The Epic End
In recompense for discovering the six ways to be successful. Our Everyman, Joe, became successful.
He trumped each obstacle in his path in an intimidating environment from bosses, coworkers, meetings, and presentations.
He overcame his internal fear, opening his mind to teamwork, accepting others points of view. Building on each lesson to grow and become better than he was.
Starting out small by not letting the world intimidate him anymore, he changed the way he did things to get great work done easily and effectively, adapting himself to each new scenario as it came.
Adapting himself by opening his mind to others, helping him build his teamwork and eventually his leadership skills. And leveraging his growing confidence, he snuffed out his fear of public speaking.
With the downfall of his fear of public speaking, nothing stood in his way. He made great presentations, closed accounts, and quickly was given more and more responsibility.
This continued and continued for a year until he became the flagship employee for the company and was first in line for promotion. With the foundation he set a year ago, he was quickly able to achieve his goals. No longer stuck in the 3 year rut. No longer the pass-over for promotion. No longer the docile Joe who let people and things walk over him.
He was Joe. The Champion. Our Everyman.
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6. Do not be intimidated.
The foremost and final hindrance that had always kept Joe down was being intimidated by others. Comprised of bosses, coworkers, friends, acquaintances, and anyone else who had the will to lay into Joe would intimidate him into not pursuing things he wanted, to let things go if they got too hard, or into doing things that were detrimental to his life.
You must still have so many questions about how and when Joe our everyman changed to take his first steps in becoming the Champion.
How did Joe flabbergast the naysayers? How did he learn to not to be intimidated, and conquer his company?
First Act: A DUD.
Joe found himself at a crossroads. He could not understand why he was intimidated by others, work, and other factors in his life. He just knew he could not help himself when it came time to make decisions, and would let others control him.
These scenes had happened multiple times in his life. From his youth, when he let his parents choose a degree for him without researching the competiveness of it and asking if that’s what he really wanted. Happened in his relationships where he would let his girlfriends decide for him on clothes and style. At work, letting bosses discourage him from trying to work for promotion and letting them pass him up each year. Letting life slight him without noticing.
It wasn't until, he looked at his life holistically did he understand what was going on.
Taking a look at himself.
And where it was going… did he understand.
Finally realizing he had been working in the same company doing the same things for the last 3 years. With average performance reviews, being passed over for promotion by management, and no real accomplishments. Letting others control him. Letting life intimidate him.
He finally understood.
He was a dud.
Second Act: Re-Ignition
How did Joe reignite? How did he come back from the rut that he allowed his life to fall into?
What Joe did was simple.
He purely accepted some simple truths.
He accepted that he had let life intimidate him.
He accepted that he let life take a hold of him and let it lead him in any way it blows.
Knowing these truths. He fought back.
He did not let others to intimidate him any longer. He built up the fortitude of his will and leveraged his position to ensure he would never be intimidated again.
He accomplished this by 1. Getting work done effectively and at a high quality, 2. Collaborating with cross-functional groups on major projects and making technical compromises, 3. Presenting to customers, company executives, and everyone else, 4. Seeing the world in others’ points of view, and
5. Being able to adapt to your environment.
Not letting life intimidate him, he took his first steps in fulfilling all other 5 lessons. Allowing him the audacity to become the champion of his company.
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5. Being able to adapt to your environment.
Our Everyman, Joe, sometimes had issues with management. He wasn't keen to being coached or having constructive criticism. He couldn't easily adapt himself to different managers and their management styles. Making him inflexible to rapidly changing situation requirements, and causing tension between himself and management.
How did Joe learn go with the flow? To act when needed? And take criticism as a way to grow?
Joe started small. He took a look at himself in the mirror and tried to figure out what was causing him trouble. While, he looked, he thought to all the times that he had ignored his old manager’s advice and critiques. Not letting them coach him even though they had tried. Not improving in their eyes as well as his.
He thought of the new manager they brought in and the trouble he was having with her laissez-faire style. He thought how directionless he felt.
Realizing he was very inflexible and irritable with his old manger’s coaching and lost without it under the new management. This rigidity, he realized was the cause of his problems. It was his habitual behavior and attitude toward critiques and management that was causing him to be passed over each year during promotion time.
Stepping away from the mirror with his new epiphany in mind, he brought himself to change, to change his habits that made him inflexible.
He changed his behavior and attitude through constraining his old habits by finding out what they were through an Actions Audit and replacing them with new habits through Habit Maximization. Knowing why and what caused his habits was useful in identifying if they were good for his career and goals. Once knowing them, he knew just how to diminish them with new, and more productive habits to be successful.
Now Joe took criticism in stride because it was just a new angle to see himself and grow from to perfect his skills. With new management, it was a new opportunity to learn and be coached or left to his own devices. He became able to adapt to the situations and those around him. Adapting to good new to take advantage as well as bad news to ensure he minimized his losses to come back the next day.
Interested in more... then check out the rest of Joe's Adventure.
Tell us about how you have had to adapt and overcome in your work or business.
4. Seeing the world in others’ points of view.
Joe like most people at his work did not see others’ points of view. He saw others mostly in a one dimensional way and found what he thought would be the likely cause and reason of others people’s actions, and not the real cause. He did not see in a holistic way at problems, people, and situations. Being set in the one angle without being able to see the big picture set him back at work. People considered him shortsighted, too busy trying to put out the fires rather than finding ways to keep them from starting.
What secret did the witchdoctor tell him to open his eyes? What magical elixir did Joe drink to see other people’s points of view?
