Random Acts of Kindness & Generosity

November 17th, 2015

Today I’m writing a different kind of post to my community.peace

The unspeakable atrocity in Paris has had a profound effect on many of us. There is reason to pause to become more purposeful: to find moments of gratitude and grace in these difficult times. As I walk around my own beautiful hometown, NYC, I can see the increased presence of police officers. Entering the Wall Street area to work with clients, I notice more barricades, less tourists and increased levels of special tactical teams in the area.

It would be easy to get lost in all of this and succumb to fear. But instead, I’m asking all of you to consider a far more radical strategy to stake your own claim on peace and freedom where you are now.

Will you join me in Operation Kindness? #operationkindness

Every day from now until the New Year, I am asking you to execute ONE random act of kindness in your world. Just one. It will cost you nothing other than the awareness that you are participating with intention.

As you walk into your office building thank the security detail for the job they do. On the subways smile at the transit police and wish them a peaceful day.

In your office, leave a post it on your colleagues’ desk that says, “I appreciate you” or “You’re amazing. Thanks for being on this team”.

Be willing to garner up your patience, stop your busy day, and listen intently to what others are saying to you. Look them in the eye and say, “I hear you.”

Organize a Team Kindness Day with your co-workers, where you randomly and somewhat secretly, spread some appreciation in the office and the community.

If you feel so moved, bring a homeless person and apple or orange.

Bake cookies for your children’s class, just because.

Hug a co-worker or the cashier at your grocery store.

Tell that mother you see struggling to round up her children that she’s doing a great job.

Kindness is what we all need at the moment. In that space of love and appreciation, fear melts, hearts warm and spirits feel free again.

Now isn’t that the kind of place you want to work and live?

Yes, me too.

Tweet with me about your random acts of kindness or the kindness you are experiencing from others. You can find me on Twitter @mariagamb and please use the hashtag #operationkindness

Are You Trying to Twist Their Arm?

September 9th, 2015

One of the biggest fallacies about leadership is that you can control others. Indeed, there is a myth that you can actually make them do what you want. You can make them buy into your ideas or wishes. You can tell them what to do and they will do it obediently, to the letter. You could try to twist their arms, but you will most likely have a human resources issue on your hands.

It’s a wish – or rather, a complete fantasy, which often times leaders buy into them selves. I’ve frequently had clients and colleagues over the years wonder why people just don’t do what they want, extolling “well, they’d be better off if they just did what I told them!” Laughter would then break out as the deliverer of said remark realizes they sound like a 5-year-old child not getting their way.

So, this is a reality check. You absolutely cannot make anyone do what you want them to do. However, you can do certain things and/or behave in certain manners that will inspire them to follow your directive and lead.

  1. Know who you are, what you do and how you do it – No matter who you are in the world, this is sage advice. It comes in handy at cocktail parties, dates and professionally when you’re seeking a job, selling an idea to a group or selling a product. It’s a timeless, simple skill that is oftentimes overlooked and underappreciated in our world of sizzle marketing and complex personal growth techniques.
  2. Not Everyone Will Hear You – Concentrate on the 20-30% of the people who can hear you and want to know more about your approach. If you keep trying to convince the other 70%-80% to listen, you’re focusing more on the negative and falling into the trap of begging to be liked. Forget it, as it’s a losing proposition. That 20-30% should be your ringleaders, or major influencers in your own department and surrounding ones.
  3. You cannot make anyone do anything, accept it – As I’ve said before, you can only inspire them to follow you. This is one of the hardest leadership lessons you’ll ever learn. People have free will. You cannot make anyone do anything. You also cannot change anyone, nor should you try. It’s not your job. Your job is to inspire others to be, do or have more than they currently have. If they want this, then provide them with the skills and tools to do so. Remember – they have advocates too.
  4. Be systematic and methodical – The truth is that people like structure. Human nature enjoys being able to work in a predictable manner within a structure that helps us to be safe. Not a vice-grip method, but one that is proven by a mentor to be successful. “Follow these steps and you will achieve the desired results. How do I know this? Because I’ve done it myself.” There’s a difference between the vice-grip way of leading people that makes them feel like “it’s my way or the highway” versus “this is what I know works, follow my lead for right now until you find your own footing”.
  5. Lead by example – Human beings are natural copycats. We see it everywhere in our culture, right down to men and women wearing the same outfits and colors, and eating whatever the latest trends may be. We naturally mirror those we admire and their behaviors, so be mindful of how you are being in the workplace. Eyes are always watching. It’s the easiest way to bring people on board to your way of being by showing them with your own actions, words and deeds.
  6. Treat Others with Dignity and Respect – Nothing gets others’ attention more than knowing that you are a leader who treats others with dignity and respect, even when you disagree with them. You show up on time, you back your team up and you never leave your colleagues hanging out on a limb. That shows that others matter to you and you’re invested in their success.

