Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Love Your Job

The keys to success come from being good at what you do. Lets face it, you're paid to work and to do a good job - everything else is extra. You're not always going to like 100% of your job. So concentrate on the part that you do.

It's easy to fall into the rut of hating a job - just because there's some aspect of it that you don't like. I've known a lot of people in that position, including myself. You really have to look past some aspects of what you do and seek out the reasons why you liked your job in the first place.

In Larry Winget's book, It's Called Work for a Reason, he says, "Fall in love with the 10 percent of your job that is really your job and just put up with the rest of it - the other 90 percent - because it's just part of what must be done to get you to the 10 percent that you enjoy". Winget gives a good example in explaining that he's a professional speaker about 200 days out of the year, yet he only spends about 100 hours on stage. The rest of all that time is spent traveling, waiting, etc - not really exciting stuff. But he has to wade through all that other stuff to get to the part that he really enjoys. They're necessary evils.

You may have to do some adjusting to get that love of your job back. Find that 10 percent, work at it, and you'll be good at what you do. You may even be excellent at it. That 10 percent is most likely that portion that gets noticed.

Think back to when you started your job. What was it that drew you to it? What aspects of it did you like the best? Make yourself a list. Find that old spark and work at getting it back. Forget all the other stuff and focus on the positive. Pretend that you've just started your job - all over again. Approach it from a new staff perspective - except that you already have the knowledge. Winget says that, "you don't have to love your job in order to be excellent at it. But it helps". It helps a lot!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Stay Informed

Donald Trump says that, "Ignorance is inexcusable; it's the surest way to fail. No acceptable reason exists for not keeping well informed." As a supervisor, this is essential. In order to excel you need to go above and beyond.

I watched a program on TV last night on the National Geographic channel about Air Force One (the Presidents plane). It was really worth my time. It showed just how much preparing and planning it takes to make any kind of trip - especially overseas. The pilot (Air Force Colonel) oversees EVERYTHING. He's constantly reviewing maintenance, scheduling and weather reports. He knows everything that's going on with that aircraft and plans for multiple scenarios.

The thing that was most interesting was the trip they made with President Bush (W) to Iraq for Thanksgiving. It was kept with the utmost secrecy - at that time Baghdad was a true battleground. In order to be able to pull this trip off the Colonel had to be sure that what his crew was doing was in total sync with the rest of the plans. They had to switch planes at one point and ensure they landed at the precise given time. While on the ground they had to be ready - literally at a moments notice - to take off. Now the Colonel could have had the attitude that, "I have great people and they'll handle everything". Sure. He has a highly trained and motivated crew and they each have a load of responsiblity. But he was the glue holding all the pieces together.

This is not a drill in micro-managing. Ugh - I hate that word. It's a matter of being ready, being prepared. It's a matter of gaining knowledge so you can make better and quicker decisions. It's a matter of being the best. Everyone wants to work with and deal with the best. If you work hard, hard workers will want to work with you. Remember - you are a role model. The ability and desire to keep informed will trickle down to your staff. That will make them more knowledgeable, motivated, and productive.