Blog Archive

6 Tips for Resolving Conflicts


Resolving conflicts whether in office, in friends community or at home is a challenge. The situation sometimes get worst when nobody shows the flexibility on his/her stance. The below tips might help when you have been assigned (Or you assign it to yourself) to resolve  the conflict.

1-    Be fair regardless of your relation with different parties. Sometimes your closed one can be wrong. Hence make up your mind to be transparent and fair throughout. Judge people fairly
2-   Empathetic Listening is very important. Listen to all parties carefully. Put yourself in their shoes to understand their stance.
3-   Carefully analyze the statements from each party. List down the pros 
and cons of the stance from each party. Sometimes both parties are right and sometimes both are wrong. In your analysis you need to find the option which gives maximum benefit to everyone.  Article written by Junaid.Tahir
4-   If the conflict is between two persons, consider a solution which neither party-A has proposed, neither B. Propose third solution which suits both persons. Consider Win-Win scenario where everyone gains something at the cost of compromise.
5-   If you want to give advice to a party (which you think is wrong), give it privately. Don't do counseling when both are present. This will offend one party and may strain the relations further. Remember not tocriticise. Article written by Junaid.Tahir
6-   Sometimes youngsters are right and old ones are wrong. If the issue is not too serious, request youngsters to be flexible. It always pay off. Remember that we have learnt so much from our seniors (bosses, team leads, parents and other senior family members). So this is the time to pay back to make them feel proud about their teachings and to develop trust in relations. 

Developing emotional intelligence is another approach to study people and understand them in depth. As per Wikipedia "Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to identify, assess, and control the emotions of oneself, of others, and of groups" Learn this technique to improve your mental powers. Google it.

Microsoft Excel: Pivot Table Tricks to Make You a Star

Pivot  Table Tricks ExcelWe, data junkies, love pivot tables. We think pivot tables are solution for everything (except for may be global warming and that broken espresso machine down stairs).
Today, we are going to learn 5 awesome pivot table tricks that will make you a star.
Click on these links to jump to tips.
(If you are not familiar with basic pivot tables, you should check out this excellent pivot tables tutorial)

1. Drill down on your Pivots with Double click

This is by far the simplest and most powerful pivot table trick I have learned. Whenever you want to see the values behind a pivot field just double click on it.
Lets say, the sales of Lawrence in Middle region  is $5,908 and you want to know which items contribute for this total, when you double click on the number $5,908 excel will show a list of all the records that add up to this number, neatly arranged in a new worksheet. Instant drill down.
See this magical trick in action.
Drill  Down Pivot Tables

2. Summarize Pivot Data by "Average" or some other formula

By default excel summarizes pivot data by "sum" or "count" depending on data type. But often you may want to change this to say "average", to answer questions like "what is the average sales per product". To do this, just right click on pivot table values (not on row or column headings) and select "summarize data by" and select "Average" option.
Summarize By Average Pivots
(In excel 2003, you have to do this from "field settings" menu option)

3. Slice & Dice your Pivot Tables with Grace

Re-arranging pivot table layouts is as easy as shuffling a pack of cards. Just drag and drop the fields from row areas to column areas (vice-a-versa) and you have the pivot table rearranged.
Here is a simple screencast explaining the secret
Slice And Dice Pivot Report

4. Show difference from last month (or year) without bending backwards

We all know that you can show monthly summaries using Pivots. But what if your boss wants you to also include "difference from previous month"  as well? Now, dont rush back to source data and add new columns. Here is the right trick to make you a star.
  • Just use field settings to tell excel how you want the data to be summarized.
  • Right click on any pivot table value, select "value field settings"
  • Now go to "Show value as tab" and Change "Normal" to "Difference from"
  • Select "Previous" from Base-item area. Leave Base field as-is.
Now, your pivot is updated to show difference from previous column.
Difference From Last Month Pivot Report
Bonus: There are quite a few value field settings you can mess with. Go play and discover something fun. :)

