Quiz: Who Are You – a Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda or the one who Did?

Quiz - who are you

How do you become your best self at work? The first step is to tune into how you navigate your career. Are you someone who dwells in the past or do you keep an open mind when a new opportunity comes your way? Do you find regrets are preventing you from building a future? 

Small steps can be very effective in the journey towards change. Which is why “Those Woulda-Coulda-Shouldas/All Ran Away And Hid/From One Little Did” in the Shel Silverstein poem.

Go Out & Be

Take our quiz to find out whether you’re a Woulda-Coulda-Shoulda or the one who just goes out and makes things happen.

  1. When you get a great idea, you: 
    A. Immediately think back on all the other great ideas that you’ve had 
    B. Don’t act
    C. Ask yourself why you didn’t think of it a month or two earlier
    D. Make it happen

    2. Discussing your career with co-workers, the conversation is usually about:
    A. All the mistakes you have made that derailed your professional growth
    B. How unhappy you are in your current job and how desperate you are for a change
    C. Giving up on your dream career for a financially stable career
    D. Encouraging them to take action and see possibilities that they may not be able to see by themselves

    3. How much importance do you see in doing versus talking?
    A. None at all
    B. A little bit
    C. Enough to feel sorry you didn’t take action sooner 
    D. You place a lot of importance in doing what you say you are going to do

    4. You hear of a job opening in a company you’ve dreamt of working for. You:
    A. Think about how it’s never worked out for you before
    B. Feel you don’t deserve it, so you put off applying for the job
    C. Conjure up all of the “what ifs” that your mind will allow as you watch the opportunity slip by
    D. Don’t put it off or wait another second. Get it done!

    5. When you make a commitment, do you always keep it?
    A. No, because in your experience, people don’t really keep promises 
    B. You start with good intentions, but then, things happen, you know?
    C. You realise you shouldn’t have done it, and are experiencing a mix of guilt, inadequacy, panic and fear. 
    D. 100% always

    6. How much of your to-do list do you accomplish?
    A. Nothing, since making lists has never been your jam
    B. Very little, because it appears enormous and overwhelming
    C. You’ve ploughed through half but are filled with self-reproach that you haven’t done it all 
    D. Almost all the boxes are ticked off

    7. You’re mid-way through a project when things start to fail. Your first reaction is:
    A. To blame situations and people.
    B. ‘I’ll deal with it later’.
    C. ‘I never should have signed up for this task’.
    D. To focus on action you can take that will move the project forward.

    8. When you find out that you’ve been passed over for a promotion, you:
    A. Wonder why these things always happen to you
    B. Feel disheartened, but make no attempt to understand what went wrong.
    C. Think you should have worked harder to achieve it.
    D. Try and understand where you went wrong and work on changing it.

    9. When you talk about the last great idea you had, your friends react by:
    A. Mimicking your words, since this isn’t the first time you’ve walked them down memory lane
    B. Roll their eyes, because they know you’re just rambling
    C. They listen half-heartedly because they know the story ends with disappointment.
    D. You believe talking about your plans is a waste of time. You just action them.

    10. Which of these slogans best describes you:
    A. ‘One of the best ways to make yourself happy in the present is to recall happy times from the past.’
    B. ‘If it weren’t for the last minute, nothing would get done.’
    C. ‘Regrets are idle; yet history is one long regret. Everything might have turned out so differently.’ 
    D. ‘Just #GoOutAndBe’

    So how did you score? If you’re: 

    Mostly A’s – You’re a WOULDA
    You seem to be a person who likes to dwell on the past. And although our experiences do help us grow and become stronger, focusing your energies on memories of the past instead of living in the present could actually be keeping you from success. It’s time you learn how to let go and focus on the here and now—you’ll be surprised at what you can achieve when you pursue your goals without the distraction of nostalgia. 

    Mostly B’s – You’re a COULDA
    Whether you’re overwhelmed or striving for perfection, you’re someone with a tendency to procrastinate. And while there is a school of thought that believes procrastination might actually be good for you, the fact remains that it has more bad influences on a person’s life than good. So what’s the best way to break the habit? Identify the specific areas where you are procrastinating and map out the steps required to achieve your goal.

    Mostly C’s – You’re a SHOULDA
    Regret is probably a looming presence your life—either because something did or did not go your way. Today, you’re replaying the scenarios over and over in your head—and want to be able to rewind time and get a do-over.
    But consistently looking behind and wishing for the impossible could be keeping you from noticing what is right in front of you and making the most of impending opportunities. So ask yourself what you need to do to support yourself in moving forward.

    Mostly D’s – You’re an ACTION person!
    We should all aspire to be this type of person who will #GoOutAndBe. You live completely in the here and now and make informed decisions from one moment to the next. You don’t brood over consequences for long; you quickly grasp all the relevant facts, make a pragmatic decision and enforce that decision vigorously. You keep a clear head even in difficult situations.

