How To Make Your Wind Horse Fly

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“Better sharpen your wits on this one…”

Riding wind horse demands more than equestrian prowess. It requires being genuine. So how do certain personalities conquer the world riding wind horse?

Examine the case of Alexander The Great. He was ambitious, stubborn and determined. What did he really gain by conquering the known world besides saddle sores and a swell head?

As Aristotle’s principle student, Alexander believed he could ride wind horse. He rode hard and swept Persia in his wake. Next on his agenda were the desert sands of Central Asia until he came upon the Indus River. At the gateway to India, Alexander felt stymied. He had lost his sense of purpose. Trying to regain his composure, he sent out two men to uncover a personage of great wisdom, which they found in a nearby village.

Alexander questioned the sadhu extensively and became even more frustrated. Threatened with death, the sadhu replied, “You have the power to take away my physical body, but you do not have power over life and death. Only the Guru has this power”.

Intrigued by the Guru principle, Alexander spared his life. He entreated the wise one to return with his men to Greece. He remembered Aristotle’s discourse. Holy men of India are reputed to have the unlimited powers Alexander craved. What he failed to see was that the sage did not ride the winds of power; he fostered the spirit of compassion.

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“Because you prefer riding the winds of compassion…”

The Indian sage agreed to Alexander’s request. However, he also foretold Alexander’s destiny. The sage recognized men who exercise absolute power feel invincible. They also have no taste for the true path of wind horse.

We need not make the same misguided mistakes. There is another path. The Tibetans refer to this path as riding wind horse of wisdom. It is the path of the sacred warrior where there is no violence. The principal of wind horse is best expressed in the following quotation by Lao Tzu:

Mastering others is strength; Mastering yourself is true power”.

All warriors riding wind horse recognize the need for resilience. Training and preparedness give us the necessary reflexes to handle challenges. Attempting to ride wind horse without discipline is a dangerous exercise. It can cause the unwary untold suffering. It needs to be cultivated with awareness. Therein lies the trap. Certain personalities go for the dramatic power play. However, this path has no bells and whistles. There are either applause or bold strokes. Misguided riders just receive a heavy blow to their ego.

The key is to cultivate an invisible mala. These are the beads of gentleness, courage and self knowledge. Learning to radiate this goodness makes riding wind horse a sane proposition. Take for example, the wealth of openness. There is no need for luxury brand yoga mats or organic cotton kung fu outfits. Openness can not be fooled. It knows artifice from basic goodness.

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“Putting the pedal to the metal…”

Once I met a Buddhist monk sitting in the middle of a mountain stream. It was a hot summer’s day near Almora. I could feel his playfulness and approached. He motioned me to sit next to him. The water was refreshing and felt good.

You must find your comfort zone. Observe the flow of water through my fingers. Never aim to grasp what cannot be held by the hand.”

What can I learn from this gesture?”

What you learn is to observe the inner sanctum of the closed fist. Unfurl your fingers thus”, he demonstrated.

The hand is empty”, said I.

Precisely”, he retorted.

Is this how we attempt to handle the wind horse of the unexpected?

Unwittingly, yes. The commonest pitfall every aspirant on the wind horse path falls prey is termed spiritual materialism. There is a universal tendency to see riding wind horse as a process of self-improvement. There is nothing to measure. It is a question of getting rid of what you no longer need.

The problem is that ego can convert anything to its own use,” spoke the buddhist monk, “even spirituality.” The trick is to let go of the desired result rather than mental persistence.

So instead of making a dramatic wish list of career or behavioural changes, start with just observing your nature. Let go of conflicting ideas and the wind horse will reshape your reality. The only barrier is overcoming fear. Dealing with fear is a complex phenomenon because it raises the issue of insecurity.

The more you fear, the more incapacitated you become. You become frozen in action and it becomes all-consuming if you don’t let go. Do not mistake fear for adversity. This was pretty sound counsel the monk shared.

When fear dissipates, you experience a wave of self-confidence. Alexander didn’t understand this principle. He suffered from false pride. Fear plagued his every step. His leadership was based on force not the mobile force of communal ownership for decisions taken.

Whatever you do, do not go through the motions of riding wind horse. Life does not imitate art. Life is not an action movie or video game. It just is. If you really want to accomplish something worthy of your energy, then it is advisable to execute a strategy of selflessness. The more you give, the more you will receive in return. This is not the law of supply and demand. It is a higher law, and it registers every act of selfishness.

Will you be completely understood if you pursue riding the wind horse of compassion?

Perhaps not by everyone, but then you will not mind. You will have discovered your own inner strength. Gratitude will arise from your heart. Adversity will no longer seek to cross swords with you as you gallop to the beat of a different drummer.

Join The Conversation. Let us what makes your wind horse fly.

Article Title: How To Make Your Wind Horse Fly
Photographs: curated by ES

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

For further inspiration
Visit CAREO: Building one success story at a time.

Can You Afford To Ignore Engagement

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“Because you recognize business wisdom doesn’t come with job titles…”

Engagement is not about getting married. Smart business leaders understand that they must evangelize and inspire their colleagues to get the most out of their team. Engagement therefore, is fostered with trust and open exchange. The truth of the matter is leaders and particularly managers find the art of engagement difficult.

Engagement demands dialogue, participation, and connecting. Most managers feel uncomfortable with this process. They believe that it questions their authority and that people will think less of them. These individuals couldn’t be more wrong. Business wisdom and strategic planning do not come with job titles. They come with experience and more importantly an innate understanding of human values and behavior. You cannot learn this in grad school. Nor can you master this subject by reading academic journals or professional reports.

So, if something is missing, where can we learn to empathize and tap the source of engagement? Inside the human heart. To find out more, search this space and uncover what motivates you to succeed, thrive, and prosper in any environment. This process is quite difficult. It takes you out of your comfort zone because it personalizes your decisions and how you interact with colleagues. It makes you responsible.

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“When you love to samba…”

Managers feel more comfortable crunching numbers, acting as policy wonks, and base every decision on what they term, the concrete data. If you walk this path of conventional wisdom, you will only reveal your lack of empathy and never succeed in getting your colleagues to engage. Grad school is partly to blame for this persistent behavior and the corporate world only serves to reinforce these attitudes for keen players who wish to make it to the top.

To illustrate this point, we know someone by the name of Bibi. That’s not his real name. He works in finance at an investment firm and his job is to get the clients he handles to make as many trades as possible during a week. Bibi is good at his job and he’s serious about his work. He manages four people, who handle a lot of his research. The overall environment is insanely competitive. Yet his job brief also states that he must coach his junior colleagues. He is uncomfortable with this because rather than see his team as individuals fighting for the same cause, he sees them as an internal threat.

Then the unthinkable happens. One of the team members got pissed after work and crashed his motorcycle skidding off the road. The team was devastated. Under his shell, Bibi realized that he was too hard on everyone at the office. Despite what senior supervisors might think, he decided to take the initiative and do something about this. He got his team together outside the office and they talked about their feelings, their expectations, and what really mattered to them. In their young faces, he could see himself. He rediscovered in his heart what it meant to aspire, be different, be successful yet still show his humanity.

When he discussed this issue with us, I realized that he had begun to tap the real meaning of leadership and to act as a mentor with dignity. It was a challenge, but his team members noticed he was no longer the same man. They went to the hospital and visited their injured colleague. Empathy was no longer a word in a dictionary. It had become an action plan.

Why does it take a crisis to make certain leaders or managers face up to the fact that we are all human beings with real feelings and dreams? The corporate world can be a rather brutish place. But it doesn’t have to be. The blue print for business can incorporate financial gain with those softer values we all cherish. It’s a matter of engagement, commitment and caring. Our experience has shown that if your employees or colleagues are unhappy at work, results suffer. Worse, everyone is demoralized and either they injure themselves or they leave as soon as they can.

Core motivation is built with passion. But passion can only be fostered when people love what they do. This can only happen when they are engaged and given positive incentives. So what in your view is the best way forward based on your experience as a business leader? How positive are you in the work place?

Join the conversation. Let us know how you engage.

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

For further inspiration
Visit: CAREO

12 Reasons Why MBA Admissions Is More Than Retail Therapy

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“And she’s buying a stairway to heaven…”

Applying to business school is a major decision. MBA Admissions is not just about buying a stairway to heaven nor is it this seasons IT bag. It is an exercise and commitment to career development. To make the grade to step up your career is an intense exercise in personal branding, obtaining strong GMAT scores, getting great recommendations, and the ability to sell your achievements. Add a healthy dose of strategic marketing and you can get accepted just about anywhere.

Here are 12 key career counseling tips to get you started:

Tip No.1: Get A Strategy
MBA Admissions requires an actionable career management and application strategy. Career planning is your first step. Target and evaluate the business schools to which you would like to apply. Visit the institutions when possible. Discuss your objectives with alumni. Make a check list to see that your career aspirations and qualifications match the MBA Admissions criteria.

Tip No.2: MBA Admissions is not a cake walk. It is a snake pit. It is advisable to get professional help from someone who can give you the tools to succeed. Getting To Yes should be your career call to action. Tackle the challenges with a sound methodology.

Tip No.3: Exploit Your Personal Brand
Start by building a personal SWOT analysis. This is a cornerstone to personal branding. There is a universal principle at play here: MBA Admissions results are created twice. First, the result is created in your mind. Then, it is generated through systematic work. As in all career management initiatives, persistence pays dividends.

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Tip No.4: Success starts with commitment. You must give the MBA Admissions process 100% commitment. Do not worry about who else is applying. You can only sell your own achievements. At the end of the day, it comes down to fostering a positive attitude.

Tip No.5: Make the right choice. The leading business schools recruit from a global elite. Hence, the MBA Admissions Committees are spoiled for choice. Make sure that you apply to those business schools best suited to your professional goals. Forget the business school rankings. They are no more than a glorified beauty contest. Any top MBA will deliver an outstanding education.

