Archive | August 2013

DEALING WITH BOSS BULLIES….

marilyn anona

marilyn anona

While i was growing up, i was so used to the word BULLY. The bigger kids in school snatching your snacks from you. The ones who mocked me about being a left handed person. The ones that pulled my hair. The ones that compelled you to wash their clothes or fetch them water etc. Now as an adult, all these should be behind me right? I know you think so too. Sadly, most bullies don’t grow out of whatever it is that compels them to pick on others, and when they graduate from the school, they move on to the office, the work place etc. And if you are so unfortunate, they become your boss or superior. Dealing with a bully who is your mate, peer etc, someone who your success or progress isn’t directly linked to is much more easier. But when you are dealing with a bully who is not your peer or playmate, but the person you report to every day, the person you look up to for direction, your superior etc, things get complicated. Here are what you need to know about handling these bullies…. RECORD EVERYTHING: Record every conversation, text, every slight, every email. Your allegations need proof, and this documentation will come in handy should you ever need to go to HR or be the victim of wrongful firing. This is a lot easier these days with smart phones. Save all emails and memos, especially those where you believe your boss to be particularly unfair or unprofessional. And if your boss bullies you verbally, send him an email outlining the conversation. If he called you a name, try saying, “In our discussion this afternoon, you said I was being a crybaby. I would like to stop the behavior you find offensive, so if you could tell me specifically how you would like me to improve, I would greatly appreciate it.” If you feel this is too confrontational, then simply send an email to yourself for your own records.   TRY HAVING A NON-CONFRONTATIONAL CONVERSATION: If your boss’s behavior is affecting your self-esteem and ability to perform, express your discomfort in a private conversation held in a neutral setting. Go out for coffee, use words like “When you say X, it makes me feel [uncomfortable, like I’m being attacked, like you want for me to take this personally]” and then document that conversation. This is may be the hardest suggestion to take, especially if your boss has habitually humiliated you. But if you can keep from accusing him, and frame your argument objectively, you have a greater chance of success. The most important thing to remember here is that your boss’s behavior may not be intentional. If you go into the conversation under the assumption that he is simply unaware of how his comments are affecting you, you will naturally be less combative.   CONTACT HUMAN CAPITAL MANAGEMENT: If your boss blows off your concerns, or if his behavior doesn’t improve, then you need to alert HR. Put your documentation into a nice little (or large) organized package and ask your assigned HR representative for a meeting in person. During the conversation, outline your boss’s behavior as objectively as possible, stating when the inappropriate behavior started. Before the conversation ends, ask about the next steps, then send an email that outlines the meeting. CONTRACT AN EMPLOYMENT ATTORNEY: This should be your last resort but if your boss’s behavior continues even after you contact HR (or if HR fails to do anything to address the harassment), you should contact an attorney to look at your documentation and explain your options.  Excelling in your career is difficult enough without bullies standing in your way, but do know that they aren’t insurmountable problems. You can be an effective team member even if your boss doesn’t recognize your efforts; you can neutralize a toxic attitude by changing yours and you can combat chauvinism, sexism, and all-out humiliation by standing up for yourself (and calling for backup when needed). Bullying of any sort by superiors and bosses should not be condoned. When you are bullied, stand up and speak. A lot of people have given up on their dreams because of obstacles and hurdles posed by the so called bosses and superiors. Please allow the young to grow. Stop bullying us. Be Enlightened! Be inspired!! Be Motivated.

“Authentic values are those by which a life can be lived, which can form a people that produces great deeds and thoughts” Allan Bloom

Values seem “soft”. Yet values are the critical foundation for any individual, team, or organization to truly achieve sustainable and meaningful success.

Yes! we talk of our values and we put words to represent our values on a plaque, we do not work with our values. We procrastinate with decisions, we hesitate on actions, and we have trouble with relationships. Our challenges relate back to our values. When we do not work with our values, we do not achieve our best. With clear values, we have a path for our best decisions, our greatest results, and our most enduring relationships. Values are the guide to navigate the path to achieving what is most important to us.

