Airplane Facts For Those Afraid of Flying

About 1 in 5 people have some form of fear of flying, or “aviophobia.” I was one of them, but my job required me to fly often for many years. To overcome this fright, I studied much about flight design, construction and safety.

Something that helped me considerably was knowing what the odds are of dying in a plane crash.

🔹Odds of dying in a car accident are about one in 5,000.

🔹Odds of being struck by lightning, are one in 13,000 chance for your lifetime.

🔹Your odds of dying in a plane crash are about one in 11,000,000.

🔹Fatal accidents occurred once every 200,000 flights in the 1950s and 1960s. Today, fatal accidents (also including private and small planes) only occur once every two million flights.

Most of my flights were over Texas and Mexico, often in private jets. As the president of a professional trade organization in the 1990s, I was required to give speeches across North America in locations such as New York, LA, Chicago, Orlando, Seattle, Las Vegas, Nashville, Atlantic City and Washington DC. I’ve also traveled to Europe, Cayman Islands and elsewhere.

Another bit of knowledge I learned talking with numerous pilots is that passengers should not be as concerned about turbulence as some individuals might be.

“It’s not a danger. It’s just a nuisance,” one pilot said. “We try to avoid them, naturally, because they are like bumps in the roads for us. I don’t want to spill my coffee and we don’t want you to either. Don’t worry about turbulence.”

Here are facts I learned about flying in general:

🔹Airplanes are designed to withstand lightning strikes.

🔹If you sit at the back of an airplane, your odds of surviving a crash are 40% higher.

🔹Research shows that the first 3 minutes after takeoff and the final 8 minutes before landing are when 80% of plane crashes happen.

When a plane lands at night, cabin crews will dim the interior lights. Why?

In an unlikely event that a plane landing goes badly and passengers need to evacuate, their eyes will already be adjusted to the darkness.

🔹Only 5% of the world’s population had ever been on an airplane till 2013 which drastically increased to approximately 20 percent in 2020.

🔹A Boeing 747 is made up of six million parts which are made to be all controlled by a few pilots sitting up front with switches and buttons under their fingertips.

🔹It is the rule that pilots must be fed the same multi-course meal given to those in the first and business class. However, co-pilots are encouraged to eat different entrees to guard against cases of food poisoning.

🔹Those white lines that planes leave in the sky are simply trails of condensation, hence their technical name of “contrails.” Plane engines release water vapor as part of the combustion process. When that hot water vapor is pumped out of the exhaust and hits the cooler air of the upper atmosphere, it creates those puffy white lines in the sky. It’s basically the same reaction as when you see your breath when it’s cold outside.

🔹Environment inside an airplane can alter the way food and drink tastes—sweet items tasted less sweet, while salty flavors were heightened. The dry recycled air inside the plane cabin doesn’t help either as low humidity can further dull taste and smell making everything in a plane seem bland.

🔹Plane doors can’t actually open in mid-flight.

🔹Australian airline Qantas has never had a fatal accident involving one of its commercial aircrafts.

🔹The fastest commercial plane flew at twice the speed of sound. It was the Concorde, that regularly flew over the Atlantic, and was decommissioned after an accident involving Concorde, in France.

🔹Long-haul flights have secret bedrooms and a bathroom for flight attendants.

🔹Living in an airplane flight path could harm your heart, especially those closer to an airport. Individuals exposed to noise above 60 decibels on a regular basis—like the sound of an airplane overhead—have a 30 percent greater risk of dying from a heart attack than those typically exposed to noise levels under 45 decibels.

🔹Why is there a tiny hole in the airplane windows? It regulates cabin pressure. Most airplane windows are made up of three panels of acrylic. The exterior window keeps the elements out to maintain cabin pressure.

The world’s safest airlines in 2022, according to AirlineRatings.com (out of the 385 different airlines they monitor) are Air New Zealand, Etihad Airways, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, TAP Air Portugal, SAS, Qantas, Alaska Airlines, EVA Air, Virgin Australia/Atlantic, Cathay Pacific Airways, Hawaiian Airlines, American Airlines, Lufthansa/Swiss Group, Finnair, Air France/KLM Group, British Airways, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines and Emirates.

AirlineRatings.com also identified their Top 10 safest low-cost airlines. In alphabetical order they are Allegiant, easyjet, Frontier, Jetstar Group, Jetblue, Ryanair, Vietjet, Volaris, Westjet, and Wizz.

The least safe airlines are Pakistan International Airlines, Air Algerie, Scat, Sriwijaya Air, Airblue, Blue Wing, Iran Aseman Airlines, and Nepal Airlines.

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The Most Important Theme of ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad”

Rich Dad, Poor Dad revolves around three main characters: poor dad, rich dad (Robert T. Kiyosaki’s second father) and the son (the author himself as narrator of the book). The essence of each character is:

  • Poor dad – educated but lacking the street smarts
  • Rich dad – very little education (eighth grade), tons of street smarts
  • Kiyosaki – the spectator who learns lessons from both but internalizes only rich dad’s traits

The story of Robert Kiyosaki and Mike starts in 1956 Hawaii, when both boys were a nine years old. Their first get-rich scheme was a counterfeit nickel making company. They made plaster molds of the nickels and melted lead toothpaste tubes and filled the molds to produce the nickels. Their plan was foiled by Mike’s father, who informed the boys of their illegal activity.

After that day, the boys dedicated their free time to leaning about finance and economics from Mike’s father, the rich dad. The first lesson Mike’s dad made the boys experience was hatred of the “Rat Race”. He was able to achieve this by making the boys work in one of his grocery stores for three hours for ten cents an hour pay. Within a few weeks, Kiyosaki, tired of being exploited for labor, demanded that he receive a raise, but instead, Mike’s father cut his pay and told him to work for free.

Eventually, both boys tired of being under appreciated (and unpaid) and they met individually with Mike’s father. In their meetings with rich dad, he apologized for lack of pay and he offered them either the moral of the lesson or a pay raise. Both boys chose to learn the moral of the lesson, while rich dad offered them pay raises. He started at twenty-five cents, a dollar, two dollars, and even five dollars, which would have been considered a large amount of money for an hourly wage, but the boys still remained strong with their decision to learn the moral of the lesson.

The lesson to get out of the “Rat Race” and instead of spending your whole life working to put a little money in your pocket and a bunch of money in someone else’s pocket, have people work hard to put money in your pocket. Out of all the lessons that were taught to the boys, this one was the most important.

Poor Dad

The author compares his poor dad to the millions of fathers who encourage their sons to do well in school so they could get a good job with a good company. Poor dad believed in the traditional principles of working hard, saving money, and not buying material things that one cannot afford. He believed that having a good job with a solid company is what one should aspire for; hence he expresses disappointment when his son leaves the employ of a large, reputable corporation.

Poor dad looks to education as the passport to success. He held a doctorate degree, went to Ivy League universities, but was always struggling financially. He believed he would never be a rich man and the author points out that this became a self-fulfilling prophecy. Poor dad was more interested in a good education than the subject of money. The author wrote that his poor dad would always say things like, “I’m not interested in money” or “money doesn’t matter.”