Tip No.6: Do not apply just to the usual suspects. Consider other programs. Most candidates apply to a minimum of four programs. There is no magical number.

Tip No.7: Examine Business School Attributes
Examine the language a school uses to “sell” its attributes. Harvard Business School is a case and point: “We encourage candidates who can benefit from — and contribute to — a transformative education in which students challenge and learn from each other as they test their growing leadership abilities.

To create a dynamic environment that mirrors the breadth and depth of our world economy, we seek diversity. Each fall, we welcome 900 students representing more than seventy countries and a wide range of interests and backgrounds. While our students’ lives and experiences vary greatly, they all share a demonstrated capacity for leadership and a desire to effect positive change. For the right person, now is the right time to apply.”

Tip No.8: Notice the stress on leadership. Most MBA candidates simply do not have this focus. If you do, make sure that you can justify genuine leadership roles. MBA Admissions Committees know that the emergence of an individual’s leadership talent does not follow a pre-determined schedule.

Tip No.9: Take Note: age, social, gender, ethnic profiling matter
All schools look for diversity. According to this logic, the more different you are, the better your candidacy looks on paper. Although there are no official quotas, political correctness plays a role in the admissions process.

Top MBAs are constantly recalibrating age profiles for class intakes. Some schools desire +3 years of work experience. Others do not. Which program are you better suited to: MBA or EMBA? Traditionally, MBA programs recruited candidates 25-28 years old. Today, the age has dropped. If you are +30, does this matter to you? If it does, perhaps European MBAs are a better fit. EMBA candidates are typically +35.

Tip No. 10: The Financials Influence Choice
Another key point: Carefully review the MBA Admissions and Financial Aid sections before you apply. Begin with their Admission Criteria pages. Take advantage of any MBA Admissions events in your area and network with alumni.

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“When getting accepted to a top MBA makes you sprezzy…”

Tip No.11: Which MBA is best for me
Choosing the appropriate school is like a marriage. I recommend the following schools for serious consideration. They are not listed in any particular order. Please note that European MBA programs are more transparent when it comes to counseling potential MBAs.

They also recruit more mature and seasoned candidates. If you have deep experience, you will find these programs better value for money. They provide excellent networks. If you plan to live and work in Europe, they can serve your career aspirations with more intimacy.

Tip No.12: European v. American MBAs
In our opinion, the leading programs are: INSEAD, London Business School, IMD, IE Business School, IESE Business School, HEC-Paris, Said Business School at Oxford, and Judge School of Business at Cambridge. Are there others? You bet there are! As George Orwell might have stated, “Some MBAs are more equal than others”. My only counsel is to choose wisely. It is not necessary to go to the USA as it once was.

In addition, please note that there are outstanding MBA programs all over the world. It depends on you, what you really want, and how much this degree really is worth to you. An MBA is a major investment in time, money, and sweat equity.

In the USA, American business schools market their programs like tupperwear parties. The usual suspects in this category are for the most part household names. Depending on the source, ranking criteria bring up similar names but not necessary in the same order.

The MBA top 10 wish list include: Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB, Wharton Business School, Columbia Business School, Tuck at Dartmouth, Yale School of Management, Stern at NYU, Anderson at UCLA, Haas at UC-Berkely, University of Chicago-Booth, and Kellogg at Northwestern. Are there others?

Of course there are. MIT-Sloan comes immediately to mind. US News publishes a comprehensive catalog worth consulting. In the States, there are literally thousands of schools from which to choose. Americans do not choose their MBAs with the same criteria as non-American MBA applicants.

Although top MBAs are more international in their outlook, many others are still very provincial. If you are not an American and you want to do an MBA in the States, think the process carefully through. For example, do you really want to be in Ann Arbor, Michigan?

Ross might offer an excellent education, but if you are from a cosmopolitan city, you might find yourself out of place. We had one client the other year, who did and regretted her choice. Don’t make the same mistake.

An MBA has the potential to dramatically alter the course of your career. Despite criticism in the media on MBAs, this form of education has the power to act as a career catalyst. Although an MBA is not for everyone, it can be a transformational experience if properly exploited. To give yourself the best chance to get accepted, your application merits feedback from an objective and knowledgeable source.

Join The Conversation. Let us know what you think.

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand, building one success story at a time.

For further inspiration
Visit CAREO

Why Happiness Matters Most

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“Every man wants to be happy, but in order to be so he needs first to understand what happiness is.” – J.J. Rousseau

Do you come across as listless and depressed? If so, the reason is clear. Each one of us is in search of happiness, one of the most misunderstood concepts in any language. To some, happiness is an emotional state linked to an external event, environment, achievement or gain. This is our first cardinal mistake. Happiness is not waiting for you in the window of Cartier. It is a state of being, which must be judiciously and painstakingly cultivated.

Henri Bergson once wrote, “Happiness is commonly used to designate something intricate and ambiguous, one of those ideas which humanity has intentionally left vague, so that each individual might interpret it in his own way.

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“Because you’re spoiled for choice…”

Understanding Bergson, Rousseau, and countless others can make your head spin. People become disillusioned, feel devalued, and better still become cynical and cantankerous. We feel a weez bin had attitude. The reasoning here is that in the West we’ve systematically bought into a consumerist mindset of artificial happiness. It’s not that we shouldn’t enjoy a bottle of Chateau d’Yquem with Twinkies if we desire. You should however, be aware that these little pleasures are just fleeting sensations. Better still, such experiences should egg us on to find the source of pure happiness so that we can live every day as if it is the best day of our lives.

A Way Of Being
I remember, one morning I decided to jump on the first train from the Gare Saint Lazare to Trouville. The sun was bright and I was glad to be out of town. The summer light dappled the fields of Normandy and I could feel the cool water between my toes as the tide came in.

Next to me on the train sat another fellow headed to the beach as well. We fell into conversation as people will when they’re not glued to smart phones and began to chat. I listened to him complain about the heat, the traffic in Paris, and his work situation. He was sounding like one of T.S. Eliot’s hollow men. Although I tried to cheer him up a bit, I recognized, he was chasing something the material world couldn’t bestow on him like a prize at a summer fair.

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“Because sharing the wealth is joy…”

If he only realized the toxic and self harming nature of his negative emotions, he could have got off the roll coaster of self pity, denial, anger, and even envy. Do you also find that when the monsoons come, you’re ready to chuck in the towel?

Write Your Own Book Of Changes
Changing the way we see the world is not changing your prescription any more than it means buying that fabulous pair of sunglasses by Moscot you saw at Colette. When we are slaves to dissatisfaction we need medicine to break our addiction. The search for true happiness demands we find an alternative approach to shifting between states of joy and self loathing. When we experience the pleasure and awareness of calm in a storm, then we better appreciate what some pundits call the alignment principle. The best alignment I know is through meditation.

Meditation Is The Royal Road
Some people think that meditation is a form of vegetation. Others feel the techniques will change their fundamental beliefs. How do you feel? Are you happy and content with your lot in life? I rest my case.

We all need meditation, whether we are walking, sitting, eating, or working. It is a question of shifting our consciousness and this is where awareness is paramount to alignment. I have one friend who was so desperate, he went to see a guru, I won’t name here, hoping that the guru would wave a magic wand over his head and he would be dancing from joy as if he had spent two weeks hanging loose with Bob Marley. He left the ashram high as a kite after spending a long weekend. You know what happened next?

When he returned to his reality of stone grinding in Paris, his mood swung completely into reverse and was depressed as a cat deprived of fresh fish. He was experiencing what the Tibetan sage, Choygam Trungpa described as spiritual materialism.

So What To Do
Mood swings are common when you imbibe grace. Therefore, you need an action plan to make the goodness in your heart expand. This is what the groundwork of meditation really accomplishes. However, it is a process where you purge all your mental toxins, hatred, and obsessions. It is rough going and it does not happen over night. What it does do is put things in perspective, reduces the gap between appearances and reality and will deliver to you a sense of calm.

The Nature Of All Things
The Buddha understood these challenges better than most folk. He saw suffering for what it is, a fact of life, which is part of what makes up the human experience. He also understood the meaning of reality. His idea is so simple, but the rivers run deep. “Reality“, he said, “is the one thing which never changes. If it changes, then it is unreal.

So what is the one thing in your life that never changes? Your true Self. It is the nature of all things like a stream flowing into an ocean. Relinquish your narrow sense of identity and pettiness and you will discover something you can never find, never buy, and never own. Why? Because you are already what you seek. You are indeed pure bliss. To get there, it is like peeling the layers of an onion. However, once you use the knife of meditation to get through the dross, you will be in a state of joy no matter what you external challenges and environment might be.

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“Because you love hanging out…”

The Chinese sage, Fu Hsi never ran a Fortune 500 company nor did he launch a start-up which went gold in an IPO. He could have done this in his sleep. What he chose to do instead was to share the great truths with a weary world looking for answers to some powerful questions. His check-list is perfect for developing mindfulness.

Here are his 15 keys to live in a state happiness.” As a DJ once sang, it’s pure yin and yang.

1) Balance & imbalance. If you could satisfy all your whims on command, then perhaps the goblins of delusion would collapse. This is just a small taste on how we delude our aspirations from what we need to what we want.

2) Income & expenditures. Everybody is on a budget. I know, some budgets are bigger than others. Want to hear a secret: The great sage Yogananda told a dear disciple to “stop asking God for a Cadillac“. You know why? “What are you going to do if he grants your wish?” Car ownership is more than possession. Wait till you add on the taxes, insurance, maintenance fees, and parking. And that’s just for starters…”

3) Simplicity & pretentiousness. In the USA, everybody dreams of home ownership. Rightly so. Everyone needs a castle to call one’s home. But why buy a McMansion so large that you need a GPS to find the toilette? Good question.

