Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 27th 2014 Contents Avoid these
Confidence is an expectation of a positive outcome. It is
not a personality trait; it is an assessment of a situation that
sparks motivation. It s not confidence itself that produces suc-
cess; it s the investment and the effort. To muster the confidence
to meet your goals, avoid these common traps:
Goals that are too big or too distant. Leaders often like to
say they want to tackle BHAGs - "big, hairy, audacious goals."
But having only enormous goals can actually undermine con-
fidence. Confidence comes from small wins that occur repeat-
edly, with each small step moving you closer to the big goal.
Blaming someone else. Confidence rests on taking respon-
sibility for one s own behavior. Even in difficult circumstances,
we have choices about how to respond to adversity. When the
blame game is carried out within companies, everyone loses
confidence, including external stakeholders. Confidence is the
art of moving on.
(Source: "Overcome the Eight Barriers to Confidence" by Ros-
abeth Moss Kanter.)
Listen more actively
Active listening, combined with trying to understand others
perspectives and points of view, is the most effective form of
listening. It can help you get the best from your employees;
and propel you to a class of your own as a leader. To listen
Recognise verbal and nonverbal cues, such as tone, facial
expressions and other body language. Pay attention to what
others are not saying, and probe a bit deeper: "You seem
excited (happy, upset .), and I d like to hear more about your
Assure others that you ve heard what they have to say, and
encourage ongoing communication with appropriate replies
such as verbal acknowledgements, clarifying questions or par-
aphrasing, as well as non-verbal behaviors such as facial
expressions, eye contact and head nods.
To show others that you ll remember what they said, sum-
marize key messages at the end of your conversation.
(Source: "Three Ways Leaders Can Listen with More Empathy"
by Christine M Riordan.)
Listen to your customers
especially when they disagree
When you re faced with a decision that s going to make
some customers angry no matter what you choose, it s hard
to know which voices to listen to, or whether to listen at all.
But there is no more valuable time to listen to your customers
than when they disagree.
Figure out which groups of customers feel which way. If
you learn that some customers are alienated by your decision
but others are prepared to pay richly for it, you can at least
make an educated decision. If you end up making a decision
that you know will make one set of customers unhappy, look
for opportunities to change their minds.
Whichever consumer group you end up siding with, equip
your employees (including your social media community man-
agers) with the information and the tools they need to answer
people s questions and address opposition to your decision.
(Source: "Listening to Your Customers When Your Customers
Disagree" by Alexandra Samuel.)
Assess 'network fit' when
hiring new leaders
Research suggests that outside hires at the C-suite level
take twice as long to ramp up - and fail at a much higher rate
- than leaders promoted from within. If your organisation is
looking to hire a C-suite leader, change your hiring criteria.
Focus not just on skills or background but on network fit -
how well the potential hire will fit with the way his or her
new colleagues work. Ask your in-house recruiters to take
responsibility for network fit. In the rush to fill open positions,
in-house recruiting departments may not incorporate their
knowledge of how existing teams work in making final selection
decisions. But unlike outside recruiting firms, your in-house
team knows their working environment well enough to pick
the best executive to lead the business.
(Source: "For Senior Leaders, Fit Matters More than Skill"
by Jean Martin.)
@2014 Harvard Business School Publishing Corp. Dis-
tributed by the New York Times Syndicate
BG16 | COMMENTARY
BUSINESS GUARDIAN www.guardian.co.tt MARCH 2014 • WEEK FOUR
Vacancy for Chief Marketing Officer
The successful applicant will be required to:
• Effectively manage marketing thrust mainly into international market
• Collect, analyse and competently interpret market data
• Play key role in product costing and sales margins
• Develop and manage professional staff
• Set and implement departmental goals and strategies
Candidates should possess:
• First Degree in Business Administration, International Marketing,
Chemistry or related Science field
• 10 years or more experience in Marketing/Sales in the energy industry at
• Excellent knowledge of energy sector international marketing strategies
• Excellent inter-personnel and communication skills
• Excellent negotiating and problem solving skills
With respect to the stated requirements, the candidate must possess an accept-
able combination of qualifications/experience. Relevant post graduate qualifi-
cations would be an asset. Competitive compensation package is being offered.
Unsuitable applicants will not be acknowledged.
Please send applications to:
Ventrin Petroleum Company Limited
Attention: Manager HR/IR
Point Lisas Industrial Estate
P.O. Bag 996,
Trinidad & Tobago
Or via email to reynukar.seeboo@ventrinpetroleum .com
Deadline for submission of applications Monday April 21, 2014 0327024
TIPS & TALKING POINTS
The breakfast of champions: no longer a champion itself?
1%: It's still a thrill and an honor for Olympics athletes to appear on the
Wheaties box, but their images apparently aren't doing much to sell the
cereal: The 91-year-old brand is lagging behind competitors, with a falling
market share that's now barely 1 per cent, according to The Wall Street Journal. Com-
pare that with another General Mills brand, Cheerios, which has a 12 per cent share.
Some 474 athletes have appeared on the Wheaties box, starting with Lou Gehrig in
1934; the most recent are winter Olympians Mikaela Shiffrin and Sage Kotsenburg.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal.)
Craigslist saved consumers a lot of money while crippling
$5billion: Craigslist, the online-ad site, saved the placers of classified adver-
tisements US$5 billion from 2000 through 2007, according to an analy-
sis by Robert Seamans of New York University and Feng Zhu of Harvard
Business School. It also had a profound impact on US local newspapers, siphoning off
classified advertisers and leading to decreased classified-ad rates, increased subscrip-
tion prices, reduced circulation and declines in display advertising. It also set up a con-
sumer expectation that classified advertising would be free.
(Source: Management Science.)
Reporters compare ride-sharing apps to taxis
20%more: To compare ride-sharing services with one another and
with taxis, Wall Street Journal reporters used UberX, Lyft, Sidecar
and cabs to get to work for a week in Boston, Chicago, Los Ange-
les, New York, San Francisco and Washington, DC. Over the course of more than 30
rides, prices on UberX averaged about 20 per cent more than taxi fare, in part because
of "surge" pricing during rush hours. Lyft came in second, costing a little more than
taxis. Sidecar cost about 10 per cent less than taxis. Cabs were fastest at getting pas-
sengers to their destinations, followed by UberX drivers. Sidecar and Lyft drivers took
about 20 per cent longer than cabbies.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal.)
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