I would like to share a very inspiring post that I came across. The original posting can be found here 5 Great Habits Successful Young Professionals Need to Develop. If you are looking for a public speaking trainer then read more about Benjamin Loh.  Now, enjoy this awesome post.

 

Gone are the days where it’s sufficient to graduate with a decent-enough degree, cruise along your new-found career and just check in and out at work.

Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and author of ‘The Startup of You’, also espouses the importance of taking charge of your personal brand and to look at your own career trajectory as a series of iterations.

Plan, ship, iterate. Just like how start-ups do.

Career linearity is almost unheard of these days.

Likewise, organizations are recognizing the importance of bringing out the best from this breed of young professionals, or the Gen-Ys, as we call it. The danger therein occurs when young professionals become complacent and lose the drive to develop themselves professionally.

As a young professional and speaker who speaks on the importance for ‘Connecting for Success’ myself, I have put together ‘5 Great Habits Successful Young Professionals Need to Develop’.

These insights are derived both from learning the growth trajectories of my business and corporate mentors as well as from my reading over 100 personal development titles.

1. Develop Curiosity & T-shaped Mastery

(Image quoted from BIM + Integrated Design)

The concept of a T-shaped business professional has its roots in a 1990 study on hybrid managers and have been used as a concept for selection and training by companies like Mckinsey & Co and IDEO.

In essence, T-shaped professionals have both deep and broad knowledge and expertise. They are typically trained across multiple disciplines and systems and have considerable depth in a one or two disciplines or systems.

The problem with most young professionals is that we tend to discount or do away with the whole notion of continual learning and growth after we step into the corporate workplace. We stop being curious and asking questions. Instead, we become comfortable with what we know. Hence, the proverbial curse of knowledge.

Yet, T-shaped mastery is key for a couple reasons

  1. Problem solving – with deep functional experience expressed by the T’s stem and with broad and diverse skills, executives can deploy a synergistic and convergent type of thinking to solve problems instead of being stubbornly fixated on that one way of doing things. Think how a marketing executive can get creative by understanding and appreciating budget constraints and tap into guerrilla marketing techniques.
  2. Relational lubricant – it is not uncommon to be working with co-workers across other functions or meeting executives at events from other fields, being broadly aware and informed gives you the ability gives you more talking points to establish common ground and connect in more meaningful manners. This way, you open more doors that would otherwise be closed to you because you thought you don’t speak their language!
  3. Organizational mastery – it keeps you a perspective of “being on top” of the business instead of just being “in the business” all the time. From a practical stand point, it aids you in communicating business agenda in a more holistic manner so you can seek more win-win partnerships instead of zero-sum games.

What executives can do – read widely and continually, upgrade yourselves with courses and seek specialist and coaches to deepen your learning and discover your blind spots.

2. Seek Mentorship

 

I’ll be the first to acknowledge that my growth is largely attributed to the intervention of my mentors. And I’m certain I’m not the first nor last person to invest in this belief.

The value of mentorship comes in when you have someone who has walked the talk or the path you like to see yourself walking 10 to 20 years down the road and are willing to commit in a mutually benefiting relationship that can forward both of you, professionally and personally.

In fact, I was an interviewee among 19 other entrepreneurs and “heavyweights” in a book called ‘Seek to Keep – How to find the best mentors and keep them’.

The biggest challenge facing young professionals is often in the approaching of mentors. Often times, the biggest barrier is ourselves.

We stop short by doubting ourselves and our potential mentors on why they would want to invest time and energy on us. But the truth is what’s the worst that could happen?

Rejections? And then we move on. Yet from my experiences, a lot of senior executives and entrepreneurs out there who are likewise playing mentor roles do it willingly and without expecting anything in return because they feel they are passing on the light.

In my blog, I’ve mentioned three ways young professionals can go about establishing mentoring relationship,

  1. Give advice (and solutions) to your mentors – find out what are your key expertise and knowledge that will be of value to your mentors and give generously
  2. Give connections to your mentors – are you widely connected to people across different circuits? If yes, be a relationship broker and make connections happen for your mentors
  3. Give your word that you will give it your all while putting their advice into action – don’t be a smooth talker and empty vessel. Make the best use of your mentor’s energy and time and commit to action. Evaluate and update your mentor of your progress

In short, make the best on their investment in time, energy and resources on you and evidence them in your growth.

3. Get Out There and Network, Period!

I know. Not everyone is comfortable with networking because one, it takes you out of your comfort zone and two, the stereotypes and associations with networking can be sometimes, negative.

