Archive for the ‘Learning and Education’ category

5 Ways You Can Gain A New Perspective Of Life

May 31, 2009

These few weeks have been extremely packed with the training workshops and coaching. These trainings range from Anger Management to Counselling and Leadership Management Skills, tapping on the different aspects of human behaviour and capacities.

 

In addition, what I truly like are the experiences I’ve encountered and the new friends I’ve gotten to know, be it at the workshops or the social gatherings. It does speak of the need to see the world beyond what our personal perspectives can offer.

 

In the midst of us being in pursue of whatever we hope for in life, I’m just wondering how often do we take time to smell the roses, stopping by the tracks to appreciate what we might have missed.

 

To look at life in another way, consider these:

 

1. Stop being busy for the sake of being busy. Start re-evaluating the reasons why you work at what you are currently working at and the ultimate purpose behind it.

 

2. Speak to someone whom you consider to be in a much worse off condition than you. You’ll discover how much difference in lifestyle there can be.

 

3. Attempt to perform a regular task in an irregular way. For example, take a different route on your way to work or to school. Discover the things you don’t usually see along the way.

 

4. Read an article that is usually outside your common area of interest. If you’re into baking and cooking, why not explore a book about the Milky Way of the galaxy and see if there’s any ‘correlation’ that you may derive out of it. You’ll be surprised how creative your mind can get.

 

5. Mediate your mind and reduce the pace of your living. Allow relaxation to handle your life’s demands. Not everything must be done in a panicky, hurried manner.

 

These exercises hence form an essential part of our growth and development as a citizen of the world. It becomes a beginning foray into what might be beyond the mere hustles and bustles of mere busyness. Or perhaps it may give you a new meaning to what life and living is all about…

 

At the very least, it sets you on the path to Excel Beyond Excellence.

(Source: wekie.com)

6 Proven Methods To Make A Dry Training Session Come Alive

April 4, 2009

There are times whereby you have to conduct trainings that are highly technical, theoretical or academic-based. To a trainer, one of the first few considerations in such seminars include how to work with the participants without losing their attention or having them dozing off. A challenge worth taking on indeed.

As the training engagements came in, I’ve encountered the different training subjects that provided varying levels of complexity. Not only is one limited by training time, there are also a number of constraints that affect the outcome and quality of the training. When the topics demand such rigorous examination, the audience interaction may need to be better planned and balanced. One must create some ways to make the training come alive and with vibrancy.

Hence, here are some quick tips I can offer you when you are faced with dry training sessions:

1. Address the WIIFM: What’s In It for Me. Make them accept and understand the importance of your topic to their work.

2. Share captivating personal examples and stories. This will make them sit up and listen to you instead of just being focus on the bullet points. For example, when you point out a concept, share the stories after that on how you applied the concepts.

3. Make your PowerPoint slides interesting to view. You can use graphics and filling it with colors. Test out your PowerPoint to ensure they get the point across yet can be interesting to look at. (This is mostly applicable for dry topics. For soft skills, it must be to tone it down instead.)

4. Keep the information simple unless this is a full academic course requiring close examination, keep the concepts easy on the ear and just highlight the major points. The details can be read by them in the notes. It’s not that you are under performing, it’s that human mind cannot take in so much deep information at one go. If you must go heavy, may sure you spread out the deep academic contents through the trainings.

5. Energizers are also useful whenever you see the energy and enthusiasm dipping. They can go beyond mere clips and can include mini exercises such as head rotation and arm stretching.

6. Vary your tone, body language and delivery to keep the audience glued to your “performance”. Grab their attention with jokes, quizzes and mini-rewards if you wish. Let them know you are the ‘star of the moment’.

(Source: wekie.com)

How You Can Master The Art Of Training

March 30, 2009

This year has been extremely amazing, the trainings contract and speaking engagement have been coming in much more and faster than before. These few weeks continuously saw the training sessions lined up one after another. Thus, it provided me plenty of great opportunities to interact with so many people. I thank them ever so sincerely for the chance to share with them. It has made my work as a trainer and public speaker so worthwhile.

