Main Forces that Affect Team’s Energy

I have shared 3 main forces in my previous posts, today I would like to share 5 more main forces on this topic. These are some of the points that I learned in the MBA class I am taking currently – People, Work and Organisations. The book that we use in this class is Organisational Behavior by Ian Brooks (Fifth Edition).

Firstly, you need to have purpose, goals to achieve. When the company or organization set clear goals for their team, the team will be more energized and focused on the same goals.

Then, understand that each individual is different. They are a part of a team – but the factors for their motivation differs from one another. Some may like the challenge, some may like the financial motivator, and more. You cannot use one size fits all in managing each person’s motivation.

Of course, one of the most important aspect in building your team is the hiring part. It can make or break your team. Ensure that you hire those with positive attitude, grit and positive outlooks.

Then, by having cross-functional teams that fosters collaboration – you can achieve better results, and increase the team’s energy. Marketing and design teams, design and engineering / development teams, sales and customer success teams, and a variety of other teams that find mutual advantage in collaborating and working toward a similar objective are examples of cross functional teams.

And last but not least is the team cohesion and bonding. This is one of the topic I discussed with one of my teammates today. We were talking about some historical stories about the company, team and improvements over the years. My teammate brought up that good bonding we have in the company helps to solve a lot of problems. It makes the work more fun and enjoyable. By having good team cohesion and bonding, many problems can be solved easily – as this allows better communication and teamwork. That is why teambuilding activities are actually important (it’s not just for fun) and the team members should be encouraged to work closely with one another and build bonds through projects, learning and helping out each other.

I am glad I had a good chat with him today – I felt, this too is a part of building bonds. It was quite enjoyable and let us learn more about each other too.

Aku Negaraku

Today I am feeling a bit patriotic.

I love my country, Malaysia.

Malaysia is great. And I believe all of us Malaysians are striving so that we can always improve and be the best version we can ever be. So that Malaysia can be the best country we can ever be.

I always believe Malaysia is the best country to live in, to build my family, to give my children the best environment to grow in.

I hope I can contribute to helping Malaysia to be better too.

When I was younger, someone said to me “Don’t ask what your country have done for you. But ask, what have you done for your country?”.

I felt that I have not achieved much in my past 35 years of life. But I hope every single step I took and will take, will be towards achieving my dreams – of contributing to Malaysia and to the Muslims all over the world. To bring up my beloved country to be the best, and to help all the Muslims wherever they are.

This has been my ambition, and it will always be.

Let’s work together to grow Malaysia together. It’s our future. It’s our children’s future.

Selamat Hari Kemerdekaan yang ke – 64, Negaraku Malaysia.

Team’s Energy: Involve People in Sorting Out and Dealing with Situations

One of the main forces that affect the most on a team’s energy, is involving people in sorting out and dealing with situations.

The wording is quite straightforward and I believe that most understand what it means.

So in this post, let me share my story.

I am a problem solver – and I like to move fast. So usually if I / we face with certain problems and I know how to solve it – I usually just proceed with it without much discussion.

So what I did previously, is I always try to solve everything by myself – unless it is something that I really don’t know how to solve it (Usually if I had issues with very deeply technical things – I would let my brother/sister to solve them).

Even though I managed to solve the problems fast, but a few issues arised:

  1. Of course I felt tired and frustrated because I felt that I have to do everything by myself (this is so plain negative thinking actually – other people wanted to help, but I didn’t give them the opportunity).
  2. Non inclusive community – my team would feel that I am the one who call all the shots, and they felt like they were not included in decision making process. This makes them felt like they are not part of the team. So here, it becomes like receiving instructions and carrying them – this lowered team energy level.
  3. The solution may not be the best – As I proceed with my own knowledge and experience without taking into consideration others’ knowledge and experiences.

This happened due to I felt the need to be in control in every different aspects in the business. However, by doing this, I was also becoming the bottleneck in the company.

Along the way, I tried to learn how to let go. It’s hard, but it is required for us to grow.

Letting go does not mean not caring. It is actually putting trust in your team.

