Daily Sortie

 A “sortie” is a short journey. In pilot talk, it refers to a single flight of an aircraft. These short trips explore things of interest and practicality.

แยกเป้าหมายเป็นสองส่วน

คือ ส่วนท้าทาย และส่วนสนับสนุน

บริษัทเจนเนอรัล อีเล็กทริค (จีอี)เป็นผู้บุกเบิกการตั้งเป้าหมายในช่วงทศวรรษ 1940 โดยพนักงานของบริษัทเป็นคนกำหนดเป้าหมายของตัวเองที่มีความเฉพาะเจาะจง,วัดผลได้, ทำได้จริง, ความเกี่ยวข้อง, และมีขอบเขตเรื่องเวลา (SMART Goal) ซึ่งเป็นเหมือนสัญญาในการทำงาน  ส่วนใหญ่ผลการทำงานดีขึ้นอย่างเห็นได้ชัดเจน แต่บางกรณีอาจมีการตั้งเป้าหมายที่ไม่เป็นชิ้นเป็นอัน ไม่มองการณ์ไกล ซึ่งกรณีนี้อาจเข้าเกณฑ์การตั้งเป้าหมายแบบ SMART แต่ไม่เอื้อกับการแข่งขันของบริษัท ดังนั้น จีอีจึงได้พัฒนาแนวคิดเรื่องการระดมสมองเพื่อ “เป้าหมายที่ท้าทาย” (Stretch Goal) ซึ่งไม่ได้เน้นการเป็นเป้าหมายที่ทำสำเร็จได้ง่าย แต่เป็นการสร้างแรงบันดาลใจเรื่องนวัตกรรมและความหมาย 

เป้าหมายที่ท้าทายของคุณควรเริ่มจากเป้าหมายระยะยาว ที่ครอบคลุมไปถึงเป้าหมายและหลักการใช้ชีวิต จากมุมมองกว้างๆนี้ คุณสามารถที่จะมองให้แคบลงแต่โฟกัสไปที่เป้าเท่านั้น โดยทำไปทีละขั้นๆ จนเป็นเป้าหมาย SMART ที่เฉพาะเจาะจง และสามารถนำไปใช้จัดการชีวิตประจำวันได้ ยกตัวอย่างเช่น เป้าหมายของอีลอน มัสก์ที่ รู้กันอยู่แล้วว่า เขาต้องการไปดาวอังคาร ซึ่งถือเป็นเป้าหมายที่ท้าทายของเขา ที่ค่อยๆเพิ่มความเป็นไปได้โดยใช้เป้าหมาย SMART ในการพัฒนาจรวด

Achieve your goals @ Soft Power Skills Academy-an online professionally-guided team workshop using practical projects to put leadership principles into action.

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Make Your Goals Matter

General Electric pioneered a system of goal-setting in the 1940s, in which employees developed their own specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals which became a contract for performance. In most cases, this dramatically improved work performance. But some units were setting goals that were trivial or short-sighted; they met the SMART criteria but weren’t contributing to the bottom line of the company. Consequently, GE developed the concept of brainstorming “stretch goals,” in which the emphasis wasn’t on being easily achievable, but on inspiring innovation and meaning. 

Your stretch goals should ideally start from longer-term, overarching life purposes and principles. From that broad perspective, you can narrow the focus of your goals, step-by-step, to the more specific SMART goals that you use to manage day-to-day behavior.  Elon Musk’s well-known goal of making it to Mars is a significant stretch goal, which is supported by the incremental SMART goals of rocket development.

Achieve your goals @ Soft Power Skills Academy-an online professionally-guided team workshop using practical projects to put leadership principles into action.

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

พร้อมตั้งปณิธานปีใหม่กันหรือยัง?

ตั้งเป้าหมายที่อยู่ในขอบเขตที่ควบคุมได้

ขั้นตอนแรกเพื่อหลีกเลี่ยงความเครียดและความล้มเหลว ต้องมั่นใจว่าคุณสามารถควบคุมปัจจัยที่จะทำให้เป้าหมายสำเร็จได้ เช่น การตั้งเป้าว่าจะได้เลื่อนขั้นเป็นหัวหน้าของแผนก ซึ่งอาจจะดูเหมือนเป็นความทะเยอทะยานที่เหมาะสมแล้ว แต่ถึงอย่างนั้นคุณก็ไม่ได้ควบคุมการเลื่อนขั้น ดังนั้น เป้าหมายของคุณควรเป็นการฝึกอบรมให้ได้ใบประกาศนียบัตร หรือทักษะที่เพิ่มโอกาสได้รับการเลื่อนขั้น

เราอาจจะจินตนาการว่าเรากำลังอยู่ในวงกลมหลายๆวง โดยที่วงกลมแรกเราสามารถควบคุมได้ เป็นสิ่งที่เราสามารถเรียนรู้เพื่อตัวเอง ทำเพื่อตัวเอง วงกลมต่อไปเป็นวงกลมที่เราสามารถมีอิทธิพลหรือโน้มน้าวให้เป็นไปตามที่เราต้องการได้ เป็นการโน้มน้าวให้ผู้อื่นช่วยเหลือในสิ่งที่ไม่สามารถทำได้ด้วยตัวเอง และวงกลมสุดท้าย อาจมีสิ่งต่างๆมากมายที่ทำให้เรารู้สึกกังวล เครียดและแทบจะควบคุมไม่ได้ ยิ่งเข้าใจถึงเป้าหมายมากเท่าไหร่ ยิ่งเพิ่มโอกาสให้ประสบความสำเร็จและบรรลุเป้าหมายนั้นได้เท่านั้น

Soft Power Skills Academy เป็นเวิร์กชอปออนไลน์เข้มข้นแบบเฟซ ทู เฟซ ระยะเวลา 4 สัปดาห์ สำหรับบุคคลที่พร้อมจะก้าวสู่ขั้นต่อไปในการพัฒนาตัวเอง และการเป็นผู้นำ เราช่วยคุณทำเป้าหมายให้สำเร็จได้

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Planning to Make a New Year’s Resolution?

