Employees don’t need titles, we need clear-cut duties, responsibilities and boundaries

you can create fancy titles all you want but it will just lead to stress and unproductive time spent thinking “wtf does this title mean?”
this is a people WASTE in terms of LEAN, see (unclear reponsibilities)
in contrast if we give people answers to the ff: we will be more productive instead of letting the person discover all of these by chance, like maybe within a few years.

  • what is my high-level goal (unless you are the CEO, your superior should set this with you) ?
  • who do i report to?
  • what group do i belong?
  • what tools/resources are at my disposal ?
  • who reports to me ?
  • up to what part of the system is under my control (or who else shares control over portions of it) ?

People like working for things they are passionate about, things where they know how they could be of help.
We need more of those instead of the “anti-stress” features such as a fancy pantry or free snacks.
we can elimininate that stress before it even begins.

Reading In between employments

Whenever i move from one employer to another, I make sure to take a few weeks off to read.
So I will have new knowledge than i can potentially be a better person at the new job.

This gives me chance to detox (from the old Job) and catch up on all the books I’ve bought but haven’t read yet.
This allows me to learn new things that i might be able to use to improve the way I work.

Don’t just buy books, buy the time to read them too.

This might be an expensive move, few weeks of unemployment.


But this means that to be able to do this, you should’ve already built healthy personal finance habits.
This basically means you should have an Emergency Fund. An Emergency fund is about 3-6 months worth of your living expenses.
Living expenses, not monthly salary.

There are many good reasons to have this which includes the ability to take weeks of rest when you resign from a job.
This also allows you to not be scared of losing your job, which means you won’t be afraid to stand up for things you know are right.

No more summer vacations

Summer vacations end the moment we leave college.
its always nice to have one every few years.
I’m not recommending you have one every year though.
But in case you do get that chance, take that time to unwind and prepare properly for a new career ahead.
🙂

Decision-Making is what pays

if you want to improve your impact at work and your salary, strive to be a decision maker.

If you are a tech-guy, and a good one at that, it means you get to decide within the team what tools to use and how to implement them.
If you are not aware of it, it is your ability to pick a road and decide is what you are being paid for, not your ability to use a tool or a language.

If you want to explore the business, managerial side (coming from a programming background) then you must be able to provide decisions
relating to “How you can improve the business using programming/automation”.

Look at CEOs and other C officials, they don’t do grunt work, they are there to think and decide about major things.
Those who get promoted, are chosen because their superiors can trust them to make smaller decisions for them.

Everyone want’s a higher salary, we should work to get there and be genuinely valuable.

How do I Improve my decision-making?

First, master your craft, you can’t make sound decisions if you are just guessing and don’t know your work by heart.

Second, learn how to gather relevant metrics for your work and your goals so you can make data-driven decisions instead of
just drafting conclusions out of thin air or gut feeling.

If I’m already a decision-maker what do I do next?

chances are you have subordinates at this point, teach them the science you use to make decisions.
So they can grow and learn how to make small decisions for you.
So you can move on and think about higher level problems and hopefully get to be making decisions on the higher levels of the organization.
By doing this, you don’t only lift yourself up but also your subordinates.

Books are not scary

I read personal development books, mostly to learn, but what keeps me going is that i find it fun.

Books are filled with real-life stories and anecdotes

personal development books are not all numbers, figures and data, they are not like your elementary or college textbooks!

authors often take time to interview and gather stories of other people to support the topic they are writing about, reading stories is pretty much like how you read about scifi or fiction novels, only that this is real life.

What’s the deal breaker here is to find good story tellers, I often buy and stick with authors who are good story tellers.
those books (and their amazing story tellers) are listed here https://markanthonyrosario.com/how-to-be-more-efficient-at-work/2020/03/27/books-that-inspired-my-way-of-working/that

Personal development books often have 1-10 concepts only!

believe it or not, there are not lots of concepts that you need to ingest for each book, good authors try to lessen cognitive load (quality over quantity).
many formats go iike 2-10 topics/concepts repeated over and over, via different stories and anecdotes reaching up to, oftentimes, 300 pages.

