Leadership and Happiness – an Interview with His Holiness, The Dalai Lama by HBS leader, Arthur Brooks. – Jan 17, 2021


Source : Youtube

Hello, your holiness. It’s wonderful, to see you again. Happy new year.
I am so excited to see you and my students and people all over the world have been looking forward to this today; this morning in India, this evening in Boston, Massachusetts, where we are today. I’d like to say hello to everyone who’s watching this from all different parts of the world.

My name is Arthur Brooks. I’m a professor at the Harvard business school in the Harvard Kennedy School, where I teach the subject of leadership and happiness, and I as well as everyone joining us today, we are thrilled to be with his holiness the Dalai Lama. the Dalai Lama is a living bodhisattva.

He is the spiritual leader of Tibetan buddhism and the Tibetan people since 1959. He has lived outside Tibet, making his home in Dharamsala, India, from where he joins us today.

The Dalai Lama works tirelessly for the dignity and prosperity of the Tibetan people and brings a message of compassion and love and enlightenment and humility to the entire world in a world that’s torn apart by hatred.

The Dalai Lama is a voice for human unity: over the decades he has become the most recognized religious figure in the world, revered by billions of people and influencing leaders globally.

He has changed countless lives and those lives include my own life. His holiness and I have been friends for seven years. He has been a beloved teacher in my personal journey, as well as my leadership journey.

He has helped me to understand that I am one of seven billion human beings – that we are all brothers and sisters, and that my sacred leadership calling is to lift other people up and bring them together in bonds of solidarity.

You will see tonight in Boston in the morning, of course, in India, how he has taught me these things and how all of us can learn these things as well. In addition to our worldwide livestream audience, we are joined by a group of my students at the Harvard business School from all over the world.

They will be introducing themselves and asking questions later in the program. We’re also joined by Srikanth Dattar, the Dean of the Harvard Business school, Nithin Noria, the former Dean of the Harvard Business School, Douglas eldendorf, the Dean of the Harvard Kennedy School and Len Schlesinger, who teaches leadership and happiness with me at the Harvard Business School. And now now we’ll start our conversation about leadership and happiness with his holiness.

Your holiness, you have taught me almost everything of importance that I know about the science and art of happiness. You’ve taught many years about this subject.

Tibetan Buddhism teaches that there are four sources of happiness: spirituality, enlightenment, worldly satisfaction and wealth.

Spirituality is first on the list, so let’s start with spirituality. Yes, what is the importance of spirituality and meditation in attaining happiness?

Firstly, I am great honor and feel very happy.


In having discussion with your harvard university’s professors and my old friend and some students. So now, happiness is, i think very purpose of our daily life, for happy life. If you see that things become really unbearable, then die – worst case suicide.

Even you see without a suicide but mentally unbearable sort of situation, then that really, the will to live, reduce so automatically you see, you will die like that. So, therefore, the self-confidence with hope is the key factor for our survival.

Now uh, usually I sort of expressing or description um, hygiene of physical and hygiene of emotion, hygiene or physical. Is we usually take care now, hygiene of emotion it’s? It’s entirely different on yourself, so that means you see, fear of anger.

You see these mental sort of uh attitude really reduce your life. So mental level – happy and a full self-confidence, but then that mental sort of way of thinking really give us some kind of will.

My life is something meaningful – something useful. That kind of the thinking gives you inner strength. So now healthy mind depends on these mental level. Self-Confidence for that self-confidence with sufficient reason, ultimately, is see peace of mind, and also you see your life as we are social animal.

You are one of the member of the social animal. So by birth you see the taking care of each other. That’s very nature, human nature. So your life, you see, always you see helping others, and then you see you get the feeling of my life.

Uh, really meaningful life as a social animal. This is just extremely selfish thinking. It’s actually against social animal sort of thinking. Social animal by nature take care of your group. Just oneself – always think oneself it’s actually impractical like that.

So therefore I always tell people. Firstly, we need some sense of oneness of 7 billion human being on this planet. We have to live together and individuals future depend on them, one individual, one of the seven billion human beings or city – group like that, so that this is on that level.

You see too much self-centered thinking, selfish is actually against that nature. So extreme, this is selfish way is actually destroying your own or happy life.

Look children at young age. They don’t care.

What color, what races, what nationality, what religion so long as we play together and then you see there is a real sense of community there. I feel once we join school, then not much talking oneness of human being, but rather different country, different religion or different color, and then also you see within same religion, same sort of color, but then the rich and poor.

There are too many distinction, differences, discrimination. So so i feel now today’s world. As I mentioned earlier at the beginning, young age. There is sort of feeling of oneness, then gradually join school.

Then too much emphasis about these differences. Then the oneness of human brother sisters is diminishing, rather my nation, my country or my race, like that. So therefore education is very, very important.

Then the entire sort of world education, difficult to say. but like Harvard University, one famous university – you see, should carry some of these principles. Then show other universities, like that Howard University, very, very famous.

So so I’m very happy to have this sort of opportunity to talk. Then now hear some students, some students or some younger professors. So I would like to take questions. Our students will ask questions in just in just a minute.

They’re ready with a number of good questions. Okay, so i would like to have a more complicated question: okay, a more complicated question so that you help me fully utilize my brain.

If questions just a silly question, then my brain sleep: okay, no silly questions, [, Laughter, ],

Your Holiness. I want to ask you about leadership and and happiness. You have met leaders from all over the world and you’ve given them a lot of advice.

They have a lot of money and a lot of power, but many leaders are not happy people, so this is a hard question, I think. Why are so many leaders unhappy people?

I feel very much sort of depends on our education system – then leadership.

Also, human brothers sisters are basically the same. We are the member of social animal. Now, as I already mentioned, it is through education, we emphasis a sense of oneness of 7 billion human being. We are social animal so that I feel our education not much sort of emphasis on that level.

So then, basically, we really need a sense of oneness of human being , and you see emphasis my nation, their nation, my religion, their religion. These are secondary level, so, basically, we are same human being.

We have to live on this planet together. We all share the same planet, same world and then to this reality, there was the economy and also now climate situation. You see there is no sort of way to make distinction – our nation, their nation. ,

We have to live together and the economy also global economy, then the environment. Now we all share, for example, global warming. We all share same way. So now, unlike I think past century, we can just emphasis my nation, my continent. Now time you can no longer say that. We should say we human beings on this planet.

We simply, you see, have to think we, rather than just my nation like that, so so now today this intelligence, human intelligence, now think for wider way, not just my nation, my people but think about humanity.

Because we have to live together and we all facing same problem: economy, problem, then the ecology problem, these things – so I am emphasizing importance of concept of oneness of seven billion human being.

We have to think entire humanity entire world.

Thank you, Your holiness. When you meet a leader who’s an unhappy person, what advice do you give that person? What advice do you give an unhappy leader so that the leader can be a happier person that’s?

A difficult question? I think some leaders, I think difficulties, I think their own creation.

In my lifetime I met a number of leaders, including religious leaders or political leaders. You see, most case those leaders more open-mind, more liberal, more happier. Is it too much also they thinking oneself, as I mentioned earlier, you see and again, the leaders come from society and leaders.

Also you see through our existing school, so now education system, I think a key factor. We should pay more attention about education, how to educate human brothers, sisters more as a wiser and more open-minded like that.

So this system, the whole education is such the people – entire community. From that kind of education, then certain sort of thinking, more narrow-minded thinking. Then leaders come from that society – same – so we can’t sort of blame each of those individuals, I think whole system.

I feel I always talking our education system must be more compassionate, think, humanity, rather than my nation, my nation, like that. So i hope Harvard University you see, more research, how to develop education system which eventually bring more wiser sort of student, so that’s very important, and then leadership comes from that kind of education – automatically more wiser like that.

Our students here today are the next generation of leaders that want to lift up the world and to bring compassion to people just like you say, which is why this is so important. One of the things that we find is that, even though we’re all surrounded by people all the time, you one time said, we feel lonely.

