Monthly Archives: November 2011

Am I Smarter Than A Harvard Grad?

The Power of a Goal – Part Two

An Art of the Question Blog

How Can I Make More Money?

Harvard is an amazing school.  But even they don’t always get it.

There was a study done on students enrolled in the Harvard MBA program in 1979.  The results were published In What They Don’t Teach You in the Harvard Business School, by Mark McCormack. It was a pretty simple study. The students were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” When the answers were tallied, amazingly, only three percent of the graduates had written goals and plans. 13% said they had goals, but had not written them down.

An astounding 84% reported that they had no specific goals.

The study picked up again ten years later. Here is what they found.  The 13% who had goals were earning approximately twice as much as those with no goals.

And the three-percenters? They were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97%!

The power of a goal.

What about you? What is your goal? Is it so clear that you can draw it with a crayon?  How do you set such a goal? Well, for openers, it helps to be S.M.A.R.T. 

 S.M.A.R.T. goals are: Specific, Measurable, Aligned, Realistic, Time-bound

So how do we go about setting S.M.A.R.T. goals? 

First, we Plan. A goal without a plan is just a wish. Set aside time to brainstorm and plan.  It is critical that you know where you are going.  What is the goal? What are the steps to get there? What resources do you need? These are but a few of the questions that go into the planning phase.

I once heard a story about Einstein. He was traveling on a train, and as the conductor came through to collect tickets, he began search for his ticket. It wasn’t in his briefcase. It wasn’t in his luggage, nor his coat pocket. It was nowhere to be found.

The conductor, recognizing Einstein, said, “Don’t worry sir, I know who you are. I don’t need your ticket.” To which Einstein replied, “I too know who I am. What I don’t know is where I’m going!”

As Yogi Berra once said – if you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else!

Second, we Prepare. Preparation is the critical link between the planning and execution phase. It is at this stage that we gather the information, data, contacts or other information that we need. We organize our information, lay out our process, and assign milestones in our plan.  Write it down!  An unwritten goal is just a daydream.

Finally, we Proceed. It is execution time! Based on our planning and preparation, we move forward with action! Day by day, step by step, we work to accomplish the milestones that lead to the successful completion of our goal. Track your success!  Action without documentation is confusion,

Don’t quit. Understand from the very beginning, there will be tough days. You will be discouraged. You will be tired. You will be disillusioned. But understand this as well – there is deep magic in perseverance. Thomas Jefferson understood this. He said, “What this power is I cannot say; all I know is that it exists and it becomes available only when a man is in that state of mind in which he knows exactly what he wants and is fully determined not to quit until he finds it.”

Know this. Your goal, the success you are dreaming of is already out there, just waiting for you to catch up. This one step – setting a goal and sticking to your plan until you achieve it – changes everything.

For more information on goal setting, request the free SMART Goals™ worksheet, available through terrynewberry Seminars at terrydnewberry@bellsouth.net.

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What’s In It For Me?

What’s In It for Me?
An Art of the Question Blog

What am I thankful for?

 The ocean journey took 65 days. The ship, a 180-ton behemoth called the Mayflower, was cold and damp. Due to the ever-present threat of fire, meals had to be eaten cold. Fresh fruit and vegetables were in short supply, and most of those on board developed loose teeth, bleeding gums and liver spots due to scurvy. Seasickness, extreme cold, fierce wind, rough seas and storms were part of the experience that marked the crossing of the Atlantic.

When they finally made landfall, conditions were difficult. To survive, the Pilgrims robbed dwellings and even graves of the Native Americans, stealing valuables and corn. The first winter was devastating. Exceptionally cold weather and heavy snow and sleet made it difficult to construct shelter.  By December, most of the settlers had fallen ill, with violent coughing. In the worst of the sickness, only 6 or 7 were well enough to care for the others. By the following March, only 50 of the Colonists were still alive.

