Blog Archive

Are You an Analytical Person?


By Junaid Tahir
Analytical Skills help you in many ways in personal and professional situations. Through Analytical Skills, not only you find the root cause of the problems but also work on the possibilities to resolve them.  So the question is that whether you are analytical person?

In order to judge yourself, please check if you ask yourself these questions for any problematic situation?

1-    Why this issue has occurred? Who is the triggering person? What was the reason for this triggering?
2-   Is this because of some fault which could have been fixed? Or is this because of some human error which could have been controlled?
3-   What is the quantification of the issue?
4-   Do we need to involve some specialist or can we manage at our own?
5-   Can we break down the problem in smaller problems and address each small problem one by one?
6-   Have we applied 5 Ys principal?

5 Ys Principle is used to find out the root cause of any problematic situation. For a given justification of any problem, you ask “WHY” at least 5 times to know the actual cause of the issue.   
Let’s take a practical example to understand the 5 WHY principle and sharpen our analytical skills:
Your customer is not happy due to delayed material delivery so you, being the boss, ask your team lead:
a.    Why the hardware was not delivered to customer on time? (1st  WHY)
ANS: because it was not ordered on time.
b.    Why it was not ordered on time (2nd WHY)
ANS: The IT system did not release it to the Procurement Manager on time.
c.    Why IT system did not release it on time. (3rd WHY)
ANS: IT system has some bugs which causes it missing some of the notifications/releases.
d.    Why IT system has some bugs, who will fix it? (4th WHY)
 ANS: the IT engineer does not have the skill set to handle this.
e.    When did you come to know about this issue? Why you didn’t chase this delivery right from the day our customer ordered the hardware? (5th WHY)
In this example, the Boss has dug down the problem and found that IT system is not responding the way it should.. Also you found out that the team lead was not following up the End-to-End delivery otherwise he could have mitigate or fix the issue in advance.

So, from above analysis what you have concluded:
1-    The Team Lead needs to be trained so that he can have more strong follow up on the tasks.
2-   To restore your customer’s trust, give him/her some benefits as he/she is not happy due to delayed material delivery and might cancel future orders.
3-   Resolve IT issue ASAP so that other customers do not get impacted. Resolving this IT issue requires further analysis:  
a.     Is this a small bug which your IT engineer can handle through reading product’s manual?
b.    Is there any online forum through which you can seek help?
c.    If the IT system is secret then should you hire specialized services to resolve the problem?
d.    Is the software version is up-to-date?
e.    Do you need to hire a more experienced IT engineer to support the junior IT engineer.

In Summary, if you would like to enhance your analytical skills then:
1-    Ask a lot of questions for any problem/situation like Who, what, when, how, where etc.
2-   Breakdown the bigger problem, in smaller problems and then work on each smaller issue one by one to resolve.
3-   Think about the problem from Emotional perspective, financial angle, social aspect as well as logical view point.
4-   Use the right tools (Microsoft excel pivots, graphs, trend analysis tool, Fish bone diagram etc)
5-   Apply Six Sigma’s DMAIC Tool (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control)



About Author:
Junaid Tahir, a Telecom Engineer,  a Program Manager and a Blogger, writes articles on wisdom, happiness and stress management at his personal blog. His personal Google Group can be joined here. He is reachable at mjunaidtahir@gmail.com for all kinds of constructive feedback.


Life is Like a Wheel - You have to Balance It




Success introduces you to the world. Failure introduces the world to you. Life is like 
a wheel
having all attitude in the circle it is for you to place
your
self properly.


How to Handle Frequent Mood Swings


In a particular day, you may pass through several mood swings depending upon your circumstances. For instance you are sad, or happy, irritated, annoyed, stressful, depressed, cheerful or angry at different moments of time. As long as you are happy, everyone around you is fine with that however if you have a lot of mood swings in terms of being irritated, annoyed, sad, angry, reactive or stubborn it becomes a challenge for others to move along with you. Because of your swift mood swings your personality becomes unpredictable. The more unpredictable you become for others, the more likely you have the chance to lose your respect within your friends, family and colleagues.

So how to control these mood swings? Below are some points which you need to ponder on:
1-    Analyze yourself on what are the triggers which cause your mood swings? is this an event, or comment or act or presence of a person?  Fix the problem or start loving it. 
2-   Respect the fact that every single soul is a unique in terms of thinking and acting. You cannot order people to follow your way of thinking and living. Relax. Give respect to earn respect. It takes two hands to clap.
3-   Write down your triggers on a paper. You will notice that your problem is not that much big!
4-   Discuss your issue with the person and find out a solution. Be flexible. You may not be right in your demands or you may be completely wrong in your demands. Be honest, analytical and logical while you share your comments and desires.
5-   Observe others on how they react in different kind of circumstances. Find out a mentor in your life you can follow. Or even you can observe everyone because everyone has something to teach you. Closely observe. 
6-   Avoid taking stress. The more you take stress the more you lose control on your emotions and become unpredictable. Read my article on Stress by clicking here  and clicking here 
7-   Develop Trust in your relations so that people feel easy to get along with you.

