Being in control and getting things done using the approach that works best for us
Are you energized by having autonomy in your place of business, or do you prefer having someone finding and directing you to what you should be doing/pursuing?
I, personally, enjoy having a sense of freedom and autonomy in everything that I do. I always strive to paint my own picture of the future and choose actions and opportunities that would allow me to reach my goals and objectives in my professional and personal lives. However, every person is different, and we tend to approach problem solving and personal and professional development differently, which is absolutely ok. If you are someone who is motivated and energized by having one or more people, business leaders, setting goals and objectives on your behalf, and then having a series of regular checkpoints scheduled to check and monitor your progress against objectives set, that is ok.
Whichever approach works best for us, helping us, and motivating us to work hard towards and accomplishing goals/objectives set, that is the approach that we should embrace and use. At the end of the day, what matters is that we deliver on our goals and objectives, as long as the method that we use does not prevents us from pursuing our own personal and professional goals.
If your preference is autonomy in everything that you do, that is great. What is especially important to remember is we should find ourselves and work with a mentor what we can call on anytime we are stuck and in need of an advice on the best way to solve a particular problem or respond to a specific situation that we may be facing. Even the most confident and independent individuals sometimes need a helping hand, guidance, point of view from someone whom they trust and view as a subject matter expert in a particular topic, field, or subject. Often, we may think that we know everything and can do everything on our own, but unfortunately, that is far from reality. Therefore, if we are in need of help and guidance, or for in need for someone to simply hear us out, then we should absolutely reach out for help, setting our own personal egos aside.
Lastly, we should remember to enjoy what we do every day. Because when we do, our approaches to getting things done do not really matter. Why? Because, when we enjoy what we do, everything else will eventually be good, even if we must overcome few obstacles along the way. Be happy and simply have fun with what you do.
Risk-averse mindset blinded by the unrealistic expectations of high reward or gain
What is risk-averse mindset anyway? It is when regardless of the take we are contemplating in pursuing, the project that we are considering on taking on, or an opportunity that we are thinking about exploring, our number one goal is to make sure that level of risk involved in either endeavor is near or at zero. We do not want to take on any risk at all, and we do not feel comfortable when even the slightest element of risk is present in anything that we do or consider doing. Moreover, at the same time many of us with a risk-averse mindset also have high expectations of a big reward or gain from minimal to no risk actions that we are will in to take in pursuit of our or someone else’s goals. Now, thinking realistically, based on my personal experience, is there typically such a thing as high gain or reward with minimal to zero level of risk? In my opinion and experience, there is no such thing. What I have noticed over the years is that the level of risk that we are willing and ready to take on is usually closely correlated to the potential reward or gain that we may expect as a result. Therefore, with that in mind, I always find it interesting to listen to individuals who have grand plans for their life, their finances, career, etc., but at the same time these individuals are unwilling to try, and act on their goals and objectives in hopes of reaching them, because they are afraid of taking any risk and the fear of failing. Well, what one can expert in such situation and risk-averse mindset, with the fear of failure, is seeing things remain status quo, with zero progress being achieved towards accomplishment of their goals. The question that we should be asking ourselves here is: “How can I expect for things to change in my life when I am afraid to try and take any risks due to the overwhelming fear of potentially failing in my attempts?” This is the question that many of us choose to avoid at all costs, and instead, we choose to keep doing what we have been doing all along, without trying to change anything in our life, take risks, and do anything that could potentially get us closer to the reaching our goals and dreams that we are so ready to share anytime with everyone that we know.
One thing I know from my personal experience is that introduction of a change and calculated and carefully considered levels of risk, versus its avoidance, can bring some unexpected, surprising, and often positive changes and opportunities into our life. Over the years I have taken many calculated and analyzed risks and had welcomed many changes in to my and my family’s lives. I am not going to tell you that taking on risks and accepting changes, especially when such changes impacted someone other than me. At times it was exceedingly difficult and scary, however, I knew that if I avoid and run away from accepting changes and taking risks that come with that, I could not expect for things to change for a better for me and my family. For example, relocating from one state to another, over a thousand miles away from parents and friends, packing everything we had, and moving by car was extremely risky and difficult decisions that me and my wife had to make. We did not know what to expect, if our lifestyle and everything that we expect will become a reality or not, we did not if things will be better or worse with us relocating more than once over the years, however, we always chose to be optimistic and focused only on the positive outcome, no matter what happens. I am pleased to say that we have never regretted our decisions to relocate from state to state, when opportunity called, every time completely changing our lives, leaving status quo behind every time. No matter where we were, which state or city we made our home, we always looked for the best in every situation and were thankful for everything and everyone that was and is in our lives. Sure, sometimes things were hard, but most of the time we found the positive changes and opportunities that we were seeking at any given point in our lives. One thing I know for sure, is that I will keep on working hard, remain as determined as I have ever been, and focused on creating positive change and opportunities for me and my family, and will not stop until everything that I want and expect to accomplish in my life has been achieved.
An undeniable but often ignored force in business's downfall
Every day I have an objective and my lifelong goal of fighting mediocrity. It hurts me to see how some people do mediocre work and walk away like they have completed a task or reached an accomplishment that is worth mentioning, when action or work performed was insignificant and mediocre at best. However, when it comes to individual’s marketing and sales skills, those are displayed at their best, creating a great shiny cover for poor quality of work completed.
When mediocre work is presented to someone who can only see what is on the outside – a shiny marketing presentation – the actual work or project which was half-way completed, goes unnoticed, resulting in acceptance of mediocre work as something that everyone in the organization should see and emulate. This, in turn, creates a culture of mediocrity within the organization, because it is something that is much easier to accept for those individuals who are not willing to put in the work required to deliver top quality products and/or services. However, the dangerous side-effects of the culture of mediocrity in the organization are low quality products that are being developed/created, or the services that are being sold to the end-consumers like you and me.
