Back in the swing of things? Lazy days on the beach, late nights and even later mornings a thing of the past. Those of you who wrote a list of New Year’s resolutions have probably already consigned it to the bin as reality and disillusionment set in. With this our first e–letter of the year we aim to rekindle your enthusiasm and inspire you towards a truly wondrous 2007!

You’re back at the office and you’re wondering,“How am I going to make it through another year working with Alan? I wish he would get a transfer to Alaska.” Read on to discover helpful tips on coping with office relations...

Our inspiration for 2007 comes from a quote by one of the world’s most respected leaders,
“Breathe gently, walk peacefully, laugh hysterically”
Nelson Mandela
We would be grateful to receive feedback from you on how we can improve our service through this monthly letter as well any topics and questions you would like to see discussed in the future editions.
Make the most of your best in 2007

  • Are you finding it difficult to start the year?
  • Are you needing to motivate your staff?
  • Are you planning ahead for annual conferences , team building events and sales meetings?
  • Are you putting together your training calendar for the year ahead?

Professional Impressions’ passion and purpose is to make your training, conference or seminar an entertaining and memorable success, ensuring the maximum return on investment for your company.

Contact us for more information on new and exciting ways to approach team building, events, conferences and seminars.
Tel: 011 467 5126     Email: prof–imp@mweb.co.za
Are you stuck on what to give your
loved one in this month of Love?



Give a gift that will linger long in the hearts and minds of your loved ones.
Boost their confidence with a personal consultation aimed at helping them make the most of what they have.
Spend some fun, quality time with that special someone in your life – it can be your best friend, brother, mom, husband.
Contact us for our special Personalised Image Consultation/Shopping offer-in the comfort of your home.

 
Tel: 011 467 5126     Email: prof–imp@mweb.co.za
A New Year, A Work in Progress
This time of year you will come across many articles encouraging to change, set goals, start a fresh, make a list of resolutions or try something new.
We are so charged up–that we set ourselves unrealistic expectations eg loose 20 kilo’s, become the M.D., clear all the clutter in my house and learn to speak French before March. By the end of February you are emotionally exhausted by these unrealistic expectations that your morale and self– esteem take a plunge. By yearning for instant transformation you engage in self sabotage.
I do not believe in changing myself once a year. I believe in continual growth, always striving to be the best I can possibly be at this moment.
It is not about trying to make changes once a year–it is about continuous growth and improvement because we are all
“A Work in Progress”.
“We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned,
so as to have the life that is waiting for us”
Joseph Campbell
Discard your resolutions, find yourself a quiet corner, a notebook and ask yourself:
  • What can I do to make my life more stimulating? Write down at least two ideas and follow them through in the coming week.
  • What can I do to make my work life less stressful? This could mean tackling tasks as soon as they arise.
  • Ask yourself what is it that I really need instead of what do I want? Be courageous and contemplate in what is it truly that you need to make you content in this time of your life.
  • Write a list of changes and how you would set out to practically achieve them. Be open to new and perhaps better ways to do things. Prioritise these changes–is it more important for you to learn to say no to others or to swim 20 laps each morning?
  • Write down your aspirations, dreams, desires.
  • Discover your talents by noting in which areas people compliment you more often.This will help you to discover your abilities and areas of aptitude. Once you know what they are, do them more often and you will find success no matter what you do.
Make choices that will lead to changes. One year from now you could be living your dream! However this involves choosing your destiny between now and then–how? By making 365 tiny choices along the way–these tiny choices lead to tiny changes…
Greet every morning as a 2nd (or 3rd, 4th even 5th) chance to get things right – every day brings with it new challenges and the opportunity to shape your own destiny.
“The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can’t find them, make them”
George Bernard Shaw
Have courage to change the old –old issues, old patterns, old guilt. This may require you to make changes or take action that others may not like. Be courageous in your beliefs eg terminating a dead–end relationship.
For those that have found this article has struck a chord within, Professional Impressions offers a fantastic and inspirational corporate workshop that relates to achieving personal aspirations.