 

So, what are values and how to we bring them to our work.

 

Warren Buffet put is quite simply as “value is what you get”. Values are described as the relative worth, merit, or importance of something. Values are defined as meaning and significance. Values are also listed as principles that are considered worthwhile. The origin of the word values dates back to 1303 meaning to be “of worth”.

 

We see values as the principles and standards that guide our actions and thinking. Your values drive your decisions, your commitments, and your initiative. Values are the core beliefs that guide us to take action – or not to take action. We take action when the direction in front of us fits our values – when it doesn’t we procrastinate, delay, and defer. If we act outside of our values, we fall out of integrity and we fall behind.

 

Values define our core being – who we really are. Our values have roots in our past and can change with the context of our lives (when we marry and have a family our values may change somewhat from our single days). However, for most of us, our core values stay with us over our entire life. Being true to our values can bring us our greatest meaning whereas being off of our values can bring our worst conflicts and stress. Our values determine our integrity.

 

Your values show up in your life in seven major areas – what you want most, what you think about most, how you use your money, what you do with your free time, whose company you enjoy, who you admire, and what makes you laugh.

 

As the pace of change and complexity accelerates in our world, strong values are necessary to be successful.

When you are making decisions,  the best route open to you will the one that is a match and fit for your values (or at least some of your values). If you are faced with decisions that go against your values – even unknowingly – you will feel something in your stomach. You are uneasy about the decision and may procrastinate and hesitate. Something doesn’t feel quite right. With clear values in front of you, you can quickly test your decision against your values to see if there is a fit and if you will be comfortable and committed going forward.

 

We can set goals that make logical sense but we still don’t move forward on them. Generally, when we don’t work towards goals, the reason is that the goal and the results don’t fit our values. When we are setting our goals, we need to assess the fit of the outcome to our values. If there is a fit between the goal and our values, we will commit ourselves and make it happen. When the fit is not there, it is just another item on our “to-do” list that will keep moving down the list. 

 

One reason teams may not be able to work at their best to support the strategy is that the values of the organization or the strategy do not match any of their values. We strongly believe that for an employee to succeed at their role in an organization there needs to be a match between some of the values of the organization (the culture) and those of the individual.

 

Even our relationships work – or don’t work – based on our values. Can you follow a leader when you don’t respect them and their values? No. Can you have a meaningful and rewarding relationship with someone where you don’t agree with their values? Probably not. Being aware of your values and the values of the people around you is critical to building successful relationships.

 

Values are at the root of who we are and how we achieve and lead. Without clear values, people will not accept you as a leader. When you do not live your values, you will not lead. Lacking values or not following your values will not bring meaningful success or significance.

The first step is to identify your core values. We generally see people having six to seven values that are most meaningful to them and form the foundation of their decisions, goals, and relationships. There are intrinsic values that are those most compelling principles that stay with you for your entire life. Intrinsic values are rooted in your upbringing, your family, your community and define what your character. Extrinsic values are those that are formed over our lifetime and may change based on where we are – they are our reaction to the world. We typically have two or three intrinsic values and a similar number of extrinsic values.

 

Finding the words to represent your values is wonderful but the true benefit results from our own personal definition of the word. When we describe what a specific value means to us, we can communicate and use it much easier. Words on a plaque are not enough. Leaders talk about their organization’s values and list off the words but employees still do not always live the values. To live the value, we need to have a description of what the behavior of that value looks like. That description will guide your own personal achievement as well as what is important about others to you.