Throughout life, we seek improvement and progress. In order to attain greater advancement, we acquire attitudes, skills, techniques and strategies that will propel us towards our dreams. And behind the scene, within every lesson and workshop that you attend, is the person who ensures that you gain such competency, the Trainer.

When I was conducting the workshop, Train-The-Trainer, for a major government institution a few weeks ago, I stressed on the importance and responsibilities of the trainer. We are not here just to spend time nor pass the days. We are here to transfer the skills of competency, from a newbie to a ‘know-how’, from a know-how to an expert. We should seek to make this difference in our participants’ lives.

The 5 day training came to a most touching conclusion, where all of us, the participants-trainers and I, reaffirmed our commitment towards adding the value to our future participants and quality to our trainings. We had got to know each other better over these days of teaching, of practice and of sharing. I know in the deepest of my heart that they will emerge better trainers than before. They had shown that they had it in them.

The journey to become a trainer is by no means easy. While the ‘Trainer’ tag is easily pinned on, the expertise and effectiveness is hardly a god-given. It takes continuous learning, coupled with fine-tuning for betterment.

In a nutshell, here’s how you can master your training skills:

1. Get some experience in training. Being in the game is important, and experience is what is needed. You need to step into this industry first.

2. Get some humility to learn from your previous training experiences. Without humility, you can’t learn effectively.

3. Get reflective on how you can improve from your encounters, content delivery and training methodologies.

4. Get a mentor from the training industry who will coach you, share specific training techniques and help you work on your training skills intensively.

5. Get feedback from participants and observers. They can highlight ways where you can better appeal to them and enhance their learning.

6. Get creative. Experiment with ways to deliver your training so that you can discover your style of delivery.

7. Get on your feet! Nothing beats the power of taking action. Persistent action.

Here’s wishing you the very best in your training career!

(Source: wekie.com)

The Art Of Making Your Mentorship Meaningful

January 24, 2009

It was early this week that I met up with my various Mentees. I’ve always enjoyed such meetings because this offers an opportunity to catch up as well as speak up on the different issues faced, both in communication and in life.

Upon reflection and recollection of my mentorship workshops, I took greater strides to apply some of the concepts into my mentoring style. Because of the different personalities and experience you’ll come to face with from others, the mentorship relationship becomes ever evolving. That’s why mentoring is an art in itself.

When you employ the strategy and tools of mentorship, you effectively put in gear the cycle of change. It takes tact in communication and sensitivity in implementation. Very much have to be tied down and set up between the two of you, be it you being the mentor or the mentee.

I suggest employing the art of creating a “Meaningful Mentorship” by paying attention to the following pointers:

For Mentors:

1. Inculcate the spirit of sharing for the two of you.

2. Understand that learning is two-way. While your mentee learns from you, so can you learn.

3. Create a culture of mutual communication for trust and reliability.

For Mentees:

1. Know what makes your mentor tick so that you know how to maximize his accomplishments.

2. Ask the right questions to get the best practices.

3. Respect and show appreciation to your mentor. When you show appreciation, your mentor feels appreciated and is willing to support you further, giving more in the process.

(Source: wekie.com)

What You Can Do To Boost Your Sales, Negotiation and Persuasion Techniques

January 6, 2009

What I truly love about full day trainings on Sundays is that the streets are so peaceful whenever I travel to the workshop venue. And it always gives me newly energized perspectives to share differently. Hence for the recent Sunday training, I decided to add even more value to provide more concepts taught.

This was a customized training on “Selling Skills and Persuasion Techniques” for a major company in the industry. The large group of audience was highly participative and massively added to the fun and laughter. While sales techniques were practiced, I was also glad when I showed them how to further create more strategies that work.

Let’s explore how you can boost up these vital techniques of yours:

1. Be willing to experiment with different variations

Understand that there are no absolute fixed techniques that will work perfectly. You have to mesh the techniques with your personality and your mannerisms. As a result, varying circumstances do call for an invented strategy sometimes. While impromptu techniques may not work all the time, it adds to the fun of selling and negotiation.

2. Learn to be observant of your potential customers

Your customers, when you are observant, will give you plenty of clues to know how to sell to them. There are always signs and cues that will somewhat provide you hint as to whether you are ‘colder’ or ‘warmer’ to getting the sale. However, your part is to train yourself to be observant enough to detect these all-important, profit-generating, quota closing signals. Experience through interaction does count very much in this case.

3. Work with a persuasion mentor by sharing your encounters

Your mentor for persuasion should be competent enough to detect, highlight and analyze your various blind spots during your interaction with your customers or colleagues. This will certainly help to accelerate your learning curve on this skill. In addition, your sharing allows you to further encapsulate your thoughts through your expression, giving in greater reflection and learning.

When you conscientiously work on these pointers, you will, over time, experience a greater sense of understanding towards applying addition sales and persuasion techniques. These hence, become an integral part of you eventually.

Wishing you the results that Excel Beyond Excellence in this New Year!

(Source: wekie.com)

From A Time Of Birthday Reflection To A Year Of Growth

December 24, 2008

As I sit here in the middle of the night typing out my thoughts, I can’t help taking a quick glance at my organizer. Flipping the dogged-ear pages back and forth brought back a sense of sweet nostalgic feelings. I remembered just a year ago, on my Birthday; I made my annual reflective recollection in my own quiet time.

It brought to mind how thankful I was for the year’s encounters. I also remembered the friends I’ve made in my talks, trainings as well as those who had engaged me as their personal coach. The contributions they’ve allowed me to make in their lives had helped in my grand appreciation of the world at large.

These fuelled my realization of how complex the entire human race can be, yet how simple the solutions can turn out to become.

Paradoxical, perhaps? Yes, indeed.

And you’ll be surprised how much an irony life can turn out to be.

Nonetheless, to me, it simply means how clear cut I can see the answers to the problems are. These insights now merge into an experience and discovery I’ve deeply treasured in my personal capacity as a citizen of my community and of the entire universe. Hence, I strive to add these values and learning into my work as a speaker and trainer.

In the course of this year I’ve been receiving an increasing amount of speaking, coaching and training engagements. They are often packed back to back, at times running for a series of days. Hence a nearly continuous standing up of 8 to 11 hours a day makes my legs demand that I treat them to a warm massage and a deep healing rub. Despite their lamentations, I carried on “mis-treating” them. But, it’s all worth it.

It’s an emotional high whenever I speak or train! No joke. I’ve never been as serious as now. 🙂

Therefore, this is what makes me grow. I’ve discovered that: When I’m doing what I truly love, it’s all worth it!

Ok, I know some people will exclaim, “But I’m not doing what I love?!!”

Then, my friend, it’s time for you to reflect, and find a reason to love what you do. And you’ll start to grow too.

Complex problem, simple solution.

Merry Christmas to you!

(Source: wekie.com)

The 5 Major Keys To Facilitating Ideas Effectively

December 14, 2008

When I completed training the government leaders on Facilitation Skills last week, I was pleased with how this useful skill would open up the mindset of many people. After all, what we are looking at is the regulation and facilitation of ideas, thoughts and opinions. And everyone will somewhat have certain level of viewpoint. Even choosing to not have an opinion is also an opinion.

What matters most the essence of getting these ideas out of the person’s mind, conjured and packaged into something useful, practical and applicable. While these are always subjective, they still contribute somewhat to the progress. All it takes is a shift in paradigm.

Hence, the following crucial keys will prove useful whenever you facilitate ideas and thoughts with your group:

1. Never discount the value of an idea without first putting it to fair examination of worthiness.

2. Create the safe, encouraging environment for sharing.

3. Realize that an idea need not stand alone. It can be combined and rehashed with other ideas.

4. Set the ground rules of interaction and ensure that everybody is on the same page.

5. Just because there are critiques to the idea does not imply that the idea is not workable.

(Source: wekie.com)

Top 10 Reasons Why Your Brain “Malfunctions” Whenever You Need It To Work Most

November 3, 2008

You’ve been through this before. It was crunch time. Your future depended on it. Your happiness came down to this crucial moment. The turning point of your life beckoned. It’s make it or break it time, do or die…

Yet as you cleared your throat to speak, nothing came out. It’s not that you’ve lost your ability to articulate. But your mind just went blank. Nothing came out of your mouth. Try as you might, your brain simply refused to conjure up the next piece of sensible information. It went on strike, right on the dot.

