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Story Telling in Business – Slides Download

Story Telling in Business

Story Telling in Business

Thanks to the organizers of the D91 Toastmasters International 2015 Autumn Conference in Swindon, UK

The slides used during the keynote “Story Telling in Business” by Thomas Rose are now available as download.

Please keep in mind that the download consists only of the PDF version of the Powerpoint presentation shown in the keynote. No animations, no comments, no spoken words, nor the charming presenter himself is part of the download 😉

Slides are only a tiny part of a presentation and will never come close to the whole experience of a live keynote. If you want a presentation at your next conference just ask Thomas Rose. Just send any inquiries via Mail to Thomas Rose.


This keynote was presented at the Great Western Conference in Swindon, UK, on November 7th, 2015. Find more details here.

Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose


More wisdom for smart people (in German):
Dr. Thomas Rose: Sünden auf meinem Planeten – Kein Reiseführer für Indien

How to get your point across in 30 seconds (engl – as recommended by Jeremy Robinson):
How To Get Your Point Across In 30 Seconds Or Less


Upcoming Event: Storytelling in Business

Let's gather around the campfire

Just a quick announcement

Storytelling in Business

As a Toastmaster you know about the power and magic of storytelling: Your audience is way more charmed by a good tale than by a factual report. Many people, however, feel that they don’t have a story to tell. Fact is: They have. They are just too close to their own stories to easily recognise them.

Let’s dive deep and let’s find the story of “you”. Furthermore, let’s talk about the tools you need in order to help your customers, clients and co-workers to find their story.

Let’s gather around the campfire!


This keynote will be presented at the Great Western Conference in Swindon, UK, on November 7th, 2015. Find more details here.

Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose


More wisdom for smart people (in German):
Dr. Thomas Rose: Sünden auf meinem Planeten – Kein Reiseführer für Indien

Knowledge Management and Narratives (engl):
Knowledge Management and Narratives: Organizational Effectiveness Through Storytelling: Organizational Effectiveness Through Storrytelling


How I introduced myself to Facebook

Dr. Thomas Rose pondering his latest blog post.

Joining the GoG

There’s a fantastic group on Facebook called mySpeakerBusiness (I am afraid you need to be logged into Facebook in order to see the content of this group). The members of this group provide speakers with the information they need to make their speaker business flourish. A great idea!

The group was founded by Monique Blokzyl who successfully runs the Business Launch Portal. Have a look at their website – it has valuable content, too. The Facebook group
mySpeakerBusiness has a member list that reads like the Who is Who of Public Speaking. You will find input from award winning speakers like John Zimmer, Olivia Schofield, Peter Zinn, Florian Mueck and Alexander Lang – only to name a few.

Anyway, I am proud to have been asked to join the Gang of Gurus (now you know what GoG stand for) and while I was thinking of what is worth of bothering my fellows with, a very specific idea crystalized from my spaghetti thoughts. And since Facebook is so volatile and fugitive I concluded that this is the perfect trigger for (finally) yet another post.

Nice to meet you

Hello fellow speakers!

I recently joined mySpBiz and would like to say “Hi!” to y’all. Monique asked me to introduce myself to the community – well, here I go.

Speaking is neither my main pursuit nor is a speaking business my main income. I am a management and executive consultant (mainly in the banking arena).

Although speaking is a considerable revenue stream for me I am equally convinced that earning money with speaking is hard earned money indeed. Especially when we take time into consideration. Not the time for the actual talk, but the time needed for preparation. I roughly estimate one hour of preparation for one minute of presentation. Given for example a keynote of 90 min length we roughly face two weeks of preparation. Even if you get a four figure fee for your talk the income per month is not paramount – especially when you take into account related costs caused by traveling and running the back office of your speaker business.

IMHO making a living as a consultant is much easier – even though it can be very tough (and rough) to parley with CEOs, executives, and decision makers.

And here is what I have learned from my consulting business which directly influences my speaking business: There are many rhetorical skills we need as speakers – that’s a no-brainer. I am not going to debate on which skill is the most important – be it authenticity (thumbs up!), the management of eye contact, body language (highly overestimated, if you ask me), visual aids, or whatever Toastmasters taught us – they are all important and you all master them very well. But there are two things of which I think are crucial to everyone’s speaking business and these are: Expertise and Experience.

