Wednesday, June 8, 2011

It`s all about losing yourself in a job…

Flustered? Not to worry. It`s quite natural to feel confused when you find upon such a weird caption staring you in the face. Let me throw a bit of light on it.

Writes The New York Times Pundit, David Brooks, “College grads are often sent out into the world amid rapturous talk of limitless possibilities…. Today’s graduates are also told to find their passion and then pursue their dreams… Finally, graduates are told to be independent-minded and to express their inner spirit. But, of course, doing your job well often means suppressing yourself…”

What Brooks says is nothing foreign to us. You must have been told umpteen times to pursue our heart`s passion or do a job that we are passionate about. Similarly, you must have imparted the same piece of advice to the younger people. Of course, you must have assumed the air of a tremendously successful man who has been pursuing his heart`s dreams all his life.

But, it`s not about what you can achieve for yourself. Rather, it`s about what value you can create as a member of a team in realizing the mission of your company. Even the most independent CEOs will say that the mission is bigger than the self.

As Brooks says you are called by a problem. Probably one that defies solution. You are hired to fix it. In all fairness, it may not be something you are passionate about. But if you are willing to make a serious commitment to solving that particular problem by drawing on your education, experience and maybe intuition, it defines your success and growth in the company.

If you lose yourself in your job finding a solution, striving for a cause, then you have the edge that helps you succeed in whatever job you do at almost any company.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Always avoid the acute angle

Most of us are such know-alls that we love to argue and drive our point home. While we are perfectly aware that it hurts so much to be contradicted and dismissed, we continue to embroil ourselves in arguments day in day out perhaps in the hope of savouring the (malicious) happiness of contradicting another person.

Generally, we have to remember, more often than not, what hurts us hurts others too. Or what we find unpleasant or painful is nearly so to others too most of the time. What I mean is if being defeated in an argument hurts us, it`s no less painful to others when they are at the loser`s end.

As a manager, it`s important for you to learn to use your debating skills sparingly, if at all.
Putting your foot down and keep asserting yourself all the time won`t win you many friends. In fact, it will make people regard you as an arrogant, self-opinionated asshole. Riding roughshod over others` emotions is as dangerous in your organization as it is at your home.

If you find yourself being dragged into a heated argument, try to extricate yourself from that situation. You need to learn that, as far as an argument is concerned, to yield is the next best strategy where avoidance doesn`t work.

I don`t advise you to remain tight-lipped where you know that you`re right. But if the other person keeps contradicting you in an argumentative spirit and you are tempted to counter him, you must be able to foresee the end of it, that is one of you is going to have to eat the crow, or to taste the bitter fruit of defeat. So just give in and avoid the confrontation.

Remember pride is the never failing vice of fools and that you can never win an argument. I say so because, if you lose the argument, you resent the other`s victory over you; if he or she loses it, they are going to resent yours too.

You are really stupid if you fail to realize that arguments can wreck interpersonal relationships. If you want to argue yourself to professional failure, the recipe is to get into as many arguments as possible with your superiors, peers as well as your subordinates. Got my point?