Wednesday, December 30, 2009

6 Tips For Effective Negotiations



"Know what you want, and what you're willing to let go", - Dr.Bob.

Sorry for those offended with the sexual suggestion in the vid. That's just his style. Make sure you get the REAL points...

Be.You.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Strategic Tools: SWOT Analysis

SWOT Analysis is a strategic planning method used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of an organization.

Many student clubs do SWOT analysis, many fail to use it effectively. The reason, the analysis was done wrong.



SWOT Analysis is a strategic planning method used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Many student clubs do SWOT analysis, many fail to use it effectively. The reason, the analysis was done wrong.

The Challenges, Constraints & Promoters helps you to understand what factors are positive & negative factors. From my experience, if we start at SWOT analysis immediately we would be easily confused as which are positive (strength & opportunity) and which are negative factors (weakness & threat). My previous model would make it easier to understand the differences.

Challenges: Everything you can think of, that is in the way of your organization.
Promoters: Challenges you can overcome, or you are confident can be overcome.
Constraints: Challengers you cannot overcome or not sure how to overcome.

But first, let me explain the basics of the SWOT Analysis. There are 3 parts:
  • Arranging Promoters & Challenges into S, W, O, T
  • Analyzing & Matching Factors Appropriately in the SWOT Matrix
  • Strategy Formulation for each Matrix – SO, ST, WO, WT


Arranging Promoters & Challenges into S, W, O, T

In the previous models, you should know your promoters & challenges.

  • Promoters = Strengths (internal) + Opportunities (external).
  • Constraints = Weakness (internal) + Threat (external)
  • Internal = something within your organization, something the organization can control.
  • External = something outside your organization, something the organization cannot control.

With the explanation above, arrange the entire problem above accordingly, and put them in the matrix as the picture below.


Analysing & Matching Factors Appropriately in the SWOT Matrix



Some of the problems you list down are related. Example:

Threat: College Administration Bureaucracy makes project application takes too long to get approved
Opportunity: My father is the college’s admin’s boss.
Strategy: Go get my father to sign it during dinner time for me.


This is a lame example but I hope you get the point. There are four possibilities where Strength, Weakness, Opportunity & Threat can be related. They are:

  • Strength – Opportunity
  • Strength – Threat
  • Weakness– Opportunity
  • Weakness – Threat

You shall relate the factors according to the possibilities mentioned above.

Strategy Formulation for each Matrix – SO, ST, WO, WT



Then, try to find solutions for each ‘match’ you made. If you can (e.g.: Strategy: Go get my father to sign it during dinner time for me), put them in the corresponding boxes, like the example below.


Continue until you cannot think anymore. At the end, you should see which part of the four matrixes is most filled with solutions. So you should have an idea what you would be facing & how to solve them. The next part would be...

Picking the overall generic strategy you would want to take.

But that’s for another article. See you later.

Be.You.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Perceived Value: Your life is only about what YOU think, not others...



Guys & girls, every time you want to buy that expensive shirt or car, please understand the reason why. If you want to show off. No need la. If you want to reward yourself, can.

From the video: "Research shows that there is no correlation between price of wine & enjoyment, unless the price is disclosed"

In other words, you will only enjoy the wine when you know your friends know the wine is expensive. LOL

Be.You.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Strategic Tools: Challenges, Promoters, Constraints Model



In order to create your strategy, you need to understand your surroundings. It's challenges, constraints and it's promoting factors.

To use this tool well, student leaders need to be experienced. Unfortunately, a lot of student leaders are always inexperienced because they always do 'easy' projects, and also because they do not have vision for their club. A person who does not take initiative to more cannot 'see' more.

Let's continue on how to use this tool. First, list down all the challenges and problems you think you will face in the upcoming term/year. You can get ideas by referring to last year's problems or from the problems faced by other student organizations. Please be resourceful and creative, that's the least you can do if you're not 'experienced'.

Some of the problems you listed might be small & easy to solve, some might be irrelevant or not in our control. But that does not matter, as long as you think it might happen to the club, just list it down.

The next step is to filter the challenges into Promoters & Constraints. Refer to 'Challenges' list and brainstorm solutions to them. It does not need to be so specific, detailed or effective. Just enough for you to have a rough idea how to solve it. The important thing is for you to realize what & who can help you in helping your organization reach it's goals. List these solutions as 'Promoters'.

If you still can't think of the solutions, take all the unsolved 'challenges' and put them under 'Constraints'. Constraints are now problems that will pose a major problem to your organization. No matter how good is your organization in doing something, there is always some part of the organization that will be held up this bottleneck, this constraint.

This stage is relatively easy. It's just that when I was in AIESEC, I felt that the usual SWOT analysis wasn't done effective enough. So I added this tool before SWOT analysis.You'll see why later. Lastly, remember that when you are using the other strategic tools like SWOT Analysis for example, please refer to this part again if you are lost.

Be.You.



Friday, December 18, 2009

5 Signs Of True Leadership

Everyone is talking about leadership, but still not everyone wants to or able to rise up as a leader. I think it's because of the mentality & attitudes one have in life. Anyway these 5 signs below will help you identify true leaders.



Leadership Is To Create Positive Change.

If you are somebody with power and you abuse it to do something selfish, then you are not a leader. Because we don't need people to create negative changes, it can happen by itself. It's so easy to destroy but takes a lot effort to build. Leaders build, Leader's who don't build are not really leaders. Even if you are a CEO, you are expected to grow the company, a positive change.

You Are Always Your Own Leader.

You may not be able to become a CEO but at least at some point in time, you are leading someone or some group of people. I'm sure at one point you are a leader of your family. I'm really sure that everyone is the leader of your own life. The choices you makes, only you are responsible for it. To me, that's make you a leader. A person who understands this, understands that leadership is not position but an attitude towards life. Which means they already have the right attitude.

Leadership Is People Skill Plus Being Competent At Working.


You need to be smart and also smart in working with people. As you know people have feelings & emotions, different personalities and attitudes. Also, in work there can be so many kinds of problems with different solutions. People skills are about communicating well with team mates, understanding of their situations and etc. Work competencies is about management, technical skills & etc. Being a successful leader requires us to be good at both. Imagine, would Vision 2020 happen if Dr.M does not know how to communicate his vision to Malaysia? Also, would you be happy if a teammate is all talk but no action?

You Can Only Learn Leadership By Doing.

You cannot learn leadership from a book and seminar, nuff said.

Leaders Do Things For The Right Reasons.

If a leader does something out of self-interest he is not a leader. Similar to my points in "Leaders Create Positive Change", we don't need 'leaders' who destroy by being corrupt, the destruction can happen without them. A leader is not motivated solely by fame or money, because those are easily attained when you are a leader. They are motivated to improve the community because they also are a part of the community. They want to change the world into a better place. Idealistic or not is up to themselves to think, but doubt never help ideals become reality. You can read more here.

For me personally, I want to make a change in my life and to the community around me. Because how I lead myself and my community would affect the quality of life I'm living in and the people I love. I'm not so noble to bring change to the whole world, but as long I can protect me & the people around it would be good enough. And I need leadership qualities in me to do that.