Make Goals in Your Circle of Control

Are you ready to make a New Year’s resolution?

Step one to avoiding frustration and defeat…make sure you have control over the required inputs for achieving the goal. For example, making a goal to get promoted to head of your department may seem good, but you don’t control promotions.

Instead, your goal could be to obtain an additional certification or skill that increases your chances of promotion.

We can imagine ourselves living in a series of spheres, with the first sphere being that which we control—things we can learn for ourselves, do for ourselves. 

The next sphere is that which we can influence—convincing others to provide resources or assistance that we can’t provide alone. 

Finally, there are many things that might stress or concern us, but into which we have very little or no input. The closer your goal is to the inner circle, the more chance of success you will have in achieving it.

The basic concept of circles of concern, influence, and control come from the late Dr. Stephen Covey. He gives a detailed explanation here:

We can help you achieve your goals @ Soft Power Skills Academy. 

We’re a professionally-guided online workshop using practical goal-related projects to build leadership & soft skills.

Join us @ https://www.softpowerskills.com#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Mind Tricks

Things aren’t always as they seem.

But we may prefer it that way.

Sometimes we want to be deceived. The power of expectation helps us enjoy life more. Imagine this story as Daniel Ariely tells it in his book Predictably Irrational: 

“Imagine walking into a truck stop off a deserted stretch of Interstate 95 at nine o’clock in the evening. You’ve been driving for six hours. You are tired and still have a long drive ahead of you. You need a bite to eat and want to be out of the car for a bit, so you walk into what appears to be a restaurant of sorts. It has the usual cracked-vinyl-covered booths and fluorescent lighting. The coffee-stained tabletops leave you a bit wary. Still, you think, “Fine, no one can screw up a hamburger that badly.” You reach for the menu, conveniently stashed behind an empty napkin dispenser, only to discover this is no ordinary greasy spoon. Instead of hamburgers and chicken sandwiches, you’re astonished to see that the menu offers foie gras au torchon, truffle pâté with frisée and fennel marmalade, gougères with duck confit, quail à la crapaudine, and so on. Items like this would be no surprise in even a small Manhattan restaurant, of course. And it is possible that the chef got tired of Manhattan, moved to the middle of nowhere, and now cooks for whoever happens through. 

So is there a key difference between ordering gougères with duck confit in Manhattan and ordering it at an isolated truck stop on I-95? If you encountered such French delicacies at the truck stop, would you be brave enough to try them? Suppose the prices were not listed on the menu. What would you be willing to pay for an appetizer or an entrée? And if you ate it, would you enjoy it as much as you might if you were eating the same food in Manhattan? 

Ambience and expectations do add a great deal to our enjoyment. You would expect less in such an environment, and as a consequence you would enjoy the experience at the truck stop less, even if you had the identical foie gras au torchon in both places. Likewise, if you knew that pâté is largely made of run-of-the-mill goose liver and butter rather than super special ingredients, you would enjoy it much less.”  

(Ariely, Dan. Predictably Irrational, Revised and Expanded Edition: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions (pp. 217-218). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.)

This is the same power of deceiving ourselves that make placebos work. Some people might be offended by “falseness in advertising” when they see how food pictures are taken; others might just enjoy the extra pleasure that comes from seeing mouth-watering pictures that fuel their imagination for a better tasting meal.

How Habits Work

Have you started thinking about making a New Years’ resolution yet? Our challenge will be overcoming old or starting new habits. One study showed only 46% of people who made a resolution were successful after 6 months.

According to The Power of Habit author Charles Duhigg, who gathered the latest scientific research, habits work in a loop. They start with a cue—something we experience in the environment regularly. Every response to that cue sets a pattern—a neurological pathway in our brain. Repeating the same response makes the nerve path stronger. That path leads to some reward, which the brain may register with a release of chemicals that are calming or pleasurable. That sends us back into the loop, so that we can get another reward. The craving for that reward is the power that fuels the cycle.

To start, stop, or change habits, we have to intervene somewhere on that cycle—at the cue, the routine, or reward. To start a running habit, for example, laying out clothes the night before can be the cue to start your new routine. To spend less time on Facebook, turning off the notifications eliminates the cue.

Watch an excellent interview with Charles Duhigg on his book The Power of Habit here:

Here’s Duhigg’s website with more information about habits and productivity: https://charlesduhigg.com/the-power-of-habit/

Start a habit of leadership & soft skill learning @ Soft Power Skills Academy. https://www.softpowerskills.com

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What’s The Price of Trust?

Trust is important in economies for reducing the cost of trade. But the marketplace has been a place where a few bad actors have driven down the general social level of trust. 

Behavioral economist Dan Ariely & some other researchers set out to measure how much trust people have in the market. They set up a booth in a Cambridge, Massachusetts mall with signs advertising “Free Money.” They had at different times $1, $10, $20, & $50 bills, one per “customer.” Most people walked right by the offer, not even asking about the deal. When researchers reached out to ask why, most said it looked like a scheme. The consumer has been conditioned to be so suspicious, they don’t even show interest in genuine beneficial offers.

