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Did you know?

by Diego Nascimento

This week we celebrate Teacher’s Day! I recall the great masters who have been a part of my academic life and were examples of persistenceand honesty. The professional life of one of these was immortalized through several films, one of them played by Sidney Poitier in the filmTo Sir, With Love in 1967. Now think with me, how many people directly or indirectly are involved in your daily life as true teachers? A mother teaches about love through her speech and her attitudes; a father provides the first football lessons to his son; the supervisorpatiently guides the closing of the cash register; the manager assists the coworker in editing an e-mail; the leader wisely ministers words of encouragement … and so the list goes on and on.  For every moment and every situation there is a teacher. From the perspective of the workplace, think about this:  Independent of the position you hold, appreciate the chance to teach someone to do their best. If you prefer to act quietly, fine, but be an example! Your attitudes speak loudly! Whether you have months or years in your professional career, I’m sure you can remember that person who was instrumental in your learning process, right? Even if you do not have the opportunity to thank them, here’s a tip:  Do what they did! Teach, always within the principles of humility and respect.

Straight to the Point

by Diego Nascimento

Last week I spent six hours waiting for a flight; the delay was due to bad weather in Sao Paulo’s capital, where the flight originated. I went to the bookstore and bought one of those interesting crossword puzzle books.  While I was doing these exercises that require a good deal of general knowledge, I decided to look at the clock, and I was shocked to see how much time had passed. From this perspective, I want to invite you to think with me:  How many professionals concentrate efforts in questioning (from many different angles) situations that are already resolved or even unimportant? They prefer to act horizontally, vertically or diagonally (like a crossword), creating unnecessary tension when what they really need to focus on is escaping through their fingers: time and results. I suggest that we leave the already turned pages to the soap operas to go over and over.  The Holy Bible has an interesting verse that says: “The old things have passed way; Behold, I am making all things new.”  Likewise a quote attributed to the famous Peter Drucker says, “Thesystematic neglect of the former is the only way to force the new.” And you? Have youconcentrated your efforts towards the future? Then stop going around in circles:  Dream, plan, invest and go straight to the point. The market, your colleagues and your company climate will thank you!

Always Thankful

by Diego Nascimento

I remember that during my teenage years an interesting commercial was aired on all channels; in the advertisement, several people appeared in daily situations. The emphasis of the campaign was to raise awareness for the use of the famous “magic words” traditionally described as thank you, excuse me, sorry and please. Now think with me: for an action like this to get on TV, surely the etiquette passed through many people.  Did you ever want to be a part of this team? A clear example involves my work group. Daily, at the end of the workday, I make a point of thanking and wishing a good night to everyone. Even though professional activities are part of the job, I believe this is the sum of our efforts. And you? Do you thank your significant other?  Thankfulness is not only part of the corporate environment. It is present in the process of buying a little bread for breakfast, in the handshake of a client or even in the simplest show of support in your family. In one of his articles, the entrepreneur Tom Vander Ark said that: “A single word of thanks helps others to make a difference”.  And you? Have you already thanked someone today? Be a professional with etiquette.  The workplace needs this!

Take Risks, But With Your Feet on the Ground

by Diego Nascimento

I’ve seen small projects become huge in the marketplace; I’ve heard about daring to dream that wouldn’t work out on paper or even reports of professionals who out of fear or inconvenience turned down promising proposals. Every tree begins with a seed. I admire those who take risks when it comes to their careers. They face geographical and emotional limits in search of new challenges. It pays to have that kind of attitude where humility and common sense are the basis for decision making. Since childhood I have seen people say, “Do this or do that, but do it with your feet on the ground.” That is, calculate potential opportunities and failures. How will you react if it works? And if it does not work? Dream on, take risks, but before you do, make a plan. The Bible itself says that the heart of man can make his plans, but the answer comes from God. Have you received a promotion? Be thankful and take advantage of this chance. Want to change your job? Start the search but be ready for potential challenges. Want to make history? Think, write, ask for help, and roll up your sleeves. Time does not wait for anyone! Throw convenience out the window.

The Internet at Work: Friend or Foe?

by Diego Nascimento

In my last article I talked about the conscious use of the phone, remember? This week I will continue sowing tips for good conduct in the organizational environment, especially for professionals who spend their days in front of a computer to perform their activities. E-mail, digital forms, systems, backups … words hitherto little practiced today are common in corporate vocabulary. Regardless of all these ideas, I just want to reflect on your time on websites or blogs during your work hours. Was your service performed within a satisfactory time frame or did a chat on the web prevent it from happening? The Internet is a creative communication channel, provided it is used responsibly and intelligently. Stay calm:  You know that I am totally in favor of finding information and reading, especially that which can advance with your career and your well-being. There are several web pages with serious content worthy of attention. Perhaps your company has an access policy that would reconcile your professional activities with checking personal e-mails, reading news, etc… If not, talk to your boss and suggest the creation of a rule of conduct that enables this balance and collaborate with the entire team. Dialogue is the first step towards big decisions. Make the Internet an ally and not a stumbling block in your career!