I’ve met speakers who talk about leadership who have never led a team. I’ve seen speakers talking about management who have never managed a project. I’ve listened to speakers on business development whose business is to spam others on Twitter. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt and burnt it already.

I need to be an experienced expert

(And you need to be one, too!)
The most successful speeches I’ve given (both financially and concerning audience feedback) always dealt with what I do day in, day out – although these are not the topics for which I am burning the brightest. However I brightly burn for triggering and delivering extraordinary ideas to ordinary people (like CEOs, executives, and decision makers).

Remember that when we talk to an organization we are talking to people. These people are dealing with a very specific set of challenges and problems and we need to deliver a valuable input which helps them solve their problems. They don’t give a sh#t about how many marathons I’ve run or how many mountains I have climbed. If I do not add to the pool of solutions they are looking for I’m off their minds before I’m off their stage.

Just my tuppence. Not necessarily yours. I know.

Nice to be part of the gang.

Based on experience – I wish you well,
Hello fellow speakers!

I recently joined mySpBiz and would like to say “Hi!” to y’all. Monique asked me to introduce myself to the community – well, here I go.

Speaking is neither my main pursuit nor is a speaking business my main income. I am a management and executive consultant (mainly in the banking arena).

Although speaking is a considerable revenue stream for me I am equally convinced that earning money with speaking is hard earned money indeed. Especially when we take time into consideration. Not the time for the actual talk, but the time needed for preparation. I roughly estimate one hour of preparation for one minute of presentation. Given for example a keynote of 90 min length we roughly face two weeks of preparation. Even if you get a four figure fee for your talk the income per month is not paramount – especially when you take into account related costs caused by traveling and running the back office of your speaker business.

IMHO making a living as a consultant is much easier – even though it can be very tough (and rough) to parley with CEOs, executives, and decision makers.

And here is what I have learned from my consulting business which directly influences my speaking business: There are many rhetorical skills we need as speakers – that’s a no-brainer. I am not going to debate on which skill is the most important – be it authenticity (thumbs up!), the management of eye contact, body language (highly overestimated, if you ask me), visual aids, or whatever Toastmasters taught us – they are all important and you all master them very well. But there are two things of which I think are crucial to everyone’s speaking business and these are: Expertise and Experience.

I’ve met speakers who talk about leadership who have never led a team. I’ve seen speakers talking about management who have never managed a project. I’ve listened to speakers on business development whose business is to spam others on Twitter. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt and burnt it already.

The most successful speeches I’ve given (both financially and concerning audience feedback) always dealt with what I do day in, day out – although these are not the topics for which I am burning the brightest. However I brightly burn for triggering and delivering extraordinary ideas to ordinary people (like CEOs, executives, and decision makers).

Remember that when we talk to an organization we are talking to people. These people are dealing with a very specific set of challenges and problems and we need to deliver a valuable input which helps them solve their problems. They don’t give a sh#t about how many marathons I’ve run or how many mountains I have climbed. If I do not add to the pool of solutions they are looking for I’m off their minds before I’m off their stage.

Just my tuppence. Not necessarily yours. I know.

Nice to be part of the gang.

Based on experience – I wish you well,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose


More wisdom for smart people (in German):
Dr. Thomas Rose: Sünden auf meinem Planeten – Kein Reiseführer für Indien


Letters from Vietnam (6): “That’s the best thing that happened to me” is usually a lie

Letters from Vietnam – Part 6

Or should it be: Lessons from Vietnam?

We all lie. Most of the time to ourselves

You must have made the following observation as well.

You are talking to somebody and he tells you his story. He recently went through some hardship. Be it that he lost his job, got through a divorce or had to cancel his holiday. When he gives us the details of the course of this experience then there is usually a twist and something completely unexpected but gratifying turned out to happen. If he lost his job he might have found a better one and he concludes that he didn’t like his old job anyway. After the divorce he met somebody far more attractive and the cancelled holiday gave him the opportunity to engage in a highly interesting project at work. What ever happened, all those stories end with the same phrase:

“This is the best that ever happened to me!”

This is usually a lie.

The last time when I lied to myself

Before I explain why we lie to ourselves let me tell when I last lied to myself. It only happened yesterday.

