Surveys suggest most who won lotteries would continue to work. Would you?
Do you live to work or work to live? Or, do you have challenges separating the two?
If you work for a paycheck, you probably work to live. If you’re engrossed in enjoyable activities, you might live to work. Separating work and non-work activities suggests you may strive for balance. Tips for clarifying and creating your desired lifestyle are given.
Surveys suggest most who won lotteries would continue to work. Would you?
At a recent business luncheon one of the guests blew his nose in his napkin. Another guest wore jeans and a sheer blouse. Are these appropriate business behaviors?
Do you practice such basic courtesies as returning messages promptly, and greeting people when they enter your office? Does your organization have uniform policies regarding emails, punctuality, and kitchen use?
Good manners are good business. Many potentially profitable alliances or promotional opportunities are lost because of unintentional bad manners. Second chances aren’t always possible.
Test your business etiquette
Which of the following demonstrate appropriate business etiquette?
1. Your boss, Ms. Andrews, enters the room when you’re meeting with a client, Mr. Block. You rise and say, “Ms. Andrews, I’d like you to meet Mr. Block, our Chicago client.
2. You answer the phone for a colleague and ask “Who’s calling please?”
3. In a restaurant, you drink thin soup served in a cup with no handles.
4. The male pays when he’s having a business meeting at a restaurant with a female colleague.
5. When you greet a visitor in your office, you let him sit where he wishes.
6. You leave a luncheon meeting after two hours.
7. You’re scheduled to meet an associate for a working lunch. If she hasn’t arrived after 30 minutes, you order and eat.
8. Name tags should be placed on the right shoulder.
9. It’s acceptable to make sales pitches at networking functions.
10. It’s appropriate to give business cards to everyone at business meetings.
11. It’s appropriate to take phone calls while in meetings.
12. It’s important to hold doors open for women.
13. It’s okay not to attend office parties.
14. It’s correct for women to extend their hands when greeting others.
15. At a business luncheon, I can eat and answer questions at the same time.
16. If I have a hot meal at a business dinner, I start eating before it gets cold.
17. If I get something stuck in my teeth at a business reception, I remove it with a toothpick.
18. I multitask while talking to a colleague.
19. It’s appropriate to wear tattered jeans on casual work days.
1. Inappropriate. Introduce or name the more important person first. In business, clients hold the highest authority.
The person of lesser importance, regardless of gender, is introduced to the person of greater importance. “Mr. Greater Authority (Mr. Block), I’d like to introduce Ms. Lesser Authority (Ms. Andrews).”
2. Inappropriate. Asking “Who’s calling?” suggests calls are screened. To avoid insults, the person answering the phone could announce the individual’s unavailability, then ask for the caller’s name and message.
To avoid screening, announce yourself at the beginning of calls. By stating your name, you’re sending a subliminal message that you have a right to speak to the person.
3. Inappropriate. Use the spoon provided.
4. Inappropriate. The person who benefits from the business association pays, regardless of gender. Clarify you’re hosting when extending invitations.
5. Inappropriate. Indicating where your guest should sit will make him feel more comfortable.
6. Appropriate. Allow two hours for business lunches. Start discussing business after the appetizer has been served.
7. Appropriate. Also, expect an apology.
8. Appropriate. When shaking hands, your eyes follow the line of the arm to the person’s right side. By placing the tag on the right, you can read the name while shaking hands.
9. Inappropriate. You’ll be perceived as pushy, needy, insensitive, or inexperienced.
10. Inappropriate. Wait until you’ve established a reason to make further contact before exchanging cards. This enhances the value of the exchange.
11. Inappropriate. Taking calls while in a meeting is rude. It says others are more important than the person with whom you’re meeting.
12. Inappropriate. Business etiquette is based on hierarchy and power, unlike social etiquette which is based on gender and chivalry.
Doors are held open for persons more senior in rank, regardless of gender. The person, who gets to the door first, holds it open for people following.