It’s time to #GoOutAndBe for A’s, B’s and C’s. Millions of Jobs. Find Yours. Upload your resume to Find Better.

Want to know how well your current job scores on the Love-o-Meter? Click here.


Beauty and the Beast – 5 career lessons you can learn

5 Career Lessons from Beauty and the Beast

Tale as old as time…

The hit movie that is sweeping the world at the moment is Disney’s remake of Beauty and the Beast. The classic tale has strong themes of love, appearances, community, identity and exile, which teach us a lot about how we view other people and how we live our lives. But what about our careers?

Yep, even in a tale about a young French girl and a seemingly ‘hideous’ beast, we can find teachings to help us navigate our work lives.

To stop your career from crumbling if the last petal falls, follow these lessons from the hit Disney movie.

1. Never stop learning

Belle, the gorgeous but “odd” girl from a small French village, is obsessed with books. In a province where women are expected to simply get married and live their lives out doting on a family, Belle is determined to read, learn and digest information. And once she’s in the freaky mansion and trapped by the Beast, she passes on her knowledge to him. Belle teaches the Beast about kindness, compassion, seeing the best in people, and also how to eat soup with a spoon. Learning is a 360-degree thing!

2. Take a chance every now and then

The magic of Disney tells us that the best things can happen when we least expect it to. For Belle, she would have never expected to fall in love with the Beast who kept her a prisoner, but she took a chance on him, and look how it turned out. Sure, it may be a bit Stockholm Syndrome-esque, but we prefer to analyse it as taking a leap of faith.

In your career, it may not always be clear what your true path is, but if you open your mind to the situation you find yourself in, great things can happen. So #GoOutAndBe!

3. Look beyond the exterior

Also can be interpreted as “don’t judge a book by its cover”. The Beast, of course, is a beast – but is he, really? Prejudice is something we all have to actively fight in the workplace – whether it’s to do with something like believing a rumour about your boss, or something broader like dealing with unconscious bias and sexism. Don’t let appearances rule your decisions.

Sure, a company you’re interviewing with might not have a big name for themselves, but until you find out more information how will you know whether it’s the right fit for you? It could end up being the job of your dreams.

4. Always have a sidekick

Lumiere has Cogsworth. Mrs Potts has Chip. Even Gaston has LeFou. Everyone needs a sidekick, or a buddy.

At the office, it’s important you have people who are always on your side, acting as pillars of support, mentors, and friends. Considering how much time we spend at the office, it’s important to build a sort of ‘family’ there, so always try your hardest to get to know people and form solid, authentic relationships.

5. Don’t let fear hold you back!

Don’t be afraid of being different, having different ideas, or not conforming to expectations. Belle wasn’t the kind of girl her village expected her to be; her father, Maurice, was considered “weird” because he was slightly eccentric, and the Beast was considered to be a horrible, grizzling monster simply because of the way he looked (and the fact he lived in a creepy castle.) But Gaston – the sexist, rude and fairly hideous human being who tries his hardest to woo Belle – is seen as an absolutely charmer by the rest of the village, because he’s good looking. And look how things turned out for him…

Point is, you should never feel bad because you might be different. In the workplace, different is good. A strong office culture needs a variety of people with unique ideas and way of tackling problems – so embrace your differences!

 This article first published on http://www.monster.com.sg.

How important is luck to career success?


Harry Potter may have had a bottle of Felix Felicis, the liquid potion known as Liquid Luck, to ensure him absolute luck for 12 hours, but most of us don’t have the luxury of bottled luck. However, there’s more to luck than just chance. Luck, they say, is what happens when “preparation meets opportunity”.

Luck may be a factor in career success, but there are other more defining factors – talent, skills, application and hard work. 

During his research, Professor Richard Wiseman, a public psychologist at University of Hertfordshire and author of The Luck Factor, found that people who believe that they are lucky tend to get more out of life than people who believe they are unlucky. Remember how Ron Weasley, Harry’s best friend, turned “lucky” after he believed he had consumed Felix Felicis, when he had not had even one drop. 

Wiseman studied the behaviour of lucky people to see what they were doing that made them more fortunate. His research revealed the four “principles” of luck:

• Lucky people are more likely to notice, create and act on opportunities. 
• They use their gut feeling to make successful decisions. 
• They persevere in the face of failure and take more calculated risks.
• They work to transform bad luck into good fortune by learning from experiences. 