As consumers, we often tend to compare one company to another, or compare similar services provided by different companies searching for the best quality product or service that we can get our hands on at the best price point possible. Therefore, we naturally tend to gravitate towards companies that deliver top quality products and/or services even if we initially must pay little more, knowing that in the long run quality product would save us time and money. The reason why we do so is, because, we would not have to search for something different or potentially better due to us already knowing and trusting that the company with which we already to business with and purchase products and/or services from does not cut corners and places the needs and expectations of their customers first before business goals and revenue expectations. As result, companies that do not engage or support the culture of mediocrity in everything that they do, tend to much better in the long run then those businesses that only see the shiny sales presentations and not focusing their attention on what is really taking place in their business, while at the same time ignoring what their customers are telling them. Such businesses do not stay afloat for too long due to continuously diminishing customer and client base, which eventually leads to the complete loss of customer/client base and revenue generated through payments received from such once happy and loyal consumer groups.
Many will give their time and money to the business that they once liked and were loyal to. However, just like with everything else in life, there comes the time when we realize that company with which we have been doing business does not place our wants and needs first, resulting in the reduction of the quality of products and services created. At that point of realization, we take our business and money somewhere else, where we know that we will receive the top-quality products and services from the business that understands its customers and values the trust that they have placed in them.
Celebrating new year, new goals, and new opportunities that are waiting for us in the new year
I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year! I hope that your life in the new year is filled with many happy and exciting moments. New year is a new opportunity to start fresh, start over, pursue our dreams and aspirations that we've always wanted to pursue, however, we kept on putting them in the "I'll do this tomorrow, or do this later" folder in our mind that we never end up accessing during the year. So, this is your opportunity to dust off old goals or to create new, and give your 100% of time and energy to work towards achieving goals set. It may be challenging, frustrating, and seem impossible at times, however, with strong determination, persistence, and hard work, we can overcome any challenges on our path. Never give up, keep on going, have fun achieving great things, and share your success and happy moments with those around you.
I hope that in the New Year 2021, all of your wishes come true, and every day of the year is filled with positivity and happy moments!
Happy New Year of 2021!
Looking back on the year 2020, as well as getting ready for the New Year of 2021
At the end of every year, I write an article about my reflections on the year that had passed, as well as welcoming the New Year. The year of 2020 is not an exception, and an interesting one to reflect on, to say the least.
My year started on a good and positive note, just like it did for most of us. We had our goals and plans for the year ahead, some of us had their New Year’s resolutions written down and planned out. However, then came March of 2020, and things have changed a lot for everyone. Covid-19 pandemic had an impact on everything that we do each day, both in our place of business, as well as at home. Most businesses went virtual, so many of us had to learn how to work in remote setting from home, while tending to day-to-day personal life at home. Because schools closed in March-April, children had to transition learning remotely via Zoom. Not only it was different and in some cases very challenging for kids, it was equally if not more difficult on parents, because, not inly, as parents, we had to perform our regular jobs virtually, we also had to become teachers for our children, especially your children in K-5 .We had to get kids ready in the morning, make breakfast, set up their computers for Zoom calls, be next to them most of the day, helping with navigating technology issues and keeping them focused in-front of pc most of the day. While parents were helping kids with their school and homework, we were tending to and expected to deliver against our daily job requirements and expectations. A great deal of stress was placed on children and parents during the pandemic, still ongoing as I am writing this article.
I can only imagine how much more difficult it was/is for parents who are unable to work remotely, because they are essential workers whom we rely on every single day. These are brave doctors and nurses, firefighters, police officers, inspectors, grocery store employees, and many other professions that I cannot recall now. Not only did they have to work outside of their homes, but also, they need to arrange and manage their children’s education remotely. So, to all essential workers out there, thank you for everything that you do, and thank you for your service.
Another thing that changed this year is that we had to learn how to communicate with each other virtually, and to practice social distancing, which was the term that many of heard for the very first time in 2020. This was big change, especially when we all were so used to traveling domestically, as well as internationally for business and for leisure, taking vacations and visiting friends and family. With pandemic we had to maintain our communication with other people, including family members not living in the same household as we are from a distance of at least 6 feet. Not being able to visit your relatives and friends, give them a hug, enjoy great food together was/is hard for all of us. Seeing your favorite restaurants and businesses going out of business due to pandemic was/is difficult to observe, especially knowing that many people lost and continue to lose their jobs as a result.
There were many difficult and challenging changes and situations we all had to face due to covid-19 pandemic, however, there were also many positive changes and situations that happened this year. For example, many of us can spend more time at home with our immediate family, our kids, and engage in many fun activities together, such as: building something, drawing, playing board games, playing outside, not something that we were able to do when many of us worked form the offices or traveled for business regularly. We spent more time outside walking, running, fishing, riding bicycles than we ever did before. Some of us were able to complete seriously overdue home repairs and improvement projects. Many of us have adopted cats and dogs from animal shelters to keep us company, and to give a loving home to a wonderful pet, welcoming a new family member into our homes.
So, despite all the challenges and difficulties that we all had to face this year (2020), there were many good and positive changes that took place in our lives at the same time. Therefore, it is my goal to leave everything bad and negative that happened in 2020 behind, and only take all that is good and positive into the new year of 2021.
I want to wish for everyone to be happy, healthy, and successful in the new year, and I hope that you accomplish many great things that would bring you and your family, and your friends many great memories and happy moments to reflect on one year from now. Happy holidays and Happy New Year of 2021!