8 Traits of Toxic People…

Never tolerate a toxic person in your organization.~Peter Diamandis

Toxic  is a strong word which means pertaining to, affected with, or caused by a toxin, or poison. That is the meaning attributed to the word. Sad when it is used to describe an individual’s behavior. But truth be told, there are many who act like Radiant toxins that poison our careers, dreams, goals, and aspirations. Year in year out, time and again they poison our ability to succeed. Yet why do so many choose to stick around such people? Toxic people are offensive, and people hate being around them.

So in order to succeed, we must get away from them. It is difficult when you work directly with such individuals, but when you choose them as your ‘Generous‘ friends, it’s a sure recipe for disaster.

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Traits of Toxic People

Selected here are eight (8) of the characteristics described by Dr. Lillian Glass, Expert in Human Behavior. As alluded, if you see yourself in any of the traits, don’t Panic! Simply recognize the trait(s) and start the process to do something about it.  But first, brace yourselves and let’s try to understand the various characteristics.

  1. The Cut-You-Downer is arrogant, mean, belittling, bitchy, hateful, self-righteous, condescending, threatened, superior, insecure, offensive, critical, sarcastic, disrespectful, underhanded, and fault-finding. They have little self-esteem and will find fault with you and with everyone else. They love to belittle, taunt, ridicule, others. They cut others down so they can build themselves up.
  2. The Self-Destroyer is victim-like, unrealistic, weak, unstable, sabotaging, rejecting, negative, threatened, selfish, lifeless, desperate, unappreciative, depressed, defiant, rebellious, and out of control. They hate themselves so much that they constantly tear themselves down and harp on what’s wrong with them, while berating themselves. They usually say things like “I’m so stupid”; “that was dumb of me”; or “I’m the worst.” In essence, self-destroyers try to cut themselves down before anyone else has a chance to do it. They hardly ever accept compliments and will negate any nice or kind words that come their way. They can be so full of self-loathing that they will become alcoholics, foodaholics, drug abusers, etc. Essentially self-destroyers don’t think they are worthy of good things or deserve anything positive in life.
  3. The Gossip is indiscreet, insecure, fault-finding, false, belittling, quick to place blame, brazen, hypocritical, competitive, hurtful, self-righteous, shallow, sharp-tongued, skeptical, sneaky, imposing, adversarial, conspiratorial, critical, disloyal, meddling, mean-spirited, offensive, and angry. The gossip loves to spread stories even embellish them, and may invent stories of his or her own. The gossip is usually a nosy person whose biggest pleasure is telling you about someone else’s misfortunes. He might find pleasure in telling stories about others. Gossips generally have very little going on in their own lives. So they want to be accepted and to feel important so they bring you the latest news (real or imagined).
  4. The Gloom and Doom Victim is masochistic, guilt-ridden, worrisome, sabotaging, resentful, rigid, selfish, rejecting, sad, negative, petty, fault-finding, paranoid, stubborn, whiny, weak, defeatist, unimaginative, self-destructive, fearful, solemn, cowardly, depressed, skeptical, unappreciative, suspicious, lifeless, lethargic, lackadaisical, defensive, and depressed. Gloom and Doom victims are depressing to be around. Their energy really zaps you as they tell you how horrible life is, has been, and will be for them. They aim to make you feel sorry for them, but they have no interest in any advice you offer. Their preference is to wallow in self-pity, certain that the world has done them in and everybody has done them wrong. Nothing ever goes right for them. Maybe it’s because their glass is always half empty rather than half full. They blame everyone but themselves when anything goes wrong in their lives.
  5. The opportunistic User is selfish, interfering, manipulative, back-stabbing, brown-nosing, secretive, indirect, disloyal, conspiratorial, dishonest, sneaky, unappreciative, underhanded, tenacious and seductive. Opportunistic users are out for themselves alone. They are fair weather friends who want you in their life only when it is convenient for them—when they can benefit. These people will do anything to get ahead. If they can benefit from someone or have benefited all they can, they discard the person like a used paper towel, without a second thought.
  6. The Me, Myself, and I Narcissist is selfish, egomaniacal, lacking in self-confidence, shallow, insecure, arrogant, boring, limited, socially inept, exhausting, obnoxious, flamboyant, self-centered, indiscreet, and a show-off. They have only one thing in mind—themselves. They are the most self-centered individuals anyone can encounter. They don’t want to talk about or do anything unless it pertains to them. They want to hear about your issues only if it affects them. Their vocabularies are filled with the words “me”, “myself”, and “I”. Trying to have a conversation with a narcissist can be the most frustrating experience you will ever have, because they speak a monologue instead of a give-and-take dialogue.
  7. The Competitor is provocative, fearless, fanatical, obnoxious, paranoid, offensive, pushy, aggressive, resentful, sabotaging, conniving, intense, intimated, defensive, confrontational, threatened, untrustworthy, negative, insecure, argumentative, and always looking for a fight. Competitors seek every opportunity to outwit or surpass others. Everything is a competition from getting a job to getting a boyfriend or girlfriend, husband or wife. Competitors tend to be show-offs and braggarts who gloat about their achievements—both past and present. They constantly try to impress you with how much better they are than you. In essence they have such low self-esteem that the only way they can relate to you is by turning everything into a contest.
  8. The Control Freak is invasive, sabotaging, rigid, manipulative, arrogant, aggressive, forceful, backstabbing, self-righteous, meddlesome, confrontational, inflexible, egotistical, obstinate, pushy, unreasonable, stubborn, selfish, unaware, threatened, disrespectful, uncommunicative, and stubborn. Control freaks can never let go. Like bullies, they are immobilized if not in control. However, unlike bullies, they don’t always use anger or meanness to get what they want. Control freaks often use sweet talk and manipulation. They are not team players and have difficulty delegating authority, as they try to do everything themselves. If things don’t go their way, they get angry or lose interest, for they feel they must always be in charge. Their lives are filled with frustration and disappointment and never go with the flow. Instead, they force things to happen and when things don’t go their rigid way they panic and become angry or more manipulative.

