Posts Tagged ‘corporate’

How to Have an Awesome Work Career

Monday, February 13th, 2012

I was reflecting on my work career (past, present, and future) this morning and came to the realization that my job is “awesome.”  OK, that word is overused, but I have young adult and pre-teen daughters, so I think I understand the different meanings it has, but I’m talking about the old definition of “awesome.” In others words, I enjoy almost every part of what I do for a living, and there is research in work psychology that explains why that is the case. So, here are the elements that make up an “awesome work career,” and some tips on how to get more of those elements in your own work life.

Meaning. An awesome job is one that has meaning. There is a purpose to your work, and you have to find that higher purpose. There is a scene in the movie Cedar Rapids, where Ed Helms’ nerdy character makes insurance sales sound like an uplifting career (“we are the heroes on the disaster scene, working to rebuild lives…”). Even mundane jobs, like customer service can be viewed as having meaning (e.g., helping clients, giving customers a great experience). If you can’t find the meaning in your current job after looking hard, it may be time to look hard for a new career.

Accomplishment. Choose a career where you can accomplish things, take pride in those accomplishments, and celebrate them. I take pride when I publish a paper, give a great lecture, or finish a blog post. The pride comes from readers and students who comment favorably on my accomplishments, and I’ve been known to celebrate with a glass of wine.

My friend Carlos makes car-racing accessories. He takes pride in the fact that he can build better quality accessories, and do them quicker, than anyone else at his company. I tell our college students to accomplish something at their summer internships – a project, a report, or helping run a successful event. If their internship doesn’t require it, I suggest they talk to their supervisor about taking on some extra, challenging project, perhaps one that the supervisor hasn’t had time to complete. It makes for a better internship experience to accomplish something that makes a distinct contribution, and the same goes for every job.

Positive Relationships. Nothing can make a career more awesome than working with terrific people, and building strong and rewarding relationships with them. I’m fortunate to have amazing, talented, and (yes) awesome students. I get to meet and network with wonderful clients in my consulting work, and I have some of the best research collaborators anyone could hope for. And, I try to steer clear of the bad relationships – those that can make your job an ordeal, and make you question yourself and your career choice.

Research clearly shows that relationships at work can be the greatest source of pleasure or the most tormenting source of pain and stress. Cultivate positive relationships and work hard to avoid the bad relationships (previous posts offer help in dealing with bullies and bad colleagues and bosses).

Balance. Very few people can have awesome careers if their lives revolve entirely around their jobs. An awesome career is one that allows time for family, friends, and the ability to pursue non-work-related interests. I often talk to people who are unhappy because their jobs consume all of their time and energy. Some of them change to careers that allow greater balance and flexibility, and although there are tradeoffs (e.g., less money, prestige, or a slower ride up the ladder). I rarely hear any regrets from them.

Does good fortune play a part in someone having an awesome career? To some extent. But it is more likely that people have to plan, make tough strategic career decisions, and work hard to make their career awesome.


Published by Ronald E. Riggio, Ph.D.

Get Gorgeous Results with Joy

Friday, September 23rd, 2011

The instant fix to look immediately ravishing is feeling joyful. When you radiate joy, then not only do people notice you, but they want to be around you more often. Do you experience joy on a daily basis? Is this realistic? We here at Mars Venus Coaching think it is—and when you’re able to experience and share joy with others daily, then this also makes you a humbler, more compassionate person as well. No need for a trip to the doctor’s or cosmetologist’s office, the answer lies with you—in your head. You may have heard that a smile opens doors, but what we’re talking about here is pure joy.

Wanting or thinking about being happy or joyful does not necessarily make it so. You have to take a concrete step in order to make joy a part of your reality. It alleviates everything from depression to bad relationships. If you have either—or if you are overweight, dislike your job situation, your relationships aren’t as good as you’d like—then creating a 90 day plan with a coach who keeps you accountable just may help. Try it yourself first, then if you’re having trouble sticking to and articulating what you’re wishing and hoping for—then find yourself a coach that has all the qualities you’re looking to possess yourself.

To get started today below are a few daily scenarios with tips to help you reframe how you perceive your situation and see the joy in your daily life experiences.