The author points out that poor dad was preoccupied with things like job tenure and security, Social Security, vacation and sick leaves, company insurance and salary raises and promotions. The author felt that his poor dad was more interested in these factors rather than on the job itself. This is what the author calls being trapped in the Rat Race.

His poor dad worked hard incessantly but somehow never made it ahead financially. Poor dad’s approach to the subject of money was based on working hard to have enough money to pay the bills (in contrast to rich dad’s approach to make one’s money work for him).

Rich Dad

The author wrote that it was when he was nine years old that he started realizing that his rich dad made much more sense than his poor dad. It was from rich dad that the author learned not to say, “I can’t afford it”, but instead to ask, “how can I afford it?” He explains this principle by relating an incident when he and his best friend Mike went to work for Mike’s father. Rich dad paid them very low wages deliberately so that would stir anger and a sense of injustice in them and eventually for them to realize that in order to get ahead, one must work for himself and not for others.

For example, in that part of the book when the author complains to rich dad that he can hardly afford to buy anything with the wages he is paid, rich dad tells him that he shouldn’t dwell on the fact that his wages are low, but instead ask “how can I make more money” because this stimulates the brain to take action. His rich dad says that when someone says, “I can’t afford it”, his brain stops working. It therefore kills initiative and promotes passivity.

The author adds that while his poor dad invested time and effort in education, he did not have any knowledge on investing. His rich dad, by contrast, was very skilled in the investment game because that’s all he did. The attitude of his rich dad about money was manifested in the saying “the lack of money is the root of all evil” (his poor dad, on the other hand, believed that the love of money is the root of all evil).

According to the author, rich dad also nurtured the idea that taxes punished producers and rewarded the non-producers. He was the type who encouraged money talk at the dinner table and was portrayed by the author as someone who learned to manage risk, instead of not taking risks.

The Son (Robert T. Kiyosaki)

The author takes a common sense approach to the subject of money and emphasizes the need for accounting knowledge so that the reader clearly understands what assets and liabilities are. He makes simple diagrams that show the inflow and outflow of money and how the rich build up the asset column and the poor build up the liability column (expenses). It is obvious that the author places much importance on accounting knowledge – no matter how boring it is – because he says it is “the most important subject in your life.”

By using numerous examples and anecdotes, the author drives home his messages effectively, revealing his pro-capitalist stance.

The author also shows his understanding of the mechanisms employed by the government and the tax man and concludes that it is the middle class that actually pay for the poor. The rich are the ones who are hardly taxed because they have the knowledge to use tax legislation to their advantage.

A Primary Theme in Rich Dad, Poor Dad

One theme that’s apparent in this book is that for an individual to be wealthy, he must aim to own the system or means of production, rather than work for another individual. The author stresses that there is obviously something confining about being an employee; it shuts the mind to other possibilities and it stunts initiative.

Financial intelligence is THE most powerful asset. By studying the precepts of accounting and investing, the author believes that individuals will be able to see the difference between an asset and a liability; in fact it is the more concrete application of learning what’s right and what’s wrong. Generating a string of expenses is wrong, building assets is right.

Unlike individuals who earn and then pay taxes on what they earn, corporations earn, spend what they want to spend, and pay taxes on what’s left. Corporations, therefore, hold a certain degree of power. The rich know how to use this power, the poor don’t.

The author also believes that true luxuries are experienced when they are the outward manifestations of intelligent investing and asset building. He cites the example of his wife purchasing a Mercedes Benz because it was the car she liked and worked hard to be able to purchase it. The author cautions however about keeping up with the Joneses and getting into debt because of this human frailty.

Fear, laziness, cynicism and arrogance are to be blamed for most of human inaction.

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CleverJourneys 2nd Anniversary: Thanks to Our Readers

Loralyn “Dodie” and Jack Dennis wish to thank all of our faithful readers for your support. On the eve of our second anniversary for our CleverJourneys blog, we reached 1,110,011 unique viewers. Our best yet.

We began on May 1, 2020. Although I previously wrote articles for Examiner, AXS Entertainment, The Rowdy and my own News Legit, CleverJourneys is my dream come true (well, one of many thanks to God).

This is not too bad for two young seniors that have known each other since our first year of school way back when. To celebrate, we hope you enjoy these:

Here are some our regular features in leadership popularity order.

JackNotes: Summaries of books, classes, conferences, speeches and knowledge of over 40 years.

Another of our most popular articles series are JackNotes, executive summaries of books, articles, speeches and other useful information that may save you the expense and trouble of reading the entire publication….or it may spur you on to seek more information from the original source.

TRUE CRIME STORIES

Another feature, Accounts of the Old West is a tribute to Jack’s great, great uncle Charlie Bassett, the first marshall of Dodge City, Kansas…and James Allison Morgan–a cattle driver and cowboy, Jack’s great grandfather. (You thought TV’s ‘Marshal Matt Dillon’ was the first didn’t you?) We feature tales and history of the Old West.

EXPLORE FURTHER
Travel, Road Trips, Destinations, Tips
Food, recipes, restaurants, cooking

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Sources and Networking for Writers, Investigators and Sales People

“Where do you get your ideas for articles? How do you develop and retain dependable sources? How do you sell more? Increase business? Obtain information?”

These are common questions I have received over the years as a “Jack of All Trades” being an investigative reporter, insurance salesman, business executive, trade organization president, writer, detective and corporate facilities manager. The simple answer is to be a good networker.

Personal Connections

After making any connection, I always tried to build on it. Sometimes it takes creativity and thoughtfulness, but those are wonderful traits for life anyway. At HEB Food/Drugs, my division had thousands of employees (Partners), service providers, vendors and other resources to keep our stores, offices, warehouses, manufacturing plants and other real estate safe, lawful and in welcoming conditions.

H-E-B calls employees ‘Partners’

Early on, I would use Rolodex files (labeled: “Sources,” “Engineers,” “Partners,” “Designers,” Electricians,” and others) for individual information on people in each category.

For example, when I visited Austin, Houston, Dallas, the Rio Grande Valley, the Coastal Bend and other regions of Texas, the file for that area would include more than just names, phone numbers, and emails. It was critical to have personal notes to connect and care with individuals I may come in contact with. Examples might be:

Birthplace, Birthday, Anniversaries, Spouse, Children, Other Family, Connections, Hobbies, Interests, Education, and Accomplishments.

Others items to note might include Affiliations, Career and Work History, Goals, Prides, and other interests.

“Is Bobby, Jr. still playing baseball this year? How’s Nancy doing in track? Here’s an autograph of Tim Duncan for your brother. I know he’s big on Spurs basketball,” were some ways to build rapport.

The key was to capture the bits and pieces of hot, vital information
about people I met. These appear as phrases such as “Texas State alum,” “loves to fish,” “never eats lunch,” and so on.

Many times I kept a pocket recorder to help remember for when I jotted it down in the hotel room or plane ride later. As technology developed, I kept computer files and spreadsheets instead of manual Rolodexes.

Note: Even today, I do not include confidential information and confidential names on a computer or internet file. My reputation and ability to gather data and news depends on sources trusting me.