Trust is a precious asset not easily measured in dollar terms, but invaluable in worth. Will platform economies like AirBnB or Grab help solve the trust problem? Customer reviews seem to help, but even sites like TripAdvisor have suffered from breaches of trust. Is it possible to grow the asset of trust in society?

Listen to Professor Ariely talk about the value of trust.

Learn & practice leader skills, like building trust, @ Soft Power Skills Academy. https://www.softpowerskills.com

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Building, Defending, & Maintaining Culture

The full story may not be out yet, but it appears that a Southwest Airlines gate agent acted inappropriately when she saw an unexpected name for a child. When a mother names a child with an unusual name that is not obvious how to pronounce, she might expect unusual reactions, but it appears that the gate agent went beyond surprise. What was certainly inappropriate, if true, was the agent posting the boarding card, with the child’s full name, on social media. This was an invasion of privacy & violated the child’s security.

Southwest Airlines is used in business schools across the US as a model company, particularly for its outstanding customer service and employee culture. Company culture must be so thorough & ingrained that it guarantees the front line–the face of the company to the customer–instinctively does the right thing. Southwest has been great at doing this, but this incident shows that companies can’t rest on their accomplishments.

It’s easy for the culture to get battered & eroded by the winds of a fast-changing, media-driven world. The leader’s job is to build, defend, & maintain the desired culture.

The USA Today version of the story is here: https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/news/2018/11/29/southwest-apologizes-after-girl-abcde-mocked-her-name/2148883002/

And you can read a short Forbes article extolling the company culture at Southwest Airlines here: https://www.forbes.com/sites/kenmakovsky/2013/11/21/behind-the-southwest-airlines-culture/

Learn & practice leadership & soft skills @ Soft Power Skills Academy. We offer a cost/time-effective alternate to MBA training. https://www.softpowerskills.com

Cultural Differences in Reading Context

It appears that culture heavily influences how well people incorporate the context of an environment versus how well they can filter out the context to focus on a prominent object. 

This has been illustrated in eye measurements of Asians versus North Americans as they evaluate photographs, of Japanese & Americans recalling foreground objects versus background details of fish in a video & in this interesting experiment measuring ability to reproduce a line in a different-sized frame.

Japanese subjects were more accurate at reproducing a line in relative size to the new frame, indicating they were better at seeing the whole frame-line picture together. The American subjects were more accurate reproducing the central object, the line, regardless of frame size.

It might be that Collectivist/Interdependent cultures promote seeing things more relationally & holistically, while Individualist/Dependent cultures promote seeing individual things more analytically.

Learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft skills at Soft Power Skills Academy, online with fellow high achievers working together on practical projects that put principles into action.  https://www.softpowerskills.com

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Looking Below the Surface

“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” How many times have you heard this?

If something is functioning well, why mess with it? This complacency attitude leads to stagnation at best, disaster at worst.

In 2007 a formidable fighter in the US arsenal experienced a catastrophic break-up during a routine flight. It turns out a structural part running the length of the plane, a “longeron,” had fatigue cracks that caused failure. Looking at other aircraft found that many such longerons were out of tolerance for required strength, some by as much as 40%! Before this accident (the pilot survived, the 41.7 million USD aircraft didn’t, and thankfully affected no one on the ground), no one had bothered to “look under the hood” to anticipate problems due to repeated stress on the fighter.

As General Powell said, we can’t shrink from looking below the surface just because we’re too lazy or too afraid to find something we don’t like. When things are going well is exactly the time to anticipate your future.

Anticipate your future @ Soft Power Skills Academy. We’re a cost/time effective alternate to an MBA providing leadership & soft skill online collaborative projects, professionally coached. https://www.softpowerskills.com

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Can You “Unhear” Confirmation  Bias?

You are constantly changing…the “You” before you heard the recording and the “You” after the recording are like 2 different beings. Once we hold a pattern in our brains, it becomes very difficult to undo it, & our brain will easily seek out similar patterns. When we acquire a certain belief, we’ll see things that confirm that belief, even in a chaotic environment. 

This way of brain functioning was probably helpful for survival in a predatory world, where learning patterns of dangerous animals kept us away from them; but in the modern world, it’s difficult to learn new things if we keep looking for old patterns. We may think that we’re doing good research on a topic to enlighten ourselves, but this bias directs our attention to the things that we want to find, making it easy to either entrench wrong beliefs, or miss new truths. Overcoming the bias is difficult, but becoming aware of it is a 1ststep.

I’ve written a short article on some methods that might help overcome confirmation bias @ https://andamaninspirations.com/2018/04/26/seeing-red-7-ways-to-overcome-your-confirmation-bias/

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, we build self-awareness & leadership skills. Learn more @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

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East-West Differences in Reasoning

Slide1Can something be true and not true at the same time? East Asian & Western philosophies have had very different ways of answering this question that still affects the ways people in various cultures reason.The collectivist culture of Asia emphasizes harmony & a constantly changing environment in which contradictions are natural, & truth depends on the context. Maintaining the order of relationships is paramount.Individualist cultures share a philosophical background that searched for the essential non-changing properties of objects. This philosophy was the foundation of science that searches for immutable “Laws.”These philosophies aren’t just esoteric words…they become embedded in the cultures through religion & education & tradition. The experimental database is not yet huge, but more studies are showing that East-West/Asian-Non-Asian/Interdependent-Independent cultures see the world in very different, significant ways.Learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft skills @ Soft Power Skills Academy. We’re a cost/time-effective alternative to MBA training.Apply @ https://www.softpowerskills.com#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

The Power of Thankfulness

Slide1

Thankfulness empowers us. Thankfulness brings positive outcomes. Thankfulness is a powerful tool for leaders.Shawn Achor’s book The Happiness Advantage is an excellent resource that you can find here: http://www.shawnachor.com/the-books/the-happiness-advantage/He also has one of the most popular TED talks with over 18 million views on the subject, which you can watch here:

Communicating Thai Culture Through Body Language

Body language speaks much louder than words! The verbal portion of a message is responsible for only 7% of what people remember…body language accounts for 55% of what people retain. Body language is particularly important in the collectivist culture of Thailand, where it communicates the social order & respect.

