace. When you’re kind to someone, they tend to respond positively. This can create a positive culture where people feel appreciated and respected. Kindness also has other benefits, such as reducing stress and improving mental health.

Show Genuine Interest

This does not mean feigning interest – instead, showing genuine interest by asking questions about their work or their interest and hobbies. This will make them feel appreciated and acknowledged, which can help to build better relationships at work.

Smile

Not only is smiling genuine but it has been shown to increase productivity by as much as 20%.

Smiles have been shown to improve our moods and reduce stress levels. A study found that they increased their productivity by 20% when people smiled. This makes sense because a smile is a natural response, and it’s contagious – so if you see someone smiling at work, you might do the same!

Be Transparent

Those who work in a transparent setting report greater satisfaction and will feel like they can trust their bosses more (often, those that think their bosses aren’t trustworthy dread coming into work).

Being transparent in the workplace can help create a positive culture because it builds trust between employees and their bosses. When employees feel like they can trust their supervisors, they are more likely to be productive and feel happier at work. Additionally, transparency can help to reduce stress levels because employees don’t have to worry about hiding information or keeping secrets. In a transparent environment, everyone is open and honest with each other, leading to a more positive work culture.

Do Your Job Well

Finally, do your job well. It’s the most essential inspirational tool you have at your disposal – people admire quality work and expect high standards from others. Doing your job well boosts your reputation and leads to increased trust and hope from those around you.

You may not be able to control the entire culture of your workplace, but by doing these five things daily, you will play an important role in making it positive and fun! American author Maya Angelou once wrote, “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel .”

In the workplace, it’s important to create a positive culture. This can be done by being kind, showing genuine interest, smiling, being transparent, and doing your job well. When you act like a jerk at work, it activates areas of the brain associated with anger. However, when you are kind and show genuine interest in your coworkers, they will reciprocate with respect and consideration. Additionally, transparency builds trust between employees and bosses while doing your job well leads to increased productivity and admiration from others. Ultimately, these five tips will help make you feel happier and more productive at work!