Resources You Can Count On

It’s all a lot of work, but worth every minute of it. What does all this
have to do with resolving an emergency, mitigating a problem, gathering resources, or closing the sale? Just about everything when it’s
used at the moment it’s needed.

Who can you depend on for help when your dealing with a hurricane, a sales proposal or news article?

I don’t subscribe to the saying “Networking is a numbers game.” The success doesn’t come from how many people you can meet. What you actually need is to have a list of people and resources you can count on.

One of my greatest mentors was a senior vice president of Facility Alliance at H-E-B, Ralph G. Mehringer. I watched and learned. When he met someone for the first time–a food server, janitor, visitor, new partner, whoever— Ralph was consistent about making them feel like the most important person in the room.

When I lived in an apartment above the Majestic Theater in downtown San Antonio, a neighbor, Walter Stovell, known as the “Godfather of Houston Street,” totally made eye contact with others–and he kept it. He smiled. He listened.

Majestic Theater

During conversations, Walter made comments and asked questions that showed he was hearing and listening. One day the current and two ex-mayors of the Alamo City walked by and Walter amazed me with his abilities to engage each one opportunities to express themselves without interruption.

What If You Need a Large List to Increase Sales or Potential Sales?

A sales person may mention to someone for whom has been a good customer, “I was just going through my checks, and I realized I spent over $2000 with you last year. I guess we’re really getting to depend on each other more than I knew.”

A typical question I receive is “where do you get your articles and story ideas?” They are all over, if you network properly.


You can expand networking by simply trading networks with someone else.
How big is your network? If you answered infinite, you’re
right. You’re only limited by the number of people on earth. Your network is potentially the size
of all your contacts, plus all your relatives’ contacts, your
friends’ contacts, your business associates’ contacts, and so on.

Suppose you want to introduce a new service you offer. Are you going to limit the list to the names you’ve been able to scrape together? Of course not. You’ll ask me for my list, and if I like the offer I might even ask a few other people for their lists. Instead of a few hundred names, you now have a few thousand.

Always treat anyone’s contacts with the utmost respect. Like tightrope walking, this is a system based on trust. A fall from grace, like a fall from the high wire, can be very hard to recover from.

3 Tips on Selling

🔹 Be Knowledgeable. If you want people to listen to you, you need to be an expert about the product you’re selling, about the market it exists in, and about the way it addresses the needs of your customer.

🔹Establish Rapport. Your primary responsibility is to establish a connection between the needs of the customer and the solutions that your product/service provides. It’s about them, not you. If you’re not paying attention to the customers’ needs, how could you ever accomplish that? Listen to what they’re saying. Ask questions to gain deeper understanding. Seek to build and demonstrate empathy.

🔹Build Relationships. Many people will go to online reviews to learn about your product or service. It’s amazing how much stronger leads are that come from customer referrals. Cultivating customer relationships will give you more leads, and when you listen to compliments and complaints about your offering, it will help you improve for future customers.

One final thought is to use the forever faith 80/20 rule. Twenty percent of your network likely provides 80 percent of the value. What have you done for them lately?

Jack Dennis

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HEB FOOD DRUGS

The Power of Habit Summary

Everyone has big dreams, but they think that they have to do huge things to accomplish those dreams. They get so overwhelmed by their own aspirations that they get analysis paralysis and are sluggish to accomplish anything, much less the big things they had planned. They forget that everything great is accomplished through consistent daily effort. In other words, greatness is a habit.

In the book, The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg tells us, “is that your habits are what you choose them to be.”

Everyone has habits, whether they know it or not. It’s simply the way the brain works. When you learn how your brain creates habits, you can figure out how to hack the brain and start replacing bad habits and building good ones.

Here’s a quick overview–every habit is centered around 3 things:

🔹a cue,

🔹a routine, and

🔹a reward.

Maybe you’d like to create a better morning routine. A lot of people wake up, hit snooze a few times, pick up their phones and catch up on news, social media, etc., and then get ready for work. The reward is more sleep, a comfortable morning, a slow start to the day.

But a comfortable morning is not a productive morning. So, if you can recognize the cue, you can alter the behavior, and change the reward. Lazy mornings usually happen because people keep their phone next to their bed and use it as their alarm. When you wake up, your phone is already in your hand, so of course you’re going to start your day by checking everything on it.

But if you change the cue by putting your phone across the room, you have to get up to turn off the alarm. When you’re standing there, you’re much less likely to spend much time on your phone. With the cue changed, it’s easier to change the routine to something like reading or exercise. As a result you’ll be rewarded with a healthier body, a sharper mind, and an all-around better day.

These rewards will cement the new behavior and over time you’ll have a much stronger daily performance that is grounded in strong habits.

When you know how the brain works, you can recognize the cues and rewards that you’ve been giving it and change them to eliminate unhealthy habits and build stronger ones. Over time, these habits will make you stronger, wealthier, and wiser.

Jack Dennis

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

HEB FOOD DRUGS

A Bias For Action: Procrastination is a Personal Pitfall

Read This Now, Not Later

For a number of years I taught a class called “A Bias For Action” to literally thousands of employees in classrooms, meetings and one-on-one.

It was important to make certain we had “shared expectations” and “working definitions” immediately. Hard as it might be to admit it, we sometimes put off the tough stuff in our lives and especially our job.

Some leaders would avoid confronting a direct report who isn’t performing within the new work environment. Others had a tendency to postpone projects that would test their self-confidence, abilities, comfort zone or patience. But procrastination is a leadership pitfall. Causing stress and anxiety, it sticks with you like glue until you’ve addressed it. So tackle the tough stuff first, and you’ll immediately eliminate undue stress, build your abilities, raise your comfort level, and boost self-confidence, too.

Here are some points to keep in mind:

Procrastination is the enemy. 

According to “Psychology Today,” 20% of people are chronic procrastinators. They avoid challenging tasks or addressing big issues, even seeking out opportunities for distraction.

So, what’s the big deal? Procrastination is negative and always has consequences — some direct, some indirect. These negative implications can be tangible, like a missed deadline, and intangible, such as irritability from losing sleep over an issue. It’s an enemy that affects you, your team and your company’s potential to succeed.

Addressing challenges is often easier than you think. 

Taking the first step is the hardest part, but things often go smoother after that. The classic example is when you’ve needed to address a performance issue with a direct report and been a bit worried over doing so. Then when you go to talk about it, the person is surprisingly receptive, rather than reactive, and your anxiety melts away. You think, “Why didn’t I do that sooner?” You’ve freed up your emotional and mental currency, the problem is addressed, and now you’re able to get back to and really focus on your main job.

Dealing with “it” leads to greater productivity.

Some people claim that they work better under pressure and actually use that clichéd excuse to avoid a project, problem or person. But this mindset’s repercussions can prevent and destroy productivity.

For example, maybe you’ve put off fixing some software bug because it would test your patience and take too much time. Yet the crippled system slows the daily performance of your direct reports — and then stops altogether when it crashes one day. Everyone (most notably you) now suffers big consequences. You must do (in panic mode) what you previously put off, plus repair and pay for more serious damage that’s now been done. No doubt, fixing the problem in the first place could have lessened or prevented the blow, yet one common reason people procrastinate “dealing with it” is simply because they don’t know how or where to start.