I am currently in Cambodia and yesterday, after visiting the breathtaking site of Angkor Wat in Siem Riep, I was travelling by bus back to the capital of Cambodia, Phnom Penh. During this trip we had a forced break due to a flat tire. The tire was fixed for 3US$ and the passengers could stretch their legs. So far, nothing extraordinaire. It happens all the time.

Most bus drivers usually make some extra money by picking up locals and giving them a lift. After the mentioned break I came back to my seat and it was occupied by an old Cambodian lady who the driver had allowed to embark. I tried to tell the lady that this was my place and that I would like to have it back. After all, it was a good seat.

My seat was a front seat and I booked early to make sure that I will have a seat that gives me the best opportunity to observe the flying by nature. Front seats are not only better because of the view. The further you sit in the back the more unpleasant the ride over these bumpy roads will become. If you sit in the back of a vehicle, especially behind the rear axis, you will find yourself most of the time under the ceiling. Far from my understanding of a pleasant journey. There was only one disadvantage about my front seat, and this was the air condition that I couldn’t regulate and it was freaking cold their.

Unfortunately I couldn’t make myself clear to the lady, she didn’t understand what I wanted. And I didn’t want to make a big fuzz about it so I took a seat further in the back. The ride was bumpier there and the view was not as good. However, the regulation of the aircon worked and I could shelter myself from the freezing breeze.

Then I concluded: “This is the best thing that happened to me on this journey!”

Lie! BIG LIE!

This was not the best thing that happened to me. I only changed my priorities. After all, picking a front seat was the consequence of some thoughtful reasoning. How can something that was out of my control and that happened by pure accident suddenly be a more favourable situation for me?

The lesson learnt: Why we lie to ourselves

We lie to ourselves because it eases our minds. We give up and conclude, that what we wanted is not that important anymore. We came in second and now we rationalise why that is such a great thing.

Now, don’t take me wrong.

I am a keen supporter of the idea to always look for the best even when things get rough. I am strongly convinced that there’s good in everything. And we should never stop searching for exactly this. But we shall not fool ourselves in convincing us that missing the target is something that we should have aimed at in the first place.

Application of the lesson learnt to your business

The application of the lesson learnt to your business is pretty easy though it may come as a surprise. Here it is:

Don’t be an easy quitter.

When we convince ourselves that it was a good thing not to reach our initial goals, than we abandon our plans, we hand control over to others and we give up. Rationalising is natures way to ease our pain when we don’t hit the target. Let’s not get fooled by that. It’s fine to have your Plan B ready, but you shouldn’t quit Plan A all too easy. If your business idea doesn’t work in the beginning then you should at least give it another ten tries. You’ll become better with every shot. And only when you have failed at least ten times you are entitled to accept that it’s not going to work.

And by the way, the number of attempts “ten” and the word “failing” are highly debatable. After Thomas Edison’s seven-hundredth unsuccessful attempt to invent electric light, he was asked by a New York Times reporter, “How does it feel to have failed seven hundred times?” The genius responded,

“I have not failed 700 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work.” Thomas Edison.

And now go, and try once more. Failure is an attitude, not a result.

Tạm biệt,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose


Letters from Vietnam (5): Plan as you like – life will tweak your nose

Anti-theft system to secure my belongings when I travel.

Letters from Vietnam – Part 5

Or should it be: Lessons from Vietnam?

Plan for the worst, expect the best

Or as Benjamin Frankling once put it:

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.

When you go on a journey to Indochina you need to prepare. Be it vaccination, travel documents like flight tickets and visas, or planing your route and making a list of the places and things you want to see. One major concern of travel preparation is all the stuff that goes into your backpack. Over the course of my trips I managed to travel more and more lightly, and still I feel that I am carrying too much. Many things that I carry with me I have never worn or used. Especially my first-aid kit is literally untouched and unchanged since my trip to India in 2009. I need a plaster once in a while or some iodine, but thanks to my guardian angel nothing serious has ever happened to me. Well, I broke a rip once when I was thrown off by a camel. But even this misfortune could have ended much worse. So you won’t hear me complaining.

I daresay that there is a parallel between my first-aid kit and our lives: The things that we dread the most rarely happen in real life. They only happen in our imagination. We often expect the worst and prepare for the best, i.e. we worry too much and we prepare too little. I suggest we turn that around: Let’s prepare for the worst and expect the best. The worst that can happen to us is that we are over-prepared. In business that is rarely a bad thing and when you travel you simply add a little weight to you load.

