Friday, 29 September 2006

Newsletter Issue 120, September 2006

Sam Young Newsletter

Issue 120, September 2006
Hi guys,
Check out Sam Manfer's AMA article on Staff Motivational Tips: 6 of the Best below.
For some great Word tips, read Right-Click Functions
Don't forget, if you want to be taken off my mailing list, click here to send me a reply e-mail and I will remove your name.

Staff Motivational Tips: 6 of the Best

People want to succeed in their work. When they start with a company, they are focused on doing well. So this old AMA article by US Management Consultant Sam Manfer entitled "Avoid Motivational Bankruptcy: Six Tips for Motivating Your Staff" caught my eye recently. However, many managers unconsciously de-motivate their employees, so read on to find out how.
Employees who are new to the company need guidance. If you don’t make a conscious effort to show them the way your organisation and department do business, they will do it their own way—and they’ll probably be less effective than either of you had hoped. They’ll then become unhappy and unmotivated—strike 1. That will lead to poor job performance—strike 2, which could eventually lead to the loss of what could have been a valuable employee. Strike 3, they’re out.
These six tips will help keep your staff motivated, enthusiastic and playing their best for your team:
  1. Set Clear Expectations. People aren’t mind readers. Tell your staff members what results you want and how to get them. Don’t assume they know what you think they should know because of experience, intelligence or whatever. Make your desires perfectly clear. They won’t be insulted by this; to the contrary, they will be relieved to have a clear game plan to follow. You will have to take the initiative because most employees will be afraid to ask for guidance, fearing that they may appear foolish if they ask for instructions. If your employee has a different approach, listen intently to their suggestions and work things through together. Show that you value their opinions and expertise. People who feel empowered and valued will go the extra mile for you.
  2. A Well-Trained Employee Is a Happy Employee. Employees—especially when new or entering a new role—are like sponges. What they absorb is up to you. You can fill that sponge with good liquid or let them fill it with whatever they pick up. This applies even to your best people—they are looking for new liquid that will give them a competitive edge. Unless a person has learned how to sell your specific product or service they cannot be optimally effective. I hear all the time, “They don’t need guidance; they are experienced.” I always retort that I am an experienced golfer, but I am still a 17 handicap. Experience doesn’t mean they know how to do the job as it should be done (ie, your way). Everyone can learn something new or refresh their old knowledge. So invest in a good training program to make sure your people have the tools they need. The business world is constantly changing and your people need to remain on the cutting edge of your industry. Consider bringing in a professional to train. In-house people, unless doing or managing the task, may lack the knowledge and credibility to be effective. For example, in many companies the marketing department presents training for new salespeople—not a good idea. Marketing emphasises product advantages, features, benefits and competitive differentiation—rather than selling skills. This indoctrination makes salespeople feel they should go out pushing prospects to buy, rather than finding out what the customer really needs. This prevents them from building long-term credibility with customers.
  3. Coach Your People Until They Get It Right. People cannot coach themselves. If Tiger Woods needs a coach, your people need one too. Go on sales calls together. You should take the lead the first time, to demonstrate how you would like things done. Then let your new person do the next one. It is crucial to give ongoing, positive feedback. Keep accompanying the person until they get it right. Better comes before perfect.
  4. Recognise Good Behaviours. Telling someone he or she has done well—no matter how small the deed—is a big deposit in the person's motivational bank account. Your first impulse will be to tell an employee what they did wrongly. Keep in mind that this leads to motivational withdrawal. You have to exert an extra effort to spin negatives into positives. Say, “I really liked how you did X. But when it came to Y, consider doing it this way in the future, because...” This will be tough because it takes more energy to find positives, or to restructure poor behaviours into constructive suggestions than it is to just say something negative.
  5. Pay Attention to Your Bad Days. Here’s a typical situation. You’re up to your ears in alligators. It’s a bad day and you want to strangle someone. Now your subordinate comes in and lays on another frustration. Be very careful. Your day is not their issue and a negative reaction will inadvertently be a drain to the motivation account. Be alert to how your attitude influences others. If you do slip up and take out your own frustration on your staff, apologise immediately and promise not to do it again.
  6. Motivate People through Rewards. Rewards are catnip to employees’ self-esteem. Salary, benefits and bonuses are part of the job. Rewards are special, personal and very energising. They are public acknowledgements of your appreciation for a job well done. Two caveats: First, don’t presume to know what will please a person. Everyone is different. Ask what 'special something' would excite the employee. If the employee says something monetary, probe to see what else they might like. Second, the cost of the reward is not important. Just make it tangible—something for them and others to see. This amounts to a lotto-size deposit into the employees’ motivation account. Also, include everyone in the rewards occasion. This creates a team atmosphere of co-operation and group motivation. In summary, de-motivating is like going down a slide—fast and without effort. Motivating is like crawling up a flight of stairs covered with broken glass. So check your negative reactions and your employees will stay motivationally high with little effort on your part. Although intuitively obvious, the implementation will require you push yourself into behaviours that are different—and nobody likes to change. However, if you make the shift you will stop the motivational withdrawals and your portfolio of satisfied, highly productive employees will keep paying you dividends.
Author Bio: Sam Manfer is a sales consultant. He is the author of the book "Take Me to Your Leaders". For more information, please visit