Begin by putting some ideas down on paper and then build a specific, deadline-oriented plan for tackling that tough stuff…and there will be A LOT during this time. Doing so will help you create the accountability and steps necessary for your goal achievement. And it will also help prevent further procrastination, so you can drive, rather than dodge, that critical, ever-productive change.

 6 Strategies ASAP To Keep Procrastination At Bay:

🔹Start on the day before day one. Your strategy to avoid workplace procrastination should start before your employee’s first day. Start with clear and accurate job description matched up to accurately qualified candidates, then analyze the next steps of your hiring process.

By recruiting and hiring employees that possess the right skills for the jobs at hand, you’ll get off to a good foundation in your quest to avoid procrastination pitfalls. Incorporate checkpoints in your interview questions, reference check process and in your interview testing process to look for signs that your potential new-hire has a procrastination track record.

Clarify goals and expectations. Now that you’ve done your best to hire the right employee for the right role, it’s quintessential that you set them up for success with a strong start. By communicating company-wide (as well as departmental) goals clearly and defining the expectations of the specific role, you’ll alleviate gray areas that could lead to workplace procrastination.

Make communication a two-way street. As business owners try to avoid workplace procrastination and correct it when it occurs, opening the communication lines with employees can be the greatest way to drill down on the causes. Create multiple communication vehicles to help employees communicate with management regarding issues that could lead to and improve upon workplace procrastination. This communication strategy can consist of surveys, anonymous comments boxes and push notifications via mobile app or intranet tools.

Train, train and retrain. Bake procrastination avoidance strategies into your training program for all employees. Be sure to train managers on ways to spot, address and avoid workplace procrastination issues among their teams.

Work on your company culture. A team of motivated, engaged employees feels connected to the company mission at a deeper level and less prone to procrastination. Company culture can be the edge your business operations needs to keep procrastination and all its repercussions at bay. Creating a strong culture may consist of employee recognition programs, career development opportunities as well as work life balance considerations.

🔹Trust but verify. It’s important to place trust in your team and trust your hunches regarding your business, but the importance of measurement can’t be discounted. By setting up systems to measure deadlines, productivity and detect dips before they have detrimental impacts, you will gain real visibility into your business operations. Using this data, you can avoid workplace procrastination as well as be able to quantifiably reward the positive efforts of your team.

Letting procrastination run rampant in your workplace can cost your business customers, impact your bottom line and create a negative culture. If you make smart hiring decisions, set your team up for success and measurement performance, however, you’ll be able to avoid the complications that workplace procrastination can bring.

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Goettle HVAC and Plumbing services are located in Phoenix, Tucson, San Antonio, Austin, Las Vegas areas as well as regions in Southern California.

Books to Help You Cultivate Positive Thinking

By Anna Charles

Positive thinking is one of the most beneficial habits a person can adopt.

The Mayo Clinic explains that it is an effective form of stress management and can improve general health. It can also increase lifespan, lessen depression and stress, and help build better resistance against diseases.

In trying times, you should try to see things in an optimistic manner. Positive thinking isn’t about disregarding struggles; it’s about trying to look at a situation with a less abrasive perspective. This will help you live a happier and more fulfilling life. If you want to learn how to think more positively, there are many resources, like books, which can help you. Here are a few that will surely guide you to see things with a better mindset:

The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck

First on this list is a book by Mark Manson.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is all about learning to accept the circumstances you encounter and taking things in stride. Problems are inevitable but instead of feeling negatively towards them, learn to let go and not take them too seriously.

Iconic singer Freddie Mercury has said “I’ve lived a full life and if I’m dead tomorrow, I don’t give a damn,” which is the mindset Manson wanted to impart in his book. Knowing yourself, your strengths and your weaknesses can help you understand which challenges you can overcome and how. This will help you find constant and genuine happiness. It will also aid you in how to think more positively and productively.

Don’t Overthink It

Thinking and reflecting aren’t necessarily bad things, but when you tend to overdo it, it can lead to more stress and anxiety.

Don’t Overthink It by Anne Bogel aims to teach readers to stop overthinking on a daily basis. Overthinking can oftentimes feel like a pattern that is difficult to break and one that we have no control over.

But Bogel explains that negative thoughts can be changed to positive ones, even when you’re overthinking, using the many actionable strategies she lists in her book. Included inside is a framework that readers can use in discerning both small and big decisions. Simply following it can bring more peace, joy, and love into your life. This will not only guide you to breaking the habit of negative thinking but it will also help you find energy for things that really matter to you.

Happiness Becomes You

Tina Turner is a legendary name in the music industry. In her book Happiness Becomes You, she lays down the knowledge she has amassed throughout her life and career that helped her think positively. She tackles the many hardships she has encountered in hopes of giving people motivation to keep going.

Turner also taps into her Buddhist faith as it has kept her grounded for decades. She talks about how she turned her dreams into a reality and how to make the impossible happen. It details the many adversities that the singer was able to overcome before she found the success she has today. This book radiates nothing but positivity, and those who read it will learn a thing or two about how a good mentality can be a great help to achieving their goals.

Deep Kindness

One of the major aspects of positive thinking is learning to be less harsh on yourself and others.

Deep Kindness by Houston Kraft highlights the many ways readers can practice imparting goodwill. The book also explains how these principles can help you get ahead in life.

Kraft gives many exercises and prompts to help readers develop their sense of kindness and why it is important in today’s world. Not only will it help create a positive environment, but it will also help build a positive mentality by helping readers live a better and more fulfilling life. Through constant practice, you will find yourself acting more kindly towards yourself and those around you, making your mindset more optimistic overall.

Learning how to lessen negative thoughts can be difficult, but positive thinking is something many people need. Through learning to accept life’s challenges, spending more time on things you love, and being kinder to yourself, positive thinking can become second nature.

Guest Post written by Anna Charles for cleverjourneys.com

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

CleverJourneys Breaks Record With 1,000,000 Views

Congratulations to our blog site CleverJourneys for overcoming our single day readership record to reach over one million page views.

“We are thrilled,” said Dodie Dennis, now a retired Registered Nurse and one-half of the CleverJourneys team with husband Jack Dennis.

“It’s a blogger’s dream,” Dodie noted. “Jack has been writing a dozen years for other social media sites (Examiner, AXS Entertainment, Rowdy and News Legit) that have come and gone, so he has an idea what readers want to read.”

“We complement each other well,” Jack said. “Dodie’s ‘Herd it Through the Grapevine’ tips, tidbits and hacks has brought in a whole new segment of readers.”

Most Frequently Asked Questions: Three Each

Jack Dennis

Question 1: How do you get such reliable sources?

I’ve been writing for over 45 years and was a private investigator for eight. Investigation is in my blood and I originally learned the basics from a police homicide detective, my father.

Watching my dad, I developed an instinct for reading people, gaining trust and building rapport. Protect your confidential sources and document facts.

Eventually, your sources bring you more sources. When they know they can trust you, over time, it grows.

Question 2: How do you protect your sources?

Before Obama, it was much easier. There was unprecedented surveillance on reporters like James Rosen. Every phone call, email and movement was monitored.