 

DRESSING TO SUIT YOUR FIGURE… (The excellent dresser)

This piece is for the females. What I see daily all in the name of trying to look good is really appalling. Most people especially ladies think that all there is to looking good is buying the trending and most expensive clothe in the market. But no! There is more to dressing good, looking posh than always shopping and buying clothes. You can have the latest clothes, the most expensive clothes and still be a horrible dresser when you don’t wear clothes that compliment and flatter your figure and size. Knowing your body shape is the key to successful dressing, no matter what trends or fashion fads are happening. And this is what most women do not know about. They neglect this very important factor thereby making a mess of themselves. The key is knowing your body type and dressing to suit it. Stick to the rules and you will never be stuck for something to wear again and you will always make a great public appearance with little effort. We have various body shapes, hour glass, apple, straight, pear etc. It’s so fun to try all the super-trendy fashions out there, but it’s easy to end up wearing the totally wrong thing for you. Here’s how to find pieces that flatter your shape! What type of body do you have? One way to define a woman’s body type is by how her curves connect her bust, waist, and hips. No matter what your body type, making your legs look longer is generally flattering.

                                                                          THE APPLE SHAPE: You have a heavy top. 14 percent of women have this figure. Bust is three or more inches bigger than hips. If you have this body type, you probably want to emphasize your tight legs and butt, draw attention away from your waist and shoulders/arms (wear long sleeves), and draw attention to your bust and neck (e.g. v-necks). Wear tops that “drape” over any love handles, like tunics and flowy tops with an empire waist (the waist begins just below the bust and flows outwards). Choose flared pants over straight-leg or skinny pants. It adds more “shape” to your body and it helps balance out wide shoulders and/or a heavy upper body. Stock up on miniskirts and bright tights to make the most of your great legs. you probably have an ample bust; your main concern should be to wear a supportive bra so that your chest looks perky, not droopy. Book yourself a professional bra fitting; it’s life-changing and will make your chest look fantastic! Stock up on V-neck dresses and tops – they’re super flattering on big-busted girls. If you don’t want to draw attention to your chest, stay away from necklaces and wear chunky bangles instead. You should also wear plain colours around your bust and go for patterned and colourful bottoms instead. Examples of women with this figure are Ngozi Ezeonu, Uche Ogbodo, Tonto Dike. THE STRAIGHT/RECTANGULAR SHAPE: 46 percent of women have this figure type. The waist is about the same as hips and waist, more like a cylinder or just a slight demarcation. if you have this body type, you can “pinch” your waist and exaggerate curves to avoid looking lanky or boyish. Go for ruffles and frills to add texture and volume (and femininity) to your figure. Steer clear of baggy jeans and track clothes if you don’t want to look boyish. Examples here are Yvonne Nelson, Oge Okoye. If you have a straight shape, draw attention to your waist with belts and dresses that pinch at the mid-section. This is a must because it will create the illusion of curves. THE PEAR SHAPE: Bottom is heavy. 20 percent of women have this figure. Hips significantly larger than bust. If this is your body type, there are things you can do to make your hips and butt look slimmer, but some women might want to make their butts bigger! Wear straight-leg or slightly flared pants with heels. Skinny pants that hug your ankles can make your lower body take on the appearance of an upside-down triangle. Flared pants can make your legs look very thick, perhaps bowl-legged, in comparison to your upper body. Wear clothes with patterns that go down your body (especially your legs) and not across. 

Wear clothes with patterns Examples here are Omotola Ekeinde. 

THE HOURGLASS SHAPE: 8 percent of women have this figure type. Equal hip and bust measurements with a narrow waist. If you are one of the lucky few with this body type, dress to flatter not flatten your beautiful curves. you probably have an ample bust; your main concern should be to wear a supportive bra so that your chest looks perky, not droopy. Book yourself a professional bra fitting; it’s life-changing and will make your chest look fantastic! Stock up on V-neck dresses and tops – they’re super flattering on big-busted girls. If you don’t want to draw attention to your chest, stay away from necklaces and wear chunky bangles instead. Example here is Mercy Johnson. There are general rules to dressing good. Choose your colors and patterns wisely. If there are any curves, handles, or lumps that you’d prefer to hide, wear solid dark colors (black, navy, dark purple) over them. Wear bright colors or patterns on your hot spots to draw attention away from your trouble spots!