By letting go, I am actually giving opportunities to the team members to sort out the problems we faced and deal with situations. This gives opportunities for them to learn, sharpen their problem solving skills, and also leverage on knowledge and experiences of more people – thus, getting to much better solutions in the long run.

Sometimes, I need to be the facilitator in the problem solving process, but most of the time, they actually know how to solve them. Not only this free up my time to focus on growth, but also the team members felt a part of the team, and have a stronger bond.

All these years, I see that those who I let them be involved in sorting out and deal with situations by themselves / among the team – they grow faster, they can level up much better and I can rely on them more, than those who don’t.

Imagine if you were an apple tree

A few years back, I used to visit counsellors to get counselling sessions. Those years were very challenging years as I was tested not only in work-related areas, but also friendships, financial and more.

The first counsellor I met, opened my eyes to the world of counselling. From that day onwards, I believe counselling plays a big role in mental and emotional health.

During the first session, one of the question that was asked to me,

“What if you were an apple tree?”

Person A came to you and water you. How would you respond?
Person B came to you and climbed you to get the apples. How would you respond?
Person C threw sticks at you to get the apples. How would you respond?

As a normal human being, of course I feel like throwing sticks back at Person C. Haha.

But, as an apple tree, our objective is actually to produce apples. So, who cares what other people do? Why do we need to retaliate or respond negatively when we perceive other people as treating us negatively? Sometimes that’s the only way that they know how to get something or to get response from us.

Person A came. We give them good apples.
Person B came. We give them good apples.
Person C came. We give them good apples.

At the time when Person D came with an axe to chop us down, Person A, B and C will inform that we produce good apples and stop us from being cut down.

This story opened my eyes. Why do we treat people like how we feel they treated us? No matter how they treat us, we should always treat them well.

Sometimes, this is easier said than done. As usual, to develop a new habit, you need to consciously make the good decision, until it comes naturally to you.

Alhamdulillah, the multiple counselling sessions I had attended over a course of few years managed to help pull me out from depression that I faced at that time.

I know, sometimes I tend to forget the teachings and reacted like any normal person would. But as always, I try to reflect back to the counselling sessions and remember all the helpful councillors.

I am grateful.

If you are constantly sad, stressed or depressed, and have never met with a counsellor before, you should.

counselling #apples #react #positive

Team is the most valuable resource a leader has

Hi everyone,

Today I would like to share a bit on Leadership.

Currently I am going through my MBA course, Organizational Behaviour.

I believe taking MBA will greatly help me improving myself so that I can be a better leader, and help us to improve our company to greater heights.

I decide to start writing about the course(s) that I take throughout this MBA program so that it can become a way for me to write again the things that I read, and learned – It helps me to understand the materials more and how to apply it in real life situations. I will also share some of my experiences from time to time as well. And hopefully some of the knowledge and sharing will also be able to help you as well.

Team is the most valuable resource a leader has.

One of the most importact aspect of a leader is to manage the energy, outlook, engagement and cohesion of your team.

Why?

With these qualities, you and the team will become stronger and more resilient to achieve your goals and overcome the challenges.

So now, let’s look at the energy. It’s easier to work with a team full of energy than those who have less energy such as less motivation.

What are the main forces that affect the most on team’s energy? Today, I will share two of the main forces. Insya Allah, I will share more in the next post(s).

  1. Your energy as the leader

You yourself need to have the energy in order for your team to have the energy. Build your energy and grit so that your teammates can see how energized you are and be more motivated too. Demotivated leaders will also bred demotivated team.

I have been in situations where I myself became demotivated and weak. It’s very stressful for myself, and possibly more stressful for my teammates as well. I tried hard to mask my tiredness and lack of motivation – but that also becomes stressful for me as I had to act unnaturally – which is going against my emotional state at that point of time.

However, it’s very important to manage your energy and emotions too. This is one of the things I need to learn and improve myself as well.

So, what to do in this situation? Different people may have different ways to overcome the challenges. Sometimes I will take a break or holiday leave, so that I can get a way a bit to re-energize. However, most of the time if I have too much on my plate, I am unable to turn my brain off – so what I do is, I try to find a change of environment by doing my work somewhere else besides my normal workstation.