Did any of these traits remind you of someone you knew? If so what effect has it had on your success? Maybe it’s time for a change.

Need help? Lets connect.

Cheers!

When Time Stands Still: Move…

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It’s Definitely a Tough Blow to be Fired

A colleague received a call that her mom had to undergo emergency surgery due to an injury. By the time she got to the hospital, the leg had to be removed. Naturally, this was a Shock as her life was immediately turned upside down. She had no choice but to voluntarily resign from her position to be by her mom’s side. She had to be there to assist in any way she could. That was her voluntary decision.

You may not have had the choice. Things happen. You lose your job because of restructuring, organization change, personal issues, and more. All involuntarily. You’re sad. Filled with remorse, and totally depressed.

Don’t get stuck. Take hold of your situation and learn the strategies to:

  • Rebuild your Public Profile (Resume, LinkedIn, etc)
  • Develop a Success Mindset
  • Match The Right Job for you
  • Learn Search Strategies

When life throws you lemons, make lemonade. That’s the saying, and its true. When things stand still…move. Do what you can to get back on your feet. It’s called life…things happen. Don’t let it get you down. Get the courage, the strength. Force yourself to stand up and do something about it.

Need help? Let’s Connect!

Cheers!

15 Ways To Ask For a Raise…

No, don’t do it by email.

George approached his manager asking for a raise. Said he had been with the company for years and was in dire need, unable to meet his personal expenses.  He just had a child and threatened that he would resign if it was received.

Sounds familiar? At times many find themselves searching for that Loophole to earn extra cash to supplement their disposable income to do the things you would like to do. Things such as get married; buy your first place; get a larger home for your new and growing family; or simply to getaway on that dream vacation.

But accomplishing these goals is not as easy as most would like. It is then that creativity jumps in as I shared in a recent article on 20 Ways to Earn Extra Income. In that article I promised to share the how to ask your boss for a raise (yikes!). But while this method of increasing your income is upfront, and center (basically right under your nose), it’s not the easiest for us to do. We get nervous, shake, get angry, scared, have sleepless nights, all in our efforts to come up with the most plausible reason why we deserve the salary/rate increase .

15 Ways To Ask For A Raise

Having managed Human Resources internationally for over two decades dealing with issues like this, I’ll share a few pointers on how to do it ‘right‘. How to Evoke the response that will not remain Static with your employer, boss, supervisor–whichever pertains to you.

