SO YOU THINK YOU HAVE A MARRIAGE TOO?

Hello dear friends & family!! We appreciate the privilege to share with you on the penultimate day in August 2019 & also the fact that this is the 130th post on this blog.

2019 is spinning away so fast & it’s super amazing to reflect on what has transpired so far this year. As usual, we love to ask about your goals & targets for 2019, hope it’s running smoothly or it’s jacking a bit & you need a pit-stop.

No matter the situation, just make sure you are growing that is the most important.

In our last session on this topic, we asked a question “SO YOU THINK YOU HAVE A MARRIAGE?” and we got a lot of feedback from people with different perspectives about the post & we do appreciate it as these comments make us know that people out there are reading & are being impacted by the post.

To catch up on the last post, please click the link below:

SO YOU THINK YOU HAVE A MARRIAGE?

Just a bit of house cleaning as we gradually look forward to celebrating our 5th Year Anniversary.

Please note that in the coming days & months some changes will be made regarding the distribution of our contents via Social Media to ensure that we are as less intrusive as possible.

Before that happens please subscribe to our blog by clicking the “Follow Blog” button at the bottom of our homepage. We do appreciate the support & feedback.

In our society today, there are a lot of living arrangements between a man & a woman that doesn’t necessarily mean marriage. The institution of marriage has really been watered down to the wedding ceremony alone. I recently attended a colleague’s wedding & I felt a bit of nostalgia looking at the couple beaming with smiles, holding hands & dancing.

It was really beautiful, however that wedding ceremony signals the beginning of a lifetime journey together as a couple & it’s the only institution in which you actually get a certificate (Marriage Certificate) before the learning, tests & examinations starts.

That event got me thinking about how the focus today is about arranging a big ceremony, while neglecting the journey of marriage.

That journey happens to have 4 seasons & it doesn’t mean like nature all of them come & go in a space of a year. The 4 seasons can happen to a couple in a space of days, weeks, months or years & to really affirm that you have a marriage the couple (as a team) must successfully navigate through these seasons & make adjustments while each season lasts to come out better.

Also the 4 seasons of marriage come in cycles & it’s never a one-off, so the requirement for the couple is to keep working on a daily or regular basis on themselves to get better & better.

As was mentioned in one of the posts on making a great team, there are stages to team dynamic: Forming, Storming, Norming & Performing. The same principle applies to marriage.

Marriages that have lasted over the years go through the 4 stages & seasons to come out pristine like Gold after a refiner’s fire.

My wife & I are looking to celebrate 14 years of marriage later this year & I must tell you it’s been awesome ( One of the best decisions I’ve made in my life) & challenging all at the same time. For us to really say or think we have a marriage, we’ve had to go through all of the stages & seasons while we kept getting better & better just like sweet wine.

A lot of younger couples see us & are inspired, they want what we have & even ask that we mentor & pray for them, etc. We just smile & oblige their request noting that nothing good come easily & it takes serious effort to get a good thing going. It’s a lot of hard-work & teamwork.

To put things in perspective:

EVERY MARRIAGE OUT THERE IS DEALING WITH ONE ISSUE OR ANOTHER.

Please don’t be deceived to think your marriage is so bad & that the grass is greener on the other side. It’s greener on that side because they put in the effort to water it.

I see a lot of young people who like our technological advancements wants things easy, quickly & microwaved but just like nature you need to plant the seed, water it, wait for a while to allow it grow & then get harvest.

SEED-TIME-HARVEST

The 4 Seasons

The concept of the 4 seasons of marriage comes from a book by one of my favorite authors Gary Chapman PhD ( who wrote The 5 Love Languages)

There is a series about The 5 Love Languages on this blog & you can click the link below to peruse them starting with Part 1

The 5 Love Languages

The climate in my home country of Nigeria is divided into 2 seasons: Raining Season ( which we are in now) & the Dry Season ( where we experience Harmattan between November & mid-March)

It’s possible to still discuss the seasons of marriage using this as examples, however to be consistent with the author in the light of the climate/weather obtainable in the US & the fact that it’s a global audience, we will stick with the 4 seasons of WINTER, SPRING,SUMMER & FALL.

In the next post on this series, each season will be looked at as Dr. Chapman highlighted in his book & we will draw out the emotions,attitudes,actions & the climate of relationship.

What stage of team dynamics are you in your marriage?

You think it’s greener on the other side?

What season are you currently in your marriage?

So you think you have a marriage too?

This is my snippet …….. I AM SHALOMESQ

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THE MAKING OF A GREAT TEAM – Prequel

Hi there Family!!! It’s another great Friday & the month of June 2019 is a few days from becoming history!!

