How To Get Big Rewards?

Most sane people are afraid of problems and tend to avoid them. From evolutionary perspective that is something that helped us to survive. I don’t go further into examples or explaining the reasons why, I’m sure you can do the math by yourself as you have come to read this blog.

But what people don’t often realize is that where there is a problem – there is money waiting to be made.

The bigger problem solved – The bigger reward obtained

In short: if your job is to solve small problems you likely get paid little:

Cashier vs. CEO
Nurse vs. brain surgeon
“I only work here” vs. “I will do what it takes to make this company profitable”

If you manage to solve complex and big problems with good track record, you most likely are rewarded well. It is not a coincidence that intelligence (which often equals to the ability to solve problems) correlates with a good income and financial well being.

Easy to replace = lousy rewards

I urge you to make a status check: would you love to solve bigger problems and get a better reward? Are you willing to rise above mundane? Do you have the brainpower to go to markets where majority of people are afraid to enter and prosper: like sales, marketing, strategic planning, leadership?

If you come up with “yes” – that is your first problem to solve!

  • What kinds of problems you want to solve,
  • who has these problems,
  • and how to connect and convince these people that you are the right person to do that?

There is always a “but”

Inspiration and determination will take you far, but it is not all it takes. Nor is the general intelligence alone a guarantee to prevail. In order to be exceptional you also need tools, experiences, and networks:

  • The tools you can study from blogs like EBL, professional books, courses, schools, mentors and educational videos for example.
  • The experiences and merits you gain only by trying hard, and by trial and error – just go and do stuff you feel passionate about. Passion, mission and vision give you extra strength. Money alone is almost never the best motivator, although it sure makes life easier and more enjoyable.
  • Networks help you reach the people and opportunities that are in need of a problem solver. Get out of your comfort zone and meet people: both online and offline. Face your fear of rejection and never surrender to it. First it hurts like hell, but with time you get used to it.

Think about it: Are you using all of your potential or would you like to win more? If winning is your choice, do what it takes to be Ever Better!

Lets recap and go a bit deeper – in order to solve big problems and get big rewards you must find out:

  1. Who you wanna be
  2. What kinds of problems you want to solve and how you plan to do it
  3. Who has these problems
  4. and how to connect and convince these people that you are the right person to do that?

Step 1. is your vision and mission
Step 2. is your strategy
Step 3. is your target audience
Step 4. is your marketing and sales tactic

You have just created your personal business plan, so now go and execute!

Head there; where problems cause despair!

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Inspirational Image: Get Massive Results!

I recently started Grant Cardone’s great book “The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure“. The book is very testosterone filled motivational self-empowerment sales book that is not meant for those who do not aim to dominate the market they operate at.

After listening 80% of it I have encountered several empowering quotes like:

“Massive results require massive actions.”

“Duplicate the actions and mindsets of successful people and you will be successful!”

Or

At this point (80% completed) I dare to recommend “The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure” for those who fear not to play hard and to set the bar high. But if you feel that being an average is enough for you, I think it is better to focus on reading something else. Do that what makes you happy!

Grant Cardone is rated one of the top most influential 10 CEOs in the world , author of 5 business books, international keynote speaker, and and an active CEO of five privately held companies that do 100m in sales.

 

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Change is inevitable – Growth is optional

The title is a quote from Mr. John C. Maxwell and holds wisdom so great that it is next to impossible to say anything even remotely as wise as that.

But instead of trying to outsmart it, I rather try to explain my view about why changing is often so hard. In short: the main reason boils down to one of our prime drivers in life – the need to save energy.

The change that consumes more energy than the cozy status quo is always more or less painful. Only when there is some level of certainty that the change will pay off (as fast as possible), people are willing to invest time and energy to the process of change. But if the payoff is too far in the future, too abstract, vague, or just requires too much energy, it is quite likely that nothing will happen. This is the reason why it is crucial for the leader/doctor/parent/spouse/friend/… to explain the personal benefits of the change as concrete as possible. In case the journey to the better will be long and hard, it is wise to break down the process to smaller steps which are explained and done one by one.

But how to do the change?

I have written an article earlier this year about doing the change. You can find it here: http://jukkaniittymaa.com/2017/03/01/credit-how-to-make-the-change/

And for those who have already read the article, here is the “C.R.E.D.I.T.” process in short:

 

To utilize C.R.E.D.I.T. make sure you use roadmaps. To make your own roadmap please check my earlier post at http://jukkaniittymaa.com/2017/03/12/how-to-build-a-roadmap-for-success/

Short list advice’s:

  1. Plan your message is advance before announcing it publicly.
  2. Also if possible, rehearse it few times – at least if the stakes are high and you really need to make the change happen.
  3. If communicating the message via email or some other written format, try to get someone trustworthy to read and comment it.
  4. Is there a possibility that people don’t get the benefits, or the reasons to change?
  5. Am I being concrete enough, and sure that all know why the change is needed, how it is done and what is expected during and after the process.