When we’re, not alone, a lot of people feel very lonely today. Why do so many people feel lonely, and what can we do to help them?

I think that’s your own sort of way of thinking. Otherwise, now with telephone and television, we can reach everywhere.

In ancient time, of course, for example, when we tibetan. inside Tibet, then India very far. Now we become India and open society, and then from here you see a telephone everywhere. So I think, with technology, the oneness of human world now become much more clear.

So I think now, with the technology very, very helpful, you see to communicate each other very easily. Meantime, ultimately depend on one individual mind and attitude.. So I think, for example, like a Tibet in ancient time, in normal, there are really lonely one family, two families like that.

Now today you see big cities, millions of people live together, so their way of life is very much depend on the rest of the community. But mentally those Tibetan who remain lonely, but mentally happy and sense of also the group – very clear.

So they one family feel next family, if I need some help, I can ask. Very strong sense of one community. Without that in big cities, then next to your room, people there, but you do not know and instead it’s not trust it’s fear, distress like that, so this, i think – the Individual mental sort of way of thinking and this society more compassionate society, then the sense of the sense of community easily come not much sort of talking about compassion, just selfish self-esteem, then lonely feeling.

Do you believe, your holiness that to be less to be less lonely that one should be more compassionate toward others? In other words, if i bring happiness to other people, will i become a happier person myself? I remember, i think, the new york business family chicago, you see.

Oh one time you say of course, uh several times we met and they take some group of Tibetan refugees settled in their area and then the reason they told me the Tibetan community, usually you see very friendly and very strong sense of same community, and a more compassionate attitude, so he very much impressed that kind of attitude you see should spread in America. So that’s the main reason he told me he took some I think a few hundred Tibetan settler near his place. So usually wherever is a Tibetan live, you see people also notice more harmony, more compassion, but except a few cases. Otherwise you see very peaceful, very peaceful like that.

So therefore, now in big city, several millions, but mentally lonely like this – in some area. You see people very few, but no not having is a lonely feeling.

Your holiness, what’s the biggest mistake that leaders make? The biggest mistake for happiness that leaders make when they’re leaders of nations or their leaders of companies?

What is the mistake that you see leaders making all the time that you could, if you could correct it, that you would.

I think same community? I think European Union’s leader, you see since they create union, particularly like France, French and Germany in the first world war.

Second, world war, arch enemy, but then after second world war, under the leadership of antara, because arjuna and jugul you see they uh develop. They create union of europe. So those leaders in the european union see they, I think that automatically in their mind, when they say use the word, we immediately human union now. England is so far a little complicated, so they so you see it’s, a more so diversity. A sense of community then mentally also more peace and the sense of we and much stronger like that.

So eventually, I think uh, like european union, eventually should create in Latin America and Africa.

So eventually, I think the whole world should have one union of human brothers sisters. I feel like that.

I cannot see my life lifetime, but hoping so those younger generation. It is your responsibility, think more serious and make some effort.

Your Holiness. Let’s talk to some of our students.



Source : Youtube

Matthew McConaughey – This Is Why You’re Not Happy | One Of The Most Eye Opening Speeches

When it comes to finding true happiness, it has nothing to do with rewards. It’s joy that guides us. The following excerpt of an inspirational talk by #MatthewMcConaughey lays it out for us in a simple, direct way. Enjoy and benefit from Matthew’s wise words.



We’ve all got two wolves in us. A good one and a bad one. And they both want to eat. Best I can tell we just got to feed that good one. A little more than the other one. Happiness is an emotional response to an outcome.

If I win, I will be happy. If I don’t, I won’t. It’s an if-then cause-and-effect quid pro quo standard that we cannot sustain., Because we immediately raise it every time we attain it. See happiness, happiness demands a certain outcome.

It is result reliant. And I say: if happiness is what you’re after then, you’re gonna be let down frequently and you’re gonna be unhappy. Much of your time.

Joy, though. Joy’s a different thing…It’s something else.

Joy is not a choice. It’s, not a response to some result.. It’s a constant. Joy is the feeling that we have from doing what we are fashioned to do, no matter the outcome…

Now, personally, as an actor, I started enjoying my work and literally being more happy when I stopped trying to make the daily labor. For example. I need this film to be a box-office success. You know I need my performance to be acknowledged. I need the respect of my peers.

All those are reasonable aspirations, but the truth is, as soon as I work the daily making of the movie, the doing of the deed became the reward in itself for me. I got more box-office more accolades and respect than I ever had before.

Joy is always in process. It’s under construction.. It is in constant approach. Alive and well in the doing of what we’re fashioned to do. And enjoying. The easiest way to dissect success is through gratitude.

Thanks for that which we do have, for what is working. Appreciating the simple things we sometimes take for granted. We give thanks for these things and that gratitude reciprocate. Creating more to be thankful.

It’s, really simple and it works. I’m, not saying be in denial of your failures. No, we can learn from them too, but only if we look at them constructively. As a means to reveal what we are good at – what we can get better at – what we do succeed at.

We try our best.. We don’t always do our best., And since we are the architects of our own lives, let’s study the habits, the practices, the routines that we have that lead to and feed our success.

Our joy, our honest pain, our laughter, our earned tears. Let’s dissect that and give thanks for those things. And when we do that, guess what happens? We get better at them. And we have more to dissect.

It’s a get-rich-quick on the Internet riches, 15 minutes of fame world that we live in and we see it every day., But we all want to succeed. So the question that we’ve got to ask ourselves is what success is to us?

What success is to you? Is it more money? That’s fine. I got nothing against money.. Maybe it’s, a healthy family.. Maybe it’s, a happy marriage.. Maybe it’s to help others to be famous or to be spiritually sound.

To leave the world a little bit better place than you found. It. Continue to ask yourself that question. Now your answer may change over time and that’s fine.. But do yourself this favor., Whatever your answer is don’t choose anything that will jeopardize your soul.

Prioritize who you are, who you want to be, and don’t spend time with anything that antagonizes your character.

Life is not a popularity contest. Be brave., Take the hill, but first answer that question.. What’s my hill? For me, it’s, a measurement of five things..

  • Fatherhood.
  • Good husband.
  • Health: mind, body and spirit
  • Career and..
  • Friendships.

These are what’s important to me in my life. Right now., because I want to keep all five in healthy shape., And I know that if I don’t take care of them, if I don’t keep up maintenance on them, one of them is gonna get weak. It’s gonna dip too deep into the debit section. It’s going to go bankrupt. It’s gonna get sick. Die.. So first we have to define success for ourselves.

And then we have to put in our work to maintain it. Take that daily tally. Tend our guardian. Keep the things that are important to us in good shape.

Defining ourselves by what we are not is the first step that leads us to really knowing who we are.

You know that group of friends that you hang out with that really might not bring out the best in you? You know they gossip too much or they’re kind of shady? They really aren’t gonna be there for you in a pinch.

Or how about that bar that we keep going to… That we always seem to have the worst hangover from. Or that computer screen. Right. The computer screen that keeps giving us an excuse not to get out of the house and engage with the world and get some real human interaction.

I bet that food that we keep eating tastes so good going down, but it makes us feel like crap. The next week we feel lethargic and we keep putting on weight.

Those people, those places, those things…

STOP GIVING THEM YOUR TIME AND ENERGY. Just don’t go there. I mean put them down. And when you do this, when you do put them down, when you quit going in there, you inadvertently find yourself spending more time and in more places that are healthy for you. That bring you more joy. Why? Because you just eliminated the who’s, the where the what’s that were keeping you from your identity…

Knowing who we are is hard. It’s hard. So give yourself a break. Eliminate who you are not first and you’re gonna find yourself where you need to be.

Take the lid off the man-made routes that we put above ourselves and always play like an underdog.

Source : Youtube

Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum: Transcendental Meditation for Heart Health

On my Podcast REACH, I will be interviewing a transformative meditative leader who helps individuals and employees reduce stress and enhance health through meditation.