13. Inappropriate. Not attending shows disrespect.
14. Appropriate. A firm handshake made with direct eye contact sets the stage for a positive encounter.
15. Inappropriate. Never speak with food in your mouth, Take small bites so you can quickly finish and swallow the food before speaking. You may not have enough time to eat everything if you’re asked many questions, but remember, you’re meeting to discuss business.
16. Inappropriate. Don’t begin eating until all meals are served and your host takes the first bite. If water is on the table, sip it after everyone is seated.
17. Inappropriate. Toothpicks should be used in private. If food gets stuck in your teeth try to remove it with your tongue. If this doesn’t work, excuse your self and go to the restroom.
18. Inappropriate. If you are in a face-to-face conversation with someone, do not text, email, or answer calls.
19. Inappropriate. Casual is not sloppy. Your team needs to know what appropriate dress and ‘’business casual” mean at your organization. Ensure casual dress does not lead to a casual attitude.
Business manners can advance your career and enhance the reputation of your organization. Present yourself with confidence and authority. Consider others’ feelings. Be courteous, respectful, and considerate to everyone. “Please” and “thank you” are still magic words.
Learn more about Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life: www.questersdaretochange.com/book
Create growth opportunities in your present organization
– Identify needs, skills and other personal qualities you want met in your job. Also write a job description that will enable you to use desired personal traits, and work in an environment that will provide opportunities to perform preferred job tasks, and have desired levels of responsibility and salary.
Chapter 8, “Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life,” will help you uncover the real you, and show you how to investigate compatible career options. Check out the book in this web site www.questersdaretochange.com/book.
– Explore ways to creatively redesign your job. If you want to spend more time on sales and less time on technical work, propose suggestions to your boss indicating how this will enhance your productivity and benefit the company’s bottom line.
– Take initiative. Look for jobs you would like in your company. Identify the project manager. Research ways you can enhance the project and offer the manager assistance and suggestions. Volunteer for special projects. Offer to take charge of a newsletter or a community relations project. Ask for what you want.
– Become a team player. Get involved in and work toward the success of a project. Offer time and recommendations for enhancing the company’s product or service.
– Network. Learn what’s happening in the company. Communicate regularly with colleagues. Participate in social activities, read the company newsletter.
– Become an expert in your field. Continue to learn. Read professional journals, attend business meetings. Share your knowledge and skills.
– Develop interests outside of work. Make family and leisure time fun. Find hobbies and volunteer activities that could provide challenge and boost confidence.
– Gain the recognition and support of political decision makers. Demonstrate loyalty, ability to set priorities, and attain goals. Show you’re motivated to enhance productivity, can meet deadlines, and communicate effectively.
Are you satisfied with your job? Do you enjoy getting up to go to work Monday mornings?
Whether or not you’re satisfied with your job depends on the degree to which it meets your needs.
So, for instance, if you have a high need for social contact and your job gives you many opportunities to satisfy that need (assuming other important high-level needs are also met), you will have a high level of job satisfaction. If, on the other hand, you have a job that offers few chances to make social contacts, you maybe very dissatisfied.
A young person with a job that demands extensive travel may be quite satisfied. But once that person is married and has children, being away from home may become so displeasing that he or she seeks a new job with limited travel demands.
As you grow and develop, your needs constantly jockey for position, As a result, in middle age you may seriously consider changing the direction of your career and life.
Chapter 6, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life, looks at job satisfiers Questers tend to seek. This may help you clarify your own job needs. Quizzes show how to rate your job satisfaction, job involvement, and burnout potential.
Book available from: https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963
Are you a good listener? Do others feel comfortable talking to you?
Listening skills are crucial for personal and professional success. Unfortunately, studies suggest that about 25 percent of us listen efficiently.
Ineffective listening affects productivity and morale. Faulty listening habits can alienate customers, damage relationships, and cause people to miss appointments and misinterpret suggestions. Managers, who are rated inefficient by subordinates, tend to be poor listeners. Subordinates, who fail to listen, may make mistakes.
Are you a good listener?