Have you met your goals & target for Q2? What are your plans to achieve Q3 targets & make the end of 2019 fulfilling?

Feel free to reach out to me if you need help & I would be more than happy to add you to the FB group:

Setting Goals that’ll stick in 2019

In which we are building a community of goal getters.

Transforming from ME to WE!!

After I posted the last article on this topic last week, I realized that there is a need to run a prequel to that post just like they do in the movies.

The making of a great team actually starts from YOU as an individual.

You must inculcate the collaborative spirit by transforming your mentality from ME to WE.

This post is aimed at sharing some of the lessons I’ve learnt in managing projects & leading people to successfully achieve the required objectives.

To catch up on the previous post please click on the link below

THE MAKING OF A GREAT TEAM

John C. Maxwell published a book in 2001 titled “The 17 Indisputable Laws of Teamwork” & last week’s post attempted to highlight the first 2 laws:

 The Law of Significance

People try to achieve great things by themselves mainly because of the size of their ego, their level of insecurity, or simple naivete and temperament. One is too small a number to achieve greatness.

The Law of the Big Picture

The goal is more important than the role. Members must be willing to subordinate their roles and personal agendas to support the team vision. By seeing the big picture, effectively communicating the vision to the team, providing the needed resources, and hiring the right players, leaders can create a more unified team.

WHO ARE YOU?

There is no team without a team member or player & it’s impossible to achieve the required level of greatness without one, so let’s take some time & focus on this individual.

One of the very first principle that I learnt when I was starting out in my career was the ability to know myself. The late Dr. Miles Munroe was very clear about this he says “When purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable“. You as an individual must know yourself, your purpose, skills & abilities, if you dont know this, you will be abused as you’ll be in the wrong places, doing the wrong things & become frustrated.

To know yourself, you need to simply conduct a SWOT analysis & highlight your areas of Strengths & Weaknesses while also accessing Opportunities & Threats around you. The aim is to magnify your strengths while aligning them with opportunities, at the same time reducing your weaknesses & guarding against threats. This exercise will really help you to align yourself with your purpose in your career & in life generally.

If you’ve played the Electronic Arts (EA) Sports FIFA Football video game, you will see a player’s card with their specifications like speed, strength, dribbling ability, good in the air, etc. All of these are like SWOT analysis information to make you as the manager select your team.

It will be difficult to select & draft a player to the team if a manager doesn’t have their stats on a card, the same way it’s difficult for your line manager to do the same at work. Now the SWOT analysis is not just about the skills you have (like ability to use Microsoft Office), but also about your attitude & temperaments.

Some people say they prefer to work alone!! When I hear such statements, I know for a fact that the person is dealing with a chunk size of ego & has got some attitude problems that will not flourish in a team. As established before, one is too insignificant a number to achieve greatness.

My usual practice as a Manager when anyone joins my team is to ask the individual to prepare 2 things for me:

A SWOT Analysis: This allows me to see how best to deploy & engage them while working to reduce their weaknesses & threats as well as maximizing their strengths & opportunities.

Goals & Targets for the next 5 years: This allows me to align their goals & aspirations with that of the team & the business at large. I’ve realized over the years that when there is alignment between an individual’s goal & that of the organization, motivation & passion will occur naturally.

People get stressed & frustrated when there is a misalignment.

Does this work all the time? NO!!! Most of the time it works, but not all the time, some team members feel it’s none of my business to know their goals & some say they dont have a weakness to analyze.

Nevertheless, I keep on doing it & i’m encouraged by the results that those who go through the process get at the end of it all.

After the SWOT analysis is conducted, you as an individual now knows your value & what you can do. These can now be deployed by your manager to achieve set targets, goals & objectives.

The Law of the Niche

All players have a place where they add the most value. Essentially, when the right team member is in the right place, everyone benefits. To be able to put people in their proper places and fully utilize their talents and maximize potential, you need to know your players and the team situation. Evaluate each person’s skills, discipline, strengths, emotions, and potential.

How to transform from ME to WE?

Focusing on ME is a great way to start & it’s not bad as already highlighted above – you must know yourself first, understand your limits, your temperaments, skills, etc, but dont just stay there, with the knowledge about your value & what you can contribute in a team, you are now ready to transform ( it’s a process, a journey, it takes time) to WE.

To transform from ME to WE, the below key skills are required:

  1. Humility ( Drop the Ego)
  2. Meekness ( Teach-ability. You dont know everything)
  3. Confidence ( Have the required content)
  4. Empathy (Feel the pain of others)
  5. Listening skills ( You’ve got 2 ears & 1 mouth for a reason)
  6. Collaborate ( Mix your value with that of others)
  7. Accountability ( Be responsible for your actions & own it)
  8. Dependability (Allows others to count on you to deliver)
  9. Self Management (Be self driven!! Know WHAT you need to do, WHEN to do it & HOW best to do it)
  10. Be inspirational ( Let others be motivated to be like you, be a good example)

The list is not exhaustive.

