Coaching or mentoring is a walking with or accompaniment process with a professional or life coach for individual support and learning to attain success in a specific goal professionally or in a stage of life. It is a noteworthy to find someone you can consider a Treasured Coach –who not only walks with you but actually walks the talk. The relationship between the coach usually starts with establishment of the “WHY” the PURPOSE of the engagement. From this vital “Why” or purpose stems forth the rest of the process of accompaniment leading towards breakthroughs. I want to feature in this blog an excerpt from the article of Perla Rizalina M. Tayko, PhD**, a treasured colleague and coach who inspires and challenges me to achieve breakthroughs towards success an significance. It is a personal sharing of her 7 pivotal power sources for breakthrough in life: These are best lessons from years of transformative learning and change (TLC). The full article will be published and released in November 2013. “THE BREAKTHROUGH: QUANTUM POWER SPRINGS FOR TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING AND CHANGE (QPS4TLC) Perla Rizalina M. Tayko, PhD** THE QUESTIONS: What makes a person shift dramatic moves, flip unexpectedly, turn about face and around, or get out of the box or his comfort zone at a point in time? Where does the pivotal power source come from? What driving forces trigger such a move and resolve to take such stand or surge of energy to change and do things differently in one’s life work and in a life time? What makes one turn to every season in one’s lifetime? What makes one start a new season other than the normal ebb and flow of a season? There must be a power source from within the depths of ones being that springs, sparks, spurns and spawns new beginnings, new ventures, new paths, new horizons and new territories. THE THEORY: Every person born into this world must have the power source for infinite and unimaginable possibilities. It is a seed of potentialities; it is a goldmine; a secret to unfold; a story to weave into a pattern of unspeakable joy and challenge. This power source in theory is believed to be “quantum power spring” (QPS). What is it for me to call this QPS? The “quantum power spring” (QPS) from inside out for transformative learning and change (TLC) is the surge of the spirit from within responding to the pull of the future now, for me to “be the pearl of great price”. This is a choice out of the depths of my Being making a quantum surge into the future and in space beyond earth bound boundaries of land and water. It is an act of faith, in spirit and in thought where I affirm my “life of permanent purpose” and explore the possibilities beyond the 21 years of dolphin thinking operating in the landscape and ocean deep practice of my teaching, facilitating and consulting profession. ……. It seems clearer that in extraordinary times, exponential times with exponential technologies, such characteristics associated with the 21st century, the QPS has the capability/capacity take me to higher, deeper, broader, interpenetrating and interconnecting levels of BEING/BEHAVING/BECOMING.”……… Thus for me to “think/learn/create/care/connect and LEAD” with my whole brain potentials would require of me to affirm, draw out from my QPS … the quantum power springs as the fountain inspiration, motivation, energy, expression, disposition and connection. I now can emerge, unfold, evolve and unleash this potential and possibility as a matter of choice. ….The pivotal power points (PPP) of the QPS could be any or all of the following: The QUANTUM Power of PURPOSE – this is the energy that springs from the depths of one’s being. The QUANTUM Power of PERSPECTIVE – this is the encompassing view of a “universe of possibilities” unfolding with the blending of measures and momentum into a creative harmony of change/certainty; consistency/curiosity. The QUANTUM Power of PRESENCE – this is the unfolding mystery and magic of the NOW so powerful to reveal the message from moment to moment realization when one’s mindfulness of the present is active and open. The QUANTUM Power of PRINCIPLES – this is the strength of one’s belief on what matters in content, context and process having lived through life’s events, engagements and experiences with careful reflection and resolution on the rhyme and reason of every thought, feel, act emerging and becoming a reality. The QUANTUM Power of PASSION – this is the energy of the heart in full reign of what matters in and for life immerse with compassion wherever it makes a difference . The QUANTUM Power of PROCESS – this is the creative evolving energy in touching and tasking things that translate to actions to make things happen . The QUANTUM Power of PRACTICE –this is the energy of professional practice which embodies all the above QPS in one’s being at all levels of expressions of self with self, family, peers, organization and community. Post Script: Initially, one would say that these 7 QPS would be very relevant on finding one’s SIGNIFICANCE. On deeper insight one discovers that when one is on purpose , Success and Significance are no longer two different and separate poles. These 7QPS when internalized and lived facilitate the connectivity amidst the complexity in the world (within and without). The 7 QPS releases us from the tyranny of the “OR” instead we practice and live by the genius of the “AND” We therefore no longer say : “from success to significance” nor “ success or significance”. Rather, we proclaim a breakthrough : Success AND Significance that springs from transformative learning and change through the 7QPS. _____________________________ **Dr. Perla Rizalina M. Tayko is an international consultant in Human Organization Development. She is the Program Director MMOD/PHD in OD of the Graduate School of Business, Assumption University, Thailand. Dr. Tayko is the first recipient of the Richard Beckard Award of the International Organization Development Association (IODA) given on the 17th IODA World Conference in Santiago Chile […]
