How NOT To Deal With Stress

We’ve all gone through it some time or the other in our lives – Stress. It creeps up on us everywhere from work to home and in some odd cases, even in our sleep. Stress can also manifest itself in different ways depending on the person – while some may experience headaches; others may suffer more extreme symptoms like panic attacks, shortness of breath, etc. And the solution to all these stress related symptoms are as numerous as the sources of stress themselves. There are numerous tips, home remedies and self help books that address stress management .   In this article however, we are going to look at some things that one must NOT do to deal with stress:

Stress Management Training   is a core program  in our soft skills training and corporate training that is gaining new found respect amongst corporations as they understand the cost of playing at high stakes in a competitive industry and the need to equip their employees with the nerves to handle it.

  •  Smoking – This is quite self-explanatory and hardly needs expounding upon. Smoking is bad for one’s health even if they have zero stress in their lives. Smoking is unhealthy, period!
  •  Pills or Drugs – While there are legitimate medications that one can take to relieve themselves of a head ache or so, frequent use of such medications cause the body to adjust chemical levels within itself to make it dependent on the medication while simultaneously lowering the body’s own immune system.
  • Alcohol – While some alcohol in moderation might help to calm the nerves and steady oneself, ‘drowning’ oneself in it to block out the stress is dangerous to the liver. Besides it seems counter-intuitive to cause the body physical stress in order to deal with mental stress.  ‘Managing Stress Can Improve Company Performance’  is an article on effective stress management techniques.
  •  Withdrawing from people – Sometimes stress causes us to go into a shell. Occasionally some personal space and time might be helpful. But talking to someone also helps in coping with stress better. Otherwise internalizing our stress with no external vent or outlet is not healthy for us.
  • Excessive media – Some people immerse themselves into exorbitant hours of TV or video gaming in order to be able to deal with all the stress. These media devices actually cause more stimulation to the brain preventing it from slowing down and allowing oneself to process and reflect over the stress.

For more interesting articles/blogs on stress management, please follow these links:

Can Tough Feedback make you Tougher  

Stress – A Leadership Non-Essential  

 

Essentials of any Leadership Training Program

Much has been said about Leadership and its essential principles. Leadership has always been a vital aspect of human interaction and dynamics since time immemorial. History has seen its fair share of leadership in every realm of life. Leadership principles have been expounded upon, especially in the business field in leadership training and development programs these days. But leadership has a facet to it that is often overlooked even by these modern leadership training programs – Emotional Intelligence. In this article we will look at some important aspects of EI within the broader subject of leadership principles. These are extensively covered in our Emotional Intelligence Training programs.

Being Self-Aware

Being a self-aware leader does not mean being conscious of oneself. But in fact being keenly aware of one’s own strengths and weaknesses while also understanding how one’s actions and decisions may have an impact on people around them. Many leadership development training programs don’t focus on this internal awareness enough but tend to lean toward the more surface skills and distinctions.

Self-Disciplined

Being a good leader also requires incredible amounts of discipline. This discipline may stretch over emotions, values and accountability. Even leaders are susceptible to being overtaken or overwhelmed by emotions and thus need their leadership management to be grounded in intrinsically good values and by being held accountable by others.

Self-Motivated

Leaders have to be self-driven in order to find within themselves the strength to keep pushing and persevering even when the situation is dire. Keeping their eyes firmly fixed on the objectives, plan and execution is vitally important to stay motivated. Staying positive or optimistic is crucial to being motivated. A leader has to find a way to stay focused on the accomplishments and opportunities instead of get distracted by the problems and setbacks. Every member of executive leadership needs to be conscious of this.

Despite the varying qualities of a leader, Leadership Training Programs are designed to equip leaders with cutting edge tools and resources for progress and development. To see how companies handle this, please read through the following link – Why Great Leaders Never Stop Training

For more information on Leadership Training Programs, please refer to the following articles/blogs:

3 Steps to Enhance Your Leadership 

How to Develop Coaching Skills in Leadership Roles

The Paradigm of Indian Leadership

The Art of Giving Knock-Out Sales Presentations

All the hard work has finally paid off – You did your market research, analyzed the economy, zeroed in on the target audience and did your homework on the customer. They took the bait and now you’re sitting in their conference room, ready to give your pitch. If there is ever a time to pull out your best sales strategies, it is now! There is just one problem – your customer has probably heard at least ten other sales pitches that day, so why should you think he would remember yours?