Today, when I meet sensitive informers, the phones remain behind. Meetings and interviews may take place at a park, golf course or other safe location. No tracking.

Fortunately, most articles don’t require that much extreme.

Question 3: How long does it take to write an article?

It varies. Some can take weeks or months depending on the complexity. If it’s serious, verification takes time. Some sources I’ve learned to trust. Depending on subject matter and sensitivity, I must be aware and keen on secret agendas, covert intentions and the integrity of the source.

I’ve always been a fast and furious writer once I begin typing. I can finish an article quickly. Actually, it’s posting and designing each post that consumes my time.

The key for readers is to simplify complex situations. Don’t try to impress with big words. Just help people understand truth, offer real facts and insight.

Dodie Dennis

Question 1: What is your role for CleverJourneys?

As a nurse, I’m interested in and research health–good food, supplements, herbal remedies and alternative solutions.

My passions are Bible reading, spiritual motivation, family and living simply. The CleverJourneys Creed explains it best.

White Sands, NM

My key role is proofreading. Like Jack says, he is a fast and furious writer. He’s writing even when he’s not typing.  Sometimes he has a multitude of articles buzzing around in his head at the same time. Keeping up and cleaning his copy after him can be a chore.

2. Where do you get your ideas for Herd It Through the Grapevine and why that name?

We live in the beautiful Texas Hill Country. Wildlife is abundant with deer, squirrel, hogs, wildcats, turkey and so much more. 

Also, near us are herds of buffalo, bison, zebras and exotic animals. Well, living in the country, news is spread through the grapevine. So we herd it through the grapevine!

I get my ideas–the tips, tidbits, hacks and trivia–through the grapevine. Just talking with good folks, visiting our local library and learning new ideas is natural.

3. What is your favorite part about CleverJourneys?

I enjoy reading comments and corresponding with our subscribers. Many, we will never meet, but some of our regular readers are like cyber friends.

Dick Clark Theater, Branson MO

When Facebook and other sites banned or censored us, we were initially concerned about losing readership–especially with family and friends. It didn’t happen. We persevered. We grew despite the censorship.

Many of our fellow bloggers are experts and focus on single topics–and they are good. We elected to broaden our offerings and it works. Besides Herd It Through The Grapevine, JackNotes,  Old West Tales, True Crime and Top Ten Memes continue to be favorites in our readership community.

I also like that we have limited advertising–a maximum of three ads per article placed at the end of the copy. We only place ads for businesses and entities we believe in. You can be sure only the best advertise with us and are highly recommended.

___________________________

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From award-winning Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

Which of the 16 Personality Types Are You?

There are 16 Personalities based on the idea proposed and developed by Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother Katherine Briggs around 1960.

They developed this 16 personality type indicator on the theory introduced by Swiss psychiatrist Carl G. Jung.

This test was originally published in 1962, and since then being used to identify the career preferences.

We provide a link to discover your personality. First check these out and guess which personality is yours.

I’m a Protagonist. What are you?

16 personalities letters mean the dominant domain in the personality of the person, e.g. E for Extrovert, I for Introvert, N for Intuitive, S for Sensing, F for feeling, T for thinking, J for judging, and P for perceiving.

The rarest personality type of MBTI is INFJ.

Here are the 16 Types of Personality.


The Inspector ISTJ Personality

From the outset, ISTJs are scaring. They seem genuine, formal, and appropriate. They additionally love conventions and outdated qualities that maintain persistence, challenging work, respect, and social and social obligation. They are saved, quiet, calm, and upstanding. These qualities result from the blend of I, S, T, and J, a personality type that is frequently misjudged.


The Counselor INFJ Personality


INFJs are visionaries and dreamers who overflow innovative, creative minds and splendid thoughts. They have an alternate, and usually increasingly significant, perspective on the world. They have a substance and profundity in the manner they think, never taking anything at surface level or tolerating things how they are. Others may some of the time see them as bizarre or exciting because of their distinctive point of view.

Click here to link 16 Personalities.


The Mastermind INTJ Personality


INTJs, as contemplative people, hush up, saved, and happy with being distant from everyone else. They are generally independent and would prefer to work alone than in a gathering. Mingling channels a contemplative person’s vitality, making them have to energize. INTJs are keen on thoughts and hypotheses. While watching the world, they are continually addressing why things happen how they do. They exceed expectations at creating plans and systems and don’t care for vulnerability.


The Giver ENFJ Personality


ENFJs are individuals centered, people. They are outgoing, optimistic, appealing, straightforward, profoundly principled and moral, and for the most part, realize how to interface with others regardless of their experience or personality. Mostly depending on instinct and emotions, they will, in general, live in their creative mind as opposed to in reality. Rather than concentrating on living in the ‘now’ and what is right now occurring, ENFJs will, in general, focus on the conceptual and what might happen later on.


The Craftsman ISTP Personality

ISTPs are baffling individuals who are typically extraordinarily informed and intelligent, yet besides very unconstrained and excited. Their personality attributes are less effectively conspicuous than those of different sorts, and even individuals who realize them well can’t generally foresee their responses. Where it counts, ISTPs are unconstrained, erratic people; however, they conceal those personality state statistics from the outside world, regularly effectively.


The Provider ESFJ Personality


ESFJs are the cliché social butterflies. They are extroverts, and their need to interface with others and satisfy individuals, for the most part, winds up, making them well known. The ESFJ typically will, in general, be the team promoter or sports saint in secondary school and school. Later on throughout everyday life, they keep on delighting in the spotlight and are fundamentally centered around arranging get-togethers for their families, companions, and networks. ESFJ is a typical personality type and one that is loved by numerous individuals.


The Idealist INFP Personality


INFPs, as most self observers, are peaceful and held. They favour not to discuss themselves, particularly in the first experience with another individual. They like investing energy alone in calm spots where they can comprehend what’s going on around them. They love dissecting signs and images and believe them to be illustrations that have further implications identified with life. They are lost in their creative mind and fantasies, consistently suffocated in the profundity of their considerations, dreams, and thoughts.


The Performer ESFP Personality

ESFPs have an Extraverted, Observant, Feeling, and Perceiving personality, and are generally observed as Entertainers. Destined to be before others and to catch the stage, ESFPs love the spotlight. ESFPs are attentive travelers who enjoy learning and sharing what they realize with others. ESFPs are ‘individuals’ with solid relational abilities. They are enthusiastic and fun and appreciate being the focal point of consideration. They are warm, liberal, and amicable, thoughtful, and worried about others’ prosperity.


The Champion ENFP Personality


ENFPs have an Extraverted, Intuitive, Feeling, and Perceiving personality. This personality type is a profoundly individual statistic, and Champions endeavor toward making their techniques, looks, activities, propensities, and thoughts they don’t care for cutout individuals and loathe when they are compelled to live inside a crate. They like to be around others and have a stable instinctive nature concerning themselves as well as other people. They work from their sentiments more often than not, and they are exceptionally discerning and mindful.


The Doer ESTP Personality


ESTPs have an Extraverted, Sensing, Thinking, and Perceptive personality. ESTPs are represented by the requirement for social cooperation, sentiments and feelings, sensible procedures, and thinking, alongside a need for opportunity. Hypothesis and digests don’t keep ESTP’s intrigued for long. ESTPs jump before they look, fixing their errors as they go, as opposed to sitting inert or getting ready emergency courses of action.


