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Most people live their life as reaction to events that happen around them, and very few create events and define how they will live their Lives...

ideas group blog

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I have received a call last week from one of my clients, who for internal reasons had to cancel one of the biggest contracts we have signed this year. To tell you that I wasn’t deceived would be lying; The news could have ruined my whole day, week or even month because of the magnitude of such contract. However as I am committed to have a high EIQ (emotional intelligence quotient), I had to analyze the choices I had, so I quickly drew the below mindmap (click to enlarge).

As you can see, by just changing my paradigm from deception to choices, a multitude of options started flowing and I was suddenly enveloped with a warm feeling of happiness. It is strange and weird but in the nicest possible way.

So I continued my analysis and tried to come up with computer and IT analogies; when we delete files in our computers we are just making space for another file, the same goes in our lives; when we lose something we are just making space for something bigger.

A lost opportunity = more focus on a bigger one
A lost job = a chance for doing what you love
A lost family member = more love for other family members, or more focus on continuing what the lost one has started
A lost friendship = opportunities for a better one

And the list goes on...

A women in Lebanon has lost her son in a water sports accident, and after grieving him for a while she felt that her life had stopped; You just can imagine how hard it is to loose a child. But one day she woke up and asked herself the following question: What is the reason that my son was taken away from me at a young age? What is the message behind it? How can I use this incident to serve others?

A week later she has started a foundation with a purpose of making parents aware of the dangers of inattention when it comes to their children. So going back to her choices, she had two choices; either grieve her child for the rest of her life, or help thousands of other households save their children. With the latter choice she now feels that her son’s decease was a rebirth for a thousand more child.

“When you lose something, you are just making space for something bigger”

So if you just think about a loss as a free space, you will not get stuck in the past and will start generating opportunities for the future. It is all about using your energy- any kind of energy; negative or positive - and turning it into choices that will get you closer to your goals.

Posted By Ideas Group at
01:18 - AM
Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The world that we live in presents enough challenges for de-motivating the most positive people on earth. On the other hand, people seek comfort when they start sharing their problems with others; and some take that comfort to the next level and will find a need for complaining. As one of my friends puts it: “As human beings, we love to be victimized. Being victimized is perhaps the best way to run away from our responsibilities.

This implication of being victimized spreads across all aspects of life: Relationships, education, health and most importantly careers.

Looking at the career and professional aspect, it is really annoying to be around people that whine and moan every day at work; sometimes this excessive negativity will drag others into it and will have a slumping effect on performance.

So how do we stop those people from complaining and how do we lift our moods if we think that we are in an awful situation.

First of all, Start by auditing your life: List the good things that are happening in your life and the bad things that you are exposed to and ask yourself those two simple questions: 1) How can I increase the good things? 2) What can I do specifically to change each of the bad things on my list?

Second, Don’t be positive: Yes you are reading correctly. Being positive and wishing for good things to happen is like staying at home without contacting anyone and waiting for Microsoft to ask you to become one of their Vice Presidents. Instead of being merely positive, have a Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) and draw plans, while acknowledging that you will face some negative challenges. So have a PMA and identify what might go wrong so you will be able to pro-act and not re-act.

That brings us to the third point which is Be Proactive. As Dr. Stephen Covey puts it in his habit 1: “Take responsibility for your life”. If you cannot see a change make the change, if things are not going the way you plan, you have two options: sit down and watch things go terribly wrong or take control of the situation and ask yourself how can you change the situation. The how questions open a lot of doors and will get you closer to your desired situation.

The choice is yours; take the driver’s seat and lead your life to your own victory or complain while watching other people climb the peaks of success.

Posted By Ideas Group at
03:35 - AM
Thursday, April 29, 2010

According to a survey done by ideas group on 60 companies in the Middle East, 85% of the workforce conflict stems out of miscommunication.

The study was conducted across companies in different industries: Government, FMCG, Aviation, Industrial, Banking and Finance Telecom and IT, in 11 countries in the following cities: Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, Dammam, Riyadh, Kuwait City, Doha, Muscat, Damascus, Amman, Manama, Cairo, Casablanca and Beirut.

When working in virtual teams or working across the region, miscommunication is magnified by the lack of proper writing skills, whether in emails, memos, instant messaging (IM) or even blogs and other social media.

So to simplify things for you, we came up with this checklist of 9 items to look at before sending emails:

  • Simplify your message: In Business it is not about literature or chic fancy words, the more simple your message is, the less misunderstanding it generates. So keep your sentences short and straight to the point.
  • Use bullet points: People like to see a summary of your ideas, so if you put your main ideas into bullets, it will help the reader scan quickly through it and this will speed up the communication process.
  • Use punctuation in the right place: Each punctuation has a meaning a question mark (?) is to ask a question, an exclamation mark as the Meriam-Webster Dictionary puts it “ is used to indicate forceful utterance or strong feeling”. So ending a sentence with an exclamation mark is like a warning sign…two exclamation marks are two warning signs.
  • Never write full sentences in CAPS: Capital letters or “caps” are a sign of shouting or yelling, so unless you want to yell at your reader do not write in caps.
  • Use calm colors: Using red fonts when writing emails also indicates anger, so whenever it is possible try to use blue or green instead for highlighting.
  • Make sure your email has a subject: Sending an email without a subject can be frustrating for people who use the search function of their inboxes, it helps the reader understand the email content.
  • If you send an email at 1 am then what you are really saying to the reader is : "you can call me anytime you want" Respecting Work Life Balance is extremely important. Unless it is urgent don't send emails after working hours, you can always schedule to send later.
  • Avoid the URGENT and (!)High importance/priority signs: Some people are just used to the habit of sending all their emails with HIGH IMPORTANCE or HIGH PRIORITY; So when they have an issue with a real high importance, how will they let their readers know that this one is really important? I once received one of those with an email that said Happy Holidays. This will only stress the reader.
  • And finally, read the email before sending it; we discover a lot of mistakes just by reading it again. If it is an email going to important person, try to get a colleague to read it as well; some sentences might make sense to you but not to the reader.
Posted By Ideas Group at
04:45 - AM
Experimental Learning | ideas groupideas group is a global learning and human capital development firm specialized in leadership, team development and learning business process outsourcing BPO. We help our clients become high performance organizations and foster a sustainable growth.