Answer “yes” or “no.”
1. I finish sentences for others.
2. When listening, I tend to think about what I will say next.
3. I listen for main ideas.
4. I judge content, skip over delivery errors.
5. When others ask questions, I give them full attention.
6. Certain emotion-laden words anger me.
7. I maintain eye contact.
8. I get distracted easily.
9. I take intensive notes.
10. I listen between the lines to voice tones.
11. I mentally summarize the speaker’s message.
12. I anticipate what the speaker may say, then finish his statement.
13. I give the speaker an opportunity to explain the issue.
14. I never put others on the defensive.
15. I tend to monopolize conversations.
Scoring: One point for each “yes” to 3, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11, 13 and 14; and “no” to 1, 2, 6, 8, 9, 12, and 15. The higher your score the more you tend to be a good listener. To further verify your listening ability, ask a colleague to complete the quiz for you.
Effective listening is an active process. Like most skills, listening takes practice. Become aware of your ineffective listening habits, and practice effective skills.
Tips for effective listening
— Focus on the speaker and attend to his or her message. This enables the speaker to feel comfortable sharing thoughts and feelings.
— Demonstrate appropriate body language. Lean forward slightly and look the speaker in the eyes. Instead of sitting behind a desk, join the speaker in an adjoining chair. When appropriate, smile, frown, laugh, or maintain silence to let the speaker know you understand what he is saying.
Radiate interest and offer encouragement. Speak softly (“Uh-huh”) and nod. Make comments such as “Fascinating,” and offer prompts: “What did he say?” and “What did you do then?”
Ask questions for clarification after the speaker has finished so you won’t interrupt his train of thought. Repeat, in your own words, what the speaker said so you can ensure your understanding is correct. For example, “So you’re saying …”
— Listen for main ideas. Important points the speaker may want to convey could be mentioned at the start or end of a talk. Attend to statements that begin with phrases such as, “My point is …” or “The thing to remember is …”
— Listen between the lines. Concentrate not only on what’s being said but also on the attitudes and motives behind the words. Note changing voice tone and volume, facial expressions, hand gestures and body movements.
Observe whether the voice message is congruent with auditory and behavioral cues. Although the speaker says he’s excited about an idea or project, his lack of spontaneous movement, wandering or downcast eyes, unanimated voice tone, masked face or hunched posture may indicate he feels differently.
— Focus on the message. not speaker. the speaker’s accent, speech impediment or disorganized thought patterns.
— Tune out everything but the speaker. To minimize distractions, close the office door, don’t answer the telephone, and turn off the computer. Don’t doodle or click your pen and continue to focus on what the speaker is saying.
— Don’t interrupt. This signals you’re not paying attention, and suggests the speaker’s comments are unimportant.
Ensure the speaker has finished conveying the message before talking. If the speaker is launching a complaint against you, wait until he is finished. This will allow the speaker to feel his point has been made.
— Keep an open mind. Don’t make assumptions about what the speaker is saying. Wait until she is finished before coming to conclusions. Instead of dismissing the person or topic as dull, consider this as an opportunity to learn something new.
— Don’t top the speaker. If someone is discussing the Rockies, avoid reminiscing about a trip to Italy.
Consider listening a learning experience and an opportunity to enhance relationships with others.
Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life provides additional tips for effective listening: https://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/15084089
Do you look at the bright side of life and anticipate good fortune and success? Or, do you feel that you are missing something when it comes to good luck and fortune?
Do you have winning personality traits?
Answer “Yes” or “No”
1. I expect to win.
2. I often follow my intuition.
3. I see the bright side of a problem.
4. I seize opportunities in unexpected situations.
5. I’m open to new opportunities.
6. I’m optimistic.
7. I take steps to improve my life.
8. I live in the present.
9. I’m usually relaxed.
10. I’m open-minded.
Scoring: Add your Yes responses. The higher your score, the luckier you perceive yourself to be. You probably create your own good fortune, expect to win, are alert to new opportunities, and do what it takes to improve your life.