5. Add new dimensions to your Pivot Reports with Calculated Fields

Let us say you have both "sale" and "profit" values in your source data. Now, your boss wants to know "profit %" in the pivot report (defined as Profit/Sales). You need not add any extra columns in your source data, instead you can define custom calculated fields with ease and use them in pivot reports.
  • To do this, Go to pivot table options ribbon, select "formulas" > "calculated field"
  • Now define a new calculated field by giving it a name and some meaningful formula.
  • Make sure you adjust the cell formatting so that output of calculation can be displayed (for eg. change number to % format)
(In excel 2003, the formula option is available from Pivot menu in toolbar)
See this tip in action:
Calculated Fields Pivot Tables

What is your favorite pivot table trick?

Twitter LinkedIn Facebook Blogger Blog RSS Google Plus Page

Need Suggestion for Social Cause

Dear Friends
A friend of mine intends to launch a website to promote the concept of supporting/helping others through financial, ethical, social, moral and educational means. He shall be posting videos, audios, pictures and other articles with the mission that the message of helping others is reached to every single human on earth and is refreshed again and again. The overall intention is to reduce the poverty, stress, hunger and poorness index in our societies. 

I request you to please suggest a website name including any of the following concept/words.

Many thanks for your time.
Junaid Tahir 

Story: The Gossip Girl

A woman repeated a bit of gossip about a neighbor.
Within a few days the whole community knew the story.
The person it concerned was deeply hurt and offended.
Later the woman responsible for spreading the rumor learned
that it was completely untrue. She was very sorry and went to a wise old sage to find out what she could do to repair the damage.
"Go to the marketplace," he said, "and purchase a chicken,
and have it killed. Then on your way home, pluck its feathers
and drop them one by one along the road."
Although surprised by this advice,
the woman did what she was told.

The next day the wise man said, "Now go and collect all those feathers you dropped yesterday and bring them back to me."

The woman followed the same road, but to her dismay,
the wind had blown the feathers all away. After searching
for hours, she returned with only three in her hand.

"You see," said the old sage, "it's easy to drop them,
but it's impossible to get them back. So it is with gossip.
It doesn't take much to spread a rumor but once you do,
you can never completely undo the wrong."


Junaid Tahir

Twitter LinkedIn Facebook Blogger Blog RSS Google Plus Page
Twitter Latest tweet: 10 Signs Someone Is Smarter Than You: Unless you think you're the smartest, who doesn't want to be smarter? Of...
Follow @DailyTenMinutes Reply Retweet 07:39 Oct-11

10 Signs Someone Is Smarter Than You

Unless you think you're the smartest, who doesn't want to be smarter? Of course I want to be smarter too, so I try to find out who's the real smart guy that maybe I can learn from. James Gardner has got me an answer on Quoraabout whether someone's smart or not.

Here are the signs of smart people:

  1. They don't talk as much as you do, because they know they got smart by listening.
  2. They know lots of things other than what they're specialised in. Theirs is the gift of a broad mind, constantly fed with the stimulant of being interested in what everyone else is doing.
  3. They juggle home, work and personal interests with dexterity and never fall back on the tired old refrain about "work life balance". And when they're juggling, they somehow manage to seem 100% engaged with what they're doing, on all fronts simultaneously, even though you know they're taking appropriate steps behind the scenes to make sure their lives are perfectly, serenely balanced.
  4. They probably do social media. Not always, but probably. It is not only another chance to listen, but one they use to ensure they can feed their brains with things they otherwise won't have come across.
  5. Even when things go very badly wrong, they'll be smiling. Smart people never get ruffled because their smart brains present them with alternatives faster than the bad stuff can happen.
  6. They know they are usually the smartest person in the room, but they don't spend their time dwelling on that. Instead, they take it as a personal challenge to see if they can make everyone else the smartest person in the room too.
  7. If they are managers, they will make every effort to get people smarter, more connected and more popular than them in their teams. They're not threatened because they know that smartness is synergistic. They also make sure that their smart people get to look smarter than them for the same reason.
  8. They have hidden skills that never get rolled out until they're needed. They don't have any need to show their full capabilities for reasons of proving they're better than others.
  9. They may or may not have expensive educations. You'd never know just by being with them unless you had their CV in front of you.
  10. They never, ever, under any circumstances, make you look stupid, even though it would be easy to do so. They've learned through bitter experience that the only thing that happens when you make someone look bad is you look bad yourself.