It wasn’t magic that helped Joe see the whole picture. It was the way he came to look at things. Instead of just looking at situations and people in only his point of view. He looked at it, as if he was outside himself looking on everything from above. With this new perspective he could see how each piece moved to affect all the others. He saw the cause and effect, knowing how problems started, and easily able to find to the solutions to the root causes rather than just treating the symptoms like he did in the past.
He got this way by finding new ways to look at things. He drew schematics of the situation, identifying major players and forces, their relationships, and the factors at play such as the environment. He put everything in perspective through a picture, a schematic drawing, helping him organize reality and see the forest through the trees. He also asked questions and attempted to put information he gathered together to see the whole. This helped him open his view to include how others see the world, their values, and find patterns of behavior.
Once he could see in others points of view, he was able to persuade others to consider different technical points of view. Now that, he saw things clearly, he was more capable in communicating to others, finding their motivations, and convincing them of the best solutions by helping them see the whole picture. Even more, he could appreciate the perspectives of the end-user of his company’s products. Giving him the ability to talk about the things important to the customers and not what’s important to the company. Allowing to close more and more deals as time went on. Because he knew what the customer wanted, and gave it to them.
What has helped you see the world differently from movies, writings, and people?
3. Presenting to customers, company executives, and everyone else.
Joe was a likable guy around the office with his own personality. He could easily make conversation with just about anyone. But when it came to public speaking, he was a wreck. He would sweat convulsively with fits of anxiety. Stumbling through presentations to bosses and coworkers alike. He just couldn't get beyond the stage fright.
So what did Joe do to overcome the impossible of toppling his fear of the stage to give over-the-top presentations?
Just like when he became more open to teamwork, he did things gradually to build the skills he needed to excel on the stage. He went to public speaking groups like Toastmasters where he gave speeches in a safe environment with people to uplift him, but also give him constructive critiques. He took on more consulting roles at his work, talking to customers, coworkers, and management. This helped him overcome his fear by realizing there was nothing to fear in the first place.
Eventually, Joe, our Everyman, put himself to the ultimate test. Not presenting to the CEO and executive team, but at a stand-up comedy show on an open mic night. He started out raw, but found his nerve, and he killed it. He wasn't even the funniest that night, but... he was the most accomplished.
After that, the stage and the audience had no chance against Joe.
Check out my blog next week to see how Joe became the Champion. Just remember,"No Fear".
Tell us about an experience you had with public speaking? Good or bad.
2. Collaborating with cross-functional groups on major projects and making technical compromises
When it came to working with others, Joe did his share, but was never happy with their work, and most of the time choose to do his own work away from others on major projects.
What did Joe do to overcome his distaste for team work and even became the go-to person that everyone went to for assistance?
He worked gradually to overcome his distaste for teams, focusing on the positives rather than the negatives. He saw to their strengths and worked around there weaknesses to see the potential beneath. In doing so, he soon became more and more open to others and their opinions. Even more, instead of trying to be right all the time and causing conflict, he compromised. This drew people to him instead of away from him. Eventually, he became the go-to-guy, people went to with problems and solutions.
And the more he worked with others, the more opportunities he had to impress his peers as well as his boss. Becoming the recommended man for the job as he went on to bigger and better projects. Allowing him to get more and more responsibility until he became the one choosing what projects he wanted to be on, and had the best opportunities for him to grow. All from collaborating with others.
Tune in NEXT WEEK and SEE how Joe gets over STAGE FRIGHT!!!
Well hello there.
I didn't see you come in.
Now that you’re here.
Let’s discuss a few things about success.
More often than not, it’s not the lack of technical (Hard) skills that make people unsuccessful, but the lack of interpersonal (Soft) skills.
It’s not that people can’t do the job, it’s the fact that they don’t collaborate effectively, lack a presentation voice, cannot prioritize with little direction, and have an absence of other soft skills.
It’s these soft skills that are the glue that holds the hard skills together.
But the question you must be asking yourself is:
“What exactly are these soft skills in the first place, and how would I develop them anyway?”
Well you have come to the right place as I have just the story to tell about my dear friend ,Joe.
This is his story, and its a story of how the Everyman became the Champion.
Joe is your Everyman. He wakes up every morning to one cup of coffee and a read of the news. He isn't lazy, but isn't motivated. He doesn't not like people, but never seems to get them to like him. He is technically sound in his skills and abilities but can’t seem to get them noticed by others. Working day to day, getting the job done at the minimal effort.
A year later, Joe our Everyman was the hero of his company. Settling big accounts, and the flagship employee for the company.
What had changed our Everyman that year? Had he become smarter? More attractive? More Interesting?
Did he unlock the powers of the universe with his mind?
What was the secret behind his success?
The secret was simple. He had mastered the art of the soft skills.
But what are these skills? And how did Joe get them?
Well let me tell you...
1. Getting work done effectively and at a high quality.
Joe had always done his work, but sometimes didn't adhere to deadlines and was hit and miss in quality. He also had trouble with ambiguity and sometimes couldn't function without proper direction.
How did he develop his ability to make deadlines and ensure high quality? How did he overcome his resistance to ambiguity?
Easily enough, what Joe did was create outlines for his work that made it easy to plug in new information into his reports and pull out information that was no longer useful. In building this “living document”, he was easily able to cut his processing time for orders, reports, and other documents by almost 50% by avoiding redoing much of the work he had already did. This technique became even more powerful once he designed multiple living documents, and passed information along between them.
Then by using the Power of the List, he was able to prioritize his time with little direction, assess how important each priority was to overall success, their cost, and finding alternatives if things didn't go as planned. Doing so, he soon was managing multiple projects, organizing them on a timeline, collaborating with others to get more work done, and meeting budget restraints.
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Lucas Thomas, professional writer, entrepreneur, and business owner.