The first part is probably no stranger to me since I’m an introvert by nature as well but for professionals who think they are shy or not so sociable, you need to know the magic is in taking the first step.

Secondly about stereotypes and associations, I’m for the belief that networking in essence is still relationship building and we should be all familiar with that from various people who speaks on building meaningful relationships.

Like it or not, the truth is people don’t buy what you do or sell but people buy you as an individual first. But if you don’t take the first step to be out there (either physically or digitally), who’s going to buy you?

Treat networking as a process of being genuinely interested to know someone else and when the relationship has been built, that it makes a lot more sense to mention about business agenda. Never step into a networking space with the mentality of a “hunter” because people can sniff it from miles away.

I once had a client who had issues networking because she thought that networking was about being putting up a false or fake front but after coaching her, she realized a lot of the misconceptions was all due to the projections of mistrust she had displaced from herself onto the people she meet at networking.

Recognizing that gave her a lot of clarity and freedom and let her embrace networking as freely without any prior judgments or misconceptions and most importantly, enjoy it.

So where can young professionals network?

  1. Trade specific organizations – Like the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Singapore (ICPAS) for the accounting professionals and the equivalents like Singapore Infocomm Technology Federation (SITF) for IT professionals, Asia Professional Speakers Singapore (APSS) for professionals who want to develop themselves as professional speakers
  2. Professional organizations – Young Women Leadership Council (YWLC), Primetime Singapore, organizations for Professionals, Mangers, Executives and Technicians (PMETs) and Business Network International (BNI)
  3. Voluntary & interest based organizations – Lions, Rotary and Toastmasters

The key here is to start and commit to growing your social capital.

You don’t have to come off as a social butterfly (if you can, great) but be willing to stay open in reaching out. You never know who’s the next person who may lead you to a next business lead, job referral or even… soul mate! I kid you not.

4. Be Visible and Seen For Your Merits and Value

 

Visibility is about ensuring you are known and seen and for the right reason and cause, of course.

My experience is that young professionals in Singapore (and Asia) tend not to be comfortable with “blowing their own trumpets” even though they are outstanding in their own right and have done great work.

My business mentor who is an American growing up in New York shared with me how people in the US are taught to stand out and be remarkable while people in Asia tend to play down their achievements and not want to be in the limelight because it makes them feel as if they stick out like a sore thumb.

The Japanese proverb has some truth here.

“The nail that sticks out gets hammered down”

Singaporeans and Asians, in general are known to be industrious and steady workers but to up the ante, is really to be comfortable of selling ourselves especially to people that matter like our management in the boardroom and for entrepreneurs, our clients and investors.

We need to get comfortable being seen for who we are and what we can be capable of.

What can be done?

  1. Do a self-audit of your achievements and mistakes every quarterly – this way, you keep track of what you’ve done and not done. For all that you’ve done, ask yourself, “What can I appreciate myself for in making this project or endeavor happen or not happen?”
  2. Have an accountability and acknowledgement partner – an accountability partner holds you to your commitments and at the same time, acknowledge you if you have difficulties acknowledging yourself. He or she is like your source of “soft love” if you are especially known to be tough on yourself.
  3. Be conscious about how and what you talk about yourself – take some time to reflect on how you’ve presented yourself to new faces and if you have trusted associates, do a 1 minute spiel of yourself and your key highlights and ask for feedback. Were you too uncertain, overly-modest or hesitant? Work on it.

Yes, self-promotion, especially without substance is shame.

But once you are certain you are growing and doing great work, the next step is really to be seen by who needs to see you.

One immediate platform for visibility that’s most accessible but often neglected is to serve. Whether it’s to volunteer for your industry organization, be an emcee in your company event or take lead in a new initiative, it’s all about taking that one step forward in the spirit of service.

To read more go to 5 Great Habits Successful Young Professionals Need to Develop. If you love to read more, subscribe to our blog!

Want to know how to protect your finances? You can check this out here:

 

 

There is a chance that aside from the fact that your home showcases how well you have done financially, you are also keeping a lot of your valuable things inside your home. This is normal since the home is usually people’s haven. This is where people can be most comfortable in. Inside your home, you feel safe and secure.

Times have changed however, and more and more homes are being targeted by different robbers all over the world. Mostly because these robbers think that they can get away with it. Sometimes, robbers even observe homes from a distance and it is through that, that they are able to formulate their plans to rob homes.