Be.You.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Strategic Thinking Tools

There are many strategic models and tools that are available and event taught. However, the problem is which one is suitable and effective to be used by Student Organisation.



Below are the tools that student leaders can start with:

  1. List Challenges, Constraints & Promoters
  2. SWOT Analysis
  3. SWOT Strategy Formulation
  4. Goals Grid


List Challenges, Constraints & Promoters

List down everything that you think is a challenge in your organization. Brainstorm of ways to overcome them. If you can group them under 'promoters', if not, group them under 'constraints'

SWOT Analysis

Identify your organization's strength & weaknesses and your external surroundings threats and opportunites. Group & list them accordingly so you can analye your organization's standing.

Strategy Formulation

Once you understand the position of your organization you can choose a strategy that fits your current situation based on the matrix above.


Goals Grid

This is an effective tool in comparing what you want for the organization & whether you have the resources to achieve it.

So now, you have some tools to help you in your strategic planning. Play around with these tools first. Even better, find your own and implement it. Further explanations will be available in my future posts so hang on, k?

Be.You.

Monday, December 7, 2009

MyLDS Visualtweets!

Hi, guys, sorry for the late post. Currently, at Malaysian Leadership Development Seminar '09 (MyLDS). Very busy.

Anyway, I'd like to introduce you guys to this new web application I found. Thanks to Brandon. It allows tweets with similar hashtags (#) to appear in a very flashy and beautiful manner. Check it out in the link below.

http://visibletweets.com/#query=%23mylds&animation=1

Be.You.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Read It Later

Ever found a cool website but don't have the time to read it now? Use Read It Later. Unlike a bookmark, it's much easier for websites that you just want to read once only but a later time.

With just one click, you can record it for you to read later by pressing it's icon. A clean and simple to use menu will appear. Try it out and give your comments.

Be.You.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

4 Rules of Effective Brainstorming

Brainstorming is a necessary skill leaders must have in order to promote creativity & innovation in the organization.

A brainstorming session is relatively easy to do, but to make it an effective one requires some knowledge. An effective session means a lot of ideas are brainstormed. Anyway, to do one, you at least need to know the 4 rules of effective brainstorming.

Focus On Quantity

No, need to care about the quality of it. You can filter the good and bad ideas later. No use filtering ideas when you have only a small amount of ideas. But when you have a lot of ideas, that's another story.

No Criticism

Don't try to show you're so smart. If you're really smart, give ideas la. When you criticize another person's idea (no matter how 'polite' you are), the person won't be so eager to share more ideas because he's afraid or shy that he might make more mistakes. Also, understand that every idea can lead to another idea. Do not shoot down the idea so soon, maybe some parts of it can used. If you reject the whole idea so easily, you may lose the chance to use a portion of the idea, and will have less ideas to modify or to think about.

Unusual Ideas Are Welcome

We are conditioned in our mind to play safe, never challenge the status quo, follow the herd mentality. This does not create new ideas or innovation. So be brave and give unusual ideas. Something unusual at first can somehow be re-made into something practical but still innovative. Again, your objective for the brainstorming session is quantity not quality.

Combine and Improve Ideas

I said before that ideas can change as long as people openly communicate, how? Because as more people give input, ideas tend to mix around, modified and change. I have stated before that editing & modifying is the 2nd stage of creativity. So, don't limit yourself. If the idea is not good enough, use parts of it that you think you can use.

Please apply the rules strictly, as ideas by nature are hard to come by. Ideas needs the right culture and atmosphere for it to materialize itself. A culture of insecurity or inconfidence does not promote innovation & creativity. As a leader you are the person to create this atmosphere or otherwise.

Be.You

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Your bosses/teammates keep changing what they say? Here's the Solution!

Always have arguments with your team mates? Buy this!



Well, in the video it's says to solve arguments between married couple but can also apply in teams rite? :D

Be.You

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Why Student Leadership Lacks Strategic Thinking

University Student's All Study, No Co-curricular Mentality limits their experience in managing real life problems ultimate limits their strategic thinking abilities.

A lot of student organizations lack strategic thinking skills. The proof, the same issues have been going on for ages and no improvement can be seen. If the students don't see any improvement, it's enough for me to say you are not making any improvements. Imagine if you are a leader in a business, in politics or in public services. Remember the problems when you were a leader in university? You will face them again. What makes you can handle them better this time in the future? But I don't blame it all on the student organizations, because they are not taught to equip themselves with managerial skills. Here are some reasons this situations prevail:

Unnecessary Politics In Student Leadership

Political ideologies has no place in student politics. Students just want our food affordable, clean and healthy. Our college safe to live in and our toilets clean. Anything else is irrelevant. You can read a more detailed discussion here. Malaysia has a bad culture of politicizing everything. And when that happens, the 'talkers' will always talk too much BS about the problem, but NOTHING about the solution; which is what strategic thinking is. Creating strategies, Solving problems. This bad habit is then picked up by the young generation. Shame on you politicians.

Lack of Education Syllabus

Student Leadership are best to be headed by experienced students and is not a place to 'learn'. By design or by negligence, these organizations do not have a structured education plan. Every time you see a student club's performance fluctuate it is because of the club's leadership. This fluctuation is a sign of an absence in the club's initiative to continuously develop leaders. No education plan means no platform for students to develop their leadership skills which include strategic thinking skills.

Lack of Foresight

Strategic thinking is basically the ability to foresee problems and formulate strategies to solve them. However, not all student leader can anticipate problem well. This comes with experience in doing challenging projects. But many students love doing lame and easy projects. You can read my classification of such students, here. Also, some student leaders are not sincere, they are just power hungry, want to show off, want to get close to ministers and etc. So 'strategic thinking' for the student clubs is not their priority, but 'strategic thinking' for themselves, yes la.

At the end of the day, student leaders must focus on developing their managerial skills. Their 'talking' skills is perfect already. I see a lot of students are confused what are the role of student leadership and also they are too focused on the politics and not the solutions. Read here, where I shoot a few people, give your comments, ok?

Be.You.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Malaysia Leadership Development Seminar 2009 (MyLDS'09)

I'll be facilitating for a AIESEC's national level conference in UUM. Come and join me! I think all student leaders should come and see a different approach to student leadership...



Malaysia Leadership Development Seminar (MyLDS) is a national conference held annually by AIESEC in Malaysia. This year, Malaysia will be held in Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM). Gathering 500 youths mainly from AIESEC local chapters in Malaysia, expansion LCs and AIESECers from all around the world participate in MyLDS 2009.This most anticipated national conference – Malaysia Leadership Development Seminar 2009 will expose youth to its intense learning experience, social networking, leadership skill enhancement and thus leading them to become potential leaders of tomorrow.Malaysia Leadership Development Seminar 2009 will be held on 6th - 11th December 2009. A not-to-be missed of 6-days-5-nights event is awaiting for young leaders to color the journey of self discovery and explore their hidden potentials!
The CLOSING DATE for registration is on 20th NOVEMBER 2009! Register now!
INFORMATION :

Date: 6th - 11th December 2009
Opening date for registration : 8th Oct 2009
Closing date for registration : 20th Nov 2009, 2359 hour (GMT +8)
Conference Fee: RM 120 (not included transportation and Pre-MyLDS)
Due date for payment: 23rd Nov 2009 (Those who fail to pay by 23rd Nov will be fined RM 20)
For more information, please visit http://www.aiesecuum.org/MyLDS09.htm or contact:

Wei Mun

Organizing Committee President of MyLDS'09

Mobile: +60(12)539 7739

Email: lauweimun@gmail.com

Also visit our facebook at http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=129806647234

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Facebook Manners And You

You all are using facebook right? Well, it's time to learn some good manners in using it! I'm not saying my manners are good though ;)



Be.You.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Why strategic thinking is important?