As I research more about meditation, and the different types of meditation one can do, I was drawn to Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, who is a believer and practicer of Transcendental Meditation for Heart Health.

I had a heart condition in 2012 where I was having more than 20,000 PVCs (Premature Ventricular Contractions) every 24 hours. There were times I thought my heart was going to stop, or race so fast that I would have a heart attack. One time I was driving my son to High School and I was on the Golden Gate Bridge going into San Francisco. There are no shoulders on the GG Bridge – nowhere to pull over. I went into an episode and literally wanted to stop the car on the bridge and scream for an ambulance.

Instead, I opened all of the windows, turned the air conditioning on full blast and told (not asked) my son to talk to me –  tell me I’m OK, I’m doing great – basically distract me.I took deep breaths trying not to hyperventilate. I wasn’t sure I was going to make it over the bridge. I literally thought I was going to die – and would have been OK with it as opposed to the freaked out experience.

A little way over the bridge it subsided, but then it kicked in again on Lombard Street as traffic was stopped on all sides of me. Just breathe…

Somehow, someway I was able to drop my son off and make my way back to a bathroom in the Presidio Park, go into the bathroom and splash cold water on my face.

I made it home and passed out from exhaustion.

Something was up.

It wasn’t until after a few appointments with a cardiology PVC specialist that I learned that my heart issue had to do with STRESS.

Being the overachiever I am, I hid it well. But I was under A LOT OF STRESS. Stress in my marriage, stress with my work and stress with running too many marathons.

I ended up having a heart ablation, which helped, but didn’t cure it. I meditate every morning now and refuse to let stress consume me. I don’t absorb other people’s stress either. I left my marriage. And…I don’t run marathons anymore, but I do jog a few miles a couple of days a week, which seems fine.

Here is Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum with all the advice and science behind it. Funny coincidence….my first child was born at the same hospital in NYC where she is a heart specialist.

Stay tuned next week for my interview with yet another meditation specialist.


I’m dr. Suzanne Steinbaum. I’m the director of women’s heart health at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. For many years, I’ve been spokesperson for Go Red For Women through the American Heart Association, speaking to people across the country, about risk factors for heart disease, and throughout this time I was able to address the major risk factors:

high blood pressure, high Cholesterol, diabetes, sedentary lifestyle, family history and smoking, but it’s not been until very recently that we’ve understood the impact of stress living with that fight-or-flight response that increases epinephrine, norepinephrine and cholesterol.

These are hormones that flow throughout our bodies. During that stress response, it increases blood pressure, they increase cholesterol and they increase inflammation. All of these things lead to high blood pressure lead to plaque in the arteries, and that, in turn, is what leads to heart disease.

When I prescribe a statin that can lower cholesterol, I’m happy when I get efficacy of treatment at about 30 %. But now I know when I treat stress I can get as much as a 48 to 66 percent improvement with TM.

The American Heart Association made a scientific statement that Transcendental Meditation was the only form of stress management and meditation to reduce blood pressure. It is the most efficacious way for us to treat one of the major risk factors of heart disease, which is stress.

There have been 350 studies and 28 million dollars put towards the research of Transcendental. Meditation studies have shown that it not only decreases blood pressure, but it helps people who have heart disease function, better live healthier lives and it actually has been shown to reduce stroke heart attacks along with high blood pressure. It is a very effective treatment tool.

Source : Youtube

Rick Leaman, Vice Chairman of Moelis & Company, speaks on “Ten Steps for Success”

– [Announcer] This is Duke University. – I’m delighted to be here on behalf of all of you, to welcome you to your graduation. Dean Boulding, faculty, thank you for having me. Family, thank you for being here to support your kids, and most importantly, to all of you, congratulations.

This is a big moment. I think any time you go through something like this, it is a big moment, you need to do something special for yourself. So I don’t know what that is for each individual out there, but figure out something special to do and do it quickly so you can really reward yourself for a lot of hard work in a degree that’s well-deserved.

This is a great thrill for me. You can’t even put this on your bucket list, speaking at Cameron Indoor Stadium. How do you do that? Who would’ve thought a kid that graduated from Duke in 1984 with a 2.9, (audience chuckling) I don’t think Dean Boulding knew that. I think I had a 3.7 at Fuqua so I made up for it. But, yeah, I had a 2.9 and here I am speaking at Cameron Indoor Stadium and per the student speaker, I’m still learning.

I learned something today which is, you should probably wear socks when you’re sitting up on the podium at graduation. So what are we gonna talk about today? Throughout my career, I’ve just noticed some things that people do that don’t make a lot of sense.

And as I accumulated these things, I’ve developed a presentation that I give to all of our incoming associates and analysts at Moelis & Company and prior at UBS. I call it my 10 tips for success.

They’re really not the kind of thing you learn in a classroom or in a training program, but they’re the kind of thing that, if you don’t catch on to them, they could hurt your career. So here we go, I’m gonna through my top 10 tips, and the first one is, take notes.

I notice you don’t have pen or pencil, or paper, so you don’t need to do that. But you’re gonna go into life as a junior member of a team. The junior member of the team takes notes in a meeting.

I cannot tell you how many meetings I go to, and I’m not taking notes anymore, where I expect the junior member to take those notes and they don’t do it. So grab a pen, get a good notebook, and make sure when you’re on your next job, wherever that is, you’re taking notes.

As an aside, when I give this presentation to the incoming class, the college, the analysts who have just come out of college, they grab their pen and they’re taking notes right away. What’s interesting is, the MBA students just sit there and stare at you.

Now they’re not Fuqua students, mind you. They tend to come from schools in the northeast that are in a division that has something to do with a plant, but anyway, just take notes. Number two, always admit what you don’t know.

It’s okay. You’re gonna get dozens of questions. What were same-store sales, what did the CEO say in the shareholder letter, what’s the credit rating at that company? Depending on what your job is, the questions will be different.

It’s okay to say you don’t know. You can say, I don’t know but I’m gonna get the answer. I don’t know, I’ll find that out. I should’ve known, I don’t, I’ll get the answer.

But don’t throw something out there that you think is correct. It’s okay to say you don’t know. It’s fatal, it’s fatal to make it up. It’s just not gonna work for you, so just admit what you don’t know and you’ll be fine.

You may get a little grief for it, but that’s okay. Number three, respect your elders. I’m not talking about the CEO, I’m not talking about the CFO, I’m not talking about an SVP. But the chances are, you’re gonna join an organization post your graduation here, where there will be people that have been working at that organization longer than you’ve been alive.

They’re administrative assistants, they’re in the mail-room, they’re in the copy center, it’s the receptionist that greets everybody every day with a smile when they come in. These people deserve the utmost respect and I’ve watched too many people come into a firm and establish what I would call an overly aggressive senior-subordinate relationship with these folks.

And let me tell you, my assistant, Ellen, I think she’s been doing her job for 40 years, she worked for my boss before she worked for me. If she whispers in my ear, Freddy’s not such a nice guy, Freddy is having a really bad day.

These people can help your career and they can also hurt your career. So please respect your elders. Any Freddy’s out there? Good, I picked a safe name. Number four, confidentiality. This is different by industry.

In my industry, it’s paramount, you have to maintain confidentiality. But what I’ve found is, it’s really not worth talking about what you do at work outside of work. You can talk in general terms, but you have information that’s important to people and you just don’t know how that information’s gonna be used.

So my recommendation to people is, don’t talk about what you’re doing outside of work. And I’ll give you a real-life example. We got a call in our Houston office years ago from a client who wanted to use us on an acquisition.

Very exciting call, it’s a call you wanna get. We were told that we’d be paired up with Morgan Stanley, so, while that’s not so great, we were gonna be co-advisors with Morgan Stanley. Young man went out that night at a bar, saw his buddy from Morgan Stanley, said, I hear we’re gonna be working together, that’ll be fun.