At this point, you may just want to know how you are going to protect your personal finances and your valuables. Here are just some of the things that you have to remember:

Make sure that your shrubs and other trees and plants are well groomed. This will allow your neighbors to see if there is anything suspicious going on inside your home. It will be harder for robbers to try to camouflage at different parts of the house.

You can act like as if you are inside your home. Do remember that if you would appear to be inside your house, burglars will not see your house as one of their primary targets. You can hire a house sitter, someone that you trust to take care of your house while you are away as well.

Give special attention to the locks of your doors. Even if you have hired a house sitter, there may be certain areas that you do not want the house sitter to enter. Making sure that you have a digital Yale lock brand can be very helpful in keeping your home safe. If you know that your locks need to be updated, you may also want to check out a reputable lock company. This site will give you all of the lock choices that you may need.

 

If you do not know which lock you need to purchase, you can check out good locks online as well as the other locks that you may find valuable inside your home. Remember that aside from locks and keeping your valuables kept at hard to find places; installing a CCTV camera may also be good for your home since this can keep your home safe.

This is very hard for people to understand this saying which is the title of my blog today. We tend to believe that whatever we get as part of salary or any other means is the only money that we earn and rest we do is just the spending but this is absolutely wrong. Read more to know how and ways that we all can follow in order to have self-control and save unnecessary spending on useless things. 

 

According to the scientific research it has been found that when it comes to saving we look for immediate profit and gain instead of long term waiting and maturity or say locking period. This phenomenon is called as hyperbolic discounting.

 

For example, if the fees for yearly subscription of a gym is 500 SGD but monthly it is 50 SGD then we would not see that we are saving 100 SGD yearly instead we opt for monthly subscription paying more because we do not know if we would be able to come the complete year.

 

The market mavericks are making use of this human tendency and packaging the products such a way that we fall prey to them. The package and deals are so enticing that we tend to ignore everything and opt for it no matter if we end up expiating at later point of time.

 

For example, this is quite widespread in reality business that during a specific festive season, the builders and property dealers will offer gifts ranging from car, refrigerator, AC on the purchase of the house within the given stipulated time frame but eventually if you calculate properly then you would notice that builder is recovering the gift price from the property being targeted to be sold to you.

 

So the first lesson is to calculate and wise enough to understand the tricks and trips of these marketing gimmicks and people in this business. Do not simply fall for them instead do your proper homework before opting for anything and pay special attention when going for expensive things like house, car etc.

 

Also, keep your calculation always ready about the liquid cash you have and how much is already placed in the long term savings so that you would have an idea before spending on anything. This will also give you a clear perspective about opting for only the urgently required items rather than paying obnoxiously on useless products. 

 

Also, always go for long term saving plan with maximum locking period because otherwise you will always get tempted to withdraw and splurge that money into something else.

Image result for cut your price

Do you know that there are different things that you can do so that you can actually sell better? There are some people who are naturally good at it while others would have to undergo training which may include undergoing ppt powerpoint presentation services so that they can start selling better.

 

Whenever people look at an item, they will have different thoughts and perception about it. Some will like it immediately but there are also some that would hate the items on first sight. If you would try to sell an item to someone who does not necessarily like the item, do you honestly think that you can make a sale?

 

Here are some of the things that you can do:

 

1. Do not be afraid to experiment from time to time.

 

The strategy that works well for other people may not work well for you. What you can do is to experiment about the different approaches that will make people want to hear more from you. When they find you and the item endearing, they will most likely purchase from you. The more sales you make, the better your financial situation is going to be.

 

2. Be aware of things that are related to the items that you are selling.

 

You should not be contented with the knowledge that was given to you about what you are selling. You have to do more research, you have to know more facts so that you can share details that other people never knew about what you are selling. The facts that you have figured out may be enough for them to purchase from you.

 

3. Remember that you have to repeat things sometimes.

 

The people that you are dealing with would have to digest a lot of information all at once. There is a possibility that they would forget the most important things but you are there to let them know that they should never forget. Make the effort to repeat things and they will be grateful about it. Just do not overdo it because it can be annoying.

 

4. Understand what causes people to not buy.

 

Aside from learning about the reasons why people purchase some items, get to know what people’s fears are too. This will allow you to target their fears so that these fears can be addressed. They will realize later on that there is nothing to be afraid of. You can learn more tips about selling from here:

 

 

Remember that you should not be needy when it comes to selling because people may disappoint you even more.