Of all the 6 tips I’ve just provided you with, the 6th is the most important. Who has your back? Your team leader does. When you operate in the manner of mentoring, advising, teaching and taking a genuine interest in others, you will receive loyalty and responsiveness back. This is because they will know that no matter what, you’ll be there for them, which means they will listen to you and follow your lead.

Inspire them. Let them know you are invested in them. Be an exceptional example to them, but be human too. If you do this, they will listen and they will follow you.

Leave your comments, questions and musings. I read every single one of them!

Are You Managing in a Fog?

May 5th, 2015

Jill walks into her office and slumps into her chair. The fog, that horrible fog, has returned. She mentally goes through a checklist and deems herself a horrible manager because she can’t seem to get her team to act like one, let alone move in the same direction.

What feels like a turf war is breaking out amongst her amazingly gifted, hand-selected team. She wonders why. What happened? It was all working not so long ago.

Jill seeks out her mentor, Elizabeth.

Elizabeth sympathizes and smiles compassionately. Then she adds, “Well, my team does the quiet subterfuge, no one is talking…with each other. They just do what they need to do and avoid one another.” They both sigh.

They are stuck in that foggy bog all manager and leaders inevitably encounter. People are people; they will become territorial either vocally or passively one-way or the other. The most common denominators of these types of situations come down to people neither knowing what’s expected of them nor feeling safe in their roles. These insecurities are normal. Of course, there’s a way through the fog to the other side of the clouds where the sun shines brightly, and the team
actually works together again.

  1. Set Your Foundation Up – Get clear on your values. Values are more than integrity or honesty, which are both great, but there are roughly 144 different values you can incorporate into your leadership foundation. Kofi Annan says it perfectly: “To live is to choose. But to choose well, you must know who you are and what you stand for, where you want to go and why you want to get there.” Not only do you need to know this, but so does your team.
  2. Tell Them What You Expect – Your team are a reflection of you. Therefore, it’s important that they are all in alignment with the values you may be instilling into your team. But the trick is, you have to tell them how you want them to action it. Meaning, if your value is innovation or curiosity, for example, you have to let them know that you value these attributes and you want them to consider completely out of the box options and offer at least one truly
    innovative solution up when they’re problem solving. You have now told them what you want, how you want it and given them permission to be innovative and/or curious. Remember, all expectations can be met if people know what they are.
  3. Tell Them What They’re Doing – One of the biggest management and leadership fails is not creating clear roles and responsibilities (R&R) for each team member. Sometimes an office can turn into a turf war. Other times it’s the hot potato way of working: “that’s not my job”. Be clear to everyone, in detail, what their role and responsibilities are both inside and outside of the team, as well as who they are to intersect with and engage as partners.
  4. Set Boundaries – Building on #3, explain that stepping outside of one’s territory is a violation of trust and will more times than not evoke a very negative reaction from the owner of the territory, or role, that you’re entering. To avoid this, boundaries of the R&R must be clear, but in the spirit of collaboration it’s important to ask others if they’d like your help, are open to an idea or opinion and more over, ask if they’d
    like to collaborate to find the solution/resolution. All of these opening questions give the territory/role owner the power to issue an invitation to the other party or grant permission. Don’t enter someone else’s territory without permission expecting that tea and biscuits will be waiting for you. But if one asks, chances are you may actually get that mochaccino from Starbucks at the next meeting.

We always have to remember that while the roles ultimately belong to the company and not the occupier of the role, they, however, are people. They will have a sense of ownership, which is tremendously important. However, without clarity of expectations and boundaries the fog will not lift.

We have a saying in my own home, which holds true at the office too:

All needs can be met, if I know what they are.

If you always consider this mantra each and every day, it will help you to not only lift the fog you’re watching, but also teach your team to embody this depth of engagement with everyone they work with too.

The manager and leader who take time to provide clarity will have a very focused team moving in the same direction: towards the end goal.

I’m So Busy…..But I’m Not Getting What I Want!!!

February 18th, 2015

The rally cries of many professionals today: “I’m so busy”. Which when pressed they can often feign that they are happy and successful. Yet deep down the silent tape running in their head completes the sentence with “but I’m not getting what I want.”