What are your thoughts in controlling your mood swings? 

About Author: Junaid Tahir, a telecom engineer and a blogger, writes articles on wisdom, happiness and stress management. His articles can be read Here

TIP: Differentiate Between Sugar-Coated and Pure Human



By Junaid Tahir
While reading an article on blog the below lines caught my attention:
"Remember the next time you decide to give someone a chance whether it be for work or for friendship, go for the real thing and not the sugar-coated one"

These lines triggered some thoughts in my mind on what points to consider in differentiating between the genuine personality and sugar-coated human (the person who looks sweet from outside but having a grey or black heart). Below are my suggestions:

  1. One or two observations are not enough to conclude. Take some time.
  2. Instead of observing actions, check the habits. Sometimes actions may not portray the genuine inner personality; however habits can predict the character. Because habits trigger repetitive actions which transform into the overall personality. 
  3. Sometimes sugar coating is not done because of specific evil benefits instead may be it is because of ethical causes. Don't think negative about such person; appreciate instead.
  4. Look for ethical characteristics such as honesty, truthfulness, friendliness, down-to-earth.
  5. Instead of using your eyes, use brain. Think logical and think carefully in concluding about some

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Story: Judging Others Based On Their Looks


Once upon a time a wealthy old man lived alone in a very big house. He was growing weak day by day and was unable to take care of himself and the big house, so he thought of hiring servants who could help with all the work of the house and also take care of him.

The old man appointed two servants Salim and Ahmed. Salim happened to be a handsome young man and Ahmed was an ugly looking chap. The old man asked Salim to go to the kitchen and make tea for him. After Salim had left, the old man turned to Ahmed and told, "Salim has given a very bad account of you. He says you are very bad guy and untrustworthy. Is this correct?"

Ahmed thought for a moment and told, "Salim is a very handsome guy. He has a beautiful outward appearance so this must be reflected by his inward beauty too". Ahmed had the belief that such a handsome man could never tell a lie. He therefore told the old man, "If Salim has bad opinion about me, then there must be something wrong with me. I am afraid he must be correct"

The old man was very much impressed by the character of ugly looking Ahmed. Meanwhile, Salim returned with a cup of tea for his master.
The old man sent Ahmed to make breakfast for him and then turned to Salim and told, "Ahmed has given a bad account of you. What do you say about it?" On hearing this Salim became angry and started uttering bad remarks. He said that Ahmed was a liar and a scoundrel.

The Old man thus concluded that the man with a beautiful face had no inner beauty while the man looking ugly outward had tremendous inner beauty.

Moral of The Story
"Real beauty is not what the eyes can behold but what the heart can hold. What we see with our eyes will vanish someday, but what we store in our heart will forever stay…" – Unknown

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The Psychology of Lying


We all know how to lie from a very young age. Many children lie almost as soon as they can speak. But what actually goes through our head and brains when we deceive another person? Does our brain know the difference between reality and fiction. Find out all of this and more as you continue to read!

lying infographic



Emotional Bank Account - A unique Concept for strong relationships



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When it comes to improving and maintaining our relationships with others, Stephen Covey's metaphor of the Emotional Bank Account is probably one of the most powerful ideas ever created for the development of interpersonal relationships. If you've never heard of this, it basically means that anyone with whom we have a relationship with, whether it be our coworkers, family or friends, we maintain a personal "emotional" bank account with them. This account begins on a neutral balance. And just as with any bank account, we can make deposits and withdrawals. However, instead of dealing with units of monetary value, we deal with emotional units.

