<![CDATA[CWI - PEX BLOG]]>Mon, 02 Oct 2017 07:16:55 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[The Big 5 to Achieve Exceptional Results, and Build Massive Success]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:06:15 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/the-big-5-to-achieve-exceptional-results-and-build-massivesuccessPicture
For years, I’ve worked with professionals from various specialties, in different industries from different cultures, and it has always amazed me how only very few of them achieve exceptional & sustainable results, massive success, and make a remarkable difference in their lives and the life of those around them. That made me ask the question: what makes these individuals such successful achievers! Some are not necessarily highly educated or sophisticated professionals! How come these individuals achieved such scale of success regardless of their social status, scientific knowledge or educational background!

Matter of the fact, lots of those who I came across as successful were not necessarily wealthy or highly educated, some barely had some education on them. People like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Anthony Robbins, John D. Horace Greely, Henry Ford, Albert Einstine, Hiam Saban, John Paul DeJoria, and the list goes on and on, were not all highly educated and Ph.D. graduates or even Masters’s degree holders, actually, some were not college graduates! So how come these people made it to the top? What is different? What is their secret?

Were they made different, or did they have a different brain structure! I don’t know about that! But, interestingly enough, here’s what I noticed similar between those who achieved exceptional results, massive success and had an impact on an even larger scale worldwide.

They all seem to have followed a more or less similar mindset, pattern of thought:

1-    They all had a Clear Vision of what they want to do;

2-    They had the Passion for what they were seeking to achieve;

3-    They had the Hunger for achieving their vision and satisfying their inner passion.

Although their vision was not appreciated initially, actually some were ridiculed because of their thoughts, yet, in the end, those who had that vision and the hunger to achieve their inner passion, are the ones who made it to the top. In fact, some have changed the world as we knew it and created new paradigms.

As I continue to observe & study the success of these people and others in our daily life, here’s what I notice they all do in common:

1-              They imagine the big picture, and they have a reason for it. They don’t plan their life events all at once, neither they imagine the details of their entire life as a whole, but rather they create a big picture in their mind. They create a wider perspective of what they want to do, and then they realistically navigate their way through by taking few steps ahead, hit it hard; score;  and then they move on to the next step. As a result, they end up painting the big picture and filling in the details as they move on.

When you ask them “Why” do they have that big picture in mind and “Why” they want to do what they plan to do, the answer [in most cases] points towards the main reason, a strong driver embedded deep within them. Mostly, it’s an event they have been through or an experience they want to enjoy, and you would find that it is the least explicitly communicated.

2-              They Decide on exactly what they want to do. In other words, they set a goal, or as I like to think of it “ A Point of Interest”, one that they are deeply passionate about and want to reach. There’s a strong enough reason for them to achieve that point of interest. It’s in them, inside their brains, as they think of it, it makes their hearts pound so strong that it pushes the blood stream in their veins and brains so strong just like launching a rocket off the ground. That is the firepower within.

3-              They Analyze the gaps. They clearly understand where they are now, where they want to go and do, and what needs to happen for them to get to the next step towards their desired point of interest.

4-              They Act based on facts. They vigorously & realistically move ahead and act based on what they have between their hands, and what they need to do, to get to their point of interest. They know & understand their limitations as they are in the present time, and figure out how to get around these limitations as they proceed ahead.

They keep moving forward, and even if they slow down a bit, or may stop at one point or another, they do so because they are re-calculating their moves and evaluating their progress, but then once they have better clarity, they proceed ahead towards their point of interest. They are consistently in motion.

5-              They keep the focus & the faith. As long as they still feel the firepower within towards their point of interest, they never lose sight of what they desire to do, and where they want to go.

As long as that point of interest is still on the top of their priorities list, they keep all their efforts focused and targeted. They utilize all the resources available to them; benefit from circumstances around and deploy all they can, to get to their desired point of interest.

I have seen entrepreneurs, scientists, mechanics, artists and read about individuals from various walks of life who achieved remarkable results and success in their lives, success that positively changed the quality of their life, and the life of others lived with and around them, and they seemed to have at least used one of these steps.

Have you used anything different that helped achieve exceptional results?

Maybe you came across other ideas that contributed to achieving massive success. Share your thoughts with the world and let others know how to break into the era of achieving exceptional & sustainable results.

<![CDATA[Do you remember this? Success by design]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:06:01 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/do-you-remember-this-success-bydesign
<![CDATA[How to attract and retain talents that drive sustainable organizational performance?]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:05:36 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/how-to-attract-and-retain-talents-that-drive-sustainable-organizationalperformancePicture
As HR professionals, we find it harder and harder to retain highly performing employees for longer periods of time than ever. In some organizations, it appears that highly performing employees may start to lose their glamor, and their excellence starts to fade away slowly and erode.

We are facing new challenges to provide for Talent sustainability.

HR professionals put in every possible effort to attract, recruit & and retain talent by enriching the work environment with rewards and recognition programs that recognize high performance. They invest in developing leadership across the organization that supports taking high performers to the next level. Also, HR professionals put in place feedback mechanisms and processes that support employees’ continuous improvement to help them outperform.

In addition to their technical skills and expertise, we tend to hire professionals who produce outstanding results and successfully lead sophisticated projects. Yet, very seldom do we consider their professional values and personal qualities that the organization shares, throughout the hiring process.

We don’t commonly hear about hiring employees for who they really are, and how their identity and values match the organization.

Hiring someone for their values that match the organization’s, in addition to their knowledge and skills, of course, carries greater potential for employee retention. Not only does that contribute to reducing unhealthy attrition, but actually supports their continuous growth and productivity.

I’m not necessarily suggesting running a full personality assessment for each potential candidate, that being said, it might actually be beneficial to have such a report for shortlisted candidates as it may serve to take a better-informed hiring decision on who best fits the organization and carries greater chances of serving in the organization for longer period. One might at least consider the idea of integrating this aspect in the interview process, where candidates can be asked to share their values and personal qualities, and how has that contributed to their professional success so far.

Hiring the values
Alignment of personal, professional and organizational values can greatly contribute to supporting both individual and organizational performance. More importantly, it also contributes to talent retention and performance sustainability.

<![CDATA[How to boost professional performance and achieve mastery]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:05:09 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/how-to-boost-professional-performance-and-achievemasteryPicture
Achieving exceptional performance and mastery is a factor of deliberate practice.

One way to approach perfection in performance is to design and execute a series of focused, job/task-specific learning interactions, that will deliberately engage the learner in some cognitive/psychomotor learning activities that will guide the learner in the direction of perfecting the desired skills in his/her practice.

The attached diagram illustrates a well designed and structured adult learning strategy (based on Kolb’s learning cycle), that puts the learner in the center of the learning experience and progresses the learning using the concept of deliberate practice.

<![CDATA[Principle of Exceptional Leadership]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:04:05 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/principle-of-exceptionalleadership]]><![CDATA[When CEOs Talk Strategy, 70% Of The Company Doesn’t Get It]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:03:26 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/when-ceos-talk-strategy-70-of-the-company-doesnt-getitPicture

Clarity is key. Alignment is incredible power to drive excellence and high performance in the organization. Read more about what happens when these two essential elements of high performance are missing.

<![CDATA[4 Leadership Skills You Need, No Matter How High You Rank]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:02:56 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/4-leadership-skills-you-need-no-matter-how-high-yourankPicture
<![CDATA[Innovation: Transforming care delivery for the future]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:02:22 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/innovation-transforming-care-delivery-for-thefuturePicture
In healthcare, so as the case for other industries, Performance transformation to attain exceptional results through innovative can be challenging. It takes a lot of work to define clearly and identify the desired state to be reached, and why it is of such importance for the change to happen; it requires proper Alignment of the organizational resources towards achieving that sought after goal; and it requires the leadership to ensure empowerment and engagement are at its best across the different levels of the organization.

Here’s what global organizations are doing to take their performance to the next levels:


<![CDATA[How Successful People Stay Calm]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:01:36 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/how-successful-people-staycalm1Picture

The ability to manage your emotions and remain calm under pressure has a direct link to your performance. TalentSmart has conducted research with more than a million people, and we’ve found that 90% of top performers are skilled at managing their emotions in times of stress in order to remain calm and in control.