Tips for Creating Luck
– Review the fortunate experiences you’ve had over the past five years, and note when you’ve had good luck. List people, circumstances, and resources that influenced your luck. Talk to others about their good luck, and identify what they did to facilitate good fortune.
Develop a success journal. Write down your successes weekly. Note the role luck played in achieving them, and the strategies you used to influence your luck.
– Be flexible, open to new experiences. Recognize opportunities and take advantage of them. Perceive patterns, and make connections between seemingly unrelated ideas, objects or events. View commonplace things in new ways.
Take advantage of unexpected good fortunes. Don’t procrastinate. The window of opportunity may not last long.
– Dare to risk. Every new venture has an element of risk. You can’t grow and succeed without stretching, risking. Explore new opportunities. Don’t fear mistakes. Ask yourself, “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Decide whether you could live with the worst scenario, or take steps to reduce the chance of it happening.
Look upon something new, different, or unknown as exciting — an opportunity to challenge yourself and to grow. If you don’t try, how will you ever find out if you can do it?
– Set goals, and develop an action plan. Break the goal down into small steps. Every day do at least one activity related to achieving it. Know resources that can help you attain the goal. Work hard. Focus. Expect success.
– Build networks to exchange ideas and offer assistance. Opportunities to create chance experiences are greater with a strong network of contacts and resources. Attend professional and community meetings. Plan to meet at least two new people at each new gathering. Take the initiative. Follow up and show appreciation for help and contacts.
– Challenge assumptions. Examine your belief system. Question why things are done certain ways. Challenge conventional truths and the status quo. Seek new alternatives in developing problem resolutions.
– Prepare for, and welcome the unexpected. Recognize opportunities that might have eluded you previously. Believe in your ability to create luck.
Louis Pasteur said, “Chance favors the prepared mind.” A myriad of opportunities won’t help unless you’re prepared to use them. Luck occurs when preparation meets opportunity. I was in the right place at the right time. But I also created my luck. I seized the opportunity when it was presented.
Do you make great first impressions at job interviews or business meetings? Do you present yourself professionally when making phone, fax, e-mail or video conference contacts?
First impressions are critical. Research suggests that people evaluate others within the first minute. Decisions are usually based on appearance, posture, speech and demeanor. First impressions last. Many business transactions are won or lost in the first few minutes.
— Do you present a favorable first impression? Check “yes” or “no.”
1. When sending emails, I address the person to whom I’m sending the message by name.
2. I usually display enthusiasm, poise, confidence and style.
3. I send hand-written thank you notes to business contacts who have helped me.
4. I carry my briefcase and coat in my left hand so I can shake with my right hand.
5. My wardrobe and accessories are stylish and appropriate for the company culture.
6. When speaking, I rarely put my hands in pockets.
7. When conducting business, I stand or sit at the client’s level.
8. When leaving telephone messages, I state my message briefly and clearly, and give my name and phone number, repeating these twice slowly.
9. I’m always polite and courteous.
10. I place name tags on my right shoulder.
11. I speak in a level, modulated voice.
12. I remember business contacts’ names and can pronounce them.
13. I arrive on time for appointments.
14. I never use CAPs when writing emails.
Give yourself one point for each “yes.” The higher your score, the more you present a positive first impression. Ten or less suggests you could improve your image. Here are suggestions.
— Prepare. Research the organization, job or business contact. Call contacts to get an insider’s perspective. Be conversant with company products, services and recent developments. Know how to describe contributions you can make. Practice delivery for presentations or job interviews.
— Greetings. Smile. A pleasant, sincere smile displays good will and friendliness. Establish eye contact to convey honesty, confidence, interest, warmth and credibility. Looking down suggests shyness, insecurity, nervousness and possibly untruthfulness. When people ask how you are, respond optimistically, energetically.
Use the person’s name frequently. This shows you’re paying attention and gives them importance. Shake hands firmly, but don’t show excessive strength. Offer your hand first.