4) Compromise & steadfastness. Compromise demonstrates to others that you understand what it means to live in society. Even the President must compromise to get things done. Why should you be any different? However, there are times when it is necessary to be steadfast. Stand on the ground you value most.

5) Loftiness and baseness. Some politicians and business people are so crass and base that you wonder what is going through their heads. Is self aggrandizement that important? Whose ends are you really serving? I could easily put in a couple of names here, but if you watch the news, there are plenty to choose from.

Loftiness means doing the right thing at the right time. it feels so natural. You understand that when you give of yourself not only do others benefit, you feel the pleasure of doing something you can be proud of. Better still, you wouldn’t even think of being proud because you remember that great quotation: Pride before fall.

6) Leaders & followers. Everyone follows something or someone. Why is that so? Because we live in a world of other people and ideas. You can be different. You can march to the beat of your own drummer, but it is a guarantee that someone has walked in these footsteps before.

When you can grasp the opportunity to build, create, develop, or fight for something worth fighting for, now is the time and step up to leadership. The funny thing with leadership is that there is nobody to lead if nobody will follow. Quite an interesting relationship, don’t you think? Food for thought.

7) The spiritual and the physical. Since we live a material world, you had better take care of your physical form. Nobody else will. Buying time out is not an option. Drugs and alcohol seems to release us from preconceived ideas of time. However, they are a fools release. Ultimately, they make us forget what can make us truly happy. Do you really want to be dislocated 24/7?

The spiritual world can offer us deep sustenance. However, like in all things, remember you are still in the body. Fly too high and you will burn up in the sky of well-intended intentions. Just ask Daedalus. He can still teach us about what happens with noble intentions.

8) Success & failure. Tell me about someone who has never failed, and I’ll show you a person who has never tried. World culture is repeat with zillions of great failures. Besides being in great company, many of these setbacks resulted in some of the greatest success stories of all times. Think Nelson Mandela. He tried to free his brothers and sisters countless times until he was thrown in a jail cell for good. His crime? Fighting for the dignity and humanity of his people. The result? He went from being ordinary to one of the greatest extra-ordinary people who ever walked on this planet. How? he followed the teachings of Gandhi. Best of all, personal success meant nothing to him. You can’t get more noble than that.

9) Fame & obscurity. Today, it seems everyone wants to be famous. Fame is the ultimate shadow play. You think you have troubles now, wait till you’re famous. Do you really want to walk everywhere with handlers and bodyguards? I thought not. Nothing beats sitting down at a lunch counter in a great diner and hanging out with the locals. Why do you think presidential hopefuls spend so much time in Iowa and New Hampshire? It’s not just to win hearts and minds. It’s an attempt to try to be normal folk.

10) Rest and movement. This is one of the best because it invokes one of the principle laws of physics: For every action there is an opposite and equal reaction. Only sloths stay immobile most of their lives. It’s their DNA. But then sloths don’t pose questions concerning happiness and the meaning of life. They just live life as they see it. One moment at a time.

11) Meditation & activity. If the goal of life is a deep state of well-being, then it is essential for you to find your core of essential goodness. One Tibetan saying states: “Seeking happiness outside ourselves is like waiting for sunshine in a cave facing north.” Forget the sun lamp. Get outside and mingle. At the end of the day, just close your eyes and watch your breath. Don’t be surprised if you find the divinity of light deep within your own heart.

12) Good fortune and misfortune. Forget the alchemy of disbelief and give thanks for your good fortune. Everything you have is good. It’s a question of appreciation. Did you know that the manure of misfortune is a great teaching tool showing you the good fortune you indeed have? Look at it this way, this is where you should be now.

13) Eternity & transitory. Lao Tsu calmly claimed, “The farther one travels, the less one knows.” This dude knew his stuff. He wasn’t saying don’t go to Portofino on your holiday. He was saying that every moment is fleeting. Watch each second pass before your eyes without grasping. Just enjoy the ride. Now, sit back and relax. The rest is easy.

14) Joy & pleasure. I think you can conjure a list as easily as myself. Yes, eating ice-cream at Bertillon on the Isle Saint Louis is pure joy. But the ultimate pleasure is to swim with the divine one without even knowing you are swimming.

15) Beginnings & endings. Like every season, turn, turn, turn… Now that we have some fertile soil with which to work, isn’t it time to kick ignorance out the door and welcome happiness into your life?

Join the conversation. Let us know what you think.

Article Title: Why Happiness Matters Most
Photographs: ES

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

For further inspiration
Visit CAREO: Building One Success Story At A Time

Make Your Destiny Awesome 1 Step At A Time

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“When your heart is like a rainbow…”

Transforming your destiny starts with one step forward. The great buddhist sage, Thich Nhat Hanh describes this process as walking meditation. You don’t need to be a monk to practice. In fact, this strategy is perfect for those of us out and about in the world of business. Everyone is walking or should I say running somewhere. The key then to making your destiny awesome is mindfulness. It will enhance your awareness. It starts as an idea, ricochets in the mind, and finally migrates to the heart.

What I truly love about this practice is the simplicity. Walking meditation is therefore, a form of meditation in action. Walking becomes our focus and when we are centered our mind becomes still. We no longer worry about the laundry that needs to be done or that billion dollar merger awaiting your attention when you get to the office. Sure the merger matters, but you’re not at the office yet. Take this time to enjoy the sights on your journey to work. Notice the peeling bark of the plane trees in the heat or the balconies of tumbling geraniums.

Mindfulness is also a form of absorption. Our daily experience is filled with ample material to convert the ordinary into the extra-ordinary. In each second, you are altering your awareness from mundane into awesome.

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Who doesn’t love the smell of freshly baked bread…

Take for example my recent encounter at a Paname landmark. I was taking my espresso at the counter at Cafe Nemours and I just watched myself drink the coffee. There was a stillness in this ritualistic routine. However, today it brought clarity, while the early morning light blazed through the glass walls. I found this experience glorious. I was conscious of my breath and the energy surging through my limbs. There was nothing mechanical and I was awake in each second.

The more you practice this type of meditation, the more profound your life becomes. Start by trying to keep your awareness involved with the moment you are actually having.

What I also appreciate about walking meditation is that it offers you concrete proof that obstacles, no matter how challenging, can be overcome. You don’t need to be born rich and famous. Humble people from simple backgrounds do get to play in the big time. Isn’t this why we continue to love Oprah or Snoopy Dog? They stand out as a testament to how you can make your destiny awesome one step at a time.

Here are 8 Simple Steps To Making Your Life Awesome one step at a time:

Step 1: Start by changing your attitude. Providing this is feasible, why not walk to work this morning? Smell the proverbial roses. Each one of us has so much to be grateful for. A magician cannot do this for us. Walking meditation is the perfect path to success. It puts us in direct touch with our feelings giving us the tools to blossom in the environment in which we our planted.

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“Because you’re inner dhuni is always lit…”

Step 2: Identify what is most important to you. Stop comparing yourself to others. This is a issue which can never be resolved. We have all done this if we are honest with ourselves. Trying to figure out why someone is more beautiful, smarter, or successful is a pointless and meaningless task. Look at what you have. Look at what makes you special. When you do so, you will gain appreciation for yourself and start to relish what makes you unique. With each step you take, you will rediscover your smile. You will also recognize what is really important as opposed to what you think is important.

Step 3: Start Your Day With A Smile. I’m not trying to get up close and personal. I’m just trying to let a little light shine into your self imposed cubicle. Do you start each day by checking your email or do you start each day by hugging your partner and children? I rest my case. I have one colleague who goes around wearing a button. It boldly states: Free hugs. Isn’t that fabulous!

What she is saying is embrace the world and each day is sweet. Positive thinking of this sort is the perfect elixir to begin each morning. And yes, a double espresso doesn’t hurt either. This is the true meaning of quality time. Check your email and social accounts afterwards. Stay productive. Be focused. Do what you do best, but not before you give thanks for the blessings life has generously granted you.

Step 4: Eliminate The Suit Mentality. Don’t get me wrong, I love a great handmade Italian suit. This is not what I am talking about. Drop the busywork. Voltaire once quipped that the cemetery is full of very important people. You understand. Prioritize. Delegate. Empower. No one can do everything by him or herself. Set yourself achievable milestones. You hold the reins of power in your hands to instigate change. This is why coordinated planning is essential.

Successful people understand this concept. This is why they appear to do more and be more. It takes a strong will to change your situation for the better. However, you have the power. It’s called resilience and determination. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

Step 5: What needs to be done. As in all things, it is impossible to love every task we have to execute. Some we enjoy and others we prefer not to do. Look at those tasks which are essential to your success. Put aside your likes and dislikes. Success is not a Facebook page with a million thumbs up. It’s about identifying the things to do to get you where you want to be. This is focus with a capital “F”.

worry_destiny_MBA-coaching-Paris
“Why worry? Enjoy a mojito instead…”

Step 6: Be Positive. A positive mindset is crucial to success and getting to awesome. Don’t let someone rob you of your dignity. Nobody can, unless you let them. Everyone has challenges to overcome or has to deal with negative personalities. If you don’t attach your integrity to the people who want to drag you down, no one can touch you. You are free.

This is not wishful thinking. It is a step in positive personal growth and development. Learn from your setbacks and you will become a wizard. The biggest mistake you can make is to give up and not bother to try.

Step 7: Look towards the horizon. All successful endeavors are focused on long term goals. Build yourself a road map. You cannot go somewhere without a plan. It doesn’t matter if you change directions as long as you get there. Forget the minutia. Life is filled with minutia. Some you must do, such as taking out your garbage. Prioritize the rest. Harness a technique familiar to yogis. It’s called visualization. Identify in your mind exactly what you seek, and make it manifest.

