By Mary Ann Faremouth,
The second step of the Faremouth Method is “Ask Better Questions.” I believe we all, during these uncertain times of Covid-19 upon us, are asking many questions. A quote I heard recently by Charleston Parker, a self-taught theologian and scholar, struck me as a framework for asking questions that might yield productive ideas for the new work world. He said:
“In life, you have three choices:
Give It Your All.”
Sitting in my chair as an Executive Recruiter for over 25 years, I hear many things from Employers, Candidates, and Recruiters. I began to use this framework to ask some important questions that might facilitate new growth, development and expansion going forward, for myself and the people with whom I work on a daily basis. You might use these questions and write in your own answers. Let’s take a look at this and see if it might offer any hope and inspiration for positive change in your life.
1. Give Up
When I think of “giving up,” I reflect back on what I can give up that will help me move forward. We can all choose a new direction and find our way to a better future with a positive mindset and strong determined mental attitude. I think the most important thing we can all give up during these tough times is a NEGATIVE ATTITUDE. We are the pilot in our own plane of life and we can navigate this plane to a safe landing by the choices we make, the attitudes we develop and the habits and routines we put in place. Limiting beliefs should be near the top of the list of what we give up.
Some of the attitudes and beliefs that might be given up to have better success in the new work world, from a recruiter’s point of view, are the following:
Give up the belief that these times during Covid-19 are only about loss, struggle and setback. This might be the opportunity to take those online courses you’ve always wanted to take, branch out and get to know that supervisor in another state or country on a Zoom call, etc. I am also hearing many of the candidates saying that working from home is too alienating and fosters only setbacks in the workplace and lack of teamwork. One of my clients mentioned to me the other day how he was so impressed that one of his Senior Sales Reps called an online meeting with sales reps in different parts of the country to discuss how to be instrumental in keeping in touch with customers all over the country and how they could implement a schedule of virtual get-togethers with each other to track progress, discuss challenges and stay connected virtually. They arranged to have a “virtual happy hour” to let their hair down and talk to their co-workers about how each other’s kids might be doing with attending school in or out of the classroom and even share certain computer programs that might help the students advance with challenging subjects.
Give up the belief of “Me” vs. “We.” One client mentioned to me that his employee was offering to take on more work during these times because of the recent cutbacks. The employee wanted to reach out to previous contacts in the industry to make a more valuable contribution to the company. The Vice-President told me that this candidate we had placed with them would for sure be rewarded with the largest increase available at his review time and would be considered for rapid promotion because of his good “chip-in” attitude. Because the employee was more focused on what he could contribute to the company rather than what the company could do for him during these tough times, getting rid of the “what’s in it for me” attitude will definitely help him down the road to climb the ladder of success in a more expeditious manner.
Give up the belief that new innovative ideas can’t be formulated during challenging times. In 1908, after the San Francisco earthquake and a financial panic that led to a recession, William Durant and Charles Stewart Mott, who were already the owners of Buick, founded General Motors. Uber, Airbnb, Groupon, and Square were all created during the Great Recession between 2007 and 2009. Sometimes what seems like a small, simple idea is the start of something big. Mailchimp, a contact management service, was founded in 2001, following the 9/11 terrorist attacks and corporate scandals like Enron. Can you imagine founding a digital contact management service during the dot-com recession? What about that new product that is an extension of what you already sell? Could you reach out to other factories to determine if your company could add that product to it’s variety of products and expand the company’s market share?
2. Give In
Some of the attitudes and beliefs we might have to “Give In” to in the new work world could be as follows:
In the traditional sense when I think of “giving in,” I think about conceding to another person (or viewpoint) you don’t truly believe. Sometimes giving in is a part of collaboration. Sometimes you have to give in to reach a solution together. Giving in can be compromise and that’s a healthy part of any relationship whether it’s a business partner, family member, friend or other important person in your life. In the work world, if the boss wants you to send in a report every Monday morning at 8:30 am. and it conflicts with when you have to get your child fed, dressed and on the computer for their daily class work, collaborate with others in your home and ask for assistance. Initiate a compromise to be able to honor your work commitments and give in to the request in a positive, deliberate way in order to have the assignment done on a timetable that is not necessarily convenient for you.
