Chicago Thanksgiving Week 2017

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Our rural ancestors, with little blest,
Patient of labour when the end was rest,
Indulged the day that housed their annual grain,
With feasts, and off’rings, and a thankful strain.
Alexander Pope  

From Chicago this Thanksgiving Week, I hope you enjoy this American holiday, whether you are with family, or friends, or on your own . . .perhaps these Chicago pics will remind you how we are one as these pictures can be seen by us all.  Happy Thanksgiving!

As you Choose who You Want to be known as this week, Enjoy the holiday!

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach

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Note:  The above quotation is found at http://www.http://www.wow4u.com/qthankfulness/

All pictures displayed above were shot from my Apple 7 camera this morning.

What’s Your October Learning

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This month of October, on a National basis, is about Learning in business as well as remembering our heritage. Polish American, Italian American, Hispanic Heritage and German Heritage all celebrate their ancestry background this month.

It’s also National Cyber Security Awareness Month https://www.boozallen.com/c/insight/thought-leadership/booz-allen-kicks-off-national-cybersecurity-awareness-month-2017.html and National Women’s Small Business Month https://www.nwbc.gov/news/10-million-strong-october-council-celebrates-national-women%E2%80%99s-small-business-month. The Balance website hosts an extensive list for you to choose a favorite event: https://www.thebalance.com/october-is-national-month-calendar-3514993

Here in Chicago, events during the year have all led to the celebration of Chicago Ideas Week http://chicagoideas.com from October 16th through October 22. As an example, Professor Marcelo Gleiser, Director the Institute for Cross-Disciplinary Engagement at Dartmouth College spoke at a Symposium on the Future of Intelligence: Human, Machine and Extraterrestrial, sponsored by Chicago Ideas. He asked the question, “Are we engineering our own destruction through technology when we speak about artificial intelligence?” It’s an ethical and scientific dilemma because our intelligence is really about how we move from our present world to the future, including all that’s dark and dangerous, to creating a future that is just and equitable for all society.

As mentioned earlier, this month of October celebrates who we are as a society because all that we have around us places us in a state of constant Learning from the daily occurrences in our lives, both personally and in business. Within the past 30 days of our lives we have experienced or witnessed more tragedy in the USA, than was ever presented before, in non-war time. We mourn all those who left this earth and keep the survivors in our good thoughts for recovery.

Earlier this week, I attended an online Webinar where like-minded people shared their views about our profession and how we can Learn from one another’s experiences. It is because of that discussion that I would like to share with you some ideas for change management in your career. I prepared the format this week and it is based on a business presentation, hosted by the University of Chicago back in 2001. It’s pretty straight forward and timely in today’s environment. Here it is:

As you Choose Who You Want to be Known As during this Learning month, consider how the survivors demonstrated their strength of character and became the best examples of USA humanity for us all.

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach
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Processing Mindfulness on a Sunday Morning

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I’ve  a grand memory for forgetting – Robert Louis Stevenson via BrainyQuote

 

Personal values of using the Laundry Room are similar to the use of the small office refrigerator, i.e. forgetfulness.     It happens on an early Sunday morning.  You fill two washing machines which are side by side, and each has a 27-minute timer.  You leave for a few minutes and return to see one machine has reached 16 minutes and the other is stuck at 25 minutes.  After a short phone call, you remove the wet clothes and fill another machine.

More than half of the 14 dryers are still full of dried clothes as well as the folding table.  If you are a people watcher, you might enjoy reading that a 20-30 something man enters the Laundry Room.  He bends down in front of a dryer and removes some of the dried clothes.  He leaves knowing he still has dried clothes in the dryer.   Forgetfulness happens at all ages [smile].

Have a mindful Sunday in you activities as you Choose Who You Want to be Known As.   “Jo Ann” M. Radja

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More Questions to Consider. . .

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In order for an organization to stay healthy, its members must have a clear sense of who they are and what they can accomplish…in terms of a product they make or… in terms of a service they perform.  Members must feel they have a share in it.   Fred Pearson

Earlier today, I published a post entitled, “What’s YOUR Question Today?” at LinkedIn Pulse  https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/whats-your-question-today-jo-ann-m-radja    The subject matter was innovation, feedback from the world’s largest architectural firm founder, Arthur Gensler and  a change management Design Group Study Guide from the University of Chicago.   A number of questions were posted from the Design Group Study Guide.  I would like to share with you additional questions because they acknowledge how you may be able to work through different perspectives in a group or team.  Here they are:

What expectations do the leaders have for the group/team?  Is there a match with the expectations of the team?  Are the expectations in line with the agreed goal of the project?  If not, is it time for the group/team to agree an expectation has a place to be articulated in the group and may be unrealistic.

“How do your attitudes compare with the team members?  Are your observational skills improving?  Are your skills at listening to others, and asking effective questions, getting better?   How were you influenced by others, for the better,  in the group/team?”

“What skills do Group Leaders need to get the job accomplished?  What skills do group members need to work together?  How has your participation in the group/team increased your understanding of your company and your place within the company?”