During a recent visit to a friend’s office, I observed an employee being berated by another whom I assume is the supervisor. How does one feel when being rebuked and criticized in the presence of others? It is outright humiliating, demotivating and unproductive. So why do we, as leaders, keep on doing it? We all have a choice of being directive or supportive. Some would choose to be directive for it involves … clearly telling people what to do, how to do it, where to do it, and when to do it, and then closely supervising our peoples’ performance. While others would feel comfortable being supportive … for it involves … listening to people, providing support and encouragement for their efforts, and then facilitating their involvement in problem solving and decision-making. Which ever of the two behaviors – directive or supportive – suits us, we can further modify these behaviors with our style of communication. We can select the communication style that best fits us or more important fits the situation. Our style of communication can be Directing, Coaching, Supporting or Delegating. In directing, people need to be told specifically and monitored regularly on what they are doing or assigned to do. The communication is one way. It will work for both the leader and the follower when constant reinforcing and corrective feedback is forthcoming. Basically the leader identifies problems, makes decision and announces to follower and the leader expects implementation. The leader chooses this style when he realizes that the follower needs clear goals, role responsibilities, direction and training. Coaching here is more of selling ideas that may help over come difficulties, blocks and set – backs. Depending on the situation, followers will still need some degree of guidance. So the leader still makes decision through discussion and persuasion. Communication is two ways here. Supporting takes place when the follower is more confident in being independent. The leader gives support after listening to advice and suggestions from follower. Here too the communication is a give and take. Delegating comes with the maturity of the follower. The leader defines the problem and passes on the solving and decision making to the follower. Communication is more straight forward and to the point. The situation I observed at my friend’s office could have been handled in a more civilized manner, had the leader/supervisor utilized the appropriate leadership style.
Joachim Sauer, President of the German Association of Human Resources Managers (BPM) has developed together with Prof. Alexander Cisik, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics of the University of Applied Sciences Niederrhein, Germany, ten theses on the topic “Leadership in Crisis”. They intend to start with their ten theses a discussion on leadership, an issue that has a major impact on any economy. Sauer states: “For good leadership, we don’t need those who are strong in their subject/profession, are already working since many years with the company and are flexible. We need leaders that have social competence, empathy and the capability to reflect.” Below are Sauer’s and Cisik’s ten theses on the current status of leadership in Germany: Thesis 1): Often, the wrong people are in leadership positions. Often those are promoted to leadership positions who have strong specialist skills, have been with the company for a long time and are assertive. However, in the promotion process of the candidates, the social competence, empathy and the ability to reflect are more or less ignored. Thesis 2): There are no real alternatives to a career as a leader. Most of the career paths are aiming at high leadership positions while careers as specialists or project leaders are perceived as clearly less valuable (and less paid). Thesis 3): Leaders lack trust. Trust is the foundation for good leadership. You can grow trust through effective communication. However, many leaders don’t possess good soft (emotional) and communication skills. Thesis 4): Leadership is too “German”. Many leaders in Germany lack a deep understanding of cultural differences (despite their experience abroad and their international contacts). Thesis 5): Leadership is too “male”. Although in recent years more women have been promoted to leadership positions, the huge majority of leadership positions in Germany is held by men. Thesis 6): Leadership is too conventional. Men are mainly thinking first with their head and not with their heart. They act based on informations and facts and are efficiency-oriented. However, too much of rational thinking might lead to management and leadership mistakes, because emotions play an important role. Thesis 7): Leadership lacks clarity. Goals and values have to be clearly defined. Responsibilities and expectations must be clear; open communication is important. Thesis 8): Success in leadership cannot be guaranteed. The complexity of economic, technical, and social processes, the high number of players, and fast changing economies make it impossible to lead only with one leadership model. A leadership culture that is also suitable for crisis situations needs to be developed. Thesis 9): Failing leaders face too rarely the consequences. A new study shows: as long as the operative result (financial numbers) is acceptable, the failure of leaders is too seldom identified, named and punished. Too often, leaders get away with their poor leadership performance. Thesis 10): Leadership competence can be learned only to a certain extent. Although many leadership competencies can be learned, it is crucial that a person is willing to lead and has leadership talent. The ten theses have been developed from a German perspective. Nevertheless, I believe they offer “food for thought” also in other countries. Don’t you agree?