If you follow TalentSmart newsletter, you’ve read some startling research summaries that explore the havoc stress can wreak on one’s physical and mental health (such as the Yale study, which found that prolonged stress causes degeneration in the area of the brain responsible for self-control). The tricky thing about stress (and the anxiety that comes with it) is that it’s an absolutely necessary emotion. Our brains are wired such that it’s difficult to take action until we feel at least some level of this emotional state. In fact, performance peaks under the heightened activation that comes with moderate levels of stress. As long as the stress isn’t prolonged, it’s harmless.

New research from the University of California, Berkeley, reveals an upside to experiencing moderate levels of stress. But it also reinforces how important it is to keep stress under control. The study, led by post-doctoral fellow Elizabeth Kirby, found that the onset of stress entices the brain into growing new cells responsible for improved memory. However, this effect is only seen when stress is intermittent. As soon as the stress continues beyond a few moments into a prolonged state, it suppresses the brain’s ability to develop new cells.

“I think intermittent stressful events are probably what keeps the brain more alert, and you perform better when you are alert,” Kirby says. For animals, intermittent stress is the bulk of what they experience, in the form of physical threats in their immediate environment. Long ago, this was also the case for humans. As the human brain evolved and increased in complexity, we’ve developed the ability to worry and perseverate on events, which creates frequent experiences of prolonged stress.

Besides increasing your risk of heart disease, depression, and obesity, stress decreases your cognitive performance. Fortunately, though, unless a lion is chasing you, the bulk of your stress is subjective and under your control. Top performers have well-honed coping strategies that they employ under stressful circumstances. This lowers their stress levels regardless of what’s happening in their environment, ensuring that the stress they experience is intermittent and not prolonged.

While I’ve run across numerous effective strategies that successful people employ when faced with stress, what follows are ten of the best. Some of these strategies may seem obvious, but the real challenge lies in recognizing when you need to use them and having the wherewithal to actually do so in spite of your stress.

They Appreciate What They Have

Taking time to contemplate what you’re grateful for isn’t merely the “right” thing to do. It also improves your mood, because it reduces the stress hormone cortisol by 23%. Research conducted at the University of California, Davis found that people who worked daily to cultivate an attitude of gratitude experienced improved mood, energy, and physical well-being. It’s likely that lower levels of cortisol played a major role in this.

They Avoid Asking “What If?”

“What if?” statements throw fuel on the fire of stress and worry. Things can go in a million different directions, and the more time you spend worrying about the possibilities, the less time you’ll spend focusing on taking action that will calm you down and keep your stress under control. Calm people know that asking “what if? will only take them to a place they don’t want—or need—to go.

They Stay Positive

Positive thoughts help make stress intermittent by focusing your brain’s attention onto something that is completely stress-free. You have to give your wandering brain a little help by consciously selecting something positive to think about. Any positive thought will do to refocus your attention. When things are going well, and your mood is good, this is relatively easy. When things are going poorly, and your mind is flooded with negative thoughts, this can be a challenge. In these moments, think about your day and identify one positive thing that happened, no matter how small. If you can’t think of something from the current day, reflect on the previous day or even the previous week. Or perhaps you’re looking forward to an exciting event that you can focus your attention on. The point here is that you must have something positive that you’re ready to shift your attention to when your thoughts turn negative.

They Disconnect

Given the importance of keeping stress intermittent, it’s easy to see how taking regular time off the grid can help keep your stress under control. When you make yourself available to your work 24/7, you expose yourself to a constant barrage of stressors. Forcing yourself offline and even—gulp!—turning off your phone gives your body a break from a constant source of stress. Studies have shown that something as simple as an email break can lower stress levels.

Technology enables constant communication and the expectation that you should be available 24/7. It is extremely difficult to enjoy a stress-free moment outside of work when an email that will change your train of thought and get you thinking (read: stressing) about work can drop onto your phone at any moment. If detaching yourself from work-related communication on weekday evenings is too big a challenge, then how about the weekend? Choose blocks of time where you cut the cord and go offline. You’ll be amazed at how refreshing these breaks are and how they reduce stress by putting a mental recharge into your weekly schedule. If you’re worried about the negative repercussions of taking this step, first try doing it at times when you’re unlikely to be contacted—maybe Sunday morning. As you grow more comfortable with it, and as your coworkers begin to accept the time you spend offline, gradually expand the amount of time you spend away from technology.

They Limit Their Caffeine Intake

Drinking caffeine triggers the release of adrenaline. Adrenaline is the source of the “fight-or-flight” response, a survival mechanism that forces you to stand up and fight or run for the hills when faced with a threat. The fight-or-flight mechanism sidesteps rational thinking in favor of a faster response. This is great when a bear is chasing you, but not so great when you’re responding to a curt email. When caffeine puts your brain and body into this hyperaroused state of stress, your emotions overrun your behavior. The stress that caffeine creates is far from intermittent, as its long half-life ensures that it takes its sweet time working its way out of your body.

They Sleep

I’ve beaten this one to death over the years and can’t say enough about the importance of sleep to increasing your emotional intelligence and managing your stress levels. When you sleep, your brain literally recharges, shuffling through the day’s memories and storing or discarding them (which causes dreams), so that you wake up alert and clear-headed. Your self-control, attention, and memory are all reduced when you don’t get enough—or the right kind—of sleep. Sleep deprivation raises stress hormone levels on its own, even without a stressor present. Stressful projects often make you feel as if you have no time to sleep, but taking the time to get a decent night’s sleep is often the one thing keeping you from getting things under control.

They Squash Negative Self-Talk

A big step in managing stress involves stopping negative self-talk in its tracks. The more you ruminate on negative thoughts, the more power you give them. Most of our negative thoughts are just that—thoughts, not facts. When you find yourself believing the negative and pessimistic things, your inner voice says, “It’s time to stop and write them down.” Literally stop what you’re doing and write down what you’re thinking. Once you’ve taken a moment to slow down the negative momentum of your thoughts, you will be more rational and clear-headed in evaluating their veracity.

You can bet that your statements aren’t true any time you use words like “never,” “worst,” “ever,” etc. If your statements still look like facts once they’re on paper, take them to a friend or colleague you trust and see if he or she agrees with you. Then the truth will surely come out. When it feels like something always or never happens, this is just your brain’s natural threat tendency inflating the perceived frequency or severity of an event. Identifying and labeling your thoughts as thoughts by separating them from the facts will help you escape the cycle of negativity and move toward a positive new outlook.

They Reframe Their Perspective

Stress and worry are fueled by our own skewed perception of events. It’s easy to think that unrealistic deadlines, unforgiving bosses, and out-of-control traffic are the reasons we’re so stressed all the time. You can’t control your circumstances, but you can control how you respond to them. So before you spend too much time dwelling on something, take a minute to put the situation in perspective. If you aren’t sure when you need to do this, try looking for clues that your anxiety may not be proportional to the stressor. If you’re thinking in broad, sweeping statements such as “Everything is going wrong” or “Nothing will work out,” then you need to reframe the situation. A great way to correct this unproductive thought pattern is to list the specific things that actually are going wrong or not working out. Most likely you will come up with just some things—not everything—and the scope of these stressors will look much more limited than it initially appeared.

They Breathe

The easiest way to make stress intermittent lies in something that you have to do everyday anyway: breathing. The practice of being in the moment with your breathing will begin to train your brain to focus solely on the task at hand and get the stress monkey off your back. When you’re feeling stressed, take a couple of minutes to focus on your breathing. Close the door, put away all other distractions, and just sit in a chair and breathe. The goal is to spend the entire time focused only on your breathing, which will prevent your mind from wandering. Think about how it feels to breathe in and out. This sounds simple, but it’s hard to do for more than a minute or two. It’s all right if you get sidetracked by another thought; this is sure to happen at the beginning, and you just need to bring your focus back to your breathing. If staying focused on your breathing proves to be a real struggle, try counting each breath in and out until you get to 20, and then start again from 1. Don’t worry if you lose count; you can always just start over.

This task may seem too easy or even a little silly, but you’ll be surprised by how calm you feel afterward and how much easier it is to let go of distracting thoughts that otherwise seem to have lodged permanently inside your brain.

They Use Their Support System

It’s tempting, yet entirely ineffective, to attempt tackling everything by yourself. To be calm and productive, you need to recognize your weaknesses and ask for help when you need it. This means tapping into your support system when a situation is challenging enough for you to feel overwhelmed. Everyone has someone at work and/or outside work who is on their team, rooting for them, and ready to help them get the best from a difficult situation. Identify these individuals in your life and make an effort to seek their insight and assistance when you need it. Something as simple as talking about your worries will provide an outlet for your anxiety and stress and supply you with a new perspective on the situation. Most of the time, other people can see a solution that you can’t because they are not as emotionally invested in the situation. Asking for help will mitigate your stress and strengthen your relationships with those you rely upon. 