Strategic thinking is a must for every student leader, especially to those who are ambitious in becoming politicians. Why are there so many crappy politicians today? Because when they were student leaders, they have no one to teach them strategic thinking.

Thinking Long-Term

I see a lot president of student clubs never plan long term or even worse they never care about the future consequences of his or her actions. A typical example is human resource issues. Every year, a college student committee would be having many projects. Most of it requires people with multimedia & graphical skills. A long term thinking student committee president would utilize the colleges's already existing Graphics & Multimedia Club to recruit and train its members to become a pool of students skilled in graphics & multimedia. The reality is the club is a dead club with no activities and members, and every year the student projects faces constraints of man power skilled in graphics. I know that there will be problems regardless of what happens but...

Life Is About Using the Best Way of Using What You Have

In business you would learn the term Return on Investment (ROI) it shows how much you would get back for each dollar you invested in something. Although in the student club context you would not need to face such things, but you would also still face constraints especially time and manpower, because the biggest limitations in life is time & knowledge. Strategic thinking starts with knowing what you want and understanding your constraints. Constraints are everywhere but achievers manage those constraints. How? By...

Aligning All Your Efforts

Like I said, constraints are everywhere. Strategic thinking forces us to think of a way of using our resources effectively and efficiently. Planning is the first step. Without planning you wouldn't know where to allocate your resources. The result would be poor coordination, a lot of last minute jobs which no one wants. Plan and align every action to your ultimate goal. Plan it in small steps. If you cannot do sudden large chunks of work, make it smaller, simpler and at a consistently interval points in time. Identify redundant work or work that can easily be duplicated. By doing all this you wouldn't waste on doing things that's not important. No wasting equals having more of the things you need to reach your objective.

Be You.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

4 things you MUST do in unversity


Behind every opportunity is a person. People make miracles happen. It doesn't happen by themselves. Find people who can help each other to achieve our goals in life. You can start by joining student clubs. Even to find work, knowing a few people is necessary. More friends, equals more knowledge can be shared in between of you. But for that to happen, you need to learn how to communicate well. Again, you can learn this in GOOD student organization. In university co-curricular, your strategy MUST be quality over quantity!

Thx Brandon,

Be.You.

Friday, November 6, 2009

What Is Strategic Thinking?

Strategic thinking is a way of thinking strategically, Duh! ;) Strategic thinking focuses on IDENTIFYING opportunities in developing their organization into a better one. The problem with student leaders is because they are not thought to develop their thinking process, making their mind sharper. Their always been taught to DO stuff (just do projects, no thinking) and TALK stuff (be like politicians, "Salam Muhibah, Salam itu, Salam ini")

A good thinking process to start thinking strategically is to think according to these Elements:

  • Competencies and Skills
  • Products and Offerings
  • Environment and Industry
  • Markets and Customers
  • Competitors and Substitutes


Obviously, there some of the elements that cannot be applied in the student leadership context but we can modify it.

Competencies and Skills: In other words, your members. What are your members are capable of doing. Every club desires do a fancy and big projects but they always forget to consider the capability of their organizing committee.

Products and Offerings: In this case, the club's activities. A Karate club would offer Karate Classes right? What does your club want to offer?

Environment and Industry: This I won't say much, but maybe you can consider the economical and political surrounding. It might affect your club.

Markets and Customers: This is much more important. Your customers are the students who might want to join your club. Do you really know what they want? Entrepreneurship Club! Are you sure your members want to open stall and sell dadih or they want to learn about personal finance and investing?

Competitors and Substitutes: Do I need to explain this?

Ask questions pertaining to these 5 elements so you can see the opportunities and threats that exist. Create plans to overcome. Bottom line, Strategic thinking is about solving problems before it happens. Something a lot of student leaders don't have, the ability to solve problem and the ability of foresight.

Be.You.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Cone Pizza

Got this new outlet near my house which sells cone pizza. Yes, pizza in the shape of a cone like an ice cream. The restaurant is called:

A few pics from it's website and some from my camera. Sorry la bad quality pics, I just wanted to share this new kind of food.




The set above includes the cone pizza, mushroom soup, Pepsi and garlic bread costs about RM14.90

I like it. Had it once a week for the previous 2 weeks.

If you're around Selayang, call me and I show you the place. It's at Selayang Mall actually, just google map it. You can find more info at their website here.

Be.You.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

What is Strategy?

Previously, I have shared why student representative councils lack strategic thinking skills. Hope you didn't feel offended but please thoroughly consider my points. Anyway, today I want to share about strategy and its context in student organizations.

When you guys see a football match or a chess game you would see some people take the defensive game plan, and others would be very aggressive in trying to score goals and etc. That is strategy.
Strategy concerns more with 'why'. It concerns with making the smaller action steps come together to help you achieve with your ultimate goal. For example, a football team would take an aggressive strategy when the opponents defences seems tired or weakened.

Strategy differs from tactics, tactics is action steps. It concerns with how and what you do. A football team with an aggressive attacking strategy would change their positions with more players becoming strikers and etc.

"a strategy is the pattern or plan that integrates an organization's major goals, policies, and action sequences into a cohesive whole." As James Brian Quinn indicated in The Strategy Process: Concepts and Contexts,

If you don't have a strategy, you will waste your resources on things that don't really help you on achieving your ultimate goal.

If your strategy does not help you in:
  • planning effectively
  • helps you allocate resources (man power) wisely

...then that strategy of yours is useless.

Strategy is long term. When I say long term I mean 3 to 5 Years. That's why I have problem believing the competency of the MPP when they have a new vision and mission every year. That's why they have no progress. They change their goal, when their supposed to be building on the foundation of their seniors.

For other student leaders, strategy at its best details 3 - 5years of the club's future direction. Any less than that is just normal planning which doesn't make you special. I even doubt the ability of student councils to plan a year ahead. I know of many student councils that use funds to go holiday at a resort to think of a 'strategy'. Yeah, right...

Thinking long term is an important factor in becoming a leader. Imagine what would happen if our previous Prime Ministers didn't think of investing in the citizen's education, setting up long term policies, creating business through GLCs and etc. What would Malaysia be without PETRONAS, Proton, and FELDA? You might complain stuff, but without them how would Malaysia's economy be like? Leaders for tomorrow have a big responsibility. We are those leaders.

Be.You.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Seeds of Success: Why what people want is not what they REALLY want?

A lot of people say they know what they want, but actually they do not. Only way a drastic event would lead them to make a drastic realization that life is too precious to spend on trivial things. Below are why they get it wrong.