The global lifestyle now is quite different from the lifestyle we used to have 10-20 years ago where the use of phone calls, text messages, and emails seemed to be the fastest means of communication. Today, we recognize the importance of the Internet and its interconnected capacity to keep individuals in touch with each other from different parts of the world by sharing their up to date profile through what we call ” Social Network”. I got myself signed up for a few social networks, not to gain more friends but to keep track with my family and old folks that I have not met for years. In the past, people’s wish was to read other people’s mind and now with the help of Social Network, it is a dream come true. Like Facebook for instance, individuals express their thoughts, opinions, share pictures, check-in location, report news, and interact without barriers with real time information. Thanks to Wifi, Internet usage could be free of charge or paid on a monthly basis with an affordable fee. But how Social Network transformed business communication to the new level is quite interesting. Many companies embraced the use of Social Media through teleconference, live chat, company photo updates (Pinterest), tweet statements (Twitter)etc. It also increases interaction means with the public and selected groups of people (Facebook). Besides, Social Media is used to advertise products and services for free. This helps the producer or seller to interact directly with consumers or buyers, at the same time feeding valuable information to the public. How Social Media changed the way we communicate? The common six business communication barriers are: complex messages, withholding information, different status, ineffective communication processes, lack of trust, and, language barriers. Through Social Network, messages became simple and easy to understand. Information is shared and given easy access to public or clients. Employees, clients, all stakeholders, and the public are encouraged to give feedback either to respond to the topic posted, like or share the post, or even create their own post to reason out their opinion on certain topics. Communication process cut short where direct interactions and conversation occur through Social Network. Involvement of people and the public can increase trust levels due to open communication. Language had been a major problem, but now with a translate button or translate language applications in Social Network, people get a quick or rough translation at their finger tips. No matter how effective Social Network may be, many still prefer other means of communication. Businesses should be able to determine and reach out to their clients and the public the most effective ways to communicate with them. Clients sometime prefer face-to-face, formal letter, written memo, or simply an email. I believe social network has changed the way we live, but never forget that the first means of communication is to really talk to someone personally, where stories and facial expressions are shared among people you interact with.
The lotus is one of my favorite flowers. My fascination with the beauty and uniqueness of this plant started when I was a high school student and every morning we would pass by a railway track. Beside this track was a dirty pond filled with lotus plants whose pink and white flowers bloomed kissed by the morning sun and unstained by the water and the dirt. It was a sight I would look forward to everyday. I was simply and always amazed its ability to thrive and blossom above polluted waters. The lotus is a mythological plant and is considered a mythological incarnation of Lotis. Its leaf and stem surfaces are coated in a wax that is super-hydrophobic, meaning it repels water, insects, contaminants, etc. This hydrophobic adaptation is referred to as the “lotus effect” and has inspired many products such as nano coatings in paints, fabrics and roof tiles. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lotus_plant,) In his book, “The Lotus Effect”, Pavel Somov, PhD says that the “self-cleaning of the lotus exemplifies an empowering narrative of integrity. It manages to remain itself, pure and affected, and to grow to its fullest amid the impurity of its circumstance. In his book, he discusses about “surviving from the stream of information, about not getting drowned in it … cultivating a lotus-like capacity for self-cleaning from informational residue that stands in the way of our growth and well-being. (Somov,P. 2010. The Lotus Effect. Canada: New Harbinger Publications) Integrity is a challenge in today’s world, both at the personal level and at the group levels (team, organization, society, global levels). How do we choose to keep well-informed and at the same time being able to self-protect our personal integrity in the midst of challenges? How do our organizations strive to live up to its Organization Purpose while responding to the influx of the demands of rapid change? How do we nurture our personal and organizational integrity that results to personal and organizational wellness? Are people in our organizations able to live their personal integrity because the organization itself nurtures its organizational purpose? Or is there an individual-institutional challenge? Early on in my life, that “lotus pond” fascination led me to reflect to live my life like the lotus-blooming in any circumstance, no matter what the pond is. It means living what I believe inbecause I have the innate power to choose to be the best that I am and what I can be. This is my personal compass in keeping my balance and nurturing wellness. I am also challenged and inspired by countless life stories from people from all walks of life, roles and race who stand up and live this “lotus effect”. We live and hear about “the daily unsung heroes”. I am also witnessing the birth and growth of new or “renewed” organizations who take up the Integrity and “wellness” challenge. These are individuals and organizations that live up to their purpose. They KNOW. They BELIEVE. They ACT. They CARE. THERE IS HOPE. Photo Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/65798313@N06/6404961855/sizes/n/in/photostream/
