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Finnish lumberjack of Yhtyneet Paperitehtaa in...

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Stephen Covey tells the story of a man who was walking through a forest when he came across a frustrated lumberjack.

The lumberjack was trying to cut down a tree with and was swearing and cursing as he laboured in vain.

“What’s the problem?”  The man asked.

“My saw’s blunt and won’t cut the tree properly.”  The lumberjack responded.

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One of the underestimated elements of job-hunting is making a follow-up call in the days after an interview.

Whether or not you get the job is irrelevant, there is significant value either way. 

Making that call can be scary, but hopefully you will see such value in doing so that you begin to make this a part of your normal routine after an interview.

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Ever since Moses came down from Mt Sinai with the original 10 commandments in the Old Testament, people have had a fascination with top 10 lists.

As I’ve been musing on leadership principles recently, I’ve come up with my own 10 commandments of leadership. 

Of course, leadership is more complex and challenging than what you can fit into a list of 10 principles, but I hope that this is a good place to start that will get you thinking about how you can further develop your leadership capability.

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“The quickest way to become an old dog is to stop learning new tricks.”  This is a great quote from John Rooney that summarises the need to continue to learn throughout your life.

Living in the Knowledge Age as we are, it is more important than ever to focus on continuing to develop and grow our minds, equipping us for a great career and more fulfilling life.  Tony Robbins calls it constant and never-ending improvement, describing this process as critical for any successful person.

People who are focussed upon life-long learning equip themselves better for their career, are more creative, are better problem solvers and feel more able to deal with some of the challenges that life presents.

Sadly, over the years I’ve come across many people who think that it’s too late and they can’t learn anything else.  Whether it’s through low self-esteem, habitual thinking or just laziness, I want to assure you that a life of learning is available for everyone.

Here are a few simple tips that I hope are of assistance.

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I’m sure that we’ve all been to seminars and workshops when you’ve reflected a couple of weeks later and realised that nothing’s changed.  The experience was a good one, the facilitators and presenters were excellent, you took notes and thought that you had learned something, but in the end, you went back to doing things the same old way.

I recently had the great privilege of sitting in a 5 hour workshop that was facilitated by the excellent Buck Rogers from Church Resource Ministries (CRM).

In this workshop, while Buck was facilitating he was also giving some excellent tips on how to facilitate similar workshops and one of his best tips was how to set up a personal plan so that attenders walk away with something tangible that they can action.

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My thanks to Paulo Coelho for this wonderful story with some excellent points. 

A boy was watching his grandmother write a letter.

At one point he asked,  “Are you writing a story about what we’ve done?  Is it a story about me?”

His grandmother stopped writing her letter and said to her grandson: “I am writing about you, actually, but more important than the words is the pencil I’m using. I hope you will be like this pencil when you grow up.”

Intrigued, the boy looked at the pencil. It didn’t seem very special. “But it’s just like any other pencil I’ve ever seen!”

“That depends on how you look at things. It has five qualities which, if you manage to hang on to, will make you a person who is always at peace with the world.”

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Described as “America’s foremost business philosopher”, Jim Rohn was an entrepreneur, writer and motivational speaker who was the mentor of Tony Robbins and had a significant influence on the personal development industry before passing away in 2009.

I’ve discussed his “Ant Philosophy” in a previous post and today wanted to share with you some great quotes from him.

Over the course of his 40+ year career, Jim came up with many terrific quotes that aren’t just inspirational, but thought-provoking and challenging as well.

I’ve chosen five of his best for this post, although there were many more that I could have used.

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Harry Kewell gets his marching orders

In the 2010 World Cup the Australian newspapers were full of articles about the injustices handed out to the Socceroos at the hands of the referees.

Whilst there was little doubt that the Australians didn’t have much luck when it came to the refereeing decisions, to completely blame the man with the whistle for the situation is misleading and disempowering.

There are times in life when decisions go against us as well and we can easily fall into the trap of blaming external circumstances for our current situation.  Don’t fall for it!

Here are a few key life lessons that we can learn from the Socceroos’ predicament.

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photo from flickr


Confucius once said, “I hear and I forget.  I see and I remember.  I do and I understand.”  

It’s a terrific saying and one that I have heard on many occasions, but there is another stage again that can take your learning to a whole new level and my five year old son reminded me of this recently.  

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