A Work in Progress will encourage you to take a step back and re–evaluate your life. This practical workshop will enable you to see yourself and others in a new way.
For more information contact Professional Impressions
Tel: 011 467 5126    email: prof–imp@mweb.co.za
www.profimpressions.co.za
Building office relations
Maybe you work in an open plan office where space is minimal, with everyone working in close proximity to one another and you’re not sure how you are going to keep your sanity in the year ahead.
Perhaps you are just starting at a different company/ division and are petrified of being the new person. “What if everyone hates me? What if I can’t do this job?”
WHEN YOU’RE THE NEW PERSON AT THE OFFICE/DIVISION
  • Competence equals confidence. Do your homework about the company/division you are joining and you will feel more assured as to what will be expected of you; and what you can expect in return.
  • Do make an effort to remember names and places on your first day. Use association techniques to secure names in your memory.
  • Strangers often mistake shyness for rudeness or snootiness. If you are shy, be honest, and tell colleagues that you are a little nervous and you will find that most people will gladly help you with anything you need.
  • First impressions count so do spend time on your image and grooming and be consistent with these. Be careful of being too flashy–you don’t want to be labeled as the “Bling Queen” on your first day.
  • Do not spend your first day sucking up to the boss, flirting outrageously, painting your nails or taking an extended lunch break!
  • Try to project a positive attitude and convey an air of professionalism no matter how lost you may feel.
  • Never be afraid to ask questions. It is better to ask a hundred questions and get it right than to assume and get it horribly wrong.
  • Do not speak negatively of your previous company or employers as this creates a negative impression.
  • Always avoid gossip and try to steer away from office politics in a business environment.
Remember that all changes take time to get used to. Hang in there, you’ll soon feel part of the furniture.
WAYS TO MAKE NEW STAFF FEEL ACCEPTED
  • When introducing colleagues to a new employee, never use their nickname. Do not inject unnecessary personal information such as, “ That is Tumi, she’s just got divorced”
  • Never use terms of endearment as these can be seen as offensive or undermining, such as “darling” or “sweetie”. In fact, even when addressing new co–workers and peers, it is polite to ask permission to use first names and to invite them to do the same.
  • Be genuinely interested in people and ask them more about themselves.
  • Never speak negatively of your colleagues, managers or work environment. If you have nothing good to say rather don’t say anything at all.
  • Make an effort to show new staff members where they can find things and give them useful tips such as “ The bathroom door doesn’t open unless you push it up while turning the key...”
Remember that making people feel respected is the surest way to gain respect in return and to build good relations.
HOW TO DEAL WITH A DIFFICULT COLLEAGUE/MANAGER
  • Do not let others control how you feel about yourself, nor give them the power to dictate whether you have a good or a bad day. Although we cannot always control other’s behaviour, we can control how we react to them.
  • When a colleague or manager looses their temper with you, stand your ground and do not fly off the handle. Learn to bite your tongue and think before you speak. Listen to what they have to say and do not get involved in an argument at this point as it will likely only cause further complications. When they are done suggest a meeting later to discuss the situation.
  • When you are in a conflict situation, follow these steps to diffuse tension:
    1.Identify immediately that you are offended
    2.Discuss your feelings with the person who caused the problem as soon as possible
    3. keep the focus on you by using the ’I’ word instead of YOU; “I feel insulted by that comment, what did you really mean by that?” instead of “ You are very insulting, how can you say that?”
  • Never use foul language, no matter how frustrated you are.
  • When dealing with criticism try to look objectively for any truth in what is being said. Do admit to your mistakes and attempt to provide a solution or to rectify the problem.
  • Keep in mind that some criticism is subjective and do not take it to heart. Ask yourself if it was unkind, negative or unfair. If so, ignore it!
Professional Impressions would like to credit the following for information and images used in this article:
Give Stress a Rest Karen Wolfe, Natalie Manor and others
Romancing the OrdinarySarah Ban Breathnach
Simple Abundance Sarah Ban Breathnach
Something More Sarah Ban Breathnach
Its Your MoveCyndi Maxey
Dealing With Difficult PeopleRoberta Cava
A Modern Girl’s Guide to Etiquette Sarah Ivens
’O’ Magazine June 2003
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www.profimpressions.co.za
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