You do not need to finish a book in one day!

too many people pressure themselves into doing this, and if not possible they just wont read at all.

I actually don’t recommend this, I often break down a 300 page book into 10-12 pages per day (every morning), that’s 25-30 days!

this habit gives me lots of time to think about what i read per day and make them really stick, this is like watching your favorite netflix series where after a few seasons you get absorbed too much in that show’s universe vs bingwatching an 8 part series overnight.

My personal habit is to set a regular routine

whenever possible, when i wake up in the morning and get myself done, i stop by at a coffee shop, to read.
there’s just that ambiance that says “you should be productive here”, maybe because there are other people working, reading, studying as well!

then after 30-60mins of reading i go back home or go to work, (by this time im already energized with new ideas that i can reflect on all day)
yes you read that right.. oftentimes it takes me 30-60mins to get thru 10-12 pages.. lol.. lots of re-reading, internalizations, recalling past events where this new found information could’ve been useful, thinking of potential scenarios where i can apply them, etc.. then distractions,,facebook,etc….

Just read that first page and before you know it, your book is done and you’ve adopted a positive habit.

How to skip negativity and be the source of positivity in the workplace

the workplace is filled with nice and kind people, if you can’t find one, be one.

be the help we wish we had, be the boss you wish you had.

always try to leave things in better state than when you’ve found them [boyscout rule]

if you find yourself in a situation where you are neither learning, nor contributing, use your own two feet to go somewhere else. [law of two feet]

always try to make it easy for people to do the right things.

No one wakes up everyday and say “today i wanna do my best to annoy my co-workers”, always remember that!

lead by example.

smile.

Things that new employees don’t seem to know about work

Companies are run by people (not machines), everything can be negotiated, dont get blocked by what you see from Job Ads and Bulletins.

Companies don’t always know what they are doing, many just pretend that they do, question the status quo, ask why 5 times, find the first principles. find out why people do things.

Salary/Compensation is never fail and equal, there’s no sense comparing your’s with your co-worker, WE GET WHAT WE ASK FOR. state your desires/skills during interviews (be sure to have the right skills for your job before you demand tho)

Blame is not for failure, it is failing to help others or ask for help, asking for help is something people are too embarassed about. there is nothing embarassing about wanting to improve yourself or your work.

An Advice for Fresh Graduates before you take that First Job, Have an Exit Plan

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Have an Exit Plan

Don’t spend years on that same job if they don’t give you career growth in terms of skill and salary.
Let’s not be hypocrites, we all work so that we could get a life, don’t give your life to work.
Having friends and relationships in the workplace is nice, but that aint the goal, you should not stay in a dead end job just for your friends.
True friends are friends no matter where you are.

Before you take that first job, set a goal, “I want to learn as much as N so that I can perform role Y and be a sought-after subject matter expert on it, and I’d like to earn as much as $$$$$ in two years”

This is a S.M.A.R.T. Goal (from wikipedia)

  • Specific – target a specific area for improvement.
  • Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress.
  • Assignable – specify who will do it. (you)
  • Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved, given available resources.
  • Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.

Having a specific plan removes the emotional aspects that make it hard to leave the first job, combating the common fear “I might not get a new job after this”. If you focus on your goals of learning, you will definitely increase your chances of landing a better job.

Why the first job is very important

your first boss will have a lot of impact you your career,
a good one can help you build a roadmap, shows you the way and helps you gain confidence towards reaching your goals.
a bad one will tell you “you are stuck here forever” (and we dont want that)

Don’t just get a job for the sake of having one.
Choose one that fits your goals, if your goal is to learn then find companies/bosses that look for the same.

Hiring is a two way street, not only the company should like you, you should also like the company.
And by like i don’t mean just being nice, I mean your goals should match the company’s.
How would you get there? just be honest, tell them what you want to learn and grow into.
tell them were your weak points are. The good companies who support growth and development will take you in, just be honest.