Strong Consumerism Sentiments

Have you heard of the term 'retail therapy'? Have you seen MLM commercial with a guy posing next to a Mercedes? Today, society puts so much pressure on us to have branded clothes, expensive cars and fancy hangout places (star bucks). All of these are things we don't need. But they have shaped our lifestyle. These are all done through advertising to convince you that you 'need' these products. But is that important to you? Is there nothing more important?

Peer Pressure

When you buy a new fancy phone, what would you do afterwards? A lot of you show it to your friends. Once you finish showing off to all your friends, you get bored with it. And then your friend goes buy a better hand phone, and shows off too. So, what is the point of all this.

"Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about."-anon


What you REALLY want is not what others want, and because of that the journey would be different. If your friend's life involves showing off his new hand phone, does that mean you have to do the same?

They don’t know why they want and never stop to know it

I explained this in an earlier article here. But basically it's just that these people never really take the initiative to invest some time to think about what they really want in their life. If they do not do so, then, their life would control them, and not they themselves who are controlling life.


Above is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. This is taught in basic management lectures, but almost all do not understand its significance. Let me put all the three points into the Maslow’s hierarchy context.

Peer Pressure: Belonging And Love Needs - You want to be accepted by your group of friends. Don't worry, real friends won't care what hand phone you have.

Consumerism: Esteem Needs - Buying a Gucci bag does not make you a better person. You're image or reputation is not necessarily better nor do people really care. If you really achieved something, it speaks for itself.

Observe the top most section of the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Self-actualization: Personal Growth and Fulfillment. That is the answer. We just need to focus our time and efforts in developing ourselves. Don’t care about having no friends. I’m sure you will find great people as your friends, on your journey on self-improvement. You don’t need to care about recognition, getting ‘apex university’ title or a ‘datukship’, just focus on growing.

Anyway, I’m sure you get titles and recognition along the way (My father's friend threw it away because he says it makes him feel old, do we really need it?). This is the noblest cause. This is what I mean as ‘Doing Things for right reasons’ not money, not status, not shallow friends but the lifelong pursuit of knowledge and wisdom.

Be.You.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Firdaus Agenda


Everybody wants to change the world. Everybody always criticize other people. Everybody blames somebody. Most of the time, it would be the government. But by blaming only, nothing happens. A lot of people complain but not many are willing to help to solve.

I also want things to be better in life. But I put less hope in politicians. At best, I believe when the politicians and people's interest are aligned, then, something would happen. I guess that's how the world is. There's no free lunch. Either way, what can we do? The Small People.

Let me explain, point by point:

You Can Create Change Without Politics: A lot of people I know would sigh, "sigh...politics, what can I do? I don't have power...". Wrong! We all have power. Even without elections we have power to make changes. Think like an entrepreneur, innovate and solve problems. Do you think Tony Fernandes gave up when AirAsia was a subsidiary of MAS which was a GLC? He went to Mahathir himself to clear the issues. Your weak mentalities are at fault when bad politicians take advantage of the system.

You Need To Be Competent, Competence: Attitude + Knowledge + Skills: When you have the managerial skill & experience, then, you can make a change. Do you see all the NGOs? How can they survive and still promote their cause? They're not doing it to get profit, ok?

Politics Focuses On The Problem And Not The Solution:Sometimes they need to focus on the problem. Ever feel like the politicians purposely fan racial issues?

Malaysians Don’t Have The Right Attitude: Remember I said about you having the weak "I don't have power" mentality. Read more here.


Learning Just For The Sake Of Learning: You just want to get cert, then grad, then get job, then work like robot. If you think your job as a way to contribute to society or country or as something that is noble, then you would like your job more. How can you create change if you're not passionate in doing what you do for a living?

It's not what you do, but how you do it: Doing a club activity, does not make your club a good one, it's how good you do the club activities. The intention to do PPSMI is not enough, it's HOW you implement that determines it's success.

The Right People Are Not At The Right Places:There are many capable intelligent people don't get to hold important posts merely because their opinions differ from the boss. WHO is saying is much more important than WHAT is being said (points of the debate)... All because of petty office politics and etc. We must eliminate these unproductive cultures.

Malaysia Have No Leaders, Only Politician:Leaders Are Different Than Politicians...Politicians can be leaders, only if they can contribute to positive change.

Solve Problems By Being Competent:If it doesn't get better than you're not doing it right. No BS is needed.

Do Things For The Right Reasons:Be sincere la.

More explanations coming. Not in the near future though.

Be.You.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

17 Questions You Must Ask Your Team before You Start

For the past few posts I have discussed the extensively of team dynamics and what are the potential problems that can happen. To avoid them, you can do an expectation setting session. In my version, you need to ask your team 17 questions and discuss with the team what is the expected performance of the team. What are these 17 questions?

Find out in my latest e-book!



Hope it helps in making your team synergy better.

Be you.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Why Do You Need Teamwork and Leadership skills?

“If it's technical challenge, you can always resort to the formulas, but if it's human, there is no formulation to predict them. Managing people is the toughest” - Anonymous


The quote above illustrates the difficulties in dealing with other human beings. But it is something you cannot avoid. When your work in the real world, your boss will be people too, you colleagues will be people too, who have emotions and feelings. Your clients, suppliers, competitors are humans just like you with their own motivations and problems.

You are just one person with only 24 hours to use each day. With that limit, you cannot do much. If you want to achieve more in life, you must work together with other people. There are only two greatest limitations in life: Time and Knowledge. Everyone will face a deadline, that’s why we look for other people to help us. Sometimes we don’t have the skill or knowledge so we have to find someone who does have the knowledge. But then you still have to communicate the idea or plan to that person. You cannot copy paste your ideas or feelings like copy pasting your university assignments.

Everyone will have responsibilities at least at one point in life. At least as a parent. And as a parent you still would have to lead your family. You would still need to be a leader…

In conclusion, learn teamwork & leadership skills, and learn it now while you’re still young and still can afford to make mistakes.

Friday, October 16, 2009

3 Causes of Conflict In a Team

You want to know the causes of conflict in a team? Actually we discussed all of it in my previous articles.

  • Goals
  • Decision Making
  • Work Division
These 3 core issues contribute to conflicts in a team. As a leader you must learn how to organize the operation of these issues and deal with it objectively.

But no matter how good you plan or organize, conflicts would still happen. It's human nature. Some people have no sense of consideration towards other, and keep being selfish. When this happens, the 4th issue of a team will step in. Conflict Resolution. Resolving conflict in a manner that makes sure everybody reaches a mutually beneficial agreement. That means all parties get something, not all but somewhere in the middle where both parties agrees.

There are many methods to resolve conflicts. The easiest yet effective method for student leaders is to do an expectation setting. I'll discuss it in my next article.

Be.You.

4 Malaysian Culture That Prevents Effective Conflict Resolution

Conflict and arguments are a fact of life. Sooner or later you are going to face it, especially if you are in a team or a leader. The only way you can avoid conflict is to isolate yourself from the world. Do you want that? You will face more problems as you strive to achieve more in life. But understand that conflicts are not an enemy or a monster. It is a challenge to be overcome. It is the world's way of determining who is worthy to be successful in life. Where others stop when they see the 'wall', you climb over it. Like I said, one aspect of 'the right attitude' depends on how people react to challenges, conflict and adversity.

So, you should all learn how to handle conflicts well. Remember, the outcome of a conflict resolution is so that a mutually beneficial outcome is reached. You don't want that only you win the argument, but both of you must 'win'. If you keep winning, even if you shouldn't, do you think everyone would continue to support you? There are many reasons people do not handle conflict properly. But today I want the to share the 4 most damaging culture in Malaysians that disrupts effective conflict resolution.
  • It's WHO is saying is much more important than WHAT is being said...
  • You avoid DIRECT confrontation but complain and criticize INDIRECTLY
  • Everything is a personal attack
  • Blame Game
WHO is saying is much more important than WHAT is being said...

Do you see politicians fight? Do you see people fight because of office politics? Do you see people trying to get close to high ranking officials so that they can influence their decisions. Do you see people totally closing their minds to a person's debate just because he is from another political affiliation. The truth does not depend on who is saying it, facts never change but their interpretations of it does. You must base your judgment on objectivity in resolving conflicts. Don't let position/rank or emotions cloud your decision.


You avoid DIRECT confrontation but complain and criticize INDIRECTLY

This always happen in every student club. In meetings you keep keep quite. The student leader gives work, you nod and accept. But then behind the person's back you badmouth him/her. If you don't tell your boss up front, how do you expect him/her to know? Malaysians always try to be harmonious and try to avoid conflicts. But in actuality, you are only postponing the problem. Imagine this. You are unhappy that your boss always gives hints that he isn't satisfied with your work. You don't want to create trouble and try to improve your work, but still not good enough. One day, things blew up and a fight ensues. Only then, you knew that your boss wanted something different then what you thought. If you had earlier chose to confront him immediately and clarify things in the beginning, this would not have happened. When I say confront, that doesn't mean to aggressively foght with him. I'll share how in the next articles.

Everything is a personal attack

In Malaysia, leaders are so sensitive and egoistic. Just because your opinion is different than theirs, it's as if we want to overthrow them. Then, we are branded as the 'evil opponents'. So many high potential individuals are neglected because of this. Separate the person from the issue. We don't care about you, we just want to make things better by giving a fresh opinion. Heh, You say that Malaysian don't have creativity.We do. Just that too many of it is restrained by seniority mentality and office politics by Malaysian leaders. To them, it becomes a matter of ego and pride which they must uphold. In worst cases, the use unethical methods to silence opposition.

In student clubs it is also similar. I have a story from an ex-MPP, he made a mistake of scolding a subordinate in front of her friends. That subordinate would then have her revenge by spreading bad rumors about him and engineer his isolation from his team. This has no positive effect on the boss, the subordinate or the team. Just the pure emotion of revenge. Don't take everything personally and don't take it to heart easily. Be professional. Separate work and emotion. Aware of the emotional pressures in the team. Be forgiving.

Blame Game

When people cannot answer a question in a n argument, they will make excuses. When they can't, they start to blame each other when a problem appears. The problem might not be the person. But it's always easier to blame and push the responsibility to someone else. And the blame game continues, just like Malaysian politics. Then, the problems never gets resolved.
Stop Blaming. Control emotions. Keep it objective. Find Solutions.

There are many cultures that I see in today's politicians that I see are happening to university students. The Blame Game. Unintelligent debates. Empty propaganda mongering. Biased Arguments and etc. You are going to face the same thing in real life, why don't start practicing now. If we can have have the right attitude in solving our conflicts. Then, Malaysia would be a better place.

Be.You

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Qualities Women Despise In A Man

These are the qualities women are thought to despise, according to some survey I found:

1. He has no opinion, is just carried along by others.
2. He always has someone to blame.
3. He can never be decisive at the moment of truth.
4. He’s always giving up (never puts in the work).
5. He’s always relying on his parents somehow.
6. He keeps quiet on the train even when he’s bunched up against some weirdo.
7. Though he’s timid around other people, he only acts firm in front of me.
8. He flip-flops around with what foods he likes and dislikes.
9. He splits the cost of meals (with me) exactly, even in increments of RM0.10.
10. He asks to be treated.
11. He always whines about his work.
12. His mails are too long.
13. He does nothing but complain.
14. He checks his appearance in front of the mirror too much.
15. He uses hygiene products too much.
16. His body is frail and weak.

See that guys? You have to be opinionated, a strong mind. Small2 stuff like choosing where to eat for dinner, no need to be so strict la. But it's important that you can stand your ground in the face of conflict and disputes. Many of you avoid conflict or become too aggressive and emotional in a conflict. This is because:

You don't know your 'limit', Don't say you know it, because if you did you would handle ALL conflicts well. Read this to know why.

And also, don't give up easily, just keep trying. Don't stop. Just do it. Doubting yourselves doesn't bring you anywhere.

Don't whine and complain. Grow up. Be accountable for the choices you make. Have a positive outlook of life.

What separates successful Men (and women) is in the way they react towards:
  • Their life goals
  • Their problems and challenges in life
  • Knowledge, Education and Wisdom.
Click here for a better explanation.

Be a Man. Do the right thing!

...and...

Be.You.

Monday, October 12, 2009

How To Tell Someone You Love Them



Another random post this time. I remember posting a video titled, "How To Be The Perfect Boyfriend". but before you can become the perfect boyfriend/girlfriend you need to have one, right? But you got to express your feelings to your target right? Here's how! Just click on the pic above...

Sorry that havent updated much this week, been busy. A shift is happening in my life. Haha. Anyway...

Be.You.
and show me some love...

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Solutions To Effective Decision Working

In the previous article I shared about the limitations in effective decision making. Which are:

• Time
• Resources
• Type of Decision
• Environment


So referring to these limitations I am going to share the tools you can use to do effective decision making.

Time & Resources

Planning. Yes, planning. A good planning would give you an idea of the tine constraint that you would face. Then, you could plan things ahead and not when you are under pressure because of lack of time. Also planning in advance would help you identify the limited resources you have and the type of decisions you would have to do in advanced, so you can make the decisions now. You won't make a good decision under pressure, right? I know I have said planning as a solution many times, but this shows how important is planning. You can download a copy of my planning guide here.

Type of Decision

Like I said in my previous article, time and resources is a big limitation. So for now, I will discuss a method that decides a decision making that is suitable to the decision making in context of differences in importance and urgency in making the decision.

Decision Making Matrix

I have modified this matrix from the time management matrix to suit the context of decision making.

Important - If you don't do, then the project/work you are doing won't be complete
Urgent - If you don't do it now, you won't finish before deadline. (Some people don't want to make their own deadline, that's why their time management sucks) Or other parts of the project cannot or other people cannot finish before their deadline until you have done your part of the project/work.


Autocratic - You don't have much time. Don't be a wuss and make a decision now!
Democratic - You have time. Gather as much as accurate information as you can. Get a team consensus. There are many methods to do this. Try Google decision making or visit this website I found, here.
Delegate - You've got to trust your team. You can't do everything alone.
Forget It - Do I need to explain this?

Remember that you need ALL your team mates to agree with a decision so all of them will do the work properly. If they don't agree, they don't trust, and ultimately they won't do. However, time is your biggest enemy in getting everyone in your team agreeing to the same decision. So as a leader you must know when to be democratic and when you must be a dictator.

