Here is a quick trivia game for you- give yourself a minute and see how many questions you can answer.
- Who are the first three Canadian Prime Minister?
- Who was the first man on the moon?
- Who is the world’s richest person?
- Who is on the Canadian $100 bill?
- Who were the first Canadian Nobel Prize Laureate?
- Who won best actress in a leading role at the Oscars (2015)?
- Who won best actor in a leading role at the Oscars (2015)?
- Who is considered the father of microbiology?
- Who invented the mechanical movable type printer that started the Printing Revolution?
- Who is the longest serving American President?
Now check your answers at the bottom of the page. How many did you get right?
Reset the time and try this second round of trivia.
- Name your first three best friends?
- Who is the first teacher who inspired you to chase your dreams?
- Who continues to inspire you to make the most of everyday?
- Who can make you laugh until you cry?
- Who would you drop everything for if they needed help?
- Who would drop everything for you if you needed help?
- Who can you go months without seeing then when you see them it’s as though you haven’t been apart?
- Who was the first friend you made at the University of Guelph?
- Who knows how to cheer you up even on your grumpiest days?
- Who do you call when you just need to be listened to?
Much easier right? While the people in the first round of trivia accomplished important things and have had an impact on your life in some way or another, it’s the people highlighted in the second set of questions that really matter. They are the ones to look up to and be thankful for the role they have played in your life!
1. Sir John A Macdonald, Alexander Mackenzie, Sir John Abbott 2. Neil Armstrong 3. Bill Gates 4. Robert Borden 5. Frederick Banting and JJR Macleoad 6. Eddie Redmayne 7. Julianne Moore 8. Louis Pasteur 9. Johannes Gutenberg 10. Roosevelt
We have all heard the phrase below:
We often times reinforce to leaders that the recognition and applause given should not be the sole motivating factor. There should be a sense of passion, and drive behind what you are doing that the recognition is an after thought.
Despite this idea and concept of not working for praise, strong leaders know that praise and recognition can do wonders for the moral, team dynamic and overall team experience. No matter how minimal the recognition given is, it is never unappreciated.
As a leader you can sometimes get caught up in providing constructive criticism. We all have different strengths and talents. This diversity usually makes it easy to identify ways that you would have done things differently and potentially achieve a more desirable outcome (also known as the “next time maybe we could try….” feedback)
That being said there is still a role for recognition and praise in addition to constructive criticism. There is a fine line between providing others with a correct ratio of positive feedback and constructive criticism. A report published in the Harvard Business Review found that the ratio of positive to negative comments for the highest performing team was approximately 5.6! This means that for everyone one negative comment (whether that be constructive or not) there were six positive comments and recognition, which contributed to the productivity of the group.
How does this all relate back to our idea of everyday leadership and Whiteboard Wednesday project. One of the main reactions that we got when asking people to write on the whiteboard how they were a leader was usually a pause and a reply that was along the lines of “I have no idea….”. What was interesting was that when two friends were approached when the one was stumbling over what to write, the other was already listing off the potential items of how they see their friend as a leader.
Ultimately part of being a leader is being able to identify the good in others and most of us do it naturally, but it is the next step that is some times missing. Now that you have all these wonderful things you have identified about people, LET THEM KNOW! When someone is doing a good job, let them know. When someone has really been instrumental in accomplishing a certain task, recognize them for it. When someone has stepped out of their comfort zone to task and risk, recognize their efforts regardless of success or failure.
It is one thing to be aware of what others are doing well, but it’s another thing to have the guts to say it. To sum it up, don’t work for praise but be generous in your delivery of praise!
As many of the Gryphons enter the final stretch of their degree (the final 6 weeks) it can be a time where things might start getting a little sentimental.
Regardless of the number of times you move, whether or not you hold onto your notebooks filled with illegibly scribbled exam notes or your 4+ years worth of homecoming and OV t-shirts, the memories that you have made at this institution will stick with you for a lot longer.
With that being said, it’s the final countdown for the semester so go and make some memories!
Despite being only February it is incredible to see what has already been accomplished on campus both this semester and last. From conferences and events bringing students together from all across Canada to smaller function that make Guelphites feel included and a part of something bigger, there has been incredible efforts made to expand the university experience beyond the classroom.
I know there is still some time left in this semester but it is time ahead about who and how you would like to celebrate those amazing leaders in your life. One special way to do so is through recognition by nominating them for a Student Life Award. All information can be found here. Remember, no incredible efforts should go unrecognized!
Disclamer: the video embedded is quite powerful and contains some mature content and heavy topics. Just a heads up for this Monday morning!
Today’s Motivation Monday revolves around a video that I have seen pop up through a few different avenues over the internet. Regardless of how many times I watch it, there seems to be a different line or message that sticks with me each time.
One thought that stuck out to me is the idea that so much learning happens outside of the classroom. Opportunities to learn, inquire and grow are constantly being presented, it’s just a matter of recognizing and taking advantage of those moments.
How will you make the most of your opportunities today? (and every other day?)
There have been a significant number of events recently, Random Acts of Kindness Day being one and a new Student Life initiative called the Leadership Intensive being another, that have really highlighted the importance of your character and values to me.
It is becoming more and more apparent when looking ahead to life after university that character and values are extremely important in guiding you in which direction to take the next steps. Your resume might speak to what you have accomplished and on paper what leadership abilities and experience you have but this documentation is not the be all and end all. These credentials are important to be able to demonstrate what you have accomplished but at the end of the day it’s not what you have accomplished that matters but who you are. It’s your character and values that make you into someone that other people strive to look up to and can lead a group in a positive direction.
When I was growing up and found something challenging my mother would always remind me of what The Little Engine That Could used to say. For those who haven’t read or don’t remember the book he always said “ I think I can, I think I can” and then was able to do what he was attempting.
Regardless of what you are trying to accomplish there will always be a few moments of doubt- sometimes it’s self-doubt and other times it’s expressed by others. However if you’ve thought it through thoroughly and have a game plan in place then most of the time you just have to push those thoughts aside and get on with it! Have confidence in your ability and the plan you have set out!