And that is when the miracle began. On March 16, 1621, a Native American brave walked into their shabby encampment. His name was Samoset. He greeted them in English with one word – Welcome.  He left the next day, returning with another Native American named Squanto. Squanto spoke English very well, having spent time in both England and Spain.

Squanto’s impact on the Pilgrims cannot be measured. It is very likely that without his intervention, they would not have survived.  He taught them to plant crops, including corn planted in mounds with fish, which would fertilize the corn as it decayed. He showed them how to tap maple trees for syrup. He pointed out which plants were poisonous, which were edible, which were good for healing.

Six months later, the story was very different in the Pilgrim world. There was plenty to eat, even enough to pack away for the coming winter. They had built homes, they were at peace with their Indian neighbors. There was much for which to be grateful.

The governor of the small Colony was named William Bradford. He declared a day of Thanksgiving, to be shared by Native Americans and the Pilgrims. It was held in mid-October, and 90 Indian braves showed up, led by their chief. The festivities, including games, marksmanship, and drum playing lasted 3 days.

During this Thanksgiving season, many of us are discouraged and anxious. Ironically, science teaches us that the very act of gratitude is a strong deterrent to anxiety and fearfulness!

Dr. Robert Emmons is a professor of psychology at the University of California Davis. He has done extensive research into the psychology of gratitude.  Dr. Emmons serves as the Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Positive Psychology. He has written several books on the science of gratitude, including  The Psychology of Ultimate Concerns  (Guilford Press),  The Psychology of Gratitude (Oxford University Press), Words of Gratitude (Templeton Foundation Press) and THANKS!: How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier (Houghton-Mifflin).

Dr. Emmons conducted a study project to learn more about thankfulness and its effect on human emotion and interaction. For the study, over 100 undergraduate students were randomly assigned to one of three groups.

The first group was to keep a gratitude journal in which to list five things they were grateful for during the week for 10 consecutive weeks. The second group also kept a journal for the same period. However, they listed five things that annoyed them. The third group simply listed five events that occurred. They didn’t indicate positive or negative.  Each participant completed a detailed questionnaire about their physical and mental health before, during and after the study period.

The findings were clear.  Focusing on positive thoughts and having a spirit of thankfulness was key in helping the study group in the areas of happiness and life balance. The findings are amazing.

Attitude: The gratitude group practiced daily self- guided exercises in intentional thankfulness. These individuals increased their level of focus, their energy level improved, and they became more determined to reach goals.  The other group, focused negative thoughts, showed no positive increases.

Optimism and Health: One of the findings was that the subjects who kept a gratitude journal felt more optimistic about their lives. Interestingly, they also improved their health focus, including exercising more. Conversely, the other group, which kept a journal about mostly about negative viewpoints did not show the positive results that the first group experienced.

The health aspects of gratitude were further borne out in a study done with adults suffering from neuromuscular disease.  In this study, Dr. Emmons had the adults participate in a gratitude intervention for 21-days. During the study, the subjects reported increased energy levels and more optimism. They felt closer to others, and even reported sleeping better at night.

Accomplishment: During the study, the gratitude group made significant progress on accomplishing goals they set for themselves in areas such as relationships, study and even health.  The other group did not make progress.

Service: The gratitude group showed a notable increase in helpfulness to others..

During this time when there seems to be so much to worry about with the economy, the war and political uncertainty, it is important that we maintain a balance in our lifeview. The act of Thanksgiving has significant benefits to us spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and even physically

What am I thankful for?


Can I Draw It With A Crayon?

The Power of a Goal – Part One

An Art of the Question Blog

What are my goals?

It’s not about what’s owed to me. This game gives you what you put into it. I plan to put my heart and soul into it.                                                                                                                                                                                               – – Barry Zito

The 7-year old listened as his teacher asked the class to draw a picture of what they wanted to do when they grew up. He didn’t hesitate. Ever since he was three, when he received a red plastic baseball bat, he had known what he wanted to be when he grew up. So, he picked up a crayon and drew a baseball pitcher. He scrawled the words “Make a million dollars” above it.

Barry Zito had a goal.