Turns out that there are simple tricks that can be employed to make your pitch stand out. Lets look at just three that will do the trick:

Develop Rapport

This is the most potent requirement of sales training and customer service training. Remember that part about ‘doing your homework on the customer’? Well this is the time to showcase what you’ve learnt about them. Asking questions about the company, their portfolio of products and services will show the customer that you’re interested enough in them to have actually looked them up and done some research. Comments and conversations on similar and related topics that are relative to their company and business also creates plenty of common ground upon which to develop equity or rapport.’Five Strategies for a Winning Sales Presentation’  is an article to help you effectively clinch the deal.

Asking Leading Questions

This line of questioning is quite different from the earlier questions about the company itself. While those were posed to establish common ground, this line of questioning is more to ‘fish’ for information – on your customer’s interests, needs, likes and dislikes. While this gives you insight into the customer’s head, it is also setting up a foundation for you to build your sales pitch on and possibly answer or provide for everything your customer expressed a desire or need.

Eliminate Objections

While it may be normal to feel that the customer is not interested in yet another sales pitch, the reality of the matter is that he actually has some reservations or ‘practical hurdles’ in his head that he thinks you probably are not going to be able to address. Getting to the root of this is crucial to pushing them over the edge from a merely introspective mood to a generally interested mood. Listening carefully to the concerns can pave the way for cutting right to the issue and asking questions like, “Is it the shipping costs that you’re concerned about?” or “Are you anxious about the profit margins for the service?”. Doing this helps to put your finger directly on the pulse of the customer’s needs and better equipping you to be able to help them. This tactic is fundamental to sales coaching.

For more information on Sales Training Programs, please refer to the following articles/blogs:

Tips to Enhance Retail Selling Skills 

Selling Skills – Achieving Excellence through Training

Giving Your Presentations The X Factor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 Common Time Management Mistakes

Time Management Training  is an important component of corporate training where companies strive to maximize output from man-hours while cutting down on time related factors that cause the company to bleed financially.

As human beings we are finite creatures living in time and space. We are reminded of our limited time every day, week, month and year. And as our biological clocks continue to tick, we understand the value of needing to manage our time wisely. Unfortunately this is easier said than done. Most of us tend to allow certain ‘habits’ to distract us from doing certain tasks or accomplishing certain objectives. While there are numerous resources that speak on how to manage your time effectively, it helps to also keep in mind certain ‘time-killers’ that can be detrimental to your time management skills. In this blog we will look at three key areas where this can happen easily:

Failing to keep ‘to-do’ lists

It almost invariably happens on a Monday. Just as we get ready for a workweek, we realize we had forgotten to do something that we had planned to do during the weekend. And that’s when it hits us – we didn’t put it on the to-do list! This is a common error that often lands us in trouble even in the workplace. With ever increasing workloads and the necessity to multitask, keeping a list of things that need to get done is a crucial aspect of time-management skills.

Failing to prioritize

With the advent of digital devices and technology that remind us of things that need to be done, sometimes it is easy to think that our priorities are in our head and that is sufficient to figure it out. But often in a high stress work environment it is easy to let high priority tasks to slip through the cracks for the sake of the urgent tasks at hand. ‘How to manage time with 10 tips that work’  is an interesting article to make work more fun and motivating.

Failing to manage distractions

In the age of the Internet, modern smartphones today can do more than simply make phone calls. They also offer us limitless amounts of access to media. These can be incredibly distracting in deviating our attention from the immediate needs that require our attention. It is important to discipline ourselves to not be distracted by the digital world so one can focus on the immediate needs at hand.