Prepare as you like, however, there will be situations that you didn’t have in mind when you planned your journey. Life will come and tweak your nose because for the open-minded it is full of surprises and wonders. After all, isn’t life what happens when you are planning something else?

How I secure my backpack when I am not in the hotel

When my luggage is in the hotel while I am running around exploring the area, then I want my belongings to be safe from theft. One thing is for sure though: I will hardly be able to fully protect my belongings against the determined burglar. The only thing I can provide for is that it takes as long as possible for the snatcher to get hold of my possessions. At least I make sure that he will have to use some tools to seize my property.

The way I do it when I travel is by use of a Kensington security slot. I am always carrying a small netbook on my journeys and before I attach the Kensington lock to my computer I first fix the lock to something heavy or something fixed on a wall. I then thread the cable through a couple of loops of my backpack. Next I store the netbook deep in my backpack and close the backpack as tight as possible. And if I don’t forget I even check my zippers! 😉

And then life tweaked my nose

I did so when I was in Duong Dong the other day. I had checked into a hotel but the room we agreed on wasn’t ready, so the owner assigned me another room. When I was ready to explore the island of Phu Quoc the next morning I secured my backpack using the technique described above before I left. Since I couldn’t attach the sling to something fixedly mounted on the wall I threaded the cable through a heavy chair standing nearby. At the reception the owner told me that she is going to prepare the other room and that I shouldn’t worry. Everything would be fine.

When I was coming back a couple of hours later I opened the door to my new hotel room and was very much surprised to see my backpack standing next to the bed – still tightly fixed to that heavy chair. The lady of the house, who weighs hardly more than 45kg, had carried both pieces over a tiny staircase from the fourth to the first floor. When my surprise settled I had to laugh: My well planned and crafty security measures have been completely futile.

Lesson of the day

Life happens when you’re planning something else, right?

We can plan as much as we like, life will tweak our noses. There will always be happenings and occurrences that we couldn’t have thought of in our wildest dreams. Does this mean we should prepare less? I don’t think so. Instead draw your lessons from what happened. After all, school’s never out.

Application of the lesson learnt to your business

There are three keys to a successful business:

  1. Preparation
  2. Preparation
  3. Preparation

Prepare for your next meeting, prepare for your customer, and prepare for your employees, colleagues and associates. Prepare your speech, your presentation, your document and your spreadsheet.

But most of all: Prepare for the unexpected. That sounds like a contradiction, but it isn’t. More often than not you should have a “Plan B”. Ask yourself: What is the worst thing that can happen? And then be surprised that most of the things we fear never come to life at all.

And finally: If Plan B fails, I suggest you run through the alphabet.

Tạm biệt,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose


Letters from Vietnam (4): Know thy zippers!

Letters from Vietnam – Part 4

Or should it be: Lessons from Vietnam?

Know thyself

“There are three things extremely hard: steel, a diamond, and to know one’s self.”
Franklin, Benjamin

How true that is. Since we are so close to ourselves we have great difficulty to unbiasedly observe our true “me”. It’s like biting your own teeth, or like describing your glasses without taking them off. Everything that we perceive we perceive through our own filters, i.e. our experience, education and upbringing. Since we are usually not aware of our filters, we find that what we think of ourself equals reality. Other people, who don’t have our filters, observe something completely different when they look at us. This is reason enough for a good debate between two people, like husband and wife, or boss and employee.

This is especially true when it comes to our weaknesses and vulnerabilities. And we will focus on those two elements in this post.

Know your weaknesses and vulnerabilities

So far I have seen a lot of places here in Vietnam and I am enjoying myself very much, even though I miss the people I love and who couldn’t come with me. I have moved hotels within one city, I have stayed in different cities and I always carried my belongings in my backpack. To be precise, I have two backpacks. A small one for day travels and excursions and a bigger one for everything else I need here. When I am hiking the larger backpack accommodates the smaller one, so that I have my hands free to make wild gestures at barking dogs.