Somehow, Morgan Stanley figured out who the client was, what the deal was, they called the client and said, hey, I just wanted to let you know that UBS is blabbing about the assignment you just gave. All he said was, we’re gonna be working together, and think of how that transformed into what could have been a death sentence for that professional.

Now as it turns out, the client loved this kid, he didn’t get fired, but I just don’t think it’s worth talking about what you’re working on at work. Keep it to yourself, in fact, I don’t even think my wife really knows what I do.

Honestly, it’s okay, she can’t slip up. She knows what city I’m in, but she never knows who I’m meeting with. So, number five, listening is sometimes more important than speaking. I remember this story to this day, and I still wake up in the middle of the night sometimes on this one.

So we were presenting to Capital Cities. For those of you that don’t know, Capital Cities owned the network ABC and they also owned a little thing called ESPN and just as an aside, Capital Cities merged with Disney, Disney had no idea what ESPN was 20 years ago.

Think of what it is today. Anyway, I was doing okay, I had made some good progress on some deals and we were in front of the CFO and I was determined to make my mark. A question came to the team and I’m the junior guy in the room and I’d go right in and answer the question.

And the CFO looks at me and goes, that’s completely wrong. So what did I do? I doubled down. I told him he was wrong (chuckles). Yeah, oh boy. Good news is, I didn’t get fired and as I said, the negative is, I’m 54 years old and I still wake up thinking about that meeting.

It’s okay to listen, you don’t have to make a statement in the first meeting. Number six, be very wary of consensus. We all get trapped with consensus. Everybody agrees, this is correct. Please challenge consensus.

You’re young, aggressive, thoughtful, intelligent students, this is what we need you to do, challenge consensus. I’ve had two examples in my career where consensus was completely wrong and the results were devastating.

In 1999, we were valuing tech companies on clicks, a click of a mouse. Oh, it’s gotta be worth a billion dollars. Sometimes, we valued them on revenues if they had revenues. We didn’t value them on cash flow ’cause none of them had cash flow.

But the Nasdaq had gone to 4000, it was soaring and the tech revolution was on. Dozens, hundreds of bankers, said, I’m not gonna be a consumer banker anymore, utility banker, health-care banker, I’m going to Silicon Valley to be a tech banker, because that’s what the future is, it’s all about technology.

Well, lo and behold, two years later the Nasdaq hit 1400, by the way, it took 10 years to get back to 4000. Actually, cash flow did matter. People actually started looking at balance sheets, how about that.

And hundreds and hundreds of bankers lost their job because they’d given up their good job working in consumer or utilities, whatever the case was, and they had to be a technology banker. Consensus was wrong.

It was a tech bubble and it hurt a lot of people. Fast-forward to 2007, 2008, the only good news about the tech bubble was it was an equity bubble, it wasn’t a debt bubble. Equity’s bad but you don’t lose everything.

Credit crisis is devastating. And in 2007, the CEO of Citigroups was asked, how do you feel about the credit markets? I remember he was in Tokyo at the time. And he said, as long as this music’s playing, we’re gonna keep dancing.

Think about that. Three months later, he lost his job due to unexpected credit losses at Citigroup. Fast-forward a year after that and the CFO of Lehman Brothers was quoted as saying, our liquidity framework and funding have stood by us very well.

Five days later, they went bankrupt. Consensus was that the credit markets were sound, housing could never go down, and we know what the outcome was, a devastating crisis that we’re all still paying the price for in 2017.

So, challenge consensus, it’s what we need you to do. Number seven, don’t go it alone. Teams win, individuals are risky. Now it’s really interesting, you wanna make a statement, you wanna have an impact, but I’ll tell you, teamwork is the key to success.

A real-life example for me, I sat in a bullpen with four people my first year at Smith Barney, I was 23 years old, and I needed to keep my job, I had no savings, I was married, and it was really important that I did well.

So we formed a team among those four, and every time we had a project, I would give my project to Paul Hoffer, to Murray, to Stan, and we’d all check each other’s work constantly. So I had three sets of eyes looking at my work and they had three sets of eyes looking at their work and so on and so on.

That’s how we got ahead, we formed a team in order to be successful. But individuals are risky, teams win. So I always wanna work on a team and I encourage you to do the same. Number eight, this is a tough one, patience.

Everybody wants to have an impact. Everybody wants to make a statement. I know you don’t wanna be called millennials, so I won’t use the word millennial like I just did twice. There’s this great presentation of an individual walking into a boss’s office and saying, look, I’ve gotta quit, I’m not making an impact.

And the response is, well, you’ve been here eight months. It takes time to make an impact. Somebody very near and dear to me fell into, what I call, the grass-is-greener syndrome. She had a good job but the grass was greener over at that job.

And she started interviewing, didn’t tell me, told her mother and her brother, didn’t tell me, it’s my daughter. And I just kept my mouth shut, and thank goodness, thank goodness the people never offered her a job.

She was interviewing for things, frankly, that I think she was overqualified for. Now she’s three years into her job as an associate in investment banking and I’m not saying it’s because it’s investment banking that I’m proud of her, but she’s killing it.

She’s making an impact and to my mind, she’s operating at a VP, second-year VP level. So take your time, be patient. It’s frustrating ’cause everybody wants to get that trophy, wants to climb the peak.

But you may be surprised, if you take your time, what comes out of it. Number nine. (chuckles) We had a little prop set up, it’s not working very well. Anyway, (phone rings) oh, there it is. Thanks, Dean.

That was my fault. 919-452-26, I don’t know this person, send it to voicemail. Don’t let that happen in a meeting. (audience laughs) Do not let that happen. Phone on vibrate, don’t look at it, put it away, don’t put it on the table in front of the client or in front of your colleagues.

Put this thing away. It’s a great invention, you can ask Siri what a stock price is and she’ll give it to you. How that works, I’m not really sure. But don’t let this thing dominate your professional career.

Put it away, tell the person you’re meeting with that you’re focused on them. And if this goes off at a client meeting, I’m telling you, you’re dead. So just put it away. I have this problem, it’s vibrating in my pocket, I think it’s one of my kids texting me, I’m like, ooh, I’m getting a text from my kid, I’ve gotta look at it, I can’t.

So put it away. That’s number nine. Not as well executed as I’d hoped, that’s my fault, that’s my fault, my fault. I’d put it on silent ’cause I was worried that if I got up here and it rang before we got to that point, it would typically be my wife and then I’d have to answer it and then I’d have to tell her I’m busy and that would’ve been embarrassing, so I put it on vibrate and that’s why it didn’t (mutters), anyway.

Last but not least, attitude. I get asked time and again, what’s the one thing that differentiates professionals in my business, and I don’t think it matters that it’s my business, any business.

And it is a positive mental attitude. It makes all the difference in the world. It moves a three to a one, a two to a one. It makes your reviews more positive. It is the key, and by the way, it’s circular.

You’re more positive, people around you are more positive ’cause they see you’re so positive, they say, well, I’ve gotta be positive, too. It’s the one key to getting ahead in a career.

And I’ll give you an example of how I look at that in my business. In my business, and hopefully you guys don’t do this, we work sometimes 18 hours a day seven days a week. Nobody wants to do that, that’s ridiculous, but we do it for some reason.

So it’s Friday afternoon, you get a call from a client saying, I need you to work 24/7 the next three days, I need you in my office Tuesday morning. And all of a sudden, you go, oh that’s great ’cause I just got a piece of business and then you go, oh god, that’s awful, I’ve gotta call the junior team and tell them they’re not going to the beach this weekend.

So these folks are 30 minutes from hitting the shuttle bus out to the Hamptons and you gotta blow up their weekend. You don’t wanna make that call but you have to make that call, the client’s told you, you need to be there on Tuesday with a full deck.

You make that call to that junior person and you say, I’ll use Freddy since I picked on him earlier, Freddy, I’m sorry, I’ve gotta blow up your weekend, we’re running full steam from here on until Tuesday morning.

Freddy says, hey, not a problem, let’s get on it. When do you wanna meet? That statement alone is gonna move that person to the front of the class. So positive mental attitude makes all the difference in the world.

