Tuesday, 28 July 2015

3 Proven Steps to Stress Management

Stressed out? 
How many times have we asked someone this question? How many times have we been asked this question? There is a very good chance that you may be reading this because you’re a little stressed out. Stress is one of the most debilitating conditions in our society.  Stress can be experienced in virtually any and every aspect of our lives – Job pressure, money, health, relationships, sleep deprivation and poor nutrition. A recent US poll said that nearly 77% of people experience physical symptoms caused by stress. 

Some times it is easy to think of stress as something that just shows up ‘naturally’ once you hit a certain age. Stress is often associated with certain types of lifestyles. While these may sometimes be true, what is not true is that when stress ‘happens’ to you, you are powerless under its weight as a helpless victim. Stress Management is just as much about decisions and attitude as much as it is about circumstances beyond your control. In this article we will look at just three things that one can practice as efficient stress busters:

Identifying the Root

In a company setting, often employees have so many responsibilities and deadlines that an average day can become a blur of activities and stress. After that happens repeatedly, it is tempting to just ‘zone out’ once work is over and turn our mind to other things like rest or entertainment. But in situations like these, stress can build up like steam, creating immense pressure. Whenever one is experiencing stress, it is healthy to slow down or stop, step back and take a look at where this stress is coming from. What is the source? Processing and reflecting on this is a very crucial step to understanding the magnitude and solution for minimizing the stress. Identifying the root of the problem is half the battle.

Prioritizing responsibilities

Often stress can be caused by trying to do too much all at the once. It is better to be efficient at a few things than mediocre at everything. Moving things that require your attention to the top of the urgency list puts priorities into perspective and allows you to focus on that which needs your immediate attention. Everything else can wait.

Drawing boundaries

Sometimes employees don’t know when to say ‘no’ and to whom. Often within a high-pressure situation, the tendency is to bite off more than one can chew. When an employee’s plate begins to get full, the responsible thing to do is to approach their supervisor and discuss redistribution or delegation of responsibilities so that one can manage their tasks well. This will sometimes mean being very clear about what one can do and cannot.

Stress Management Training is an essential program within every company. It looks to serve and take care of its employees for their own sake simply because they are a company’s most valuable assets. Companies have diverse ways of handling stress within their employees:

Thursday, 23 July 2015

Taking a Stance - A Leadership Essential

By withdrawing her participation from the National Squash Championship 2015, ace Indian squash player Dipika Pallikal has made a silent yet resounding and strong statement. Her stance came because of the vast discrepancy in the prize money offered to men and women who are competing for the same honor and glory of representing their country and winning laurels for their nation. In this tournament where the male winner stands to receive INR 1, 20,000 a female winner stands to win less than half of that amount, at INR 50,000.

With the wave of women’s liberation, this bold statement from Dipika is a refreshing and encouraging sign of good things to come. For decades, women in India have settled for pay cheques that are far lesser than what men draw for the same amount of work and effort. From the corporate world, to the world of celebrities, to the field of sports and in every other field, the highest award that women receive is still worth much lesser than what their male counterparts enjoy. Although a hue and cry has always been raised about it, Dipika has taken this one step further and put her money where her mouth is and put her opinion about this issue into action.  “I feel we deserve equal pay like most of the tournaments at the PSA professional circuit which are moving towards equal prize money”, she said.

This disparity does not exist only in the world of sports but also extends into the business world. The ratio of men and women who occupy senior positions in most organizations is shockingly variant. People like Dipika standing up against such disparity will hopefully set the precedence for more equality to emerge.

A very though-provoking quote by Helen Keller floats to mind like an illuminating glow of light at such times. It is for us to pray not for tasks equal to our powers, but for powers equal to our tasks, to go forward with a great desire forever beating at the door of our hearts as we travel toward our distant goal.” Times are changing and as a species we must change along with it. There is advancement happening in every field across the world and women are achieving tremendous heights, leaving nothing but awe and the celebration of success in their wake. Dipika’s recent statement is indicative of women refusing to take the easy way out anymore. All the advancement in the world only means that the world is now an equal, level playing field.

Whether you are a man or a woman, rich or poor, white or black, challenged or able, no matter who you are, the world is open to you in all its opportunities and possibilities. Being who you are does not make anything less accessible to you. Dipika’s move is a lesson on leadership and how leadership skills can make a positive difference. By taking a firm, assertive, unapologetic yet very respectful stand, she has made the world sit up and take notice. She has emulated Malala Yousafzai’s ringing words, I raise up my voice – not so I can shout but so that those without a voice can be heard. We cannot succeed when half of us are held back.” Are you ready to let your voice be heard amidst the crowd?