Focus on your goal

don’t get stuck, don’t get blocked, allowing yourself to be blocked from your personal goals by your current job is a surefire to kill motivation and evolve to be that reactive-always-complaining employee. People fight over petty things when they don’t have better things to worry about such as a strong goal.
Don’t be one of those cancerous people in the workplace, ignore pessimists, improve your skills, focus on your goal and Move on when absolutely necessary.

When to quit strategically?
i suggest you read this

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“The Dip” by Seth Godin will teach you when to stick and when to quit.

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 any time you’re in a meeting where you’re not contributing nor adding value–you are encouraged to use your two feet and find a place where you can.

 

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https://opensource.com/business/10/8/darwin-meets-dilbert-applying-law-two-feet-your-next-meeting

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How do I motivate my team?

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Step1: find the right people

get Growth-type people

Step 2: understand the factors behind motivation

From Dan Pink’s very famous book “Drive”



Autonomy – Creative Freedom
Mastery – Desire for Self Improvement
Purpose – the cause commit to as to why we do things.

From Dan Pink himself, in one of the most popular Ted Talks of all time.

https://www.ted.com/talks/dan_pink_the_puzzle_of_motivation?language=en
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also you need to keep people within the “Flow zone” to avoid anxiety and boredom

https://medium.com/swlh/flow-a-productive-antidote-to-anxiety-and-boredom-1b015be966b

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Where are the Motivated people I want for my team?

these sought after motivated people are Growth-type people.


Not everyone is at this level, those who do not even desire to leave the Existence stage are not worth your time, don’t stress over trying to teach them.

people can only get to this stage if the lower level stages are met, when existence needs is satisfied by a good income (or when coming from a well-off family and when relationship needs are met by families, friends,partner)

Alderfer’s ERG Theory

from wikipedia

Alderfer further developed Maslow’s hierarchy of needs by categorizing the hierarchy into his ERG theory (Existence, Relatedness and Growth).

The existence group is concerned with providing the basic material existence requirements of humans. They include the items that Maslow considered to be physiological and safety needs.
Alderfer categorized the lower order needs (Physiological and Safety) into the Existence category.

The relatedness group, the desire people have for maintaining important interpersonal relationships. These social and status desires require interaction with others if they are to be satisfied, and they align with Maslow’s social need and the external component of Maslow’s esteem classification.
He fit Maslow’s interpersonal love and esteem needs into the Relatedness category.

The growth group, an intrinsic desire for personal development. These include the intrinsic component from Maslow’s esteem category and the characteristics included under self-actualization. The Growth category contained the self-actualization and self-esteem needs. Alderfer also proposed a regression theory to go along with the ERG theory.

He said that when needs in a higher category are not met then individuals redouble the efforts invested in a lower category need. For example if self-actualization or self-esteem is not met then individuals will invest more effort in the relatedness category in the hopes of achieving the higher need.[1]

Why we need a Systematic Approach to Developing our workforce

In the past the man has been first; in the future the system must be first. This in no sense, however, implies that great men are not needed. On the contrary, the first object of any good system must be that of developing first-class men; and under systematic management the best man rises to the top more certainly and more rapidly than ever before.

Frederick taylor (father of scientific management) 1911

The Quality of Your Product is Only as Good as the Tools You Use

Your software is only as good as the current knowledge of the team who created them

want a better product? desire a better team.

how do you do that?

Train them, give them resources

How do you ensure that resources are not wasted?

It starts with Hiring!, find the right people, the ones who crave for learning and growth, those who get out of their way to find answers and solutions.

It all starts with hiring and looking for people who believes in the same things as you do.

Now ask yourself, what do you believe in?

do you believe that things just fall into place? do you believe in luck? (would you leave your organization’s success to luck?) or do you believe in building a team of Growth-type and no-bullshit honest people so that your team with organically grow as time goes by?