Wat is de belangrijkste soft skill volgens ondernemers?

En 5 manieren om deze te cultiveren!

In het onlangs gepubliceerde Global Talent Trends van LinkedIn kwam naar voren dat ‘soft skills’ van essentieel belang zijn voor het groeien in je carrière. Wat is de belangrijkste soft skill? Creativiteit.

Waarom is uitgerekend creativiteit zo belangrijk? Eigenlijk is het niet heel gek. Creativiteit is de kunst om de wereld op een andere manier te bekijken, om ongewone patronen te herkennen, en om ‘losse’ zaken aan elkaar te verbinden. Vervolgens ben je veel beter in staat in om innovatieve oplossingen te bedenken, en deze aan te dragen als echte oplossingen op echte problemen.

Creativiteit is key in elke functie

Heb jij een échte leiderschapsfunctie in jouw organisatie? Dan zul je creatief met mensen, producten, en situaties om moeten kunnen gaan. Iedereen heeft op een andere manier leiding nodig, en aan jou om daar elke keer op een innovatieve manier mee om te gaan.

Zit je echter in sales? Dan weet je als geen ander dat elke prospect, elke klant, en elke relatie zich in een totaal unieke dagelijkse praktijk bevindt. Geen enkel bedrijf is hetzelfde, dus aan jou om creatief tot oplossingen te komen en dit zaadje op een onderscheidende manier in het brein van jouw gesprekspartner te planten.

Natuurlijk zijn leiders en verkopers niet de enige mensen in het bedrijfsleven waarbij creativiteit van belang is. Of je nou in finance, marketing, of de operatie zit: Altijd kom je wel een situatie tegen waar de standaard oplossingen niet werken. Aan jou om daar creatief mee om te gaan.

Branson, Ferriss, Spielberg, en Jobs zeggen het allemaal: Creativiteit op werk is essentieel.

Hoe kun jij er vervolgens voor zorgen dat jij jouw creatieve capaciteiten vergroot? Allereerst begint het natuurlijk bij de overtuiging dat jij daadwerkelijk creatief bent. Als je begint met het idee dat creativiteit niks voor jou is, wordt het complex.

Als je je deze overtuiging (“Ik ben creatief!”) eigen hebt gemaakt, zijn er nog 5 dingen die je kunt doen om de belangrijkste soft skill bij jezelf te cultiveren:

1. Wees niet bang om risico’s te nemen

Wanneer je nieuwe dingen probeert, zoals creatieve oplossingen, ideeën of initiatieven, is er natuurlijk altijd de kans dat het volledig de plank mis zal slaan. Laat dit je vooral niet ontmoedigen! Als je jezelf de vrijheid geeft om nieuwe ideeën zonder angst aan te dragen, zou je zomaar op iets kunnen komen waar niemand ooit eerder aan heeft gedacht.

2. Houd tijd vrij om je creatief te denken

Eerder hebben we al geschreven over het dagdromen met intentie en een doel. En het lijkt tegenstrijdig. Echter, mensen die vaker dagdromen scoren hoger op creatieve en intellectuele tests. Daarnaast werkt het ook mee dat je tijd vrij maakt in je agenda, om zo ruimte vrij te maken in je hoofd. Als jouw brein relaxter is, zal creativiteit ook eerder komen.

3. Wees open-minded

Onbekrompen kijken en luisteren naar nieuwe ideeën. Dankzij de associatieve capaciteiten van het brein kan creativiteit van anderen ook jouw creativiteit vergroten. Heb jij een fixed mindset? Dat is killing voor creativiteit.

Zoals Richard Branson het ooit zei: “The most thought-provoking, game-changing people are never ‘normal’.”

4. Houdt bewust je aandacht erbij

Ongeveer 7% van de tijd zijn we écht bewust. De overige 93% staan we op de automatische piloot en zijn we dus onbewust. Wanneer je zo af en toe bewust kijkt naar alle informatie en gegevens, kun je jezelf trainen nieuwe dingen eruit te pikken. Kijk met oprechte nieuwsgierigheid naar deze, verbindt de zaken en ideeën, en wie weet met welke creatieve oplossing je zult komen.

Steve Jobs: “Creativity is connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they don’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after awhile.”

5. Stel grote vragen

Stel de vragen die anderen niet snel (durven te) stellen. Dat daagt de conventionele manier van denken en handelen uit. Zo kom je tot oplossingen die je eerder niet voor mogelijk had gehouden. Daag de status quo uit, en neem vooral geen genoegen met ‘Zo hebben we het altijd gedaan!”

Tom Bilyeu omschrijft het als volgt: “Whatever problem you’re facing, ask yourself a simple question: All politeness and political correctness aside – with total disregard for what is socially acceptable or what you WANT to be true – what would it actually take to solve your problem?”