Travis Bradberry, Ph.D.

Dr. Travis Bradberry is the award-winning co-author of the #1 bestselling book, Emotional Intelligence 2.0, and the cofounder of TalentSmart, the world’s leading provider ofemotional intelligence testsemotional intelligence training, and emotional intelligence certification, serving more than 75% of Fortune 500 companies. His bestselling books have been translated into 25 languages and are available in more than 150 countries. Dr. Bradberry has written for, or been covered by, Newsweek, BusinessWeek, Fortune, Forbes, Fast Company, Inc., USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Harvard Business Review.

<![CDATA[Executive Coaching—5 Top Mistakes—A Coach’s Perspective]]>Tue, 07 Jul 2015 19:01:22 GMThttp://cantactics.ca/pex-blog/executive-coaching5-top-mistakesa-coachsperspectivePicture

(This article is authored and published by (Blanchard LeaderChat))

Executive coaching has become a mainstream development tool for leaders in today’s organizations. The challenge with any tool is to use it properly. Used poorly, a tool can have unintentional effects, or fail to achieve the desired outcomes.

That was one of the key points that Patricia Overland, Executive Coaching Solutions Partner with The Ken Blanchard Companies made in a recent presentation onCoaching In Today’s Organizations—Best Practices and Common Mistakes. Drawing on her extensive experience helping to implement coaching in a wide variety of organizations, Overland shared the five mistakes she sees organizations making most often.

1. Failing to set the context.  

It’s important to be clear on communicating why individuals are being offered coaching.  Overland shared an experience of bringing coaching into an organization where it had been previously used to correct performance and was seen as a last ditch effort to “save” people before termination. The new program was focused on development and helping leaders grow. In this instance, resetting the context of coaching was a first priority.  As Overland explained, “Imagine what people would have thought if they were chosen for this new coaching program without first addressing the old way of viewing coaching!”

2. Failing to get top down sponsorship. 

Overland stressed the importance of having a top-down mandate and formal senior leader sponsorship to help with overcoming organizational barriers and easing change management.  A successful coaching implementation is much harder without sponsorship. Overland’s advice? Know what is important to senior leaders and address that in program design and in setting coaching objectives.

3. Not vetting the coach or the coaching organization.

Overland explained that there are several factors to consider when selecting a coach. In Overland’s experience, individual executives often emphasize hiring a coach who is most like them in terms of industry experience and positional title. “I’d like to be coached by a former VP in my industry,” for example. On the other hand, learning and development departments who are bringing in coaches may pay more attention to global capability, cost, and a coach’s past track record of getting results. Vetting the coach in a variety of areas can help ensure that coaches selected are a best fit for your organization and your people.

4. Ignoring measurement and evaluation of coaching.

Measuring the outcome of coaching can be difficult and time consuming. However, in order to ensure the investment in time, dollars, and effort is paying off, some form of measurement needs to be implemented. The process begins by getting clear on the desired outcomes of the coaching initiative, setting expectations around outcomes, and then coaching to those outcomes. Overland explained that it is not enough for a client to say, “I want to improve my communication.” Be sure to clarify to what end, and how that will affect the person being coached, the people around them, and the organization.

5. Underestimating the balance between development and workload.

Workload is a real concern. Overland explained that the culture you create, and the permission you give people to take time to be coached is an integral factor in whether or not coaching works. “People want to grow, change, and develop but when the boss says, ‘I need this now,’ not many people are willing to defer and say, ‘I have a coaching call now.’” To address this, Overland recommends creating a culture that engages leaders in the development of their people and where learning is a part of the ongoing daily dialogue.

With a little bit of care and planning, Overland believes that any size organization can improve the capabilities of their executives through coaching.  To learn more about Overland’s recommended approach—including case studies and best practices—be sure to check out the recording and handout from her session, Coaching In Today’s Organizations—Best Practices and Common Mistakes. It’s free courtesy of Cisco WebEx and The Ken Blanchard Companies!

(Click here to read this article on Blanchard LeaderChate )