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Strategies Used for Effective Time Management Training

Time management training has turned out to be an integral part of organizations for successful delegation of quality work. Improper management of time and work, inability to handle excess tasks and procrastination of duties lead to inefficiency and decreased productivity. Training institutes of repute like MMM Training Solutions give you opportunities to buy such training materials from the websites directly. You can also practice certain time management strategies to help you deliver tasks on time.

1. To-Do Lists: Remember how your parents used to pester you to make a planned routine of the things to study for the day or week? This holds true for performing your personal and professional life as well. Keep a small notebook in your pocket, a handy tool to remind you of the tasks that you require completing every day. Priority is the key to successful planning and hence, it is important that you pen down the things according to their importance and urgency.

2. Be Organized, Focus on a Single task: One of the commonest issues which many face while managing a whole load of tasks is being disorganized. Training strategies on Time Management offered by professionals at institutes like MMM Training Solutions teach individuals to first clean away the mess by discarding the items or tasks which you do not need any more or can sell or give away. Once the clutter is cleared plan out how and when to accomplish the rest of the tasks one by one by not going haywire.

3. Learn to Say “NO”: Just as telephone etiquette training teaches you to say “no” to customers for things you cannot do or resolve, an important strategy of time management is to learn saying no to tasks you cannot handle. It is better telling people you cannot help them rather than taking the responsibility and not fulfilling them.

4. Time Yourself: Make use of your time wisely. Incorporate smaller tasks in between commuting or waiting at the doctor’s. Make a planner for setting up goals that need to be accomplished at present and the long term ones.

Time management training is key for success! 

MMM Training Solutions conducts time management training, soft skills training, cross cultural training and leadership training programs for corporates in India and abroad. 
Wish to master the art of managing time? Learn more about our training programs and trainers at www.mmmts.com 

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Freedom of Communication versus Political Correctness

Dr. Benjamin Carson a distinguished man of science and healing; the Director of the Pediatric Neurosurgery Division at the John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, narrates a very interesting anecdote in his speech at the National Prayer Breakfast, which provided a lot of food for thought.

A very successful businessman was in the habit of giving his mother exotic gifts on Mother’s Day, and was frantically looking for what to get her one particular year, when he came across two magnificent birds. He got very excited upon seeing them because these were no ordinary birds; they could sing and dance and talk!! Thoroughly pleased with his discovery, he sends the birds to his mother. Unable to contain his jubilation at finding such an exotic gift for his mother, he calls her and asks her, “Mother, mother what did you think of the birds?” His mother says, “They were good!” In utter dismay, he realizes that his mother had eaten the birds and says, “No! No! No! Mother you didn’t eat those birds! Those birds could sing and dance and talk! They cost $5000 apiece!” And his mother coolly replies, “Well then they should’ve said something.”

That, Dr.Carson believes, is where we will end up as well if we don’t speak up for what we believe in. He talks about how political correctness can become quite a threat because it fastens a muzzle on others. People become afraid to say what they are thinking or feeling because they are afraid of offending people. As Dr. Carson lightly puts it, “I have found out that it is very difficult to speak to a large group of people without offending someone.” Once, when he was talking about the difference between a man’s brain and a dog’s brain, someone heatedly claimed he was being offensive to dogs!

It is this bristling sensitivity that makes us deaf to the intention and intelligence behind other people’s opinions. Dr.Carson tells us that education is meant to liberate man and by stifling our voices, we are stifling the spirituality and development of an entire nation. Closer home, we see such a situation emerging in our personal and professional lives as well. People are so engrossed in coming up with the perfect communication strategy, that they lose sight of their point. While it is crucial to show respect for anyone else’s opinion, it is also important to communicate your mind without any shackles on the freedom to communicate.

True spiritual and economic development can only emerge if you remove that muzzle from your mouth and communicate with confidence, sensitivity and strength. Use your intelligence to nurture yourself and your nation. Jump over those communication barriers and never ever give excuses.
Dr. Benjamin Carson proudly concluded his speech with his vision for the future; “One nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.”

Being mute out of fear or an unwillingness to take the lead, will only make us take ten steps backwards or end up like those poor birds. A man who was bullied in school, who was the butt of all the jokes, who was called a ‘stupid dummy’ is now one of the most renowned doctors and scholars in the world. If he had chosen to stay mute, or if he had been adversely affected by the cruelties of his critics, can you imagine what the world would have lost out on?

Watch his absolutely inspiring speech on conducting critical conversations versus political correctness, and answer Dr. Carson's question, "What are you most concerned about when it comes to the spirituality and direction of our nation?"


Communication Skills Training plays a vital role in shaping the confidence of individuals and also encourages freedom of expression and a healthy intellectual growth.

MMM Training Solutions conducts communication skills training, corporate training, soft skills training, cross cultural training and leadership training programs for corporates in India and abroad. 