So while you may not be able to influence “big-scale luck”, changing your behaviour can improve your odds with small-scale luck. Try these simple ways to create your own luck: 

Work on your potential
A person isn’t always born lucky. Abraham Lincoln used to say, “The harder I work, the luckier I get.” Don’t sit around waiting for the ideal opportunity to come your way; it just may not.Work on your potential – take a class, join an online course or sign up for special trainings. Lucky people add value to themselves by staying current; this keeps them ahead of the curve. After all, learning doesn’t end with graduation. 

Be open to new things
Being agile is a critical component of modern careers. Adaptability and flexibility are skills that can help you spot opportunities where others may not see any. So go ahead, show initiative and take on that new task; learning a new skill will add to your resume and is to stand you in good stead in the long run. Remember, the only thing that can overcome “hard luck” is “hard work”. 

Work on networking
It’s often said that “you make your own luck”, but for that you need to know the right people. Building your networks – formal and informal – can help put you in the know before things happen. How? Successful careers are all about networking, building relationships and taking action. Sharing knowledge and growing connections can raise your profile and bring opportunities your way.

Tap into your intuition
Intuition may not be as tangible a tool as a list of contacts, but it can help guide your career along the path you want it to. Life coach Jams Wanless, the author of Intuition @ Work & at Home & at Play, writes: “In an environment where we don’t know the conditions, old rules and formulas don’t apply.” So read the messages your gut is trying to send you and try to use your dreams to resolve career-related concerns.

Think big things 
Employ the Pygmalion effect, where higher expectations lead to improved performance, to good effect. It is a well-known fact that positivity is the basic criterion for perceived luck and good fortune. When things go wrong, don’t think you’re unlucky for success comes to people who work towards it. So “pray to God, sailor, but row for the shore”. Keep dreaming big dreams, but build them on a solid foundation.

Luck always favours the brave. So at the workplace, face your fears and work to overcome them. Embrace change, be open to new opportunities, visualise the lucky you and stay motivated. And let Frank Sinatra have the last word: “People often remark that I’m pretty lucky. Luck is only important in so far as getting the chance to sell yourself at the right moment. After that, you’ve got to have talent and know how to use it.”

Feeling lucky today? Start your search to Find Better here!

Lessons in team work from IPL 10

lessons in team work from IPL10

Pic Credit: //www.iplt20.com

The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 has rewarded its fans with some spectacular cricketing moments. While Mumbai have gone on to be the deserving champions, the top four teams that qualified for the playoffs this year have each demonstrated thorough professionalism combining teamwork with training, discipline, resilience, street smarts and some shrewd strategising. 

The success of the the four teams that made it to the playoffs—Mumbai Indians, Rising Pune Supergiants, Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders—holds important leadership lessons for the corporate world. The following tips hold good both on the cricket field as well as the corporate arena.

Team work require team balance
Team: Mumbai Indians

A bowling attack with the firepower to trouble any opposition, a formidable batting line-up, and a pack of capable all-rounders made the Mumbai Indians one of the better balanced teams in the IPL. The result was evident: Mumbai stormed into the playoffs at the top of the points table, and despite their disappointing loss to Pune in the qualifiers, went on to beat their nemesis when it mattered most and stake their claim to the trophy. 

Team lesson: Team balance is vital to building a great team, but is also among the most neglected. One reason is because managers are prone to hire people that are exactly like them. Breaking from the mold and hiring people with dissimilar attributes brings diversity with all its attendant advantages like a range of strengths and a wealth of ideas and perspectives. The result is quality decision-making and better overall performance.

Trust is an important factor in team effectiveness
Team: Kolkata Knight Riders

The team management swears by the benefits backing the team—and the strategy has paid off well. “I believed in giving a lot of security to the players. In today’s world where there is so much insecurity in every job and not only cricket, we are a franchise who does not chop and change too much,” captain Gautam Gambhir says. It’s a big part of the reason why the two-time champions found themselves in the reckoning for a third title this year.

Team lesson: With hire-and-fire policies the norm, the benefits of backing the team are often ignored in today’s corporate environment. Yet it is only reasonable that each employee is given a real chance at the job rather than chop and change at the slightest hint of failure. But don’t overdo it—sometimes, it isn’t just worth your time to cling on to idlers and shirkers.

Delegate the right tasks to the right people
Team: Sunrisers Hyderabad

Sunrisers Hyderabad’s bowling attack is among the best in the tournament, but skipper David Warner’s handling of his bowlers has provided the X factor that has converted potential into results. The skipper hasn’t been afraid to change his attack depending on the nature of the opposition. Thus, he opened with slow left armer Bipul Sharma against Brendon McCullum and Jason Roy who are comfortable against fast bowling, while also opting for Siraj over Nehra in the later stages of the tournament since the former generates more pace. 

