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Vision 30

Career Coaching for Young Professionals

Commentary vs. Contribution by J.Kiesau

 

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Think about all the interactions you have with others on a daily basis:

  • Face to Face
  • Phone
  • Text / Email
  • Social Media
  • Blogs / Articles

Do you provide commentary or contribution?

This really is an important question, because I think some people get them confused.

What’s the difference?

Relationships are all about value. Relationships succeed and thrive because there is an exchange of value in one way or another. All parties get something out of the relationship that is beneficial to them.

Commentary is just talking or . . . commenting. There really isn’t any purpose behind it. It’s not helping other parties reach their goals and it’s not helping fulfill any other purpose outside of fulfilling the “commentors” need to say something, hear themselves talk, receive validation, feel a sense of control, or get a reaction out of others.

Contribution can be talking, but it’s purposeful. It provides value to an exchange and relationship. A contributor is paying attention to what is going on and is looking for ways they can help. They communicate when they feel they can add value and they shut up if they can’t.

Big Difference!

Have you ever been in a meeting where you have that one person who needs to comment on everything that is said? Maybe they are trying to be entertaining or maybe the truly feel they are adding value, but in reality neither is Contribute - Vision30happening.  I was in a meeting where a person didn’t appear very engaged when others were speaking, but when the boss was talking they were smiling, nodding their head, and repeating everything that was said as if the boss needed that validation? The boss didn’t need any validation. The person commenting did!

In a meeting, a contributor really doesn’t say much unless they feel they can add value to what is being talked about. They are engaged, but they are controlled and purposeful with how they show up in the meeting. They ask clarifying questions to understand better. They challenge, make suggestions, and share ideas they feel could be beneficial. It’s truly not about them.

Three Ways to Become A Contributor

  1. Pay Attention – In “7 Habits of Highly Effective People“, Covey talks about “Seek to Understand, before you Seek to be Understood” The more you pay attention and understand the more you will be able to contribute.
  2. Understand Your Impact – You need to understand and embrace what you bring to the table. What are your strengths and weaknesses? How can you help and what value can your role bring.
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  3. Have Confidence – You are paying attention to what is going on. You recognize where you can impact. You now must have the confidence to communicate your ideas and take action. You can’t sit back and say nothing. You must contribute!
    -

Each of us has an awesome opportunity to add value and contribute to the world around us, but we need to know what’s going on and have the confidence in ourselves to take action and make things happen.

We can all contribute!

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What contributions will you make by 30?

 

6 Traits of Great Leaders – Inc.com

 

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Here is a great piece from Inc.com titled “6 Traits of Great Leaders”.

  1. They surround themselves with smart people.
  2. They demand accountability.
  3. Inc.comThey understand the power of thank you.
  4. They truly inspire others.
  5. They are engaged in their surroundings.
  6. They seek out positive energy.

Read the entire article here:
http://www.inc.com/damian-bazadona/great-leaders-essential-traits.html

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How could your world change if you developed these six traits?

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What kind of leader can you be by 30?

The Balance Game

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Life is truly a game of balance.

Vision 30 BalanceBalance is often overlooked, simply because we’re never really taught to balance. We’re taught to go and do and accomplish. Those who are able to balance the demands of their world experience less stress and are more aware of what areas of their life need more focus and attention. They are in a better position to lead, because they are leading by example!

Balance comes into play when something goes wrong and we feel the stress and pressure of an event or situation. We react and start to fix the situation until the pain goes away. Eventually old ways of thinking, feeling, and doing become normal again until the next disaster.

Stop Reacting!

Most of the time stress and frustration is self-induced. It’s a lack of not living true to ourselves and poor prioritization. We give time, energy, and attention to certain things when we should be giving that time, energy, and attention to other things.

Vision 30 BalanceBalance Analysis

On a scale of 1 and 10, how would you rate your over all happiness in life?

Let’s break it down a bit further:

On a scale of 1 and 10 how happy are you in each of the following six areas:

  • Health
  • Finances
  • Relationships
  • Career
  • Misc. / Fun / Hobbies
  • Impact

We don’t deal with any stress or frustration that isn’t related to Health, Finances, Relationships, and Career. Misc./Fun/Hobbies and Impact are things that are important, but can easily be forgotten about.

It’s extremely important to be mindful of all key areas of your life as each of them can impact another.

For example:

Because Money is high priority, you work 60 hours per week. Because you work 60 hours per week you aren’t exercising and you don’t have time to prepare food at home. Because don’t have time to prepare food at home, you’re eating out all the time. Because you’re not exercising on a regular basis and you’re eating out all the time, you have gained 25lbs. Because you gained 25lbs, your self-esteem has gone down, your insecurity has gone up, and you just can’t figure out why you’re not happy! But hey, at least you have money right?

You get the point!

Full and Balanced

Vision 30 BalanceThink of these six areas as if they are tires on your vehicle. The more full and balanced your tires are, the more efficiently your vehicle will move toward its destination. If some tires aren’t full and balanced this will cause your vehicle to overcompensate in other areas creating uneven wear and tear. If you continue to operate your vehicle like this at minimum your ride might be rough and your gas mileage is going to suck. Worst case is you experience a high stress and frustration in one or more areas and that tire blows.

How far are you going with a flat tire?  How important is it for you to be balanced in the important areas of your life?

How balanced will you be by 30?

One Thing I Learned In My 20′s Was:

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Profitability

My first job out of college was as a Graphic Designer at an advertising agency. When I interviewed for the position they were looking to fill two positions. When I got hired, I learned they filled the two positions they were looking for, but they were so impressed with my persistent follow-up, they created a position for me.

My first year in the real world was one of the more challenging years as an adult.  I had just graduated from school and had a false sense of reality.  They said some nice things about me so my ego was inflated.  I probably spent more time building relationships with my co-workers than I did working.  Finally, there was two or three times throughout this first year I really pissed my Creative Director off.

As I was eagerly awaiting my one year review I had this idea that I was going to walk into the meeting, get my 3% raise, talk about how great my design work was, and resume my life.

Reality check!

At my one year review I was presented with three options, in which none of them had to do with a raise.  If that wasn’t bad enough, none of them had anything to do with me continuing to work there either.  I was no longer wanted.  I was getting fired.

I was shocked, but I shouldn’t have been.  They had reasons to do this.  I had made mistakes and I was unprofessional at times.   Looking back, if I had been my Creative Director, I would have fired me long before he did.   We discussed a number of things that led to this decision, but for me it came down to one thing.

I wasn’t profitable!

Are You Profitable?I wasn’t profitable in my day-to-day job.  I was great at design, but didn’t understand business.  I didn’t understand that my employer billed their clients an hourly rate while at the same time they were paying me an hourly rate.  In order for the company to reach its goals I needed to complete my work in a certain period of time that allowed them to maintain their profit margin on each project.   I didn’t get that.

You have to be profitable!

Bottom-line, the survival of a business depends on one thing: Making Money!  If a company isn’t making money, it isn’t going to be around long.  If an employee isn’t contributing to the company making money, they won’t be around either.

The best way to be profitable and increase your value and job security is to understand the business you work for.  Not just your role, the entire business.  Take some time to understand the business from the leaders’ perspective. What are the types of things that keep them up at night?  How does your position in the organization impact these issues?

Career advancement, promotions, and raises happen when the people who understand the business recognize the impact you can make.  They value and need people who can make an impact.  If you don’t understand the business and how it makes money, how in the world are you going to contribute to the bottom-line.

Increase your value and understand profitability!

How profitable will you be by 30?

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