Ships of Harmony

http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Michelle_W_Moore/2358063

Pending publishing from EzineArticles.com

As a communications major, I am also listening to what people do not say via their non-verbal cues. Body language, special proximity, facial expressions, simple gestures and even a touch can give a deeper meaning into real truths of a conversation. My thoughts are loud through my wrinkled forehead, clinched teeth or half curled top lip. For example, I do not have a default or poker face. Let us not forget the eyes like laser beams that burn every hidden agenda. I realized so often I am saying more than my mouth is talking and my silence is not as sweet as it should be without words. Relationships can be strained or even awkward at times with multilingual conversations. I stretched the word multilingual here because your mouth could be saying one thing and your body is speaking in an entirely different language.

I was recently introduced to another category of languages that I found to be universal and insightful. This category is called Love languages. The five love languages, as presented by Gary Chapman in The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate (1995) expounds upon five ways to give and receive emotional love. They are: receiving gifts, physical touch, acts of service, words of affirmation and quality time. Even though this book refers to couples, on a greater level it spoke to me about relationships. Ships as I call them, take the form of friendships, companionship as well as partnerships, which extend into business. Even though it speaks in terms of the word love, I heard how we want to be treated and how we treat others; how I am valued and how I value others. As leaders, founders and entrepreneurs, we have a responsibility to assure our team that they are valued and add value. Here is a snapshot of the languages from Focus on the Family:

Receiving gifts- value through a visual expression or token that says you are thinking of me

Physical touch-value through physical contact and proximity

Acts of service- value through doing things for me

Words of affirmation-value through words; compliments and showing appreciation

Quality time-value through showing interest and giving your undivided attention

My primary love language is acts of service. When someone takes a task off my list, I feel so appreciated. I don’t need to be touched, talked to or told I’m doing a great job. I recall my staff when I was a financial center manager. They were a remarkable group of loyal employees. I saw their primary love language and how it affected their performance and our ships. The head teller was acts of service. I recall one holiday season she had Gaither tickets and we were not able to get coverage. I ran the vault and a teller window so that she could attend. The ATM teller liked receiving gifts. A cupcake on a busy Friday, which was every Friday, made her day in the midst of long endless lines. The customer service representative was words of affirmation and physical touch. Words of praise made her face shine, not to mention that it got brighter if I touched her shoulder at the same time. The part-time teller was quality time. She liked my undivided attention at times because she was only there a few hours a day. Knowing how people feel valued or loved ranks with knowing their strengths and weaknesses. How this knowledge translates into leadership is quite rewarding for everyone involved.

Acts of kindness extend beyond bonuses and promotions. Sometimes the money dries up and people stay until they retire. Knowing love languages and applying that knowledge in the workplace can increase moral, production and harmony among your staff. I encourage you to take the test at www.5lovelanguages.com and experience uncharted waters of success on your ships.

Resources:

http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/communication-and-conflict/learn-to-speak-your-spouses-love-language/understanding-the-five-love-languages

Do You See What I See-Perception Management

How people think, feel and act are not always based upon truth, but instead upon what they perceive (observe, identify, or distinguish) as being their reality. This past election triggered emotional uproars from the American people. President elect Trump took a straight-with-no-chaser approach to politics as he does business. He was totally candid and raw; sometimes even vulgar. This is the person we have always known him to be and he did not change faces for the election. But once he actually won, it appeared that he toned down. He shouted from the mountain top that he was going to build a wall and send the bill to the other side. We watched emotions stir. Or he was pulling the plug on Obamacare. Think of the millions who would be without coverage again. Emotions stirred over and over again as the laundry list ran down the floor. But now he’s president elect and the wall is for illegal immigrants, illegal being the operative word here. Some components of Obamacare might be kept. Things have just toned down. So what is the perception now and what do you see?

The United States Department of Defense defines perception management as:

Actions to convey and/or deny selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence their emotions, motives, and objective reasoning as well as to intelligence systems and leaders at all to influence official estimates, ultimately resulting in foreign behaviors and official actions favorable to the originator’s objectives. In various ways, perception management combines truth projection, operations security, cover and deception, and psychological operations.

In his article, The Victory of ‘Perception Management’, Robert Parry states, “…what the insiders called “perception management” began in earnest with the Reagan administration in the 1980s but it would come to be the accepted practice of all subsequent administrations, including the present one of President Barack Obama.” Where propaganda trumps ideals, “The point would be not to honestly inform the American people about events around the world but to manage their perceptions by ramping up fear in some cases and defusing outrage in others depending on the U.S. government’s needs.” (Parry) Wow! Do we get caught up in the hype? Yes indeed!

Now let’s draw a line from government to corporations and from corporations to businesses. Billionaire, Donald Trump, is a case study for entrepreneurship. He has used perception management to now be the most influential man in America. How can you position yourself as an entrepreneur to be the most influential person in your business arena? In his book, It’s a Jungle in There, Steven Schussler believes, “Sometimes it is important to use perception management to create the appropriate image or belief you want a person or group of people to have about you and/or your creations.” (2010, pg. 173)

What do you want you’re the marketplace to perceive you to be? Schussler says, “Perception management is about getting people to see you and what you do in a positive light…negative impressions [create] unwanted consequences.” For Trump, did it really matter? There were protests but that too has passed. But for the maturing entrepreneur, Schussler is correct. It’s all about mind-sets. As the artist, you get to paint the picture you want them to see; you get to create the sculpture right before their eyes; and you get to write the script of your success story. You get them to see what you want them to see.

