How to Fix Workplace Headaches

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Workplace Headaches|How to Fix Workplace HeadachesThe working life can be different for a lot of people. For some, it is the best part of their life. They wake up excited for the working day and enthusiastic about having a good day. This is what the ideal working life would be for most people. However, that isn’t always the way it happens. There are plenty of people who don’t exactly get the same enjoyment out of their job.

You could still love your job, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t going to stress you out from time to time. There are plenty of headaches that come with being a professional. However, that is just part of life. If this is something that you are really struggling with in the workplace, you might need to take some action. If you are unsure of what to do, consider some of the following points of advice.

Have Good People Management Skills

A huge part of being a professional in nearly every industry is working with other people. Of course, there are plenty of people who don’t have the ability to communicate and work well with others. If this is something that you struggle with, then you might need to work on those skills. By giving a little bit of attention to this part of your skillset, you could massively reduce how stressful your day is. If you are in a role that sees you as a leader, then you should focus on improving your people management skills. Being able to be clear and concise with your instructions to your employees will see the workplace run a lot smoother. The fewer issues that persist in the workplace, the fewer headaches you will endure.

Get Experts to Help

Many people often pride themselves on being well-rounded workers. Which is something to be appreciated. However, there are a lot of people who do not seem to understand when there is a need for an expert. Although you might have a general understanding of a situation, it doesn’t mean that you should attend to it. A good example of this is when it comes to the tech side of a business. If you aren’t an expert in IT, then you shouldn’t try and act like one. It will save you a lot of headaches if you just hire someone who knows what they are doing. Mazteck IT services can help you out in regards to this. By leaving it to the experts, not only will the IT side of your business run much smoother, but you will also be less stressed.

Be Organised

It might seem simple, but so many workers don’t value the importance of being organized. Sometimes all it can take is sitting down for 10 minutes at the start of the week to massively reduce stress. Seeing what tasks have to be done, making a timetable, and being structured with your day could all make your life far more easier. A little bit of effort in this area can massively reduce your headache.

How to work hard and smart in business management

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Business Management|How to work hard and smart in business managementIt’s the greatest challenge of our modern age: maintaining a healthy work-life balance and maximizing your productivity to help your business and career thrive. The last two years have significantly changed many perceptions and attitudes around presenteeism and productivity with the pandemic. It’s a complete culture change. The world we knew became even more digitalized, with most people working from home and attending meetings virtually through Zoom.

However, one of the key learnings for 2022 is when it comes to business management and your career, it’s not so much about how much time you put into it, but how you use that specified time. So, how do you work hard and smart?

Time management

Knowing how long tasks take, and finding the time to do them, is a top skill that is worth mastering, particularly if you’re looking to progress your career to higher leadership roles. If you aren’t sure how long specific tasks take, from answering emails to more significant projects, monitor yourself for a week and take notes. Once you know what you’re dealing with, you can time-block effectively. Put each task into your calendar as a block of time and aim to do the job in that allocated slot. This tool will help you concentrate on longer tasks and not get sucked into procrastination or non-urgent admin, therefore making your valuable time more productive. Being able to manage your time effectively will give you more time to relax outside of your working hours and will help to eliminate stress.

Outsource your resources

Don’t have time to do it all? No problem, find someone who can. If you have the means and budget, working with an agency can make a massive difference to your business. For example, video content has become a significant part of marketing, particularly on social media. Companies are competing with millions of other accounts, so top quality, engaging content should be high on your priority list for a successful marketing strategy. Corporate video production companies like MHF Creative are an excellent resource for making your business stand out and pushing your business to the next level. There is no shame in outsourcing tasks to others, especially to experts who will do a better job than you could do.

Get into ‘deep work.’

Deep work is the new superpower for focus and productivity developed by Professor Cal Newport. Deep work is about your ability to focus without distraction, reclaiming your concentration for a specified amount of time. By Newport’s definition, deep work is: “Professional activity performed in a state of distraction-free concentration that push your cognitive capabilities to their limit. These efforts create new value, improve your skill, and are hard to replicate.”

Think about how you work best, remove all distractions from your environment by muting all notifications on your phone and laptop, and be strict with yourself.

Working hard and smart isn’t just about getting more done; it’s about doing your job to the best of your ability with no sacrifice to your work-life balance or business.

Things To Help You Land Your Dream Job

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Dream Job|Things To Help You Land Your Dream JobLanding your dream job might not be as far off as you think. With the right tips and tricks, you can easily become more suitable for the role that you have had your eyes on for a while.

If you are in the process of changing job roles in order to achieve that dream career, then here are the things you need to do in order to make it become more achievable.

Gain new skills

Should your dream job require new skills, then it is useful to gain them before applying for the dream job. It will make you look more attractive and suitable for the role.

