Mary and John both lost their jobs. Here's how they described the event to their networking contacts:
MARY: Damn corporate America. They're always downsizing.
JOHN: It happens. I'll find another job.
Which person do you think made a better impression?
A recent Michigan State University grad was clueless about what career he wanted and was living on his parents' sofa, unemployed. So, when a relative asked, "Do you want to work in a dashboard manufacturing plant?" he said yeseven though he had no particular interest in dashboards. However, he acted as if he were passionate about dashboards: He carefully observed his coworkers, asked questions, and read articles on dashboard manufacture. He pursued dashboard expertise like an unleashed tiger pursues a cross rib roast. Soon, coworkers started coming to him with questions, and he eventually became the go-to guy on the factory floor. Not surprisingly, our dashboard dude soon got promoted. Now, also not surprisingly, he's passionate about dashboards. Lesson: Act as if.
Even if you're just a clerk, you can become a leader. A wonderful leader. Here's how:
Everybody wants to get more done in less time. Here are six ways how:
A welter of recent books is predicting a U.S. labor shortage, implying that it will be a hot job market for the foreseeable future. A few examples: Get 'em While They're Hot: How to Attract, Develop, and Retain Peak Performers in the Coming Labor Shortage; Lost Knowledge: Confronting the Threat of an Aging Workforce; Workforce Wakeup Call; and Ken Dychtwald's Workforce Crisis: How to Beat the Coming Shortage of Skills and Talent.
You have a cool idea. Unfortunately, you aren't a CEO; you don't have an M.B.A. from Harvard or a penny from a venture capital firm. You're just a peon. Your only shot is to try to pitch your idea to your company's pooh-bahs.
Here's how to do it.
Standard advice to bosses: Treat everyone equally. After all, that makes policies clear and less prone to disputes. Indeed, many union contracts mandate equal treatment. Yet I can think of no worse way to manage people.
Most of us look better with clothes onwe can accentuate our good parts and hide the rest.
My father is a Holocaust survivor who lost his entire family to the Nazis. After the war, he was dumped onto a cargo boat and dropped in the Bronx, with no English, no money, no education, and no contacts. His first job was sewing shirts in a Harlem factory. On the weekend, he sold shirts he had sewn on the street, out of a cardboard box. He did that until he had saved up enough for the first and last month's rent on the tiniest, smelliest store in New York City: 105 Moore Street in Brooklyn. On one side was a live chicken market, spewing the aroma of stale blood. On the other side was a Puerto Rican deli. So the blood smell merged with that of chicharrones (deep-fried pork intestines).
One big reason many people are unhappy at work? They didn't evaluate the job carefully enough before accepting it.