Managing Anger

Lets all pledge for an Anger free World..


Marshall Goldsmith tells us a good story in his book about a young farmer who was going upstream in his boat through a river to deliver his produce to the village. The young farmer was in a hurry. It was a hot day and he wanted to make his delivery and get home before dark. As he looked ahead, he spotted another boat, heading rapidly downstream towards his boat. This boat seemed to be making every effort to hit him. He rowed furiously to get out of the way, but it didn’t seem to help.

He yelled at the other boat, ” Change direction, you idiot! You are going to hit me. The river is wide. Be careful!” His screaming was to no avail. The other boat hit his boat and he was enraged as he stood up and cried out to the other boat, ” You moron! How could you manage to hit my boat in the middle of this wide river? What is wrong with you? ”

As he looked at the other boat, he realized that there was no one in the other boat. He was screaming at an empty boat which was going downstream with the current!

The lesson is simple- There is never anyone in the other boat. When we are angry, we are screaming at an empty boat! All of us have people in our lives who drive us crazy, whom we hate with a passion. The best course of action for dealing with people like this is not let them make us angry. Getting angry doesn’t improve the situation and life’s too short to waste on feeling bad. It can only help us to lose our reputation as a person who always gets angry.

So next time when you start to speak out of anger, better you look in the mirror. In every case you find that the root of your rage is not “out there” but “in here”, you are no more a human bomb who carries anger- the deadly weapon which is the biggest obstacle to our personal and professional success .

As a manager or supervisor, your impact on employee motivation is immeasurable. By your words, your body language, and the expression on your face, you telegraph your opinion of their value to the people you employ. Feeling valued by their supervisor in the workplace is key to high employee motivation and morale. Feeling valued ranks right up there for most people with liking the work, competitive pay, opportunities for training and advancement, and feeling “in” on the latest news. Building high employee motivation and morale is both challenging and yet supremely simple. Building high employee motivation and morale requires that you pay attention every day to profoundly meaningful aspects of your impact on life at work.

Picture Mr. Stressed-Out and Grumpy. He arrives at work with a frown on his face. His body language telegraphs “over-worked” and unhappy”. He moves slowly and treats the first person who approaches him abruptly. It takes only a few minutes for the entire workplace to get the word. Stay away from Mr. Stressed-Out and Grumpy if you know what’s good for you this morning.

Supervisors frequently ask, “How do I motivate employees?” It’s one of the most common questions asked. Wrong question. Ask instead, “How do I create a work environment in which individual employees choose to be motivated about work goals and activities?”

The right answer is that, generally, you know what you should do; you know what motivates you. You just do not consistently, in a disciplined manner, adhere to what you know about employee motivation.

The ten tips, outlined in this article, are the keys to supervisory success in creating positive employee motivation and morale. The challenge is to incorporate them into your skill set and do them consistently – every day. Author, Jim Collins identified disciplined people doing disciplined things every day as one of the hallmarks of companies that went from Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… And Others Don’t?  ‘You can make their day.’

Here they are:

1.    Your Arrival at Work Sets the Employee Motivation Tone for the Day

2.    Use Simple, Powerful Words for Employee Motivation

3.    For Employee Motivation, Make Sure People Know What You Expect

4.    Provide Regular Feedback for Employee Motivation

5.    People Need Positive and Not So Positive Consequences

6.    It Isn’t Magic. It’s Discipline

7.    Continue Learning and Trying Out New Ideas for Employee Motivation

8.    Make Time for People for Employee Motivation

9.    Focus on the Development of People for Employee Motivation

10. Share the Goals and the Context: Communicate for Employee Motivation

People expect you to know the goals and share the direction in which your work group is heading. The more you can tell them about why an event is happening, the better. Promote problem solving and process improvement teams.

Happy Leading !

I don’t like to shop. Clothes shopping, grocery shopping, car shopping; it doesn’t matter …I don’t like it. I want to get in, get what I want (fast), and get out. A recent shopping experience, however, was a pleasant surprise.” – Dennis Snow

This experience showcased customer service at its best, and at its most simple. Once again I was reminded that great service isn’t about grand acts, it is about common courtesy, artfully delivered.

While on vacation in Chicago, I needed to buy a pair of casual shoes (I had forgotten mine). I found myself in a store called the Walking Company. A friend once told me it was a good store. It was crowded, so I almost left. But one of the salespeople made eye contact with me. It wasn’t the kind of eye contact that said, “Oh no, another customer.” Instead, it was eye contact that said, “I’ll be right with you.” It was good eye contact.