These backpacks hold a vast number of pockets. Together with the pockets in my trousers they add up to around twenty, a big deal of them protected by zippers. Every pocket has a specific assignment that I have chosen. There is a pocket for a knife and a lock, one for sanitary tissues (if I accidentally touched something scruffy), one for ATM receipts, tickets and paper mementos I want to keep, one for shoes, one for slippers, one for chargers and adapters, one for the Leatherman, one for small money, one for big money – and if I tell you more I will have to kill you.

My responsibility as a self-reliant traveller is to organise and to keep an overview of the pocket’s content. When I pack my possessions I make sure, that everything gets where it belongs to. Only by doing so I have everything quickly available that I might need.

But to be honest: I am a terrible organiser. The analysis of my personal motivations show me clearly, that organising is one of my weaknesses (On the plus side I’m at my best when flexibility is a demand).

This weakness turns into a vulnerability when I’m in a hurry. Sometimes I have to pack quickly (yes, I’m always late, too) and it has happened more than once that I carried my backpack with a zipper widely open, making my stuff an easy target for any pickpocket.

Hence my…

Lesson learnt

Know thy zippers!

Not only do I run around with my zippers open (not THAT zipper!) I do inapt things when I fumble with my pocket’s content, too. I had bystanders pointing to bank notes that I dropped, credit cards lying under the table, mobile phones in taxis and on chairs, sunglasses falling of my accelerating bike, and only two days ago I left my camera on the dinner table. And mind you, did I mention that I even forgot my passport in my last hotel in Saigon – Gosh! If my bottom wasn’t fixed to my back, it would still be sitting on the motorbike.

Fortunately I haven’t had any loss so far. But note, I am free from loss not because I am such a smart traveller. I owe my luck exclusively to the Vietnamese people who are extremely helpful, friendly and honest. I imagine that in many other countries people would have taken advantage of my stupidity. I feel blessed and I feel grateful.

So, what do my zippers have to do with your business? I’d say quite a lot.

Application of the lesson learnt to your business

The blemish of my organisational skills makes me blind to the details that ultimately secure my safety. Organisation in it self is a weakness of mine, and when certain circumstances join my weakness turns into a vulnerability. If I am vulnerable I can be attacked and even worse, I can lose.

And the same is true for your business. There might be certain areas of your business that – for what ever reason – you have not paid sufficient attention to. Like knowing everything about yourself is tough, knowing everything about your business is tough, too. We are simply too close to ourselves and our business. What helps is an external view or tools that help you reflect on your business and circumvent your personal filters. Tools that will help might be SWAT analysis and/or a change analysis. Contact me, if you need more information.

For now let me close with a thought for the still fresh and young 2013: Don’t get overstressed with your weaknesses. Just make sure you know them and get help. In short:

Count your blessings, not your blemishes.

Tạm biệt,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose



Letters from Vietnam (3): You are a nuisance

Traffic Madness in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam

Letters from Vietnam – Part 3

Or should it be: Lessons from Vietnam?

How to be a part of where you are

Today I will head back from the Island Phú Quốc to Hồ Chí Minh City (Saigon); from the serenity of calm and untouched beaches right into the centre of traffic madness. Saigon currently has approximately 7 – 10 million inhabitants and at least 3 million motorbikes. Since cars are mostly unaffordable for the locals and because it is said that Saigon’s streets are too narrow for cars, Saigon is rightly called ‘City of the Motorbikes’.

In most of the travel literature you are advised not to take part in the traffic driving a scooter yourself. If you want a close motorbike experience at all you should hire a motorbike taxi, put on one of the helmets provided (which are nothing more than mere eggshells) and let the taxi driver do the work.

I highly contradict. Driving a motorbike yourself through these jam-packed streets is the ultimate experience of being part of Saigon (and every where else in Vietnam). In my humble opinion you haven’t been in Saigon if you haven’t been in its traffic as an active driver. If you are there, be there. Be a part of your surroundings, do what works for the locals, don’t do stupid things. And, no, self-driving in Saigon is not stupid. As my friend Carsten at amberwiz always uses to say:

If it is stupid and it works, it ain’t stupid.

There are a lot of things to say about this traffic madness, a lot of things we can learn from it, and hence a lot of insights we can apply for our business. I will frequently come back to the traffic in Saigon to give you a hopefully useful perspective for your business.

Let’s start with an experience that I made myself when I first started driving around on my own. I got honked at quite a lot in the beginning. For a reason. Because in that crazy jumble I was the nuisance.

