Is Your Personal Image Up to Par?

Because you can never retract that infamous first impression, perhaps it’s time for you to consider how to make a great one.

Is there a better time of year to assess your image or is there only now? There are numerous, perhaps even hundreds of people in your world who have a perfectly formed concept (in the privacy of their minds) of who you are without even speaking to you. "Who cares?" you might say. "If I don’t know them, why do I care what their opinion is of me?" You may be surprised at the many ways a bad image can come back to bite you. It takes less than seven seconds to create a first impression, a difficult image to change. Perhaps you are a meager staff person today, yet will be running the company in a few short years. Be aware of the image you project on your way up the ladder. And we all know of ‘C’ level leaders behaving badly—CEO’s, COO’s, CFO’s. It’s never too late to upgrade your personal image.

What composes your image? Not merely losing that ten pounds or the shape of your belly. It is your essence - everything from the way you speak to office assistants, to the way you walk, your eye contact, and of course your physical appearance. It’s also how you feel about yourself and those around you. This is all weaved into the way you present yourself to the world, and the way those in your world accept or reject you. Physical appearance: I know that a client is taking more responsibility for themselves and their image when he or she comes to a coaching session excited about having cleaned out their closet and saying "It was easy." Clothing that they bought even a few months ago no longer represents who they are today. And for those "What was I thinking?" items, better to have them out of sight now.

In Dress to Express, Tracy McWilliams puts it this way: "The image we create for ourselves directs what is possible for us. The key to looking great in clothes is understanding that you are the best judge of how you want to look. Connecting your outer image to your inner depth is the first step. If you can dress to express your own personal image, your self-confidence will shine through. You can take yourself further along the path to being the person you aspire to be."

Confidence Level
How you feel about yourself: You simply cannot hide a lack of confidence. You can hide it temporarily, as in ‘fake it until you make it,’ but unless you create a solid confidence foundation on which to stand you’ll be lost in the crowd. There are plenty of more confident folks to take your place in any arena.

What makes a person more confident? Taking time to asses your strong points. Focusing solely upon your week points allows little room for growth. In what areas do you excel today? How can you build upon these? How can you use the same talents, traits or magic formula to improve in other areas?

Body Language
How you feel about those around you: 93% of your communication is reflected through body language in the following ways:

  • Sub verbal (38%)tone of voice, speed, softness or loudness, anger, excitement, sincerity, enthusiasm or lack thereof

  • Body Language (55%)your stance, how you walk into the room, where your eyes are, placement of your hands and feet, your smile or frown. If you do not agree with, approve of, like or feel comfortable with the people you are with, it shows. Be very aware of what you subconsciously (albeit boldly) emanate.

This is a week to take inventory for upgrading your personal image. Be honest with yourself; ask for feedback from those you trust, or hire an image consultant. Because first impressions cannot be taken back, eliminate what no longer works for you. You’ll feel lighter, more free, fun and productive. Even slight changes to a bad image can bring dramatic results. Go out and shine this week. Enjoy your discoveries!

By Ann Golden Eglé
Image by Stock Source
Ann Golden Eglé is a Master Certified Coach and President of GV&A Success Coaching working with top level executives, entertainers and sports figures. Ann has a ten year track record of 100% thrilled business and executive coaching clients and 30 years experience in working with highly successful, top rated individuals. Ann holds a BS-Business Administration from the University of Nebraska, Certified Professional Co-Active Coach certificate from the Coaches Training Institute and numerous certificates to practice from the International Coach Federation. Sign up for her free e-zine Success Thought of the Week @

Time Management Skills: Tips and Techniques


Have you ever taken a look around at your workplace? If you were an observant person, you would have probably noticed how certain people complete their task with great ease before the stipulated time while some struggle laboriously with the same. You may have thought it probably has to do with the particular abilities of a person. Yes, it does hint at a person’s capability but it does not mean others do not have skills. The thing missing out in case of others who fail to perform well is the knowledge about time management skills.

Time management is important for those who wish to have a balanced professional and personal life. Having the knowledge of time management skills is all about being more productive at work while keeping stress at bay. Slogging for long hours at work does not always mean he/she is really a hardworking employee. An employer would then need to check if the particular person is unable to manage his/her time well enough to complete the task within the given hours. If you are often caught in this trap of being unable to manage your tasks well no matter how hard you try, read all about some tips and techniques about time management skills.

Time Management Skills: Techniques and Tips
Get your priorities right: Think about the set tasks for the day. You would then need to know how much time should be allotted to a particular task. Focus your energy on the important tasks that are completely significant to you. Is there a particular time of the day when you feel most productive? If your thinking powers are particularly sharp in the morning hours, try to finish your important tasks during that period. You can use the rest of time to finish the seemingly smaller tasks later.

Set clear goals for yourself and the team:
Setting goals for the week or even a day would help you in managing the time more effectively. Ensure the distribution of work is also done effectively. Decide the target you wish to achieve and manage your team well to get the desired results. Make short-term goals so that you can achieve your targets with ease. This is also indicative of your personal life.

Maintain a planner/diary:
Having a diary with all your activities for the day may seem a little cumbersome to you but you must maintain a diary to know the way you plan your day. Make a to-do list to organize things. Mark all the important tasks for the day. Include some time for your personal self as well.

Keep some extra time on hand:
Time management is all about dividing your work schedule in your planner but there would be certain hitches along the way. Sudden meetings or additional time spent on a particular project may require you to change your schedule. You must be aware of these situations and add more time to a particular task in advance to have some extra time on hand. In this manner, even if there were any issues that take up some more time, you would still be left with a comfortable amount of time for other tasks!

