Posts Tagged ‘Top Performers’

Welcome back. I got behind the proverbial eight-ball last week and was unable to finish this in a respectable time.Anyways we are back and ready to have a look at ‘Aptitude’..The second half of the equation.

Like before, let s begin with a basic definition: According to Wikipedia: Aptitude  is a component of a competency to do a certain kind of work at a certain level, which can also be considered “talent”. Aptitudes may be physical or mental. Aptitude is not knowledge, understanding, learned or acquired abilities (skills) or attitude. The innate nature of aptitude is in contrast to achievement, which represents knowledge or ability that is gained. Then look at how our friends at ‘Urban Dictionary’ sees Aptitude: Intuitive aptitude is the ability to understand the structure and operation of complex systems without special education or training. Interesting stuff! in short Aptitude has to do with a level of competency to perform at a certain task well, while having a natural understanding of the task without special education or training. I would almost stretch out and say Aptitude in a certain area could consider you a savant at some level….(any discussion?)

What does this have to do with the workplace or your life in general? To be considered one of the best in your line of work, or to be considered good at your job, and material for further promotions down the road; you have to be both consistent and almost automatic at what you do and how you personally operate. (Second Nature?) As an example anyone can do piece-work or assembly-line tasks- The question which will set them apart from others in their field is how to do the task faster, more industrious and save the company dollars by creating minor modifications to the task which will shorten the time required; allowing more to be done with less; and increasing the company bottom line in a positive fashion.

Not everyone is perfectly matched to just any job. Some of us are good at certain things; while others are simply stellar in different areas; both are needed to form a complete unit, however regardless of status the cream always finds away to reach the top and garner the attention of both power-brokers and management. How many jobs do we apply for because they could be considered ‘safe choices’? How many of us apply with hopes a certain lack of skill can be compensated with more education about the field? How many just apply and hope the chips ‘fall’ in their favour? All good questions, and ones we need to ask ourselves honestly when searching/ transitioning to a new position. Bear in mind that any position in a given company has been done by someone before; and that person has either moved up or moved out, depending on how they chose to complete a given task; and whether or not they could find some way to personalize the experience and shorten completion time to the satisfaction of management.

Here is where things get interesting- you have been brought in to continue making sure the job continues with no delay in production! This entails ‘hitting the ground running’ , being both trained to a new system (potentially) and expected to ‘make your mark’ sooner rather than later.  WELCOME TO THE BIG TIME!! Being thrust in the spotlight probably isn’t going to be new; expectations are not new; adapting and receiving training are not new; The crew you are now with is very new to you, possibly looking at you as a threat to their livelihood; at the very least, someone who needs to prove themselves and that they can function under pressure with little to no real training forthcoming.

How you handle this “pressure” will speak volumes about your tenure. Remember it is your Aptitude towards Success that got you to this point- so don’t spoil the moment with a round of bad ‘attitude’. Similarities and differences- next time as we mash the two concepts together and create a new creature crucial to how business should be done. With luck, (and a prayer to the gods of computers) it will be this week…… As a take-away; Microsoft is launching both its tablet and a new operating system this week, How many of you plan to be early adapters and how many think they will wait and see how others view the goodies? Leave a note below, I may look at Windows 8 within the next couple of weeks.

Enjoy the day (with alot to ‘Carpe Diem’)

Daniel

We can all be better with Social Media- How can I help you today? Follow Me and the Socially Unique at Twitter.com/thedanieljsmith

 

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To Be THE Best

Tuesday after a long weekend, and I hope today, all is well. One of the more interesting things about long weekends (besides the copious amounts of food!) is that it allows most of us to hit the cosmic “reset” button and re-focus the way we approach work. Simply having a couple of extra days to mentally work through your problems, especially now that we are moving into the Christmas period, allows for a re-dedication of both mind and body to simply…Being The BEST!!

You will notice at the top of the page there are two particular words- Response and Ability. Put together they make a third term- Responsibility; and that is something each of us swear by with each and every completed project. Has anyone ever looked at things in this light? Why not try for a few minutes- Think about your job, career or livelihood, and try to think of one reason why you are doing it (and presumably well) instead of someone else, or another team of like minded individuals?