So there they are, my top 10 tips for success. Something to think about. Hopefully something to learn a little bit about as well. And then in closing, I would say, congratulations, you should be very proud of yourself, do something special for yourself.

I will likely be at Shooter’s on Saturday. If any of you are there, please stop by and say hello.

Source : Youtube

Why You Don’t Need to Write a Cover Letter: And What You DO Need to do to Get the Interview

Cover letters used to be necessary, but having spent more than 15 years as a high-level Recruiter, I am here to tell you that you don’t need to write a Cover Letter in order to get the interview.

Let’s face it. Searching for a new job, especially during the COVID pandemic, is not easy. And, it’s not fun. But there is a process you can use that will get you more calls than the dreaded Cover Letter.

When I was in recruiting, primarily in the financial sector (some Media and Tech too), the first thing I told candidates before reviewing their resume or CV, was

Don’t write a Cover Letter. NO Cover Letter.

I’m sure many of them thought I was nuts. I got a lot of pushback. I need to have a Cover Letter so I can pitch myself, complement the company, show my enthusiasm, or sum up my experience.


Long Cover Letters are just a bunch of fluff. And fluff does not get you the interview. Not writing one does not mean you are lazy. But there is a way to write the opening communication that will work for you.

Think about it…

We live in the instant age.

  • Boomerang on Instagram for short looping videos.

  • Twitter for 144 character posts and short videos.

  • TinyURL to make all those long links readable.

  • Oevo for 7-second videos.

  • Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime… shows broken up into digestible bites so you binge.

  • LOTS of white space in articles.

  • Posts of only a few words like these 7 from #WinstonChurchill


So what makes you think a potential HR Director or Division Manager is going to spend the time reading your very boring Cover Letter? They may read the first line or two, but if that doesn’t grab them, they won’t even bother with your Resume or CV – that is if it has even been requested.

HINT: don’t send your Resume or CV unless it’s requested.

We’ll talk about how to write your best one yet in a later blog post.

BTW, this blog is already too long! So I’m going to get right to the point.

You write a 4-6 line intro. That’s is. No more.

AND, you don’t send it to the black hole of Human Resources who are very talented, but very overworked employees who just don’t have time for you, unless your intro says IVY League School name…

Tell me more you may be saying. If not, thanks for reading this far.

Before you write the 4-6 line intro, you find the person who heads the division that you want to work for in the company.

How do you do this? Go to the company website, find them, and get their email.

If they don’t list it, find someone else’s and use the same string. First name.last@company.com or whatever it is.

If you can’t find it that way, you go to LinkedIn and find their profile. And that’s where you reach out if you don’t have their direct email.


  1. Find the person in the company you want to work for.
  2. Get their email from the website or find their profile on LinkedIn.

Once you have their contact, you want to learn a little about them. Even better, something that relates to you, that creates an instant bond.

What kinds of things do this?

  • Where did they go to undergrad, grad?
  • Where are they from?
  • What are their interests?
  • Are you affiliated with any similar organizations?
  • What has their career path been – are there any similarities?
  • Do you both go back to the Mayflower?
    • Just seeing if you’re paying attention. I actually do go back to the Mayflower and found a client just by that connection.

Now that you have done your RESEARCH, you prepare your 4-6 line intro. The opening and close are extra.

Dear Mr. or Ms. X,

I would love the opportunity to meet with you to learn more about your career path at (COMPANY).

You run the division that I have always imagined being part of and contributing to in a meaningful way. My education and background support my interest.

I noticed that you went to Penn. I did too and really appreciate connecting with fellow alum.

Do you have time next week to meet in person or over the phone? I am happy to work around your schedule.

Look forward to hearing from you,




So what are you saying in this abbreviated, readable intro?

  1. You show interest right away by wanting to hear their story. People love to talk about themselves. Let them.
  2. You compliment them and they feel admired. Who doesn’t want to know they matter?
  3. You touch on something you have in common. You can find something you have in common with anyone.
  4. You ask politely for a meeting. And you are specific.
  5. You expect they will reply

See all the white space? Every sentence or two is its own paragraph. It’s easy on the eyes and gets to the point.

NOTE: Do not attach your Resume. If you are connecting on LinkedIn they will see your profile.

If they are interested, they will ask for your CV or direct you to their executive assistant to set up a meeting. Or they may do that themself. Even better. Whatever way, they will respond.

Let me know how it goes for you!

How to Keep Your Workforce Engaged – Really!

How do you keep your employees engaged while working remotely or remotely working (as in the slightest degree of)?

With so many distractions facing your workforce, and without direct oversight of your employees, you probably ask yourself…

am I really getting this employee’s time, attention and/or best work?

It’s natural to question, especially when you’re not even in contact with your employees for blocks of time each day. 

Yes, as a great manager, which you likely are, you are supposed to delegate and then trust that your employees will get the work done.

You’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. However you approach it, you are seen as a micromanager, a non-believer, or someone who is not acting as a manager should.

So what do you do? How do you get your employees to stay engaged?

You give them a reason to be.

Here are some ways that can help. Strategies I have used and recommended to clients. Give one or more of them a try and let me know the result.

Shutterstock: licensed

1. FUN

Fun is very important when it comes to work. I know it sounds contradictory, but fun equates to freedom, and we all want freedom.

If we’re not having fun, then we are only working. And soon, work becomes just work and we find ourselves seeking out those distractions just so we don’t have to work anymore. 

Everyone loves fun. Why shouldn’t we? We had fun as kids, right? 

I give a talk/workshop (more online to companies now), called TGIM. I bet you can figure out what that stands for.

The goal of the talk is to help companies learn how to work with the many generations in their workforce in a collaborative, cooperative, productive, and enjoyable manner. That’s even harder when everyone is working from home. The key? FUN.

Here’s a small excerpt from my talk. I omitted all the studies and stories to give you the essence.

…I’d like to talk to you about a different perspective of how we Boomers grew up. Boomers grew up playing a lot – outside – UNSUPERVISED. We didn’t come in until mom rang the bell.

We played well-known games and made-up games. We created the rules and we let anyone join in. Even the odd kid in the neighborhood. All kids are awkward at some point so who cares? We didn’t. Whoever showed up got to play. We played lots of fun games, like Hide n’ Go Seek, Sardines, Hopscotch, and Wireball. Operator was fun; it’s how we learned to gossip and tell secrets. Spin the Bottle was a great one once our hormones began to rage. 

The whole idea of unsupervised play was that we experienced FREEDOM, and we didn’t come in until mom rang the bell.

Now some families had horns. Some had moms with loud voices or ear-piercing gongs. We all knew our sound and when we heard it we darted home for dinner because family dinner time was important. Homework, not so much.

So, what were the skills we learned during all of this unsupervised freedom?

When we had the time to be creative, we discovered our passions. We took the time to lay in the grass and look at the clouds and say, what is that? Let’s tell a story. I think that’s a dragon with a giant ladybug on his back and they are on an adventure to a land where the water is filled with candy and happiness. That kid went on to work in the gaming industry.

When we played, we learned how to work as a team. If you’re playing Sardines and someone’s hiding, you have to find a way to hide with them. Be as quiet as you can while someone else is trying to find you to hide with you too. The last one to hide loses. So you’re learning how to work as a team. We learned how to organize. Who’s in charge, who’s on which team, what are the rules?

We learned how to compete too. Everyone wanted to win whatever game we played. When we played King of the Hill, we’d try to push everyone else off the grassy knoll so that we were the last one standing. Or with Hide n’ Go Seek we learned how to take calculated risks as to when we decided to run to the base so that we weren’t caught by IT. To me Hide n’ Go Seek is a little bit like the movie Hunger Games, you just don’t kill each other. We just wanted to get to base and not get tagged out. And so we learned calculated risks, how to pay attention to our senses and how to just go for it. Sometimes by not being fully prepared and simply jumping in, we learn the most about life. A lot of the jobs we jump into, we’re not fully prepared. Like my first TV job…

But then it was time to grow up. Many of our silent generation parents told us it was time to get RESPONSIBLE. So we put away our childish freedom ways and we got responsible.