For example, you might want to give up smoking. For those who smoke this can be easier said than done despite the social pressure. Just tell yourself, I’ll have one, but not right now. If you keep this up without the idea of denial, your goal is within sight. I know all too well that this is a psychological and physical dependency. All the more reason to harness the power of mind to block out this habit.

One master I know in India states, “Awesome begins in the mind. Visualize the end result. Then let go of possession. Just act as if the result is already achieved. By doing so, you will create in reality what you have pictured.” Powerful words to contemplate.

Step 8: Value Your Self. If you don’t value your Self, nobody else will. Therefore, eat consciously and drink with moderation. If you poison yourself, you won’t be around to enjoy the fruit you hope to harvest. Enjoy your journey to success because part of the pleasure is becoming what you seek. Who knows, once you change yourself, you can start on changing the world. You see, when this becomes your reality, you will have become your own leprechaun.

Join the conversation. Let us know what inspires you.

Article Title: Make Your Destiny Awesome 1 Step At A Time
Photographs: curated by ES

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

For further inspiration
Visit CAREO: Building One Success Story At A Time

22 Beach Holiday Essentials For Career Planning

cinque_career-planning_mba-coaching-paris
“Emptying your mind is harder than you think…”

If Beach Holidays didn’t exist, we would have to invent them. However, when the party’s over, it’s time to clean up and reboot our career planning. Rather than lament, perhaps it is better to give thanks for all the blessings we’ve received. Let me share with you a list of 22 essentials worth keeping whether you’re career planning or not.

Sorting out the jewels in your life is more than downsizing. It is really a question of recalibrating your career calculus. Nothing is really ours in the first place. Does anybody have 22 essentials worth keeping? Well, it’s a question of perspective.
My dear friends, L & K recently emailed me this rather curious list. They are currently staying at a cedar bungalow in one of those charming Hill Stations nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas.

Certain sages in India claim that “You are what you eat” – and what you don’t eat. Similarly, life depends on what you keep and what you don’t keep. There are many things in life that people keep, but only a few are truly worth holding on to. I hope you find their career planning chart as inspiring as I do.

1) Keep Calm
Life can be unnerving. If you don’t make an effort to keep collected and focused, you could easily lose your cool. Take regular, conscious deep breaths to center yourself. This is a more sanguine approach to running through the streets shouting, “Godzilla, Godzilla, Godzilla…

worry_career-planning_MBA-coaching-Paris
“Stop thinking about tomorrow…”

2) Keep Your Chin Up
Great for your posture. Guaranteed to diminish your double chin. Best of all, it helps you maintain an I can handle this attitude. By keeping your chin up, you keep your head above water.

3) Keep Your Spirits High
Hanging out with Bob Marley’s heirs in Kingston doesn’t count. Always maintain a joyful attitude. No one can do this for you. When the going gets rough, count your blessings. Don’t be cynical. Everyone has blessings. So do you.

4) Keep Your Word
A gentleman or gentlewoman’s word should be their bond. Stand by what you promise. Think before speaking. Once a word is uttered and released into the ether, its vibration can never be erased. If you need inspiration, consider John Lennon’s refrain in Across The Universe.

5) Keep In Time
Don’t be swayed by others. Swing to your own rhythm. Although everyone must adapt to their circumstances, it is best to dance to your own soul music. Remember what Aretha Franklin said, R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

6) God Bless The Child
Billy Holiday was right. God bless your inner child. It is your access point to creativity. Marvel, imagine and invent with a carefree smile. Have doubts? Examine the creativity of Picasso and Matisse during their mature years. Playful as kittens, don’t you think!

7) Keep Abreast Of The Times
At a certain point in our lives, we feel swept away. Don’t let this happen to you. Don’t get caught in a time warp. No need to become a fashion victim either. The joy of living in any time is to be present. If you start asking yourself, Who’s buried in Grant’s tomb? This should be a signal to get out of your mental closet.

pink_career-planning_MBA-coaching-Paris
“When you’re in the pink…”

8) Keep In Shape
Your shape reveals your state of health. Remember, the body is the vessel in which you journey through life. Always carry a first-class ticket by keeping it healthy and strong. It’s not for nothing that the people from Crete and Okinawa climb trees well into their 90s.

9) Keep Your Mouth Shut
Some people talk too much. Avoid being too verbose. Sometimes, silence speaks more eloquently than words. Miles Davis was right when he explained to some know-it-all that the space between notes is silence. The melody of his music is carried on the back of the absence of sound.

10) Keep Good Friends
Real friends are hard to find. Nurture friendships that make your life more wonderful and meaningful. Truly poor is the man who has no genuine friends.

11) Keep Great Memories
Each day you breath, you have the power to leave a potent legacy. Memories of cherished moments stand out and are more valuable than a jeweled necklace. When you live each moment beautifully, you string together these magical episodes and they truly sparkle. Just ask Jimmy Stewart. It’s a wonderful life.

Joseph_career-planning_MBA-coaching-Paris
“Because inner elegance is timeless…”

12) Keep A Journal
Writing a journal is therapeutic. It allows you to speak to your inner being. Jot down your dreams and aspirations. Inspiration and strength are nourished in the manure of experience. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

13) Keep Giving Thanks
Not many people say grace before meals these days. Yet giving thanks builds a positive energy frequency and feeds the power of bringing more abundance into your life. Remember, the story of “the glass is always half full“. So which part of the glass are you staring at?

14) Keep Going Forward
Even if you scream, Stop the world I want to get off, this is not happening. Learn to be comfortable with change. Emotional baggage only weighs you down. Why not float like a butterfly? Mohammed Ali did.

15) Keep Out Of Danger
Most of us are not thrill seekers. If you love extreme sports, go for it. However, there is no need to seek out trouble unless you are a danger junkie. Life is full of surprises. You never know what fate has in store.

16) Keep Up The Good Work
Just as unhappiness feeds on itself, so does success. The more you do, the more you achieve; the more you achieve, the better you become. Success is the fruit of your engagement. Enjoy the process. Pat yourself on the back.

Why act like a sloth weighing moss spores between your toes, when unleashing your inner dragon is more thrilling. Kundalini awakening is more fun than collecting postage stamps.

17) Keep Young
In our youth obsessed culture, many people think it’s all over once you hit thirty.
Such souls couldn’t be more wrong. This is where your journey first starts to pick up steam. Youth is an attitude. This does not mean you should neglect your body. Keep it strong and supple. One pundit I know stipulates: “It’s never too late to be what you might have been.”

ex_career-planning_MBA-coaching-Paris
“Because you want a touch of class…”

18) Keep On Dancing
Life is a dance through time and space. You can Cha-Cha, Tango, or Rock ‘n Roll. Embellish whatever music life plays for you. Pretend you’re the conductor. Now orchestrate your own soundtrack. Get excited and script the choreography, which pleases you best. When you’re light on your feet, you’ll feel happiness swell in your heart.

19) Keep On Loving
Without trying to sound silly, you wouldn’t be here if your parents didn’t hug each other in a tender embrace. Love makes the world go round and is the noblest sentiment a human being can share with another. So share the wealth. Best of all, you understand that real love is not about sex. It’s a state of consciousness.

20) Keep On Dreaming
Dreams keep us alive and vibrant even under the most challenging of circumstances. Master the power of manifestation and learn to turn your dreams into reality. Everything starts as an idea. Hard work and perseverance lubricate your actions. Before you know it, your achievements will start pouring in.

21) Keep On Hoping
Never lose hope. “Tomorrow is another day” as Scarlett O’Hara once quipped. However, you don’t live in tomorrow land. You only live now. It is in this moment you change your approach to career planning. It is the only time you every have. Think about this and not only will you agree, it will revolutionize your approach to life. Be all you can be and leave worrying to the dogs.

22) Keep On Believing
Belief is the mother load. What you believe you are is what you are. No matter what spiritual path you find yourself on, recognize that belief is not carved into clay tablets. They are energy vibrations, which can change. Make your beliefs a direct experience. Don’t just mechanically repeat the jargon we all learned as kids. Blind belief is what it sounds like. Simply blind. Strain your beliefs like a chai wallah makes tea.

Life is not a cake walk. Negative feelings and painful experiences happen to us all. They can be hard to handle. The best way to get through the sticker bushes is to forgive, forget, and move on. A heavy heart will only weigh you down. When I feel a bit down in the dumps, I quickly remember the advice I received from a Buddhist monk. Here’s what he said:

Feel comfortable with flowing water through your fingers. Do not envy the poor soul who tries to grasp the water by closing his or her fist. When such a person opens their fingers, they find their hands empty. Just be content to hold the sound of water in your heart.”

Article Title: 22 Beach Holiday Essential For Career Planning
Photographs: curated by ES

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

For further inspiration
Visit CAREO: Building One Success Story At A Time

Why Mentorship Must Embody Human Values

sell_mentorship_mba-admissions-consulting
“She sells seashells at the seashore…”

Mentorship is the path of true business leadership. It’s like opening the window and letting the light enter the human heart. Acting as a mentor is a responsibility many shirk. Either they feel they can’t spare the time or they feel there is no return on investment. If this is how you feel? However, reflect on how you are where you are today? It’s a no-brainer. You become the leader you are because others selflessly took the time to counsel and help you grow, stretch, and reach out of your comfort zone. Now is the time to give back. Not because you must, but because you want to. This feeling doesn’t originate in the head. It comes from the heart and is the true hallmark of business leadership.

Contrary to the popular view that most people are inherently selfish, self-centered and narcissistic, there are many who hold the opposite view. To succeed in any field, we all require role models. These unique personalities inspire us to do more, be more, and share more. Think of that great sage from Arunachala Mountain, Ramana Maharishi. He rarely spoke. He taught from the depths of silence because he understood the nature of mentorship.