 I found a cute school project that some Thai students produced. Unfortunately they didn’t post enough information to give any more credit than this…their longer original is at

My edited version illustrates some important gestures, facial expressions, & postures for maintaining proper relationships in Thai culture—both what to do & what to not do. 

Effective intercultural communication starts with understanding that others see the world differently than we do.

Learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft skills @ Soft Power Skills Academy https://www.softpowerskills.com, an online face-to-face, professionally-guided workshop that puts principles into practice. We’re a more cost-time effective alternative to traditional MBA programs.

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How Different Cultures See Bad Behavior

Slide1

The arrest of Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn shocked the financial world. Will his behavior be attributed to the context of the situation, or will he be vilified for having a bad character?

The story is still developing, but there is interesting evidence that Dependent and Interdependent cultures see causes for behavior differently. A study of Chinese & American news stories on mass murder cases showed significant differences in attributing cause to either the environment or to the individual.

Other studies have shown Hindu Indians gave twice as much contextual reasons for behavior than Americans, and Hong Kong football fans blamed circumstances while Americans blamed players.

This may connect to Collectivist culture emphasis on relationships & context, while Individualist cultures see internal forces in the individual as more important.

Learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft skills at Soft Power Skills Academy.

How Toddlers Learn to See The World According to Their Culture

Several studies indicate that children in more individualist culture countries learn to identify & classify objects faster than those in collectivist cultures. 

This could be language-related, as Asian languages don’t distinguish generic names that indicate category. In English, if I say “the ducks,” it is specific, but if I use just “ducks” it indicates the general category. Many Asian languages don’t make this distinction, making categorization more ambiguous.

But the western tendency to categorize objects rather than see holistically may go beyond the influence of language.  In at least one study, Japanese mothers would use toys to teach social norms. They might give a toy car to their child, then teach about politeness with language. “Here is the car. Say hello to the car. I give it to you. Now you give it to me. Very good! Thank you!” The American mothers tended to use descriptions, saying things like “cars have wheels, they go fast” or other things to teach the concept of the category of cars.

It may be that individualist cultures teach children to see unique differences in objects, while collectivist cultures emphasize inter-relatedness.

You can read the report about American and Japanese mothers here:

Learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft power skills at Soft Power Skills Academy. https://www.softpowerskills.com

East-West Differences in Seeing: Object or Substance?

An intriguing experiment may show cultural difference in how people see the world—either as discrete & differentiated objects or as interconnected substances. 

Told that a simple shape & material item (like a cork cone) was an imaginary name (dax), Americans & Japanese were asked to choose either same shape/different material or same material/different shape as another dax. Americans tended to classify by object, Japanese by substance. 

While English language distinguishes nouns as differentiated things or substances, many Asian languages don’t make this distinction so clearly. This is why learners of English as a 2nd language have difficulty distinguishing the use of “much” versus “many.” 

Philosophies emphasizing harmony & nature, like Taoism, or religion emphasizing connectedness with the natural world, like Buddhism, influence Asian culture to see the world holistically. Western philosophies that break the world into forms & their attributes promote seeing the world as distinct objects that can be analyzed individually. This is just one interpretation of a few experiments & cultural observations, but it’s certainly worth pondering the ways in which cultures might truly see differently. 

You can read the report of one of the experiments here:

Learn culturally-relevant leadership skills @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

East-West Differences in Time Perception

Most of us recognize that time is treated differently in different cultures. This usually comes up when someone from another culture is late for a meeting & makes a joke about being on “local” time.

But there are deeper consequences of the truth that people experience time differently depending on their cultural background. Many Asian cultures, even in modern times, are affected by religious & political views of time going in cycles. Beings reincarnate, empires come & go, families rise & fall & rise again. Western culture, whether from religious views of progress to a final heavenly destination or evolutionary, utopian political visions, see time trending in a line. 

These views affect the way we see our present & future. One experiment showed that Americans expected trends to continue in the same direction, especially if the data showed acceleration. Many Chinese saw accelerating data as a sign that a reversal would be coming up. 

You can see the experiment write-up below:

Rather than judging whether one view is better than the other, it’s wise to be aware of our own perspective & understand that of others.

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, a time/cost-effective alternative to an MBA, we learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft skills.

Learn more @ https://www.softpowerskills.com #Nspyr

The East-West Divide in Thinking

Studies in western societies show people have an inflated view of self. Whether it’s drivers, students, or college professors, most rate their own abilities as higher than others, & westerners evaluate themselves as unique in ways they aren’t. This overconfidence bias, however, appears to weaken as it crosses the East-West divide. 

An experiment may suggest why cultures think differently in self-assessment. Japanese & Canadian students were given a fake creativity test that randomly gave positive or negative evaluations. After the feedback, subjects were left alone & told they could work on a similar test to improve. Observations showed that Japanese with low scores worked longer, while it was high-scoring Canadians who showed interest in improving—Canadians assigned low scores dismissed the critique. 