My Personal Change On April 2017

For me the change has been quite easy through my life. Speaking of which, I am now at the brink of change. After working for over 2.5 years in the current company I’ve signed a new contract and will be soon starting as an account director in a very cool and creative marketing agency. This will be a new chapter in my career and I am super excited about it. I hope to be able to help new colleagues and clients to thrive even better. Often change is the thing that can boost personal growth, and that is something I am looking forward very much with this step. Wish me luck!

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The 5 Golden Rules Of Success

“If you don’t see yourself as a winner, then you cannot perform as a winner.” Zig Ziglar

  1. The first rule of success is to loose the victim mentality. Learn from the history, but don’t let it define you. Times change, so can you – if you just decide and want to do so. The future belongs to those who embrace the change.

    “Everyone has a plan ’till they get punched in the mouth.” Mike Tyson

  2. The second rule of success is to decide to win. You will be punched in the face and you will be knocked out for a while. You also need to come up with new strategies, find new team-mates and coaches, but if – and as long as – you keep practicing and playing, you will be able to be the winner of your league. After the win, you are ready for the next tier – as there is always more room to grow.

    “You have to think anyway, so why not think big?” Donald Trump

  3. The third rule of success is to think big. Small ideas create small results, big ideas create big results. Do not settle for mediocrity.

    “Pick battles big enough to matter, small enough to win.” Jonathan Kozol

  4. The fourth rule of success is to have the wisdom to choose your battles. Even while thinking big, smart people focus their efforts on the battles they see the most rewarding. In Finland we have a saying “ei kannata ampua kärpästä haulikolla” which means “there is no point in shooting a fly with a shotgun” I.e. some problems are too small to be dealt with big guns. Do not waste your time in stuff that is not important.

    “There’s a natural law of karma that vindictive people, who go out of their way to hurt others, will end up broke and alone.” Sylvester Stallone

  5. The fifth rule of success is to share good and serve God humbly. Karma can be a bitch – but it also works the other way around. Besides the fact that this is the right thing to do, I encourage you to keep spreading good, helping people and serving your God. By doing so you will feel better and more blessed than by just hoarding money and power for the sake of it.

I am pretty sure that if you master these five rules you will thrive and experience great wonders. Implement The 5 Golden Rules Of Success to your organization and you will witness times of prosperity and joy in the following months and years to come. I will dive more in depth to these five rules of success in the future, explaining them all more in detail as well as giving tips and tricks to utilize them in everyday life.

For the end I would love to ask the question for you to think:

Are you ready to change and be successful?

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How To Build A Roadmap for Success

Roadmaps are great. They can help us to implement long and difficult strategies to the ground level operations, make our team’s goals more achievable, and also are a fun way to get to know yourself. I personally recommend doing a roadmap for any goal that feels even a bit challenging to reach. It can be done for yourself, for your team, or why not even for the family?

How a roadmap should look like?

Don’t worry that much about the form or look of the roadmap. Most of all it is a way to communicate what to do and when. For sure it can be a piece of visually stunning art, but a list written in a napkin can also do the job. In short, the best roadmap is the one you are able to carry either in your mind or in your pocket.

The article will continue after the image.

How to fill the roadmap?

  1. First make sure that you know where we are now. Which are your strengths, aspirations and ambitions?
  2. Get a clear vision of your goal. Where do you want to go? Why do you want to go there? What happens when you get there? How does it feel when you reach your destination? Images can help you visualize your goal. Let’s say you want to get a raise in order to buy a new car. So google the image and use it to get a good grip of what you are working for.
  3. What skills, elements, investments you need to make to get started. These are most likely the first steps on your trip.
  4. Now you have done the beginning and the end. Draw a path between them and start building the steps one by one.
  5. For some people it can be a tremendous help if you think about it as playing a board game and building the path from a to b, c to d and so on.
    The article will continue after the image.
  6. Prefer using as concrete tasks as possible.
  7. Avoid placing goals that are not achievable. It is important to have big plans, but it is as important to know your limits in order to not get too badly hurt. Being successful is a delicate mix of being ambitious as well as rational and realistic.
  8. Remember to update your roadmap as you are working your way on it. Sometimes in life things happen overnight, and sometimes there can be obstacles that require you to take a detour.
  9. Also remember to reward yourself when reaching mid-goals and goals. That will help you to reach your goals better in the future. Find out how the positive reinforcement works – even for yourself. 😉
  10. Make sure you make your goals and roadmaps public, it will increase the possibility of completing them. At least if you want your organization to know where they should be heading to. But you can also consider communicating your own growth plan, as by doing so you might find friends who share the same goal, and you can help each other. Good leaders also want to help their employees to grow, so it can be that by sharing your roadmap, you are able to help your boss to do their job better.

