Be the Change

One of the interesting things about being human is that we are imperfect. We are constantly striving to be better. We keep changing and evolving.

What is the best way to encourage change in the people in your life? HBR recently posted the ten best tips for creating positive change momentum in the professional world.

Here are my top five:

  1. Embrace the power of one: “When you have 20 priorities, you have none. Research on multitasking reveals that we’re not good at it. Focus on one behavior to change at a time.”
  2. Make your goals specific and  SMART: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely!
  3. Paint a vivid picture: imagine a detailed vision of a better future you can aspire to. It will serve as an emotional inspiration.
  4. Activate peer pressure: by nature, we are affected by what the people around us do. Our peers help guide our social behavior, so use that to build momentum.
  5. Hire and fire based on behaviors: people act based on the ramifications of their actions. Use it to motivate them.

What do would you add to this list? Please share!

Ritu Walia is an FG Analyst.

Relationship Roundup

This week in the Roundup, how to manage your time on social media, create habits that stick, put a contact in relationship time-out, and tips on communication and accountability.

Get time on your side – The addition of social media to your plate of responsibilities can be daunting personally and professionally. Managing your time in this area not only means more time on your hands, but a better presence for your brand. Learn some tips in this Hubspot blog:

Creating sticky habits – We all struggle with making new habits routine. To assist, try the tips suggested in this Entrepreneur magazine blog. Read it here:

Relationship time-out – Inevitably someone in your network may abuse their social privileges to the point where you will want to put them in the time-out corner. Now there’s an app for that. Read about the Twitter Doghouse in this Mashable blog:

True leaders communicate – Leading the tribe requires excellent communication skills. Read this SmartBrief Blog on Leadership for the communication traits of good leaders:

The accountability factor – All talk and no commitment leads individuals and organizations nowhere. Learn some ways to bring accountability to the forefront of your organization’s value set. Read the Harvard Business Review blog here:

Kibibi Springs is myGreenlight’s Community Director.

Christine Comaford’s Tip for Making Sure Your Message Gets Through

During her dynamic interview as part of our Social Capitalist series, Christine Comaford shared the concept of metaprograms. Created by Rodger Bailey, these are lenses through which people see the world.  Knowing which lens is in use is key to making sure your message is heard and received.

Christine says:

“The first metaprogram is towards or away. Each of these meta-programs is polarized. So if somebody is like, “Yes, I want to launch new initiatives, I want goals, I want forward motion,” that’s a towards person. An away person is all about risk mitigation: “Let’s be cautious, let’s not go crazy and jump in.”

The CEOs, the marketing people, the sales people, are often towards people. The CIOs, maybe, the accounting people, maybe HR, are away. So if you’re trying to get a CFO on board of a certain initiative, you say, “Hey, you know what? Let’s be real cautious, let’s make sure we’ve got all the I’s dotted and T’s crossed.” They’re going to feel a sense of rapport with you. Now you’re not this crazed sales or marketing or other type of towards person who wants to mow them down.

The next one is options or procedures. Options people are like, “Wow, here’s all these possibilities. We could do this and that and that,” and everybody’s all excited. Procedures people, listening to that, are getting freaked out. Procedures people are thinking, “OK, I just need to know step one, step two, step three, because I don’t want to mess it up. Don’t give me all those choices.” Continue reading

Relationship Roundup

This week in the roundup, a few ways to challenge yourself to get out of your shell, manage difficult tasks, and put your relationships on the right track. Get growing.

Rough relationships – Part of gaining greater relationships is learning to constructively resolve conflict. In this CBS MoneyWatch article, Robert Pagliarini outlines six steps to resolve conflict. Read them here:

1-2-3-4 goal! – We all like shortcuts. Learn four quick steps to hurdle the goals in your life here:

Are you eating alone? – Your computer is not the lunch date we had in mind when we said “never eat alone.” Shared meal times are great for information sharing and possibly meeting new people in the office. As the author of 168 Hours shares in this article, splitting lunch time between efficiency and socializing provides the right balance for a healthy work life. Read more here:

Learn to network better than Bill Clinton – Former guest to myGreenlight’s Social Capitalist series, author and executive coach Christine Comaford, shares her secrets on generous networking and the palm up theory. Read her Forbes blog here:

Embarrassment as accountability – While this method is certainly unorthodox, I can’t help but be curious about its ability to motivate. A new leisure site Aherk aims to motivate the completion of tasks by blackmailing users with a Facebook post of an embarrassing photo if they miss the mark. Read more here:

Kibibi Springs is myGreenlight’s Community Director.

Mark Divine’s Three Tips to Channel Stress into Success

“You can’t develop mental toughness without challenging yourself. I call it stressing yourself for success. There’s no question the human body is designed with that fight, flight, or freeze response, and you can interpret that to mean we’re not supposed to essentially stress ourselves out because we’re supposed to avoid stress or eliminate stress (which is impossible by the way) because it’s not good for our bodies.

“Well, that’s not true. Even in caveman days, it was the hunter who was able to control the stress response and turn it into a performance behavior that would allow him to get the most meat, face down the charging tiger, and organize a team to defeat him. That was called leadership. So, just because we have stress everyday in our life, doesn’t mean it has to be debilitating or lead to disease in our bodies.”

That’s a quote from our recent Social Capitalist guest Mark Divine, CEO of SEALFIT, and US CrossFit. He suggested the following strategies to channel your stress into high performance and actionable success:

  1. Breath control. Breathing has become an unconscious body function for most people. To get control of your breath, concentrate on it, slow it down, deepen it, use the full capacity of your lungs, and use your diaphragm. Anytime you feel that stress coming on, kick into this breath. In a calm environment, Mark recommends a four-count inhale, a four-count hold, and then a four- count exhale. If you’re in an environment where your heart is racing and you need more oxygen, just slow it down and do a four-count inhale, then a four-count exhale. Continue reading

MyGreenlight’s Community Manager Shares The Reasons She’s a Believer

Hi Greenlight Community!