After college, Barry was selected by the Seattle Mariners and the Texas Rangers, but politely declined both teams, turning down not one – but two – chances to play in the big leagues. A year later, he signed with the Oakland Athletics – for a signing bonus of $1.59 million.

Barry Zito had achieved his goal.

 But that was just the beginning. Seven years later, he signed a new contract – for the highest amount ever paid to a pitcher at that time.

The power of a goal.

It is approaching that time of year when we take stock of all our accomplishments from the past, and look forward to what we want to do next. There are three basic approaches that most of us take. Some of us just keep doing what we are doing, without much thought or focus about the future. Some of us think about the future, but don’t spend time forming specific goals. And then there are the magic people, the ones that really take the future seriously. They crystallize their dreams into goals, write them down, and develop a plan to reach them. 

What about you? What is your goal? Is it so clear that you can draw it with a crayon?  How do you set such a goal. Well, for openers, it helps to be S.M.A.R.T.

Stay tuned….

For more information on goal setting, request the free SMART Goals™ worksheet, available through terrydnewberry Seminars at terrydnewberry@bellsouth.net.


Investing in Others

Investing in Others

An Art of the Question Blog

How am I investing in others?

Leadership is not about titles, positions, or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing others.      

                                                                                                                                                                             — John Maxwell

John has a passion. He wants you to be the very best you can possibly be.  That is the mark of a true leader.  A real leader wants others to grow into the best version of themselves. John is a master at this.

John Maxwell invests in others.  He does it by writing books (50+ and counting!).  He does it by speaking (to millions and millions).  He does it by radio, TV, the internet, DVD, CD…you get the picture.

How about you? How are you investing in others? Perhaps you haven’t yet written a book or been on TV.  Maybe you don’t have a blog or a website or even a business card. But you can invest. You can become involved in a mentoring relationship.

According to ancient Greek legend, a king named Odysseus went to war. He entrusted the care of his son to a close friend named Mentor. The word “mentor”, used to describe a wise and trusted counselor, thus became a part of our language.

Another interesting bit of trivia is related to the word “protégé”. This word comes from the an old French word which means “to protect.”

Mentoring is critical in the life of a leader. From King Arthur, whose mentor was Merlin the magician, to Timothy, who grew into a strong leader under the mentoring of the Apostle Paul, history is filled with story after story of mentors and protégés.  Former Surgeon General Dr. C. Everett Koop was mentored by a typographer!

There are two keys to every successful person. The first is that they have a mentor.  A mentor is someone who helps sort options and identifies opportunities. A mentor gives advice and perhaps most importantly – perspective.

The second key is to be a mentor.  Every one of us can mentor someone.  It doesn’t take a lot of money or even time. It basically means that you meet with them periodically and discuss what is going on in their business or family or life, and offer expertise, perspective and advice if asked.  I have the good fortune of having several mentors. I have the great fortune of having several friends that I also mentor.  And you want to know a secret?  I learn as much from those I am mentoring as I learn from those who mentor me!

There are several mentoring models. Find the one that works for you.

Traditional: In this model, there is a mentor and someone being mentored. Don’t have a mentor? Ask. You may be surprised to find that the person you most admire would be honored to work with you.

Peer – to – Peer: In this model, each participant is a co-mentor. They work together, each bringing their particular skill set to the process.  An example of this might be a sales expert in a Peer-to-Peer mentorship with an IT person. Each is in a position to help the other.

Group: In the Group Model, several people meet. One of the popular versions of this is the Group-of-Ten in which 10 people meet regularly to discuss current projects, issues, and provide insight and advice.

Pick a model, or try all three. The important thing to remember is that none of us are as smart as all of us. Investing in others is a great way to not only influence others, but we ourselves grow as a result.

Who would you like to have as your mentor?

Who are you currently mentoring? What can you do to begin a mentoring relationship within the next week?

For a free copy of Keys to Effective Mentoring, send an email to Terry at terrydnewberry@bellsouth.net.


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