 

Parry, R. (n.d.). The Victory of ‘Perception Management’. Retrieved December 07, 2016, from https://consortiumnews.com/2016/04/13/the-victory-of-perception-management-2/

Perception management. (n.d.). Retrieved December 07, 2016, from http://psychology.wikia.com/wiki/Perception_management

Schussler, Steven. (2010) It’s A Jungle In There. New York: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc.

 

 

I Want to Make You Smile

I was recently introduced to another category of languages that I found to be universal and insightful. This category is called Love languages. The five love languages, as presented by Gary Chapman in The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate (1995) expounds upon five ways to give and receive emotional love. They are: receiving gifts, physical touch, acts of service, words of affirmation and quality time. Even though this book refers to couples, on a greater level it spoke to me about relationships. Relationships take the form of friendships, companionship as well as partnerships, which extend into business. While it speaks in terms of the word love, I heard “the golden rule”, how we want to be treated and how we treat others; how I am valued and how I value others. As leaders, founders and entrepreneurs, we have a responsibility to assure our team that they are valued and add value. As Steven Schussler says in his book It’s A Jungle In There, “Make People Feel Special.” He suggests that we think of a time when we were remembered, recognized, or celebrated; capture that emotion and say you didn’t like. Of course you did. Just thinking about an instance right now makes you smile.

Understanding love languages help make people smile. Here is a snapshot of the languages from Focus on the Family:

  • Receiving gifts- value through a visual expression or token that says you are thinking of me
  • Physical touch-value through physical contact and proximity
  • Acts of service- value through doing things for me
  • Words of affirmation-value through words; compliments and showing appreciation
  • Quality time-value through showing interest and giving your undivided attention

My primary love language is acts of service. When someone takes a task off my list, I feel so appreciated. I don’t need to be touched, to talk or for anyone tell me what a great job I am doing. I recall my staff when I was a financial center manager. I saw their primary love language and how it affected their performance and our ships. The head teller was acts of service. I recall one holiday season she had Gaither tickets and we were not able to get coverage. I ran the vault and a teller window so that she could attend. The ATM teller liked receiving gifts. A cupcake on a busy Friday, which was every Friday, made her day in the midst of longs endless lines. The customer service representative was words of affirmation and physical touch. Words of praise made her face shine, not to mention that it got brighter if I touched her shoulder at the same time. And the part-time teller was quality time. She liked my undivided attention at times because she was only there a few hours a day. All I knew is that I had a remarkable group of loyal employees. Knowing how people feel valued or loved ranks with knowing their strengths and weaknesses. How this knowledge translates into leadership is quite rewarding for everyone involved.

Acts of kindness extend beyond bonuses and promotions. Sometimes the money dries up and people stay until they retire. Knowing love languages and applying that knowledge in the workplace can increase moral, production and harmony among your staff. I encourage you to take the test at www.5lovelanguages.com and experience uncharted waters of success in your ships.

Resources:

http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/communication-and-conflict/learn-to-speak-your-spouses-love-language/understanding-the-five-love-languages

http://www.5lovelanguages.com/

You only fail if you quit

There is something about time that makes you wiser and stronger if you will allow it to transform you. I don’t mean change, but truly transform. I know there are some mornings I go through two suits, three blouses and four pairs of shoes until I get the fit and feel for that day, which happens to be the first suit, second blouse and third pair of shoes. So change is interchangeable depending on your mood, perspective or your preference. But transformation comes with a type of metamorphosis where you’ll never be the same; that caterpillar to butterfly kind of thing; a total unrecognizable chain reaction that literally causes you to take flight. And the beauty of it all is that you are equipped with everything necessary to make it happen. That which stands in between the transformation is time and season. If the caterpillar’s life-changing process is interrupted, it dies. Failure is interruption that could cause your life-changing process (dreams) to die. Getting knocked off your twig by nature (failed attempts) can cripple and crush you transformation. But you have to set your eyes on Mexico; you must take flight or death is inevitable. The transformation is necessary for the journey to a warmer climate. If you do not transform, you die from the cold (giving up). You only fail if you quit.

In his book It’s A Jungle In There, Steven Schussler gives three things to learn from failure to graduate to success. One, failure isn’t permanent. You are working with an EXPO marker and not a SHARPIE. “Failure should act as a stimulus, not paralysis.” (2010, pg. 141) An entrepreneur should have the capacity to get back up again. Two, failure should bring humility. “You need to be humbled by your mistakes, not crippled by them.” (pg. 142) Check your ego and how highly you think of yourself. Humility gives you a window seat to the truth. Your idea wasn’t as great as you thought it was or you aren’t as invincible as you thought you were. Thirdly, failure translates into appreciating success-“…how precious it is to achieve and how difficult it is to maintain.” (pg. 142) Each success is a milestone to be celebrated and treasured. Failures transform you, successes transforms others. Your failures forerun a path for others to learn from and avoid.

We are far greater than the butterfly dangling from that twig with hopes of continued life. Life continues when you recover and keep it moving. Time has shown me those things that I counted as failures like my marriage ending in divorce, loss of that significant job where I had influence and power, or not spending enough quality time with my daughter because I am tired and she thinks I work too much were merely reminders that the life-changing process is just that, a process. And as I move towards becoming an entrepreneur, I’ll keep my eyes on Mexico and never quit …

Resources:

Schussler, Steven. (2010) It’s A Jungle In There. New York: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc.