Monday, August 28, 2006



Sunday, April 24, 2005

Team Spirit

One of the most talked about concept, team spirit is never the less one of the least understood concepts.

If you are a recruiter, let me ask you - how many applications did you receive lately, that didn't mention team spirit as one of the main characteristics of the candidate? It seems like everybody (or almost) knows how to and wants to work in a team. Is it really that true? Are we all very good team players? And more important.... is that truly a must have trait?

For the first question it's easy to find an answer by looking at what happens in reality. In our opinion (MindSmith) the answer will be no, because some of the main problems that HR management has to face today are work groups that don't work so good together, management teams that are not such a team at all, individuals preoccupied more and more about their needs and interests ...and the family spirit vanishing in all the traditional companies ... and even in the small companies. No, because most of as are not sincerely devoted to the team spirit, and some of us just cannot cope with it (personality traits).

The answer for the last question is both yes and no.

Yes because, more and more the jobs, the businesses and almost everything is pulled out in a team and not by single effort ...and more and more we are force to adapt very quickly to new teams (changing jobs, changing homes, towns, countries, interests etc. at the speed of light).

No because one of the main power engines for market economy is individual interests and needs, one of the main power engines in one person's development is his unique desire to become better and better, to achieve more, to satisfy his personal needs. And is also true that we are fundamentally motivated by different things and just "build" different. Some can be very good team players and by this achieving more, and being more satisfied and motivated, some can be very good entrepreneurs and be highly motivated from achieving on their own ideas and efforts, and some of us are doing a bit of both - they start on their own on the quest for new challenges, visions, ideas ... but they easily gather and work in a team to transform them in reality. The last ones are called "LEADERS".

Eventually, being different means being more successful ...and a powerful organization has members from all three categories ... of course, in different proportions.

Getting back to the main question: is it the team spirit "a must have trait"? From the ideas expressed before you could understand that we don't agree with "yes". But if the answer is no, why is such a popular concept and why are so important team-buildings?

We do say that some can be successful (corresponding to their needs and values) and not being great team players. We also said, if you remember, that Leaders (eventually a model of success for almost everybody), have something of both - individualism and team spirit ("You cannot be a great Leader, if you are not (from time to time) a great follower") and we also say that any successful organization must be supported by a strong team (so very good team players).

And why are so important team-buildings? For the individualists - they need to have a minimum knowledge and skill about working in a team (from time to time and in specific cases they all have to work in a team - e.g. establishing a family is, among others, establishing a team). For the "team players" - is basically a step forward in performing better and improving the skill. For the leaders - they need to be a part of their team, and more ... they have to know how to build, maintain and develop teams ... and even more important - to exercise it.

And more good news ... If you participate to a true team-building program (as a very short check list: minimum 2-3 days - best results at 10-14 days, 4-8 people in a team, location - totally different from the usual working place, challenges from medium to hard, constantly changing environment and challenges) you get more than just an improved team working skill and usually better communication.

A great team building program first of all puts you in the right state of mind for success. It helps you get a strong contact with your inner self at a emotionally, rationally, spiritually level that will help you overcome mind and body limits at such a fast rate that will amaze you months after the event. It will help and force you demolish a great number of prejudices about you, colleagues, management staff and life in general …day after day and team building after team building with seemingly unlimited resources.

After that, a great team building will help you help others do the same thing during the event and after. You’ll have such a great level of contact that words will often seem useless and communication will just flow. During the event you will build stories to tell, values to share and keep, trust beyond the professional relation and almost every time friendship that will overpass in time the formal relation.

You’ll probably say … that may be true, but what if it’s just what trainers say, books say, articles say …and has no real correspondent in real life? We have to admit, that in most cases, at least in Romania, it is far from what you can find on the market. Still there are some that can and will do this type of events.

And remember ….the mind functions very similar to a parachute: only when it’s open.


Mircea Boistean

Fear and Forgetting

Those were two of my topics I reached for the past month. Do have a look at the two articles I’ve wrote. It takes just a minute.

Why do I pay great interest in debating such nasty aspects of human character? Why do we even bather to challenge those aspects, instead we could’ve focused in growing the skills we already have.

In our trainings we generally say that in our life we should concentrate 70% of our efforts in getting better in such areas we already posses the skill at a high level – A area, 25% of our efforts should go to the skills which we have, but the skill needs more time to develop – B area, and only 5% to the areas where we lack the skill – C area. Development in all areas is necessary, and by applying statistics, these were the real results.

This theory is even more so to strengthen our belief, as important efforts should go fighting with fear and controlling forgetting. We call this aspect FFF – fighting fear and forgetting.

In reality FFF takes little of your time (C area – 5%), when you are keen in improving your life, and results are way better then firstly predicted (effects in A and B areas the “95%”). In FFF we meet two types of results, the first one are the “losers”, people who haven’t made the “step forward”, and “winners”, well, I think we now this category. They managed fear and controlled forgetting.

We have the example here of how 5% of your efforts gives you 95% more result. By overcoming fear, you will take the next step and improve A and B areas, which other ways you wouldn’t have done. And by controlling forgetting you will get more from the same amount of time and resources. And if this improves your life by as little as 2% more than the average individual, for each year of your life then this says that in 40 years time you will be 2.2 times as skilled as compared with the average person. Imagine what 95% improvement each year more than the average will do for you. In as much time you will become a one man army.

Let me ask what makes the Forbes 100 people more successful than you?
In my humble opinion I think that creating and mastering luck. Yes, “luck” you got it well, only that “luck” is called in today’s words “opportunity”.

Are you skilled enough to master opportunities? If yes what holds you back? Is it fear? Or did you already forget what was it about?

You have to take the “step forward” in FFF. So don’t forget.

Just do it.


Mihai A. Pop

Saturday, March 19, 2005

How do people climb trees? - Part 2

After reading my article a friend of mine told me something amazing

... ... ...
Among native Americans there is a saying about "how to climb trees" (remember this is about all kinds of "trees" - social, economical, knowledge etc.):

You can climb the biggest trees* in two ways:
1) you choose one of the oldest trees (and the tallest) and try to conquer it ... is a difficult task ... but, in the end, you might succeed it.
2) you can choose to plant a seed, take care of the new plant and stick with her while growing in a tree. All this time they remain on top. The results are amazing - if you take really good care of the tree it can beat any of the already known tall trees, it's your own achievement and its easy to gain altitude - you grow in height together with the tree
.... ... ...
*Please note that "the biggest trees" were, for native Americans, sequoias
... ... ...

With some extent we can try to describe a characteristic of the well known dual model "manager - leadership".

Managers try to achieve the best from the already existing, are attracted more about easy or short terms achievements. For short periods of time they might reach the top ...but they have a constantly endangered position, which, today, rarely can be defended for more than 3-5 years.

Leaders grow their own ideas, are attracted more towards a vision, which usually involves long term, sustained, inspired effort. It's easier for them to remain on top, because they are always on top on their own creation, and usually have a broader view ...being always on top ... they can see the hole picture least for their business.

Now ask yourself ... you usually go for the results, or for the ideas? Do you prefer improving, or you prefer improvising? You want to reach the highest of what is ...or you stubbornly and passionately try to reach the highest of what might be?

We are all motivated by success and none of the two ways is wrong - is just a matter of choices and personality.

And remember: "Success is a measure of how high you bounce when you hit bottom" (George S. Patton)