Phonecalls at Work: Be Aware

by Diego Nascimento

Perhaps you know people who go beyond the limits of common-sense and use the company phone to relay some family message or solve personal problems.  Stay calm:  I am not condemning you for making personal calls at the office. It often becomes necessary to use this tool of communication created by Alexander Graham Bell. What I mean is that there are people who talk so much it almost turns into a book that takes days to communicate over the phone.  In these cases it is important to remember that while we are on the phone talking with someone, other people could be trying to call you to make you aware of important company business or more importantly, to find out how they can buy a product or hire a service. In the company environment, the phone is a work tool. Perhaps you are thinking: “But I have family and need have an open line in case of emergency”. Yes, I realize that.  What I want to reinforce is that the businessphone  should not be used to share information about the latest episode of the soap opera last night or concerning a neighbor’s fight with his wife or to give out cake recipes. In different locations I have witnessed awkward situations, where a customer needed to wait for the chat on the telephone to end before receiving assistance. I will conclude this text with an excellent recommendation written thousands of years ago, which crosses the centuries without losing its relevancy: “With wisdom a house is built, and by understanding a house is established.” Proverbs 24:3. Reflect on your attitudes and invest in your career.

Time to Say Goodbye

by Diego Nascimento

Saying goodbye is not an easy task. For years we  have talked and exchanged ideas. A book consists of chapters and so does life. Beginning, middle and end. When you had to make a decision I was there, ready to help. Now I understand that many things are temporary, me included. Despite the memories, I was not expecting to be kicked out of your everyday life. I know that in the beginning it was not easy, but what can we do? Goodbye!

Signed,  Self-indulgence.

Have you wiped away the tears (LOL)?  This brief farewell is part of everyday life for many professionals around the world. After a smart choice, self-indulgence was replaced by initiative. What about you? Do you know someone who needs to do the same thing? Who gives up at the first challenge and just lets the “river run its course”? Whether in the country or city centers, small, positive actions make a difference. Regardless of your position, salary or age, get on board with this idea:  Be proactive already!

Over Your Glasses, Never!

by Diego Nascimento

If you use glasses daily (especially for reading), know that this accessory influences your facial expressions, and you should be careful.  Do you think I’m exaggerating? Maybe, maybe not.  Here’s what I mean:  To show affection and compassion is easy for some people; for others, this seemingly simple act requires “training.” What I have observed over the years is that the traditional “looking over the top of glasses” can be intimidating to other party. This occurs unintentionally or intentionally, includingprofessionals from various positions and even in family relationships. If your intention is to maintain a healthy relationship in your social circle, understand that certain words, attitudes and reactions offer two types of outcomes:success or failure. Amid all this, our good old friend glasses may arise as a villain in this story, which is confirmed by the researchers and writers Alan and Barbara Pease in Unraveling the Secrets of Body Language: “The act of looking over your glasses is a potentially costly mistake, because it can bring the listener to respond with negative attitudes and arms folded, legs crossed and a defiant attitude.”

Want to start a good dialogue? There are several basic rules; one of them is: “Over your glasses, never!”

Invest in your career.  Make communication a daily companion!

Do What I Say, Not What I Do

by Diego Nascimento

Have you heard about sincerity? This word is defined in the Houaiss dictionary as something “that is said or done in an honest manner, free of concealment”. In the workplace it is possible to find people who share ideas or offer instructions to groups or individuals, but, in reality, they are far from practicing the concepts or the rules they have defended (in a positive light).  They are just words and speeches blowing in the wind. The future professional lives out the good character and the example of life outside of the walls of the office and needs to be visible in social relationships, families, etc. .. Unfortunately, there are people who justify their stumbles through the phrase Do what I say, not what I do. This can be a dangerous decision. If your conduct at work combines what is good in values and principles, it will be an example. A verse accredited to the administrator and researcher Peter Druker says, “Don’t just get ready for tomorrow. Seek to discard what no longer has meaning, which is not productive, which does not contribute to your goals.” Maybe it’s time to rethink your attitudes. Invest in your career!

Watch Your Gestures

by Diego Nascimento

For some time now I have been awakened to the study of a subject rarely discussed:  body language. Did you know that a frown when greeting a customer, a touch of the eyebrows or chin can implicitly convey a message of agreement or disagreement? As it is a subject usually practiced by people in public, with regular appearances in speeches, lectures, etc… body language is a daily companion, and it is also a part of our family and social relationships. Want an example? In his book Unlocking the Secrets of Body Language, Allan and Barbara Pease explain that: “… crossing your arms in front of your body is always seen as negative, and the message is both in the mind of the one watching as in the one who sends it. Even if you cross your arms because, let’s say, you have back pain, the observer will unconsciously perceive this as a person closed to his ideas.” There are professionals who specialize in this type of body language reading, however, it requires training, time and dedication. Okay, maybe you’re thinking that mastering this stuff is not a basic requirement for your position, but if you have the opportunity, it is worth at least pursuing some tips in body positions that can positively or negatively influence your daily life. Invest in your career! Read, research, and practice tips that can add to your career in the workplace in a healthy way.