The emotional units that Covey speaks of are centered around trust. When we make emotional deposits into someone's bank account, their fondness, trust, and confidence in us grows. And as a result our relationship develops and grows. If we can keep a positive reserve in our relationships, by making regular deposits, there will be greater tolerance for our mistakes and we'll enjoy open communication with that person. On the contrary, when we make withdrawals and our balance becomes low or even overdrawn, bitterness, mistrust and discord develops. If we are to salvage the relationship, we must make a conscious effort to make regular deposits.
This post will discuss Covey's six major ways of making deposits into these Emotional Bank Accounts and how we can avoid making withdrawals.
1. Understanding the Individual
In Covey's book, seven habits of highly effective people, one of the seven habits is "seek first to understand then to be understood". Truly understanding what others are feeling is not always that easy. We must remove ourselves from our egocentric viewpoint and put ourselves into the minds and shoes of others. I say minds and shoes because we must try to first understand the thought patterns and second walk in their shoes or empathize with them.
One of my major faults when communicating with others is, while they are talking I tend to think what I am going to say next. Truly understanding someone requires us to wholly and completely concentrate on what the other person is trying to say, not reloading, just waiting to fire off your response
2. Keeping Commitments
Certainly when we break our promises to others, we make major withdrawals from their Emotional Bank Accounts. However, keeping commitments is not just relegated to promises. It also includes things such as arriving to work and appointments on time, fulfilling our duties, and living up to every word that comes out of our mouth.
3. Clarifying Expectations
There is nothing more frustrating in a relationship than not understanding what is expected of you. Although many of us wish we could be, we are not mind readers. And because each of us sees life differently and has different backgrounds and life experiences, expecting someone to just "know" is not only unfair but completely unrealistic. It's important that the person with whom you are dealing with, knows exactly what is expected of them. Doing this will keep them out of the dark and allow them to relate you confidently, knowing that what they are doing is in line with your expectations.
4. Attending to the Little Things
Little courtesies, kind words and warm smiles are at the heart of the little things that brighten up a relationship. It shows recognition and an awareness of others. It's interesting, but within our relationships, if you want success, it's the little things that really become the big things.
5. Showing Personal Integrity
Nothing is probably more damaging to a relationship, then a lack of integrity. Being that the Emotional Bank Account is based upon trust, you could essentially be doing all of the previous things, but without trust, it is to no avail. Integrity means wholeness, completeness, or soundness. In this case soundness of moral character. Integrity is the rock-solid foundation upon which all successful relationships are built.
6. Apologizing Sincerely When We Make a Withdrawal
Granted, we are all mortal. We make mistakes. That's part of life and learning. Knowing when you are wrong and admitting your mistakes prevents the wounds that you've caused in others from festering and allows them to heal. When appropriate, sincere apology will keep your relationships accounts in the positive, allowing you to maintain the balance that has been created in your application of all of the previous steps

http://www.lifetrainingonline.com/blog/the-emotional-bank-account.htm

Principles of Management - Henri Fayol

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from My Expressions by karthick 

Henri Fayol was born in 1841 in a suburb of Istanbul, Turkey. Fayol studied at the mining school in Saint-Étienne and joined a mining company in Commentry as an engineer. By 1888, he was a director of the mine which now employed over 1000 people. It became one of the largest producers of iron and steel in France. Fayol stayed there for 30 years until 1918 by which time he had written down his management experiences in a book called "Administration Industrielle et Générale", the book that would be his lasting legacy. This is an extraordinary little book that offers the first theory of general management and statement of management principles.

Fayol believed management theories could be developed, then taught. His theorising about administration was built on personal observation and experience of what worked well in terms of organisation. His aspiration for an "administrative science" sought a consistent set of principles that all organizations must apply in order to run properly.

Henri Fayol was one of the most influential contributors to modern concepts of management, having proposed that there are five primary functions of management: Planning, Organizing, Commanding, Coordinating and Controlling. Henri Fayol was the first to identify the four functions of management: planning, organizing, directing, and controlling, as known today. He then went on to explain that these functions should be carried out according to 14 principles of management, namely:

1. Specialization of labour. Specializing encourages continuous improvement in skills and the development of improvements in methods.
2. Authority. The right to give orders and the power to exact obedience.
3. Discipline. No slacking, bending of rules. The workers should be obedient and respectful of the organization.
4. Unity of commandEach employee has one and only one boss.
5. Unity of direction. A single mind generates a single plan and all play their part in that plan.
6. Subordination of Individual Interests. When at work, only work things should be pursued or thought about.
7. Remuneration. Employees receive fair payment for services, not what the company can get away with.
8. Centralization. Consolidation of management functions. Decisions are made from the top.
9. Chain of Superiors (line of authority). Formal chain of command running from top to bottom of the organization, like military
10. Order. All materials and personnel have a prescribed place, and they must remain there.
11. Equity. Equality of treatment (but not necessarily identical treatment)
12. Personnel Tenure. Limited turnover of personnel. Lifetime employment for good workers.
13. Initiative. Thinking out a plan and do what it takes to make it happen.
14. Esprit de corps. Harmony, cohesion among personnel. It's a great source of strength in the organisation. Fayol stated that for promoting esprit de corps, the principle of unity of command should be observed and the dangers of divide and rule and the abuse of written communication should be avoided.

