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Mind Maps September 28, 2007

Posted by Coolguy in Lifehacks.
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A mind map is a diagram used to represent items linked to and arranged radially around a central key word or idea. It is used to generate, visualize, structure and classify ideas, and as an aid in study.This is a very useful in brainstorming and for prepreration of exams like PRINCE2 etc.

List of mind-mapping softwares is here. Mindomo and Bubbl.us are two online software that are popular at the moment.

How to motivate yourself? September 27, 2007

Posted by Coolguy in Lifehacks.
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At times it could be difficult to force yourself todo a task (like exercise) daily. Here is what Jerry Sienfield uses to motivaet himself to write comedy, daily.

Get a big wall calendar that has a whole year on one page and hang it on a prominent wall. The next step is to get a big red magic marker.

For each day that you do the task, you put a big red X over that day. After a few days you’ll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You’ll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job next is to not break the chain.

Don’t break the chain.

Get Your Boss’s Job September 27, 2007

Posted by Coolguy in IT Career, Lifehacks.
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If the next rung on your corporate ladder belongs to your boss, you’re probably not going to get promoted until your boss does, and Wired’s How To Wiki details how to secure this kind of promotion.

In a nutshell, it’s a two-step process:

1) Learn your boss’s job, and

2) Train your replacement.

If you give your boss the opportunity to look good by helping him/her do a better job, your boss is more likely to get a promotion, which frees up your prospective job. If you’ve already been grooming a replacement, who better to slip into your boss’s position than you?

Body language for interviews September 13, 2005

Posted by Coolguy in Lifehacks, Personality.
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Research has shown that tone of voice and body language accounts for 65 per cent of what’s communicated, and words account for 35 per cent of the message that’s communicated. Body language can give away a lot of our feelings, regardless of whether we keep our mouths shut or not. And without an awareness of our actions, nervousness, dishonesty, boredom and other negative attributes can become dead give-aways.

Here are some tips to improve your chances of getting that job. Here are some interview questions to get you prepared.

  • Before taking a seat, be mindful of what you’ll be staring at. If you have a choice, avoid staring at a bright window
  • If you don’t apparently have a choice, don’t be afraid to ask. Ensure that you have room to move and reposition yourself if you become stiff or restless
  • To begin with, you need to set yourself up in a confident and comfortable position to help avoid negative body language habits
  • Make sure you are comfortably seated in an upright position ensuring that no particular part of your body is under strain (e.g. your neck).
  • Keep your hands rested in your lap, your head raised showing an expression of interest, and relax your shoulders without slumping into the seat.
  • Fidgeting shows boredom and restlessness
  • Crossing arms indicates an unwillingness to listen
  • Tapping your foot is distracting and a sure sign of boredom
  • Doodling on paper shows you’re not paying attention
  • Touching your face or playing with your hair can be a sign that you’re hiding something
  • Looking away or hesitating before or while speaking indicates that you’re unsure of what you’re saying
  • A fixed, unfocused stare shows your attention is elsewhere
  • Speak clearly in a controlled range of tones, avoiding a monotone
  • Always pause before speaking. This avoids instinctively reacting and saying the wrong things
  • Speak slightly slower than normal, but don’t overdo it
  • Vary your tone and dynamics, but try not to speak too loudly or too softly
  • Don’t mumble or gabble on excitedly
  • Keep your hands away from your mouth as you speak
  • Watch your pitch. High-pitched voices are tough on the ears, and avoid a ‘sing-song’ tone
  • Let your voice show your enthusiasm and keenness

Be aware of the how your gestures portray a positive or negative image.

Positive body language

  • Responsive/eager: Leaning forward, open arms, nodding
  • Listening: Head tilted, constant eye contact, nodding and verbal acknowledgement
  • Attentive: Smiling
  • A smile is the most positive signal you can give. It reaffirms your enthusiasm and good nature, but be careful of over-grinning stupidly.
  • Maintain regular, attentive eye contact but remember to avert your gaze from time to time to avoid staring.
  • Relax! Give off calm signals and don’t rush through the interview. Be mindful of time, but let the interviewer dictate the pace of the interview.
  • Mirror the interviewer’s techniques. If they laugh, laugh with them, if they lean forward to impress a point, respond by leaning forward to show your attention.
  • Do not hurry any movement. If you’re challenged with a difficult question, remind yourself about negative body language habits before answering the question.
  • Try to maintain an alert position. Sit up straight and adjust your position slightly if you get uncomfortable, but don’t fidget.
  • Always try to adopt an open, honest and confident attitude. This is the starting point of managing subconscious body language.

Negative body language

  • Bored: Slumped posture, foot tapping, doodling
  • Rejection: Arms folded, head down, subconscious frowning
  • Aggression: Leaning too far forward, finger pointing, grinding teeth
  • Lying: Touching face, hands over mouth, eyes averted, shifting uncomfortably in your seat, glancing

Problem Solving August 4, 2005

Posted by Coolguy in Lifehacks.
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The simple keys to effective problem solving are:

  • Anticipation of the problem.
  • Recognition that it is a problem. If it is a recurring problem ask why is this happening again?
  • Acceptance that it won’t solve itself.
  • Careful evaluation of the causes, circumstances or attitudes that led up to it.
  • Determining your real intent.
  • Determining appropriate actions to take.
  • Determining who will be touched by the solution or actions.
  • Deciding how you will get buy-in to your solution/actions from others.
  • Anticipating potential resistance from – people, circumstances or resources.
  • Evaluating the consequences or ripple effect of your decision/action.
  • Start, decide, do something.
  • Take full responsibility for the outcomes of your actions/decisions.
  • Re-evaluate the outcomes at pre-determined benchmarks.
  • Be willing to abandon your solution if it is obviously not working
  • Keep your ego out of the decision process