Here is the example I made for the 2017

It is good to know, that as this is an upper level roadmap, each box will require its own roadmap. But alas; this will help me to remember the big picture I am building for the 2017, and I wish that it would help you to build your own roadmap to be an ever better leader!

 

 

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How to generate trust in organization: 8/8 – Start to trust

This is the last posting from a series of 8 short articles “How to generate trust in an organization”. The topics spring to life from my own experiences as well as from various books and articles I’ve read in the past. The most influential writers have no doubt been John C. Maxwell and Simon Sinek. Both emphasize the importance of high moral driven “people first” leadership.

How to generate trust in organization: 8 – Start to trust

Obviously the last – but not the least – thing to create trust is to trust. If you don’t trust to people, it is very unlikely that they would trust you or the organization you are presenting.

For some people it is really hard to trust people. And no doubt, too often people will break the trust. But becoming cynical just makes leader’s life hard, or at least the leader becomes a bottleneck for growth. When we are trying to lift our team/organization to the level of high performance, it is just crucial to understand:

There is no way you can win big championships alone.

Please feel free to share and discuss this in the comments, LinkedIn or on Twitter. To make sure you get all the 8 ways to generate trust, subscribe to the blog at:

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To Excel Now And In The Future

In my opinion

If we are truly interested in the organizational growth and excellence, it is crucial to tap into collective wisdom and to the brainpower of many. Modern leadership is not about forcing people to execute one’s vision. The more there are brains working to solve problem, the more likely it is that the best solution is found in a shorter time. This is pretty simple math.

It is also good to note that by committing employees to the company – by letting them co-create the vision – the leader is not deemed to take all of the pressure of the progress by him- or herself.

To excel now and in the future

  1. The organization must get better in the things it is good at
  2. The organization must be willing to try learning, creating, and innovating something new that has demand I.e. someone is willing to pay for.
“Our belief was that if we kept putting great products in front of customers, they would continue to open their wallets.”
Steve Jobs

What if the organization focuses just on the another one?

If the organization focuses on just getting better in where it is good at, there will be a time when our product/service will be obsolete. Think for a second about Kodak, Blockbuster, Reader’s Digest…

“Intellectual property has the shelf life of a banana.”
Bill Gates

If the organization uses too much time just on innovating and never releases a product or service, there is a risk that someone will go out and steal the business opportunity. It is also possible that in reality there is no market available or the world just is not ready yet for the product/service. The latter two scenarios usually happen only if the strategic market research has been done poorly.

Timing

“Observe due measure, for right timing is in all things the most important factor.”
Hesiod

It is absolutely crucial to understand that the timing is the most important factor in business and growth: because customer demand is the key factor. Even if we had the perfect team with the perfect idea, business-model, and execution, there is no value without demand.

The role of an ever better leader

  1. The great modern leader is a servant of employees,
  2. who creates an atmosphere of trust and fellowship,
  3. where passionate people are able to reach their potential,
  4. with proper incentives to make miracles happen
  5. while making sure that the company is profitable.
“Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.”
Henry Ford

* : Co-creating the vision can get awesome results, but only if the organization is a high performing one. If people are not passionate and fully committed, the leader’s vision is crucial for the organization to survive. In an organization that is reactive and lacks motivation, the leader should first uproot possible organizational primal fears and increase motivation and happiness as I have written earlier. Then it is time to communicate the personal vision until the organization is ready to be co-creative.

This posting was inspired by my experiences and by the following TED Talks:

And as a curious reader bonus here is a checklist you can share, print and check all that apply:

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How to keep people HAPPY and MOTIVATED

Any organization can and will thrive if the people are happy, motivated, capable of independent work, and have a strong passion and belief of importance. But even a formerly great organization can kick the bucket if the motivation dies or is destroyed by bad leadership.

The most important tool to build a high performing organization is leadership which focuses on removing obstacles which would prevent growth and good atmosphere. The single biggest obstacle is fear, which I wrote about earlier. And that fear should be uprooted from the organizational soil first thing. Nothing grows in a land of fear.

“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”
Yoda

In the following  I have listed the other noxious elements that prevent organizations to thrive. After each problem there is a solution offered.