For instance, you might want to become an actor and know that your job role requires voice-over skills. Hence, getting help with voice over training could be just what you need in order to enhance your skillset and master the skill that you need in order to be more fitting for your dream job as an actor.

Enhance your own personal skills

Your own personal skills will come into play when trying to achieve your dream job. These include organizational skills, social skills, and more. These will contribute to your character and work ethic, and will, therefore, be useful to make you suitable for the role.

For instance, should you want to be an entrepreneur and kickstart your own business, then it is useful to know about some skills that every entrepreneur should have.

Firstly, you will need to know what business you want to create and have a business plan. Being a good planner is essential as an entrepreneur and you will need steps in place in order to create a clear path to your end goal.

Thereafter, it is essential to be a good team leader and know how to organize a team. Doing so will ensure that your business is efficient and works well towards your goals, which will make your entrepreneurial business become a greater success.

Other skills include:

  • Great time management – to ensure your business doesn’t fall behind and lose out on the competition.
  • Problem-solving – so that your business’s success doesn’t get haltered should problems occur.
  • Customer service – every great business offers great customer service. Customers are the backbone of any business and keeping them happy will benefit your business’s success.

Know the right people

When it comes to landing your dream job, sometimes it isn’t all about what you know. Who you know can also help you become more successful in your job application. Hence, it is useful to do some networking so that you get to know as many people as possible.

The more people that know you, the more recommendations you might get and the more good words will be shared about you with your future employer.

You can network at industry events and get to talk to people. Sharing your name and your skills with people will ensure that you can be recommended to the right people and places, which can help you be one step closer to your dream job.

Walk Your Way to Solving Your Most Complex Challenges

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Complex Challenges|Walk Your Way to Solving Your Most Complex ChallengesImagine an oil industry executive having a long, relaxed, open conversation with an environmental activist. Or a police chief casually chatting with a community leader. Or, within a company, a sales manager strolling and talking with the head of project development. What new ideas—ones that could potentially solve their most difficult challenges—might such encounters produce?

I had the opportunity to see the fruits of such an approach in 1998 in a lakeside town in the highlands of Guatemala. It was here that Hugo Beteta, a foundation executive, and Otilia Lux de Coti, an indigenous human rights campaigner, went for a walk.

They were an unlikely pair. Their country had been mired in a genocidal civil war in which the Guatemalan army had murdered hundreds of thousands of indigenous people, and Hugo and Otilia came from two worlds that were almost completely separated—politically, socially, and culturally.

But in 1996, the government and the rebels signed a peace treaty to end the war. On the day Hugo and Otilia took their walk, I was facilitating a leadership workshop on how to implement the peace accords, and I’d invited the participants to choose a partner who was most different from them and go for a 45-minute stroll outside the hotel.

I was sitting in the meeting room waiting for the participants to return when Hugo entered, looking stunned. He was almost staggering, and I asked him what had happened. “Otilia told me a story about her high school graduation that really shook me up. She’d received the highest grades of any graduating student and was given the honor of carrying the national flag onto the stage, but the school wouldn’t allow her to wear her traditional ethnic clothing to the ceremony. So, she was forced to choose between having her accomplishment recognized and offending her family and betraying herself,” he said. “I hadn’t grasped how we Guatemalans have built everyday mechanisms for perpetuating the racism and inequality that produced the genocide.”

Hugo wasn’t the only workshop team member to report gaining a deeper understanding of the situation in Guatemala as a result of the stories shared during the walking exercise. These shifts in perspective helped the group make progress.

Over the years that followed, the participants took many significant actions, separately and together, to build a better future for their country, including greater indigenous inclusion. Hugo, by the way, became minister of finance, and Otilia was appointed minister of culture.

A simple yet powerful exercise

I’ve used this paired walk exercise in many multi-stakeholder workshops around the world. It’s so simple, and yet it’s one of the exercises that participants say has the biggest impact on their understanding of their situation and their relationships with others. Why is this ordinary activity so fruitful?

On one level, the walk is effective because of its mechanics. Two people who want to connect move forward side by side, look at the world together, and talk casually, without any papers or other distractions. The walk offers people an opportunity to connect on a human level, as equals, and share their perspectives.

This experience can produce profound changes. Almost everyone who has gone on these walks over the years says that, like Hugo, they were surprised and affected to see the world through the eyes of their partners, with whom they expected to have nothing in common.

Lucila Servitje, a Catholic theologian who participated in this activity at another workshop I facilitated, offers a deeper explanation for why it’s effective. She suggests that the walk and the informal sharing of stories has an impact because they involve mutual acceptance, and this feeling of being accepted is what enables us to change our thinking and actions.

The sequence here—first, we’re accepted, and then we reconsider our position—is the opposite of the traditional Catholic confession, where, first, we confess, and then we’re forgiven. The walk, she says, is like God’s grace: love we receive that we don’t have to earn.