Japanese live in a collectivist culture, where one’s role in & contribution to society is more highly valued. The reaction to criticism is to get better at filling the role. Canadians in individualist culture are more focused on standing out with unique characteristics. They want to enhance their individuality by improving perceived strengths.

Learn & practice intercultural leadership soft skills @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

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Asian-Western Cognitive Differences

Have you ever been in a foreign country & discovered that people just don’t think like you do?

Researcher Richard Nisbett has found specific differences in the way  Asians & Westerners see the world. In one experiment, Chinese & American eye movements were tracked as they viewed pictures with a central object against a complex background for 3 seconds. Westerners focused more quickly, & for a longer period, on the central object, while Chinese considered more of the background image. 

Asian collectivist culture looks at an object in relationship to its context to understand its importance & meaning. Individualist Western culture tends to break things down, or analyze (the Greek root for “analysis” means to break apart or loosen), things to understand the object’s properties. 

These are very different ways of thinking which can easily make us feel like we just don’t get the way other people think. Recognizing that there are different ways of seeing, however, is a 1st step in bridging the East-West gap.

You can read more about Nisbett and team’s work at http://www.pnas.org/content/102/35/12629

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, we explore leadership & soft skills in an intercultural context via practical projects produced by small teams of high-performers like you working together online. Learn more @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

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Humble Leadership

This composite image shows the progression of a partial solar eclipse over Ross Lake, in Northern Cascades National Park, Washington on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017. A total solar eclipse swept across a narrow portion of the contiguous United States from Lincoln Beach, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina. A partial solar eclipse was visible across the entire North American continent along with parts of South America, Africa, and Europe. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

Cosmic events are always good reminders of our humble place in the vastness of space. 

In August 2017 a total eclipse swept over the United States, dubbed “The Great American Eclipse.” It’s an amazing coincidence of timing that the moon is the just the right size to produce this phenomenon—the moon’s body is the perfect size and distance to match the apparent size of the sun because, although the sun is 400 times bigger than the moon, it’s also 400 times closer to earth. But the moon is slowly pulling away from us (by 3.8 centimeters/year), so this won’t always be the case. In about 50 million years, the moon will be too far away to completely block the sun from our view.

Humility that can come from considering “Vastness at every opportunity in order to see the smallness of yourself” is a key ingredient of effective leadership. Leaders often rise through the ranks because of strong self-confidence, but this makes us vulnerable to making ourselves seem too important. History is full of leaders whose pride became their downfall. Pride stops us from developing human potential in others, and blinds us to innovation & change. 

So, here’s a leadership tip for tonight—gaze up into the cosmos, & consider your smallness.

Learn leadership @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

ความนอบน้อม ของผู้นำ

This composite image shows the progression of a partial solar eclipse over Ross Lake, in Northern Cascades National Park, Washington on Monday, Aug. 21, 2017. A total solar eclipse swept across a narrow portion of the contiguous United States from Lincoln Beach, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina. A partial solar eclipse was visible across the entire North American continent along with parts of South America, Africa, and Europe. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

มองไปที่ท้องฟ้า

          เพื่อเตือนตัวเองเรื่องจักรวาล

จงค้นหา“ความกว้างใหญ่”

          ของทุกโอกาส

แทนการเห็นแค่เพียง ความเล็ก  ของตัวเอง

         — แมทท์ เฮก, นักเขียนชาวอังกฤษ 

Break Your Barriers!

Paradigms are the way we see the world–and we don’t see the world as it is, but as we are. 

Through the centuries of human history, advances have been made by breaking paradigms to see things in a new way. 

What things inside of us are holding us back from a new vision and positive change?

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, we challenge you to see the world in new ways. You’ll work with small teams of fellow high-performers & a professional coach to study & apply leadership & soft power skill lessons to deliver goal-related projects that put principles into practice. We do this face-to-face, online, via Zoom video and Slack collaboration tools. We’re a more time efficient & cost effective alternative to old-style MBA programs that help you break your barriers & soar to your next level. 

Learn more and apply @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

“We think we see the world as it is, when in fact we see the world as we are.”
-Stephen R. Covey, psychologist and author

 “The earth is at the center of the universe.”
-Ptolemy, 170 AD

“This ‘telephone’has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us.”

-Western Union, 1881

“The horse is here to stay, but the automobile is only a novelty.”
-President of the Michigan Savings Bank, 1903

“Television won’t be able to hold onto any market it captures after the first 6 months. People will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night.”
-Darryl F. Zanuck, President of 20th Century Fox, 1946

“Man will never reach the moon regardless of all future scientific advances.”
-Lee de Forest, inventor of the radio tube, 1967

“There’s no reason for any individual to have a computer in their home.”
-Kenneth Olsen, founder of Digital Equipment Corporation, 1977

#Nspyr #SoftPowerSkills #InspireEmpowerChange

ทำลายกระบวนทัศน์เดิมของคุณ!

กระบวนทัศน์เป็นวิธีที่เรามองโลก และเราไม่เห็นโลกในแบบที่โลกเป็น แต่อย่างที่เราเป็น

ตลอดหลายศตวรรษในประวัติศาสตร์ของมนุษย์ ความก้าวหน้าเกิดขึ้นได้จากการทำลายกระบวนทัศน์เพื่อให้เห็นสิ่งต่างๆในรูปแบบใหม่

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, we challenge you to see the world in new ways. You’ll work with small teams of fellow high-performers & a professional coach to study & apply leadership & soft power skill lessons to deliver goal-related projects that put principles into practice. We do this face-to-face, online, via Zoom video and Slack collaboration tools. We’re a more time efficient & cost effective alternative to old-style MBA programs that help you break your barriers & soar to your next level. 

Learn more and apply @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

“โลกเป็นศูนย์กลางของจักรวาล”

โตเลมี,ค.ศ. 170

“โทรศัพท์นี้ มีข้อบกพร่องมากเกินกว่าจะถือเป็นเครื่องมือสื่อสาร อุปกรณ์นี้ไม่มีค่าสำหรับพวกเราเลย”

เวสเทิร์น ยูเนียน, 1881

“ม้าคือยานพาหนะที่แท้จริง แต่รถยนต์เป็นแค่ความแปลกใหม่”

ประธานมิชิแกน เซฟวิ่งส์ แบงค์, 1903

“หลังเปิดตัวครั้งแรก6เดือน โทรทัศน์ไม่มีทางติดตลาดได้ ผู้คนจะเริ่มเบื่อหน่ายการจ้องตู้ไม้อัดทุกคืนในเวลาไม่นาน”

ดาร์ริล เอฟ. ซานัค, ประธานบริษัททเวนตี้ เซนจูรี่ ฟอกซ์, 1946

“มนุษย์ไม่มีวันเหยียบดวงจันทร์ได้ ไม่ว่าจะมีความก้าวหน้าทางวิทยาศาสตร์เพียงใดก็ตาม”

ลี เดอ ฟอเรสต์, ผู้ประดิษฐ์หลอดวิทยุ, 1967

“ไม่มีเหตุผลที่บุคคลจะมีคอมพิวเตอร์ไว้ใช้ที่บ้านของตัวเอง”

เคนเนธ โอลเซน, ผู้ก่อตั้งดิจิทัล อีควิปเมนต์ คอร์เปอเรชั่น, 1977

“เราคิดว่าเราเห็นโลกในแบบที่โลกเป็น แต่ความจริง คือ เรามองโลกในแบบที่เราเป็น”

สตีเฟน อาร์. โควีย์, นักจิตวิทยาและผู้เขียน

Lessons from the 1st Platform Economy

For 100 years, Sears ran a platform economy via its Sears catalogue. People spread across vast remote regions could get information about goods & order them for delivery, greatly reducing transaction costs. Sears wasn’t selling stoves, cattle feed, or clothing so much as it was providing information & connecting people.

It shut down its famous mail-order catalogue in 1993. Jeff Bezos founded Amazon the next year, 1994. 

How could the giant retailer Sears miss the digital application of their famous catalogue?

Were their executives telling themselves a story that missed future opportunities?

Had they become too proud & complacent?

Is the Sears’ story relevant to Amazon & other businesses?

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, we explore self-narratives, break boundaries, & prepare you for the future. Learn more & apply @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

China’s Rise: Opportunity in Disruption

Disruptive innovation. Creative destruction. These are popular buzzwords that we might apply to a rapidly changing world economy. China’s relative & absolute rise in wealth has been astounding over the last 40 years. Their presence in the Asian & world market is certainly disruptive to the old order. This change is happening in the context of rapid technological change in the market as well.

What does all this mean to you personally?

Do you feel prepared for a disrupted world?

In disruption, there is always opportunity for innovation.

We have to make our skills sets as responsive as possible, sharpening our unique leadership, inter-cultural communication, & other soft power skills.

People who can take the considerable time & money for an MBA might get those skills—but there’s another choice.

@ Soft Power Skills Academy, you work on goal-related projects with other high-performers to put principles into practice. It’s done conveniently, face-to-face, online with professional guidance. Learn more & apply @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Bad Boss Big Loss

My brother works at a small start-up manufacturing consumer dietary products, & recently told me a story with a good lesson.

The boss has been very successful in growing this company, & knows his product & market very well.

But product competency doesn’t equal leadership competency.

In a recent meeting, in which this boss quizzes his employees on information relevant to their manufacturing operations, he directed a review question to a female employee, “How many grams in a kilogram?” Whether due to the pressure of the situation, or actual forgetfulness, she could not recall the answer, which sent the boss into a fit of rage. “How many times do we have to go over this #!@*!!! blah blah blah.”

That day, the woman walked off the job & hasn’t returned.

So now this small company has to find, hire, & train a new recruit. While this boss has been counting pennies, he’s driven pounds of cash out his door.

What would you do in this situation if you were

  1. that female worker? or

2. a co-worker witnessing the event?

Learn leadership @ Soft Power Skills Academy. https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Making Judgment Calls

People see leaders who make sound judgment calls as heroes; those who show poor judgment–the marketplace rarely treats them well. But making calls can’t be avoided when you’re in charge.

Sound judgment is a key leadership trait that can be developed with thought & practice. Business professors Tichy & Bennis found that leaders make important calls in 3 areas: people, strategy, or crisis. They also identify judgement calls as a process in 3 stages, rather than a single event: Preparation, Call, Execution.

Like the Chinese ideograms depicting cutting instruments & cut cloth, a leader needs to carefully prepare according to a pattern, make the decision to cut, & then take ownership of the decision. Taking ownership means having flexibility & humility to admit poor judgment, & adjusting the decision where possible.

Learn judgment & leadership skills @ Soft Power Skills Academy, & put principles into practice. Learn more at https://www.softpowerskills.com

You can read Tichy & Bennis’ Harvard Business Review article @ https://hbr.org/2007/10/making-judgment-calls

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

The Space Between Stimulus & Response

As of 2015 YouTube had over 2 million cat videos! But no matter how amusing they are, I’m glad that I’m not a cat. Cats are mastered by their environment, reacting to stimuli & immediately responding. They sense food, danger, or a pretty young feline, and have automatic responses. But automatic responses are not always a good thing, especially in our human society.