  1. Lack of communication and transparency
    “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”
    George Bernard Shaw

    Solution: Communicate! What is the direction? Where are we, what is happening, what has been decided, who has decided, who can decide and what?
    Transparency should pass through everything in a modern up-to-date organization. Information that is not free creates rumors and destroys trust.

  2. Feeling of separation

    Solution: As mentioned in my earlier post, we humans are tribal mammals, and that is why it is very important for us that we feel being part of the tribe. When we feel fellowship we are more willing to help. Wise leaders tear down silos, glass roofs and help people feel being part of one big family. Easy tricks are to have lunches, parties, sports evenings and personal discussions.

  3. Lack of respect
    “Corporate culture matters. How management chooses to treat its people impacts everything – for better or for worse.”
    Simon Sinek


    Solution:
    Every normal human needs approval. The need varies from individual to individual, but only those who are emotionally twisted (I.e. psychopaths and narcissists) do not crave for acceptance. The bigger the status of person who gives feedback the bigger the emotional reward. Simple words to increase the feeling of respect is to say publicly “thank you, you did an awesome job with that project/thing X. It really made a difference to have you in the team!” If you want to be an ever better leader, consider also hugging* the person you just praised. That will release oxytocin which is so called “love hormone” and bonds people together.

    * be aware of the cultural rules, sometimes shaking hands does the job.

  4. No rewards from high performance
    “Money is not the only answer, but it makes a difference.”
    Barack Obama


    Solution:
    Every organization that aims for high performance has a reward system. This is essential, because the best players want to see in their bank account how their efforts are rewarded. This rewarding mechanism should be as transparent as possible and allow everyone to join. If there is no financial rewarding mechanism or it is unfair, trust me, high performers will leave when given possibility. If they are not leaving, they are not high performers and the organization never had one to recognize such.

  5. Unclear goals and job descriptions

    Solution: Most people value highly the situation where they know why they are hired and what they were hired to do. So it is the leader’s responsibility to communicate what is expected, set the KPI (key performance indicators for job) and agree about it with the employee. This can drastically improve the output as well as job satisfaction.

  6. Undersized resources

    Solution: Even the best possible expert can get frustrated and unmotivated if the tools or the time for the work are undersized. There are no shortcuts here: if the organization want’s best possible results, it needs to give enough time and the best tools available. If that is not possible, it is best to scale expectations down and prepare to watch when competitors take over the market.

  7. No possibility to improve in expertise or to develop in career path

    “If you look really closely, most overnight successes took a long time.”
    Steve Jobs

    Solution: High performing organizations make sure they have the best people around and that those people stay the best and motivated. That is why for example Google has allowed people to use 20% of their time to make their own projects and learn new skills. That sure is one of the reasons why Google is one of the most, if not the most, innovative corporation in the world.

  8. No feedback
    “We all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.”
    Bill Gates


    Solution:
    Give feedback and learn to know how the individual is capable to digest it without turning it as a negative issue. In short there are three kinds of people:

    – People who only want to hear good news. Occasionally upper level executives under too much pressure, people who have low self esteem or those few who suffer from rare personality disorders.

    – People who can handle also constructive feedback if that is served appropriately and accompanied with something nice. Most people belong to this group.

    – People who seem to not give a shit about positive feedback but lust for educational feedback to ensure fast growth. These kinds of people are very rare, almost non-existent, there is no big ego to prevent growth.

  9. No possibility TO give feedback

    Solution: Arrange regular (monthly) one-to-one sessions and work environment surveys with option to suggest how things could be done smarter.
    It is as important to give a chance to give feedback as it is to get one. Great places to work allow possibility and a forum for honest feedback without being afraid of punishment. Never try to bury possible issues that come to your attention.

  10. Too many and STRICT processes

    “Everything that is not forbidden, should be regulated.”
    Anonymous Finnish government official

    Solution: Processes might make things easy, but what they also do is that they drain the creativity from the work. Sure some guidelines are OK, but they should support the work rather than restrict it. The more people are given freedom to be independent the more they are willing to give for the work. Study also say that 91% of people consider themselves to be more productive when given more freedom to decide when and where to work from. To allow remote working is one of the best ways to increase happiness in an individual.

  11. Lack of trust

    “It is more shameful to distrust our friends than to be deceived by them.” Confucius

    Solution: No human relationship can excel without trust. It is extremely important to know that there is a place to come tomorrow despite of the possible challenges. Never ever should an employee or even a leader get punished for making an unintentional mistake. That will kill creativity. Not only for the person punished, but for the entire team or even organization. Such organization will pretty soon experience motivation deprivation as well as talented people starting to look for better places to work.

In my following posts I will go into more detail on how to create trust and fellowship. These two key elements are the foundation of any great place to work.

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