So I browsed around for a few minutes and found a pair of shoes I liked. Sure enough, the salesperson came up and said, “Sorry about the wait, let’s get you some shoes.” I showed her the pair I wanted and asked to try size 10. She said, “Let’s measure your foot just to make sure.” I know I wear size 10, but her whole demeanour showed that she wanted to make sure I got the right shoes.

She measured my foot and said, “Size 10 is right, but you have a very ‘Rubenesque’ foot. The type of shoe you’ve selected won’t be the most comfortable for you. I think this other style would feel much better.”

Being the sceptic that I am, I looked at the price of her suggested shoes to see how much she was upselling me. Same price. Hmm. With nothing to lose, I tried on the style she suggested, and they were extremely comfortable. I must admit: they are the most comfortable pair of casual shoes I’ve ever owned.

As I paid for the shoes, the salesperson continued to wow me. She said, “If you ever buy a pair of shoes somewhere else be sure to tell the salesperson that the arches in your foot have fallen a little, and you need shoes with some arch support — like these.”

When I get good service like this, I want to keep it going. I asked her if there is a Walking Company in Orlando, where I live. “Absolutely, it’s at the Millennium Mall.” Since then I’ve bought two pairs of dress shoes at the Orlando Walking Company, again with great service. I can’t imagine buying shoes anywhere else. And I’ve sent plenty of friends there.

Now, let’s look at what this salesperson did that made this a great shopping experience. I’ll analyse the details in a moment, but one word sums up her style — professional. This lady was a professional in every sense of the word. Her skills would apply anywhere, as applicable in a bank, hospital, theme park, or law office as they are in a shoe store.

Here are four universal traits of a professional in any job position:

1. Professionals are responsive: When I entered the store, the salesperson made immediate eye contact with me. It was sincere eye contact that said she cared that I was there. And as soon as she was finished with her customer she came right over to help me and apologised for the wait.

The store was busy. But I noticed that everyone was being helped. The salespeople had mastered the art of handling more than one customer at a time while making each customer feel like he/she was the only one. None of the salespeople looked frantic, just responsive.

2. Professionals are knowledgeable: This salesperson knew about shoes. On the other hand, I know very little about shoes. Seeing that this was the case, she took charge of the situation and made sure that I was getting shoes that were right for me. I benefited from her knowledge.

There is an art to sharing knowledge, I admit. Some customers may say, “I know what I want. Just get it for me.” By briefly talking to me, however, she realised she could make a recommendation for me, that I was flexible. Professionals read the situation and adapt to the personality and needs of the customer.

Of course, all of this means knowing your product. Professionals are constantly learning about their products and their customers. The only way that the Walking Company salesperson could steer me to the right pair of shoes was by knowing shoes and feet. Professionals know their stuff.

3. Professionals care about what they do: My Walking Company salesperson could have easily brought me the pair of shoes I originally asked for. But she wasn’t selling shoes — she was selling the right shoes. That’s the difference. Professionals aren’t happy just selling a product. They want it to be the right product for the customer.

4. Professionals teach you something: I left the Walking Company knowing more than when I walked in. I now know to ask for extra arch support in my shoes. Not a big deal, but I will always remember that advice.

Think of some of your best service experiences: the waiter who made the perfect recommendation, the computer helpdesk that gave you a tip on how to make an application more effective, or the clothing store employee who helped you coordinate colours.

In most cases of outstanding service, the employee left you more knowledgeable than when he/she found you. The new information might not change your life (though it could), but it does make your life a tad better.

Conclusion: Professional behaviours are simple. What’s not simple is the consistent application of them. Being a true professional takes thought and effort. But, once you are truly professional you can go just about anywhere.

The skills are universal, and they are rare. True professionals stand out from the crowd and grow rewarding and satisfying careers. And the customers of the world know when one is at work.

Dennis Snow is the president of Snow & Associates, Inc. He worked with the Walt Disney World Company for 20 years and now consults with organisations around the world helping them achieve their customer service goals. He is the author of the book, Unleashing Excellence — The Complete Guide to Ultimate Customer Service.