But since this letter from Vietnam is addressed to you this means…

You are a nuisance

Most people say that traffic in Saigon is chaos. Wrong. Very wrong. Here’s your first lesson:

Only because a system is different it’s not necessarily chaotic.

There is a system in Saigon’s traffic, but it is highly different from what we know from the West. When the traffic lights turn red nobody stops immediately. They keep on driving until the traffic density in the center of the crossing forbids to inject more motorists into it. When the traffic lights turn green, on the other hand, it is very wise not to speed into the crossing blindly. The traffic will still be dripping in for quite a while from the side roads.

After I observed the traffic at major street crossings for quite a while I associated the traffic with two or more fluids flowing into and through each other. Although there are heavy accidents on the highways in Vietnam (full speed frontal collisions) I have rarely seen two motorbikes touching each other here. And if it happens, drivers apology and don’t make a big fuzz about it.

Now it was time for me to be one of the droplets and to jump right into it. Got a bike, put on the eggshell, started driving, and became THE nuisance of Saigon immediately.

If we start doing something we disturb others

As soon we start doing something that interacts with this world we run into the danger of being a disturbance for others. That’s just the way it is. Unless you are sitting on a lonely beach (and even there you’ll squeeze and annoy jiggers) you are always interacting with your environment, i.e. other people.

The reason why I was such a fault in an otherwise perfectly running system was, that I wasn’t used to it. I was an inexperienced tourist trying to survive traffic. I braked where I shouldn’t and I accelerated when I mustn’t. In short: due to my inexperience and lack of certainty I was unpredictable for the system.

So here is the…

Lesson learnt

Be predictable.

Unless you want to surprise your surroundings (which obviously can be a good thing under certain circumstances) be predictable. If you want others to follow you instead of being confused by you, always let them know what you are going to do.

This becomes very evident when you try to make a left turn on a major intersection here in Vietnam. Don’t stop. Don’t try to speed through a gap. Instead slowly, but continuously forward into the direction you want to go. The others will know where you’re heading and find a way around you. But this only works if they exactly know where you are in the next second.

A good ice hockey player doesn’t shoot the puck to the place you are, but to the place you will be in the next second. Same with the traffic here. The “enemy” (i.e. the other drivers) don’t drive to where you are, they are driving towards the spot you will not be in the next second. This often gave me the feeling that they were aiming at me. But they don’t. They don’t aim at me, they aim at the position where I am currently in because it will be empty in the next second.

Uncomfortable as it feels, it’s kinda smart, right?

Application of the lesson learnt to your business

If you are part of a team and if you want to work with the team, let them know what you’re doing. Tell others about your plans so that they can support you and are not accidentally blocking your way. If you tell others what you are doing you are not blocking their development, too.

But be aware that you can be a nuisance when you first start doing things you are not used to so far. It doesn’t matter whether you try to run a marathon, start your new business, or give your first public speech – you will always feel uncomfortable. You will often have the feeling that others are shooting at you. But usually they don’t. They are simply following their own idea of a worthy course.

Time for me to get packed, move on and leave Phú Quốc behind me. I will drive to the Dương Đông airport by motorbike taxi, me and my backpack sitting behind the driver (much cheaper and faster than a regular taxi).

And when I am back in Saigon, driving a motorbike myself again, I will try to ease at the insight, that from the 3 million motorbikes in Saigon one million is right behind me, wondering where this weirdo’s heading.

Tạm biệt,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose



Letters from Vietnam (1): You will always get what you asked for!

Letters from Vietnam – Part 1

Or should it be: Lessons from Vietnam?

Observe, don’t judge

I am currently on a trip through Vietnam. Obviously the people here live very different lives from us westerners – be it behaviour, beliefs, lifestyle, traffic, philosophy… you name it! Although I travel to Asia quite a lot, many of my observations are new to me. Observing without judging is an ongoing challenge for everyone who is interested in personal growth, leadership skills, and self-responsibility. If you are willing to watch first and draw your conclusions second you will never be short of opportunities to become a better ‘you’.

Letters and Lessons from Vietnam

In the next couple of weeks I’ll write some articles about occurrences that happened to me or next to me. In each post I will tell you a little story and I will then draw one ore more conclusions that you can hopefully apply in your everyday business. May be you want to share your conclusions and learnings, too. Feel free to comment on this blog.