Team lesson: A set approach to problem-solving is often a drain on time and resources, while a customized solution is freqently the best and most efficient way to deliver results. In other words, remember to ‘pick horses for courses’—be it in terms of deploying team members, or choosing a strategy, or other aspects of management.

Clear and concise communication is key to team work
Team: Rising Pune Supergiants

Their loss in the finals notwithstanding, the Rising Pune Supergiants’ IPL campaign has been nothing short of a dream run this year—and some of that credit must go to captain Steve Smith and coach Stephen Fleming. Reports suggest that both the men prefer minimal communication, keeping their messages short and sharp. “The coach and the captain don’t talk too much. They talk about only specific things which are to be discussed. We don’t have too many meetings as well as it takes too much of time. It’s clear message—short and sharp,” squad member Manoj Tiwary has revealed. The method has clearly paid off, with Rising Pune Supergiants finishing runners-up after languishing at seventh position last season.

Team lesson: While communicating properly is rightly emphasised, the disadvatages of overcommunication is less talked about. But the latter comes with its own set of pitfalls: much of the message is lost in the noise, and over-communicating strains the attention of the listener. The solution? Reverting to the basics tenets of good communication and keeping the message crisp and clear.

Whether it’s the cricket pitch or the workplace, the basics of team work and team management remain the same. So go ahead and put these tips into action. Done right, they should help you edge closer to your own professional victories.

Leadership skills play a vital role in career development. To become a better leader, find expert advice here.

Why a great dad makes a great leader

Why a Great Dad makes a Great Leader

Becoming a great dad isn’t something that happens overnight, they are shaped over time. The same goes for great leaders. In both instances, hard work, commitment to improvement through experience and trusting your instincts will make you the man your kids – and team members – deserve.

No wonder that some of the most important qualities for being an effective father can be especially useful when leading a team or an organisation.

Here’s why being a dad can make you a more effective leader:

He gives his strength to others
There’s a popular saying that goes, “A leader isn’t someone who forces others to make him stronger; a leader is someone willing to give his strength to others so that they may have the strength to stand on their own.”

An involved father creates a secure and nurturing environment for his kids. As a leader, this dad will prove to be a source of strength for his team members, who are looking for a similar kind of stability in the workspace.

He is a compelling communicator
A good father has to be an engaging storyteller if he wants to convince his kids to change their actions and behaviours. He also needs to be able to clearly spell out his expectations.

At work, team members appreciate the same level of clarity regarding targets and accountability. Also, a father who listens to his kids is likely to be more open to new ideas at work.

He inspires trust
Building a trusting relationship with your children is the cornerstone of good parenting. An engaged dad will ensure his kids feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and feelings, regardless of the consequences.

A powerful leader recognises the importance of creating a similar equation with his team. When your people trust you and your vision, they’ll work for you tirelessly without fear of making a mistake.

He is patient
Any parent who has dealt with a toddler or teen’s tantrums will tell you that being patient and persistent will pay off in these situations. At work too, an effective leader knows that there are times when the best thing to do is nothing but wait, watch and reflect.

He leads by example
From the values he holds to how he treats other people, a good dad sets a good example for his kids, who tend to mimic his behaviour. Similarly, in a workplace, employees usually take their cues from the actions of their leader. A good chief will ensure he’s putting out the right message.

He knows how to have fun
A great dad knows the best way to forge a deep bond with his kids is to have fun with them. In the same vein, a leader should be able to laugh at himself and keep the mood light among team members. A leader who isn’t afraid to have fun with his staff will find them willing to go that extra mile during times of trouble.

While managing a team isn’t the same as handling children (though there are days when it can feel that way!), the fundamentals for a success as a father can also help you triumph as a leader.

How the Indian flag can inspire your work values

How Indian flag can inspire you

Come August 15, several miniature Indian flags are hoisted on office desks across India. But how many of us have stopped to think about how the tri-colour also represents workplace values that we hold sacred?

Each colour and symbol contains a unique message that is as relevant to our professional lives as our personal lives. Read on to know what the colours saffron, white and green and the Ashoka Chakra in the center signify and how the message of the national flag can be used to reinforce your professional principles.

Saffron: Strength and Courage

When it comes to career, saffron symbolizes the mental strength that is crucial for career success. As psychotherapist and author of the book 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do, Amy Morin, writes, “Mentally strong people overcome setbacks with confidence, because adversity only makes them better.” She adds that mentally strong people are more realistic in their approach, more in control of their emotions, and know how to use their time more productively.

Saffron also stands for courage, which gives one’s career a sense of purpose. Bill Treasurer, CEO of Giant Leap Consulting, which specializes in helping build ‘workplace courage’, divides courage into three parts—‘try courage’, ‘trust courage’ and ‘tell courage’. “With less fear and more courage, workers take on harder projects, deal better with change and speak up more willingly about important issues,” he writes.