For more information on Time Management Training refer to the following articles/blogs:

Building Your ‘Time Machine’ Through ‘Time Efficiency  

4 Effective ways to manage your time 

 The Art of Pacing Your Presentation – Good Time Management

Building Your Time Machine Through Time Management

3 Steps to Efficient Negotiation

Most people have it within themselves to try to get a good deal. And almost every such person call on their negotiation skills to get what they want. While negotiating is not possible in most retail situations, certain types of businesses do allow the flexibility to haggle over the price. Effective negotiations can be highly useful in situations like this. But is there a trick to negotiating? Is it a science or an art? Or does it completely have to do with force of personality and/or charisma? The truth of the matter is it is ALL of the above. There is a science to negotiations but it is also an art that requires careful wielding. And a certain amount of personality certainly helps. In this article we will look at some simple aspects of effective negotiation skills

Negotiation Skills Training   is an important program for companies to invest in, especially toward those employees whose jobs require them to negotiate deals and transactions with other corporate parties

  • Depending on the personality of the parties involved, one must determine what kind of negotiating style needs to be adopted. Sometimes rational reasons can be debated for the sake of getting the right deal but other times negotiations can be over nothing but the mere transaction.
  • In most negotiations it is important to evaluate one’s interests for negotiating the deal. What are the contributing factors? What is the one aspect that is the most important in securing this deal? How can we find a middle ground that is advantageous without being a compromise? This is crucial to the negotiation process. If your business strategies often require you to negotiate ,  ‘Six Surprising Negotiation Tactics that get you the best deal’  is an excellent article to help you get ahead on negotiation tactics.
  •  Its important to move the tone of the negotiations from compromise mode to a unified problem solving mode. It takes focus to not go into that kind of troubleshooting mode and instead try to keep the conversation geared toward a win-win situation for both sides involved in the negotiations.

For more information on various Soft Skills Training topics, please refer to these articles/blog:

 The Art of Tactful Business Communication

The Presentation Skills of Apple Inc

Shifting Limiting Mindsets – A Leadership Essential

 

 

 

The Cost of Clarity in Communication

Communication is probably the most important of skill that humans are endowed with and need to improve upon in order to relate with his fellow beings. Communication can be of various forms – oral, written and non-verbal (physical), but all of which serve one purpose – the transmission of ideas and thoughts. Business communications also operate with the same fundamental principle except with the added facet of protocols and socially acceptable dynamics that need to be in place for a more professional form of communication.

Communication Skills Training  is a fundamental part of equipping employees to become great communicators and leaders within their respective organizations.

Within businesses even, communication spans over various forms – emails, faxes, memos, notes, meetings, presentations are all conducted and handed with the express purpose of communication. Whatever the medium may be, there are some key elements to communication that are fundamental to the proper transmission of ideas. In this article we will focus on just one of these aspects – Clarity. This is probably the most important aspect for effective communication in business. ‘8 Ways to Improve your Communication Right Now’  tells you how stepwise which  is easy to comprehend.

Whether one is writing an email or giving a presentation, the ultimate objective is to convey a message that is persuasive to the person on the receiving end of the message. This is the most effective of communication techniques. But this will not happen if the message is not clear in the first place. The onus is on the presenter or sender of the message to be clear in his or her transmission of the agenda. Ideas must be defined and extrapolated for clarity and presented in a simple and easy to understand manner. Vague or ambiguous words that may skew or distract from the core of the message must be avoided for the communication to be effective. When beginning an email or a lecture, begin with a clear and well-defined purpose. If you as the presenter do not know where you’re going with the correspondence, there is no way that the receiver is going to know where you’re going either. This is the key to improving communication.

Minimizing the body of the communication to its most core ideas or purpose keeps the correspondence lean and avoids any unnecessary language or ‘fluff’ that distracts from the main idea or objective of the message. This is the key to good communication skill.

For more information on Communication Skills Training, please refer to the following articles:

The Art of Tactful Business Communication 

Communication – A Leader’s Trump Card 

 10 Tips for Effective Workplace Communication

 

 

 

 

What It Takes To Develop The Leader In You

Of all the places I could have found examples, the TV show ‘Survivor’ displayed some good anecdotes of how an ordinary person can become a leader under the right circumstances and when left with no choice. Over the period of a few weeks, I saw a nervous, timid and docile contestant become a passionate and inspiring leader to the rest of his team. It demolished my perspective that leaders have to be born and not made. The task of bringing out the leader in you is precisely what leadership programs aim to do. In this article we will look at some common areas that they focus on.