Learn to say no!
Well, when you are delegating your tasks and if you really can’t fit things in the schedule, learn to say no when required. There is a major difference between realistic goals and the completely impractical ones. Find out another alternative in that case. Every problem has its solution and you are not a one-man show, so learn to refuse when required.

Avoid procrastination of tasks:
Procrastinators end up working more than required and often end up feeling stressed about work. Avoiding work so that you can do it later is not a wise idea. Know the reasons why you are avoiding a particular task. It would be a wiser idea to finish the particular task beforehand rather than keep it piled for the month end.

Have focus and a vision:
Know about your goals and maintain your focus on the important tasks. Many times people often waste precious time on tasks, which are not really important to a particular project. A clear focus would help you to attain your objective. A vision would give you the right direction for the same.

Always keep time for yourself:
To be energized for work would require you to plan for some things, which you really enjoy apart from the work schedule. Going for a dance class or exercising at the gym would give you a chance to feel geared up about your work as well. Explore a new place at the weekend. Plan some time for yourself in between meetings; this is absolutely necessary if you are aiming to finish all the tasks on time!

It is therefore very necessary for one to be aware of time management skills and feel more organized at work. These tips and techniques are bound to help you manage your work in the most effective manner!

By Kashmira Lad

Developmental Delegation: Kindling The Inner Spirit of Your Team

When you delegate jobs in order to develop people, you build on the greatest resource you have. Here are the 6 steps to doing it right.

If you manage others, one of your most important roles will be to develop the resources that you have under you and that includes the people themselves. Here is a 6-step guide to how to develop people through delegation.

1. Kindle The Inner Spirit.
The first step in developing others is the belief that everyone in the team is capable of growth and development. We demonstrate that belief by being genuinely interested in what they are doing and helping them discover ways in which they can build on their strengths. In this way, developmental opportunities open up almost by themselves. "In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flames by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who re-kindle the inner spirit." (Albert Schweitzer)

2. Get To Know Your Team’s Strengths.
The biggest disasters in people management arise when we fail to recognize the natural abilities of our team. It’s what happened to "Rabbit" when he went to school.

When Rabbit first went to school, he was delighted with what the instructor told him. "Rabbit, you have fine legs. You hop well, spring well and jump well. With some guidance, you can be an excellent jumper." Rabbit loved every minute of the Hopping class and excelled.

Then the Head Teacher said: "But Rabbit, you don't swim well or climb trees at all well. You must stop the Jumping class and concentrate on swimming and tree climbing."

So, Rabbit left the Jumping class that he loved and went to the Swimming class and Tree climbing class that he hated.

After a while, miserable and dispirited, he begged his parents to take him out of school. "If only I'd been allowed to stay in Jumping," he thought. (Donald Clifton and Paula Nelson)

Moral of the story: Develop what people are already good at and you’ll help them excel.

3. Find Jobs That Match Your Needs and People’s Needs.
The art of delegating lies in finding a match between the potential of the individual and the needs of the business. When you find that match, you hit on a win-win situation: you gain and the individual gains. By contrast, when you delegate jobs that don’t need to be done, or to people who don’t have any real interest in them, or can’t do them, or don’t want to do them, you simply de-motivate and frustrate. As a result, people become convinced they’re inadequate and lacking in any real talent.

"Don’t try and teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and annoys the pig." (Donald Clifton and Paula Nelson)

4. Agree A Delegation Plan.
When you decide to delegate a job to someone in order to develop their strengths, it is important to create a delegation contract so that you both know what is expected of each other. This contract can include anything you want but useful areas for agreement include: time scales; levels of freedom; levels of authority; constraints; methods of working; worries; how others are affected. You are unlikely to be able to do this without sitting down with the delegatee to agree the contract and then having regular chats as things progress.

5. Let Them Go.
Unless your delegation contract stipulates a very tight amount of control by you, you must let the person get on with things without unnecessary interference. OK, that may sound risky. And it is. After all, the delegatee may foul up. Well, that’s a risk you have to be prepared to take, since this may be the only way they’re going to learn. But unless you let them go, they won’t be able to stretch their wings and fly. Delegation is an act of faith on the part of both you and your delegatee. "Giving people self-confidence is by far the most important thing I can do. Because then they will act." (Jack Welch, CEO of General Electric)

6. Keep Your Eyes On.
Working out how near or far you need to be in a delegating relationship is the true art of managing others. Too close and you don't give people enough freedom to take risks and learn; too far and they lose hope. One rule is to take your hands off but keep your eyes on. This relationship is similar to parents teaching their children to swim. At the start, they stand right next to them with their hands under their tummies. They never let go. Then gradually as the children begin to gain in confidence and skill, they move back. First they let one hand go. Imperceptibly. Then the other hand. Then they take a step back. Then another. And eventually they move out of reach to the side of the pool. In the end they leave the children alone and get out of the pool. But all the time and even now, they never take their eyes off them.

Developmental delegation is by far the most important of all the acts of delegation. It is delegation with a purpose. It grows the one resource that is free and unlimited, your own staff. When it works, you increase all your assets at a stroke and both you and your delegatee are the richer for it.

By Eric Garner

© Eric Garner, Eric Garner is Managing Director of an elearning company that creates and sells a range of etraining software for businesses in management and personal development. Eric by profession is an experienced management and soft skills trainer. His last big contract was for the UK Department of Works and Pensions training new recruits in the Pensions industry. Garner have over 20 years' experience as a Human Resources Manager and is a Chartered Member of the UK Institute of Personnel and Development. Eric hold degrees from Cambridge University.  For instant solutions to all your management training needs, visit ManageTrainLearn and download amazing FREE training software. And while you’re there, make sure you try out our prize quiz, get your surprise bonus gift, and subscribe to our fortnightly newsletter. Go and get the ManageTrainLearn experience now!