White: Peace and Truth

Legendary basketball coach John Wooden provided one of the best definitions of professional success when he said, “Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to become the best that you are capable of becoming.” Career success is not always about beating the competition in the race to the top. True success is about finding peace of mind and inner calm by giving your best effort. The white panel in the flag is a reminder to go beyond superfluous definitions of success and strive towards reaching the one true goal of finding inner peace.

The pursuit of truth can assume many forms, from practising simple truth-telling at the workplace, to having the courage to be pragmatic when confronted with difficult choices. For example, changing career track when you realize something isn’t working comes from an ability to perceive the truth and act accordingly. Sometimes, the truth hurts, but allowing yourself to be guided by it will always leave you at a better place than you were before.

Green: Fertility, growth and auspiciousness

The colour green represents creative fertility in the workplace. Creativity is becoming an increasingly important attribute in an age where automation is threatening the future of jobs. The World Economic Forum’s Jobs Of The Future report(January 2016) declares that creativity will become the third most important job skill by 2020. It defines creativity as “the ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.” 

Along with creative fertility, green also represents growth. The lack of growth opportunities is often cited as a major factor when people quit their jobs. But professional growth needn’t always be led by external factors—for example through promotions or salary increments. You could also grow professionally by learning new skills to enhance your professional profile and make yourself more marketable and, as a final option, Find Better
The last attribute—auspiciousness—reminds us of the importance of timeliness and luck. It is also a reminder that certain things are beyond our control and that it is in our best interests to accept them as they are.

Ashoka Chakra: Need for movement and progress

The Dharma Chakra, adapted from the Ashoka Pillar at Sarnath, comprises 24 separate spokes connecting to a single wheel. Each spoke represents a unique virtue such as love, patience, mercy, gracefulness, gentleness, selflessness, self-control, humility etc. that are also important work manifestos. For example, #LoveWhatYouDo is the first step towards excelling in your career. Humility and gracefulness are also important qualities to possess at the workplace, as are patience and self-control.

On the whole, the Dharma Chakra or the ‘wheel of law’ is symbolic of the need for continuous movement as a precondition for progress, and a warning of the perils of stagnation. The central message from the Dharma Chakra is never to come to a standstill, to #GoOutAndBe irrespective of how difficult the circumstances are.

As we celebrate Independence Day this year, let’s keep in mind the timeless wisdom symbolized by our beloved tri-colour and adopt them to take our career and nation forward.

Gain freedom from these common workplace fears

The office is like your second home; most of us spend 50% of our total waking hours during any given day at work. But it doesn’t seem so home-like when workplace anxiety and fears start gnawing at us.

Jonathan Berent, psychotherapist and co-author of Work Makes Me Nervous, believes that some level of workplace anxiety is normal, but it “becomes a problem when it results in obsessive worrying or avoidance.”

If workplace anxieties and fears control you, it could affect your career and mental wellbeing. “Most people who work experience it due to the reality of ongoing and an ever-evolving pressure for performance and productivity,” Berent says.

Here’s a look at how you can get rid of some common workplace fears that may be holding you back from achieving your professional goals:

Fear of public speaking

According to popular opinion, the average person ranks fear of public speaking higher than the fear of death. It tends to bring on palpitations, cold sweats, clammy hands and an extremely uncomfortable demeanor. It’s the one fear every professional needs to face up to repeatedly — it could be while making a presentation before seniors, chatting with clients on con calls or sharing opinions with colleagues. 

How to overcome it:
• Prepare mentally from the instant you know you need to present to an audience. 
• Organize your materials and thoughts to stay relaxed. 
• Ensure that the words you use are simple and your sentences short. 
• Include your own experiences to impart information and make your speech/presentation heartfelt.
• Make time to practice and watch yourself in the mirror to see how you appear to others. Pay attention to body language, including gestures, movements and facial expressions. 
• Record yourself to learn how to modulate and use your voice. 
• Try deep breathing before and during your presentation to calm your nerves and give power to your voice.

Fear of Networking

Be it insider information, a new job opportunity or bringing in business for your company, networking is the way ahead. Madeline Bell, president and CEO of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, runs Heels of Success, a career mentorship blog. On it, she writes: “These days, it’s not enough to keep your head down and produce A-plus work. You need to connect with others, be vocal about your interests and career goals, and build relationships with people you might not otherwise have met.” Yet many of us tend to back into a corner and wonder what to do at a conference, roundtable or career fair.