We’re announcing a new promotion today, and I wanted to give you my personal take on why I think signing up for the myGreenlight program will be the best thing you ever do for your career.

As you’ve probably begun to notice, the world operates through relationships. Whether you’re a natural connector or not, a deeper understanding of the science behind human interaction can only equip you with more weapons in your career arsenal.

Over the past two years I have taken a strong professional communication skill set to new heights by applying the relationship mastery principles taught in the myGreenlight program. My touch points with Greenlight Community members have deepened my understanding of how a variety of personality types successfully utilize our training to reach their career goals. It’s been an exciting two years of discovery, hearing stories from those motivated to make a necessary change for themselves and their careers.

People like….

Aimee Lucas, an admitted introvert, who found inspiration in the Blue Flame principle and used it to guide her connection goals and advance her career.

Mike Bruny who uses generosity to truly connect with like-minded people and gain entry to opportunities that allow him to pursue his passion to inspire young entrepreneurs to reach their dreams.

Sandra Lester, whose commitment to get an accountability buddy for networking opened doors to opportunities she hadn’t even imagined for herself and positioned her as a trusted expert in her industry and giving her the ability to receive more job leads.

As I have seen these success stories unfold, I can very confidently say that I truly believe anyone willing to put in the work to engage in the myGreenlight program and complete the missions can gain massive benefits.

This is a perfect time to join myGreenlight at a discounted rate.  And our Spring promotion is open to anyone. If you know someone who is ready to improve their relationship game, please share the link with them. If that person is you, join us!

Check out the promotion here – a $200 savings on our regular rates and unlimited access to all of the proven resources of myGreenlight.

Have questions about the program? Use the comments and I’ll answer them.

The Secret to Making Even One Small Change

What kind of change is on your mind today? It might be simple, like trying to get yourself to visit the gym daily. It might complex, like deciding how quickly to expand your business. Either way, we all know, change ain’t easy.

Accountability helps. Experience it yourself by trying a mission from one of the myGreenlight Relationship Bootcamp lessons: Powerful Accountability through a Bite-Sized Behavioral Change. This mission starts to build a practice of tapping your network for accountability – why go it alone when others can help?

Find an Accountability Buddy

Your Mission: By building accountability around a small behavior change, you will taste the transformative power of having a committed network that won’t let you fail.

Make a commitment around a behavioral change that you know will improve your work: e.g., getting into the office 15 minutes earlier, exercising in the morning, or spending the first 15 minutes of every workday pinging prospects or circles of influence. Then email a target contact whom you think would enjoy the mission him- or herself. Ask him to be your partner in accountability by setting a meeting one week out to check in on your follow through — or you can even check in with each other daily. If you want to take it a step further, make this a regular weekly check-in during which you share a success, a challenge, and a commitment for the week going forward.

What’s your bite-sized change?

Reclaiming “Resolutions” for Truly Transformative Progress

On the first day of the new year, I had a small group over to my 4th floor walk-up in downtown New York to eat black-eyed peas and collard greens – more than 5 pounds of collard greens, in fact. Apparently, we are hungry for the good fortune they are supposed to bring. As E. B. White famously wrote, “No one should come to New York to live unless he is willing to be lucky.”

While we ate, we each wrote down an intention for the New Year to add to a communal pot. A friend asked, “What’s the difference between intentions and resolutions?

My take: “resolutions” have gotten a bad rap – they feel at best like a superficial social ritual

Resolutions, Intentions, or.... Rulin's? (a la Woody Guthrie)

used to sell gym memberships, and at worst like a burdensome “should” that kills the spirit of play in our creative, productive endeavors.

“Intentions” shakes off all that bad juju to suggest an active, voluntary commitment to a unique personal goal or ethos for the year.

But truthfully, I felt a little wishy-washy even as I defended the new term. Yes, intentions are more gentle on the soul. But sometimes, what’s needed is true resolve. Is real transformation ever truly gentle?

I thought about that again on January 2, when I set out for my first run of 2012. Two years ago I launched, a year-long blogging project to document my attempt to run 1000 miles in 2010. (This past year my friend Amy took over the site to run her thousand miles so you’d have to go back in the archives to see any of my posts. I made it to 900-something miles before getting benched by tendon trouble.)

The Thousand Mile Year was a very concrete goal that I executed with a high level of accountability and personal investment, thanks to the blog. I was resolved, very resolved, and as a result, I changed my physical life and sense of identity indelibly. I became a runner that year, and it’s a gift that I continue to be grateful for.

One other revelation came out of my January gathering: Sharing goals with a group of friends – some of whom may be from your official professional network, but have become part of your intentional network – is an incredibly nurturing experience, as is hosting. It is your opportunity to feel the physical reality of your self-curated support network. When they’re dispersed, it can be harder to feel the safety net. But believe me, it’s there.

Here’s to building that support network even stronger in 2012 – by helping them to achieve their goals, as you humbly but purposefully work on your own.

On that, I’m resolved.

How about you? Are you in the intentions or resolutions camp? Either way, what’s your first step?

Sara Grace is myGreenlight’s Program Director.

Set Your Goals for Success in Six Steps

You probably have plenty of experience setting goals. But for whatever reason, you haven’t often followed through. It happens. They weren’t the right goals, or you didn’t have support to keep you on track. Or perhaps your goals changed over time, and now you MUST re-evaluate. Six Steps to Set Your Goals For Success will provide the tools you need to set commitments that matter, and achieve goals with consistency and focus.

Do you have your goals for set for 2012?