Tag: vocation

3D Juggling 677: Eye to Eye

Claire writes: “We got a call the other day from someone who had decided to apply for a new role and wanted some support in thinking about what skills and experience he brings so that he could make a useful application.

Two days later he rang back and cancelled. By looking the opportunity in the eye, and committing to apply, he had recognised that this was not for him at the moment.

It’s easy to wonder from a distance. It’s easier to decide if you look it in the eye. So a useful coaching question can be ‘Go on then’ … ‘How does that feel?’ It is a way of looking a choice in the eye in the room (as long as you work to look an opposite choice in the eye as well!)

© 2015 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 633: Life- Life Balance

Our guest blogger this week is Adrian Nolloth.  Adrian writes: “I’ve always had a problem with the term ‘Work Life Balance’. We all know what it means, but it’s what it implies that bothers me. It says that there are two separate compartments: life and work, and that work is somehow different from life.

Surely if work is a valid part of the whole of life, then why the segregation?  Work, let’s face it, has the potential to be both boring and exhilarating, but then again so does life. They can both be rewarding –  perhaps in different ways. Life can be tough and difficult – but so can work. Work is something that we can absorb ourselves into and that can engage us totally – but then there are certain things we choose to do in life that can do that too.

Hang on… choose?  Choices?  Is that the key to this? Maybe the work/ life is about choices – and where there are choices there is a balance to be struck. Where possible, which parts of our whole life do we choose to allow priority over other areas for a given time? There are always balancing acts to perform in our lives, mainly due to what it throws up into our path (it has been said that life is what happens to us when we were busy making other plans).

The message in the Work Life Balance statement is that the choices we make in order to bring some kind of balance into our lives are important. So, whether it’s work, family, finances, friends, leisure, church… the list goes on, it’s all LIFE as we know it.

To quote the immortal words from the 1996 film Trainspotting – CHOOSE LIFE!”

© 2014 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 629: Inside Out

Claire writes: “‘Life has an inside as well as an outside’ was something Jeanette Winterson said in her Radio 4 discussion with the late John Taverner and others last week.

Something to ponder in the workplace?”

© 2013 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 617: Why why is useful sometimes

Last week we said goodbye to Liz Ford one of our team of coaches.  Thanks, Liz, for all that you brought to the team.  We wish you well in the future.

Claire writes: “I have never been a great fan of the question why, because often people can’t answer a question about why they want a job, or did something.  But as Simon Sinek points out in this TED Video, when people know why they do what they do and understand enough about their purpose, it makes all the difference.

“People don’t buy what you do; people buy why you do it.”, he says and that’s why “Martin Luther King gave the ‘I have a dream’ speech, not the ‘I have a plan’ speech.”

If you look at it like that, I love why!

© 2013 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 615: What do people come to you for?

Claire writes: “The more we work with people changing jobs, the more I realise that many of us don’t know what we can do.  We get on with our jobs and our lives without giving much time or attention to noticing the skills and gifts that we are using every day. Which is fine until it comes to changing tack on our career path and a CV that says I have done a job quite like the job I am applying for is no longer enough.  And whether we are thinking about what other kinds of role might be suitable for someone like us, or trying to get short listed for a job that we know deep down we could do, we suddenly need to be fluent enough in describing our skills – with evidence.

Last week I heard a coach ask a great question – “What do people come to you for?”.  That gives some helpful insight into the gifts and skills and style of working that is valued by others.  Another useful tool might be to say – if I was applying for a job alongside someone who had a very similar biography to mine but was not very good at the job, how would I describe what was different about the way I work?  Because in the end, we need to understand what we can do, and be able to describe it enough, if we are going to be able to discern what a job move might be, or help a potential employer decide that we are the person they would like to do the role.”

© 2013 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 611: Out Of Body Experience

Welcome to all our new readers this week – we’ve met a whole bunch of lovely people who have signed up in the last few weeks. Hot off the press, there will be a Team Coaching Masterclass in Milton Keynes on 4th July.  Alan and Claire will be unpacking some of the interesting things about working with teams.

Claire writes: “There’s a lot of change going on and we are meeting an increasing number of people who are looking to change jobs and finding the interview process a challenging thing to navigate.  If you have been brought up with humility as a value, an interview can feel like a shameless exercise in self promotion.  The conflict that this creates in people means that some people take their body to the interview and leave the real self outside the door – like an out of body experience.  The same can happen with introverts who are only just arriving as the interview is ending – and who come up with the best answers out of everyone – two days after the decision has been made.

What can be done?  Firstly, it’s a mindset.  It doesn’t have to be self promotion but if you can’t describe how you do what you do, no one else will speak for you.  Secondly, good preparation and identifying stories that demonstrate that can really make a difference.  It’s worth thinking through what evidence the panel is looking for and noting key words that will remind you what story might illustrate that.  If you can answer with an example and then say what happened you will find that it feels less arrogant.  Often people we work with jot down names of people to help them remember their stories.  Then instead of going in alone, you will be going to the interview with a cloud of witnesses who will help you describe how you do what you do.  Because in the end, although the panel are looking to see that you match the person profile, almost every candidate will.  They will probably appoint on what’s different and your stories will help them see what that is.”

© 2013 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 596: Making a Difference

Happy Christmas!  We will be closing the office later this week and will reopen on Friday January 4th. See you on the other side!

Claire writes: “We usually get a flurry of interest in Career Makeovers after the Christmas break.  This year it’s come a little early and we have been having really interesting conversations with people about what next?  Often, we find, when people are looking for a change of career and they are not sure what that might be, they say ‘I want to make a difference’.  As Julia Butterfly Hill an Eco Activist said, “The question is not ‘Can you make a difference?’ You already do make a difference. It’s just a matter of what kind of difference you want to make, during your life on this planet.”  

Changing the question can really help.  So if you know you want to make a difference, what kind of a difference do you want to make?  And what kind of a difference will be enough? Think about it…”

© 2012 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 489: Jam

Claire writes: “I was having Greek Salad for lunch during one of our courses when a delegate asked me: So is your work thick jam or thin jam?

We began to talk and it helped me to really understand that our purpose is to meet people for a short period of time and then for them to begin to engage differently with their work or career.  Thin jam.

I’m not keen on reusing questions but it has proved to be useful in many different contexts.  I recently asked a Board of Trustees the jam question about their operational work.  It’s a great career change question when people are considering whether they wish to have a deep impact with a small group of people or a wider impact with a larger group.  And if your organisation is restructuring it’s a great question to reclarify your purpose within the organisation.

So what’s your purpose: Thick jam or thin jam?”

© 2010 3D Coaching Ltd
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3D Juggling 551: What vocation looks like

Claire writes: ‘There’s a great line in Shirley Valentine where she says: “Why do we get all this life if we never use it?”

Every week we talk to people who are trying to find a job where they can feel fulfilled.  You can find all our ideas on the website.  Because when people find a place where what they are good at combines with what they love and what an organisation will pay for, you can see it in their eyes.  That’s what Auden describes in Horae Canonicae

You need not see what someone is doing

to know if it is his vocation,

you have only to watch his eyes:

a cook mixing a sauce, a surgeon

making a primary incision,

a clerk completing a bill of lading,

wear the same rapt expression, forgetting

themselves in a function.

How beautiful it is,

that eye-on-the-object look

Have you found yours? Think about it…”
© 2011 3D Coaching Ltd
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Alternative to Mission Statement

Jude Trenier, who was at Spring Harvest, just sent me an interesting link from Donald Miller‘s blog about an alternative to a mission statement. We use a similar exercise in some Career Makeovers and this makes it even clearer. Have a look…