Giving In right now to the fact that we do have to work from home for longer than we thought might be seen as a positive measure in these uncertain times. We can give in to the fact that we don’t have to fight the traffic, get up earlier to arrive at work at 8:00 am., feed and walk the dog when it’s still dark, have a bit more flexibility in our day, not have to put on that suit that might be getting a bit snug around the waist, etc.
Give in to the fact that you must wear a mask. If your boss wants you to come in once a month for an in-person meeting with other employees, make sure you have your mask on and are honoring the safety and health of all concerned.
Give in to the fact that we are all in this together. I saw a quote on Facebook the other day that said, “After all this is over what really will have mattered is how we treated each other.” I think we need to keep that in mind each and every day. This isn’t just a situation we are enduring in Texas or the United States. It’s a GLOBAL pandemic and we are all living a new normal. If we can “Give in” to the fact that we are all HUMAN and the HUMAN element is universal, it will make going through this ordeal and giving in to the human element might make it just a bit more bearable.
3. Give It Your All
When I think of “Give it Your All,” I think we need to keep in mind that we can still perform at a stellar level with a pandemic among us. We can still reorient our mental map and create success routes for our present and future. Even if times are uncertain, your future doesn’t have to be. Embrace personal development now. When in doubt, we can GROW along the way! The whole world is unraveling but it can be looked at as though these times of crisis are full of opportunity!
I choose to look at the quote by Charleston Parker, “Give Up, Give In, Or Give it Your All,” as positive in all regards. Decide what you want to “Give up and Give in, but make sure whatever you do, you GIVE IT YOUR ALL!!
Mary Ann Faremouth is the founder and CEO of Faremouth & Company and a highly regarded recruiter, career consultant, speaker and writer. She has been a placement specialist and a leader in the national recruiting community and has placed thousands of employees since 1982. She was the 2016 president of the Houston Independent Personnel Consultant Group and is a board member of the NASPD (National Association of Steel Pipe Distributors) and Authors Marketing Guild. She specializes in recruitment of professional, clerical, and temporary placements, with a variety of industry specific positions in various fields. Her expertise is in matching quality applicants with the right job, serving companies ranging from thriving independents to global conglomerates, tailoring each engagement to the client’s needs.
Mary Ann holds a CPC (Certified Personnel Consultant) credential, was certified by the Board of Regents of the National Association of Personnel Consultants in Washington, DC, and was awarded an Advanced Communicator Bronze, Advanced Leader Bronze Awards by Toastmasters. She cofounded Jobs: Houston magazine in 1997. Mary Ann maintains affiliations with professional organizations in various other industries, including oil and gas, financial, construction, IT, and structural, mechanical, and civil engineering. She has a keen understanding of the marketplace and its specialized needs and requirements.
Mary Ann brings a wealth of expertise to clients looking for the right individual to maximize and empower their team. As a consultant she is available to assist both the applicant and the client to quickly adapt to the New Work World. She also offers virtual and in-person workshops to guide individuals through personalized self-discovery to find new career paths. She continues to build her affiliations with recognized leadership organizations to best serve her clients and applicants by creating a network of highly professional contacts throughout the world. She utilizes her platform as a writer and speaker through her articles and affiliations to reach those in need of help, offering hands-on guidance to navigate this uncharted territory. (More information on www.faremouth.com)
Mary Ann’s award-winning first book Revolutionary Recruiting has been listed by Book Authority as Number #1 of the Best 100 Recruiting Books; #1 Best Seller, Non-Fiction by Amazon (2019); Top 20 Recruiting books by Recruitics; Readers’ Choice finalist (2019) by Houston Literary Awards; Best Non-Fiction (2018), Best Cover (2019), and Best Self-Help (2018) by Authors Marketing Guild. Her books support individuals and corporations, teaching them how to tap into each candidate’s unrealized potential to find the right person for each job, maximizing both employee satisfaction as well as the employer’s bottom line. Mary Ann also showcases her expertise of the recruiting world on a monthly podcast for The Price of Business and weekly articles for USA Business. Mary Ann lives in Houston, Texas.