Right-Click Functions

Did you know that you can right-click selected text and then drag it to a new location while holding the RIGHT mouse button?
Why hold the right mouse button, you may ask. Well, doing this will cause a pop-up menu to appear where you let go of the right mouse button, which includes some nifty options such as "Copy here", "Cut here", "Link here" and "Create Hyperlink here".
While the copy and cut functions are self explanatory, the lesser known "Link here" function, a simpler version of Word's Bookmark function, allows you to copy pieces of commonly used text to other parts of a document. Then if the text needs to be changed, it can be changed in the first place, and all subsequent copies of that text can be updated by selecting them and pressing the F9 key.
Finally, the "Create Hyperlink here" function will make a link out of the text you have copied. To actually give the link destination after it is clicked, right click the newly created link and choose "Edit hyperlink" from the pop-up menu. In the resulting dialog box, you can specify the URL or local address in the address bar and click OK.
Thanks to Woody's Office Watch For Mere Mortals for this tip at

Computing Security

Window's Secret's Newsletter regularly reviews their "Security Baseline"; all the components they consider de rigeur for sound small business computer security. Their current baseline is as follows:
  1. Hardware firewall. For small-office networking, the most affordable secure firewall is the Linksys Wireless-G WRT54GL router (USD$70), which offers 802.11g Wi-Fi and also includes four wired Ethernet ports. Be sure to enable WPA or WPA2, both of which provide strong Wi-Fi security. The WRT54GL was PC Magazine Editors' Choice winner.
  2. Security suite. ZoneAlarm Internet Security Suite (USD$60 pa) has long been rated as the best all-in-one software firewall, antivirus program, and antispam filter — now with antispyware scanning and Windows OS kernel protection. It has Editors' Choice awards from PC Magazine and CNET as well as being rated "the best all-around protection" by Consumer Reports Magazine.
  3. Antispyware program. For individual PC users, the most effective remover of spyware is Webroot Spy Sweeper 4.5 (≈USD$35 pa), according to comparative tests published by PC Magazine. The previous version, 4.0, was also top-rated in PC World tests. For businesses looking for a centrally-managed solution for 10 or more PCs, Webroot's Spy Sweeper Enterprise (≈USD$240 pa for 10 users) has won the latest comparative review by Windows IT Pro and was rated a Best Buy by SC Magazine.
  4. Update management. Windows Update and Microsoft Update are no longer recommended. To protect against questionable Microsoft downloads, knowledgeable users should configure Automatic Updates to "Notify me but don't automatically download or install". Then read our free and paid newsletters to learn which patches not to select. Home users and small-business networks should deploy critical patches using Shavlik's NetChk Protect (free with registration for one year for up to 10 PCs). The technology has won top honours from Redmond Magazine and SC Magazine.
I use Zone Alarm's single user, Norton AV, Webroot Spy Sweeper, Lavasoft's Ad-Aware single user, & have Automatic Updates set to "Notify me but don't automatically download or install" (and I check with Woody's after each patch Tuesday as to what to install & what to ignore).
Let's be careful out there!

TLAs for SMEs

Here are this newsletter's TLAs for you:
  • CMIP, Common Management Information Protocol. A network management protocol built on the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) communication model. The related Common Management Information Services (CMIS) defines services for accessing information about network objects or devices, controlling them, and receiving status reports from them.

Please feel free to email me with any TLAs that you want to get the bottom (meaning!) of.

Tips, Short+Hot Keys
In this newsletter, we look at all you can do with Alt, Shift, Ctrl and ; (semicolon):
  • Access "Insert the current date" Ctrl & ; (Semicolon)
  • Excel "Select only visible cells in the current selection" Alt & ; (Semicolon)
  • Excel "Enter the date" Ctrl & ; (Semicolon)

Hot Linx
If you enjoy reading old cookbooks and having a giggle, this US site is a tongue-in-cheek look at 50s ...ah... cuisine at
And for a Kiwi run-down of what's new in gadgets, head over to for a preview of the up & coming must haves
For the total saddo, you can sign up with a "Popularity Dialer" service - someone who will call you as many times per day as you would like to pay for to make you feel good at
For all those great 'science facts' that you want to really know the answer to, scroll through & rate the list at

                                Catch you again soon!! E-mail your suggestions to me here

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