Ability outlines what you possess to get both the job done; and done correctly. Your eye for detail is impeccable and your ability to deliver the goods seems natural. This is the part of your inner-self which is the most natural to train. How many seminars, books, videos or trade-shows have you attended to arrive where you are; with the talent to complete even the most difficult of  tasks with ease. You pay close attention to those working around you; you stay up on all the latest trends; you are not afraid to try something new or untested; and you settle for nothing short of the best results. To gain ability one must first admit that they have none. They are a blank slate to the employer. and with their instructions, demonstrations, giving you the ‘okay’ to apprentice under senior talent; slowly the skills come to the top. Most employers are happy to see that their diverse workforce “buy into” the blueprint of success, and are more than happy to reward such efforts. Easy to say, but not so easy to accomplish. You can have all the mentoring and training in the world; and read a vast library of ‘How-to’ books, but without anything to base the learning on, or base the new skills toward; then the effort will not truly be appreciated.

Ability is an invisible attribute. It is also something you either have, or you don’t. That is one of the reasons why there is such a vast workforce now, to try and accompany all the creators and innovators in our society. Not everyone will ever be good at all tasks; some will have to be given away, hopefully landing on the lap of another skilled professional who will simply take the ball; make a couple unique changes, then score the touchdown. This to me is an important aspect of teamwork: the humbling ability to realize that sometimes you need help; because you just cannot be all things for all clients.

You wish to follow the company culture and be able to accomplish what needs to be done. Should there be any question, ask someone!! Better to get two heads involved if one isn’t supplying the answer.

Response (or in this case Responsible) is the ability to make each task yours! Simply put, the blame or the credit for any task should go to the person with the most time spent on the job. Know when you should step-up and take credit. Equally important is being able to share the glory with the others involved in the job. Meet the criteria laid out for each and every task; try to give just that little bit extra (whether its finishing early; or adding something creative to the finished project that makes it yours). Whenever you think the job is outside your professional realm, look at it from all sides before turning it down, most employers like people who attempt new and exciting things, provided they also know when to hand over a badly-wound project.

Up top is a graphic which features four good codes of Responsibility. After reading them through a few times, I cannot find fault in any of them. Provide the best service you can, in a timely manner, with all the skills at your fingertips; and don’t be afraid to ever place your name to a project. Each one is as unique as you are; use that to your advantage.

This week for most is four days long. Ramp it up and reach for the brass ring repeatedly. Should you fall short- simply dust off and try again.

See you in Seven, Time to tune up the cow-bell….

We can all be better with Social Media- How can I help you today? Follow Me and the Socially Unique at Twitter.com/thedanieljsmith

What do you feel is an important facet of Success? Leave a comment below and lets talk it over? Do you thing the ability to study or possessing the skills are more important? Let me know; this could well be Something to Think About!

©thedanieljsmith

 Welcome Back! Nice to see that last week moved some of you Socialytes enough to give me another look. I plan on returning to 10 Key Customer Service Traits later (possibly starting next week); however today I thought a little discussion of how to start properly at the new gig might be in order. Lets think on this for a couple of minutes: You saw and applied for a new posting, either on your own or with a little coaching (no matter), you went through the evaluation process and made it to the other side, The company called on Friday afternoon, and knowing you are currently available with no obligations to wrap up (If you are leaving one position for another- at least have the courtesy and the attitude to leave on good terms- you may either 1) return to “the roost” one day or 2) find that you may wish a reference on your work and personality to cement the new position; always better leaving on good terms than burning the bridge behind yourself.) ask you to begin bright and early Monday morning for orientation, team introductions, tour of your working area etc.

Monday comes with a mix of anxiety and confidence; you (think you) know what waits ahead, and you wish to get started on the new journey. After all, the discussions and evaluations have led you to this point- YOU ARE THE ONE for the position, all that waits is for you to arrive. Now you enter the building…

Follow Me!

You arrive at the “Gate Keeper”, introduce yourself and ask to see your contact, who arrives shortly down the hall & with a firm handshake, welcomes you to the company. They then ask if you have any questions. Please don’t be coy and say ‘no’ as this is the one chance you will have to get most of the  answers of how you will fit in the mix, out in the open. (There is nothing worse than starting somewhere; getting ready to dive in and realize that you don’t have any reference to work from about the client, or what is expected. Don’t assume the answers…Ask away, and know that everyone goes through this- you will be no different until you hit your workstation); the mandatory tour of the site gets underway, and you meet with all the people you will either be a) reporting to and b) working with as a team.

