Blog Archive

An Introduction to Professional Consultants




By Junaid Tahir:
Management consultants help organizations improving their business index in term of better performance, higher customer satisfaction, healthier practices implementation, tweaking strategies and management paradigms, enhanced skill sets of team members, concrete grip on internal process flows and identifying the key areas where improvements are required to be implemented. (You may want to read management consultants' role HERE). Below is the list of specific traits, management consultants are required to possess:

C-Competent – They are up to date with the industry. They are competent enough to understand the problems their client is facing. They have specialised soft and hard tools to ensure thorough audits and ensure continuous improvement.

O-Organized – They understand that staying Organized helps in many ways in terms of time saving, avoiding panic situation, better customer satisfaction and so on. Ensure accessibility of information by keeping documentation, processes and data arranged.

N-Niche Specialist – They are specialists of the domain. Having thorough knowledge, deep level wisdom, in sync with industry activities they ensure they are on top of it when their customers engage them in any sort of discussion related to the niche.  

S-Supportive – The consultants help ensure implementation and governance of processes and recommendations based on their audit and analysis. They understand that their customers' success is their success so they strive to support their customers for anything which might help cause improvement in the business domain.

U-Unbiased—With their focus on overall improvement and having belief in supremacy of policies they ensure they are not biased to any person. Though they take into account the sensitivity of the stance taken by different stake holders.

L-Listeners – They understand that effective listening is part of effective communication. They are empathic listeners so that they understand the core of the challenges with the belief in the philosophy of 'customer comes first'

T-Trust Worthy – Winning target is easy, winning customers/people is tough. By becoming trust worthy the consultants make their place in the heart and mind of their customers and develop permanent long-term relationship which is mutually benefit for both the parties. So the consultants develop trust by their consistent candid behaviour, by empathic listening, by giving the right advice, by judging the people fairly and eventually treating them fairly.

A-Analytical – This is the most critical skill all consultants must have. The prime purpose for the Analysis of any given situation is to get to know the root cause(s) of the issue, to forecast the impact and to plan corrective/preventive actions strategy. So basically analytical skill is to visualize a given situation, task, project or issue from several angles in order to breakdown it into smaller steps. Breakdown the big problem in smaller ones and fix one by one. The consultants consider the situation from multiple angles including Statistical, Financial, Operational and Social perspectives in order to come up with the most effective recommendations about the situation, task or project.

N-North Bound Thinkers – with the belief in continuous improvement they always think upwards. They think about perfection from Cost optimization, Quality assurance, Scope control, fault reduction, resource optimization and so on. 

T-Time Bound – The consultants fully understand the value of time and sensitivity of market trends hence they ensure brisk audits, fast but sound analysis, controlled implementation of new recommendations by effective delegation.  

S-Strategic – Consultants are Visionary. They begin with the end in mind. They see the future today and align their strategies based on their knowledge, experience, market study and risk analysis.
The consultants having these qualities can bring flying colour success to any organization
they work for
or any project they are assigned to.

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About Author: Junaid Tahir is a passionate blogger. He writes articles on Leadership, Stress Management and Life Enhancement subjects at his personal blog
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7 Qualities of Highly Ethical People


By Junaid Tahir:


People are ethical because of social norms, religious beliefs and laws. Ethical foundations in an individual define the way he lives the life by differentiating between right and wrong and behave in a way which improves the situation directly or indirectly however doesn't harm it at any cost. Ethics have been defined by relevant governmental and religious authorities for several domains of life however below article occupies 'blanket' coverage for all norms of life.
Below are top seven qualities of highly ethical people.

1-     They are Empathic: Ethical people have high degree of emotional intelligence. They understand things from multiple perspectives covering all the direct and indirect stake holders.. They seek first to understand than to be understood. They have strong observatory, listening and analytical skills to understand things deeply. This quality makes them unique which enables them to win the trust of others; consequently, people share their problems with them with open heart and seek their support.

2-    They Forgive and Forget: It requires a brave heart to forgive and forget. Ethical people don't keep grudges for long duration. They have the tendency to establish peace all the times hence keeping the brawls open does not suit them. They stay away from such complications and move ahead with life by forgiving and forgetting the matters.
3-    They are Always willing to Help: Highly Ethical people always want to improve the situation regardless of their relationship with a person who is in trouble. They take either corrective, preventive or suggestive initiatives for resolving issues. Corrective approach ensures that the matter is fixed by doing some specific actions. Preventive approach guarantees that such particular matters do not appear again. They use preventive approach to reach the root cause of the issue so as to fix it permanently so as to avoid further frequency of such incidents. Suggestive methodology is used by them for guiding someone to do some specific act in order to overcome a tragic situation.      

