Facebook a force for good or bad

Social media is a great tool to connect and remain connected with your friends and love ones. It is also a great source of current events. Social media, specifically Facebook or FB, has become part of our daily lives. We use it to keep tabs on what our friends and relatives are up to. We post events, thoughts and photos to share with our network. One fascinating benefit of using Facebook is being able to find and reach out to long lost classmates, colleagues and childhood friends. Friends that would be impossible to find if not for Facebook.

We check our Facebook account before we go to bed. For some of us, the first thing we pick-up after we wake-up is our smartphone to check the latest updates on FB. We have a nice dinner with friends and half the people around the table are hunched over swiping their FB account.

Like any other tool, FB can be good and bad for us. Bad, if used more than it should be. Too much use of FB can stifle social skills. When I was younger, my brothers and I used to run out of the house to get together with other kids in the neighborhood. This helped develop a few things; our social skills and ability to read body language, our communication skills, our body through physical activities with other kids. Today, the digital world has lessened the need for kids to physically interact with one another. I have encountered people in their 20’s that are socially awkward. They do not know how to carry themselves or interact with others.

Kids have less physical activities than before. Instead of being out of the house playing physical sports, they are stuck in front of iPads or big screen TV’s playing video games. The only muscle they develop are their fingers.

FB is also used as a sounding board for negative people that live to rant and complain. It is also used to make some people’s lives look more glamourous and exciting than it is. A huge percentage of photos are selfies. Some users are even obsessed over how many likes their selfies draw.

Facebook is neither good or bad. It’s simply a medium for expression and sharing. Like any tool, it is how we use it that makes it either good or bad.

You want to share a memorable moment? Go ahead and share the moment with your friends and love ones. I do this all the time. Just be conscious if your use of FB has become an addiction or obsession.

How can you tell if you are addicted? If Facebook is the first thing you regularly check when you wake up in the morning then there is a problem. If you get upset when your selfie does not get huge ‘likes’ then definitely something is wrong. If you constantly rant on Facebook about everything that irks you then you might need to abstain from logging in for a while.

Facebook is very useful if used properly. Use it properly.

Millennials are a necessary workforce

We have no other talent pool to take from. We have no other pool to select successors for key positions in your company. In the next few years, we will only have the Millennial pool to pick and develop talent from.

When it comes to Generation Y or Millennials, we have three choices:
1. We Villainize them. We choose to brand them as the corporate enemy refusing or incapable of doing things our way.
2. We Tolerate them. We choose to treat them as a necessary evil.
3. We Engage them. We adjust and develop them to be future leaders and managers.

Frankly, if we were to make sure that our company survives and even thrives after the Baby Boomers and Gen-X have left, then we only have option #3.

It is not easy and that is exactly why we developed a management development program called ‘Understanding and Managing Millennials”. The program, designed for supervisors and managers, is a combination of a one day classroom lecture with a 30 day on the job assignment and mentoring.

If your company has such Millennial challenges, then please have your assistant reach out to us. We will be more than happy to drop by and discuss the matter with you.

We also encourage you to read the article below.

11 Tips for Managing Millennials BY SUSAN M. HEATHFIELD

The millennials joining your workforce now are employees born between 1980 and 2000, or 1981 and 1999, depending on the source. Unlike the Gen-Xers and the Baby Boomers, the Millennials have developed work characteristics and tendencies from doting parents, structured lives, and contact with diverse people.

Millennials are used to working in teams and want to make friends with people at work. Millennial employees work well with diverse coworkers.

They grew up in an environment in which diverse children were the norm.

Millennials have a can-do attitude about tasks at work and look for feedback about how they are doing frequently—even daily and certainly weekly. Millennials want a variety of tasks and expect that they will accomplish every one of them. Positive and confident, millennials are ready to take on the world.

They seek leadership, and even structure, from their older and managerial coworkers, but expect that you will draw out and respect their ideas. Millennials seek a challenge and do not want to experience boredom. Used to balancing many activities such as teams, friends, and philanthropic activities, millennials want flexibility in scheduling and a life away from work.

Millennials need to see where their career is going and they want to know exactly what they need to do to get there. Millennials await their next challenge—and there better be a next challenge.

Millennials are the most connected generation in history and they will network right out of their current workplace if these diverse needs are not met. Computer experts, millennials are connected all over the world by email, instant messages, text messages, and the internet. Job searching, business contacts, and friends are just a couple of key taps away.

Know this because it really matters to millennials.

11 Tips for Millennial Management

1. Provide structure. Reports have monthly due dates. Jobs have fairly regular hours. Certain activities are scheduled every day. Meetings have agendas and minutes. Goals are clearly stated and progress is assessed. Define assignments and success factors. Millennials don’t need to be boxed in but they do need banks on their pond.

2. Provide leadership and guidance. Millennials want to look up to you, learn from you, and receive daily feedback from you. They want in on the whole picture and to know the scoop. Plan to spend a lot of time teaching and coaching and be aware of this commitment to millennials when you hire them. They deserve and want your very best investment of time in their success.

3. Encourage the millennial’s self-assuredness, “can-do” attitude, and positive personal self-image. Millennials are ready to take on the world. Their parents told them they can do it—and they can. Encourage—don’t squash them or contain them. They’re always looking to provide input and ideas. Encourage them to voice their thoughts and opinions.

4. Take advantage of the millennial’s comfort level with teams. Encourage them to join teams and provide a work environment that stresses teamwork. They are used to working in groups and teams. In contrast to the lone ranger attitude of earlier generations, millennials actually believe a team can accomplish more and better—they’ve experienced team success. Not just related to age, watch who joins the volleyball match at the company picnic. Millennials gather in groups and play on teams; you can also mentor, coach, and train your millennials as a team.