Now you should know who the smart people are. If you want to be the smart one, let me give you this extra advice from Steve Jobs "Stay hungry. Stay foolish."



Junaid Tahir

Twitter LinkedIn Facebook Blogger Blog RSS Google Plus Page
Twitter Latest tweet: Are You Looking Happy OR Actually Happy?: Happiness is not based on the way you appear. Happiness is an ... Follow @DailyTenMinutes Reply Retweet 13:18 Oct-09

The 10 Commandments Of Salary Negotiations

By WALTER S. KELLER (Source = The Salary Expert)

While exploring new career options, I asked two neighbors who had made recent job changes what percentage pay increase they received. I was surprised when one told me 39%. When the second said his new salary was 46% higher, I realized that increases in job changing weren't limited to the 5% to 10% usually given for internal promotions and cost-of-living raises.

My neighbors did me a great favor. They opened my eyes to the truth in this statement: You can negotiate anything. Here are my 10 commandments for negotiating a new salary.

1. Research your profession's salary range. Check with recruiters in your field (even if you don't pursue their leads), competitors, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook, the Internet, your local chamber of commerce and trade publications.

2. Select a target salary or total pay. You may not get the amount you want, but having a specific objective can help you get close.

3. Don't initiate salary discussions. Wait for the interviewer to bring the subject up, even if it's postponed to a second interview.

4. When asked for your salary requirements, say that they're "negotiable." Do the same on applications by writing "negotiable" in any box asking about salary details. If the form asks you to provide current salary, write, "to be covered during interview." This isn't being evasive, because without knowing details about benefits, how could you select a salary figure?

5. When asked for your salary requirements, reply by asking the interviewer to share the position's salary range. If your request isn't granted, excuse yourself politely and leave. (Would you want to work for a firm that won't respond to this legitimate request?)

6. Discuss benefits separately from salary. Your list of benefits can include insurance, tuition reimbursement, relocation payments, stock options, bonuses and outplacement upon termination.

7. Analyze all benefit packages with a family member or friend, or with an insurance, investment or bank professional. They'll provide you with an invaluable second opinion and may look at the offer more objectively.

8. Consider the cost of living if you're moving to a new area, and if it's higher, suggest that you be paid a differential.

9. In discussing why you deserve a substantial increase, use examples of your accomplishments that prove your value, not merely your experience. Comparisons to your current salary are irrelevant and should be avoided; you're talking about the benefits you'll bring, not your past salary, which you may have had no control over.

10. Always assume a firm's first offer is negotiable and never accept an offer at the interview. Express your strong interest, but state you always discuss decisions of this magnitude with advisers whose judgment you have relied upon for years. Tell your interviewer when you'll contact him or her with your decision.

By following these commandments, you'll increase your chances of receiving a pay increase well into the double-digits.

Mr. Keller is a consultant with CareerPro, a career consulting firm based in Willow Grove, Pa 

The Resume Workshop

How to Negotiate For the Salary You Want


The biggest problem all interviewees experience is the knotty problem of worth. Most employers want what you have to offer. The trouble is they don't want to pay for it. Don't be put off by this. They have to pay for it and they know it - they just don't want to!! Of course it seem to be an even greater problem if you are coming from a position of being unemployed.

With that as background, one needs to enter into the salary negotiations with a degree of sensitivity, backed up by a good dose of determination. Diplomacy and tact are important. You don't want to lose a great job because you appear greedy. What you are after is a fair return on your investment into their business - or a fair day's pay for a fair day's work.