— Be sensitive to nonverbal messages you’re receiving and giving. Your body language can work for or against you. Be relaxed. Stand or sit erect. Express feelings and opinions directly, honestly, assuredly. Lean slightly forward to face the person with whom you’re communicating. Note nonverbal cues. If the other person has folded arms, a skeptical facial expression, a rigid body and little eye contact when you speak, stop talking. Ask questions and listen.
— Speak clearly, and listen. Speak with a well-modulated voice and proper enunciation. Don’t garble words. Adjust your pace and volume to the person with whom you’re speaking. Avoid nervous, nonstop chatter. Don’t babble during silence. Sit quietly and smile.
Listen. Let the person know you’re paying attention. Nod your head and chime in with occasional verbal cues such as “I understand.” Ask non-threatening questions if you’re unsure of what the person is trying to communicate.
Don’t monopolize the conversation or talk incessantly about yourself, but do share the conversation. Inquire about the person. Share interesting happenings.
— Develop appropriate written verbal communication skills. Before sending letters, memos, emails, reports or resumes, review and proofread. Write simply, clearly, logically. Avoid offensive or confrontational language. Address the person to whom your sending the message. Sign your name.
— Dress professionally. Combine style with comfort and appropriateness. What is suitable attire can differ from one industry to another. Research the norm for the area and company. The appropriate look for men is a navy or grey suit. A sport coat and slacks is acceptable. Suits or tailored dresses are acceptable for women. Short hemlines, plunging necklines and tight-fitting clothes are inappropriate. Select and coordinate accessories to reflect your personal style.
— Demonstrate integrity. Be positive and to the point. Don’t share unfavorable comments about others. Focus on what you can offer. Believe in yourself and your product. Be genuine, natural, honest. Approach issues from the other’s perspective. Take responsibility for your actions. Focus on fixing problems.
Create a terrific first impression. To learn how others see you, observe yourself in a full length mirror or video, listen to yourself in a tape recorded conversation, or ask a friend or colleague for feedback. Practice behaviors you want to enhance.
What kind of career assistance did you receive when you were in high school? What kind of help are young people you know getting? What can you do to help?
Mavis, a recent law graduate, doesn’t want to practice law. But what to do? Mark, a grade 12 student, wants to take a year off before completing any post high training. His parents are upset.
The dilemmas of Mavis and Mark are common. Being undecided about career direction is a normal part of growing up. Indecision also happens to adults periodically. We evaluate who we are and where we want to go during transition periods in late adolescence and again at about age 30, 40, 50, 60 and so on.
For the high school or college student the questions, “Who am I?” and “What should I do?” can be overwhelming and anxiety-provoking. Peers, school, family and other societal pressures add to their stress. Some stress could be reduced if students were helped to understand themselves, explore their options, define broad career goals, and understand that career and lifestyle decision making is lifelong.
Are schools doing an effective job helping students make smooth school to work transitions?
Some schools are doing an excellent job preparing students for college entrance. But to take what? To prepare for what occupation or occupational field? Many graduates, like Mavis, with university degrees and no career goals, are paying off student loans in excess of $80,000.00!
Although university is a good place to learn more about yourself, meet others and explore some career options, is a four year university degree the best option for all students? Recent research by US Department of Education (https://www.ed.gov/news) indicate that nearly half of all students who begin college do not graduate within six years, and the consequences of taking on debt but never receiving a meaningful degree can be severe. Students who borrow for college but never graduate are three times more likely to default. A stronger focus on outcomes for students means change for everyone – schools, students, states, accreditors, and the federal government.
Some adolescents, who are more interested and talented in working with their hands or want to work outdoors, feel pressured to attend college. Many can achieve satisfaction and success without a degree. Brad, a college drop-out, has a successful computer repair business. Fred, a former college president, is a carpenter. Karol, a former English professor, has her own catering business.
Many students go to university because they’re told they’ll earn more if they have a degree. While this is true on average, many technical, trade and crafts workers such as drafters, electricians, automobile mechanics and construction supervisors earn more than university educated teachers, dietitians and social workers.
What can schools do to help students with post-high plans? One solution is to offer effective career education programs and services. As an integral part of the educational process, career education assists students develop healthy emotions, positive self-concepts, good communication skills, abilities to understand, accept and help others, and contribute to their communities.
Career education helps students acquire appropriate attitudes, knowledge and skills in three interrelated areas.
1. Knowledge of self and others. Inventories and varied experiences help students assess personal characteristics such as interests, needs and strengths and use these to explore compatible lifestyle options. Students also acquire interpersonal skills and understand that personal and career development is lifelong.
2. Exploration of career and lifestyle alternatives. This includes exploring occupation alternatives and various education/training routes to job entry. Study and job search skills, money management, economic principles, and family, leisure and citizenship roles and settings are also addressed.
3. Decision-making and goal setting strategies. These are understood and applied to all life components.
Students are encouraged to delay more permanent choices until they better understand themselves and their options, but make tentative choices to give meaning, motivation and direction to school and life experiences. They also learn that they have control over their personal and career destinies. Flexibility and planned risk taking is fostered.
All good teachers implement some of these concepts. They also show the relevancy of subject matter and help students develop an appreciation of lifelong learning.
Ideally, educators, parents and community members work with students to help them prepare for working, living and making a societal contribution. The result is satisfied, well-adjusted, healthy and productive adults.
© Carole Kanchier, PhD
SPIRITUALITY AT WORK
Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life. Buddha
What does spirituality mean you?
Spirituality means something different to everyone. For some, it’s about participating in organized religion: going to church, synagogue, a mosque, etc. For others, it’s more personal: Some people get in touch with their spiritual side through private prayer, yoga, meditation, quiet reflection, or even long walks.
Recent surveys reveal there is a growing interest in spirituality in the workplace. People want strength to deal with work challenges. They want to derive more meaning, support and inspiration from work.
Spirituality includes becoming more humanistic. Imagine a harmonious, peaceful workplace where everybody is responsive, respectful and equal, regardless of culture, religion, education or organizational level! Both employers and employees would benefit. With more creative, motivated, productive employees, organizations would have fewer retention and morale problems; employees would have greater satisfaction, less stress.
Tips for practicing spirituality
— Be positive, accepting, helpful. Respect others’ beliefs and their rights to hold these. Expect good things to happen. Smile to everyone. Befriend new employees. If you’re unhappy, identify why. Notice how you dealt with the issue previously, then choose to behave differently.
— Know yourself and what you want. Be yourself. Identify your purpose. Notice things that give satisfaction, come easily. Recognize absorbing childhood activities, how you would occupy time if you had billions, an important cause, and people you admire. Identify common threads such as helping others, working with machines. Develop a career goal based on the threads. Work to achieve it.
— Understand the concept of universal energy. The basic component of our physical universe is a kind of force, essence or energy, often referred to as God or Divine Intelligence. This energy vibrates at different rates of speed, and thus has qualities from fine to dense. Thought is a quick, light form of energy. Matter is dense, slower to move.
Your thoughts set vibrations in motion which attract the positive or negative. When you release positive energy such as love, happiness, you attract good things. Life runs smoothly. When you release negative energy such as hate, fear, you draw unpleasant things.
— Boost creativity. Creativity involves finding new and better ways of working. It includes discovering novel ideas, strategies or products, and tackling problems in new ways. Anxiety, stress, anger, cultural pressures, lack of security and overemphasis on external rewards hinder imagination. Relaxation, autonomy, support and feedback promote creativity.
Laugh and play. Laughter enables you to remain creative under pressure. Identify ways to make work fun. Brainstorm ideas with your team. When something is difficult, approach it with another angle. Refocus, meditate, move to another task. Acquire new experiences. Focus on learning and experimenting with something new, rather than previously mastered tasks.
— Communicate openly, directly. People need to communicate to achieve common goals. What you say and how you say it often determines how you’re viewed. When you communicate effectively, people feel understood, valued, trusted.