And it couldn’t pick a better time; especially when you are attempting that 10-points examination question to graduate, bracing yourself for that love confession sentence which you’re dying to utter, and of course, the moments of awkward public speech silence. It was still on strike.

Yes, your brain left you to hang… high and dry.

And here’s why your precious brain decides to leave for a short tea-break or ‘vacation’ whenever you need it to report for work:

1. You don’t understand or know your own natural biorhythm. I call this your PPPs, “Peak Performance Period”.

2. You’ve yet to learn how to focus on what motivates. As a result you give in to distractions, internally and environmentally.

3. Your own physical body does not acquire the sufficient or suitable nutrition to keep your brain working healthily.

4. You don’t have the right motivation and driving desire to propel yourself.

5. The lack of energy and rest makes us too tired for intensive mental work.

6. You got overwhelmed by the tasks and challenges that face you. You felt too ‘microscopically and atomically small’ for such a gigantic glorious mission that might change the history of mankind and the surface of the earth.

7. Anxiety, worry, frustrations, fear took over your mind and imagination instead of you being relaxed. The stress you experienced made your mind went ‘blank’

8. It’s the result of poor thinking and working habits you’ve, intentionally or un-wittedly, adopted over the years.

9. You have yet to master your mind to a reasonable, applicable level. The techniques of mind mastery and brain power continue to lie undiscovered for you.

10. You’ve never “wanted it to work” in the first place. You saw the act as a need and as an obligation instead of an all-inspiring purpose. Hence it’s because of your attitude towards the work.

(Source: wekie.com)

How Young People Can Be Set On The Path To Public Speaking Success

November 2, 2008

Many students are starting to realize the importance of public speaking and being able to communicate effectively. I’ve been training in different schools and individual students over the years in subjects such as these. The consistent sign I notice is the awareness and the discovery on the benefits that public speaking can bring to themselves.

As I coached and guided my students during Speech Coaching last night, I could notice how serious they were in wanting to become better in the art of oratorical speaking. The firm determination to better their speeches made me want to contribute even more, share with them a lot deeper in mastering public speaking.

For those who are interested unto the road of speaking success, here are some recommendations:

1. Seek understanding and support from your loved ones, especially your parents.

2. Join a public speaking training or a special interest program like The Toastmasters or The Gavel Clubs.

3. Seek out a personal mentor who can massively shorten your learning curve.

4. Listen and learn from the more experienced speakers often.

5. Find opportunities to speak regularly. It’s a skill you must hone consistently, never something acquired overnight. Nothing beats practice. You can’t replace correct practice.

(Source: wekie.com)

7 SHAREEE Ways To Create, Build And Sustain A Successful Mentoring Relationship

October 7, 2008

I was giving a talk tonight to the NUS Toastmasters about Mentoring. Over the months, the Club has managed to put together a more formalized Mentorship Program. The response tonight was overwhelming and the energy was extremely high. Kudos to the organizers for their efforts in bringing everyone, both the Mentors and Mentees, to the same place.

During my segment, I shared with the audience the 7 useful ways to create, build and sustain the relationship between Mentors and Mentees that will foster camaraderie. It’s a series of SHAREEE ways:

System. Have a system of contact and guidance, both agreeable between the mentor and the mentee.

Honesty. Be acceptable to frank opinions and be open to share constructive criticism.

Accessibility. You can’t build a relationship with an invisible man. Both of you will have to be somewhat accessibility and available to each other, to some reasonable degree.

Reflective. This enables you to reflect on your learning and progress as time passes, deepening the value of such a mentoring relationship

Empathy. Be in each other’s shoes to understand the inner motivations and causes of behaviours. This will enhance mutual appreciation of where the other party comes from.

Experienced. The Mentor will have to be experienced in guiding and providing suitable advice. The Mentee, on the other hand, will gain experience in being mentored the right way and benefit accordingly.

Excelling. Both of you must eventually grow in your own right and be excelling in your own designed dimensions. This becomes proves that your mentoring relationship is positive and has worked for you.

In short, you Excel Beyond Excellence!

Source: wekie.com