On the way to work in a train, plane, or automobile:

Commute slow or lengthy or bogged down…focus on your senses. The smells, how it feels, and what you can hear, and what nature you can see. Look for the beautiful and be in awe. It could be a glimpse of green shrubbery, a whimsical cloud, a soaring bird, or a deer peeking out of the woods. Listening to favorite songs and singing or humming along also works!

At work:

Do the unexpected. Settle in to your routine and notice where your body is in relation to what you’re doing. If it feels tight or cramped, do something to alleviate the symptoms—walk outside to get some vitamin D from the sun and notice nature, go to the bathroom and do some stretches, give a compliment to a co-worker or a customer unexpected.

Coming home to a house—empty or full:

Gratitude or Create Beauty. Think of everything you have—shelter, safety, and pick up or look at one of your favorite things. Do something that creates beauty—whether it’s the perfect temperature bubble bath, or the perfect vegetable medley, messy finger paints with your kids, or a crazy haphazard waltz around the house with your loved ones. Engage and immerse yourself in your home and what makes you uniquely you and your family too. Silliness factors in big time!

In a conflict:

Stop. Before you say anything, STOP. Tell yourself STFU or WTF if you need to, but STOP. Before you say anything get into the mindset of the other person. If what you’d like to say will escalate the situation or cause hurt, then don’t. Deflect and deflate the situation by agreeing or redirecting to another topic. Then focus on how you can lift each other up, and how both sides can win.

Listening to the voices in your head:

Run like a kid. And, one of the best remedies is going for a long run in bare feet (or one of those shoes that let’s your arches do what they’re supposed to do and move). What? That’s right—if you can zone out and find yourself in the flow on a run, it doesn’t have to be fast (and it doesn’t have to be without shoes), just start out remembering how you used to do it as a kid. You can also run-walk, but the focus here is to do it like a kid. Remember the thrill of just moving your body and not knowing for how far or how long or how fast you’re trying to do something. The voices will be silenced, and in its place: serene joy.

The more you find yourself throughout the day in the present moment enjoying each sensation and interaction as it happens the more you will be “in” joy. You can do this while parenting, on dates, or all by yourself whenever you need a pick me up. Go ahead, take a picture or dig out an old one of when you were ecstatically happy—I don’t know a picture that isn’t beautiful when joy is present. That’s all it is—is being physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually here right now. Are you there yet? Questions, feel free to ask!

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Assertive Communication with Gender-Based Sales

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

There is often failure and setbacks as we grow and change. All successful ventures which involve other people rely on the strength of our communication skills to hear and understand the needs of others. Being able to put this into practice day in and day out in both our personal and professional lives is what determines our lifelong success rates. Being able to communicate assertively (not passively, aggressively, or passive-aggressively) is critical, but so is saying the right things when you are buying or selling based on gender preferences.

Using gender preferences when selling shows your capability: to tune into your client’s preferences, to be a reflective listener, and see their point of view. An assertive communicator is a good listener. Rephrasing what someone has said before you give your own input ensures (especially if you’re talking to the opposite sex) you hear them, and in return will be able to meet their needs. It gives the other person a chance to say, “yup, that’s what I said,” or “um, no, what I was saying was…”

Below are some gender-based preferences for buying and selling that serve as a guide to being a more effective sales person. Remember these are not absolutes, but guidelines, as there are also: (1) personality, (1) cultural, (3) generational, and (4) religious cues you need to be aware of when making a sale to the client sitting directly in front of you.