4-    They are Implosive: Ethical people are not hyper sensitive or explosive personalities. They possess a cool mind and a soft heart. They avoid frequent mood swings in order to develop a consistent and stable personality. They handle indecencies with decency. They know how to ignore hard and harsh comments and still converse softly. They know how to handle idiotic situations. They have high degree of anger management skills which further empowers their implosive personality trait.  
5-    They Mind Their Own Business: A lot of people have the habit of having serious curiosity about every other person's life. This habit causes them talk about people too much, spreading rumors and scattering false news in the society without any verification. Unlike those, ethical People do not interfere in others' lives unnecessarily; they mind their own business. Ethical people understand the fact the character assassination is equally a great sin so they don't give attention to rumors and focus on crystal clear matters; and avoid peeping into others' personal matters.

6-    They are Flexible & adaptable: The wise says, it is better to bend than to break. Ethical people possess a great deal of elasticity. They adapt themselves according to the situation. They don't stick to one mind set. Their continuous thought process enables them to change their minds easily in order to improve a situation without making it a matter of ego. They are not stubborn at all instead portray a flexible behavior in all kind of tough situations.
7-    They Do not criticize: Too much criticism is the root of several social and professional problems. Ethical people do not criticize at first place. In case they need to condemn or criticize something they follow a positive methodology to approach the relevant person and advice in a way which doesn't hurt anyone and convey the message in an effective way.

What are the other traits of highly effective people?


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Junaid Tahir, Project Manager and a blogger, writes articles on wisdom, happiness and stress management at his personal blog. He is reachable at mjunaidtahir @ -gmail -. com for suggestions and comments.
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Conscience - Your Great Companion


By Junaid Tahir:
Nature has awarded us
with such a great tool called conscience. 
It generates positive and negative signals for the actions you perform. 

When you buy food for the hungry with sincerity,
when you give some money to an orphan with love,
when you pay the education fee for a poor student, 
when you give some money to a free services hospital,
your conscience sends you a thank you signal and you feel good about yourself which gives birth to your 'inner' satisfaction.

It is said that you don't really achieve deep happiness by spending on yourself; you get it when you spend on others !!! And even you achieve greater degree of contentment when you spare your time from your busy life, visit any orphans or widows place, hospitals and other deserving people of society and then spend your money on them.


From religious perspective, I believe that almost all of the religions have defined the principle of spending on humanity in order to get tranquillity, serenity and prosperity. However, we the unfortunate people, the materialistic minds, keep calculating our money and assets several times a day which increases our greed level and eventually deprives us from peace of mind. It won't be wrong if I say that our extreme love for money and being materialistic is the real killer of our happiness.
To cope up with this, the wise people highly recommended to allocate a little portion (5% of your earnings) for the genuine causes. 

While the conscience claps for our good acts, it must generate red signals for our bad acts too. And if that is not happening then something is seriously wrong in our roots of faith. Considering the fact that a clean and active conscience is the best pillow, we must empower it by more positive acts as well as with daily self audits when our head is on the pillow at the end of each day.

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About Author: Junaid Tahir is a passionate blogger. He writes articles on Leadership, Stress Management and Life Enhancement subjects at his personal blog
 Follow me on Twitter  View my profile on LinkedIn  Like my page on Facebook  Read my articles on my personal blog  Subscribe to my Feed  Visit my Google+ Page

Stress Management - Feel Good Factors


By Junaid Tahir

Feel Good Factors (FGF) is a mental therapy which you can use in order to overcome your stress levels up to some extent. This is a technique in which you talk to yourself about the positive things which have happened in your past or currently happening.  You trigger the sense of "feeling good" about these blessings and achievements and train your brain to divert your focus towards the positive aspects of life instead of only thinking about crisis. You remind yourself that the more you do this self talk, the higher are the chances of reducing your stress levels because FGF and peace of mind are directly proportional to each other. 

When you are in stress, you might think that you don't have anything nice to feel good about. Wrong! In fact, you can use your positive mindset and easily find good things around you to feel good about regardless of your circumstances. Remember the fact that blessings in your life fall in several categories (Social, Professional, Financial, Mental, Physical, relational, educational, technical, vocal, recreational, possession of home/car/bike and so on). So, in case you lack in one category, does not mean you are in deep crisis. There are billions of people on earth living on a lower scale than you.

While you analyze your current problems and thinking about the possibilities to resolve them, you must spare some dedicated time for FGF therapy on daily basis. Remember the fact that when you are in stress, your thought process gets impacted and does not produce the best results hence the germs of negativity need to be killed by FGF technique. The more you practice FGF, higher degree of gratitude starts developing in your brain which will result in immediate positive impact on your mental, physical and spiritual health.


 

Check out the below beautiful stanza which you can start practicing starting today:

When your head is on the pillow 
and the day is almost done
Count God's blessings
Count them one by one.

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Analytical Thinking

Most Popular Interview Questions for Managers



By Junaid Tahir:
While reading an article on internet, I found the below questions which most of the hiring managers ask when hiring managers. In this article, the answers to the questions were not written by the author. In fact the reason for this was that these questions are generic and every professional would have different answers based on his own experience and expertise. Accordingly, I have given the answers to these questions below as a reference however I encourage you to write down your own answers for the sake of practice and training.