Responding to stimuli with auto-responses of anger or jealousy, for example, could easily get us in trouble. Fortunately, our brain allows humans to pause in that gap between stimulus & response.

Facing death in WWII extermination camp, Viktor Frankl found the one area over which he had absolute control was the gap between stimulus & response. Having choice gave him freedom & growth.

We can make a choice to take more control of our destiny. At Soft Power Skills Academy, we provide an online face-to-face workshop where you can soar to your next level with other high-performing, hard-charging people. We work together on putting principles of leadership and soft power skills into practice with engaging, meaningful projects. Accept the challenge and join us! https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

On Sunday 28 October 2018 Soft Power Skills Academy joined the fight against breast cancer at Wacoal Motion Run (21.1 & 10.55 km). According to the World Health Organization, breast cancer is the most common cancer in women around the world…but women in developed countries have a significantly higher survival rate (80% in North America, Sweden, & Japan versus 40% in Low-Income countries), mostly due to ability to detect early & get adequate treatment in time.

There are many ways to make postive change in this world. Educating about the importance of early cancer detection, and helping make it financially possible when we can, is one of them. hashtag#SoftPowerSkillshashtag#Nspyrhashtag#InspireEmpowerChange

Making Pro-Pro Charts To Overcome Biases

Are you a Microsoft or Apple fan?

For over 30 years 2 tech giants have used very different marketing strategies, with avid fans on both sides of the argument. With strong biases, many are either avid Apple or Microsoft fans with no in-between. But if you were looking to these as models to decide your own strategy, how could you make an optimum decision?

One superior method is to set up extremes, setting aside critical comments (at 1st), and learning to fall in love with the best of both models. This is the Integrative Thinking method of Dr. Roger Martin in Creating Great Choices.

The 2ndof 4 steps in the method helps us overcome confirmation bias by making a Pro-Pro chart, rather than Pro-Con. Take the tough either/or choices – i.e. exclusive product that controls quality vs inclusive with more compatibility; centralize vs decentralize; standardized vs customized product – and find the good in each extreme. From there, use integrative methods to find a better solution.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Listen to Dr. Roger Martin explain Integrative Thinking

Soft Power Skills Academy explores & practices decision-making methods with practical projects in online workshops for high-performance leaders ready to soar to their next level. Join us. Accept the challenge for a better solution.

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Capturing the Speed of Light

Scientists have captured real-time video of light splitting at a barrier…at a mind-blowing 10 trillion frames per second. At the Caltech Optical Imaging Laboratory, scientists developed this compressed ultrafast photography (T-CUP) to capture for the 1sttime a single ultrashort laser pulse as it hits & splits at a beam splitter.

Technologies are constantly advancing, faster & faster. But the real challenge is asking the right questions about how to apply technology, and what is the meaning for humanity. You don’t have to be a physics professor or rocket scientist to learn & employ those skills.

At Soft Power Skills Academy, we bring together busy, forward-looking people online in face-to-face workshops, collaborating on meaningful projects that incorporate lessons on leadership & soft power skills, to put principles into practice.

Learn more & apply @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

We’re All Leaders

If you want engagement and ownership from people in the workplace, you can start by helping everyone realize that they are leaders…all the time.

From the new hire who steps in the door, to the 30-year veteran (if those still exist in this business environment!), everyone in the organization is somewhere along a Leaders’ Spectrum. And individuals change their position both left and right depending on their circumstance. That new gal is learning to lead from her immediate boss. She becomes super competent and now mentors the new hires after her, so she’s leading followers. She gets promoted to lead a small team, and now she’s back to learning to lead, until she develops competency in that position…and so on up the chain.

To connect with other high performers sharpening their leadership & soft power skills, check out Soft Power Skills Academy @ https://www.softpowerskills.comWe’re an online, face-to-face workshop working on meaningful projects that put principles into practice.

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

3 Requirements for Good Decisions

“People make good choices in contexts in which they have experience, good information, and prompt feedback.”

Which of these 3 elements required for good decisions is usually most difficult to obtain? What specific ways can you improve each of those areas for yourself or your team?

These are good questions for supervisors and other decision-makers to ponder.

At Soft Power Skills Academy, we bring together people with a relentless drive to learn more, to improve, to succeed, to build relationships, and to change the world for the better. We achieve leadership skills using online Zoom video sessions and Slack collaboration apps, guided by a professional coach, producing meaningful projects that turn principles into practice. It’s all done in convenient hours so that you can work and employ the skills you’re learning…no need to take years off and spend thousands for an old-style MBA. Learn more and apply at https://www.softpowerskills.com.

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Our Irrational Vulnerabilities

Your decision-making is more vulnerable to irrational thought than you’re probably willing to admit, according to scientists. Dr. Ariely describes experiments showing “anchoring,” in which an unrelated piece of information, just by being received first in a decision-making sequence, influences our decisions. For example, he had students write down the last 2 digits of their social security number (SSN) next to a list of items. He then asked them to write how much they would pay for the items. Those with lower SSNs bid much lower than those with higher SSNs.

When geese are born, they will become attached to and start following the 1st moving animal they see, usually their mother. A scientist studying them found that they became attached to him instead of their mother if he was their 1st encounter. This is like anchoring.

In order to escape from becoming a cooked goose, we need to constantly challenge our assumptions. Recognize when you’re anchoring & consider the opportunity cost of following that impulse versus choosing something else.

Learn & practice leadership & decision-making skills at Soft Power Skills Academy. Meet with other high-performers in live online, professionally coached sessions to co-create meaningful projects that put principles into practice.