5. Listen to the millennial employee. Your millennial employees are used to loving parents who have scheduled their lives around the activities and events of their children. These young adults have ideas and opinions and don’t take kindly to having their thoughts ignored. After all, they had the best listening, the most child-centric audience in history.

6. Millennial employees are up for a challenge and change. Boring is bad. They seek ever-changing tasks within their work. What’s happening next is their mantra. Don’t bore them, ignore them, or trivialize their contribution.

7. Millennial employees are multi-taskers on a scale you’ve never seen before. Multiple tasks don’t phase them. Talk on the phone while doing email and answering multiple instant messages—yes! This is a way of life. In fact, without many different tasks and goals to pursue within the week, the millennials will likely experience boredom.

8. Take advantage of your millennial employee’s computer, cell phone, and electronic literacy. Are you a Boomer or even an early Gen-Xer? The electronic capabilities of these employees are amazing. You have a salesman in China? How’s the trip going? Old timers call and leave a message in his hotel room. Or, you can have your millennial text message him in his meeting for an immediate response. The world is wide, if not yet deep, for your millennial employees.

9. Capitalize on the millennial’s affinity for networking. Not just comfortable with teams and group activities, your millennial employee likes to network around the world electronically. Keep this in mind because they are able to post their resume electronically as well on web job boards viewed by millions of employers. They intermingle on sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn and rate your company at Glassdoor.com. Sought after employees, they are loyal, but they keep their options open—always.

10. Provide a life-work balanced workplace. Your millennials are used to cramming their lives with multiple activities. They may play on sports teams, walk for multiple causes, spend time as fans at company sports leagues, and spend lots of time with family and friends. They work hard, but they are not into the sixty hour work weeks defined by the Baby Boomers. Home, family, spending time with the children and families, are priorities. Don’t lose sight of this. Balance and multiple activities are important to these millennial employees. Ignore this at your peril.

11. Provide a fun, employee-centered workplace. Millennials want to enjoy their work. They want to enjoy their workplace. They want to make friends in their workplace. Worry if your millennial employees aren’t laughing, going out with workplace friends for lunch, and helping plan the next company event or committee. Help your long-term employees make room for the millennials.
By internet research counts, 75,000,000 millennials are joining the workforce—in 2015 they became the majority of your workers. These are desirable employees. Make your millennial employees happy in a fun, yet structured setting, and you are building the foundation for the superior workforce you desire. You are developing the workforce of your future.

As always, when characterizing a particular group of employees based on age, or any other special characteristic, some employees will fit this description; some employees will fit a part of this description; some employees will not fit this description at all.

Yet, if you heed these tips, you will steer your organization forward, more times than not, with a positive approach to managing your millennial employees.


Separating Personal feeling from work

I guess, here in the Philippines, employees really find it difficult to separate their personal feelings from work. You hear stories about managers personally reacting to their staff. Once you are out of favor from your manager, you suddenly find yourself at the sideline of the career track watching colleagues pass by you.

It also works both ways. When you dislike your manager, you will find yourself internally disagreeing with everything he wants done. Of course, to his face, you agree to his instructions only to find your motivation drop as you try and execute his wishes.

We Filipinos, are quick to mix our personal and work life. When I was still working back here in Far East Bank and Trust, I thought that this way of work was simply the norm. I did not know at the time that there is a better approach to working. I did not know what I did not know.

That was my mind set until I was fortunate enough to work for the largest commercial Bank in the Middle East, The National Commercial Bank. I was also fortunate enough to report to western expats; British, American and even Swiss Managers. It was at that time I realized you can separate both work and personal feelings. I realized that separating the two produces a better working environment.

I remember reporting to a career executive from Barclays Bank, Mr. Dave Jones. It was under his management that I learned a lot about true professional management.

There was an instance, I could never forget, when one of my managers came to me for help. Abdullah’s mother was in the hospital due to a terrible illness. Due of her extensive hospital and medical needs, Abdullahs HMO coverage had been fully used up.

Abdullah came to my office seeking for a personal loan on top of his existing personal loan. The Bank had a policy against ‘top-up’ loans. To ensure that personal loans are properly paid up and employees don’t get buried under a ton of personal loans, a policy was released disallowing top-up loans.

However, should a Department head (me) and a Division head (Dave) approve the top-up loan, HR will process it.

Arabs like Filipinos, are very close to parents. I could relate to what Abdullah was going through. I decided to sign the request. Of course, Dave needed to countersign as well to make it official.

I walked into Dave’s office so confident that he would also sign off on the request. After all, Dave also has a mother I assumed. I sat down on the chair beside his office meeting table. Dave stood up and walked over. I handed him the request and explained the situation. After reading it in silence for a few minutes, he placed the request down on the meeting table. He took off his reading glasses and looked at me. One word came out of his mouth ‘no’.

I was surprised and asked ‘Sorry Dave, no? We cannot grant Adbdullahs top-up request?’ Dave said that what Abdullah was going through is very unfortunate. However, he cannot grant the request. He explained further that breaking policy is the biggest cause of demotivation in a company. People will talk and say, ‘how come his requested got approved and mine was not’. Employees will think there is favoritism. That is always counterproductive.

Dave said that just because we should not break policy (work) it does not mean we cannot help. He pulls out SR2,000 or P22,000 and puts inside a brown envelop (personal). Dave instructs me to pass the envelope around and raise money for Abdullahs mother.

We really need to be observant on separating personal feelings from work. Dave mentioned several times, throughout the years I was reporting to him, that he may not like someone personally but it does not mean he will not work with him.

You don’t have to bring your colleague out for coffee or drinks after work but if you need to work with him/her then you work with him/her. Period.

Separate personal and work life. Your day will be much better for it.