When I was 12 years old I participated in a Boy Scout event where I had to chair a meeting. On that day I lost my confidence when I went up the stage and an elder scoutmaster ran up to me and instructed me to zip up my pants. The audience had a good laugh. I managed to get through that evening and for a long time after that dreadful incident, I never wanted to participate in any kind of workshop or training, where I had to stand up and communicate. This lack of confidence hit me hard, not only where I had to stand up to present myself, but also in the overall communication aspect in life. I spoke to very few people who came into my life, including family members. The worst part of it was that I was getting used to it and thought of it as the norm in my life. In 1987, exactly 22 years after that incident, I enrolled in a Communication and Human Relations Course in Singapore. It was a 12-week program that met once every week and at every session the participants had to stand up in front of the group and present. I was determined to come out of my shell and built up my self-esteem. It was an uphill battle in the first couple of weeks but through encouragement, recognition and good coaching, I was able to come out my inhibition, became a more confident communicator, gained friends more easily, smiled more and was content with my achievement. So was the case with many of the participants in the program, they were all getting out of their comfort zones and overcoming fear. The confidence also helped me to put my stress and worry in the proper perspective and gain a more positive outlook and live a more directed life. Today I facilitate workshops and coach for a living. The point is that there comes a point in your life when you need to move forward. Leave behind every challenge that stopped you from moving forward. Walk out of your comfort zones and experience new opportunities in life. Doing so brings about happiness and fulfillment in life.
Increasing employee engagement is among the top three items of the to do list of many Human Resources Managers. And it has also caught the eye of many CEOs due to the well known fact that there is a clear correlation between the level of employee engagement in a company and the level of organizational performance. The “Employee Engagement Report 2011” of Blessing White, Inc. where nearly 11,000 people from all over the world were surveyed, revealed that fewer than 1 in 3 employees worldwide (31%) are engaged. Nearly 1 in 5 (17%) are actively disengaged. An engaged employee is defined as a person who is heartily involved in, and enthusiastic about his/her work. The level of commitment an employee has towards the organization can create a competitive advantage. Today, I want to share with you one tool for increasing employee engagement that is less conventional, often overlooked, and with which I have made great experiences: employee volunteering. During my time as Chairman and Managing Director of Merck Ltd., Thailand, we offered regularly volunteering opportunities. Initially only to our employees, but later on, we allowed their family members and friends to participate. Finally, we even involved our customers and their families and friends. Like this, we were able to create very big events, like e.g. a mangrove tree planting event where we were able to mobilize on a Sunday morning about 1,200 people (although our company had only about 200 employees at that time)to plant 11,864 trees, the biggest tree planting event ever in Thailand by that time. During such activities, a lot of emotional bonding took place among our employees, but also between them and our customers, strengthening the relationship with our company. While we started our employee volunteering activities with projects created by the Management, things got even better when we decided to ask our employees to submit proposals for volunteering projects developed by their own and to be funded and supported by our company. I still remember the first project where a lady in our Logistics Department came up with the idea to do some renovation work in a school in her home town. We agreed to fund the project and provided various materials like paint, tools, plants, food and beverage etc. About 25 people carried out the project. Most of them were employees who were interacting with each other regularly in the company, like people from the Sales Dept., Logistics Dept. and the Warehouse. It was a great success, a source of inspiration for other employees and other departments to follow. The school and its staff were very happy and so were our employees. And I was very proud about my colleagues who did such a wonderful job. Let me share with you one of my favourite quotations by the American philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson: “It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that you cannot sincerely try to help another without helping yourself.” Involving our employees in suggesting and choosing volunteering projects was a great step and resulted in volunteering becoming a tradition across our whole organization. The surveys that we carried out every six months at our company always showed high employee engagement scores (obviously, employee volunteering was not the only reason for that). The highest scores we got were in the area of our volunteering programs and activities. So, if you want to bring up the employee engagement scores in your company, your department or your area of responsibility, touch people’s heart. Develop and conduct some volunteering activities together.