Be.You.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Limitations in Effective Decision Making

Like I said before in a previous article, in life the biggest limitations are time and knowledge. Even in decision making you will see the effects of these two limitations. They will manifest themselves as these limitations in effective decision making.

• Time
• Resources
• Type of Decision
• Environment


So when trying to make a decision in your team please consider these limitations before taking choosing a decision making method.


Time

When deadlines comes closer, the pressure increases. You don't have time to wait to get more information or discuss with the team. I always see leaders postponing important decisions because they are afraid to make the wrong decisions. "Tell me yes, Tell me no...But tell me now!" so that the team can go on and start making preparations.


Resources

Unfortunately, humans cannot clone an infinite number of themselves; there's only one of you in the world. And as such, that's why you have team mates. But still, you have a limited number of them. Depending on the different size of the team would require a different approach to decision making. The bigger the size, the harder it is to take consideration everybody's opinion.


Competency

It is the combination of skills, attitude and knowledge. Unfortunately, not everybody have the same level of competency. Also, you cannot simply 'transfer' competency to another person just like transferring a Microsoft word file through a thumb drive. This difference makes it hard for ideas, suggestion, and opinions hard to get through to other members. This takes time and effort. After all, we are all different in our own special way.


Type of Decisions

Differing degrees of Time, Resources available and competency makes our decision different in terms of importance and urgency. Depending on importance, a more important decision would require a more autocratic decision making by the leader.


Environment

In my previous article, I mentioned about how the work environment can influence the quality of decision making. As a leader, it is in your interest that the decision making method you use would promote work synergy, healthy working environment and etc.

Consider these before choosing a decision making style. I would share some of the methods you can use in me next article.

Be. You.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

3 Problems In Decision Making

Decision making is an important process that everyone will go through, whether in uni or in the working life. So better start learning about it now. When making a decision, it's important to get the right information as also to discuss from as many aspects as possible. This is why all opinions and healthy debate is welcomed. Unfortunately, Malaysians always try to avoid conflict and give no feed back at all. Avoiding conflict will bring a bigger problem later on, trust me. Sometimes, the debate becomes too heated, emotional and personal that it destroys the team’s synergy.

There are 3 things that cause ineffective decision making:
• The Environment
• The People
• The Decision Making Method

Environment

As you may know everything in Malaysia is very politicized. There are so many cases where good & intelligent people are disregarded because having an opposing opinion to their superior. This kind of mentality of environment cannot help in promoting information sharing and healthy debate. Debate is necessary so that we are able to access all possibilities and outcomes. A leader can create the right environment by encouraging open discussions and stressing that making the right decision is more important than saving face.

People

People are the most unpredictable factor. There are people who talk too much but don't give relevant information or solutions, and there are those who say nothing at all. Like I said earlier, you need to know as much as you can before you can make a decision. You need your team mates to help you give information. Get them into the discussion and the debate. People are sometime shy and sometimes lose focus of the debate. There are many methods to overcome this which I will prepare later on.

Decision Making Method

The problem with student leaders these days, is that they lack technical managerial skills. So the result will be they are too dictator-like and harsh on the team and would not accept any other opinion. Or the leader becomes too soft and the team have too many opinions and the leader cannot make a decision because that person is not decisive and a people pleaser.

Environment is the external factor, and the people are the internal factor. There are managerial methods to help you do decision making in the most effective manner. These methods can easily be found on the internet and also learned as easily. Unfortunately, this is not taught to student leaders. Student leaders prefer navigating through the politics of student leadership. I will share these methods in upcoming posts.

By understanding the usual problems that cause ineffective decision making, we know what to avoid when we do our decision making. The next step is to know what to do in making the right decision.

Be.You

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Solutions To Distribute Work Effectively

I'm sure all you who had experience in student projects have seen problems in dividing, allocating and delegating the jobs to your team members. If there is imbalance in distributing the work then there will be dissatisfaction in the team. Gossiping and complaining behind the team leaders back would soon follow. And that's not good right? Below are some of the things you must consider in making your work distribution as effective as possible.


Planning

In my previous article, "3 Limitations In Dividing Work Effectively" I discussed that human resource is a major constraint. It is important that:
  • Everybody knows their own work well (so they can do the work well)
  • Everybody knows each other's works (so no one will say they have more work than others)
  • Everybody knows the overall collective work that needs to be done (so they are prepared to take some additional work)
  • Everybody aware of the changes and problems that might occur throughout the project (so that they are ok with last minute changes)
The basis behind these points is further detailed in "Laws of Teamworking". You can achieve all this by doing proper planning. I have mentioned the importance of planning so many times. You can download my free planning guidebook here. I have mentioned previously the importance of having the same goal. This is not some fancy-fancy rhetoric like singing one world, one goal, 1Malaysia and etc. This has managerial significances because a team that does not work towards the same objective is not efficient and is under-utilized. That's why I stressed the importance to have ALL team members to be a part of the planning process. When EVERYBODY knows the objective CLEARLY, team members are able to align themselves and their work closer to the team's objective.

Job Description Expectation

It is important that every team member have a clear expectation of what they need to do in the team, and what other team members need to do also. It's important that they have this expectation BEFORE you start work. The reason? So that they won't suddenly complain and give excuse that they didn't know that they need to do so much work in the project. I will share with you a set of questions you must ask your team in the future. Make sure you ask these questions before the team starts working.

Job Description by Objective/Event/Process

When you want to make a team, it is most efficient to create the team with the objective to finish one event/process from start to finish, from A to Z. Organizing work according to a specific job limits that person to that job only. That won’t be good when you need to shift man power to other sections of the project if necessary. It also creates a mental barrier that prevents information sharing between departments. Also, when you give a broad objective you are telling them what is the big picture and the bottom line.

Here are some examples of department names and their objective which I made for an entrepreneurship club I founded:

Education Department: To Educate member about entrepreneurship and create education syllabus for the members
Operations Department: To create impactful and meaningful projects for the club, club’s members and the UPM community
Publicity & Promotions: To advertise and promote the club and it's projects


After this is understood clearly by the team, then you can go into the details. I would like to share with you the document I have created that contains the specific details. But right now I do not want to go so deep in that because I want to focus on basic team managerial skills.

Organize and Streamline Work

Work together with your team to identify and brainstorm ways to increase work efficiency. Like in my previous article, I mentioned about the three departments that should be one department. Read that article as a guideline and use the principles discussed to identify the limitations in the team and think of a better way to group them together.

I hope as a leader and as a team player you can distribute work in a better way.

Be.You.

3 Limitations In Dividing Work Effectively

There was once a student project that was responsible to organize a national level symposium. They divided the team as below:
Mr. E's team = to find speakers only (external)
Miss. S's team = to find sponsors (external)
Mr. X's team = find press (external)


All of these must be grouped into one department. Why? Because:
1. They need to have the same proposal to show to all externals. Which were in an on-going process throughout the project. Different Proposal = Different Expectation=A lot of Problems
2. They need to coordinate the time slot of the project to juggle allocate time slot for speakers, press and sponsors.
3. Leveraging on the combined pool of team members to average out the workload.