The Rules of Negotiation

The starting point for all salary negotiations is unspoken. It will rest in the quality of your resume which must be put together to reflect your true worth. This is why it's so important to address your entire skill base to see what added value you can bring to the company over and above fulfilling the job description. You must also address the success you have had, which is why our questionnaire goes into so much detail over these questions. Even if you have been unemployed, you have still had successes in life. It doesn't matter that you weren't in employment at the time. These are important pointers to your worth to a potential employer and will also form the basis of the questions you'll be asked at the interview. You will therefore have plenty of opportunity to elaborate on your achievements and you should take the opportunity with both hands and exploit it. A well prepared resume can add 10% - 15% to the salary the company is prepared to offer - this based on the quality of the resume alone.

It goes without saying that the way you present yourself at the interview will have a marked effect on all negotiations, whether about salary or anything else. If you look scruffy and unwashed you'll be doomed no matter how capable you are. These points might seem obvious, but they all impact on the outcome you want. You have to play to their rules, not yours. Remember the old maxim - "You only get one chance at a first impression." Actually this is not quite true with a job interview. Here you get two chances. The first is the resume which will lead to the forming of an impression before you personally have been met. The second is the meeting, which MUST back up and reinforce the original impression, or even improve upon it.

Part of your interview preparation must be to research salary levels and salary ranges for the job you're applying for. Don't be satisfied with a simple answer. You need to check whether there are variations across different industries too. Go to your interview armed with this information so that you know the boundaries of your negotiations, that is to say, the minimum to accept and the maximum to ask for.

Another source of important advice is the recruitment or employment agency you have used (if you have used one that is!). There are three reasons for this.

1. They should know the going rate for the job.
2. The employer will have indicated to them what they are prepared to pay.
3. Agencies are often paid a percentage of the first years salary, so it's in their best interests to get you as much money as possible!

Now that you are armed with the ammunition for your negotiations, you need to sell yourself. Selling yourself is no different from selling widgets. And the same buying truisms prevail. People buy from people they like, and this will often over-ride price. Go to the interview prepared in every aspect. Be prepared to talk about your work, your family, your political attitudes, everything. But above all make them like you, and make them believe that you will add value to the company. In other words, you will be worth more to them than the amount they pay you. It is very important to understand that. Think about what you will generate and be ready to show them if the opportunity arises. Help them to understand that if they pay you X you will help increase turnover to Y - or whatever is an appropriate measure for the effect you will have on the business.

There is always more than one way to achieve your aim. Be flexible and you'll get what you want. You don't want to lose the job because of greed any more than the employer wants to lose the right employee through meanness. If you don't appear to be getting what you want, talk about starting salary and a review in three months with a view to an increase. Consider bonus payments too. Go to the interview armed with a number of solutions. Above all, don't put yourself in the position of having to think on your feet on the day. You will always come off the worse in those situations. Should that unfortunate situation arise, ask for time to think and say you'll get back to them within twenty four hours.

Salary and Benefits

Remember that you can be paid in both cash and kind and taken together, that is your total remuneration package. Consider the following negotiating points alongside a basic salary.

1. Company car
2. Health Insurance
3. Pension Scheme
4. Vacation package (though it's best not to talk about days off at your interview!!)
5. Bonus schemes

All the above can be used to increase the benefit to you, without it necessarily costing the employer much. Assuming that the tax disadvantages do not outweigh the financial advantages, a company car is normally of far greater worth to you than what it will physically cost the company to provide it.

Have you been made Redundant?
Have you been out of work for some time?

Please don't feel you have to accept a lower salary than the norm just because you may be coming from a position of redundancy or unemployment. Your worth is your worth, and your worth is a combination of you personally and the added value you bring to the business. Redundancy or unemployment should not impact on that at all. If you allow a lowered self-esteem which may have sprouted from this situation to lull you into accepting less than is fair, it will breed resentment and that will reduce your ability to give your best to your new employer.

The Salary Negotiations

At some point in your interview you will be faced with one or two inevitable questions. The right approach to both is essential if you are to succeed in your expectations.

* "How much did you earn in your last job?"
* "What salary would you be looking for were you to be offered
this position?"

Let's take each question in turn.

How much did you earn in your last job?