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“When you cherish the words of wisdom in silence…”

This is particularly true in business education and career management. People in these fields have the power to help shape the destiny of another individual’s life. Remember, “A life is a terrible thing to waste.

Acting as a mentor or coach is not about bottom lines. Leave this to the humorless accountants who would outsource every person’s job to God knows where on behalf of their soulless masters. Mentorship is about building relationships, authenticity, and recognizing that we belong to one family, the human family. When you see each individual as part of your Self, how can you turn someone away? This is why many societies are in meltdown mode. They were brought up to believe that only the Darwinians survive. They have forgotten that zero sum games have only losers. The rest of us were inspired by respected and successful people, who helped change our corner of the world.

The Beauty Of Mentorship
There is nothing more beautiful than watching some else succeed when you facilitate a growth environment. Sharing your expertise and experience is not just a way to leave an invisible legacy. It challenges you to use your knowledge in a creative and dynamic format.

Although you may have no wish to become the Dalai Lama, the mentoring experience will deepen your sense of humility and appreciation of everything around you. In this sense, we act as bridges across cultures, diversity, and even generations. Each of us was born with a sense of uniqueness within set communities. It is when we step beyond these frontiers and confront what is different do we optimize our potential and see that once superficialities are stripped away, we are indeed all the same.

straw_mentorship_mba-admissions-consulting
“Because one size doesn’t fit all scenarios…”

This is a particularly useful skill set if we manage people. Managing people is not about giving orders like a drill Sargent having a bad hair day. It’s leading by example. Some individuals believe that a title empowers them to use authority and control to manipulate, humiliate, and intimidate. This is what one of my colleagues refers to as the France Telecom mentality. This is a casebook example on how not to manage or lead teams. Coercive leadership corrodes the heart and soul of the organization. It is a destructive path, which leads to negative outcomes and unproductive scenarios. Mentorship cannot flourish under these conditions.

A Question Of Balance
Mentorship requires an open heart. Having an open heart does not imply as Cole Porter wrote, “anything goes”. It demands honest criticism, which enhances the role of the protégé through guidance. Putting somebody down is not criticism. It is an exercise in bad behavior and at best stupidity. Demonstrate to junior colleagues that improvement comes through determination and the willingness to adjust by being pragmatic.

gil_mentorship_mba-admissions-consulting
“Because nobody lives on Gilligan’s Island…”

Fostering and retaining talent in any group demands a light hand not a hammer blow to an individual’s head. By providing a support network, careful planning, and implementation systems establish a series of reachable benchmarks. When you walk this path, you are building confidence. Remember that line in Skyfall: “Youth is no guarantee of innovation; Age is no guarantee of wisdom.” What is required is balance as the Buddha would say.

When people reach out, they help one another. Ultimately the path of mentorship gives satisfaction to everyone. Changing somebody’s life by providing them with the tools to build a successful future is beautiful indeed.

Article Title: Why Mentorship Must Embody Human Values
Photographs: curated by ES

About The Author
Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

For further inspiration
Visit CAREO: Building One Success Story At A Time

Business Education: I’ve Got My Brand On You

monk_brand_education_mba-coaching-paris
“Because you love the theme music…”

Talk brand with someone and you think FMCG or fashion. However, the same concept of brand, identity, logo, and ethos goes into fueling the personality and the culture of an academic institution. Considering the fierce competition among business schools for qualified talent then you begin to get the bigger picture. Private or public, educational institutions strive to constantly differentiate themselves. When you add in how much it costs for an education today, it’s no wonder these schools put so much into marketing their brand.

Clearly, the target audience for the most part are the parents who must either co-sign loans or cough up huge bags of cash. The alternatives to pedigree in our times are not for the weak hearted. You can go it alone as many entrepreneurs demonstrate. However, for the vast majority, education is the track to get you the credentials you need no matter what career path you choose to embark on.

peony_brand_education_mba-coaching-paris
“Because an image is worth a thousand words…”

Take the case of Babson College located just outside of Boston. Many pundits have never heard of this institution, and yet it fosters a strong identity and pull particularly for entrepreneurs. Listen to how they describe themselves: “Immersed in business, engaged in liberal arts”. Quite a mouthful don’t you think?

With many people calling into question the high costs of education, parents are demanding that their offspring have salable skills upon graduation. Your classic humanities education has fallen victim to our very unequal times.

The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Troy, N.Y.) uses another calling card: “Why not change the world?” Clearly, someone at this school has read Gandhi or at least remembers Steve Jobs. Will this quote resonate with the majority of high school seniors looking to apply? I think not. Students for the most part are not so high minded. Many are idealistic. Most are pragmatic and some are hustlers. With hi-tech and instant fame on the brain, certain students feel they can ride a wave to glory like Mark Zuckerberg.

To meet another educational niche, there has been another category of educational institutions. Enter the For-Profit category best exemplified by the University of Phoenix. This school carved out its path within the market by offering options other schools chose not to such as evening classes, flexible scheduling, a social network, and online classes. As a pioneer in its field, UP has been leading the For-Profit pack for 20 years. It also became a template for other savvy business people looking to make big bucks from education.

Education is clearly not seen today as it was in the past. It has become a commodity and in some cases a luxury brand must have. Europe for example offers many For-Profit institutions. They compete alongside the highly visible schools. Their drawing card? Integrate internships into the academic curriculum and just about promise everyone a job upon graduation. For anxious parents, this is a big attraction.

For The Love Of Ivy
The ultimate dream education for many Americans and even overseas students is to attend an Ivy League school. True the standards are tops, the curriculum compelling, and the schools in this group offer an unparalleled network of resources and opportunities. The odds for admitted applicants is steep. Even with the right credentials, grades, and extracurricular activities most applicants are denied admissions.

The harder it is to get in, the more people want to buy the brand. Despite their instant brand name recognition, even these top notch schools spend millions to promote their brand. There names are obvious: Princeton, Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Dartmouth, Brown, and the University of Pennsylvania. Attend one of these institutions, and you are set for life so each school claims. True, you certainly start off life on the right foot.

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“Because you love luxury brands…”

So You Want To Be A Designer
Another basket of academic institutions include fashion and design schools. Previously some of these institutions were seen as vocational schools. Not any longer. Some consider these schools the royal road to creative directors and designers. Considering the appeal of luxury brands and anything to do with fashion and glitz, these schools offer many attractive options to future students. These schools include Parson School For Design (NYC) and Saint Martin’s (London).

The Issue Of Public Schools
Public schools in the American meaning of he term means a university funded by the individual states. In Europe, they are funded by their constituent governments. The quality of education varies from state to state and from country to country.

For example UC-Berkely, UCLA, University of Michigan, and the University of Virginia stand out as academic powerhouses. Their major attraction is the cost is less. In France, the university system is seen as worn out and chaotic. Students of means choose Prepa and then a Grande Ecole if they can get admitted. Others go the For-Profit route, if their parents can foot the bill.

Emotional Attachment
Brand management at any school revolves around establishing an esprit du corp. Alumni help foster the brand within corporations, and in the case of the USA, donate generously to their institutions later in life.

The Challenges
As the price of education continues to skyrocket, schools need to justify their purpose, fine tune their recruiting, and make every aspect of academic life, the faculty, and administration vibrate the brand. Top schools have no issue with this. Middling schools find this harder to accomplish, and For-Profits need to change their mentality that their faculty and staff are cheap labor and essentially cannon fodder.

Building and sustaining a brand, any brand, requires an innate understanding of human psychology, the actual market, and how you can make your institution stand apart from a highly saturated sector. Education for previous generations was first seen as a privilege. Then it was seen as a constitutional right. Now, it is seen in many circles as a luxury.

So what are the schools selling? What is the value proposition to coin a phrase? Is it knowledge? Is it an experience? Is it a right-of-passage? Or is it a paid systematic service to put their clients into decent and well paid paths to sustainable employment? (Notice, I did not use the term students. This should tell you something about how the price of education has morphed in the 21st century.)

Recently, The Guardian held a roundtable in association with Purpose, a brand communications consultancy. Their debate was conducted under Chatham House rules, which allows remarks to be reported without attribution to encourage a frank discussion, producing compelling recommendations. Here’s what they concluded:

• Focus on core values such as academic integrity that links teaching, research and scholarship. Offer business-friendly courses with employability appeal. Deliver a positive student experience.

• Target communications at parents as well as students

• Involve faculty as much as possible. Their enthusiasm can often bring big dividends when they are valued.

• Highlight student testimonies in university marketing materials

• Maximize social media influence and reach

bridge_brand_education_mba-coaching-paris
“When you recognize the power of brand…”

The Case Of The 2 Ronnies

• New Frontiers School Board Continuing Education
(Montreal, Canada)
NFSB wanted to bolster enrollment and student engagement. Over a period of 12 months, The Watershed Media conducted an extensive communications audit. They developed a blueprint for an online and offline marketing plan. Then, they executed a new digital and social media strategy with a invigorated brand. On the basis of their investigation, they recognized that success of the brand hinged on fostering intimacy and dialogue between the school and its students in an honest and authentic way.

TWM injected the brand with a personal narrative that celebrated the theme of overcoming adversity and breaking through.

I Choose Me” and the “Journey Begins With You” were conversational brand elements that nurtured the empathetic quality that were the hallmarks of the school.

They also revitalized the website from the ground up, focusing on a modern image that gave its users clear information, helped them make informed decisions about their future, and then act on those decisions through online conversion tools. The Watershed complemented student tools with community resources that would make the NFSB a valued asset. Equally important was their work helping NFSB shift the marketing culture at the school and discover their shared capacity to influence change through everyday inter-actions.

  • Ramapo College of New Jersey (USA)
    The brand strategy was conceived and implemented by Words & Pictures Creative Service. The goal was to create an image campaign, featuring print and radio.