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

This was the 2nd baby in 2 years to be discharged from a Florida hospital with surgical needles still in the heart.

Discipline & Teamwork Can Prevent Leaving Needles in Infant Hearts

How is it possible a needle can be left in a child’s heart after surgery, not once, but twice, in 2 years at the same hospital? The medical profession still suffers from too many human errors. A 2016 Johns Hopkins study estimated that more than 250,000 deaths per year were due to medical error in the U.S. alone!

Decades ago, the aviation industry also suffered from too many human errors, in an era when the aircraft captains (perhaps like some of today’s surgeons) often acted like untouchable deities whose authority went unquestioned. But the industry, commercial and military, brought about culture change by 1. insisting on disciplined use of checklists and 2. normalizing teamwork through Crew Resource Management (CRM). In simulators and daily work, crews worked together sharing responsibilities. Now, if a flight attendant sees something amiss & asks a captain to abort a landing & go around, the captain safely does so. Hard to see a nurse telling a surgeon he may have missed a needle…but that needs to happen.The competence and courage to speak up like that comes from developing your soft skills. Please take a look at Soft Power Skills Academy & step up your skills.

A Belgian Air Force mechanic accidentally fired 20mm rounds into and destroying an F-16 while performing maintenance on another F-16. 

Every Team Member is Important!

Every team member is important! In a High Reliability Organization (HRO), every team member, no matter their position, must learn & practice the operational discipline of checklists & situational awareness.

Mechanics are often unsung heroes in the aviation world. Fighter pilots get the attention & glory, but the maintainers make their exploits possible. In a serious accident like this, their connection to the mission, & ability to have an impact, becomes painfully visible…but we shouldn’t jump to put 100% of the blame on this technician.

Accident review should hopefully find a way to alter the system to prevent firing live rounds during maintenance, or change procedures that prevent damage in the unlikely event they are fired.

The investigation team can review the training & coaching received by maintainers as well. Are they included in the organizational culture of strict adherence to checklist procedures? Are they given training in situational awareness…or just taught how to fix airplanes? In an HRO, every player is important.

Learn leadership, teamwork, & soft power skills at Soft Power Skills Academy. Check out https://www.softpowerskills.com

Amara’s Law & Underestimating the Future

It seems the robot revolution is always “just around the corner.”

Truckers and taxi-drivers may be worried their jobs will be gone within a few years.

Patients wonder why our bio-technology hasn’t cured cancer after decades of research.

While technological advances are impressive, our expectations exceed reality…in the short run.

When Automated Teller Machines came on the scene, the banking world thought that teller jobs would disappear nearly overnight. In fact, they didn’t…but their roles evolved to other customer services, while technology indeed brought profound & unexpected changes to the financial sector.

In our instant gratification world, we think new technologies will have an immediate effect. But our short-term excitement turns to disappointment, or loss of interest, when changes don’t occur right away. This leads us to be caught unaware by the long-term effects.

Key to your success with any technological change is your mastery of the soft power skills of leadership. Soft Power Skills Academy cost & time-effectively develops these via collaborative, professionally-guided online workshops with practical, meaningful projects. Prepare for your future success @ https://www.softpowerskills.com

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #InspireEmpowerChange

Scientists @ Nanyang Technological University in Singapore built a robot algorithm to put together an Ikea chair.

AI may not just take your job…it will replace your role as handy-person in the home!

We may fear the onslaught of new technology, but a couple of IT experts envision a less fearsome future of robotics and humans. In “Human + Machine: Reimagining Work in the Age of AI” authors Paul Daugherty and James Wilson assert that we need not (and maybe cannot) be replaced by AI, but we can become more productive. For that to happen, we have to think more creatively and develop our superior human skills (which don’t include screwing chairs together). Daugherty identifies emotive capability, communication, improvisation, and generalization as some of the things humans do better than machines. The book explores “fusion skills,’ such as “judgment integration,” which involves decision-making that combines human and algorithm judgment.

Daugherty says in an interview on HBR Ideacast, in 5 years “I think we’ll be talking about the lack of more human-oriented skills, humanities types of skills that can design the experiences and manage the experiences that we’re creating using AI as we reimagine businesses, as we reshape products to use technology to interact with humans in a more human-like way.”

Join us at https://www.softpowerskills.com/ for a collaborative online workshop improving human skills!

#SoftPowerSkills #Nspyr #StayOnTheLeadingEdge

18 April 2018 a catastrophic failure of an engine killed one passenger.

3 Observations About the Southwest Airlines Incident.

1. The calm, collected reaction of the aircrew comes from a disciplined, checklist culture that doesn’t just happen on its own or overnight. The checklists covered the basics of engine failure, rapid depressurization, and structural damage. The confidence and efficiency provided by the checklists freed the minds of the pilot team to creatively deal with all the unforeseeable details, especially the human component.

2. Cognitive bias causes us to vastly overestimate the risk of events that are dramatic and visible. Though terrible for the deceased mother, it’s extremely rare for a jet engine to disintegrate and throw debris that injures a person. On the other hand, 500 people died & 39,000 were injured in a 4-year period on US roads simply due to debris in the road.

3. Ignorance leads to panic. Aircraft are designed for safety-the engine hangs from a pylon under the wing, which keeps the plane safe even with a raging engine fire. The procedure for depressurization is to immediately descend, which some passengers took as the aircraft “going down.”Knowledge leads to calmness.

We deal with life more easily when we practice disciplined mindfulness, recognize our biases, and continually seek knowledge. https://www.softpowerskills.com/

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