How to overcome it:
• Do your homework. Find out who’ll be attending so you can focus on the people you’d most like to meet. 
• Set yourself one or two realistic goals – meeting a specific person or learning about a product – so you can network in a targeted way.
• Arrive early so that you can settle in before you work the room. Walking in when groups have formed won’t help your cause. 
• Try a few pre-prepared, open-ended questions once you’re past the introductions. Make sure you’re ready with your information too. 
• Build yourself up, but also focus on listening – this ability is common to all good networkers.
• Maintain an open body posture, look relaxed and warm, make eye contact and smile. Put that phone away and connect with people. 
• A networking buddy, friend or colleague, can help you to break the ice and create your own circles. But don’t cling to each other.

Fear of the Annual Performance Evaluation

The Society for Human Resource Management says 95% employees are dissatisfied with their organization’s appraisal process and as many as 90% don’t believe the process provides “accurate information.” No wonder that the annual appraisal is something that employees across the board and hierarchies fear. Negotiation during the appraisal – be it asking for a pay raise or a new position – only elevates existing anxiety levels. 

How to overcome it:
• Thinking of it as an opportunity to better yourself gives you “power” over the process and takes away the fear. 
• Rewind to your earlier review. Build a case for your performance by listing down the KRAs and your accomplishments.
• Use objective data – new skills, responsibilities, projects and successes – to set the stage for negotiation. 
• Peer feedback may help you gain a different perspective on your performance. Coworkers can reveal unknown facets of your working style. 
• Conduct a mock review with a friend, get a good night’s sleep, dress appropriately and work on making a good impression. 
• Don’t think of it as a confrontation with the boss. Instead, view it as a gateway for a conversation. 
Now that you know how you can rid yourself from these workplace worries, go ahead and act. You have the freedom to #GoOutAndBe.

Are you a workplace Freedom Fighter? [Quiz]

Are you a workplace freedom fighter

Do you champion autonomy and push your creative boundaries on the job? Take our test to find out if you’re an independent thinker at work.

1. Your job demands fixed timings. You:

A. Negotiate a flexible work schedule with your management

B. Silently struggle during working hours

C. Willingly punch in and out of office every day

2. When asked to contribute to a pitch for a new project, you:

A. Come up with a new plan or creative concept

B. Develop a creative concept, but feel hesitant to share it

C. Take the tried and tested route that guarantees success

3. ‘Work is not supposed to be fun. That’s why it’s called work’, says a colleague. Your response?

A. Make a list of things you can do to make your co-workers’ smile

B. Believe that excitement is good but do nothing to make it happen

C. Agree

4. When there’s a disagreement at work between seniors and team members you:

A. Raise it on your own

B. Ask your colleagues to speak up with you

C. Stay silent because you feel it’s risky to share your concerns 

5. What do you do when you know your manager is wrong?

A. Share your point of view to drive a meaningful discussion

B. Avoid voicing your real thoughts

C. You believe the boss is always right

6. To you, being empowered at work means:

A. Being allowed to choose what you work on

B. Responsibility with less accountability

C. Letting your manager define your role

7. When it appears you won’t make a deadline because of circumstances outside your control, you may:

A. Have an emotional outburst

B. Seem mildly irritated

C. Find ways to blame others

8. When you’re in a meeting room full of people who just can’t keep up, you:

A. Listen, because you believe you can learn something from everyone 

B. Argue, or shut them down, telling them why their idea is wrong or won’t work

C. Are okay with going slower 

9. Failure is:

A. An important and valued part of the learning process

B. The feeling that everyone else is doing something great but me

C. Slacking at work and getting caught for it

10. How would you describe your work style?

A. Experimenting to see what works best

B. Following the same routine despite knowing it’s a waste of your potential

C. Big believer in standardized processes

If you’re mostly A’s, you’re a Workplace Freedom Fighter! 

A person who forges ahead with new ideas and initiatives, you’re unafraid of confrontation. You hold yourself accountable at work and aren’t afraid to make mistakes. Yes, you may need to work on keeping your emotions in check, but even so you’re an asset to your organization. 

If you’re mostly B’s, you need to add more freedom to your work life.

There’s a ton of research that proves employees who exercise autonomy regularly at work are happier and more productive. Clearly, you want more freedom at work but are having a hard time motivating yourself to pursue it. Could it be because you are pursuing something you don’t personally value? Maybe it’s time to #FindBetter here.

If you’re mostly C’s, you need to improve your ambition at work

You can improve and develop your ambition the same way you work on any other skill. Begin by looking at people who are excited by their jobs – when you #LoveWhatYouDo, you work with enthusiasm because it’s a career that’s right for you. Don’t let yourself get stuck in a rut. Set goals, unleash your creativity and aim for greatness.

Which Original Star Trek team member are you at work?

Star Trek

When it comes to our careers, all of us want to ‘Live Long and Prosper’. And what better place to seek inspiration than a tale that has captured imaginations around the world for decades?

