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Name of author Rick Baker, P.Eng.

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7 Ways to Turn Problems into Opportunities

by Rick Baker
On Apr 8, 2010
In his book ‘How to Position Yourself for Success’, Nido Qubein provides a summary of 7 ways to turn problems into opportunities.
7 Ways to Turn Problems into Opportunities
  1. Expect Problems...and be willing to tackle them head on
  2. Plan Solutions for Problems in Advance...so you are confident when they arrive
  3. Focus on Fixing the Problem not on Fixing the Blame
  4. Make sure you understand the Problem before you start to work on fixing it; ensure you are fixing the problem and not just a symptom
  5. Formulate several possible solutions to the problem and examine them
  6. Choose a solution and act
  7. Turn you back on the problem and face your next challenge 
This meshes well with P=2S+O©.
For every Problem we should be able to come up with at least 2 Solutions. And, we should keep our eyes and ears open for great Opportunities, which often are hiding under Problems.
[a link to the first in a series of P=2S+O blogs]
Several of Nido Qubein’s thoughts about problems resonate with me.
A couple of examples:
  • We should not avoid problems. We should face them with courage and confidence [two of our Corporate Values]. And, even better we should expect problems and plan their solutions in advance. We can use the P=2S+O template to help us sort out our thoughts and create our plans. [download P=2S+O template]
  • We should think of many solutions then compare them. In the past, I have been happy to see people present to me two solutions under the P=2S+O process. I have been reluctant to press for more than 2 solutions. I’m going to give that more thought.
More on problems, solutions, & P=2S+O© in future blogs…

Some Ideas About Optimism

by Rick Baker
On Mar 25, 2010
We all know when people say “That glass is half full” they are optimists.
But, how else can we spot them?
Does a person’s communication give us clues?
According to Susan C. Vaughan M.D. the author of ‘Half Full Half Empty, Understanding the Psychological Roots of Optimism’, we can identify optimists through the following 2 characteristics.
Dr. Vaughan says we can identify optimists two ways:
  1. They exhibit a specific attributional style: when they experience successes they tend to take more credit than they deserve and when they experience failures they tend to blame others or unfavourable  circumstances.
  2. They make downward comparisons. For example,  they think or say things like “I am sure glad I am not so and so” [some less fortunate person]. Apparently, the Dalai Lama does this.
According to Susan Vaughan, when we see/listen to optimists we perceive them to be people who inflate their own ‘worth’, fail to give credit to others when such credit is due, and fail to accept responsibility for their failures.  And, optimists sustain their positive self-image by feeling good about being better than others.
Isn’t that just a bit surprising.
Regardless, we can use this to bolster an argument supporting realism…or at least an argument in favour of optimism tempered by realism.
Perhaps the above 2 ‘tests’ could be altered as follows…
Here are two ways to identify realistic-optimists:
  1. They enjoy and celebrate their successes but don’t reduce the role played by others or ignore the fact fortunate circumstances [or luck] also contribute to success [some of the time].
  2. They express appreciation for their good fortune…but keep their downward comparisons to themselves.
PS:  here’s a link to another thought about optimism-pessimism…from a prior blog.
More about P=2S+O and how to  be more optimistic in future blogs…


Optimism & Pessimism | Attitude: Creating Positive Attitude

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