Draw attention away from unwanted curves by enhancing a feature that is further away or you can cover it with dark colors. Above all, the most important is to be comfortable. Wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident. Make sure that your clothes fit properly. Clothes that are too tight or too big will not necessarily make you look better. 

Remember, just because you have an hour-glass figure doesn’t mean you have to wear clothes that make you blush. If a neckline is too deep, or if a hemline is too short, leave those clothes on the rack. With these simple rules, you can never go wrong. Please dress right! Dress to flatter! Be Enlightened! Be Motivated!! Be Inspired!!!

 

INDECENT DRESSING

INDECENT DRESSING: A decent dressing, of course, is part of human life, because it elicits respect and protects the person’s dignity. While the antonym which is indecent dressing is a social malady that ridicules the person and is likely to shock or irritate people. It exposes parts of the body, usually sexual organs, which normally should be covered. Decent dressing by students/ working class/ celebrities etc attracts respect from lecturers, guards, classmates, boss, colleagues, fans etc and most importantly can go a long way to protect you from being the target of rape, sexual harrassment and scandal. Indecent dressing has adverse effect on a person; it brings hatred, disrespect from people. Good dressing is good business. For example, most victims of rape on campus are indecent dressers, they are seductive. This habit is traceable to all age groups in the society, but common among the youth. In Nigeria, most ladies are exposed to western culture through television and the social media. Most celebrities wear tattered jeans with holes and tight fitting shirts. Some even wear pants while on stage. Unfortunately, this lures under-aged children to engage in early sex. Over-exposure to popular culture through various media is the main reason for the menace of indecent dressing. If you go to the campuses of institutions of higher learning you will be astonished by the mode of dressing by students. That is why some universities have a sort of dress code now for their students in order to curb this problem. Most ladies appear half naked all in the name of fashion. Some wear mini-skirts while others wear tight jeans, small tight tops, some even wear tops as gowns exposing their body purposely and I keep asking the essence. The basis of dressing historically started from the Garden of Eden where Adam and Eve used leaves to cover their nakedness; from that time, dressing became part of human beings. The Holy Qur’an also stipulates “tell the believers to lower their gaze and guide their modesty”. This indicates that dressing is part of our life as both Christianity and Islam prescribe how to dress. One must be mindful of dressing because your dressing determines who you are; where you are from and how responsible you are. You must dress in a respectful manner. There is a popular saying *DON’T JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER* then I got a response for this saying when I watched desperate houswives. Susan Mayer told her daughter, you will judge that book if it has holes on its cover… Similarly, the issue of indecent dressing includes guys. You will see a guy looking really funny. Putting on an undersized and very tight penciled jeans and pairing it up with a tee-shirt made for a four year old for the sake of fashion. We should really look into this issue because it is getting worse by the day. Its even a shame when you see the so called celebrities and socialites dressing so indecently… They seem not to know that they are role models to people and as such can influence a lot of people with the things they do including dressing. Parents also have roles to pay, train up your kids properly. Inculcate values in them. Let them know what is good and what is bad. Make them understand that, that which they see as beautiful may not be or is not beautiful. There are certain training that once given to a child can never be erased or influenced by society. Yes, I said so because, we all watch the same television but we all still don’t copy what we see there. If we want to blame it all on the media, why is it that we choose to copy the bad instead of the good? Let’s try and find ways to curb this ugly trend! Let the schools have a law that students should not be caught wearing some kind of clothes. Let the movie/music producer find the right costumes for the artistes except of course the person is playing the role of a prostitute. We are tired of seeing naked ladies in every music video. Let employers have a dress code for their organizations. Let parents watch their kids. Its has to be a concerted effort for us to effect a change. Be Inspired! Be Motivated!! Be Enlightened!!!

SAY NO TO INDECENT DRESSING!!!

SAY NO TO INDECENT DRESSING!!!