Talk with colleagues. Listen to them. Ask questions when you’re not clear. Summarize what you hear to correct misunderstandings.
Maintain eye contact when speaking. Make specific requests rather than complaints. Let others know you appreciate their efforts. Don’t speak when angry. Prepare and rehearse before confronting potentially difficult conversations. Avoid malicious gossip. Advise others of important news and stay informed about company developments.
— Be a team player. Effective partnerships require trust, communication and commitment. Teams that include people with diverse views offer superior problem solutions, and can resolve disagreements without hostility or domination.
Respect and cooperate with co-workers. Acknowledge co-workers’ interests, concerns and contributions. Volunteer to help colleagues who need assistance. Offer innovative ideas. Demonstrate loyalty to employer and supervisors.
— Schedule time for reflection daily. Center yourself. Take time every morning to meditate or pray. Reflect on things important to you. Breathe deeply when feeling anxious. Eliminate negative thoughts.
— Display momentos. Keep a small stone with a number one painted on it to remind yourself never to cast the first stone. Screensavers can remind you of the infinite beauty and abundance of nature. These momentos often precipitate questions which contribute to comfortable conversations about spirituality.
Additional strategies for developing spirituality are found in Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life (http://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963) and the forthcoming Arouse the Force Within
You have the power to create a better career and life for yourself and others. Start practicing spirituality today!
Tag: Dr. Carole Kanchier, registered psychologist, coach and author of the award winning, , helps individuals and organizations integrate spiritual principles into their policies and practices.
Wondering what to do with your life? Become a Quester. Try this quiz to start your own personal quest. http://www.questersdaretochange.com/services-2/quester-quiz/
Tips for Strengthening Telephone Etiquette
- Knowledge: Before you make a call have the required information.
- Goals: Know what you want to accomplish.
- Attitude: Make the receiver feel that you’re interested in him or her and the message.
— Make a great first impression. Show the caller that you’re helpful, confident and competent. If a potential employer’s first contact is over the phone, she gets cues from your voice.
You can influence your listener’s reactions by controlling the pace, pitch, inflection and tone of your voice. Strive for an energy level that matches your normal conversation. A soft voice suggests shyness or uncertainty; a loud voice implies anger or worry. Be alert to your caller’s needs. If he’s having trouble hearing, speak louder, more slowly.
Speak briskly but pronounce words clearly. When you talk too fast, you sound hurried or excited and are difficult to understand; when you too speak slowly, you sound tired, lazy or uninterested.
Inflection adds special meaning to your message. If, for example, you say, “–John– needs help with his resume this afternoon,” you’re suggesting John needs help. If you say, “John needs help with his resume — this afternoon, — your indicating he needs help this afternoon.
Different tones of voice can make us feel differently — happy, angry, hurt, etc. Keep your tone attentive, interested and friendly. Smiling adds a pleasant tone to your voice.
— Be courteous. People are turned off by careless or rude remarks. Always say hello and identify yourself. Ask how you can help. Use courtesy words, “Thank you for waiting.” If you need to put the caller on hold, ask, and wait for an answer. If you need to phone back, indicate when you’ll call.
End the call positively, for example, “Thanks for calling.” Let the caller hang up first. This gives him control of the ending as well as an opportunity to ask further questions. Don’t eat, drink, or chew gum.
— Leave clear, concise messages. State your name and phone number. Repeat these twice. Give the name of the person you’re calling and date and time you called. If the person doesn’t return your call, phone again a few days later. For other message skills, review the telephone savvy questions.
— Ace the job phone interview. If you’re not prepared to speak with an employer who calls you, ask the employer if you can return the call, or if he can call back at a mutually convenient time. This gives you time to prepare.
Your confidence and career advancement will improve as you hone your phone skills.
Additional telephone and business etiquette tips are discussed in “Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life:” http://www.amazon.com/Questers-Dare-Change-Your-Life/dp/1508408963