Personal growth will only be realized when you recognize what was difficult for you, your lack of understanding of an issue, or dealing with another person, or making a tough decision.  No one ever said self-development was easy and that’s why we love to do better by stretching ourselves in our careers!  Have a great week.

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive &  Career Management Coach

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What’s Your BEST Daily Change?

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changeandsocrates-enhanced-buzz-3685-1366095362-11-102116-viapinterest-com

 

It was cold and dreary this morning and yet, a few hours later, it is brisk outside and full of sunshine.  Was this a change in opposites or just a 180 degree change of outlook – (from which we had no input)?

Change  is in the air this Friday in October. The Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Dodgers are in a Pennant race. Halloween is around the corner. Night football is played on television, and many businesses are gearing up for the last quarter of the year and we find ourselves “right in the middle of it all.”

If  we want to focus on one item in our career development before our life becomes more hectic than it already is – what would that be?  In other words, What’s your Best daily change?  Here are some thoughts on this subject:

Choose a path to stretch yourself, or:

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safeboundaries-enhanced-buzz-22855-1366095705-3-viatumbler-102116

change-pixabayfreeimage-from-john-hain-102116stream-1106336_960_720However you define your Best daily change, I hope it becomes intertwined with how You Choose how you want to be Known As.  Have a great Day and Weekend!

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach

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balancing-rock-1273567_960_720Pixabay072916The resolution:  A change.  Progress.  A transformaation.   Michael Port

Earlier today LinkedIn Pulse published a Post for me entitled:  “What’s Your Takeaway?” https://lnkd.in/dSPzdHZ by @Coach_Jo_Ann on @LinkedIn.

It’s a challenge for many of us to quickly embrace a new pattern, a new procedure, workplace situations we may not initially want.  It is especially so after when we have committed ourselves to a project, put in the time and energy only to learn the project was “pulled.”  It is our resilience that keeps us going and will do so during the balance of this year.

As You Choose Who You Want to be Known As, all the best to you in your career as you welcome the month of August, next week!

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach

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When Mindfulness leads to Emotional Intelligence. . .

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stick_figure_balance_mind_heart_md_wm Bing 052016At the heart of great leadership is a curious mind, heart, and spirit.   Chip Conley via Brainy quote.com

Over the past few days, I’ve read a number of blogs from Social Media Influencers and Government Leaders.  Stories emerged of how dysfunction not only causes breakdowns in communication but reason takes a backseat at a place of work.  We may become a bystander to a discussion that causes us to become very uncomfortable and we don’t wish to enter the “fray.”

Some four years ago I was attending a Networking Event and was participating in a conversation between two men who were consultants.  One man was from the East Coast and the other lived in a Chicago suburb.  Another man, unknown to us, walked up and asked if he could join our group.  We welcomed him (the black coat man) and he asked me about my business – that conversation led me to give him a sample coaching session.  The man was eager and surprised himself by telling me something he had not told his wife; he was uncomfortable with the disclosure and decided to walk away.  The two consultants offered that I shouldn’t have given my time to someone who clearly wasn’t appreciative of joining our discussion group.

What happened next was an example of personal mindfulness.  The black coat man walked around the room and said to more than a handful of people, “You see that woman in the red jacket [meaning me] she won’t talk to me.”   People began to ask, “Do you know that man?”   It was unclear to many why the black coat man continued his pointing at me and saying she won’t talk to me.

Mindfulness allow you to become aware of your surroundings, what you are thinking, what you are feeling and what these sensations mean to you at that moment.  Emotional Intelligence is a learned process where mindfulness forms the basis for you to manage yourself and by doing so, manage others.  As you manage your emotions you are able to assist someone else likewise.  Put another way, you observe what is happening around you, describe what it means to you, accept that someone else has something going on causing a disturbance, don’t take it personally and don’t become judgmental.  While it may seem like a balancing act between your mind and your heart, in fact, it is a process that allow you control over how you are in the moment.  The image above displays the end result of mind and heart balance – when you are comfortable in the emotional intelligence realm. 

Emotional intelligence is a process and it most definitely can be learned.  How you act in the moment is what I call, Choose Who You Want to be Known As.”   Since today is the last day of June we have another beginning in our imperfect world tomorrow on July 1st.  Have a great month of July in your chosen career path!

