I was visiting TJ again. You remember TJ, he is my grandson who asked, “How many Wheat Thins is not too many” (Blog, 9/26/2011). His mom was on another business trip and I am delighted to report that I was the “sitter of choice”— probably because of how well I handled the Wheat Thins dilemma, don’t you think?
TJ was excited about his new Beyblades. A Beyblade is a high-performance spinning top that was popular 11 years ago and seems to have resurrected. The small plastic and metal top gets its spinning power from a plastic cord. When the cord is pulled through a plastic receptacle, the Beyblade drops into a plastic arena. Competing tops spin and bump each other, and the winner is the one that spins the longest. When asked if I wanted to play with them, I noted that I didn’t know how to use a Beyblade.
“Don’t worry, Gram. I will teach you how to do it!” TJ said as he opened a plastic case filled with multicolored Beyblades. I chose a red one.
TJ instructed me in a way much resembling a coaching model I use for sales reps: explain, demonstrate, observe, and demo again if necessary. TJ said, “Watch me, Gram” as he demonstrated. While he was showing me, he was talking out loud verbalizing what he was doing. “First I choose one of these things (the base), then I put the cord in and I pull it real fast. Then the Beyblade drops into here (the arena) and spins. See Gram? Now you try it.”
In my first failed attempt the top hardly spun at all. TJ suggested that I pull the cord faster and snap my wrist before it drops out. He showed me again. It was my turn. And there is was, a successful Beyblade launch! My top was spinning fast. TJ nodded, a non verbal gesture validating who I was as a grandmother—no question, I had made “the cut!”
TJ showed me what to do by verbalizing every step he was doing. He checked to see if I understood, and then let me do it. When I did not do it correctly, he told me what I was doing incorrectly, demonstrated the process again, and gave me another turn. My guess is he learned this coaching process from his mom who has shown him how to pass with a lacrosse stick, frost a cupcake, and phonetically sound out a word.
And then it struck me. I consistently use this coaching model to help sales reps increase productivity, yet I forget to apply this effective way of teaching outside of my work. And more broadly, in my professional life, I am consistently prepared, organized, on time, and communicate effectively, but sometimes in my personal life I miss the mark! I am not two different woman depending on my setting. Rather I am one woman with skills to positively impact my surroundings, whatever they be. As with the Beyblade, I know how to pull the cord for maximum effectiveness and I need to do so throughout my day.
A high SUCCESSTROGEN level woman is effective in every aspect of her life. Her skill sets carry from her work to her personal life and back again. She is consistent in her behavior and the impact she has on others, 24/7! I guess I have a little work to do.
And you? Are there some areas of your life where you take the time to be at your best, and others where you just don’t make the effort?