Wat is de belangrijkste soft skill, volgens jou? En hoe ga jij ervoor zorgen dat jouw creativiteit vergroot wordt? En dat van jouw team of afdeling? Jouw gehele organisatie? Laten we daar samen eens naar kijken. Neem contact op!

Why do we like what we like?

The four-letter code for popularity

How did one man understand what so many different consumers wanted? In what manner did he use psychology to sell his ideas and designs? What can you do, to sell anything to anyone?

Raymond Loewy, the father of industrial design, had a theory. He was the all-star 20th-century designer of the Coca-Cola fountain and Lucky Strike pack. Furthermore, he designed the modern sports car, locomotive, Greyhound bus and tractor. Additionally, he designed the interior of the first NASA spaceship and the egg-shaped pencil sharpener. Ergo: What is popular, and when? And how you can sell anything to anyone?

Watch his TEDx talk here.

#subconscious #brain #familiarity #recognition #sales #salesdevelopment #design

How to Remember 90% of What You Learn

Personal Development by Studying and Teaching

How do you learn? Most likely, you learn by taking in new information and then repeating it so often, that it becomes ‘second nature’. Remember the first time you were driving a car? A lot of information to take in. After a while, you did it so many times, your subconscious brain took over and said ‘We got this”. Personal development works this way, too.

There is a hack for this, which allows you to retain the ‘new’ information even quicker. Firstly, it will allow you to make more connections in the brain, quicker than before. Secondly, it’ll ensure that those connections in the brain apply to existing knowledge too.

It’s called the 50/50 rule, and it will help you retain that information even quicker.

How does it work? According to Thomas Oppong, it’s this: “A better way to learn, process, retain and remember information is to learn half the time, and share half the time.”

So if you’re reading a book, instead of completing it in one take, do something different. Aim to read a chapter, and then recall, share, or write down the key ideas. What have you actually learned from it? Write it down, tell a friend, or tell a colleague. It’s a way to further your own personal and professional development, and that of others.

“The mind is like a muscle. The more it’s exercised, the better it gets and the stronger it becomes. “Use it or lose it” very much applies to the mind.”

When we train groups or individuals, this is why we encourage taking as many notes as you can. The brain activates when it’s writing down, because it helps memorizing and putting into action.

#subconscious #nerdsofhumandevelopment #visionforward #personaldevelopment #professionaldevelopment #success #learning

Stop tracking and start inspiring

Improving results by improving leadership

“Are your performance evaluations improving your organizational culture? Do you think evaluation systems really engage people, make them feel heard and help them to grow? Because an overwhelming number of companies review their people infrequently, and in a way that is not engaging or effective. Yet, engaging employees is crucial. Especially with today’s multi-generational, technology driven and app savvy workforce.” writes Stuart Levine. Are you improving your results by improving your leadership?

But what are you doing to engage your employees? To inspire them? How are you supporting their professional growth? What effects does that have on the experience of the customer? Above all, if you don’t take care of your employees, they won’t take care of your customers.

Do you need help in setting goals for yourself and company? Or do you want to get out of the subconscious patterns that are keeping you where you currently are? Let’s get in touch. Because we know that you can be a great leader. One who can inspire instead of track and punish.

#success #leadership #nerdsofhumandevelopment #subconscious #visionforward

What do you know?

What subconscious patterns are standing in the way of your success?

Epictetus said it well, hundreds of years ago. The things you think you know are 100% true, may not be as true as you think they are. Everybody has their own set of beliefs and subconscious patterns, and thus perceive those to construct reality. But who knows if that is really the best way to handle a specific situation?

Your personal growth and development depend mostly on one thing: You. And that means that you have to be able to let go of the things, beliefs, and patterns that were once working for you – but are no longer. Figure out why you’re not successful, and then dig deeper. Much deeper than you feel comfortable with.

If you don’t allow yourself to consciously step out of your comfort zone, then what are your developing yourself for?

#success #subconscious #nerdsofhumandevelopment #visionforward #stoics

How to Master Intentional Dreaming for a Satisfying Life

The best methodology to get your brain and intentions powerfully aligned

What is it that you really want? What do you want to accomplish? In your personal life or in your professional life? What goals do you have? How do you set goals? Does that even work? How does your brain work with goals?

David Paul Kirkpatrick writes about the brain, and how it helps you to achieve your goals. At Vision Forward, this is what we combine with the essential skills you need to reach your goals. Thus, the combination of skills and effective behavior, influencing your surroundings, and knowing how the subconscious works, is what sets the successful apart from the unsuccessful.

How do you set goals? One way to get ahead in this is to use intentional dreaming.

Here are the 7 steps that Kirkpatrick describes.