First, you have to take the time to actually truly, I mean really truly, know what it is that you want. We can wave our hands and say we do, but do you, really? Busy-ness doesn’t necessarily mean you’re driving towards your goals.

Recently a client told me about her challenges of needing to become more visible in her workplace so she could move up into another, more expansive leadership position at the company where she really loved working. But as she explained not only was it a corporate objective but her own. However, the inflection around the word “leadership” felt laden with annoyance. When I enquired, she simply said, “I really don’t want more responsibility” with a big sigh. “Well then why are you seeking something you clearly have a negative response to and don’t want?” She laughed and admitted there was an internal conflict. “Do you think that’s why I am not getting the stuff I need to get done to achieve this goal?”

There’s 3 parts to this epiphany.

  • You will never really drive, whole-heartedly, towards a goal that is in direct conflict with your hearts desire, ethics or belief system. That’s what’s called a “double bind”.
  • You may engage on the surface to be considered “in the mix” but often times there is not enough positive emotion (heart) in it to take you to the goal line.
  • Being “too busy” is often a smoke screen to avoid having to be fully engaged in the goal and/or project which would get you to the goal causing the conflict.

This is no different than the person who says they are going on a diet and only halfway commits to the program they select. Why? It could be they don’t feel safe in the world without the extra layer of protection. Or it could be something else that causes the conflict. The desire to move forward is nullified by the internal conflict causing a stalemate.

There are a few ways to overcome this self-imposed stalemate. How we communicate with ourselves is as important as how we communicate with others in the world.

  • Identify It – Identify what the conflict may be. That would mean the place where you’re not making progress and may be feeling frustration.
  • Reframe It – Those of you who know me, know this is an invaluable tool I use often. If, in this case, leadership means more responsibility you really don’t want, look to what is important and valuable to you. In this case, for this client, she loved teaching. I reminded her that a leader actually is someone who inspires others to do, be and have more than they currently do. Which can translate to teaching others (i.e her team or future teams) so they can do, be and have more at work and in their lives. She perked up! Now THAT made leadership a whole lot more enticing than thinking about paperwork and filling in time and attendance types of forms. Post this over your desk as a reminder. (Lisa hyperlink this to the graphic quotecovers image)
  • Reprioritize it with the Reframe in Mind – If the goal is now real and important to you and conveyed in a manner that tickles your sense of fulfillment or exploration then you will make time for it in your schedule.

I am not an organizational genius. All you have to do is look at my desk to know that this is not my best quality. However, what I can tell you is that when we are focused on a goal that is palatable to us, then break down the tasks into columns that reflect the goal with a reminder of the reframe we are using, our brains DO reorganize what is important.

Get clear what you want and why. Meaning, I want X so I can have Y. That’s your anchor. If there is a conflict you now have tools to over ride that hindrance. Never forget that there are times we will be very busy, but if this is a constant state, busy-ness may be a smoke screen to cover something else one may be avoiding.

What the Women at Kronos Know About Change

October 28th, 2014

A few weeks ago I have the privilege of flying to Atlanta to speak at Kronos Incs Annual Sales Conference. Part of that conference was segmented out for a Women’s summit. My audience was several hundred women who are committed to their growth, advancement and responsibility within this large organization. They were an amazing group. All discussions we had were couched around “change” and how to navigate it fearlessly, with grace and ease.

Change within any aspect of ones life can be difficult to navigate. Even those who crave change, beg for it and lament, “Well if this changed I’d be much happier” still find it painful. It may be true that even positive change would bring about happiness and fulfillment. The greater truth is that most people don’t like or feel comfortable when things around them change.

As human beings we like things to be familiar and predictable. Each individual requires a different level of familiarity and predictability in their lives. This is the dynamic, which makes life and ones existence feel safe. Even if what is predictable and familiar may be unhealthy, broken or painful.

As I explained this to the many groups over this past year, I am sometimes met with some blank stares. I notice resistance and could practically even hear some of the participants saying, “not me!” Perhaps you feel the same reading this piece.

So here goes:

o How many times have you dated the same person for longer than you knew was good for you just because it was familiar to you?

o How many times have you worn a pair of shoes that made your heels bleed because they were beautiful regardless of nearly crippling you?

o How often do you take the same route home from work, every day, 52 weeks a year?

o And how often do you utilize systems and methods you’ve always used in your work life just because that’s how “we’ve always done it”?

o Or criticized someone as practically being a heretic because they’ve introduced a new way of thinking, problem solving or executing a task?