Fayol has been described as the father of modern operational management theory. Fayol's ideas had a major effect on how management functions in most established organisations. In many ways, they are the bible of management and the source of the idea that "managers have the right to manage". Whether knowingly or not, anyone who manages, even today, is almost certainly managing in accordance with Fayol's ideas and principles

Zoom In and Zoom out






By Junaid Tahir
On the mobile phone or camera, the zoom in feature is used to take the picture of a specific object. You ignore other objects because your point of focus is this particular object. On the contrary, the zoom out feature is used in order to capture more wider area so as to cover more and more objects. This is a picture taking technique but do you know that we use the same technique with our brain in order to make mental pictures about objects and people? Here are a couple of examples:

  1.  You have been very supportive to this friend in his/her tragic moments in the past so many times however couldn't met his/her expectations at a specific difficult situation and then he/she told you that you are the most irresponsible or disloyal person. At this particular moment your friend has 'Zoomed-in' too much in your personality that he/she is only able to see and judge about your carelessness, incapability or betrayal trait. However, ideally, he should 'Zoom-out' look at your overall personality and remember the things which you have done for him/her in the past. In this case, his Zoom-In attitudes is very much inappropriate and you are not happy about it.
  2.  Your friend told you that tires making company ABC-Tires produce worst tires as he had recently tire burst case within three months of purchase. Based on this you made the perception that this tire company is most awful company. You ignore the fact that this company is selling thousands of tires daily. If their fault rate was this much high, the company should have been banned by the authorities. Also, you ignored that your friend might have driven his car on such an area where some sharp thing (blade, pin, nails etc) has caused the tire burst. So basically you fell under the trap of same Zoom-In thing. By the way, I am not saying to ignore the tire burst thing completely; what I am emphasizing on is that don't make an All-Positive or All-Negative image about someone or something. Give proper weight to all associated factors to conclude things.

Specifically for professionals here are two examples about using the Zoom-in Zoom-out tool.
1-    Use the zoom-in tool when you intend to draw your management's attention to a specific part of the large project which they are ignoring. This is to help them understand the low level details of the project. For example, if the boss asking that your project is over-budgeted then you can elaborate the micro level expenses of the project using Zoom-In.
2-   Use the zoom-out tool to let your field staff understand the big picture of the project so that he can perform their activities with more maturity. This will improve their mental horizon too. Article written by Junaid Tahir

Overall it is highly recommended to use this tool whenever you are going to conclude something whether small or big. Remeber, small mistakes sometimes lead to big disasters. Hence, carefully analyze the situation and see if you are too much zoomed in or too much zoomed out? Make sure your conclusions are based on fair assessment of the situation. Also remember that sometimes you don't even have to zoom-in or zoom-out since you are already at neutral level to judge the situation.

Some recommended articles on Personality Building:
The Ultimate guide to Stress Management

Leadership Vision - A Critical Personality Trait for True Leaders



The young boy asked the old man, "why a fast running horse is better than the slow running horse"? The old man said, "it has developed the habit to produce more power so that it can run up to ten times faster than the slow horse" The youngster said, "and what if the horse is running in the wrong direction"? The old man smiled and said, "then definitely it has the appropriate factor to waste his efforts ten times quicker than the slower horse" The young man said, " and what if other horses are following him too" The older man said, "off course it will mislead all those horses too!" "Then why all other horses follow the faster one" "Because that attracts them but all that glitters is not gold sometimes" Article written by Junaid.Tahir

Associating this analogy with our daily life, you notice that you are surrounded by mixture of slow and fast pace personalities. Some of them are really genuine leaders and some of them are being followed blindly. Overall, here is the summary of the concept of Visionary Leaders which I suggest you to ponder:


1-   If you have a slow attitude towards life (slow running horse) then you must develop the habit to produce more power in your character. You must be aware of your real goals. You must develop analytical skills, Empowered Relationships, Proactive approach and other personality traits such as Commitment, Courage, Communication Skills, Focus, Competence and Passion. 
2-  If you have a faster response to life and  quick decision making then you must audit yourself on whether you are heading in the right direction? Not having clear goal will take you nowhere regardless of your speed and efficiency. Remember, Only hard work doesn't guarantee the success. , the vision and strategy are the most important ingredients of the success which is acheived through consistent, productive and effective efforts in the right direction.
3-  Are you following a leader? Are you sure you have a true leader? Are you sure you will not end up on the blocked road? Remember, U-turns are always possible before the dead end but consequences of U-turn will be more harsh if you don't evaluate the situations on time and delay it to the eleventh hour.

While you ponder about the concept of Vision in Leaders, you may want to read these personality building articles too:

1-     Effective Decision Making
2-    Resolving Conflicts Effectively
3-    Developing Stable Personality
4-    Becoming Implosive Personality
5-    Effective Anger Management
6-    Being strong in Tragic Moments