Tag: making decisions

22
Jan

Have Your Young Professionals Learned How to Fail?

Yes, you read that correctly. As I speak with employers every week, one of the concerns they mention is the apprehension many new graduates display when compelled to make a decision for which there is no right answer. Sometimes this apprehension takes the form of endless questions. Sometimes it appears to be a lack of urgency. Sometimes it looks like

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2
Jan

Are You Wrapping Your Kids in a Burlap Blanket?

My wife and I and our friends, Bill and LuAnn, were sharing stories about our twenty-something kids. As we discussed the normal trials and challenges these young people face, we wondered out loud about the balance between saving them and teaching them to “sink or swim.” “We’ve always tried to wrap our kids in a burlap blanket,” said Bill. I

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18
Dec

Where is Your Locus of Control?

One recent morning, I was standing next to a woman in a local café. She appeared agitated, but I didn’t really think about it as I added a bit of cream to my coffee. A few seconds later, one of the staff approached her. “I’m sorry for the delay,” he said. “We’ll have the order ready in ten more minutes,”

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5
Dec

Making a Game of Repetitive Work

Like anyone, there are times when I am saddled with a repetitive task. Whether it’s raking the lawn, stuffing envelopes, or painting the kitchen, it can be tough to make the time go by. But I  have learned to re-frame this boredom by making a game out of it. So have most of those who grew up before the digital

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21
Nov

Are You Learning from Your Mistakes?

A long-time contractor recently told me of taking charge of a building project when he first got started. Having just graduated with a degree in construction management and feeling full of himself, he began by telling the masons that he would now order their materials since he knew how to budget the job in a more efficient way. When they

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14
Nov

The Blessings and Curses of Conveniences

Dan, a senior executive, recently told me of driving around in his prized 1977 Chevy pickup with his 16-year-old grandson. “Hey Grandpa,” the young man said, while holding a latte, “Where are the cup holders?” “We didn’t have cup holders forty years ago,” answered Dan who then added, “Roll down the window. Let’s get some air in here.” It took

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16
Oct

Is Too Much Information Your Worst Enemy?

When was the last time you complained about dealing with too much information? Chances are, it was in the past week, if not the past day. Information overload not only produces a sense of stress and tension, it prevents us from doing our best work. Research by psychologists Daniel Kahnemann and Amos Tversky has demonstrated that people are unable to

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8
Oct

Becoming Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable

When was the last time you felt uncomfortable before making a decision? Chances are, you get a little twinge of cold sweats anytime you’re faced with the unknown. You’re not alone, of course. All our brains focus on security and comfort before anything else. So if you’re uncertain about something, the limbic system jumps in and says, “Don’t do it!

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7
Jun

Where’s Your Happiness Set Point?

Why do people sabotage themselves when things get too good? Over the years, all kinds of people have postulated about the reason this happens. My favorite explanation comes from psychologist Marc Schoen, Ph.D., author of the book Your Survival Instinct is Killing You. He writes “Scientists have found that we each have our own happiness “set point,” the genetic and

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15
May

Managing Discomfort is the Key to Success

It is human nature to aspire to greater things. The United States was conceived and built on that principle. Sadly, some of these aspirations are thwarted by circumstances and environment. More often than not, however, we thwart our own aspirations out of poorly informed beliefs. We listen to what others tell us without verifying the accuracy. We follow the rules

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