  1. Acknowledge that imagination has power
  2. Bring yourself into ‘body calm’
  3. Construct the aspiration in your consciousness and imagine it moving with you into your unconscious and subconscious reserves
  4. Go to sleep
  5. Repeat every night before sleeping
  6. When compelled by an intuitive affection, act upon it
  7. Let it go

Kirkpatrick goes into detail, which we suggest you do too. Read about it here.

#subconscious #success #goals #nerdsofhumandevelopment

A Essential Lesson On Leadership

Learning from ancient emperors to become a better leader

Marcus Aurelius held the most powerful position in the world. The adage that power in absolute absolutely corrupts has been repeated throughout history for a reason. It unfortunately tends to be true. But as the famous historian Edward Gibbon wrote, under Marcus, the last of the ‘Five Good Emperors,’ “the Roman Empire was governed by absolute power, under the guidance of wisdom and virtue.” Do you want to become a better leader?

The Daily Stoic writes about the 12 lessons on leadership from Marcus Aurelius. For the entire article, click here. In this post, we focus on 1 essential trait of leadership:

EXPECT TO CHANGE YOUR OPINIONS

93% of the time, we are ‘unconscious’. Which means that we let our auto-pilot take over. It means that we tend to get stuck in our subconscious patterns. When we are conscious, it takes real effort and sweat. Because that’s just how our brains work.

In a meritocracy, which is a culture that works in favor of the best ideas, you sometimes have to change your opinions or ideas about what works best. But if you’re a capable leader, you’ll do that. However, it comes at a cost. Because you’ll have to put your own ego aside.

Are you ready to become a better leader?

“Remember, if there is one core teaching at the heart of this philosophy, it’s that we’re not as smart and as wise as we’d like to think we are. If we ever do want to become wise, it comes from the questioning and from humility—not, as many would like to think, from certainty, mistrust, and arrogance.”

#success #leadership #stoicism #subconscious #nerdsofhumandevelopment

5 Resolutions for Sales Leaders

Make the next 12 months successful

If you’re in sales, you have got a lot of things going on. Following up on leads, calling prospects, managing customer experience. Depending on the size of your organization, you’re also setting meetings, creating proposals, and checking up on delivery. We all know it’s a lot. So what should sales leaders focus on?

Imagine you manage a group of sales executives. You’ve got all of the above ánd checking up on your people to make sure they’re on target. Meetings with the people ‘above’ you, meetings with the people ‘below’ you, and meetings with all other stakeholders.

Because you’re all so busy with the day to day operational side of the job, it’s easy to get stuck in that. You’ll keep on managing dissatisfiers, and you’re focus won’t be providing extra value or differentiating from your competitors.

Aside from the operational dealings, which have to happen, what should you focus on? It doesn’t matter if you’re an account manager, sales executive, or sales manager. We mention 5 resolutions that will enable any forward-thinking sales leader to hit target easier than before.

Have strategic conversations with your clients. Not just tactical conversations.

The world is changing daily. Technological innovations, new legislature, or key economic events. Mike Houghton says: “Understanding your customer’s mindset can help you have a strategic conversation about or guide the conversation towards one focused on business outcomes. In fact, it’s useful to think of yourself as a consultant rather than a salesperson. When you start to think of it [your conversations with the customer] that way, talking about type, brand, feeds and speeds will often be irrelevant.”

Spend time daily developing your skills and mindset.

If you’re not on top of your game, you will lose to one (or several) of your competitors. As a result, it is important that you spend time daily to develop yourself. For instance: Develop your skills. Develop your mindset. Develop your knowledge.
If you’re a manager, enable your sales people to develop themselves. Provide training, books, and courses.

Focus on what you do best, not what everybody else is doing.

At Vision Forward, we know what we do best. We enable people and companies to be highly successful. That means we’re narrowing our focus to ensure that our resources are well spent on providing that value to our people, our clients, and their clients.

Help your customer act, not just react. Think proactively.

Mike Houghton states: “Addressing your customer’s desired business outcomes – whether those include reducing costs, increasing efficiency, or improving safety – means that a 30,000-foot approach to their environment.” That’s your only job as a sales person or consultant. So make sure that you enable your clients to reach their goals faster.

Look to the future – not the past.

If your focus on the things that happened in the past, you won’t be able to step forward into the future. It sounds cliché, but that is because it’s true. When you do the things you’ve always done in the past, you will not get different results in the future. It’s that simple.
That does mean, however, stepping out of your subconscious patterns.
Look out for the innovations that might change your business, or the businesses of your clients, and anticipate. Where are the opportunities? Where do possible risks lie? If you’re providing value to your clients based on what you know and they don’t, you’re one up.

#success #sales #nerdsofhumandevelopment #salestraining #deveopment #subconscious

Click here for the Mike Houghton article on Forbes.