The Supervisor ESTJ Personality

ESTJs are sorted out, legitimate, committed, honorable, customary, and are extraordinary devotees of doing what they accept as correct and socially adequate. Although the ways towards ‘great’ and ‘right’ are troublesome, they are happy to have their spot as the pioneers of the pack. They are the embodiment of a good populace. Individuals look to ESTJs for direction and advice, and ESTJs are always upbeat that they are drawn closer for help.


The Commander ENTJ Personality


An ENTJ’s essential method of living spotlights on outer perspectives, and everything is managed sanely and consistently. Their free way of activity is inward, where instinct and thinking produce results. ENTJs are personality statistic conceived pioneers among the 16 personality types and like being in control. They live in a universe of conceivable outcomes, and they regularly consider difficulties to be obstructions as incredible chances to propel themselves. They appear to have a personality statistic present for the initiative, deciding, and finding alternatives and thoughts rapidly yet cautiously. They are ‘assume responsibility’ individuals who don’t prefer to sit still.

Click here to link 16 Personalities.


The Thinker INTP Personality

INTPs are outstanding for their splendid hypotheses and unwavering rationale, which bodes well since they are ostensibly the most intelligent disapproved of all the personality types. They love designs, have a sharp eye for getting on errors, and a decent capacity to understand individuals, making it an impractical notion to mislead an INTP. Individuals of this personality type aren’t keen on commonsense, everyday exercises, and upkeep, however, when they discover a domain where their innovative virtuoso and potential can be communicated, there is no restriction to the time, and vitality INTPs will consume in building up a perceptive and fair-minded arrangement.


The Nurturer ISFJ Personality


ISFJs are humanitarians, and they are always prepared to give back and return liberality with considerably higher generosity. The individuals and things they put stock in will be maintained and upheld with energy and unselfishness. ISFJs are warm and kind-hearted. They esteem agreement and collaboration and are probably going to be extremely delicate to others’ emotions. Individuals appreciate the ISFJ for their thought and mindfulness, and their capacity to draw out the best in others.


The Visionary ENTP Personality

Those with the ENTP personality are the absolute rarest on the planet, which is totally reasonable. Although they are outgoing individuals, they hate casual chitchat. They may not flourish in numerous social circumstances, particularly those that include individuals who are excessively not the same as the ENTP. ENTPs are keen and proficient should be continually intellectually animated. They can talk about speculations and realities in full detail. They are intelligent, reasonable, and objective in their way of dealing with data and contentions.


The Composer ISFP Personality

ISFPs are thoughtful people that don’t appear loners. It is because regardless of whether they experience issues associating with others from the start, they become warm, agreeable, and amicable inevitably. They are amusing to be with and exceptionally unconstrained, which makes them the ideal companion to follow along in whatever movement, notwithstanding, whenever arranged or spontaneous. ISFPs need to carry on with their life without limit and grasp the present, so they ensure they are always out to investigate new things and find new encounters. It is in an experience that they discover astuteness, so they do see more an incentive in meeting unique individuals than different self observers.

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New Book By Award-winning Author!

Release date August 1, 2021.

Click here for details!

Texas author Cynthia Leal Massey.

12 Lessons From the Best in their Business

The Secret to How Ritz-Carlton, H-E-B, Disney, ClubCorp and Goettl Soar

JackNotes: Summaries of Wisdom

Fortunately, I worked for a remarkable Texas business, H-E-B Food Drugs, from 1980 to 2010 and retired early as an executive over their facilities management organization.

H-E-B invests a great deal in training their employees (known as “Partners”) including customer service all the way. I made certain to retain and use this learning in my personal growth but loved to share it within my department.

Personal significant learning events included Six Sigma Certification, Executive Reinvention by Tracy Goss, Disney University, Project Management, Executive Finance from Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business and so much more.

Working with Clubline at Fair Oaks Ranch Golf & Country Club near San Antonio, I’ve been able to practice what I preach adapting their “Warm Welcomes, Magic Moments, and Fond Farewells” creed.

Like H-E-B, one of the best in their business is Ritz-Carlton. Service is EVERYTHING to them.  It is what defines the chain in their very competitive niche.  This is not to say that other firms that offer similar products do not have as a goal top-level customer service.  They do.  But few execute this as well as the Ritz-Carlton.

Three Steps of Service

It starts with their Three Steps of Service.  These are:

  1. A warm and sincere greeting. Use the guest’s name.  As you walk about you are surprised by the number of times you are actually referred to by your name.  Super simple idea that is sales or marketing 101.  It is, however, very hard to execute on this.  The Ritz-Carlton does this very well.  Find a way to incorporate this into the approach of your staff to your clients.  No one ever heard a better word spoken than their own name.
  2. Anticipation and fulfillment of each guest’s needs.  Your needs are anticipated in advance through questions, and the answers and preferences are recorded for future use.  Don’t like a high floor?  You will probably never be assigned one again.  But this is the easy CRM type stuff.  The difference is a rooms attendant seeing that champagne is in a container with mostly melted ice and immediately returning with ice to refill… anticipation of the need, with no management intervention.
  3. Fond farewell. Give a warm good-bye and use the guest’s name.  As you leave you are graciously thanked by everyone in the lobby area for your stay, and sent on with wishes to see you back as a guest soon. But with them it doesn’t just come from one individual, this comes from at least two other reception staff, from the two executives that are in the lobby awaiting arriving guests, from the many other staff, out the door to the bellman and valet driver, you are experiencing the delivery of an entirely different level of service.

Ladies and Gentlemen

How do the management drill this level of engagement down so that it is authentically delivered without prompting by the entire team?  What gives the staff, the Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen as they are referred to, the OK to boldly step out with imaginative service in ways that seem held at bay with other companies despite their best intentions?

I am sure there are many more points but this list of 12 ‘Service Values‘ give clues.  Read this list and where it says ‘Ritz-Carlton’ change that name for your company or personal brand.

Change also the word ‘guest’ to client or customer, as for most readers that is probably more relevant anyway.

The list of 12 starts with a declaration of the corporate mindset that you, the employee, are proud TO BE Ritz-Carlton.  The brand, the experience, IS YOU.  

This is reinforced by the following:

  1. I build strong relationships and create Ritz-Carlton guests for life
  2. I am always responsive to the expressed and unexpressed wishes and needs of our guests.
  3. I am empowered to create unique, memorable and personal experiences for our guests.
  4. understand my role in achieving the Key Success Factors, embracing Community Footprints and creating The Ritz-Carlton Mystique.
  5. I continuously seek opportunities to innovate and improve The Ritz-Carlton experience.
  6. own and immediately resolve guest problems.
  7. create a work environment of teamwork and lateral service so that the needs of our guests and each other are met.
  8. I have the opportunity to continuously learn and grow.
  9. I am involved in the planning of the work that affects me.
  10. I am proud of my professional appearancelanguage and behavior.
  11. protect the privacy and security of our guests, my fellow employees and the company’s confidential information and assets.
  12. I am responsible for uncompromising levels of cleanliness and creating a safe and accident-free environment.
Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe

These are reviewed continually.  It is not enough, as most companies do, to have an orientation meeting or two, give the employee the manual, and think the job is done.    Daily focus is paid to one of these service values.  It is as if the life of the company depends on it.  Guess what? It does!