The truth about any company and its people is that they must evolve to stay current and to move forward. That takes courage and flexibility. Evolution of anything comes down to the ability of those who can best take the next 3 steps.

1) Change to suit market or environment needs
2) Adapt methods, behaviors and attitudes to meet those market and environment needs
3) Grow as a byproduct of steps 1 and 2

A group that digs their heels in and tries to stand still will only be passed by. The world, the globe actually, continually spins. When we do not move forward we are literally passed by. Don’t let your ego hold you back from joining the evolution that’s going on. I’m certainly not saying throw everything you know and how you’ve done it out the window. I am saying, keep what you need and let go of what no longer works after an honest assessment period.

Can you take the challenge to Change, Adapt and Grow within the context of your own business and personal life? I hope so, I wouldn’t want you to miss out on this next leg of evolution in this lifetime.

As we march towards the end of 2014 the topic of change will be a focus for all of us. Does one really need a new years resolution? Or perhaps just a tweak to what they’re doing now? If you want help with this, contact Carrie Ann (info@mariagamb.com) to ask about our coaching programs.

Can Your Rely On Karma for Your Next Raise?

October 17th, 2014

When asked about the pay gap between men and women, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that women should trust karma instead of asking for pay raises. According to him, the solution to unfair pay is to trust the system and leave your career and advancement in the hands of karma. Really? Even though he has apologized for his remarks, the conversation is still out there and making headline news. That’s a good thing. It’s been a catalyst for conversation, introspection and assessment by many corporations and individuals. Not to mention those of us, like myself, who often advocate and teach women tools for advancement.

How is karma working out for the women at Microsoft? According to Glassdoor, a website that contains information about jobs and salaries, men at Microsoft make more than women in similar positions. Men that work as a senior software development engineer make around $137,000 per year compared to $129,000 for women in the same position.

I have to wonder how many other leaders out there were thinking the same thing and chuckled when Nadella said what they were thinking all along but were too afraid to say it themselves.  Or as Dr. Patty Ann Tublin, author of the upcoming book, Money Can Buy You Happiness: Secrets Women Need to Know to Get Paid What They Are Worth,  points out, “Nadella’s statement reveals one of the many unconscious biases women face in the workforce regarding both pay and how they are perceived as professionals.  Can you imagine Nadella asking the question: ‘How should men go about asking for a raise?’ Have you ever heard it suggested that men should negotiate for anything with karma? Covert childhood messages surface: it is unladylike and unattractive for women to embrace the desire to make money.”

Research by the White House on equal pay revealed that the gender gap in pay continues to persist. Women are earning only 77 to 78 cents to the same dollar as their male counterparts.  The pay gap is even greater for African-American and Latina women, with African-American women earning 64 cents and Latina women earning 56 cents for every dollar earned by a Caucasian man.

It doesn’t seem to me that the system is actually working, at least not well enough for the women who make up more than 50% of the workforce today. Nor do I think the karmic option is the way to go.

How about asking for what you want?

We can blame others, or karma, if we like. But the more empowered way to go is to actually figure out what you’re worth in the market place. Then go for it.

Here’s what Victoria Pynchon, co-founder of She Negotiates, has to say, “If you haven’t had a raise in some time (or have received only incremental increases) pull out your old job description from the cobwebs on your in-box and see whether you’ve taken on new duties.

Next, go to glassdoor.com,  salary.com or payscale.com to see whether you should be receiving a promotion together with a new job title. If that’s the case, search these three online resources to see what the current market value is for people in your new job. I’ll wager it’s more than a little bit more (2 or 3%) than you’re making now. From this information you can benchmark what others are making to state your case for a raise.

Your next strategic step is to integrate this information into a pointed conversation by saying, ‘Right now in the open market, someone doing my job is being paid $X. I’m hoping we can discuss ways in which we can bring my total compensation package in line with how my job has evolved.’  If your company prides itself on paying its people competitive salaries, then that is powerful phrasing.

Silence is golden. So wait. There’s nothing more useful to a negotiator than silence. It makes your bargaining partner eager to fill the space and you’ll want to learn as many of their thoughts as you can. The point is, you do not need to, nor should you wait to be noticed, to be selected or to let the system work for you when you have the power to control your career and your financial future. The days of women allowing unconscious and conscious biases to interfere with economic freedom needs to be over. The power is in your hands. In order to change anything you must be clear about your options—steadfast and persistent.”

