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Nothing makes me happier than hearing about someone’s success at work

I once heard a George Lucas quote that stuck with me – “Dreams are extremely important.  You can’t do it unless you imagine it.”

When I begin a job search, the first question I always ask a job seeker is, “what is your dream job?” Somewhere in that dream is the perfect job for each person, whether it’s the head coach of the Riders, a free-lance writer for a social media campaign, a chef, a firefighter or Celine Dion’s manager (each of those are real answers I’ve received!).  While I will admit, I’m quite skilled at my job, I may not have the strings to pull to hook someone up with Celine Dion, but I do recognize that within that dream probably lies an interest in popular music, a passion for an instrument, an outgoing and organized personality.  From those traits, a real and meaningful job can be sought.   4to40 prides itself on thinking outside the employment box – focusing on each individual’s uniqueness. No one should be forced to work in a job or an environment that doesn’t make them happy or fuel their passion.  For people who experience disability, work generally is a dream that is accepted as whatever is given to them.  I work hard every day to change that.  When I take individual interests, skills, talents and personalities into account, and then customize and carve roles out within workplaces that are of interest to the job seeker, I open up a whole world of potential for employment.

 

Dreams are extremely important You can’t do it unless you imagine it

Nothing makes me happier than hearing about someone’s success at work, whether that’s an increase in hours, learning a new set of tasks or being invited for beers on Friday after a shift.  The feeling of success at work is so much more than just the job itself. Gaining independence, financial freedom, being a contributing and valuable member of a team, forging real and meaningful relationships.  We all seek these outcomes from our workplaces.  Why wouldn’t the success of 4to40 be measured in the same ways?

For the people I support, becoming employed leads to independence, self-confidence and a feeling of self-worth.  But wait, my role doesn’t end there.  4to40’s partners, the employers we work with, not only see the great value the employees bring to their workplace efficiency, they also recognize how workplace culture changes.  When committed to inclusion – that is, embracing the diversity of every human – employers see that their entire workforce can be more welcoming, patient and empathetic.  Workplace culture becomes more supportive of everyone, ensuring that all talents and successes are celebrated and acknowledged.  4to40 encourages employers within our community to create an environment where all employees feel connected, valued and safe.  Through the support of our project, job coaches and willing peers in the workplace – all these important needs can be met, and dream jobs can be achieved!

Miranda Klinger

Employment Partnership Consultant, 4to40

 

Gentle Teaching really made me assess my own life

Gentle Teaching has transformed the person I am as well as the person I aspire to be in many ways. What started out as a “job” in the beginning, quickly became “spending time with the guys” and this was because of Gentle Teaching. I think essentially, Gentle Teaching allowed me to understand the importance of living in the moment and appreciating the little things in life. I started realizing quickly the opportunities for learning and life experiences that these guys I support had missed out on through their lives because people who were supposed to “care” for them, honestly did not care. Showing them first hand that they are just like everyone else and have the freedom to make their own choices was sometimes anxiety filled. In the end though, not only did they learn something, but I did as well – how much I took for granted in my own life.

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Gentle Teaching really made me assess my own life to what I viewed as important and what others thought I viewed as important because these are very different categories. Gentle Teaching has allowed me to view situations from multiple perspectives which enhances my problem solving skills. I think someone cannot fully understand this culture of gentleness until they are fully immersed in it. In order to fully understand the culture of gentleness, it is important to allow yourself to be vulnerable not only with the individuals you support, but your support team as well. I’ve never had a job where I could discuss personal struggles with a coworker and come out feeling more equipped to support rather than being torn down and humiliated. I have truly been blessed with an amazing COR family and continue to grow and thrive because of them. Gentle Teaching quickly becomes a way of life and you begin to realize how often you use it outside of supporting. I look forward to using my experience with the culture of gentleness in my future endeavours of nursing and beyond.

Shelbi, COR Support

13 Ideas on How to Become a Bigger and Better Leader

In today’s day and age there is a lot of talk about becoming bigger, better and stronger leaders: and to one degree, rightly so. We are living in a new era where technology is advancing, Baby Boomers are retiring and younger generations are replacing those who once were in positions of  greater influence. So what? Well I think we need to challenge ourselves in our understanding of what it means to be a leader and how leadership in the twenty-first century is changing. In this post you will find thirteen idea’s on how to become a bigger and better leader.

Take charge

1. TAKE CHARGE

Become the sculptor of your own career and life – not the sculpture. Leaders are authentic – the authors of their own lives.

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2. KNOW YOUR STRENGTHS

Start practicing good leadership by keeping a log of your successes. Record even small wins – this is essential for building your own confidence as well as developing a crucial leadership competence.

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3. FIND A CHAMPION

It’s essential to have someone who will be your champion in the organization. It’s also necessary that this person be in a secure position in the organization; someone who is willing to go out on a limb for you.

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4. WORK TOWARD EXCELLENCE

Excellent work performance is a necessary, although not sufficient condition for leadership. Stay on top of your professional development. Don’t wait for your organization to offer a seminar in the skills you want to learn – seek out your own training opportunities or offer suggestions for opportunities you would like to see.

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5. TAKE INITIATIVE

Whatever you’re trying to accomplish, you need to take control of your own destiny and act on your own convictions. To become a leader, you must first learn to lead yourself. Initiative is a fundamental leadership competence

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6. TAKE RISKS

Developing leadership skill requires getting out of your comfort zone. Set “stretch” goals that enable you to develop new skills. Join committees and take a leadership role. This is an opportunity to develop leadership competencies as well as increase your visibility.

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7. BE OPTIMISTIC

As purveyors of hope, leaders must be optimistic. Realistic optimists take control where they can and stop investing energy in things beyond their control. When faced with a setback, optimists don’t succumb to feelings of helplessness. They maintain their focus on the larger purpose.

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8. DEVELOP YOUR SOCIAL INTELLIGENCE

Leadership is interpersonal. Effective leadership is fundamentally about how you relate to people

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9. BECOME AN EXCELLENT COMMUNICATOR

A leader must be able to communicate his or her vision in a way that energizes people and inspires them toward action. The ability to gain the cooperation and support of others.

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10. SHOW CONCERN FOR OTHERS

Research indicates that among the most important characteristics of effective leaders are compassion, the ability to be nurturing, generosity, and empathy. These all can be combined into social traits: and leadership takes place in a social context, so it’s not surprising that these characteristics are so important for effective leadership

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11. DEVELOP AND MAINTAIN A SUPPORT SYSTEM

Taking the time to maintain supportive and close connections with others is necessary to attain and sustain the energy and well-being you need to achieve career success.

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12. MAINTAIN INTEGRITY

Integrity may be the single most important characteristic of competent leadership; it’s the sign of a trusted advisor and effective leader. People are willing to be led by someone who follows through – someone they trust. Do what you say you will do. Don’t promise to do what you can’t. People without integrity may gain power, but they don’t truly lead.

Persevere

13. PERSEVERE

Persistence in the face of adversity is one of the cornerstones of resilience. Stay resolute in your values and goals and remain determined and self-disciplined in your efforts to achieve them. Persistence doesn’t mean you never feel discouraged.

 

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References:

www.emergingleaders.com