Without this the Ritz-Carlton is just another luxury brand chain, H-E-B is just another grocery and gas store and Goettl Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing would only be defining themselves by the facilities, the amenities, the products and services they sell. 

Fire Your Boss: Book Summary via JackNotes

JackNotes In a Nutshell

The Pandemic Year of 2020 taught millions of Americans about job security. After the presidential election and inauguration, the current resident of the White House immediately starting cutting jobs. Soon America was turned into a tailspin of insecurity, socialistic handouts, free rides for illegal immigrants, laxed border protection and both domestic and foreign problems.

Fire Your Boss was written by Stephen M. Pollan and Mark Levine Publisher: Harper Collins, 2004

This book helps some learn how to look for new employment, choose among numerous job offers, and thrive in this economy. You will find out why it is not beneficial to keep relying on your boss for financial security and job satisfaction. Here are my summary notes from Fire Your Boss.

You must rely on yourself !

The Job of Your Dreams .

Believe it or not, you can take charge of your career. You don’t have to keep worrying that your job security depends on the whims or moods of your current boss. The job of your dreams is within your reach. In fact, you can even transform your current job into that dream job.

Seven Steps to Gain Control of Your Work Life :

  1. Fire Your Boss… and Hire Yourself.

2. Kill Your Career… and Get a Job

3. There’s No “I” in Job .

4. Go Fish

5. No One Hires a Stranger.

6. It’s the Money That Counts.

7. Hello, I Must be Going.

Fire Your Boss… and Hire Yourself >The first thing you must do to get the job of your dreams is to fire your boss and hire yourself. To do this, you must not allow your boss control what happens in your career. You must take charge of your work life. Firing your boss is a mental exercise. You should not walk into your boss’ office tomorrow and demand a resignation. Even if you have fired your boss and hired yourself as a manager, you must appear as loyal and as dedicated as ever. This time, you’ll be determining your own value. You will be setting your own goals. You will be in charge of selecting the skills you wish to attain. You will also have your own personal work plan. To start doing this, you must undergo a process of self-examination.

Write your own job description > Write a brief description of your job. However, do not align yourself with a certain company, profession or specialization. Reflect on what you do each day and each week. Give yourself a performance review. Find out what other people with the same job description earn. Also find out the skills that are valued in this certain field. Define alternate courses. After you have done the two steps above, you will realize that there are alternate courses available to you. Brainstorm about all the other fields and occupations that would suit the job description that you created. Put your plan into writing. Develop your own plan for your work life. Remember that your future plans should not hinder the alternate courses you have defined. Note down the new skills you need to acquire.

Kill Your Career… and Get a Job >Most people don’t see their jobs as emotionally satisfying. In fact, most people work because they need to put food on the table. Killing your career does not mean quitting. Rather, it means that you should stop looking for emotional satisfaction in your job. Instead, look for a job that provides a large and secure income. Reserve the search for emotional satisfaction to your personal life. You should stop thinking of your work as a career. It is far healthier to view it as a job. Ask “Why Do I Work?”

Usually, there are eight reasons why people work: power. / respect. / security. / travel. /serve. / meet people. / express yourself. / money.

You must learn to derive satisfaction outside work, and basically expect only Money from your WORK. You must earn respect off the job, find security away from work, and travel for pleasure (and not for business). If you are working to meet people, remember that there are far better places that are more suitable for making friends.

There’s No I in Job > You must realize that you have been lied to. In the past, you have been told that to succeed in your career, you must show up on time and work as hard as you can. You were also promised that you would be rewarded if you show up early, work all day, and stay late at night. Even if you have been a model employee, your job is not secure. You must realize that people act in their own self-interest and not in the company’s interest. Instead, to succeed in your career, you must stop focusing on your own success and start worrying about your boss’ success instead.

The best thing you can do is to help your boss meet his goals. This is the best path towards job security. If you make your boss look good to others, you will look good to your boss.

Six Personality Types of Bosses and What They Want

The buddy

He wants to be one of the guys. Have lunch with your boss every time he asks and ask him sometimes as well. Include him in your group activities.

The loner

He wants to do his job and not be bothered with anything else. Help your boss stay away from other people. Offer to attend weekly meetings on his behalf. Volunteer to teach the new hire.

The stickler

He follows the rules and wants everyone to do the same. Follow the rules. Show up on time and dress the same way he does. Do things by the book even if you think it might hamper productivity.

The glory seeker

He needs to be the hero. Make sure that all of your triumphant efforts are reflected on your boss. Always ask him for advice. Compliment him on both actions and appearance.

The fighter

A boss who needs conflict. Do not allow yourself to be a target. Offer scapegoats and divert his attention to other potential targets.

The coward

He is always afraid. You must help your boss by eliminating anything that may cause fear. Offer to take the blame for something that has gone wrong.

Go Fish >Today, you can get laid off even if you are doing a good job. To make matters worse, the job market has been so tumultuous that getting a good job is now harder than ever. You must turn job hunting into a proactive and ongoing part of your life at work. After all, nowadays, employees are hired to get fired or replaced. You must learn to cultivate as many offers of employment possible. This will allow you to choose the job that is best for you.

You must stop hunting for one specific job. Instead, fish for as many jobs as possible and look at everything that bites. Then decide which jobs you can take, and which ones you can throw back.

How to Act During Job Interviews >Make sure that you are dressed neatly and that you are well-groomed. Do not wear too much perfume or jewelry. Arrive on time. Smile. Shake hands firmly. Make eye contact. Do not sit until you are invited to. Do not slouch, cross your arms or legs or touch your face.

No One Hires a Stranger >Networking is not as effective as it used to be. Nowadays, business executives are aware when they are approached by individuals who are using networking as a disguise for a job hunt. Instead of relying on networking, you must learn to turn to your personal life when seeking job opportunities. Become active in your church or pursue a new hobby. Go to social activities whenever you can. Of course, you can not rely on personal contacts alone when you are on a job hunt. Take advantage of old-fashioned methods such as answering help wanted ads and visiting employment agencies.

Appearance Counts>Always make sure that you are wearing something clean and appropriate. Furthermore, be conscious of your manners when you are meeting with people. The best way to make friends is to smile and to look people in the eyes.

Engaging with Strangers >Here are some tips you can use when talking with people you have just met: Ask questions. Listen closely and don’t interrupt. Don’t argue or disagree. Avoid frowning. If you can’t draw the other person into talking about himself, talk about something you share. When asked to share about yourself, do not take too long. Make sure you do not one-up the other person.

It’s the Money That Counts >Companies nowadays are trying to lure employees into their folds by offering non-monetary benefits. These perks include health club memberships, company-owned cafeterias, and even concierge services. You must not forget, however, that your main reason for getting a job must be to increase your stream of income. Rewards that do not affect you financially are useless.