What would you do in this situation? Please share with us =)

2. Constant Communication

Next, miscommunication or lack of communication will also impact of the team’s energy. This is especially a delicate matter due to the needs of communication may differ from one person to another.

Some may need more communications and some may need less. Some people may treat more communications as something annoying, but some may treat lack of communication as not caring enough towards them.

Especially now that many of us are working from home due to the pandemic, this has become bigger issue across many different teams.

I myself faced this issue as well. This is something I try to constantly learn, but this is also the area I regularly failed. Some people may feel I communicated too much and may be tired of answering my phone calls and emails. But some people may feel I communicated way less, and they felt being left out. It’s a delicate balance which I am still trying to work on.

For you, what are the amount of communications that you think is good?

Hope to hear some sharing from you too so that we can help improve each other and better ourselves in overcoming the challenges.

Count Your Blessings Day #11 (Posted 29 April 2021)

Salam Nuzul Quran everyone! (Sorry for sharing this a tad late on my blog!)

Today, I would like to share about our Mama, Zurhiati Saad.

Mama was a teacher throughout her whole career. For her, studies and academic is everything.

When we were young, Mama would always give us tuitions (along with our friends too). This is one of the ways she made sure we study. We had tuitions almost every night on different subjects. Until now I still don’t know how did Mama get her energy and time to do all of those. I am trying to do it with my kids – but couldn’t 100% emulate Mama. I probably only manage to study with them just 2-3 nights per week.

I still remember, to ensure that we have conducive space to study, one of our bedrooms was converted into study room with tables, chairs and whiteboard. All 4 of us would sleep in 1 bedroom. We had triple decker bed. 2 of us would share a bed, or add another mattress on the floor.

I still remember, she would always ask us about our results. If we didn’t get A, she would ask, why didn’t we get A? If we got 95%, she would ask, why didn’t we get 100%? Haha. I remember that one day, Zul Az brought his books and studied in front of Mama and followed her everywhere – to the kitchen, bedroom, and even in front of the bathroom as evidence that he is studying. That’s how much Mama put importance in our studies. Mama was also very generous in regards of books. If we ask for any books, even comic books, she would 100% buy them for us.

All those time and sacrifices she made when we were small, paid off well. Alhamdulillah all of us achieved good scores in our examinations, and received scholarships to study. And the scholarships came at the best time too – the business weren’t doing so well and the money was drying up fast at that time. It was a very stressful time for my parents. My parents often told us, Allah sent rezeki through us, through the scholarships. Alhamdulillah.

Mama has just retired end of last year and she is now enjoying her retirement – by learning programming!

Thank you, Mama for everything you have done for us. We are so blessed to have a great mother like you.Thank you, Allah for all the blessings you have given us.

Count Your Blessings – Day #9 (Posted 26 April 2021)

Assalamualaikum wbt,

Hi everyone!

Sorry my post today is a bit late. I was a bit overwhelmed this morning. Haha.

Anyway, my #CountYourBlessings post today is about my kids.

Adam, Ameena and Azmi.

Adam was born in 2011. Alhamdulillah Allah gave me a very good and easy to manage baby for my firstborn. I remember that my dad commented “Rumah ni macam takde baby je” because of how quiet he was. He was just smiling and laughing all the time. A very good baby to start off my motherhood journey.

Then, next come Ameena in 2012, and Azmi in 2013. I usually become pregnant back within 5 months of giving birth. Hahaha. So right after Azmi, I immediately took Implanon so that I can plan my family. However, looking back, I wish I have given birth to another 2 kids before taking Implanon so that I can have 5 kids that are already big enough by now.

Their age is so near to each other that they are very close, like siblings-best friends. Now, they help each other in studies, they play and grow up together. I really love my kids.

When they were young, I was so stressed out. I didn’t care anymore about everything else. From the moment I woke up until the time I sleep, my life revolved around my babies. I didn’t care about how I look, how my clothes look – everything else is like “whatever”. However, now I am grateful that all of my kids are big enough already to become my little friends. They often accompany me everywhere I go, they love to hug and kiss me (and me them!) and always remind me if I did anything wrong. And now I start to enjoy my life more too with my little bundles of joy accompanying my in my life journey.