    The campaign harnessed successful, famous, and historical people who “could have been” Ramapo students. Welcome Shakespeare, Marie Curie, Andrew Carnegie, and Booker T. Washington. The chosen personalities represented the different schools at the College. This campaign elevated the College to a place where “some of the greatest minds in history could have started their futures” and where “the great young minds of today could start their futures.”

    Results: Ramapo College experienced direct benefits. The image building exercise worked wonders. Four years later, a follow-up survey was conducted by Eagleton. There was a dramatic increase in public awareness and improved perception of the school:

  • Ranked No.1 public comprehensive college by USNews in consecutive years. Combined SAT scores rose from 1120 to 1180
  • HS rankings moved from top 24% to top 17%
  • Full-time residential undergrads increased from 52% to 60%. Retention rate: first to second year increased from 82.4% to 89.4%
  • Retention rate: second to third year increased from 68% to 74.8% (currently,80%) Graduation rate: 42.75 to 62.3% (well over national average)
  • First-time donors increased by 35%
    (The advertising campaign received industry and CASE awards for its ingeniousness and creativity.)

    Conclusion
    Educational institutions to survive and prosper need to channel their efforts where their strengths lie. Differentiation should be more than hollow words, slogans, and the usual dead leaf catalogues. As the tools of the trade change so must the communications strategy to make the brand stay true to its real mission. In this way, a unique vision can be marketing via authenticity.

    Article Title: Business Education: I’ve Got My Brand On You
    Photographs: curated by ES

    About The Author
    James D. Roumeliotis is a regular contributor to CAREO. He is a brand management specialist and lives in Montreal.

    For further inspiration
    Visit our: blog

  • Business Success: When Is The Best Time To Apply For An MBA

    contem_mba-coaching-paris_mba-admissions-paris
    “Because you ready to make the leap…”

    If you are serious about an MBA, then our advice is do it. There are excellent choices. Depending on your status, there are a host of programs to match your aspirations. Don’t just consider the usual suspects. Think outside the box. Top European business schools are world class. Whether you want to study in Europe is another issue. Australia and Asia also have excellent options.

    dylan_mba-coaching-paris_mba-admissions-paris
    “Gather round MBA candidates from across the land…”

    Here are a few keys to consider:
    * Eleven of the top 100 programmes cost +$100k in the USA. European programs are a bargain in comparison.

    * In India and China, many MBA candidates prefer to stay at home. Cost is one factor. Recent MBA grads testify that the Asia-Pacific region offers the best job opportunities. Is it any wonder that non-Asians are looking for alternative solutions?

    Profiling
    The traditional MBA degree program still dominates the North American market. Part of this is historical. Schools continue to recalibrate the age groups they want to attract. Young and recent undergrads are solicited to apply sooner. If you are 27-30, do you want to study with 21-22 year olds? Most don’t. Simply put, they prefer to be with their peers.

    In Europe, there have also been drastic shifts. Pre-experience Masters in Management degrees still dominate. However, change is afoot. This has more to do with how the business education system is built rather than a degree preference. For example in France, business school students within the “Grandes Ecoles” system are all awarded a Masters degree.

    success_mba-coaching-paris_mba-admissions-paris
    “Because we’ve got you covered…”

    Is this the equivalent of an “American” masters? Clearly it is not. However, the Europeans have blended the undergrad curriculum with the masters. Some students therefore, do not feel the immediate need to do an MBA.

    First, when they graduate they are older than their North American counterparts. Secondly, these programs have required internship components built into their education cursus. Some benefit from Erasmus exchange programs. European partnerships with leading Asian institutions have also created a two-way traffic, giving students exposure and internships in constituent countries.

    Europeans who do decide to pursue an MBA have a different professional requirements. They tend to be +26 and know where they want to push their careers. They do not want nor need a 2-year program. Schools such as INSEAD, IMD, and IE Business School offer one-year accelerated programs to meet this demand. Some Europeans wait until their thirties before seeking an MBA. These candidates opt for an EMBA.

    Asian MBAs
    Although the Americans invented the MBA curriculum, global audiences are looking for different variants of program delivery. Take ISB (Hyderabad) and Ceibs (China) for example. The Indian School of Management in Hydrabad offers a great education, placing grads in leading firms from Mumbai to Bangalore.

    Ceibs is clearly the business school beacon in China. If you really want to capitalise on doing business in China, then perhaps you should be here.

    These changes are forcing more American business schools to start changing their business models. The Dean of Columbia Business School in New York was quoted stating: “I think people may want to get an MBA in a slightly different way”. Clearly the dean was referring to another trend, which is gathering steam: blending classroom-based learning with online teaching.

    Online Options
    Kenan-Flagler at UNC launched MBA@UNC in 2011. Is it successful? Ask UNC for direct feedback. Online learning is not for everyone. Another key issue the business schools are grappling with deals with culture. What impact does culture have on teaching business? As one analyst puts it, “business schools will need to move from content to the context in which the business operates”.

    There is much food for thought here.

    stride_mba-coaching-paris_mba-admissions-paris
    “Because you want to take this challenge in stride…”

    Up Close & Personal
    The current dean at Stanford GSB, Garth Saloner, who was appointed in 2009 has been responsible for instituting sweeping reforms and changes. The key term here is his personalized approach. This is something many business schools still don’t get. If you create a factory, you get factory workers. A personalized approach to education delivers people who are innovative, creative, and go on to do amazing things.

    Just to prove my point, Stanford GSB has the smallest class size of any American MBA: 397. That’s less than half the class size of either Harvard or Wharton. Their career services department is outstanding with facilities second to none. Perhaps, Stanford will become the business education template of what a business school can become if it puts its mind into generating real business leadership.

    Coursera
    Just think, a revolutionary course delivery system has left the Stanford entrepreneurial incubator. Tom Freidman of the New York Times waxed lyrically over Coursera, which is an NGO dedicated to delivering free classes online.

    That’s right folks: F-R-E-E!

    The catch is that there is no credit or pedigree. However, the plus side is quite impressive. We stand on the cusp of a complete rethink on the value of education and its delivery to those who do not possess the financial means to buy their pedigree.

    Join the conversation. Let us know if you are applying for an MBA. Better still, send us an email. We can help you meet your MBA targets.

    Article Title: Business Success: When Is The Best Time To Apply For An MBA
    Photographs curated by ES

    About The Author
    Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

    For further inspiration
    Visit CAREO: Building One Success Story At A Time

    How To Gain A New Sense Of Harmonics

    drinks_MBA-coaching-paris_harmonics
    “Because choosing the right cocktail is not enough…”

    According to the New York Times, more MBA candidates are hiring coaches in order to learn to be audacious. Rather than creating a more level playing field, the advantage has shifted to those MBA candidates savvy enough to engage professional assistance. So what should you do? Perhaps the time has come to contact MBA coaching Paris: CAREO.

    It is no longer enough to have an excellent track record. This has become a sine quo non. Bog standard won’t get you accepted. You will need to be audacious. You will need to know how to differentiate your profile. So we’ve decided to cut out some of the guesswork and give you a leg up. Start by following the steps listed below Get inspired, and your MBA application will stand out like a diamond in the window of Cartier.

    | Step 1: Choosing The Best Business Schools|
    Choosing the best business schools is easier said than done. We advise consulting the rankings such as those cited in the FT, US News, and BusinessWeek. Recognize that rankings are essentially beauty contests. However, the rankings are a good place to start and identify where you think you might want to be. Some candidates prefer a one year program and others prefer a two year program.

    Identity between 4-6 MBA programs geared to your professional objectives. Sometimes, the usual suspects are not necessarily the best fit. Besides investigating online, which is relatively an easy affair, try to visit the campuses you hope to enroll in. MBA campus culture varies at each business school. Get beyond the cocktail-marketing brochures. Get in touch with real alumni. Contact the school and ask to speak either with admissions officers or the school administration. Feel out your prospects. You are about to embark on a marketing offensive in a highly competitive and saturated market.

    | Step 2: Analyze Your Profile |
    Conduct a type of SWOT Analysis of your profile. Identify your strengths both inside and outside the workplace. Try to list points that make your candidacy shine. Be clear in your mind as to what you hope to achieve. List your real developmental needs. What do you really want to gain from an MBA aside from acquiring another diploma? You will need to build a strong case as to why the schools should accept you rather than someone else with a similar profile.

    smoke_ma-coaching-paris
    “When you’re still undecided…”

    | Step 3: Handling The Entrance Exams |
    Make yourself a study agenda for the required entrance exams, which concern you. For the majority of MBA candidates, this means tackling the GMAT & TOEFL. The number of schools, which will accept your profile without these exams, is extremely limited. Test prep should be taken seriously. Plan on taking the exams more than once. Most people do.

    | Step 4: How To Study |
    Determine whether you can prepare by yourself or need help. Most people enroll in organized Test Prep centers where large group classes are the norm. Some organizations are better than others. Look at the results of the organization you wish to enroll. The quality of the teachers coupled to your own sweat equity will determine your test prep success. The key here is practice, practice, and yes, practice. Average GMAT scores at the top MBAs are +680 (GMAT) & +105 (TOEFL).

    | Step 5: Learn To Build Persuasive Essays |
    Once the GMAT & TOEFL are out of the way, the time has come to tackle the MBA essays. The essays must engage. Think storyline. Build the type of content, which makes your profile stand apart. Everyone of us is unique. However, as George Orwell might have said, “Some of us are more unique than others”. Differentiators will set your MBA application apart from the pack.

    With so many applicants, the schools are spoiled for choice. Make sure that your professional objectives are clear and concise. One way to convince the Admissions Committee is to go outside the box with subjects on non-work related activities, which demonstrate your vision, achievements, and skills.