These things happen when a leader does not understand the issues and limitations when people work together in a team. When you are creating a team or designing an organizational structure of a project, please consider these 3 limitations when comes the time to divide and distribute the jobs.

• Human Resource
• Information Sharing
Bureaucracy

Human Resource

It is important to remember we have a limited amount of committee members on this project. Additionally, all of you are uni students, who have exams and assignments to think about. When deadlines are coming closer, more problems tend to appear and pressure is growing, you need the flexibility to allocate man power as fast and as smoothly as possible according to the needs of the project. If you designed the team or hierarchy in a very rigid way, you will have a hard time convincing a team member to accept additional work or shift priorities. That is why it is important to design a common objective for the team first than create the job description of the team. Give a general objective to the team first, then create the name and job scope of the team. Not like MTP or MPP where they think of the secretariat name first, and then they have no idea what project the secretariat needs to do.


Information Sharing

All project requires the work force to be divided so that we can focus on different aspect of the projects. However, some of these aspects are connected, interlinked and relevant to other parts of the projects. A lot of problems happen because issues are not properly communicated to all relevant parties, then, the misinformation or miscommunication would cause mistakes and lead to conflicts. And students would blame each other and back-stabbing would soon follow. Use ICT to makes sure that all team members are updated with the same information. Different information will create different outcomes. Conflicting information would create confusion and conflicts among team members.

Bureaucracy

When the hierarchy is too complex, it becomes a barrier to information sharing and communication and also a barrier to fully utilize human resource potential. Students Leadership always has so many secretariat and bureaus with fancy name but has not been impactful. One of the reasons is that these smaller organizations create a mentality that cuts them off from collaborating with other clubs or bureaus. For example, every college have their own entrepreneurship secretariat but each of them have received limited success (selling keropok and dadih is not what I define as successful). Why have none of them collaborated with other entrepreneurship clubs to capitalize on their pooled human resource and expertise? The answer is the bureaucratic mentality in Malaysians.


Ultimately, time and human resource is the underlying factors. Utilizing the most of what you have by using effective managerial principles. I will share the methods to do so in upcoming articles.

Be.You.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Student Leaders Planning Guidebook



Interesting Articles in the e-book:

  • Why students fail to plan?
  • Laws of Teamworking
  • SMART Goal Setting
  • Designing an Action Plan
  • 3 Ways to Know You Are Realistic or Not
Click Here To Download For Free

Saturday, September 26, 2009

MPP/MTP Lacks Strategic Thinking

Whether the Majlis Perwakilan Pelajar (MPP) at the University level or the Majlis Tertinngi Pelajar (MTP) at the college level, they both lack strategic thinking skills. The proof, the same issues have been going on for ages and no improvement can be seen. If the students don't see any improvement, it's enough for me to say you are not making any improvements. Imagine if you are a leader in a business, politics or in public services. Remember the problems when you were a leader in university? You will face them again. What makes you can handle them better this time in the future? But I don't blame the MPP and MTP because they are not taught to equip themselves with managrial skills. Here are some reasons this situations prevail:

Unnecessary Politics In Student Leadership

Political ideologies has no place in student politics. Students just want our food affordable, clean and healthy. Our college safe to live in and our toilets clean. Anything else is irrelevant. You can read a more detailed discussion here. Malaysia has a bad culture of politicizing everything. And when that happens, the 'talkers' will always talk too much BS about the problem, but NOTHING about the solution; which is what strategic thinking is. Creating strategies, Solving problems. This bad habit is then picked up by the young generation. Shame on you politicians.

Lack of Education Syllabus

MPP and MTP are best to be headed by experienced students and is not a place to 'learn'. By design or by negligence, these organizations do not have a structured education plan. Every time you see a student club's performance fluctuate it is because of the club's leadership. This fluctuation is a sign of an absence in the club's initiative to continuously develop leaders. There are a lot of clubs with good education plans, unfortunately none among MPPs and MTPs. No education plan means no platform for students to develop their leadership skills which include strategic thinking skills.

Lack of Foresight

Strategic thinking is basically the ability to foresee problems and formulate strategies to solve them. However, not all student leader can anticipate problem well. This comes with experience in doing challenging projects. But many students love doing lame and easy projects. You can read my classification of such students, here. Also, some student leaders are not sincere, they are just power hungry, want to show off, want to get close to ministers and etc. So 'strategic thinking' for the student clubs is not their priority, but 'strategic thinking' for themselves, yes la.

At the end of the day, student leaders must focus on developing their managerial skills. Their 'talking' skills is perfect already. I see a lot of students are confused what are the role of MPP and also they are too focused on the politics and not the solutions. Read here, where I shoot a few people, give your comments, ok?

Be.You.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Persepsi pelajar terhadap MTP/MPP E-Report


About Beyond Uni

Hi,

My name is Firdaus and I blog at beyonduni.blogspot.com

If this is the first time you came to my blog please read these two articles of mine:

Who Should Read My Blog?

How to read my blog?

I hope by reading these two articles would make you understand better about my blog and how it can help you in uni: in academics, in your co-curricular and life in general.

After this, you might want to know about the history and the vision of my blog. And also, maybe about me. You can do so by reading these post:

Why beyond uni?

About Me

Enjoy reading my blog and...

Be.You.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

How to read my blog?

Today, I want to share how you can apply what I am teaching in my blog in your life...

Threshold and Direction



Threshold
It means a point/level where a change will happen. Or read here for webster definition...

When I say you are not an entrepreneur when you're selling dadih/keropok that means that is below the level you need to do to become a successful entrepreneur. I would say you need to read books, focus on studies and focus the development of proper entrepreneur mindsets and mentalities. That is the minimum, if you do not focus on developing mindset, you're not going to be successful. Selling dadih at university is below the limit/the threshold so that means you are not making a differences for yourselves. Refer back to why entrepreneurship is needed, I am referring my threshold on the objectives of increasing economic standards for the Malays, creating jobs and attracting foreign investments. Can selling dadih do that?


Direction


I admit I am not so experienced to know what is the threshold exactly, but at least I do know to a certain extent where it lies. Even if I do not know I am experienced enough to know the 'direction' that is needed. When I'm doing the articles like Laws of Teamworking and SMART Goal Setting I am giving you a direction. I am telling you this is the way, the focus you must put effort into if you want to achieve success in your project and etc. If you aren't able to achieve it, it's okay. Better than investing your time and effort on the wrong things.

The thing is, there are people who say other people's analysis is 'general'. Fine, but how specific can you be, practically? So I wrote this as a guide to read my guide to the issues I talk about in my blog.

Use It Against Your Enemies


I know all my readers are decent good people but your lives are made miserable by those %$%^& people. Here offer you my help. Use the articles, and e-book that I have to made. When you are debating, refer back to my articles. Show them the principles, concepts and tools I made. To make it more effective, position me as some industry expert. I'm not saying that I am but maybe you can help me become one. If you think the things that I say is right, you can tell your friends about my blog. If I'm not, give me some comments to improve myself. Either way, with your help, I will ultimately become the 'industry expert'. And then you can use my articles to expose 'the talkers' of who they really are...