Female Preferences:

  1. Female prospects after an initial proposal may place an order and be more talkative after they’ve had a few days to think about it.
  2. During the early stages of a relationship with a new client, a female client is more likely to hold your feet to the fire on your statement that you have made a “casual commitment” to them.
  3. Female clients prefer that you listen with 100% attention when selling to them.
  4. Pausing before presenting your solution (even if you already have a solution) is more socially acceptable to female clients, because they want to be a part of coming up with the solution and do not want the solution rushed.
  5. Female clients prefer to know how the product will meet their needs when buying.
  6. When a female client or coworker is stressed about a problem she is more likely to walk around talking to coworkers rather than shutting the door and working out the problem.
  7. Boasting or self-promoting to female clients can turn them off to a sale.
  8. Female clients may not like it if you have all the answers to their objectives at the tip of your tongue. Female clients may be more inclined to do business with you if you hold back on giving all the answers, and offering to do research and get back to them for some of their questions.
  9. Female clients would most appreciate it if you showed them how to be happier at their job.
  10. Taking time to bond well the first time you meet a female client prior to starting the sales “pitch” is suggested as it shows you are taking time to get to know her as a person, before offering her a product or service.
  11. Female clients may need the most time to think an offer through so they do not feel rushed to make a decision.
  12. Female clients prefer being shown respect rather than appreciation when you are dealing with them.

Male Preferences:

  1. Male prospects make quicker decisions after receiving a sales proposal.
  2. Male clients prefer to know your credentials and dwell on them before making a sale.
  3. After the sales proposal has been made, if the offer is higher than what he expected to pay for your goods or services, male prospects are more likely to be quieter during this meeting.
  4. Male prospects tend to favor being shown appreciation rather than respect when selling a service or product.
  5. When making your point make sure you are clear in your message to male clients.
  6. Male clients prefer quick solutions to a problem.
  7. Male clients prefer people to be brief and come to the point quickly when making a sale.
  8. Male clients need the most space to think alone after a proposal submission has been made.
  9. You may bond better with male clients if you show how your product will meet a specific need.
  10. It tends to matter much more to a male client that you demonstrate extensive product knowledge than it does to female clients.
  11. Male clients prefer to have all the answers ready.
  12. Male clients appreciate and are more inclined to deal with you when you focus on showing them how to be successful at their job.

Did these preferences make you smile about your own buying habits too?

Whether it’s growing a business, achieving your dreams, pursuing professional objectives, or having quality relationships—it takes sweat, effort, and work. I apply these principles of assertive communication and gender-based sales with friends and clients whether they are growing their small businesses or working on finessing themselves and finding compatible life partners. Why? If we are not staying true to our client’s values and character as they attempt to grow professionally, then we’re offering temporary fixes that are shallow and short-lived. Whenever we make a commitment to growth, before we achieve our desired end state we have to invest in ourselves to bring about the change we desire. Are you ready to invest in your people skills?

Lyndsay Katauskas, MEd

Mars Venus Coaching

Corporate Media Relations

Latest Mars Venus Executive Training Press Release

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

For Release

June 29th, 2011

New Executive Logo

Mars Venus Executive Training Success at SHRM Expo

Mars Venus Executive Training, a global training organization, attended the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) Expo held in Las Vegas, Nevada this past week. Their presence at the event proved to be a huge success, offering the executive team the opportunity to present their newest training programs based on Gender Intelligence in the workplace to human resources and training representatives from companies around the world.

Mars Venus Executive Training has developed an online Gender Intelligence test (GQ test), the test was available at the booth. Attendees were able to complete the test and get a feel for their Gender Intelligence Quotient. John Gray, Ph.D. was also present at to discuss the importance of Gender Intelligence and its impact on the corporate environment as well as to sign complimentary copies of his book, “Why Mars and Venus Collide.”

“I was very impressed with the caliber of the attendees at the expo and how passionate they are about their corporate teams and their specific training needs. Each attendee I spoke with, whether an HR representative, a sales manager or a small business owner had a strong connection with the importance of Gender Intelligence in the workplace and how it would benefit their teams,” commented John Gray, Ph.D. “As I spent more time with each professional discussing their training needs it became clear to me that in today’s corporate environment the need for this type of executive training is greater now than ever before. The event solidified my passion and diligent work over the last 30 years and the importance of taking this information into the executive arena.”

Mars Venus Executive Training is a global training company founded on the principles of best-selling author and speaker, John Gray, Ph.D. His 30 years of experience in the fields of psychology, relationships, communication, personal success, and productivity in the workplace, and wealth generation have made this company a world leader in corporate training. Mars Venus Executive trainers can be found around the world, including United States, Central America, Europe, the Middle East, India, China and Australia.