The utmost caution is required at this point. Most people move jobs to progress in their careers and to get more money. Your own reason may be one or both of these, but perhaps you are coming from a position of unemployment. In any event, you don't want to disadvantage yourself by being strapped to what you used to earn, unless you are only looking for a small increase in earnings. Your employer may well try to give you a salary linked to your last one rather than pay the rate for the job. If you were unemployed he might try to pay you the bare minimum he can get away with. Don't let this happen.

If you were unemployed or if there is a big difference between what you were earning previously and what you want now - 15% or more, then take evasive action! Put the answer on hold, and be bold about it. Negotiations are two way affairs. Not only are they interviewing you for a job, but you are interviewing them to see if you want to work for them also. Never forget that. You should say that you would prefer not to answer that question at the moment until you have a fuller understanding of the responsibilities and expectations of the job you are applying for. Say that you don't believe you would be comparing like with like and therefore what you were earning before is not relevant at this juncture. Whatever happens don't just give them your basic salary. Add everything you can to it, every possible benefit and give them the grossed up amount - but not until it suits you to do so.

Of course if you have not been earning you cannot answer the question. It may be obvious from you resume that you have been unemployed - but in any event that has no bearing on what you should be paid now. You should expect the market rate for the job. Because you've done your research before going for the interview, you will know what that is. Don't accept a penny less. Know what you're worth and hang out for it. If they want you, they'll pay for it. Of course you will have to start at the lower end of the salary scale, but never at less than that.

What salary would you be looking for were you to be offered this position?

You should have done your research on the salary ranges offered and therefore be in a position to give an informed answer. Unless you really are a top-notch prospect, don't pitch in at the top of the scale, but somewhere in the middle of the range. Speak to the recruiting or employment agent and ask their advice. You don't have to accept it, but they might have been given an indication by the employer of what they are willing to pay the right candidate. If you have been unable to determine the salary range beforehand, now is the time to ask the interviewer that question.

Now be bold. Refer them to your resume and experience and begin to tell then what you believe you're worth. Say, "You will see from my resume that I am very experienced in this field (or whatever) and I know I will add value to your business. I judge myself to be well worth X and I would be looking at least for this amount." The way you approach this could add thousands to your package so be bold and confident, but not cocky.

A word of warning - do not answer this question until you feel satisfied that they have the measure of your worth and that you have a complete understanding of the job on offer. If the question is asked too early in the interview, use the same delaying tactic as referred to earlier and say you would rather postpone answering until you have a better feel for the full responsibilities and expectation attaching to the position.

There is of course one further problem area and that is for a newly created post. What do you do then? Well in many ways it is just the same. Do your research on salary ranges across industries. Discover what others are being paid so that you have a basis for negotiation. It may well be that the employer is not too sure what the salary should be either. Perhaps the role will develop, and the job description change with experience. One solution is to agree an initial package and then agree to review it upward say in three or six months. Whatever is agreed, make sure it is in writing and incorporated into your contract of employment.


In summary, you must enter the interview phase as an equal party to the negotiations. Both sides need to see whether they like the other and can work together. Salary negotiations are also a two-sided affair. The employer wants your labour, skills and experience. In return you want some of his money. Turn the whole thing on it's head and ask yourself this question: If the employer were to say, "I'll pay you X, what are you prepared to give me for that?", you begin to see there are two sides to the negotiation. If you are offered a miserable amount of money, be prepared to say you'll accept it, but you'll only work three days a week! That should make the point that you are no fool and know what you're worth!! Seriously - there are clearly two sides and each must honor the other fairly. Don't allow all the balls to be in the employer's court where they so often seem to be left.

Be well prepared, clean, tidy, polite, diplomatic, forthcoming, focussed and determined. Enjoy the interview and may each side feel they have won.


Junaid Tahir

Twitter LinkedIn Facebook Blogger Blog RSS Google Plus Page
Twitter Latest tweet: Story - Divorce after 35 years :) Follow @DailyTenMinutes Reply Retweet 15:47 Sep-02