I’ll like to leave you with the Business Dictionary definition of a team:

A group of people with a full set of complementary skills required to complete a task, job, or project.

Team members:

(1) Operate with a high degree of interdependence.

(2) Share authority and responsibility for self-management.

(3) Are accountable for the collective performance

(4) Work toward a common goal and shared rewards(s).

A team becomes more than just a collection of people when a strong sense of mutual commitment creates synergy, thus generating performance greater than the sum of the performance of its individual members.

Are you still ME focused?

Do you really know yourself?

Have you conducted a SWOT analysis on yourself?

What are your goals & aspirations in life? Are they aligned?

Where are you on the road to transforming from ME to WE?

This is my snippet …….. I AM SHALOMESQ

THE MAKING OF A GREAT TEAM

Thank God it’s Friday!!! It’s the penultimate Friday in the month of June & very soon we will be embracing Q3 of 2019!! Wow the year is running away so far. I hope you are doing great & making some progress no matter how small.

I’ve been watching a lot of football ( soccer) lately with the UEFA Nations League won by Portugal, the FIFA U20 World Cup that just finished in Poland ( And Ukraine came tops as champions) as well as the ongoing FIFA Women’s World Cup competition in France with Nigeria & Cameroon qualifying out of the group stages into the round of 16 & looking forward to the CAF Africa Cup of Nations competition starting today in Egypt. My mind has centered around various teams for a couple of weeks, hence the inspiration for this post.

Let me highlight a couple of points my Mentor ( John C. Maxwell ) always makes when he’s talking about this topic:

One is too small a number to achieve greatness

I’ve checked all through life & this truth holds true. You cant achieve greatness as an individual, you need people around you, working with you to get to that realm of greatness. This is the way God has made things to function in this world – everything that works in life is connected.

No matter the type of sports that is played on earth, there is always a team, from golf to javelin to ice hockey to Formula 1, nobody does it alone. There are coaches, psychologists, nutritionists, physiotherapists, trainers, admin,protocol & security personnel who all work to ensure the common goal is achieved for the athlete & the same applies to relationships, marriages, corporate organizations, businesses & life in general.

The earlier you realize that you need people around you to achieve your goals & objectives in life, the better for you. I love another thing that John says when comparing Success & Significance. He says Success is arriving at your planned destination alone, Significance is arriving there with a bunch of people that you’ve connected to & inspired to join in your quest.

Personally, I’ve received individual awards & accolades over the years in my career, but the one I enjoy the most is a team award & today I love to work with teams to achieve greatness & significance. Dont be alone, Ecc 4:10 (MSG) says “It’s better to have a partner than go it alone. Share the work” share the wealth. And if one falls down, the other helps, But if there’s no one to help, tough!

Some people pride themselves in saying they are self-made, but when you have a deeper look at it, it’s not true. Someone somewhere helped, gave a leg-up or a boost along the way, so always strive to recognize those people & things that helped you along the way, it might not be positive, it might be a hard or difficult situation, but at the end Rom 8:28 (AMPC) “All things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good“.

Teamwork makes the dream work

” Teamwork makes the dream work, but a vision becomes a nightmare when the leader has a big dream and a bad team” —- John C. Maxwell

It’s really great to have a team, but what is more important is to have a working team. In most cases you will see just a group of individual stars & not a team. There is this all time debate about who is the greatest football player of our time – Messi or Ronaldo? I drift towards Ronaldo because he has achieve a lot with different teams over the years not just at the club level but even in the national team, Messi has only been at FC Barcelona & really struggling at the national level.

The goal is more important than the role. Members must be willing to subordinate their roles and personal agendas to support the team vision. By seeing the big picture, effectively communicating the vision to the team, providing the needed resources, and hiring the right players, leaders can create a more unified & working team

As I was ruminating on these things, I stumbled on a post by another mentor of mine – SKIP PRICHARD on How to create a powerhouse team & he broke it down into 4 points with the mnemonic code T.E.A.M.

Powerhouse is defined as “a team having great energy, strength, and potential for success.” To build a powerhouse, there are four pillars:

  • Transform
  • Empower
  • Achieve
  • Motivate

There are a lot of points to unpack on this topic, but allow me drop the anchor here & pick it up next week as inspired, however the series on Cultivating A Growth Mindset will still continue in parallel & I have some exciting news to share in the coming days.

Are you going through life alone?

Do you have a team?

Are you a team player?

This is my snippet…….. I AM SHALOMESQ