How to Approach a New Direct Manager

Approach changes in leadership, like having a new direct manager, with anticipation and excitement, learn to see the opportunities, and prepare for the best possible outcome.

Getting a new direct manager is a situation that all of you have experienced, or will experience in the future. It can be intimidating and even scary but it does not have to be that way. Actually, it is an opportunity for a fresh start and to change or reinvent some of the processes that did not work well in the past.

This article describes a toolbox for approaching a change in leadership with excitement, anticipation, and deliberation. It can be used in various situations, for example when you start a new job, when you move to a new organization within your current employer, or when you get a new direct manager after organizational changes. It is based on my experience over the years facing numerous such occasions.

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The Best Books I’ve Read in 2017

A list of the best books I’ve read in 2017 that are relevant to the topics in my blog – personal and professional growth, optimization and productivity.

2017 was a busy year for me. I started this blog, changed my job, changed the country I live in … and the continent. But most importantly, I kept reading new and exciting books throughout the year. It was not easy, I had to read in busses and trains, at 5:00 AM and 10:00 PM. And I managed to cover all sorts of genres that could help me improve – philosophy, business, self-help, history, biographies. Here, I would like to share with you the best books for this year.

Before that, in 2016, spent a lot of time to setup my Goodreads account (link) and enter all the books I’ve read in the past. And for 2017, I set a personal goal in the platform to read 20 books. Challenges has remained my main motivator throughout my life and now I am finishing book 25 of the year! I know that the number is pathetic compared to other people that read 50+, 100+ and even 200+ books/year, but it is a great achievement for me.

In this article, I list the best 5 books that I would recommend to anyone out of this year’s 25. Here, I will stick to the books relevant to the topics in my blog and I will have a separate post for the most entertaining books that do not fall into this category.

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Efficient Meeting – How to Get the Most of a Meeting

Learn how to organize and host an efficient meeting in order to build your personal brand, lower costs and drive success in your organization.

Efficient meeting means a meeting on which the organizer is prepared, the participants know what is expected of them, there is a designated note taker. An efficient meeting saves time, money and energy and produces results, action items and drives the success of the organizations.

The average corporate employee spends between 35% and 50% of their time in meetings. Even more, they spend more and more time in meetings every year, compared to the previous. Unproductive meetings are estimated to waste a whopping $37 billion in the US alone.

The key to having productive, efficient meetings is in preparation, execution and follow-up. When you will host a meeting, you should spend time thinking about the format, participants and the topics that will be covered. During the meeting, you should steer the discussion towards the topics discussed and not let it slip. After the meeting, you should publish the outcome and follow up on the action items.

As simple as it may sound, the reality is not that easy. It takes a lot of experience, tools and discipline to organize and host a productive meeting. This article is going to give you high-level advice that comes from best practices in fortune 500 companies.

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Organization Skills – How to Organize Your Desk

Organization skills on the workplace can be very positive for your career. This article explains how to plan and organize your desk, work easier, find things fast and be productive.

Good organization skills bring not only order to you life, but also allow you to be more productive by reducing clutter and helping you find fast what you are looking for. Organizing your desk (at work, in your workplace at home or just at home) is one of the vital steps. Organizing things on the outside could often help you organize things on the inside.

When I start a new job, I always start at organizing my computer/laptop first. But immediately after that I start organizing my desk. Why is that important to me? Well first of all, you find things easier. Second of all, it helps others think highly of you and perceive you as an organized (and reliable person), which is beneficial. And last but not least, it gives you a safe spot among the whole chaos of starting a new job.

I usually re-organize my desk even when I am in a new position within the same company. Or just regularly throughout the year. Throwing garbage out is equally important as organizing what you really need.

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Task Management – 9 Tips to Improve Your Productivity

Most Important Task is a critical task that benefits your goals the most. Learn how to use that task management method to improve your performance.

Do you feel that your life has become an endless to-do list with tasks? And it gets longer and longer no matter how much time you spend working on those tasks? Are your tasks like the Hydra from Hercules – once you finish one, three new ones come in its place? Do you spend most of your day getting one urgent task done after the other? If yes, then you badly need better task management skills.

Task management means managing a task through its life cycle – planning, testing, tracking and reporting. It helps individuals to achieve their goals and groups to collaborate and accomplish collective goals. Tasks have different complexity (from low to high), different priority (from low to high) and different urgency (from low to high).

Most Important Tasks (MIT) is a method for task management of selecting the most important tasks for the day and making sure that they get done. This way you can concentrate on the tasks which would bring the most value to you.

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