And how did all these skills we learned as kids during our playtime enter into our work style? We became productive, hardworking, and very competitive. We became achievement-oriented. We worked (and still do) as team players and we like to mentor…

When we started having our own kids, we changed the cycle. The cycle that has turned the GENx and Millennial Generations into societal perceptions they don’t deserve.

And guess who caused that label? 

More on that later…

I have many fun games that I play with corporate client teams. Games that are fun, but also productive. Games that teach leadership, creativity, collaboration and a team approach to success. We do these on Zoom lately, but they are still very productive. If you would like to learn more, feel free to reach out to me directly: jody@jodybmiller.com

2. ASK

Your employees are the soul of your enterprise. From the person who answers the phone to the top dog. Every person plays a part.

So doesn’t it make sense to ASK them how they are doing? If they’re happy? Are they being challenged?

When someone feels that they matter, they naturally perform better because they feel appreciated. They work harder, longer and truly desire to deliver the best work they can. And they are happy doing it. So ASK how your employees are doing.

You can use some of our neuro-science-backed surveys, or you can make up your own. Either way, ASK.

Here are some questions you can ask your employees to gauge their engagement.

A. What do you love the most about your job? What would you change? Do you feel that you are in the best role for you?

B. Do you think you are being paid fairly? If not, why not? How would you change the payout structure for your position? How would you add incentives?

C. Are you interested in learning more about the company? Other roles? Outside education? What interests you most and what would you like to learn about?

D. What is the best part of communicating with your colleagues? Are there ways to improve communication? How do you feel about meetings?

E. If this was your company, what would you emphasize? What would you do differently?

I love reading Brian Tracy’s books. One of his famous pieces of advice for success (and he has many!) is to treat your job as though you own the company. If you did, how would you run it? How would you contribute? How would you help grow the enterprise? When you think about it, regardless if you work for someone else or for your own business, we are all self-employed. We are all responsible for our own productivity, engagement, and success. So why not look at your role as one that really matters to running the company? I do this with every client and with my own company. It’s a game-changer.


Take the time to teach your workforce, your team, your division, your company, about the company. About processes and goals and direction. About anything that will help them feel more connected and part of a grander plan than their small part. Which isn’t small at all.


Connect regularly with your employees. If you want to learn specific ways to do that, feel free to reach back to me directly: jody@jodybmiller.com.

TED’s secret to great public speaking | Chris Anderson

Jody’s Reflections:

I am a writer, published author, public speaker (TEDx – OakLawn in Dallas, conferences, companies) and a coach.

I write talks for people and show them how to get asked to speak at numerous types of events.

What I love about this TED advice from #ChrisAnderson is that he shares the essence of the whole TED Talk Experience.

Having gone through it myself, it’s all about that one great message you and only you can share.

It’s not how long you speak, it’s how clear and helpful your message is for others.

A TED Talk is actually not about you at all. You’re just the spark, the story, the vessel that helps others realize their dreams, inspirations and gives them the courage to speak out too.

So read and enjoy, and know that you too can give a talk like a TED talk. Anyone can if that is your dream and you’re willing to put in the work to make it the best story you’ve ever told.

Jody B. Miller is a public speaker, author, consultant and coach. In addition to focusing on Work Happiness for corporations, she hosts a top ranked podcast, contributes to numerous publications and, in addition to her work related to www.jodybmiller.com, she runs the following businesses

TED’s secret to great public speaking | Chris Anderson

Some people think that there’s a TED Talk formula: “Give a talk on a round, red rug.” “Share a childhood story.” “Divulge a personal secret.” “End with an inspiring call to action.

” No. That’s not how to think of a TED Talk. In fact, if you overuse those devices, you’re just going to come across as clichéd or emotionally manipulative. But there is one thing that all great TED Talks have in common, and I would like to share that thing with you, because over the past 12 years, I’ve had a ringside seat, listening to many hundreds of amazing TED speakers, like these.

I’ve helped them prepare their talks for prime time, and learned directly from them their secrets of what makes for a great talk. And even though these speakers and their topics all seem completely different, they actually do have one key common ingredient.

And it’s this: Your number one task as a speaker is to transfer into your listeners’ minds an extraordinary gift — a strange and beautiful object that we call an idea. Let me show you what I mean.

Here’s Haley. She is about to give a TED Talk and frankly, she’s terrified. (Video) Presenter: Haley Van Dyck! (Applause) Over the course of 18 minutes, 1,200 people, many of whom have never seen each other before, are finding that their brains are starting to sync with Haley’s brain and with each other.

They’re literally beginning to exhibit the same brain-wave patterns. And I don’t just mean they’re feeling the same emotions. There’s something even more startling happening. Let’s take a look inside Haley’s brain for a moment.

There are billions of interconnected neurons in an impossible tangle. But look here, right here — a few million of them are linked to each other in a way which represents a single idea. And incredibly, this exact pattern is being recreated in real-time inside the minds of everyone listening.

That’s right; in just a few minutes, a pattern involving millions of neurons is being teleported into 1,200 minds, just by people listening to a voice and watching a face. But wait — what is an idea anyway? Well, you can think of it as a pattern of information that helps you understand and navigate the world.

Ideas come in all shapes and sizes, from the complex and analytical to the simple and aesthetic. Here are just a few examples shared from the TED stage. Sir Ken Robinson — creativity is key to our kids’ future.

(Video) Sir Ken Robinson: My contention is that creativity now is as important in education as literacy, and we should treat it with the same status. Chris Anderson: Elora Hardy — building from bamboo is beautiful.

(Video) Elora Hardy: It is growing all around us, it’s strong, it’s elegant, it’s earthquake-resistant. CA: Chimamanda Adichie — people are more than a single identity. (Video) Chimamanda Adichie: The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete.

CA: Your mind is teeming with ideas, and not just randomly. They’re carefully linked together. Collectively they form an amazingly complex structure that is your personal worldview. It’s your brain’s operating system.

It’s how you navigate the world. And it is built up out of millions of individual ideas. So, for example, if one little component of your worldview is the idea that kittens are adorable, then when you see this, you’ll react like this.

But if another component of your worldview is the idea that leopards are dangerous, then when you see this, you’ll react a little bit differently. So, it’s pretty obvious why the ideas that make up your worldview are crucial.

You need them to be as reliable as possible — a guide, to the scary but wonderful real world out there. Now, different people’s worldviews can be dramatically different. For example, how does your worldview react when you see this image: (Video) Dalia Mogahed: What do you think when you look at me? “A woman of faith,” “an expert,” maybe even “a sister”? Or “oppressed,” “brainwashed,” “a terrorist”? CA: Whatever your answer, there are millions of people out there who would react very differently.

So that’s why ideas really matter. If communicated properly, they’re capable of changing, forever, how someone thinks about the world, and shaping their actions both now and well into the future.

Ideas are the most powerful force shaping human culture. So if you accept that your number one task as a speaker is to build an idea inside the minds of your audience, here are four guidelines for how you should go about that task: One, limit your talk to just one major idea.

Ideas are complex things; you need to slash back your content so that you can focus on the single idea you’re most passionate about, and give yourself a chance to explain that one thing properly. You have to give context, share examples, make it vivid.

So pick one idea, and make it the through-line running through your entire talk, so that everything you say links back to it in some way. Two, give your listeners a reason to care. Before you can start building things inside the minds of your audience, you have to get their permission to welcome you in.

And the main tool to achieve that? Curiosity. Stir your audience’s curiosity. Use intriguing, provocative questions to identify why something doesn’t make sense and needs explaining. If you can reveal a disconnection in someone’s worldview, they’ll feel the need to bridge that knowledge gap.