The way we grow up our little ones, is we teach them not to be afraid to say no and to speak up, and to always be affectionate with us. So, they usually will remind us little things like “Mommy, jangan baring masa azan”, or “Mommy, jangan marah2 sangat” and they will hold each other accountable for anything they have promised. They absolutely love to help me and help around the house. I am so grateful to be granted with the best kids ever who absolutely are not shy to kiss me.Thank you Allah for the wonderful children.

Count Your Blessings Day #8

Assalamualaikum everyone, how are you?

For today’s Count Your Blessings story, I would like to share a bit about my team. I am truly blessed and grateful to Allah for granting me such wonderful teammates whom I can rely on. For today’s story, I would like focus on the Business Development and the Growth & Marketing team.

If you follow my stories, I actually came from the Engineering background, and dived into the IT sector in 2009. I really enjoy doing Marketing and Business Development activities. These are the 2 teams that I work closely with on daily basis.

I am grateful to have such a strong and closely knit team – From left: Haslan, Nisa, Pak Ngah (En Johari), Aliff, Ayah(Ir Aziz Ismail), Ezwan Zulkiflee, Amir, Anisa. In the front: Athilah, Alif Najmi Bahari.

My teammates work very hard, and have very good teamwork. Each one of us came from various different backgrounds – from Accountancy, Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, Ecommerce, Economics, Mathematics, Advertising, Electronics and Business Admin. None of us actually had any formal education in Marketing, but that does not stop us from doing the things we need to do to grow the company together. No excuses.

We learn together, we try and error together – and most important of all, we consistently improve our approach and knowledge together so that we can grow together to greater heights. In short, we do and experience almost everything together. I am proud to say that I learned a lot from each and every one of them. And I absolutely love to watch them grow.

For your info, one of my team members is differently abled, but instead of seeing it as a weakness, we see it as a strength – he can craft marketing materials very well and have very good eyes in coordinating colors and designs. Everyone falls in love with his designs. Here, we believe that everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, which we work together to capitalize on our strengths and overcome our weaknesses.

Alhamdulillah, I am so happy to be blessed with such wonderful teammates. I am grateful that I have the opportunity to work with each and every one of them.

Thank you, Allah.

Count Your Blessings Day #7

Assalamualaikum wbt everyone!

In today’s Count Your Blessings story, I would like to share about the blessings of believing in the path that Allah has laid for us.

When I was young, I always used to feel “I have worked so hard for this, why didn’t I get it?”. It became very stressful. I believe most of us were that way especially when we were younger. Alhamdulillah, as I grow, I started to always believe in the path that Allah has laid for me.

Let’s reminisce the old times..

When I was in Form 3, I prayed for so many times to Allah to join Sekolah Seri Puteri in Form 4. At that time my brother was in Sekolah Alam Shah, and I thought SSP is near to SAS, so my parents can visit us both in the same day instead of having to alternate weeks (Jealous daughter here haha). I received offer to go to SM Sains Selangor instead. I was happy and sad at the same time. Happy that I got to join an SBP, but sad because it’s not SSP. But then, I realized, Allah answered my doa. I didn’t get what I want but I got what I need – SMSS is right next to SAS. So, I actually achieved my objective of getting our parents to visit us both on the same day. I am truly blessed to have joined SMSS, which I will share in another story.

This actually happened again and again throughout my life.Early in my career, I usually become stressed out when any of the team members are leaving us. The sadness sometimes became unbearable. However, Allah always send someone else to join us with the right skills and right attitude, at the right time. I am blessed that Allah grant me such wonderful teammates.

Again and again, sometimes I don’t get what I want, but Allah always give me what I need.

I am truly blessed. Once I started to truly believe in the path that Allah has chosen for me – I enjoy my life more, I become less stressed out, and become happier in everything I do.

If you feel stressed out with your life, if you feel sad, if you feel you didn’t get what you want even after you worked so hard for it, try to look back and see all the hikmah in everything that you have gone through. Allah loves us, and we need to always believe that He always give us the best.