Here I share:

  1. Prepare yourself for the ask.
  2. Timing is everything.
  3. Consider your company’s policy on salary reviews.
  4. Evaluate the financial situation of your employer.
  5. Take on more responsibility.
  6. Demonstrate your wins, and added values
  7. Share your goals and ask for feedback
  8. Request a face to face meeting. If you’re in a different location, use your internal communication channel. Whatever you do, don’t do the initial ask by email.
  9. Focus on the ‘why‘ not the ‘need’. Why you deserve the increase (not why you need it)
  10. Practice your pitch and anticipate questions
  11. Don’t use other colleagues as your argument (he/she received an increase and so should you). That’s the worse thing you can do.
  12. Don’t discuss workload
  13. Do your research…know what the market pays
  14. No, no, no. Be prepared to hear no. It happens. Decide to ask for other things such as bonus, incentives, or personal development opportunities. Be confident that once you’ve asked, you’ve taken that giant step and the request stays in your boss’ mind.
  15. Never threaten that you will resign.

Still afraid? Have questions? Let’s connect

Cheers!

Job Loss: When Everything Stops…

When he was fired he not only lost his job, he lost his mind.

The quoted statement is so true of many who have suffered job loss. Society’s perils and pleasure encourages many to link the meaning of life as the very grain of their existence. Too often it is indeed so. Jobs provide a means of livelihood. At the lower level, some provide the basics of food, shelter, and such essentials of life’s needs. Higher paying jobs provide for higher needs that often includes fame, fortune, and all the flashy stuff that make those who hold them the envy of society. But oh the stress and strain caused when blindsided by sudden job loss.

Survive: Get Over the Hump

What can we do if we fall prey to such occurrence? Here I share a few strategies:

  • Allow yourself to mourn the loss. Cry if you must. It’s good therapy.
  • After your period of mourning, face the truth that the situation is for real, and it’s time to move on.
  • Take hold of your life. Reflect on where you are now. Then reflect on your next steps and what you can do about your situation.
  • Hopefully, you had saved for rainy days like this. It is suggested that you have 3-6 months savings to help you ride the waves until you get another job.
  • Start searching for a new opportunity.
  • Assess your skills to meet the changes in the market. Are you skilled in another area that you did not even think of?
  • How is your resume? Your social profile? Do they depict the message you want to send?
  • Connect with your network who can refer you  to new opportunities
  • Treat your job search like a job. Know that it takes time.

If you can’t get pass the hurt and pain, read Stuck: The 5 Signs…

Don’t go it alone. If you need help, let’s connect.

Cheers!

The Holidays Arrgh Here! How To Handle Employee Time Off Requests…

I️ received a call with an enquiry about the holidays, and time off. No doubt a pain for employers and an avid desire for team…

I️ received a call from a business owner about time off during the holidays. “Everyone wants to take time off at the same time. What’s the best way to handle this during the holidays?” she Dubiously asked.

Time off during the holidays can be a Riff issue for employers, and an emotional desire for team members. Employers fear absence will impact business results. Meeting the demand often prove overwhelming for small business owners who operate in the hospitality, retail, and other industries that service holiday needs.

On the other hand, employees wish to spend time with family, especially those visiting from out-of-town. Let’s not forget the busy preparations  involved, amidst the hustle and bustle of the holidays.

So how can we balance the two? You don’t have to be mean about it. I concur with Kim Scott’s recommendation on the topic. Here’s my take on the issue.

  1. The Balancing Act. Try the trade-off. Employees know the drill. Share holiday coverage needs and let them work it out amongst themselves. Only step-in if you absolutely must.
  2. Comp days. Give them half/full day off at less demanding times. You will find this works very well, and shows compassion to those who must work.
  3. Flex-Basket. Try a flex-basket of Goodies from which they can choose. This would include a selection of delights such as lunch, dinner, drinks, partnership with vendors for relaxation/rejuvenation  goodies (e.g. mani/pedi, movie tickets, etc.). Believe me, this works wonders.

So there you have it! Three simple tips that will bring delight to your team, and smooth your business over the stressful holidays.

Noticed anything missing that you would add to best manage this issue during the holidays? Do share!

Cheers!

Captiva’s Breathtaking Getaway…

Longing for a Quick Getaway? The Beauty and Serenity of Captiva Island, Florida provides just that. As you drive along the coastline you start to feel the Stress of the daily grind slip away.