Monday, 13 July 2015

The Cardinal Rules of Good Interviewing

I remember conducting my first interview like it was yesterday. I was the production manager in a high-end furniture company and had department floor strength of 29 workers at the time. I was interviewing candidate ‘No.30’. But this interview was more significant for other reasons than just a nice round number. The position I was conducting interviews for was for the floor supervisor position. While there was a lot of talent in my department, they needed a leader to watch over the more trivial aspects of managing a team. Clearly the person for this job needed to have some ‘leadership’ under their belt. And so after sifting through numerous resumes over weeks, I finally narrowed it down to two candidates. I remember scheduling them on the same day, one before lunch and the other after. This was going to be a good opportunity to exercise some interviewing skills.

The first candidate had all the credentials on paper. He had worked in supervisory positions before, was used to being in charge and working under the pressure of goals and targets. But he was a very ‘by the book’ player. When I asked him what he would do in a unique situation, he could not think out of the box. The second candidate, whose resume did not match the first one’s, was a more intuitive leader. He seemed to understand the pulse of a team and had the creativity to handle out of the normal situations. So on the one hand I had a candidate who was very methodical and rigid and on the other I had a candidate who was intuitive and creative. In hindsight though I realized that I probably didn’t give them an equal shot or do justice to how their skills fit into the job requirements. I had interviewed them with different parameters and the results were apples and oranges. I had no way to gauge which one was better for the job. Looking back now I could have done things a lot better in terms of interviewing skills.

  • Job requirement vs. Benefit to the job – While I gauged them on their skills and abilities, I was more interested in what they could bring to the job to add to its overall efficiency (or even diversity), instead of determining if what they had, was what the job fundamentally required.
  • The Whole Package – I seemed satisfied with the fact that they were one-dimensional in their skills or abilities. While certain employees may lean heavily toward their natural strengths, it is important sometimes for the sake of their own careers that they grow or develop in the areas of weaknesses. Determining this is a crucial part of interviewing.
  • Compatibility with Vision – Ultimately, what is most important is not what an employee can bring to the table or which one was better for the job but rather which one, in the larger scheme of things, would fit better not only for the job but also in the larger context of understanding one’s contribution to the company as a whole.

InterviewingSkills Training  plays a vital role in preparing the hiring manager to conduct interviews in an efficient manner to best determine the right candidate, not only for the job but also in terms of the larger need of the company. Even successful corporations today understand the importance of factoring in not only skill but also attitude in such training. 

MMM Training Solutions conducts interviewing skills training, corporate training, soft skills training, cross cultural training and leadership training programs for corporates in India and abroad. 

Friday, 10 July 2015

Corporate Theatre - Our Adventures With Creativity Training Continues!

Creativity takes courage.” – Henry Matisse

Recently we successfully concluded our inaugural training program on Corporate Theater as a part of our Creativity Training module.  A lot of you may have done a quick double-take at the name of the session and may be wondering how on earth something as artistic as theatre could influence an inherently process-driven corporate team. Well, we must admit that it seemed like quite the task initially, but the positive results of the module left us overwhelmed, stunned and flushed with success.

When the client came to us with the unique requirement, instead of feeling stumped, we were quite excited at the prospect of a new challenge! Putting our heads together and working tirelessly with the client and our internal creative team, we came up with a module that seamlessly integrated the art of acting and theatre, and connected it to coming up with creative solutions to corporate problems.
The ice-breaker saw everyone from Superstar Rajnikanth to wrestling stars to Jack Sparrow entering our midst. As the participants slowly shed their inhibitions, we saw something quite spectacular unfold in front of our eyes.

The activities were designed to give the participants a chance to perform a series of skits in different genres and the core of every challenge was a work-place situation that they would encounter in their daily professional lives. Outrageous characters were created as managers donned the role of Yama Dharma Raaja (the god of death), thieves, Kings, Lord Vishnu, five year old children and even animals found their way into the festivities! What was most interesting was the way they engaged their creative and critical thinking skills when they found themselves under the spotlight.

What we realized at the end of the session, was that while our module enabled the participants to tap into their reserves of creativity, it also gave us an opportunity to dive into our own pools of ingenuity! While we guided the participants into awakening the creative spirit in them, we also used creativity in business and put together a fun, innovative and informative module and unleashed our creative sides as well!

As Albert Einstein rightfully said, “Creativity is contagious. Pass it on!We definitely saw this come alive both within our own team and within each participant. The more they interacted with each other on creative solutions, the more each and every one of them started thinking outside the box!

So remember, there is a creative genius inside each and every one of us. Sometimes we are awake to its presence and sometimes we are not. So indulge in creativity training and learn to set your ideas wild and free! They will ignite your own conscience and also roar like wildfire across your team, spreading positive thoughts and ingenious innovations all around! 

MMM Training Solutions conducts corporate training, soft skills training, cross cultural training and leadership training programs for corporates in India and abroad. 
Please visit our website http://www.mmmts.com to know more about our programs and our trainers.