Creating a different space in the workplace

Pairing walking and talking is equally effective at work. In a typical workplace, people often feel unheard and judged and therefore act defensively. This makes it hard for them to change their thinking or behavior, even when they need to. The paired walk is an example of how to create a different kind of space, within which people can relax enough to see what they’re doing with fresh eyes and decide what they might want to do differently.

Even if you don’t send your employees on paired walks, you can apply the same principles in other ways by doing the following things:

Create opportunities for personal connection. Some teams can be effective in doing routine work as long as their relationships are professional or collegial. But teams that are doing tough work, or teams that include members with differences in perspectives and personalities, need to know enough about each other’s lives to be able to understand and empathize with one another even when they disagree.

At my firm, our in-person and virtual meetings always include time for sharing personal news and feelings. Enabling voluntary personal sharing helps diverse teams work together through their differences.

Require responsibility. Leaders of teams that are undertaking complex tasks have to go beyond telling people what to do. Leaders need their followers to take responsibility for what they’re doing and be self-reflective enough to learn and change. You can’t force someone to choose voluntarily, so managers must expect team members to make choices and take responsibility for the consequences of those choices.

Practice radical acceptance. When people are afraid that their colleagues, supervisors, or clients might think badly of them if they acknowledge their own shortcomings, it’s hard for them to be open enough to learn and make wiser choices. So it’s crucial for leaders to communicate radical acceptance. But don’t communicate this if you don’t mean it. Anyone can tell if you’re only pretending to care about them.

At work and beyond, most people want to be able to connect respectfully with others, to learn, and to make their own choices about how to deal with the situation they’re in. This is why the simple exercise of walking and talking is a potent tool for personal and systemic transformation.


About the Author

StrategyDriven Expert Contributor | Adam KahaneADAM KAHANE is director of Reos Partners, an organization that helps people move forward together on their most important and intractable issues. He has worked in more than 50 countries with teams of leaders from business, government, and civil society, and his methods have been praised by Nobel Peace Prize–winners Nelson Mandela and Juan Manuel Santos. He is the author of five books, including his newest release, Facilitating Breakthrough: How to Remove Obstacles, Bridge Differences, and Move Forward Together. Learn more at adamkahane.com.

Have you Been Bullied at Work? Here Are Practical Ways to Achieve Career Success

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article |Bullied at work|Have you Been Bullied at Work? Here Are Practical Ways to Achieve Career SuccessIt’s no secret that bullying happens in the workplace. It is a pervasive problem that affects millions of people each year. While bullying has been traditionally thought of as an issue for children, recent research from the Workplace Bullying Institute finds that one-third of adults have been bullied at work.

When you’re bullied at work, you feel powerless, ashamed, and defeated. It’s been proven that this is a leading cause of mental health issues. But it doesn’t have to be like this! You can figure out the root of the problem and find practical ways to help you achieve success. Here are seven practical ways to help you achieve career success.

1. Seek counseling

When you’ve been bullied, it’s common to feel depressed, anxious, and stressed. Counseling can help you deal with these emotions and learn how to cope. Counseling can also help you develop a plan to deal with the bullies in your life.

2. Seek legal help

If the bullying is severe or it affects your work performance, it’s important to seek legal help. An employment law attorney can help protect you from further abuse and ensure that you’re treated in the workplace. You don’t have to deal with bullying on your own.

3. Set boundaries

When someone is bullying you, they are crossing your boundaries. It’s important to set boundaries for yourself and others in order to protect yourself from further abuse. Setting boundaries can also help you communicate your needs and wants to others, which will help you achieve success in the workplace.

4. Practice positive self-talk

When you’re bullied at work, it’s easy to tell yourself that everything is your fault and that you aren’t good enough. This type of thinking does nothing but keep you in a negative mindset. Instead, practice speaking positively about yourself and focusing on your strengths instead of your weaknesses. When you feel better about yourself, it’ll be easier to achieve career success.

5. Start a gratitude journal

Take time each evening to write down three things from the day that made you happy or grateful. Then list these things every night before bed until it becomes a habit. This can help you focus on the positive aspects of your day and reduce stress and anxiety.

6. Connect with others

When you’re feeling down, it’s important to connect with others who will support you and make you feel better. Talk to your friends, family, or a therapist about your experiences and the challenges you’re facing. When you have someone to talk to, it’ll be easier for you to deal with the bullies in your life.

7. Get organized

One of the best ways to achieve success is to become more organized. When you’re organized, you know what you need to do and when you need to do it. This can help reduce stress and anxiety in your life.

Conclusion

If you are being bullied at work, it is important to know that this behavior is not just a harmless joke. Bullying can have serious consequences for your career and health. It’s therefore important you take heed of signs you’re not being treated fairly at work and apply the above tips so that you can achieve success in your profession without fear or worry.