Be precise, don’t assume

And here is my first story for you.

I arrived in Ho-Chi-Minh-City (Saigon) a couple of days ago. I had made a two-night online reservation for a hotel from Germany already, because after a long flight I don’t like to run around for room-hunting with my backpack in a city that is unknown to me. The hotel was ok, but the rooms didn’t have individual safes and the hotel was not very clean. You can find pictures of the bedlinen on facebook. During my city strolls through Saigon I past the hotel Tuong Hung. I asked the owner to show me a room and I was very pleased to see, that the wardrobes had safes in them. We agreed on the price and the next day I moved in.

After I had taken over the room I was rather bewildered that in this room the wardrobe was not equipped with a safe – to have a safe of my own was one of the reasons why I moved to this hotel!

So I went to the owner and asked for clarification. She was very understanding and apologised and said I should go for a walk and when I will have returned everything would be to my full satisfaction.

So I went to visit the Palace of Reunification and came back after a couple of hours. In the lobby the owner’s daughter cheerfully smiled at me and nodded to let me know that everything was taken care of. She said to me: “You wanted a locker?” – “Yes, please.” I replied. Then she jumped behind the counter and reappeared with a safe in her hands, that she affectionately handed over to me.

I kid you not. It was a safe that is usually fixed to a wall inside a wardrobe now unrigged in my baffled hands. After my first confusion I had to laugh because the staff had perfectly fulfilled my demands.

Who’s stupid?

Lesson learnt: You will always get what you asked for!

They had perfectly fulfilled my request. I asked for a safe, they gave me a safe. What I really wanted – obviously! obviously? – was a room equipped with a fixed safe that can not be carried away by a hamster (or a drunken tourist for that matter, who is looking for sponsorship of his travel funds). But I didn’t say that and hence I have no right to complain.

Application of the lesson learnt to your business

Be very clear in your communication. If what you want is important for you, then make sure that everyone who is engaged with the delivery has an exact understanding of the demands. If you don’t get what you (thought you) asked for, then consult your service providers, suppliers or employees and let them explain what they understood. Their understanding certainly differed from yours.

As you see, once again, to be a good communicator you need to be a good thinker and a good listener, too.

Tạm biệt,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose


Früh an die Nachkommen denken

Wenn zwei Menschen das Wort “Nachkommen” hören, werden sie kaum die selbe Assoziation haben. Der eine denkt vielleicht an seine Kinder, während der andere an die Nachfolger für das eigene Unternehmen denkt. Natürlich schließt das Eine das Andere nicht aus, aber heute habe ich ein Geschenk für Ihre Kinder. Und dieses Geschenk wird Sie ziemlich cool aussehen lassen.

Auch im Business Zeit für die eigenen Kinder haben

Obwohl es sich hier um einen Blog rund um Business (Coaching) handelt, will ich Ihnen heute einen Tipp geben, mit dem Sie sich in der Beliebtheitsskala Ihrer eigenen Kindern ganz weit nach oben katapultieren können. Ich will Ihnen gar nicht mit Work-Life-Balance und Themen wie “mehr Manager auf die Spielplätze” kommen. Stattdessen gebe ich Ihnen ein Werkzeug an die Hand, mit dem Sie mit Mitteln, die Ihre Kinder nutzen und verstehen, ganz groß punkten können.

Einzige Voraussetzung ist, dass die Kinder alt genug sind um Social Media zu nutzen. Insbesondere Facebook.

Kinder da abholen, wo sie sich aufhalten

Wenn Facebook so ein toller Erfolg ist, dann können Sie sich Facebook ganz einfach zu Nutze machen. Teilen Sie einfach eines der folgenden drei Bilder. Sie können die Bilder selbst zu Ihrer eigenen Timeline zu fügen, oder Sie klicken einfach “Like” oder “Teilen” auf meiner Timeline. Alles funktioniert. Und alles wird Sie zum Superstar Ihrer Kinder machen.

Hier also die drei Bilder, die Sie frei benutzen dürfen.

Teile dies, wenn Du stolz auf Deine Kinder bist.

Teile dies, wenn Du stolz auf Deine Kinder bist.

Teile dies, wenn Du stolz auf Deine Tochter bist.