Whether fending off attacks from unknown alien starships or freeing Federation outposts, the seven key members of the U.S.S Enterprise crew are highly successful in their missions. Take a trip back in time and find out which of these Star Trek: The Original Series characters you channel at work!

Lessons from Star Trek

James T Kirk: The Risk Taker

Given his courage, confidence and charismatic personality, the captain of the USS Enterprise believes in leading by example. Bluffing his way to outmaneuver enemies and disobeying direct orders to save team members, Kirk’s willingness to take risks (and accept failure!) is his greatest strengths. His team knows he’d take a bullet for them. In an episode where, after blowing up his cherished ship to save his crew and take out the attackers in one fell swoop, Kirk asks Bones if he did the right thing. Bones replies that he had done “what you’ve always done: Turn death into a fighting chance to live”.

Lessons from Star Trek
Lessons from Star Trek
Lessons from Star Trek
Lessons from Star Trek
Lessons from Star Trek

At times, Kirk’s impetuous nature may cause him to make snap decisions that don’t have the best results. But more often than not, by relying on his gut feeling and intuition, he challenges the status quo to achieve the impossible. 

Spock: The Logical Thinker

On the other end of the spectrum from Kirk is the first officer of the USS Enterprise. Spock places his trust in cold, hard facts to gain insight into the ideas and actions of others. It would be unfair to say the half-Vulcan is devoid of emotions – he simply refuses to be overcome by them. 
Spock’s matter-of-fact style and questionable people skills do pose a challenge to even the most amiable team members. But his unequivocal loyalty to the mission and ability to gather the facts, study them and respectfully provide input are qualities that endear him to others.

Leonard ‘Bones’ McCoy: The Compassionate Colleague

If Kirk is the inspiration and Spock is the brain, we’d call McCoy the heart of the U.S.S Enterprise team. In an episode titled The Ultimate Computer, he even explains why he believes empathy is key to success. “Compassion. That’s the one thing no machine ever had. Maybe it’s the one thing that keeps men ahead of them.”

Bones may be the kindest man on the bridge, but that doesn’t mean he’s willing to suffer fools. He’s never one to mince words when it comes to expressing his dislike for people, but he is always the first to bring up the moral side in a discussion. You can always count on him to do the right thing.

Montgomery Scott (Scotty): Pressure Performer

When the going gets tough, you’re unlikely to see this chief engineer jump ship. Scotty may need a little nudge to get past his initial reservations, but once his engine is revved up, it’s all systems go! His ability to perform in stressful situations is his biggest asset; in most Star Trek episodes, we watch as he solves unimaginable crises involving the engine or transporters below the bridge. Like Kirk, he too believes in the “do as I do” leadership style; unlike Kirk, he’s a background player who shines during high-pressure times. 

Always willing to rise to a challenge, it’s no wonder ‘Beam me up, Scotty!’ has become his catchphrase.

Pavel Chekov: All Star Player

The youngest person on the bridge, Chekov brings new perspectives to enhance the functioning of the team. We watch him juggle several roles — second-in-command executive officer, science officer, medical officer. He’s even the office clown, whose nervous energy keeps the laughter going at work. The Russian prodigy is basically that teammate who can do pretty much anything, if given a chance. 

Hikaru Sulu: A Man of Many Talents

He may not be the most captivating person on the bridge, but Captain Sulu’s competency in a variety of tasks makes him an integral to the success of the team. In an episode titled ‘The Man Trap,’ we see how his interest in botany helps identify a carnivorous plant that threatens to wipe out the crew. He’s also the only one Kirk turns to for an assessment of the conditions on unexplored planets. 

Unlike Chekov or Scotty, Sulu’s very level-headed. Which is probably why he’s often asked to take on the role of acting commander of the ship. After all, if you’re looking to divest management responsibilities, you’d want to leave your most pragmatic team member in charge.

Lessons from Star Trek

Nyota Uhura: The Wonder Woman 

Of the seven members on the bridge, Nyota Uhura is the only woman on the team. But her gender isn’t the only reason why she stands out. The Enterprise’s Communications Officer is a linguistic genius, a brilliant techie among trekkies, problem-solver and fearless in fights. A feminist icon that quietly challenged the idea of masculinity on the bridge, she’s proof that women can be taken seriously in male-dominated environments.


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Your lucky colour and how it can help you advance your career

 your lucky color can help your career

Navy or beige? Red or blue? Black or white?

Colours play an extremely critical role in our life, affecting emotions and moods in a way that few other things can. Each color in the visible light spectrum has its own wavelength and frequency, producing an energy and nutritive effect specific to it.

Your feelings about a particular color are personal, but they can color how people view you, your attitude, personality and character. Be it an interview, a regular work day or a big presentation, the hues you choose work as a calling card for you as much as your business card does.