1-  Give me an example, from your past work experiences, about a time when you had an underperforming employee reporting to you. How did you address the situation? Did the employee's performance improve? If not, what did you do next?
ANSWER: In my previous role working as a national manager for a $45m project, one of my regional managers was not producing the desired results in stipulated timelines. Since I had made automatic reporting templates for progress monitoring so I extracted some specific cases where Mr ABC shown sluggish response. I called him for a one to one meeting in my room. It is said that in order to understand problems related to Humans you must have empathic skills so I took the same approach. He said that had recently a broken engagement due to which he was unable to focus on work. I offered him a week vacations but he thankfully didn't accept and promised to improve the results. I also registered him in online training "How to organize the work with WBS approach" After some weeks, I examined the progress and it was almost same. I called him again and he promised to improve. I offered him another 10 days, but to no avail. Then I discussed the matter with my manager (The director) and proposed him a  solution to introduce the environment of competence by splitting this region into two; half to be managed by him and half by me. From that day onwards, at the end of each day, both of us started reviewing our efforts to resolve the issues within our part of region. I used to explain to him how I managed things today and how I made things more productive. I followed the methodology that "the job of a manager is not to produce more followers but to produce more managers" and things got improved J

2-  Rate your management skills on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 representing excellent management skills. Provide three examples from your past work experiences that demonstrate your selected number is accurate
ANSWER: Well, self audit is a tough job as it requires serious judging skills. I would give myself 8 marks. I have good management skills as I can document things in an organized manner, I have a strong follow up to make things happen on time, I have analytical skills to breakdown a bigger problem into small problem and then resolving the issue, I have good excel Pivoting skills to see the trends. I read a lot to keep improving my horizons and I have written several articles on wisdom and  leadership traits. About examples, I have executed 2G cutover project involving 2000 plus activities at 1000 sites covering 5-10 teams (NOC, vendor, sub-contractor, planning, operations team coordination). In my 6 years tenure with XYZ company I was promoted 5 times from field engineer, to regional manager to National Implementation manager to Project Manager to PMO Professional which is an indicative of my good management qualities. I implemented two major phases of World's largest 4G network with my analytical, documentation, directive and follow up skills. I have been awarded two times Bravo Award by the companies' Asia PAC branch.

3-  Describe the work environment or culture and its management style in which you have experienced the most success.
ANSWER: well this one is a little challenging question, Ideally speaking the high density of your team members belonging to the same geographical region, the high is the success rate because of strong working chemistry synchronization. Just as an example, my manager sends me to the Operations team (another department) to resolve certain issues although those are not related to my region. He sends me because the guys in Operations belong to my country and they understand me better and support more efficiently J

4-  Describe three components of your philosophy of management that demonstrate what you value and add, as an individual, to an organization's culture and work environment.
ANSWER: 1- WBS 2- Time Management 3- Consistent Audits (Cost and quality). WBS ensures that tasks are broken down into small steps and each sub-task is assigned to a specific employee. Time Management ensures that things are done within stipulated timelines. Consistent audits ensure that you have grip on quality and cost.  

5-  What factors are crucial within an organization and must be present for you to work most effectively?
ANSWER: The teams should love what they are doing. Every morning if an employee while coming to office is enthusiastic and charged about the day, then he will make things happen. However if he is coming to office with sad heart or negative attitude then we have already half lost the project. So my point is that a culture of friendliness and trust needs to be ensured. Encouragement and consistent gratitude needs to be in place since it acts as a fuel and empowers the acceleration of the team and the project tasks.

6-  One of the jobs of a manager or supervisor is to manage performance and perform periodic performance reviews. Tell me how you have managed employee performance in the past. Describe the process you have used for performance feedback.
ANSWER: I have made templates for my current and for previous companies. These templates were made to measure the performance of teams at individual level. The template covers Technical Knowledge, Task completion, Response time, Flexibility, Eagerness to accept more job, Issue handling aspects of the professional. The measurement criteria was that whether employee demonstrate this skill rare, quite often, most of the time or always. Based on that new trainings in Company's online University were enrolled from the budget allocation of the project. My recent template is available at my personal blog and a lot of people from my online community has shown keen interest in using this template.

7-   If I were to interview the people who have reported to you in the past, how would they describe your management style?
ANSWER: well, the endorsement from my ex team members is available at my LinkedIn profile. In summary, In their opinion I am supportive, energetic, positive, solutions oriented, Optimistic, sincere and honest. All these qualities have been mentioned at my LinkedIn profile.
8-  If I were to interview your reporting staff members, how would they describe your strengths and weaknesses as a manager and supervisor?
ANSWER: The qualities are that I am detail oriented, organized and analyst. About weakness they would say that I do micro manage. Well, I confess that I do micro management, but I feel that by doing micro management I convey the message to my vendors that I am concerned about at low level details when it comes to addressing a problem so my vendor really needs to work hard to convince me about the delays and defects in their services.
Leadership Vision – A Critical Personality Trait for True Leaders

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