    Most schools field different questions. This is done on purpose so that you do not copy and paste. Getting the essays right is not just about writing. Essay writing is really an exercise in strategic marketing to a highly targeted constituent audience. The MBA Admissions Committees will give you no slack. Therefore, you must be persuasive.

    | Step 6: How To Train For Your Interview |
    Interviews are not required for every MBA applicant. However, most of the top schools have made this part of the MBA application process. The point is to meet the person behind the written word. To go to an interview unprepared is sudden death. We advise serious training with someone in person. Practice until you are comfortable and can manage the unexpected.

    | Step 7: Find A Unique Sense Of Purpose |
    For inspiration, take Mohammed Ali’s advice: “Float like a butterfly and sting like a bee.

    Although you can sting, you should prefer to float like a butterfly. Manifest your own beatitude. Believe that you can give joy to many. By doing so, you will show that you have the perception to think beyond your own sand box. A butterfly serves its purpose with a fruitful and productive life. You can too. It is just a question of direction and will. As human beings, we feel the need to do more than just drive to the office in the morning doing the same old, same old.

    trane_mba-coaching-paris
    “When you’re looking for a whole new sense of harmonics…”

    Many of us are truly blessed and do not lack a sense of prosperity. Wealth is such an open-ended term. It is not about bags of gold. It is about health, humour, and love. As they say in social media: share the wealth. Prosperity is about the privilege to access opportunity. Harvest the resources at our command. It does not mean living in a dwelling so large that you need a GPS to find you’re way from room to room.

    There is a beautiful verse in Sanskrit, which will give you a whole new sense of harmonics. It is from the Gunaratna of Bhavabhuti:

    “For the wicked, knowledge is used for conflict or war, wealth is for pride and vanity, and strength and power are used to oppress or torture others. For a noble person, it is completely different: Education is for knowledge to make everything better, wealth is for charity, and strength or power is solely for protection.”

    There is much food for thought here.

    I therefore urge you, if you are planning to do an MBA: Become audacious. Jump and be free of the expectations of others. Find your true fulfilment and a transformational educational experience in the bargain. If you have wealth or resources, then share them with those in real need. If you are strong and have a sense of purpose, then use your strengths in the service of your community. By doing so, you hold the keys to business leadership in the real meaning of the term.

    (If you enjoyed this article, please click the thumbs up icon and let us know! Be social & share.)

    Article Title: How To Gain A New Sense Of Harmonics
    Photographs: curated by ES

    About The Author
    Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

    For further inspiration
    Visit CAREO:

    An MBA Coach’s Content Strategist Playbook

    meeting_mba-coaching-paris
    “Building one success story at a time…”

    In recent conversations at an impromptu forum, I found myself challenged by several professionals contemplating the use of MBA Admissions consultants. It was interesting what they said.

    One flannel suited chap blithely stated, “MBA Admissions consultants are for losers. I have no interest. Besides, they’re costly and make promises they cannot fulfill.

    Another Chanel suited figure added, “You would think that. However, I have it on good authority that a great consultant can give you a leg up. Given the intense competition to get accepted, I want the best shot I can get.

    Now, please understand I am not trying to change people’s minds. I’d rather discuss why strategic planning can make your career aspirations happen. In my experience, I found that the terms of engagement must be personalized and well thought out. Were I an MBA candidate, I would relish an actionable step-by-step roadmap to eliminate the guesswork and the anxiety.

    How To Choose
    There is not one road to get accepted to a top MBA. The more savvy MBA candidate realizes that the MBA Admissions game has changed. Professional counsel can deliver quantifiable results when you know what you are buying. The best advice I can give to someone shopping around for help is to choose an organization you feel comfortable partnering with.

    Many firms on the market peddling services are just coaching factories. Is this what you want? Or do you prefer the counsel of professionals who really care about you?

    The Value Proposition
    Fees vary among service providers, but the variations are negligible. Some firms offer packages. Others charge by the hour. Packages appear to be the best deal with their all inclusive features. However, sometimes an hourly rate is more appropriate. Why pay for something you won’t take advantage of?

    robot_mba-coaching-paris
    “Because everyone needs a personalized game plan…”

    Opportunities
    To the uninitiated, the entire MBA application process appears as an exercise in witchcraft. The magic is hard work. To not loose time, work with people who understand how the admissions process actually works. Working with a former admissions officer is not guarantee that you will be accepted at Harvard or Stanford. What you really need is content strategist familiar with the science of personal brand management.

    So what should an MBA Admissions consultant provide?
    Outstanding knowledge of the business education industry. Secondly, they should match your aspirations with your career objectives. Sometimes, there is no point to just applying to the top 4 business schools unless your credentials are exceptional. Choosing the most appropriate target schools is the first key step to success.

    This is where content marketing can help you make the sale. An expert can position your pitch on the basis of what you’ve actually done. Most essays or personal statements submitted to the leading MBA programs read like they were written by an admissions consultant. Don’t fall into this trap. Avoid cliches and flamboyant prose.

    Some of us are advised by friends or family. This may work for you. Our advice is to choose professional counsel with discretion. Make sure that the firm you work with actually cares about you and your ambitions. Service must be personalized to be effective. Otherwise, it is bog standard and a waste of time and resources.

    blac_mba-coaching-paris
    “Yes, I’d like to book an appointment…”

    Where most MBA candidates make mistakes is when they try to cut corners. So, they write their own essays. Afterward, they approach an MBA Admissions consultant, asking for a quick edit. Why pay someone when you have a spelling & grammar check on your computer? What you really need is powerful feedback that generates original ideas to brand your MBA application.

    Considering the cost of an MBA, don’t you think it is worth the investment to go all in? We do. For that reason, we’ve listed below a few suggestions to get you started:

    7 Pointers From The Content Strategist Playbook
    1. Assessment
    Assess your strengths and weaknesses. List the key attributes which makes your profile distinctive. To be successful, you will need to highlight your UQ (uniqueness quotient). Each one of us is distinctive. However, as George Orwell might have stipulated, some of us are more unique than others.

    2. Strategic Plan
    Outline a strategy, confirm your call to action, scalability, and opportunities. Start with a professional evaluation from your current employer. Next draw up a target list of desirable business schools. Keep abreast of deadlines, the financials, recommenders to be selected and contacted.

    3. Personal Brand DevelopmentHave you identified the DNA of your personal brand? If not, find someone who can assist you. It will make your essays personal as well as professional. The business schools are seeking a well rounded and cultured audience. To learn more, study the culture and the curriculum. By doing so, you will better understand your target market audience.

    4. Lay An Appropriate Foundation
    It’s not enough to simply put up your name on essays someone wrote on your behalf and call it a day! Make your working relationship with an MBA Admissions consultant a partnership.

    5.Stand Out
    Apply strategies, which make your profile stand out. Evangelizing your personal brand is only part of the picture. You will need a compelling storyline to make your profile stand out from the crowd.

    success_mba-coaching-paris
    “Because we’ve got you covered…”

    6. Contact Alumni
    Speak with alumni. The more recent the alum, the more valuable their insight will be on how the school currently operates. It is always wise to visit the campus and attend an information session when feasible.

    7. The Interview
    When you are invited to an interview, you are almost there. Leave nothing to chance. Train with an communications specialist used to handling the press. If they’ve trained CEOs, they can certainly train you. Remember, this is when you must seal the deal.

    If you have questions, contact CAREO for a free professional evaluation.

    (If you have enjoyed this article, please click the thumbs up icon and let us know! Be social & share.)

    Article Title: MBA Coaching: The Ultimate Content Strategist Playbook
    Photographs: curated by ES

    About The Author
    Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

    For further inspiration
    Visit CAREO: Life In The Fast Lane

    MBA Admissions: Getting Started? Fast Track Your MBA !

    ankle_mba-admissions
    “With our MBA Admissions Consulting services, you can be on easy street…”

    Years ago, we pioneered a series of MBA Admissions strategies to fast track any MBA candidate’s applications to the top business schools. By doing so, we removed the guesswork and counseled MBA wannabes to foster their personal brand. I reasoned that successful branding strategies used in the corporate world could work just as well for an individual. When I launched CAREO, I was pleased to see our clients empowered with the opportunity to fulfill their professional MBA aspirations.

    As a boutique MBA Admissions consultancy, we specialize in personalized attention. Why loose time or make mistakes? Our holistic approach will maximize your an MBA admissions with a positive outcome. I have outlined below the advantages of partnering with us as your personal brand and MBA admissions evangelists.

    carmen_mba-admissions
    “Why leave your future to chance…”

    1. Personalized Service
    We start by helping you harmonize your professional aspirations with your personal goals. Our holistic approach to MBA admissions begins by getting to know you. We help you target the most appropriate MBA programs. With a workable timeline and actionable plan, you are ready to take on the world.

    2. Establishing An Action Plan
    With our comprehensive approach to business school admissions, why not take advantage of services we pioneered. Once you sign-up, we plan your strategy, create a PowerCV, give you feedback, and offer suggestions on what to include in your essays.

    Once your target MBA programs are selected, we examine the details and attack the requirements. With guidance each step of the way, success lies in your hands.

    3. MBA Essay Analysis
    Don’t kid yourself. You can have a brilliant track record and a great GMAT and still be rejected. Your MBA essays must be powerful and persuasive. We’ll show you how to write compelling stories to make your essays stand out. Constructive feedback guarantees that what you submit will portray your candidacy in the best light.

    A word of caution: Do not worry about the competition. It is pointless. What you can do however, is to manage the assets you have on your side. Having a strong personal brand will mark out your profile for serious consideration. Let our keen marketing strategists show you how. The sweat equity is on us.