Be.You.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Panduan Hidup Untuk Pelajar Universiti Baru


Saya baru siapkan e-book pertama saya. Buku ini dalam format pdf. Sesuai untuk dibaca oleh semua komputer.

Baca Buku Ini Untuk:
• Menggunakan Zaman Universiti Anda Dengan Sebaiknya
• Mengenal Pasti Kelab & Persatuan Pelajar Yang Bermasalah
• Mengelakkan Aktiviti/Projek/Perniagaan yang mengeksploitasi Pelajar
• Mempelajari Cara-Cara Menyeimbangkan Masa Pelajar

Nak satu salinan? Hanya Klik Disini.

Be.You.

Friday, September 18, 2009

4 Causes of Ineffective Work Distribution

As I mentioned before, one of the elements of a team is work division. It's a tough job balancing needs of the project and the needs of your team. I will be discussing methods and techniques you can use to achieve this balance later, but before that I must share the underlying mistakes and problems that student clubs always make or face in the team.

Different expectation of work - amount, frequency, deadline, quality

Everytime someone fights in a team is because that someone is not satisfied with a team member's work. That happens because that 'someone's expectation is not communicated properly. Not long ago I had someone complaining about a team member who were always not satisfied with his work. My suggestion is to meet that unsatisfied team member and clarify what does she (the unsatisfied team member) want, what is her expectation. Normally, if this is not done, both parties will have different interpretation of what needs to be done. When this happen the conflicting views will create an argument. This is why you need to an expectation setting with your team. You must make it clear to all team members about the 4 issues below:

  • Amount of Work
  • Quality of Work
  • Deadline
  • Work Frequency
Make sure all team members are prepared to face the expected issues discussed above at the agreed magnitude as discussed in the expectation setting session. I will teach more about how to do the expectation setting and what to do if there are differing opinions in the expectation setting in later articles.


Uncommitted People

Even though with all the managerial methods that I discussed, there are always incompetent people in the team. In student clubs they are always the lazy and just for merits students. Be careful with these kind of people. They technically achieved their objective, which is to get merit and they have not much reason to contribute more in the project. The solution is to identify these kind of people in the recruitment interview and the expectation setting session. Then, using your leadership and managerial skills to motivate or pressure them to do a better work.


Different Priorities

Everyone have different objectives and as such, different priorities. Some people put their girlfriend/boyfriend before work responsibility. This is not good. You can have your dates anytime, at worst only your date gets mad at you. But in a student club, a whole project of 20 to30 people can be at risk because you did not do your work. Which one is more important? Some team members also have other responsibilities, like tests & assignments, other club's projects. These other responsibilities can affect their priorities and in turn your project. Again, expectation setting can help to identify potential problems with these people.

Constructing Proper Job Descriptions

Like I said earlier, It's a tough job balancing needs of the project and the needs of your team. A lot of leaders are not trained or knowledgeable how to assign work properly among team members. These are the kind of knowledge that MPP and MTP should be teaching their members regardless of position. Back to the topic, when assigning Job Descriptions (JD) to a team member, these are the basic 3 things you must consider:

  • Time constraint
  • Hierarchy
  • Skill sets

These are a very basic classification of the issues but would be enough for today. I will discuss in further detail later. I just wanted to point out that student clubs don't put much effort in constructing a JD and they don't see the value of taking the time to invest in constructing a proper JD.

I hope you can use these 4 points to help you identify potential problems in your team and take precautionary measures to prevent conflicts in your team.


Selamat Hari Raya, Maaf Zahir Batin and...

Be.You.
and show me some love...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

How To Be The Perfect Boyfriend

Hi,
Today is a busy week. SO a random post this time. I remember posting a video titled, "How To Be The Perfect Girlfriend". This time, it's a video for the guys. Just click the pic above to go watch vid.

Be.You.
and show me some love...

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Truth About Your CGPA Pointer

CGPA pointer is not everything and here's why:

Don't Take the System For Granted

There are a lot of book worms in university. They're only reason to exist is too study. They're mentality is "Get good pointers - Get good work - Get good life". Nothing can be further from the truth. The CGPA system is to measure your academic performance, but that does not mean the system will necessarily benefit you. You have to out do the system to be better than your peers. Never expect when you follow the system, the system will take care of you. Have you ever realised why politicians always get rich, because they abuse their position and the information they know to abuse the system. That's the ugly truth. I'm not asking you to abuse the system, I just saying don't take any system (CGPA pointers) for granted. Don't just hope getting 4 flat and your life is sure going to be OK. Do your research, prepare for risks, and don't depend everything on CGPA. Why?

CGPA Just Gets You the Interview


These days many company HR utilise a computer software to filter candidates. So if you have a high cgpa, that's good but companies don't just need cgpa. Do you think you can do interviews well? Do you think you can perform well after you get the job compared to your peers to get a promotion? Do you know the reason why they ask so many questions is so that they can analyse your mentality and personality. If you have a weak personality because you never mix-around, experience teamwork, face challenges through co-curricular; do you think they want to hire you? Quality over quantity. I told you before not take stupid jobs in your co-curricular like 'ajk kebersihan', 'ajk makanan' & etc. Some people think, "Need to learn from small-small". Wrong! I think things like that are a waste of time and employers don't value the cert. Read this article to know what you should do in co-curricular.



Co-curricular Experience Can Be Applied Anywhere


Whatever competency that you learned in co-curricular can be applied anywhere in life. Academics, work and in business. CGPA only appliess to the work field or industry that is relevant to the cert. Remember, "competency= skill + knowledge + attitude". A lot of student club say they do leadership and etc, but fail to teach you to be competent. Read here to identify these clubs. And again, small menial labourous task like 'ajk makanan', does not help comptency. Employers want competency. The leadeship and management stuff you need to learn (that a lot of student club don't teach) are the kind of methods and concepts I discuss in my blog.

I wouldn't say CGPA is useless but let me give an idea about the 'balance' between CGPA and co-curricular. Read here to know how to use the equation below:

4.00 CGPA + Great Co-curricular = The best.

You can apply at famous companies like Multi National Companies (MNCs), 'top 4' companies of your field and those famous national GLCs like Petronas and Proton etc.

4.00 CGPA + No Co-curricular = Hard to go far

If the HR people sees any weakness in your mentality and personality that can affect in work, they do not want to hire. But I'm talking about the good companies. If you want typical, not famous, not so high-paying companies; that's another story.

2.00 CGPA + Great Co-curricular = Hard Also. But...

Usually, a lot of your students leaders do a lot of co-curricular so to get close to Datuks and Menteris. Some are lucky and achieve something, but not all. I don't like this strategy. However, even if u get CGPA is low, you would already have experience to apply in the future like starting your own business, maybe? As long the co-curricular you did is not those shitty work la.

2.00 CGPA + No Co-curricular = Very Bad.

I have no idea what you are doing in Uni.

The Balance?


At least get 2nd upper class for your degree pointer. And the strategy you should have with your co-curricular is quality over quantity. Read here how to identify them.

At the end of the day you must realise your degree cert is not a ticket that gets you a job, it's just one 'ingredient' to get the job. If you don't have all the 'ingredients', you won't get the job.

Be.You.
and show me some love ;)

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