Mining People Matters

Steve Heather

Steve Heather, Managing Director and Co-founder of Mining People International (MPi).

Mirror Mirror on the wall...

Mirror Mirror on the wall...

Mirror Mirror on the wall...

Excerpt from Mining People News, November 2011 Edition.

The powerful theme through this end of year edition of MPi News is YOU. We like this kind of stuff at MPi and we like presenting short, sharp pieces in MPi News that help people get more out of themselves.

One of the more impactful quotes I can recall was delivered during a personal development seminar I attended, by Robert Kiyosaki some 20 years ago.

It put life, business and achievement into a very sharp, personal, perspective.

 “For Things To Change First I Must Change”.

Think about this for a moment. Before anything can change in my life, ‘I’, have to change myself first.

This takes the notion of Personal Responsibility to another whole level doesn’t it?

There is no point blaming others, other events, or those dreadful things – called circumstances. The reality is: people will do stuff, things will happen and circumstances will be.

You can control very little about those, but what you can do is control how you respond to them and how long you spend around them. This part is 100% within your control.

This is what Champions focus on.

Along these same lines I spotted a great article in the major Western Australian newspaper earlier this year, authored by Daniel Kehoe, the author of the “You Lead, They’ll Follow” series of books on management and leadership.

The workplace provides you with many ways that you can develop as a manager and in the process, we need maturity to want to know what we are not and what we don’t do well.

Many people only reflect effectively when a crisis occurs in their lives.  Things like serious illness, death, divorce, depression, failed relationships, our kids turn to drugs, our business fails, etc.  Reflection is not something many of us do naturally.

The New Shorter Oxford English Dictionary defines reflection as, “the process or faculty by which the mind has knowledge of itself and its workings”.  If we can harness the art of reflection and use it as a learning tool we have a powerful way of learning and committing that learning to new behaviours.  We can learn to reflect effectively by asking some specific questions of ourselves.

The questions below examine a range of aspects and issues that influence and strengthen our learning and beliefs.  It is an assessment of how we go about our daily life in our workplace.

If something undesirable has happened in your workplace in which you are a factor, while it is not a pleasant experience, you have just been given a great opportunity to learn, grown and be a better person for it.  Answer these questions as they are relevant to your situation, but don’t avoid the uncomfortable ones.

 

What things worked well for you?

What things happened that you didn’t expect to happen?

What might happen in the future if you keep doing what you are doing?

What things differentiated your current behaviour from that which you normally display?

Why did you do things the way you did?  How else may the same things be done?

What insights did you gain from this experience that you would use in a similar situation?

How did people react when you did it that way?  Why did people react the way they did?

How might people react if you were to do it another way?

What worked for you this time that didn’t work for you before?

What things did you learn about yourself?  What things did you learn about others?

Where are the opportunities for new ways of doing things?

What are the underlying forces driving this situation?

How would the situation change if you were to remove different influencing factors?

What conditions have changed over the period of time you have been involved?

What things are not what they appear to be?

How would you have to change to be more effective next time?

How would you think differently to deal with this situation differently?

How might your current way of thinking about this situation be limiting your effectiveness?

What are other beliefs that could be true about this situation?

Who else might be stakeholders beyond the ones you have already identified?

What observations led you to your conclusions?

What factors did you ignore?

What would you do differently next time if you had to do it again?

What would you do more of the next time if you had to do it again?

 

Think about that recent event that occurred in your workplace that perhaps did not go well (and where you were a factor) and score yourself against the questions listed.

 

Don’t beat yourself up, just remember that “For Things To Change First I Must Change”