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach

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A Common Place Term: Bystander

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diffusion-responsibility-bystander-effect-illustration-crowd-witness-act-crime-doing-nothing-47422863It’s in the news recently, the term Bystander Effect or Bystander Action.  It’s the principle – when in a group of people, personal responsibility to assist/help someone is mostly not recognized.  Last week on March 30th,  the following post was published on Linkedin.com/Pulse on this subject:  https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/its-catching-now-understanding-jo-ann-m-radja

imageslookfordiagnosisdotcomPreviousNextbystandereffect040516

The issues of Bystander Actions are present in our society at all levels.  Vice President Joe Biden has been involved in a Bystander action prevention program to discourage violence on college campuses and is planning to visit Pittsburg, PA today: http://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2016/04/05/Vice-President-Joe-Biden-in-Pittsburgh-today-for-It-s-On-Us-campaign/stories/201604050156  and the photo, to the left, is from the website:  www.lookfordiagnosis.com/mesh_info.php?term=Bystander+Effect&lang=1

Since WordPress.com represents the spirit of collegiality, I would like to share with you my September, 2015 presentation notes on Bystander Actors in the workplace.  It was prepared for a specific industry and is easily updated to fit any industry.  Included within the presentation are insights of Professor Mary Rowe from MIT, Senior Advisor – Compliance Strategist and Attorney, Joe Murphy, and Margaret Heffernan, Author of: Why We Ignore the Obvious to Our Peril, Willful Blindness.

As you Choose Who You Want to be Known As, have a great work week!

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach

Notes: Understanding Bystander Actions by Jo Ann M. Radja with Insights from Dr. Mary Rowe Ph.D September, 2015

Scenarios attachment   and  Bibliography and Resources

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Culture Diversity Awareness Perspective

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Be forceful with yourself, learn to integrate the negative, harnessing its force to cross the boundaries that would confine you.  John O’Donohue

Earlier today I published the following post: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/weekend-cultural-perspective-jo-ann-m-radja for your weekend reading. . . thPZBEH363 Easter Tree Egg BING 032416

“Most of us read daily – reports, emails, online newspapers, LinkedIn posts, etc. A Spring surprise occurs when you click on a post and a brief read becomes memorable because it provides a new perspective.  The document I read is a brief read and is a take-away from a Nonviolent Leadership for Social Justice Retreat, written by Shameless Heart Coach, Marina Smerling.

Very simply, we are reminded to look into ourselves first.  Pay attention to what emotions are bubbling up in you when a trigger of words are spoken.  You begin the conversation because you know yourself very well.  And yet, an unconscious bias is trying to take hold in you while you want to control your reaction to the trigger of words.  A practice of not helping someone who didn’t ask for help may be the key to handle a trigger of words.  The issue is not the trigger itself, it is how are you handling yourself in the situation.  What are YOU paying attention to within yourself.

A perspective of how to handle yourself is to reach out as an ally.  As an ally you take away the “rank and privilege” connotation.  “I am your ally” is welcoming and creates a space that answers the question, “Why are your here?”

The photo above depicts a cultural practice of an Easter Tree.  What? you might say. Why would someone want to do that?  Perhaps it is another opportunity to understand the diversity in our community that believes the Easter Eggs represent new beginnings.  New beginnings is a universal concept that each of the member Coaches of the LinkedIn Group: Coaches for Equality and Diversity (CED) represent to foster understanding of these issues and its dynamics to the world at large.

 So what new beginnings during this Spring Season are you contemplating, as you Choose Who You Want to be Known As?   Whatever holiday you practice during the 2016 Spring Season, have a Happy Holiday!

“Jo Ann” M. Radja

Martha Lasley, Co-Founder of Leadership That Works, posted in the CED Group Marina Smerling’s document; written permission to share it with you was  given by Coach Smerling via Coach Lasley: http://www.leadershipthatworks.com/documentFiles/665.pdf

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“Taming the Judgment”

snowy-white-owlBING120213This post was originally published on October 24, 2014 by the social media platform LinkedIn at:  http://www.linkedin.com/pulse/article/20141024202444-32215190-weekend-thoughts-taming-the-judgment?trk=mp-edit-rr-posts

“Weekend Thoughts — Taming the Judgment

A few months ago, I finished reading a book by Margaret J. Wheatley: Turning to one another. Simple Conversations to restore hope in the future (2009). Ms. Wheatley follows the principle of Occam’s Razor – the simplest answer appears to be the right answer. What’s the simplest task we all share – communicating. “It’s not the differences that divide us. It’s our judgments about each other that do.” If we think about the last time we may have rolled our eyes or became quiet while listening to someone, what judgment did we have that caused the rolling of the eyes or the quietness. How did that emotion (underlying judgment) stop a positive conversation from beginning or continuing?

Let’s face it. We sometimes are not at our best in handling a situation. I may be biased because I like Chicago Pizza more than New York or California Pizza. Yet, I can appreciate and learn the uniqueness of each presentation of Pizza and the different ingredients. Once we recognize the bias for what it is, it helps to tame the judgment directing our actions, to allow anopen conversation to understand another’s perspective. Mr. Wheatley’s Turning to One Another is an enlightening process of understanding ourselves more than we might initially realize.

As you Choose Who You Want to be Known As, when a recent conversation didn’t go as well as you may have wanted, consider what you wanted to have happen. Was there an underlying judgment you may have had about the subject matter, or how the other person spoke or presented his viewpoint? An unconscious judgment can be tamed, once we identify it. The issue becomes, do you want to? How will it help you as you manage your career? ”

“Jo Ann” M. Radja, Executive and Career Management Coach

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