Leadership Training Programs   are designed to identify, assess and harness the skills and talents of an employee in order to not only bring out the best in them but to be the catalyst in paving the way for future leaders as well.

  •  Self-Confidence – This is primarily what companies want to tap into. If a candidate has zero to low self-esteem, building that up to a point where he or she can be equipped to do more things can be very challenging and require a longer curve of training and investment. A healthy self-confidence or self-esteem is a great foundation to build upon other skills that anyone can rely upon.
  •  Emotional Intelligence – Another leadership skill that organizations are very interested in developing is ‘Emotional Intelligence’, a soft skill that is worth its weight in gold in the corporate arena. The ability to sense the pulse of oneself and the team that one is working with is a tremendous skill to have in working closely with people in the workplace environment. ‘One Simple Concept that will infuse your Leadership with Success’  is an article to help you let the leader in you emerge.
  •  Role Model – Any team is only as good as its own leader. Companies look to examine the character, values and ethic of a person to assess any possible leadership potential. A leader who can think right, lead right and serve right, can always be counted upon to be the right influence and inspiration for his or her team. While leadership style is often emphasized over anything else today, the intangible force of being a good leader over a charismatic one far outweighs any style aspect.

For more information on Leadership Training Programs, please refer to the following links:

What to look for in Future Leaders  

Essential Differences Between Leaders and Managers

What Should Leadership Training Focus On? 

Exemplification of Leadership

How Business Etiquette Really Matters

Professional etiquette is an important part of a cohesively healthy functioning model within a business environment. With advancements in technology changing the way people and businesses communicate and interact with each other, management has begun to understand raising the need for an appropriate mode or medium of communicating and doing business. Hence, Business Etiquette Training should be an important aspect of the managerial training and soft skills training programs. It provides smooth and efficient functioning of business dynamics in the modern times our society lives in today.

Professional etiquette can be as simple or complex as multicultural social etiquette, where there may be profound differences in the way people dress, speak, listen, address or interact with each other. This is important because it provides the catalyst for seamless interaction in a professional and courteous manner. It reduces the risk of disturbing relationships within the workplace via ignorance or negligence.

Professional Etiquette can encompass a wide spectrum of issues. These may range from verbal or non-verbal communication, eye contact, body language, gestures, etc. With the large-scale globalization of industries and markets, understanding these key elements are crucial to the efficient functioning of personnel between diverse social or corporate cultures. Conglomerates that operate internationally are especially vulnerable to this and must be aware of local norms, customs and values before venturing into the foreign market. Another category of employees who fall into this segment are sales people who, by virtue of the nature of their job, may end up interacting with diverse groups of people requiring specific awareness of sensitivities and tact according to the situation. . ‘Business Etiquette and Social Media’   is an article emphasizing the importance of having the necessary tools for being comfortable in a social scenario.

 Professional etiquette however is not reserved only for senior or higher level administration in companies. In today’s world of virtual interactions and social media, business etiquette is an ever-increasing need that requires corporate etiquette training to be facilitated across multiple levels and departments of a company or business. Businesses must first gain first hand knowledge of existing standards and norms before these are incorporated into large scale training for their employees.

For more information on Business Etiquette Training, please refer to these articles/blogs:

 Etiquette Training for Multi Nationals 

Etiquette is a Major Focus of Corporate Training 

3 Tips to Good Business Etiquette 

 5 Invaluable Soft Skills in the Workplace

 

 

 

 

 

3 Tips To Preparing For A Good Presentation

There are numerous books and resources on ‘How to give a presentation’ and mastering effective presentation skills. While these are extremely good and useful, there are numerous things that a speaker can do ahead of his or her presentation that will help tremendously in setting them up for success in giving a good presentation. In this blog we will look at some vital preparatory work that needs to be done to pull off an effective presentation.