How do you know that you are a resilient person? You would notice that the resilient person has the ability to cope very well with change, difficulties, tragic, how you recover from problems and how you react to those situations. The question of how you acquire the resilience ability, according to some research, it is believed that the emotional and physical resilience is something you are born with. However, many researches show that you can increase your resilience ability by learning from personal experiences, hardships, and proper training. You can develop the skills on how to deal with difficulties and stress in your daily life but please bear in mind that each of us tend to be able to deal with resilience in various degrees. I am an individual who is blessed with resilience ability. From childhood years, I can feel that I’m different from many of my friends due to my easy going and adaptive ability. I tend to see the “Big Picture”, the positive side of every situation, and challenges that I encountered. I react to problems differently and yet remain happy. Not knowing that the goal of just wanting to be “happy” and confronting the problems or changes in life has become a part of my resilience training that I will need in my career life and my marriage life. Growing up I strived to learn from great and successful people on how they live their life to the fullest. Being able to face life’s problems with confidence, well planned and organized, I slowly became a resilient person and I have to continuously remind myself to be back to the state of clear goal setting and stay focused. Ever wonder how leadership resilience works? Resilient leaders usually have strong problem-solving skills; they are leaders who can adjust easily in different working cultures or organizational change; he/she focuses on work pressure and deadlines. The strong resilient leaders know how to integrate thinking-feeling-knowing (knowledge) which reminds me of my former boss, also a God- Mother at my wedding, Dr. Lourdes G. Salvador, who spent most of her life abroad. Dr. Salvador inspired me to become not just a good leader but a great leader. She trained me and allowed me to face challenges with international working background even at its worst. I observed how she could handle difficult challenges and made it through. We overcame and confronted those problems with success stories to tell. A tip for leaders who want to increase their resilience ability to be able to improve their life and expand their world view is to keep in mind that the resilience skills are not difficult once you learn to observe the environment, knowing yourself (personal mastery), believe that you are in control of your own life, learn from your mistakes, make connection to your inner self, and value teamwork. I just did!
A breath mark or luftpause or, for bowed instruments, a bow lift (also retake), is asymbol used in musical notation. It directs the performer of the music passage to take a breath (for wind instruments and vocalists) or to make a slight pause (for non-windinstruments). For bowed instruments, it means to lift the bow. This pause is normally intended to affect the duration of the preceding note and not the tempo. It is usually placed above the staff and at the ends of phrases. Its function is analogous to the comma in severalwritten languages. Indeed, the two symbols look identical. (text and image Lifted from the Wikipedia) For the past months, I have been rediscovering the power of the breath… Investing a moment of my day in real time to breath consciously, a moment of pause and just be. These ” breath marks” of my day, allow me “lift the bow” of my spirit and review my day from a different perspective after the pause. It may not definitely change the tempo of my work load or the demands of my profession in any given day, but certainly these moments of purposive pause consciously builds up as crescendo of inner power and enlightenment – so vital in the delivery of our various tasks, especially as leaders. In a musical score, these breath marks are so tiny, yet for someone like me who plays music, an oversight of this notation creates an entirely different rendition of the music or song. In the same vein. the practice of the breathing awareness in my everyday life has “tuned me up” to greater sensitivity, creativity, and appreciation for what matters most. In the midst of our busy day, do we find a quiet space we can claim as a prime time of our day to breathe consciously? Studies have shown how many leaders and managers today are into mindfulness practice and how mindfulness have been very helpful in stress management and work life balance. Yoga, meditation classes and hubs (including websites) ahee now very much participated. In the midst of the daily concerns finding a “breathing space” is a treasure gem. It is a journey worth stepping into. This tiny yet powerful breath mark can halt an entire orchestra to a significant and dramatic pause…. and then build up a crescendo experience or movement in the music. Truly, these breath pause of my day steers my mind, clear offering me a greater consciousness to “see beyond” the apparent to the significance of events and issues in my life. The breath mark in music is a creative power of the pause. In my daily life, it is a breath that marks a difference.