August 24, 2012

Are You In It For The Money?

In August 2008 Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival in August 2009 for 21 nights. He won the bet!

Work:

An activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a result.
A means of earning income.
The place where one is employed.

Not one of the definitions for work uses the word pleasure, enjoyment, or fun, but work does have its compensations: the money you earn, the friends you meet, the office parties, the money, the holidays, the money, free stationery, the office affairs (steady), the money, and of course the money.

However with an average working week of 44 hours here in the UK (40 in the rest of Europe, except for Greece) means in a lifetime you will spend 10 years and 8 months working round the clock. Work is second only to sleep (26.3 years) in taking a big chunk of your time. But hey in a lifetime you will have 3 years and 2 months of holidays – although unfortunately half of those would have been taken when you were at school!

So my question to you is this wherever you are in your life have you achieved what you want out of work, or is there something more?

What would happen if you did something different in work today?  What if you took a small risk, suggested a new way of doing things to the boss, made a cold call?  Or perhaps enrolled yourself on a course so you wouldn’t have to be in this stupid job in the first place, or perhaps you just need a holiday…

Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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  • Filed under: Blog Posts — marchogan @ 10:08 am
August 23, 2012

New Feedback

In August 2008 Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival in August 2009 for 21 nights. He won the bet!

Some New feedback:

“Our client, Omnitel Lithuania was looking for two in one – an inspiring business speaker and  an entertainer. Marc fulfilled this brief 100%. We really enjoyed his funny business presentation.

Arnoldas Rogoznyj – Managing Director, LOGIN Conferences

Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

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  • Filed under: Blog Posts — marchogan @ 10:13 am
August 20, 2012

Sustaining MOmentum

In August 2008 Marc Hogan was bet £1 that he couldn’t become a stand up comic in less than 12 months and perform a one man comedy show at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival in August 2009 for 21 nights. He won the bet!

On August 12th eighty thousand people roar in a Stadium near Newham. After ten agonising minutes the Somali-born British athlete Mo Farah makes a break for it.  Finally in the penultimate lap Mo Farah decides to sprint home to take the Gold in the 5,000m. In those last few minutes there was not a man, woman or child watching who was not out of their seats practically running that race beside him. An amazing win for a man who just days earlier gave it his all to win 10,000m race.

Mo Farah won his first major gold medal at the age of 18 at the 2001 European Athletics Junior Championships in the 5000 metres. Eleven years later at the age of 29 Mo Farah is a double Olympic champion.  He got to the pinnacle of his career even 4 years after he was knocked out of the 2008 Olympic 5000m before the final.

How does a person like Mo keep up this level of commitment and momentum to keep striving forward, how did he overcome that setback? I suppose if you’ve been running since the age of 13 you have a huge amount of self-motivation and then there is the ultimate prize in athletics an Olympic Gold, but is that too simplistic? Is there a way we as individuals, employees, managers and leaders can maintain momentum and keep striving forward?

“Throughout my athletics career, the overall goal was always to be a better athlete than I was at the moment – whether next week, next month or next year. The improvement was the goal. The medal was simply the ultimate reward for achieving that goal.”
Sebastian Coe – middle-distance runner and two-time Olympic gold medal winner.

It seems to me that Sebastian Coe’s goals were very clear and his feedback on a day-to-day basis was almost immediate. Each day he and his coach would have goals, plans and schedules and would know how his running times compared to these goals.  Instant feedback – how many of us have (or give) instant feedback in our jobs?

As managers of people, can we take a similar approach? Most companies have 6 monthly or yearly appraisals.  What if you met more frequently with your people, what would happen if you looked at their goals every 2 months and made readjustments as necessary?

This kind of approach was taken up by the Swedish state owned Green cargo logistics and shipping company and within 2 years they became profitable for the first time in 125 years.  Their executives cite these regular feedback meetings as a key reason.

But what if you’ve got to manage people who have mundane, low autonomy jobs?  Amy Wrzesniewski and Jane Dutton two business school professors (from Yale and the University of Michigan) study of hospital cleaners, nurses, and hairdressers might shed some light here. They found that when some members of the cleaning staff at hospitals, instead of simply doing the minimum their job required, took on new tasks, whether it was just chatting with patients to helping make nurses jobs go more smoothly, this led to a marked increase in their job satisfaction and boosted their views of their skills.

The thing is we all can’t be Olympians.  Many of us have jobs that can be difficult and even occasionally boring, but there is not a doubt in my mind that Olympians do not find training boring, hard work, exhausting and frustrating.  Planning for an Olympic medal four years in the future might not be enough to motivate someone to keep up that level of hard work.  Perhaps finding ways of training that are interesting and fun some of the time and getting feedback and learning from it on a regular basis is a way to reach those end goals, whatever they may be.

So while you’re reflecting on the brilliance of all the Olympians, there might be something you can take from their experiences.

I for one am now looking forward to the Paralympics – now they really are superhuman!

Click here to watch Marc’s showreel. If you would like to find out more about Marc, visit www.marchoganlive.com or to book him for a speaking event please contact your favourite speaker bureau.

 

Follow Marc_Hogan on Twitter