Maria Gamb is the CEO and Founder of the leadership training and consulting firm, NMS Communications.  She is also the Amazon Top 10 best selling author of Healing the Corporate World. Website: www.MariaGamb.com Twitter: @mariagamb

The Rule of Three: It’s Not Networking, It’s Building the “Right” Relationships

June 19th, 2014

Here’s what’s so cool about what I do. I meet amazing people along the way who instantaneously become friends and trusted advisors. I don’t need a million of them, just quality rather than quantity. The “Rule of 3” is in effect where ever I go. Therefore, I don’t need to meet everyone at any given event.

I certainly will not participate in what I often times call “the ram and cram” of shoving business cards into other peoples hands. Empty discussions that tip into some odd void with only a vague remembrance of a face in the days that follow. Instead, it’s more important to me to focus on seeing only those whom there is a resonance with in that moment.

Afterward, when we speak we talk about our lives and then business, which always starts with “what are you working on and how can I help?” It’s natural. Uncontrived. And most importantly, in earnest. The hour passes like magic and at the end we both feel energized and complete.

How do you know who is that person in the crowded room?
You really just have to trust your intuition. Learn discernment. And while we love to give to others, there also needs to be healthy boundaries.

In all things remember, Quality over Quantity every single time.
The people you choose on this journey will determine your enjoyment or anxiety.


Subway Angels & The True Meaning of Happiness

June 12th, 2014

PressureIf you follow me on social media you know that I’ve been busy traversing the continent teaching and speaking over the past 8 weeks. It’s been such a profound honor and privilege to speak to literally thousands of men and women about how to create gender-intelligent leadership and teams (code for: learning how to play nice together and motivate others). It’s remarkable when people finally understand that a motivated and productive team is always made up of happy, healthy and heard individuals.

One of the stories I tell at the end of just about any platform speech given is on the importance of choosing happiness. Happiness IS a choice. Conflict, resentment and disagreements can oftentimes be overcome solely by the willingness to let go of 1 critical character flaw.

Today I’ll share that story with you.

7:15am and I’m running for the subway. The doors close behind me and I slink into my seat. Another day in the big city on my way to my job. Dressed head to toe in black – the uniform of NYC – expensive boots, matching purse and a pair of large Prada sunglasses. I don’t want to be engaged at all; I have my red Chanel lipstick on as a sign to the world: “don’t mess with me”.

As the train trundles down the tracks I spy an older couple standing in the doorway. Within minutes they melt my façade and I offer to help them get where they want to go. Quickly I realize they are hearing impaired.

She smiles at me and mouths “talk to him, he reads lips.”
His kind soft blue eyes melt my resolve to isolate, and I smile back. Something warms inside me. Satisfied with the directions I provided them, I turn and look out the window.

He taps me on the shoulder and our eyes lock again. He asks me “Where are you going?” I explain, “To work, although I wish I could stay in bed.” I laugh. He nods with concern and serves up the 20 million dollar question: “Are you happy?” I felt like I had just been hit in the stomach.

My mind flashed – yes, happy, yes. After all, I have a family that loves me, as crazy as they are, I own my own home in a great neighborhood, I have great friends and a job that many aspire to have. I make good money etc. The list ticked through my mind in rapid-fire succession. I smiled at him and said, “Yes, I am.”

He put his hand on my arm and looked deeply into my eyes; “That’s good. Because the secret to life is to always do whatever it takes to be happy.”

The pit of my stomach dropped out. I thought that I meant it. I thought that it was real. The subway doors opened, I found a seat on the platform and spontaneously burst into tears.

It took years for me to realize that I was not happy. Happiness is not external. Yes, external things bring comfort, but they do not bring happiness. There’s an important difference.

Happiness is an internal state of being eternally grateful, appreciative and generous. Happiness is the belief that one is always taken care of and that everything works out for your highest good. When you are and know these things, you will stop looking outside yourself to create your happiness because it is inside of you. It always has been.

Happiness also means giving up the need to be right all the time. Think about it.

These two sweet subway angels, as I call them, changed my life. Their message of kindness and compassion towards our selves and others can do the same for you. Remember, the key to life is to always do whatever it takes to be happy

Friday Finale: Attraversiamo…Let’s Cross Over!

April 25th, 2014

The past few weeks I’ve observed a very clear and concise theme in the world around me. Everyone I sit down and talk to tells me a story about his or her journey. In summation the crossroads they are standing upon is right here and right now. Not a cross road wrought with fear, instead full of so much joy, hope and anticipation. The energy feels so …. Huge!