And once you’ve sparked that desire, it will be so much easier to start building your idea. Three, build your idea, piece by piece, out of concepts that your audience already understands. You use the power of language to weave together concepts that already exist in your listeners’ minds — but not your language, their language.

You start where they are. The speakers often forget that many of the terms and concepts they live with are completely unfamiliar to their audiences. Now, metaphors can play a crucial role in showing how the pieces fit together because they reveal the desired shape of the pattern, based on an idea that the listener already understands.

For example, when Jennifer Kahn wanted to explain the incredible new biotechnology called CRISPR, she said, “It’s as if, for the first time, you had a word processor to edit DNA. CRISPR allows you to cut and paste genetic information really easily.

” Now, a vivid explanation like that delivers a satisfying aha moment as it snaps into place in our minds. It’s important, therefore, to test your talk on trusted friends, and find out which parts they get confused by.

Four, here’s the final tip: Make your idea worth sharing. By that I mean, ask yourself the question: “Who does this idea benefit?” And I need you to be honest with the answer. If the idea only serves you or your organization, then, I’m sorry to say, it’s probably not worth sharing.

The audience will see right through you. But if you believe that the idea has the potential to brighten up someone else’s day or change someone else’s perspective for the better or inspire someone to do something differently, then you have the core ingredient to a truly great talk, one that can be a gift to them and to all of us.

Source : Youtube

How to Actually Work…When You’re Working from Home


Source : Youtube

Today, more and more people are getting the opportunity to work from home, which is great. But sometimes, like what’s happening right now with the coronavirus, certain circumstances may actually force people to work from home.

And while working from home does come with a lot of perks– you get to work in your pajamas. You have no commute. You get to hang out with your dog. I love you. It also does have some real challenges.

Because there’s less structure, you may actually work too much and focus too hard and get burned out. What’s the answer? The second is actually kind of the opposite. It might just be hard to focus and get as much done as you really want to do.

The key to overcoming both of these challenges is to set boundaries around your time and space. So when you’re working, you’re working. And when you’re not working, you’re not. Here’s how.

The first thing you’re going to want to do is give yourself a dedicated workspace away from distraction, meaning away from the TV, away from any music or the kitchen. One thing that’s really helpful is to be able to shut the door, so that you’re out of sight.

The second thing you want to do is make a schedule and stick to it. And it may sound silly, but you actually want to pretend that you’re not working from home. So get up as you normally would.

Pour yourself a cup of coffee. Sit down with your computer. It’s good practice to play out for yourself what’s acceptable and not acceptable to do during office hours. So for example, when you’re at work, you’re not going to play with your dog or listen to music.

So don’t do them while you’re at home actually focusing on your work. Finally, you’re going to want to quit at quitting time. Even if you’re in the middle of a project, put it down, because it will help you get jumpstarted the next day.

Do you want to get me sipping my coffee?

The third thing you’re going to want to do is set boundaries. The people or animals in your life are going to see you at home and think you’re taking the day off.

But that’s not the case. Buddy, I need you to listen to me. I know what this looks like, but it’s not what it seems. You’re going to want to explain to them, unapologetically, that you’re working from home.

We’ll go on a walk at lunch. We’ll go to the park. And the more they see you around the house doing your thing, the more they’re going to begin to understand that this is your time to focus.

So at the end of the day, you might feel like you just didn’t get enough done. This is pretty normal, and a lot of people feel this way when they work from home. That’s why the last thing that’s really important to do is celebrate your wins.

Maybe write them down and go over everything you did that day. These daily reminders are really good, because they can create a virtuous cycle. And the next time you work from home, you might feel a little bit more focused and just better about your day when it’s over.

Because it’s not easy.

Source : Youtube

Jody’s Reflections:

Working from home can be great fun. But you have to focus. Here are some things I’ve been doing for the past 6+ years. They work for me. I hope you find them helpful.

I set a timer for 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on what I am working on. I work until it ends.

I play soothing meditation music with no lyrics (less distraction, more focus).

I have motivating phrases that pop up on my computer.

Finish the Task at Hand

Do the Worst First

Do it Now

I reward myself when I finish a task.

  • A cup of coffee, a snack, a walk, look at my email, do a post, write a little in my next book

Rinse and Repeat until it’s time to put work away and engage in conversation and activities with others.


Leadership Skills During COVID-19: How to Keep Employees Connected

The one thing that is incredibly important is the power of human connection. Leadership right now is particularly important. You know people are working from home, people are feeling insecure, many of us have become caretakers, and so there’s a lot of stress, there’s a lot of pressure, which is why communication is so critical right now. In the absence of communication, people allow their own stories to form, or they start to form their own version of reality.

It’s important to be transparent. It’s important to be open. It’s also important to share what you know now, knowing that it may change.

Part of communication is also listening. That Friday afternoon kind of show-and-tell session, making sure that we continue to have this human connection, one to one, to small groups.

One to many is really critical: Employees, customers partners gravitate towards people who show up authentically and are true to themselves through all of this.

Marie Rosecrans, SVP and SMB Marketing expert at Salesforce, reveals there’s no option to opt out of communication and human connection in order to be an effective leader during COVID-19.

Source : Youtube

The happy secret to better work | Shawn Achor

Shawn Achor’s TEDx Talk.

When I was seven years old and my sister was just five years old, we were playing on top of a bunk bed. I was two years older than my sister at the time — I mean, I’m two years older than her now — but at the time it meant she had to do everything that I wanted to do, and I wanted to play war.

So we were up on top of our bunk beds. And on one side of the bunk bed, I had put out all of my G.I. Joe soldiers and weaponry. And on the other side were all my sister’s My Little Ponies ready for a cavalry charge.

There are differing accounts of what actually happened that afternoon, but since my sister is not here with us today, let me tell you the true story — (Laughter) which is my sister’s a little on the clumsy side.

Somehow, without any help or push from her older brother at all, Amy disappeared off of the top of the bunk bed and landed with this crash on the floor. I nervously peered over the side of the bed to see what had befallen my fallen sister and saw that she had landed painfully on her hands and knees on all fours on the ground.

I was nervous because my parents had charged me with making sure that my sister and I played as safely and as quietly as possible. And seeing as how I had accidentally broken Amy’s arm just one week before — (Laughter) (Laughter ends) heroically pushing her out of the way of an oncoming imaginary sniper bullet, (Laughter) for which I have yet to be thanked, I was trying as hard as I could — she didn’t even see it coming — I was trying hard to be on my best behavior.

And I saw my sister’s face, this wail of pain and suffering and surprise threatening to erupt from her mouth and wake my parents from the long winter’s nap for which they had settled. So I did the only thing my frantic seven year-old brain could think to do to avert this tragedy.

And if you have children, you’ve seen this hundreds of times. I said, “Amy, wait. Don’t cry. Did you see how you landed? No human lands on all fours like that. Amy, I think this means you’re a unicorn.

” (Laughter) Now, that was cheating, because there was nothing she would want more than not to be Amy the hurt five year-old little sister, but Amy the special unicorn. Of course, this option was open to her brain at no point in the past.

And you could see how my poor, manipulated sister faced conflict, as her little brain attempted to devote resources to feeling the pain and suffering and surprise she just experienced, or contemplating her new-found identity as a unicorn.

And the latter won. Instead of crying or ceasing our play, instead of waking my parents, with all the negative consequences for me, a smile spread across her face and she scrambled back up onto the bunk bed with all the grace of a baby unicorn — (Laughter) with one broken leg.

What we stumbled across at this tender age of just five and seven — we had no idea at the time — was was going be at the vanguard of a scientific revolution occurring two decades later in the way that we look at the human brain.

We had stumbled across something called positive psychology, which is the reason I’m here today and the reason that I wake up every morning. When I started talking about this research outside of academia, with companies and schools, the first thing they said to never do is to start with a graph.

The first thing I want to do is start with a graph. This graph looks boring, but it is the reason I get excited and wake up every morning. And this graph doesn’t even mean anything; it’s fake data.