    4. MBA Application Procedures
    Application creation also demands a well-crafted CV, selecting and preparing the ideal recommenders corresponding to your MBA targets. Rely on us to empower your CV, navigate your essay drafts, whilst polishing them like the diamonds you can see at Cartier. Getting a ‘yes’ on your MBA Admissions is so much easier.

    5. The Final Touches
    Just when you think the process is over, there is always one last thing to do. Count on our feedback sessions and interview training. When you are called to interview, you will have the confidence to shine like a star.

    Getting Started? Fast Track Your MBA Admissions!
    Let’s Talk. Email us directly and submit your contact details. Let’s discuss your requirements. We offer both package rates and hourly fees. Choose the option best suited to your schedule.

    FOR A FREE PROFILE EVALUATION
    CONTACT US NOW & GET STARTED

    For further tips and inspiration: http://www.whitefieldconsulting.com

    MBA Admissions: How To Master Personal Branding

    tired_personal-branding-mba-admissions-requirements
    “Because you’re worth it…”

    If you are headed over the cliff driving a vintage Vet, then clearly you are not thinking about personal branding. Howling Wolf is belting out a tune and the wind is in your hair. Is this what we need to do to get career clarity? You know that if nothing is done, there will be fanfare but not fluttering banners and trumpets. Taking five is the logical thing to do under these conditions of personal branding.

    You want to stop or at least slow your emotions down. Somehow your nerves freeze and you cannot find the control panel. This is the exact predicament professionals find themselves in when it comes to career change. They are afraid to call out. Further education is probably indicated according to some reports in the press. We just need a nudge in the right direction.

    Perhaps the sort of personal branding we need is to add an MBA to our quiver. MBA Admissions however has a specific set of requirements. Personal branding techniques can kick off the process with a professional evaluation. Call it a SWOT analysis of your career evolution to date. It also indicates that an overdue change in attitude is in order.

    Start by giving thanks for what you have and who you are. Self love is not narcissistic. It demonstrates self appreciation. The first step to personal branding is as simple as that. You do not need to wear a necklace of garlic to ward off demons of your own making.

    Visualization techniques are quite persuasive. Ask anyone who practices yoga. If you know where you would like to be, then you can navigate your Ferrari to any destination with safety.

    road_personal-brand-management
    “When life is more than a road movie…”

    One of our clients said recently that she wanted to move into management consulting. She was afraid however,that her background in operational marketing was inappropriate. From the start her problem was clear. She had not convinced herself that her goal was attainable. She was even unsure whether an MBA was the best way forward. If you don’t convince yourself, how do you expect to convince somebody else? The fine art of persuasion as they say in personal branding, begins at home.

    At our first meeting, we talked through her goals. By cutting away the emotional dross, she saw the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. Not only was there a solution; there were several. Afterward, we trained and she regained her composure. Did she loose her self confidence? Not really; It was misplaced. By clearing her mind, her vision became tangible.

    Now, she could taste success. It was just a question of enacting an action plan. Her bridge to nowhere had no real foundation. Since it had been self-imposed, it was easily destroyed. It was nothing more than a shadow. If you find yourself at a similar crossroad in personal brand management then answer the following question: Where does the source of your vision come from?

    The answer lies inside your heart, but we often need a catalyst to make our vision concrete. Don’t make the cardinal mistake that Nasruddin did. He went out of his house looking for light in the pitch of night while he held a torch in his hands. The right catalyst enables you to build a strategic road map. An actionable plan delineates developmental needs. Personal brand management also highlights your strengths for future success.

    Any one can point out what you might have done, but this is a fruitless exercise, which creates a state of dependence. By expressing your career goals in a concise fashion, you gain the root of leadership, which lies at the core of all professional endeavors. You will feel a sense of freedom and lightness of being. After that applying for a top MBA becomes a snap if this is what you choose to do.

    Article Title: MBA Admissions: How To Master Personal Branding
    Photographs: curated by ES

    About The Author
    Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

    For further inspiration
    Visit CAREO Whitefield Consulting Worldwide

    How To Choose The Best Business School

    dog_business-education
    “Because you want to be the top dog…”

    Business Education is more than gaining a degree. Given the designer price tags, many candidates are asking what type of business education is the best investment. If you have the credentials, your choice is extensive. A great business school education gives students a transformational experience. The mediocre ones are just degree factories.

    The corporate world considers business education essential. Think of it as your union card to well-paid employment. Unlike other academic degrees, you can still succeed in business without an MBA. However, you must have drive and determination. If you choose this road, you need to be very savvy, an opportunist and probably an entrepreneur at heart. Perhaps one day, Bill Gates might teach “How To Grab Opportunity” at HBS. Pundits know that real business knowledge is gained in the workplace.

    repp_business-education
    “Because you don’t want to be an exile on Main Street…”

    A great school will offer you personalized attention and a curriculum tailored to your career aspirations. Secondly, you can tap exclusive networks the smaller fry cannot offer. Mediocre schools simply don’t have the intellectual firepower, financial resources or the prestigious alum networks. “Access to great job offers is the price of MBA admissions”, according to one of my colleagues.

    Evaluating Business School Rankings
    Understand that rankings are glorified beauty contests. They are bolstered by trade fairs and glossy brochures. Each business school attempts to promote leadership, sustainability, ethics, entrepreneurship, and social media. Some schools get it. Others just languish in their own marketing rhetoric.

    The top 25 business schools remain in the same cluster year after year. Appearances are made by other schools periodically. Afterward, they drop back into relative obscurity. From our standpoint, forget the rankings. Focus on post-grad salary projections and job placement.

    tulips_business-education
    “Because a great business education is more than hearts ‘n flowers…”

    Considering European Programs
    Fifteen years ago, France and Spain languished in their own cultural myopia. Today, the landscape is different. Insead in France was always a major player. There are others now worthy of serious consideration: HEC, ESSEC, and ESCP.

    Spain features 3 top business schools, which include IE Business School, Iese, and ESADE. These programs are extremely attractive to Latin Americans. You don’t need to have an ancestral kinship to Iberian culture to benefit. Our counsel has always been to choose a business school in accordance with your needs, budget, and aspirations.

    Meeting Your Expectations
    Not meeting your objectives can cause a wave of negative emotions. This is not the moment to panic. Panic never helped anyone. If action is something you want, there is always a positive solution at hand. The best tactic is not to give in to fear. Fear stems from the insecurity. It generates confusion and prompts us to act rashly.

    Explore your options. Smart business school candidates should make a strategic action plan. Don’t forget to manage your time. Methodically calibrate each step of the application process and you will succeed.

    (If you enjoyed the above article, please click the thumbs up icon and let us know! Be social & share.)

    Article Title: How To Choose The Best Business School
    Photographs: curated by ES

    About The Author
    Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at RedHerring, a digital communications consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

    For further inspiration
    Visit RedHerring: Life In The Fast Lane

    Great CV Writing Is More Than You Think

    book_cv-career-writing
    “Because we all know the story of Minnie the Moocher…”

    Great CV writing is more than you think. A well written CV must influence and persuade because we all know the story of Minnie the Moocher. Like most professionals, I have written more resumes than I can shake a stick at. I’ve read more CVs than I care to mention. Frankly, knowing what to put on your CV is an invaluable asset. Just think, search engines will pick up your credentials more quickly if you build a targeted profile on LinkedIn.

    Learning how to write simple honest prose is almost a lost art. Most people cannot write well, let alone convince in a concise space. I admit, it is harder to let your personality shine through when you reduce your life to a series of bullet points. So why not take some pointers from the masters of content marketing?

    Each time I assess a hard copy CV, I start shaking my head. Why the usual chronological list of events? Why do I not feel the person and the power the person can execute for a particular job? Where does this person’s UQ (read uniqueness quotient) stand out?

    The reason is clear as moonshine: most CVs resemble cookies bought at a supermarket. They use the same tired words, share an identical structure, and read like the warning notices stuck in pharmaceutical products. Can you show how you react under adversity on a CV? Can you communicate the challenges you have overcome? What are your real accomplishments?

    perfect_cv-writing
    “Sometimes a stiff drink is indicated…”

    Think carefully: Do you own your career decisions (honestly)? How does a future employer interpret the usual catch phrases: team player, motivated, hard working, or innovative?

    Why not try another approach? Examine the 4 Ps before putting pencil to paper: personality, performance, persistence, & persuasion. Pretend you’re Bill Clinton. Snake charm and seduce through tightly controlled prose. Make someone want to meet you. Short sentences work wonders. Support strengths with concrete outcomes. Write with no fear of rejection. Forget apologies. Do not be defensive.

    Each stage in a person’s development will include and/or feature a different template to sell your expertise. Forget most online or book models. This is bog standard, and will not get your profile noticed.

    Hard Copy Options
    Which is better: a one or two page CV? Both have their advocates. Unless demanded, go for two. It will give you room to move. Assume the role you want to play. Express key attributes that are emotive and compelling. Use terms that prove that you can sell snow to the Aleutians. Forget the competition. You cannot control what someone else writes, but you can control what you do.

    Take control. Reducing your life story to two pages might seem demeaning. Note however, that this is a game. Play the game, make a strategy, and keep the freshly squeezed OJ going.

    Show your CV to people you trust. Get objective feedback. If you can obtain professional assistance, do so. Don’t stint. Career management is about gaining the tools to empower yourself. It is a perfect path to self-reliance. By doing so, your profile will stand out of a pile of rubbish like a diamond in the mud.

    (If you enjoyed this post, please click the thumbs up icon. Be social & share!)

    Article Title: Great CV Writing Is More Than You Think
    Photographs: curated by ES

    About The Author
    Andrew Scharf shares enchanting stuff on the topics of marketing, innovation, talent development, coaching, enchantment, and craftsmanship. He is also the head Koi at CAREO, a career management consultancy under the WCW Group brand.

    For further inspiration
    Visit CAREO: Life In The Fast Lane