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Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Make the right choice

Joel Zeff’s book Make the Right Choice, has some great tips on making positive choices for your work life that also make your personal life more manageable. Here are some thoughts from his book:

On Multitasking
- Folding clothes and watching American Idol is a great multi-task. Checking email and talking to a client is not. When you try to do too much at once, nothing gets done right, leading to more time spent on projects fixing mistakes.

On Work-Life Balance
- If you’re running from meeting to meeting, to home, to craft store for child’s diorama, and then back to the office again, stop. Put a note on your monitor reminding you to take 5 minutes to think and prioritize tasks. Leave the cell phone at your desk and sit in a different environment, the lobby if necessary, so you can think without distractions.

On Negative Co-Workers
- Negativity can be contagious, so contain it. Try to engage a negative co-worker, and then leave them behind. Regroup with agreeable people in the office so projects can get done effectively.
- Sometimes a difficult co-worker is just a co-worker who communicates differently than you. Ever seen a chit chat person work with a down to business person? Find common ground and you’ll find peace around the office.

On Reducing Stress
- Take a few minutes and think about your last week at work. Make a list of everything that made you frustrated, impatient and stressed, and try to read it with a straight face. I will wager most of it is insignificant. Don’t waste creative energy on things that are completely out of your control.

On Opportunity
Ask for it, demand it, then take it. People can’t give you what they don’t know you want. If you’re a manager, ask your employees if they’re getting the opportunities they’re looking for. Watch their productivity go up when they see you appreciate them.

Zeff is a working dad and national workplace expert. To read more about his book:


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds interesting. I'll have to check it out.

Sometimes all of these tips can boil down to one thing: understanding opportunity costs: In order to gain something, you must lose something else.

Learning to make better choices involves looking beyond immediate perceived value and instead quantifying the cost of every opportunity you’re faced with.

I try to remember this - often.

9:12 PM  

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