What we found is — (Laughter) If I got this data studying you, I would be thrilled, because there’s a trend there, and that means that I can get published, which is all that really matters. There is one weird red dot above the curve, there’s one weirdo in the room — I know who you are, I saw you earlier — that’s no problem.

That’s no problem, as most of you know, because I can just delete that dot. I can delete that dot because that’s clearly a measurement error. And we know that’s a measurement error because it’s messing up my data.

(Laughter) So one of the first things we teach people in economics, statistics, business and psychology courses is how, in a statistically valid way, do we eliminate the weirdos. How do we eliminate the outliers so we can find the line of best fit? Which is fantastic if I’m trying to find out how many Advil the average person should be taking — two.

But if I’m interested in your potential, or for happiness or productivity or energy or creativity, we’re creating the cult of the average with science. If I asked a question like, “How fast can a child learn how to read in a classroom?” scientists change the answer to “How fast does the average child learn how to read in that classroom?” and we tailor the class towards the average.

If you fall below the average, then psychologists get thrilled, because that means you’re depressed or have a disorder, or hopefully both. We’re hoping for both because our business model is, if you come into a therapy session with one problem, we want to make sure you leave knowing you have ten, so you keep coming back.

We’ll go back into your childhood if necessary, but eventually we want to make you normal again. But normal is merely average. And positive psychology posits that if we study what is merely average, we will remain merely average.

Then instead of deleting those positive outliers, what I intentionally do is come into a population like this one and say, why? Why are some of you high above the curve in terms of intellectual, athletic, musical ability, creativity, energy levels, resiliency in the face of challenge, sense of humor? Whatever it is, instead of deleting you, what I want to do is study you.

Because maybe we can glean information, not just how to move people up to the average, but move the entire average up in our companies and schools worldwide. The reason this graph is important to me is, on the news, the majority of the information is not positive.

in fact it’s negative. Most of it’s about murder, corruption, diseases, natural disasters. And very quickly, my brain starts to think that’s the accurate ratio of negative to positive in the world.

This creates “the medical school syndrome.” During the first year of medical training, as you read through a list of all the symptoms and diseases, suddenly you realize you have all of them.

(Laughter) I have a brother in-law named Bobo, which is a whole other story. Bobo married Amy the unicorn. Bobo called me on the phone — (Laughter) from Yale Medical School, and Bobo said, “Shawn, I have leprosy.

” (Laughter) Which, even at Yale, is extraordinarily rare. But I had no idea how to console poor Bobo because he had just gotten over an entire week of menopause. (Laughter) We’re finding it’s not necessarily the reality that shapes us, but the lens through which your brain views the world that shapes your reality.

And if we can change the lens, not only can we change your happiness, we can change every single educational and business outcome at the same time. I applied to Harvard on a dare. I didn’t expect to get in, and my family had no money for college.

When I got a military scholarship two weeks later, they let me go. Something that wasn’t even a possibility became a reality. I assumed everyone there would see it as a privilege as well, that they’d be excited to be there.

Even in a classroom full of people smarter than you, I felt you’d be happy just to be in that classroom. But what I found is, while some people experience that, when I graduated after my four years and then spent the next eight years living in the dorms with the students — Harvard asked me to; I wasn’t that guy.

(Laughter) I was an officer to counsel students through the difficult four years. And in my research and my teaching, I found that these students, no matter how happy they were with their original success of getting into the school, two weeks later their brains were focused, not on the privilege of being there, nor on their philosophy or physics, but on the competition, the workload, the hassles, stresses, complaints.

When I first went in there, I walked into the freshmen dining hall, which is where my friends from Waco, Texas, which is where I grew up — I know some of you know this. When they’d visit, they’d look around, and say, “This dining hall looks like something out of Hogwart’s.

” It does, because that was Hogwart’s and that’s Harvard. And when they see this, they say, “Why do you waste your time studying happiness at Harvard? What does a Harvard student possibly have to be unhappy about?” Embedded within that question is the key to understanding the science of happiness.

Because what that question assumes is that our external world is predictive of our happiness levels, when in reality, if I know everything about your external world, I can only predict 10% of your long-term happiness.

90 percent of your long-term happiness is predicted not by the external world, but by the way your brain processes the world. And if we change it, if we change our formula for happiness and success, we can change the way that we can then affect reality.

What we found is that only 25% of job successes are predicted by IQ, 75 percent of job successes are predicted by your optimism levels, your social support and your ability to see stress as a challenge instead of as a threat.

I talked to a New England boarding school, probably the most prestigious one, and they said, “We already know that. So every year, instead of just teaching our students, we have a wellness week. And we’re so excited.

Monday night we have the world’s leading expert will speak about adolescent depression. Tuesday night it’s school violence and bullying. Wednesday night is eating disorders. Thursday night is illicit drug use.

And Friday night we’re trying to decide between risky sex or happiness.” (Laughter) I said, “That’s most people’s Friday nights.” (Laughter) (Applause) Which I’m glad you liked, but they did not like that at all.

Silence on the phone. And into the silence, I said, “I’d be happy to speak at your school, but that’s not a wellness week, that’s a sickness week. You’ve outlined all the negative things that can happen, but not talked about the positive.

” The absence of disease is not health. Here’s how we get to health: We need to reverse the formula for happiness and success. In the last three years, I’ve traveled to 45 countries, working with schools and companies in the midst of an economic downturn.

And I found that most companies and schools follow a formula for success, which is this: If I work harder, I’ll be more successful. And if I’m more successful, then I’ll be happier. That undergirds most of our parenting and managing styles, the way that we motivate our behavior.

And the problem is it’s scientifically broken and backwards for two reasons. Every time your brain has a success, you just changed the goalpost of what success looked like. You got good grades, now you have to get better grades, you got into a good school and after you get into a better one, you got a good job, now you have to get a better job, you hit your sales target, we’re going to change it.

And if happiness is on the opposite side of success, your brain never gets there. We’ve pushed happiness over the cognitive horizon, as a society. And that’s because we think we have to be successful, then we’ll be happier.

But our brains work in the opposite order. If you can raise somebody’s level of positivity in the present, then their brain experiences what we now call a happiness advantage, which is your brain at positive performs significantly better than at negative, neutral or stressed.

Your intelligence rises, your creativity rises, your energy levels rise. In fact, we’ve found that every single business outcome improves. Your brain at positive is 31% more productive than your brain at negative, neutral or stressed.

You’re 37% better at sales. Doctors are 19 percent faster, more accurate at coming up with the correct diagnosis when positive instead of negative, neutral or stressed. Which means we can reverse the formula.

If we can find a way of becoming positive in the present, then our brains work even more successfully as we’re able to work harder, faster and more intelligently. We need to be able to reverse this formula so we can start to see what our brains are actually capable of.

Because dopamine, which floods into your system when you’re positive, has two functions. Not only does it make you happier, it turns on all of the learning centers in your brain allowing you to adapt to the world in a different way.

We’ve found there are ways that you can train your brain to be able to become more positive. In just a two-minute span of time done for 21 days in a row, we can actually rewire your brain, allowing your brain to actually work more optimistically and more successfully.

We’ve done these things in research now in every company that I’ve worked with, getting them to write down three new things that they’re grateful for for 21 days in a row, three new things each day.

And at the end of that, their brain starts to retain a pattern of scanning the world not for the negative, but for the positive first. Journaling about one positive experience you’ve had over the past 24 hours allows your brain to relive it.

Exercise teaches your brain that your behavior matters. We find that meditation allows your brain to get over the cultural ADHD that we’ve been creating by trying to do multiple tasks at once and allows our brains to focus on the task at hand.

And finally, random acts of kindness are conscious acts of kindness. We get people, when they open up their inbox, to write one positive email praising or thanking somebody in their support network. And by doing these activities and by training your brain just like we train our bodies, what we’ve found is we can reverse the formula for happiness and success, and in doing so, not only create ripples of positivity but a real revolution.

Thank you very much.

Source : Youtube