Find a senior staff on your team and ask them to guide you through the first couple of days. Everyone needs a mentor at some stage, and starting a new gig is no different, you need to know the lay of the land as soon as you arrive; not after 6 months. Should this individual agree (depending on their own project list); feel free to get any and all information from them that you feel you will need to accomplish your tasks efficiently. If it is like most company’s, the time ‘under the microscope’ could range anywhere from 3 to 6 months; some places even work under a certain number of hours logged in (usually around 2500 hours). Ask for their history, what makes them do what they do, and how much success you could hope to see on the journey. YOU will be a key piece of the puzzle, in maintaining a black bottom line, if you sink- the company WILL replace you (No one is bigger than the machine).

Take all the information given you over the next couple of weeks and digest it, mull it over and create your own personal ‘Mission Statement’ for this

How I get through each and every day

occupation; knowing what will be asked, what you can accomplish and how to achieve both goals in a minimum combined time! Be Good and be Efficient, that ‘s why you were brought on board. Ask alot of necessary questions that will help you adjust, know who the contact people are and how to reach out to them, take a deep breath and dive in- YOU are the one with the talent needed at this point; show off your skills and drive home WHY you were the best choice to fill this position; then get set for the most amazing journey you have taken in quite some time.

Settle in, The formalities are out of the way, and it is up to you to drive home why you are the success which you are!

Until Tomorrow

The Social Media Profiler: contact danieljsmith@hotmail.ca

 

 

 

 One of the first things that you really should concern yourself with as a new employee is how you provide service to your client. I know this can be seen as a two-way street; as most of us spend numerous hours when we are not working, spending our hard-earned money as consumers. Don’t let what you experience become the example of providing service. Set your own bar, and set it high! Good customer service can be defined by the number of returning customers to your business, and the number of friends they tell of your exceptional service. That is one of the big things you wish to be known for: EXCEPTIONAL CUSTOMER SERVICE!

Over the next number of weeks; I will make various suggestions on how you can look to get ahead in your new career- but this is really the place to begin. Alot of companies think it is okay to hire someone, then let them loose on their clients without giving them a session on WHAT the new standards are; and why THEY care about the bottom line and the people who keep it in the BLACK. Ask yourself “What really sets this company apart from all the competitors; and what are they doing different from everyone else?” Remember, if you have set yourself up properly, (Mastering the fine art of The Service) and observed both the exceptional and the not-so-exceptional “at work” you are already part way to success.

The customer is the reason you are in business, not the other way around- so use that as you move forward. Study the manuals, know your product and learn as much information as possible about competing brands, and all the alternatives on the market. Then each morning ask yourself “How badly do I want this; Am I ready to make a difference in both the name of myself and my company?”- realize that as a paid-member of your company culture, its up to you to make your name synonymous with the employers, almost as if you are a “married couple” OR when a client thinks of who they should deal with for a major purchase from their key supplier- your face should immediately come to mind. If it doesn’t, figure out what you need to do to put it there!

Customer Service is not an exact science, and I used to train people to think in that manner. Good Service is a certain percent knowledge, a certain percent personality, and a certain percent luck (being in the right spot at the right time and being able to take full advantage of the opportunity); and based on that formula- you have control over 2/3 of the formula- Its all up to you. Spend off-hours observing how others work, and think of a way to improve on what you have seen.

Every customer/client must be treated like they are your first for the day. They really don’t care about your family life, how indebted you are to the bank, or where you spent your last vacation: All they want is what you can provide right here and right now. Please leave all the attitude and negative emotions at home; they don’t help in a successful business transaction. If you wish to be looked upon as the Best at what you do/provide- then OWN IT and make it your lifestyle 24/7, because you never know where the next big deal will come from; and you need to be prepared to fill that need.

I could go on with this one topic; but being successful is so much more than Customer Service; but if I had to construct the perfect employee, I definitely would give them a fair percentage of this fading formula.

Let me know what sets you apart from others in your field; and why you think your method of serving customers is the best on the market. Better yet, give me some examples of “poor customer service” and what you learned from the experience. Best examples of both will be discussed here in the coming weeks.

Until next week- Be Honest, Fair and Responsible; everything else should take care of itself and have fun at what you do!

Have an exceptional week…

I AM The Sourcers Apprentice™

Daniel J. Smith

Follow me on Twitter @thedanieljsmith