I often recall the scene in the movie “Eat, Love, Pray” where Javier Bardems’ character shows Julia Roberts character the way forward in life and love saying “attraversiamo”. Which in Italian means, let’s cross over. Initially she resists and doesn’t go with him literally or figuratively. That is, until at the end of the movie. She is ready. Then it is she offering the invitation: attraversiamo – to cross over into the unknown with great excitement.

Those exchanges have always stuck with me and it’s a word I use often in my work with clients and in my personal life when a crossroad has been reached. It becomes clear that it’s time to cross over, meaning: move to the other side and take the next step on ones evolutionary path. Without fear. Without hesitation. But in full willingness to grow, change, expand and enjoy.

As we close out another spectacular spring week consider for a moment where the invitation attraversiamo has been offered to you. Will you take it this time? Are you willing to step into the next phase of the unknown or unexpected to see what possibilities lay there for you?

Just because I’m such a sap; here’s Julia’s invitation. Enjoy!

4 Faces of Greed: The Everyday Wolves of Wall Street

March 31st, 2014

Greed is sometime amplified and made popular by blockbuster movies such as “The Wolf of Wall Street.” In the film the star, Jordan Belfort, tells the audience “Was this all legal? Absolutely not” in regards to the millions of dollars he had made. Additionally, the movie “Wall Street” (1987) featured Gordon Gecko telling his young protégé “Greed is good.”

The movies may be different but the message is the same. Greed may be good, even great, while you’re compiling your treasures. But ultimately, it is a destructive source. In everyday life we may not experience the Belfort and Gecko levels of greed, but in other, more subversive ways, we do. Oftentimes it is something we may not even categorize as “greed” but by definition it is.

Greed is a practice of gluttony: to take more and more without reservation. It doesn’t matter what the “it” is. Gluttony implies that there’s just never ever going to be “enough.” This kind of behavior is one that can be embodied by anyone. It does not discriminate by race, gender or social standing in life or business.

Now before I share the Four Faces of Greed let me say this: there is nothing wrong with wanting to experience abundance or advance yourself. Not at all. However, an excess of any good thing procured in an inappropriate manner can often turn its head and nip us in the butt.

Do you see yourself?

* The Hoarder – The hoarder stockpiles what they have. They can never find enough stuff to insulate themselves with. It’s not unlike the TV show where people are dug out of their homes with a bulldozer. There’s never enough stuff to satisfy them, to allow them to feel safe and secure in the world. A hoarder at work would be someone who piles up accomplishments, bonuses, physical trophies, or has symbols of their success on display at all times and makes this a big part of their identity. The thrill is more about having all this stuff around them that props them up to show their importance and self-esteem, or false esteem.

* The Sneak – This is the person who sneaks around to get what they want. They are often stealthy in their activity. They take more than they should. Like those who cook the books, falsify documents or reporting for their own gain. Many would say that there aren’t a lot of those around except the ones we’ve seen in the news. So, let me ask you: have you ever hidden something from others on your team or from your superior to make yourself look good? Have you ever minimized facts until you could get the accolades, saving this type of reward all for yourself? Not being truthful or disclosing to others for your own personal gain is sneaky and greedy.

* The Bully – They take something no matter whether they want it or not, just so someone else can’t have it. I liken this form of greed to the playground bully. This is a power play, “You want this?” Whatever “this” is – a promotion, a recognition, a place on a special project – it doesn’t matter. They want it because you want it. It’s sport for them to take something away from another person because “they can.” This is a bully mentality that says “no one should have more than me, no one should feel good about themselves other than me, and YOU certainly cannot have more than me….ever.” You could also call this a form of self-entitlement… which may require its own category of greed!

* The Thrill Seeker. This person acquires stuff for the sheer thrill of it. Not because they feel the need to bully anyone or take from another person. It is purely because they like the thrill of the chase – but once the chase is over they are uninterested in the reward. Some will do this with rank and status in the office, in the real estate they acquire, or even the relationships they have with others. The thrill IS the chase. The mounting stuff is discarded and is rarely ever actually utilized.

If you work with any of these greedy sorts, there’s not much you can do aside from understand the personality that goes along with it. Knowing why and what they will do can help you steer clear of any personal trouble. Your job is not to change anyone. EVER. But knowing what motivates someone, will help you communicate better with them.

If you can identify yourself in any of these 4 faces, reconsider your behavior and your motives. Adjust your perception of what is enough to satisfy you. Shift your behavior from lack to knowing there is more than enough to go around.

Think long terms gains rather than short-term instant gratification and conquest. In other words, don’t be a Jordan Belfort or Gordon Gecko.