You need to get a job that pays the most money possible. When choosing between job offers, you must take into consideration and Isolate the Factors That Are No Longer Important : Amenities /Auto (car) /Challenging /Culture /Disability insurance /Environment /Expense allowance Health insurance /Income /Life insurance /Opportunity for advancement /Opportunity for learning /Paid time off /Proximity /Retirement plan //Stability /Status /Title /Tuition reimbursement /Unpaid time off

Hello, I Must Be Going >Now that you know that your departure is inevitable, you must plan for it. Think of the reasons why you would want to leave your current job. Think of negative developments that can force you to leave. Think of other jobs and the positive attributes they might have that can cause you to jump ship.

Leave Before You Are Pushed Out >Your job is not secure. Remember that if you leave your current company out of your own accord, you will receive better offers.

The Life of Your Dreams >Remember, you can turn your work life around. By firing your boss and hiring yourself as manager, you cease to depend on other people for job satisfaction. You can increase your income, spend less time at work, and have more time for your family. By finding the job of your dreams, you can have the life of your dreams.

JackNotes: The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker Summary

When reading up on management, you can’t help but come across the name of Peter F. Drucker.  

He wrote 30+ books on the topic and his teachings are integrated deep within business practices many are familiar with today. 

Not only did he coin the term, “knowledge worker,” but many of the quotes being thrown around the web today came from him or his books as well:

The best way to predict the future is to create it.

Time is the scarcest resource and unless it is managed nothing else can be managed.

There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.

It isn’t enough for an executive nowadays to simply get things done. It’s more important to know how to get the right things done and to prioritize effectiveness, not just efficiency. As with productivity, find out where your time goes, focus on contribution, and put first things first. 

________________________________

The Summary

Effective executives follow the same 8 practices:

  1. Ask “What needs to be done?”
  2. Ask “What is right for the enterprise?”
  3. Develop action plans
  4. Take responsibility for decisions
  5. Take responsibility for communicating
  6. Focus on opportunities rather than problems
  7. Run productive meetings
  8. Think and say “we” rather than “I”

The 5 habits of an effective executive:

  1. Know Thy Time
  2. Focus on Contribution
  3. Make Strengths Productive
  4. First Things First
  5. Effective Decisions

The 5 habits of an effective executive:

  1. Know Thy Time. Effective executives know where their time goes and work systematically at managing it
  2. What Can I Contribute? Effective executives focus on outward contribution
  3. Making Strengths Productive.Effective executives build on strengths—their own, their superiors, colleagues, and subordinates; and on the strengths in the situation, that is, on what they can do
  4. First Things First. Effective executives concentrate on the few major areas where superior performance will produce outstanding results
  5. Effective Decisions. They know that this is a matter of system, the right steps in the right sequence

Effective executives know that time is the limiting factor.

To be effective, every knowledge worker needs to be able to dispose of time in fairly large chunks. To have small dribs and drabs of time at his disposal will not be sufficient even if the total is an impressive number of hours.

The 3-step process to manage time:

  1. Record. Find out where your time actually goes
  2. Manage. Cut back unproductive demands on your time
  3. Consolidate. “Discretionary” time into the largest possible continuing units

Every organization needs performance in 3 major areas:

  • Direct results
  • The building of values and their reaffirmation
  • Building and developing people for tomorrow

The man who asks of himself, “What is the most important contribution I can make to the performance of this organization?” asks in effect, “What self-development do I need? What knowledge and skill do I have to acquire to make the contribution I should be making? What strengths do I have to put to work? What standards do I have to set myself?”

How to have an Effective Meeting:

  • Know what to expect to get out of a meeting and what the purpose of the occasion is or should be
  • State at the outset of a meeting the specific purpose and contribution it is to achieve
  • At the end of the meeting, always go back to the opening statement and relate the final conclusions to the original intent

Staffing from Strength

Fill positions and promote on the basis of what a person can do. Do not make staffing decisions to minimize weaknesses but to maximize strength.

Effective executives know that their subordinates are paid to perform and not to please their superiors.

The 4 rules to staff for strength:

  1. Any job that has defeated two or three men in succession, even though each had performed well in his previous assignments, must be redesigned
  2. Make each job demanding and big
  3. Start with what a man can do rather than with what a job requires
  4. To get strength, one has to put up with weaknesses

Staffing the opportunities instead of the problems not only creates the most effective organization, it also creates enthusiasm and dedication.

Conversely, it is the duty of the executive to remove ruthlessly anyone—and especially any manager—who consistently fails to perform with high distinction. To let such a man stay on corrupts the others.

Effective executives periodically review their work programs—and those of their associates—and ask: “If we did not already do this, would we go into it now?” And unless the answer is an unconditional Yes, they drop the activity or curtail it sharply.

The executive who wants to be effective and who wants his organization to be effective polices all programs, all activities, all tasks. He always asks: “Is this still worth doing?”

And if it isn’t, he gets rid of it so as to be able to concentrate on the few tasks that, if done with excellence, will really make a difference in the results of his own job and in the performance of his organization. 

Systematic sloughing off of the old is the one and only way to force the new.

Priorities and Posteriorities

There are always more productive tasks for tomorrow than there is time to do them and more opportunities than there are capable people to take care of them—not to mention the always abundant problems and crises.

A decision has to be made as to which tasks deserve priority and which are of less importance. The only question is which will make the decision—the executive or the pressures.

If the pressures rather than the executive are allowed to make the decision, the important tasks will predictably be sacrificed.

The job is, however, not to set priorities. That is easy. Everybody can do it. The reason why so few executives concentrate is the difficulty of setting “posteriorities”—that is, deciding what tasks not to tackle—and of sticking to the decision.

Courage rather than analysis dictates the truly important rules for identifying priorities:

  • Pick the future as against the past
  • Focus on opportunity rather than on the problem
  • Choose your own direction—rather than climb on the bandwagon
  • Aim high, aim for something that will make a difference, rather than for something that is “safe” and easy to do

The 5 Elements of the Decision Process:

  1. Ask if it’s a generic situation or an exception
  2. Clear “boundary conditions” as to what the decision has to accomplish
  3. Start with what is right rather than what is acceptable
  4. Convert the decision into action
  5. Build feedback into the decision

Effective Decisions

A decision is a choice between alternatives. It is rarely a choice between right and wrong.

Executives who make effective decisions know that one does not start with facts. One starts with opinions.

People inevitably start out with an opinion; to ask them to search for the facts first is even undesirable. They will simply look for the facts that fit the conclusion they have already reached. And no one has ever failed to find the facts he is looking for.

The effective executive encourages opinions. He then asks: “What do we have to know to test the validity of this hypothesis?” The people who voice an opinion also need to take responsibility for fact-finding.

“What is the criterion of relevance?”This turns on the measurement appropriate to the matter under discussion and to the decision to be reached.

The best way to find the appropriate measurement is again to go out and look for the “feedback” —only this is “feedback” before the decision.

The first rule in decision-making is that one does not make a decision unless there is disagreement.

The executive who wants to make the right decision forces himself to see opposition as his means to think through the alternatives.

The final question the effective decision-maker asks: “Is a decision really necessary?” There’s always the alternative of doing nothing.

If the answer to “What will happen if we do nothing?” is “It will take care of itself,” one does not interfere.

JackNotes