Most of us, depending on our birth date, have a couple of “lucky” colors. We tell you how you can use your lucky color to convey your professionalism, reliability, honesty, self-confidence and sophistication.


Born: 1, 10, 19 and 28 of any month
Ruling planet: Sun 
You are: Goal-oriented, demanding, determined, results-driven, determined, aggressive, intense, risk-taker.
Lucky colours: Shades of gold, yellow, orange and mustard are best.

How to wear it:
Men – Use the bright color sparingly – perhaps in a bracelet or tie. Or opt for a golden watch. Sharp dressers can try a mustard jacket. 
Women -Set off a mustard kurta or yellow shirt with a gold chain or earrings. Gold – not the sparkly kind – also works well in a shirt.


Born: 2, 11, 20 and 29 of any month
Ruling planet: Moon
You are: Creative, imaginative, active, compassionate, soft-spoken, neutral, good organiser
Lucky colours: Green (especially light green), silver, creamy yellow and grey are good.

How to wear it:
Men – Grey is perfect for the workplace, be it as a suit or trousers. Add a crisp white shirt and a silver watch/ring to lighten your look. 
Women -Try a creamy yellow/green blouse with a grey skirt/pant suit. Silver accessories can complete the look. 


Born: 3, 12, 21 and 30 of any month
Ruling planet: Jupiter
You are: Goal-oriented, determined, adventurous, hard-working, diligent, honest and impatient.
Lucky colours: Stick to red, pink, orange, yellow and maroon.

How to wear it:
Men – Offset a maroon/light pink shirt with a neutral jacket. An orange/yellow watch/sneakers can work on casual dressing days. 
Women -Wear all the colors with panache – saris, kurtas, skirts or even in accessories such as maroon shoes.


Born: 4, 13, 22 and 31 of any month
Ruling planet: Pluto
You are: Well informed, sharp, cautious, deliberate, idea-driven, loyal, creative
Lucky colours: All shades of blue. 

How to wear it:
Men – Be it periwinkle, powder, navy, sky or Prussian, blue is a male favorite. Try a shirt, jacket, chinos or blue moccasins on Friday. 
Women – Indigo is extremely popular these days – in kurtis, kurtas and dresses – but so are other shades of blue. Try blue eyeliner for additional luck.


Born: 5, 14 and 23 of each month
Ruling planet: Mercury 
You are: Sharp, a deep thinker, cautious, neutral, practical and an implementer.
Lucky colours: Grey or any light shades.

How to wear it:
Men -Pick a light shirt to set off a dark grey jacket or vice-versa
Women -A light shirt/blouse paired with a pencil grey skirt epitomizes the working girl’s style.


Born: 6, 15 and 24 of any month
Ruling planet: Venus
You are: Friendly, idealistic, assertive, determined, compassionate, idea-driven and committed.
Lucky colours: Dark green, dark blue and red.

How to wear it: 
Men -Try a red pocket square or a red tie with a dark blue suit. Optionally, a dark green jacket sets off grey/black trousers. 
Women -A dark green/blue dress looks formal and elegant. Pair it with a red bag/satchel to make a statement.


Born: 7, 16 and 25 of each month
Ruling planet: Neptune 
You are: A thinker, imaginative, moody, considerate, patient and idealistic.
Lucky colours: Light green, light yellow, white.

How to wear it:
Men -A crisp white shirt can go from work desk to boardroom, in style. Or else, try light hues of yellow or green linen in your shirt. 
Women -Be it a shirt or kurta, white and light shades work well in every kind of apparel. You can even get away with white footwear.


Born: 8, 17 or 26 of any month
Ruling planet: Saturn
You are: Professional, blunt, hardworking, daring, courageous, outgoing and goal directed.
Lucky colours: Yellow, dark green, dark blue.

How to wear it:
Men -Wear a workday shirt in yellow hue, or even a yellow linen jacket which adds a casual Friday vibe. Dark green/blue must be staples in jackets/trousers/chinos. 
Women -Every shade of yellow works well – be it butter, flax, lemon or gold. Try a mustard shirt-dress for a formal look; mustard is also great in bags.


Born: 9, 18 and 27 of any month
Ruling planet: Mars
You are: Courageous, hardworking, brave, consistent, problem solver, impatient and self-confident.
Lucky colours: Shades of red

How to wear it:
Men -It’s possible to wear this bright shade – try a berry red jacket or blazer, a solid red tie, a brick red pocket square or a blush shirt inside a grey jacket.
Women -Crimson, cherry, rose, brick, wine or blush – women can carry them all off with élan. If you are looking for a small dose of red, change your accessories such as bag, shoes and belt.

Colours help express your personality and style. Whatever color you choose to don, make sure it makes you feel confident and self-assured. And have a good day, every day!