 Presentation Skills Training  is an important aspect of corporate function that deals with equipping their employees with the right skills sets to be good and engaging communicators. Below are some techniques used by organisations for effective presentations:

Holding Attention

It is important to remember that getting the audience’s attention right at the beginning of the presentation is a vital aspect to sustaining their attention. Most people within the first 30 seconds of a speech have already subconsciously decided whether they’re going to enjoy what the speaker has to say or not based on his or her opening statements, enthusiasm, conviction, voice modulation and body language. When preparing your notes, make sure to start with an engaging story, illustration or anecdote to grab their attention. Starting with a ‘bang’ is always the best way to start.

 Clarity

Most audiences want to know what they’re getting into or what to expect at the beginning of a speech or presentation. Indulge them accordingly. Prepare notes that clearly outline the objective, highlights, vision and summary of the presentation so the audience knows what to expect. Dragging on endlessly into a body of unending monotone lecture is a sure way to lose your audience. Keep it simple, clear and to the point. ‘Captivate Audiences with Powerful Presentations’  is an article which will help you have your audience enthralled.

 Visual Aids

People tend to think in pictures or images. It is an intuitive action that happens almost subconsciously within the mind of the listener. A good presenter must tap into that. Telling them that the annual revenues ‘far exceeded’ that of the competition is not as effective as showing them a strikingly visual and colorful graph or chart that depicts the scenario. Visual aids go a long ways in emphasizing or enhancing the poignancy of the message or fact that is being conveyed in the presentation.

For more information on Presentation Skills Training, please refer to the following link:

How Effective are your Presentation Skills? 

Presentation Training – A Key Component of Corporate Coaching

 

 

 

4 Effective Ways To Manage Your Time

We’ve all done it plenty of times in our lives. The complaints usually all sound the same – “If only there was more than 24 hours in a day”, “Where did all the time go?”, “Why does time fly when you’re trying to get something done” and the endless list continues. What is it about time that is so elusive? Why does it always seem like it moves slowly just when we want it to fly and flies when we want it to move slowly? It almost seems like it has a mind of its own! But we’re the ones with the minds.

Time Management Training programs are especially crucial for companies where every man-hour made or lost is directly proportional to money made or lost. The more efficiently a company manages it’s time through resources, systems or personnel, the more cost effectively the company operates by saving on time wasted. Hence it is one of our key programs for Managerial Training and Leadership Training.

Time Management, it turns out, is not really one of the unsolved mysteries of the Earth or rocket science that is beyond our comprehension. It takes some organizing and some discipline, the two key ‘ingredients’ to successfully manage your time. Lets look at how those aspects interplay with each other:

Goal Setting

This is the first step to begin with. To-Do lists are generally not very efficient because they only keep getting longer and after a while can get overwhelming. It is also important to set not only the ‘type’ of goals to achieve but the ‘number’ of goals that need to be done as well. Setting a goal of 5 things to do in an hour maybe more efficient than 20 things to do in the same hour. The more realistic the goals, the more achievable they are. ‘How does one manage time more effectively’  is a great article that gives you many simple, yet effective, techniques.

Prioritising

This goes hand in hand with goal setting. Some people attempt to just get ‘chunks’ of work done without prioritizing them according to importance. Consequently sometimes these are the very same people who just never seem to have time to do the things that actually matter. Prioritizing the goals that need to be achieved is the best way to maximize the efficiency of the limited time available.

Scheduling

Next it is important to actually put these priorities down on a schedule or calendar. Especially within a business context, there are often numerous tasks that may sometimes require our attention at the same time and having our priorities scheduled will help in allocating them into available slots through the workday.

Discipline

This is the rivet that holds every other piece of the time management structure together. If this isn’t managed, everything else mentioned above falls flat on its face. Once the system of goal setting, prioritizing and scheduling is setup, it takes a lot of hard work through diligence and discipline to keep the system running smoothly. This is often the area where most people falter. If discipline is maintained within our time management skills, we will discover rather quickly that time need not be our foe but can actually be our friend.

Here is a fun, albeit effective, way to manage one’s time.