Don’t Succumb. Take a Break from your busy schedule and join us at this Exciting Retreat at the South Seas Island Resort, on November 3rd, and let your 2018 Goals Ascend.

Cheers!

Attrition’s Rat Race: Fact or Fiction?

Attrition is Obsolete! Often so many still considered this as a mark of the good. Even me! Why?….

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) shared an article by Daniel Sonsino titled Attrition is Obsolete.  In it he discussed the very necessary topic of attrition. Often so many still consider this as a mark of the good. Even me! Why? Because in my capacity as head of Human Resources for a major international pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, boasted of less than 5 percent turnover for years! Wow! What an achievement!

Not so today. Workers in today’s workforce are the least bit Tame. They are restless and not Cloaked as Sinsono argued in the following points:

  • People are changing jobs more frequently. staying with a job from lifetime, then over 4 years, to now less than 3 years.
  • Millennials are restless. Over 60 percent are open to new job opportunities
  • Employment relationships are changing. 40 percent of the U.S. workforce is made up of continent workers including temps, self-employed, and part-timers
  • Talent is in charge. People have more career options and leverage.

Reducing Attrition: What to do?

Reducing attrition rates is like keeping ice solid in the hot sun…it’s futile. People leave for reasons including spouse’s new job, family care-giving responsibilities, or lower cost of living.

Sonsino suggested that employers focus on:

  • Accepting that you will not retain all your employees
  • Focus your efforts on the employees who are most important to retain (i.e. those with the knowledge, skills and abilities critical to your business).
  • Build an alumni network so you can keep track of those who leave. Attract them back when the time is right.
  • Revise HR policies that make it harder for former workers to return. Welcome back boomerang employees with potentially continued vacation, stock options etc.
  • Establish shared accountability. Partner with other executives and when employees leave, counter with an offer letter good for up to 2 years in the future.
  • Devise a workforce composition strategy. Devise programs to attract to full-time status those contingent workers critical to your business. In exchange, also do the reverse.  Move some full-time workers, to contingent worker status.

Does the above bring  an Exceptional level of curiosity and discomfort to your business? Indeed it is cause for concern. If you need help with shifting up your workforce, consider an external partner. It will be worth it.

Cheers!

Focus…

Work, Sleep, Family, Fitness, or Friends: Pick 3.
Personally, I am a recovering workaholic…

Work, Sleep, Family, Fitness, or Friends: Pick 3.

The online Mega media Inc. recently posted this Question. Thought I’d share for our reflection to find out what we are Focused on. Personally, I am a recovering workaholic. It’s argued that if entrepreneurs and career high achievers are honest with themselves, the rest of life tends to get pushed out of balance.  The challenge is to focus on what’s important. Building a business, family, taking care of our health, or connecting.

Over to you. reflect, retreat then share your thoughts. Be honest. Can’t wait to hear!

Cheers!

Take This Job And …

HLN’s Carol Costello in her interview with a representative, clarified his statement that he was resigning right there and then… on The Across America National TV program. As she probed, he confirmed his decision that he was resigning effective immediately. Did he submit a written resignation? He replied that he had not, and did not intend to do so. The interview was his way of saying Take this Job and Shove it.

Is that form of resignation acceptable? It sure is. I have seen resignations done in numerous forms ranging from a hilarios post-it note on a supervisor’s desk, the flight attendant who resigned on-flight, to the news reporter who resigned while delivering her report. And of course, let’s not forget the usual acceptable form to Elevate notice… in writing.

But before you jump to do the same, there are things to be considered. I am certain that the representative that was being interviewed live, had given some thought to his decision before. We were just not privy to it. Undoubtedly, there are many who have turned in their resignations with immediate effect without thinking about it. The next step was filled with regrets and excuses about being emotional and angry. As an HR practitioner for many years, I have had my share of employees who have acted in the heat of the moment, then later we had to work together to clean up.

Resignation: A Few Tidbits

Think before you act. You’re frustrated. Yes it’s understood. But are you adequately prepared for the next step in your career?  Do you have up to 3-6 months savings to cover your bills while you job hunt or decide on the next step? How is your public profile? When employers conduct a research, what will they find? Educate yourself on life after your frustrating job.

If you experience that negative feeling in your gut in your attempt to answer these questions, let’s connect. I will help you decide on the process to get out of your comfort zone to do what you always wanted to do.

Remember, Consult with me before you act!

Cheers!