Teile dies, wenn Du stolz auf Deine Tochter bist.

Teile dies, wenn Du stolz auf Deinen Sohn bist.

Teile dies, wenn Du stolz auf Deinen Sohn bist.


Weiterführende Literatur

Und falls Sie doch etwas über Unternehmensnachfolge lesen wollten, dann kann ich Ihnen die folgenden Bücher empfehlen.




Business Coaching Köln steht Ihnen als kompetenter Ansprechpartner für Coaching im Business zur Verfügung: Konsequent, zielstrebig, gradlinig. | Düsseldorf – Köln – Bonn


Der Eiscreme-Test

Eiscreme-Test

Mit dem Eiscreme-Test für Manager und Führungskräfte können Sie ganz schnell feststellen, wie ernst Ihnen eine Sache ist, wie gut Sie einen Sachverhalt verstanden haben und wie sicher Sie sich einer Sache sind.


Von Kindern lernen

Der Eiscreme-Test ist eine wichtige Lektion, die man von Kindern lernen kann. Er hat übrigens nichts mit der Qualität von Eis zu tun, sondern damit, wie sicher Sie sich einer Sache sind.

Wenn schon fragen, dann richtig

Kinder können großartige Lehrer sein. Das liegt nicht daran, dass die Kinder schlau sind. Im Gegenteil: Die meisten Kinder wissen viel weniger als Erwachsene und sie sind als Berater von Erwachsenen nur sehr eingeschränkt geeignet.

Kinder sind deshalb so große Lehrer, weil sie nicht darauf achten, was die Großen sagen, sondern was die Großen tun. Und hier halten Sie uns gnadenlos den Spiegel vor.

Kinder merken sehr schnell, wenn wir Ihnen ausweichende Antworten geben. Dann haken sie gerne nach und irgendwann müssen wir kapitulieren und damit wir sie zum Schweigen bringen, kaufen wir ihnen halt ein Eis.

Stellen Sie sich folgende Situation vor: Sie waren gerade etwas nachlässig und haben ein kleines Stückchen Papier, das Sie gerade nicht entsorgen können, fallen lassen; dabei haben Sie gehofft, dass das niemand mitbekommt. Dummerweise steht neben Ihnen Ihr Kind und stellt Sie nun zur Rede.

Kind: “Ich dachte, man darf kein Papier fallen lassen.”
Sie: “Stimmt, das darf man auch nicht.”
Kind: “Aber Du hast gerade etwas fallen gelassen.”
Sie: “Ja, aber das war ja nur ein winziges Stückchen.”
Kind: “Darf man alles auf den Boden werfen, falls es klein genug ist?”
Sie: “Nein, das sollte man besser nicht tun.”
Kind: “Aber Dein Papier durftest Du fallen lassen?”
Sie: “Willst Du ein Eis?”

So funktioniert der Eiscreme-Test

Wenn Sie denken, Sie haben etwas verstanden oder Sie haben sich etwas Wichtiges vorgenommen, dann machen Sie den Eiscreme-Test. Stellen Sie Ihre Erklärungen immer wieder (mindestens fünf Mal) in Frage und beantworten Sie Ihre Fragen so genau wie möglich. “Warum?” ist hier eine sehr gut geeignete Frage.

Wenn Sie nach der fünften Frage immer noch Ihre ursprünglichen Gedanken verteidigen oder rechtfertigen können, dann sind Sie auf einem guten Weg. Wenn Sie sich aber in der Zwischenzeit ein Eis gekauft haben, dann sollten Sie noch Mal von vorne anfangen.

Dabei wünsche ich Ihnen viel Erfolg!
Ihr,
Herzlichst,  Ihr Dr. Thomas Rose



Weiterführende Literatur

Psychologie und Projektmanagement

Angewandte Psychologie für das Projektmanagement. Ein Praxisbuch für die erfolgreiche Projektleitung von Wastian, Braumandl und Rosenstiel.

Psychologie und Entscheidungen

Die Psychologie der Entscheidung: Eine Einführung von Jungermann, Pfister und Fischer.


Business Coaching Köln steht Ihnen als kompetenter Ansprechpartner für Coaching im Business zur Verfügung: Konsequent, zielstrebig, gradlinig. | Düsseldorf – Köln – Bonn | info(at)business-coaching-koeln.com