An old Grandfather, whose grandson came to him with anger at a schoolmate who had done him an injustice, said, “let me tell you a story. I too, at times, have felt a great hate for those that have taken so much, with no sorrow for what they do. But hate wears you down, and does not hurt your enemy. It is like taking poison and wishing your enemy would die. I have struggled with these feelings many times.”

He continued, “It is as if there are two wolves inside me; one is good and does no harm. He lives in harmony with all around him and does not take offense when no offense was intended. He will only fight when it is right to do so, and in the right way.”

“But the other wolf, ah! He is full of anger. The littlest thing will set him into a fit of temper. He fights everyone, all the time, for no reason. He cannot think because his anger and hate are so great. It is hard to live with these two wolves inside me, for both of them try to dominate my spirit.”The boy looked intently into his Grandfather’s eye and asked, “Which one wins, Grandfather?”

The Grandfather solemnly said, “The one I feed.”

Moral: The choice lies in us as to which wolf we feed!

Wishing to encourage her young son’s progress on the piano, a mother took her boy to a Paderewski concert. After they were seated, the mother spotted a friend in the audience and walked down the aisle to greet her. Seizing the opportunity to explore the wonders of the concert hall, the little boy rose and eventually explored his way through a door marked “NO ADMITTANCE”.

When the house lights dimmed and the concert was about to begin, the mother returned to her seat and discovered that the child was missing. Suddenly, the curtains parted and spotlights focused on the impressive Steinway on stage. In horror, the mother saw her little boy sitting at the keyboard, innocently picking out “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”.

At that moment, the great piano master made his entrance, quickly moved to the piano and whispered in the boy’s ear, “Don’t quit. Keep playing”. Then, leaning over, Paderewski reached down with his left hand and began filling in the bass part. Soon his right arm reached around to the other side of the child and he added a running obbligato. Together, the old master and the young novice transformed a frightening situation into a wonderfully creative, experience. And the audience was mesmerized.

The lesson:  Whatever be your situation in life and history, however outrageous, however desperate you may be God is whispering deep within our beings, “Don’t quit. Keep playing”.

Trust Yourselves…

The professor stood before his class of 30 senior molecular biology students, about to pass out the final exam. “I have been privileged to be your instructor this semester, and I know how hard you have all worked to prepare for this test. I also know most of you are off to medical school or grad school next fall” ,  he said to them.

“I am well aware of how much pressure you are under to keep your marks up, and because I know you are all capable of understanding this material, I am prepared to offer an automatic ‘B’ to anyone who would prefer not to take the final.”

The relief was audible as a number of students jumped up to thank the professor and departed from class. The professor looked at the handful of students who remained, and offered again,  “Any other takers? This is your last opportunity. “One more student decided to go. Seven students remained. The professor closed the door and took attendance. Then he handed out the final exam. There were two sentences typed on the paper:

“Congratulations, you have just received an ‘A’ in this class. Keep believing in yourself “.

No more Friends

No more Friends

Five years ago I happened to meet someone who was funny, sweet, smart, caring and loving. Not a single moment with her was boring or dull. We shared our own set of laughs and cries with each other, slowly becoming a huge part of each others lives. But as time passed by and we started meeting new people and friends, I was slowly losing my place in her life. I was less important now. At first I was angry and sad and disappointed. I confronted her, asked explanations. But nothing changed. I was heart broken.  I decided to keep distance, make her realize my worth and value in her life, but she had moved on.  Was my friendship worth nothing? Didn’t the moments we spent together have no value at all? Do people and priorities always have to change with time? Today, I have no feelings for her in my heart. Nor do I feel like talking to her or even acknowledge the fact that I even knew her at once. We occasionally become friends with someone whom we like at first, but soon start to become annoying. You don’t want to hurt their feelings, but you don’t want to hang around them for too much longer, either. And that’s exactly how I felt. She is still funny and fun to be with, but in front of others, all she tries to do is put me down or joke about me. Its annoying. My conscience kills me when I’m rude to someone or even have a fight with someone. But everything has a limit. I realized there’s nothing wrong in making it known that “I respect myself”. I can no longer let her put depress or hurt me. Have you ever dealt with such an experience? What did you do? How did it affect your life? People who treat others in a disrespectful way often feel insecure and try to make themselves feel better by making other people look worse. Don’t allow yourself to become a victim – and by the same token, understand that this person may need to be reminded often for awhile in order to break the pattern. Lastly, a true friend would never put you down.