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  1. The time for change – By Narelle Hess

    January 6, 2015 by Jenna

    It’s strange how a brand new year makes us re-assess our life and priorities. As the clock struck midnight to the end of 2014, I know many friends and acquaintances that were so happy to open a brand new blank page. A new year provides us a chance to make resolutions for those changes we want to make. But as we all know most NYE resolutions fail. Why? For most it can be summarised in two key roadblocks: fear of change and our own self-doubt. We all know there are areas of our career, relationships or personal development that need to change – so how do we overcome the fear and self-doubt?

    The first key roadblock is the fear of change. Forced and unforced change leads to an unpredictable response. From denial to frustration to anger to tears to joy and right back around again. I’ve worked with those on the precipice of wanting to change, coached those leading organisational change, and supported those experiencing forced changes. All take effort, commitment, and hard work. But as one of my clients said to me just this week: “without risks come no rewards”. Without change there is no progress. However, for change to be successful we not only need to commit to the needed changes, we also need to identify a support team. Because you will go through that unpredictable emotional response, you’re only human. What changes do you need make? And more importantly who will help you keep accountable and cheer your successes towards the changes you need to make this year? (To watch a TED talk on what fear can teach us click here).

    The second roadblock is our own self-confidence to make these needed changes. Most of us suffer from imposter syndrome. I am constantly waiting for someone to unmask me. Discover my inferiority. Most of us feel this way. Even award winning scientists needing to “sell” themselves for a new job to leading executives tasked with taking a new leadership challenge. I have met clients from all corners of this country and even different corners of this globe. Analysed many psychometric profiles, coached, trained, facilitated, debated and had many invigorating conversations. People are fascinating and all have more strengths than what they acknowledge and appreciate. We each have so much potential to do amazing things, if we allow ourselves to. Take some time to identify and acknowledge your strengths, and value them. What are your key strengths that will help you make the changes you need to make? (To read more about the Self Saboteur click here).

    And with that, it must now be time for me to write my own new chapter. After 10 years building my career at Challenge Consulting, I’m about to embark on a brand new career adventure. I’m proud of what I’ve built and I’m equally excited to see where Steve and the team will go next. You are all in very capable hands. I’m taking with me fond memories, much laughter and joy, great friendships, exceptional mentors – and most importantly – the lessons that each of you have given me – be it a client that has challenged me, your moment of personal discovery, or an example of great leadership. You all have made the last 10 years exceptional and helped me to develop the all-important skills I need to jump into this next chapter. (To read more about how I developed my career click here).

    I wish you all an abundance of success. Take the time you need to identify the changes you need to make, develop your own plan, and more importantly develop the self-confidence you need to write your next chapter. For those that want to follow my next career adventure, you can connect with me on LinkedIn at

    I will now leave you in the very capable hands of my colleagues at Challenge Consulting to support your recruitment, psychometric testing, career transition, and organisational development needs. Find out more about the team here or call the Challenge Consulting office on 02 9221 6422 to discuss your requirements.

  2. Are You A Confident Person?

    August 28, 2012 by Jenna

    Self-confidence – let’s just say some of us are born with it, and for others it can take almost a lifetime to achieve.

    In business it can be vital, being confident in yourself is infectious, if you present yourself well, others will want to follow in your foot steps towards success.

    Unfortunately many of us are not as self-confident as we should be. Many successful people, regardless of the success they have achieved, don’t believe in themselves. Are you sabotaging yourself through your lack of self-confidence?

    • Avoiding doing certain things because you fear your ability to cope.
    • Covering your lack of confidence by pretending, to hide the way you really feel.
    • Withdrawing from other people in certain situations
    • Regularly thinking negative thoughts about yourself and your abilities.

    When taking on more responsibilities in the workplace, this can also be a test of one’s self-confidence, whether it is being confident in the new role, confidence to deliver the project adequately, or just overall being confident in front of your colleagues. I know for myself I have had to develop my own self-confidence as I have faced new challenges. I have taken on many different roles and positions of authority within the workplace, and when dealing with colleagues and clients, I have had to learn to grow and adapt in each new challenge, and as some of these positions had a certain aspect of ‘sales’, if I didn’t project myself in a confident manner, the sale would not be made. I’ve even had to develop the confidence to pursue a new career path, which for anyone is a big step outside of the comfort zone.

    I have had to learn to be more self-confident with each new challenge that I have faced. Steven Berglas from Forbes outlines this development of self-confidence as two phases:

    Phase 1 – Eliminating Self-Doubt

    1. Understand it’s origins – Stemming from childhood, since no one can live up to the standards set by ego ideals, we spend the rest of our lives (to greater or lesser degrees), plagued by doubt. This is irrational, of course, but true.
    2. Accept it – There’s a school of psychotherapy—called “acceptance therapy”—based on the insight that admitting you suffer from a problem reduces the distress it can cause.
    3. Fess up – Chances are that real acceptance won’t kick in without sharing your anxiety with someone you trust. Think you’ll flub a presentation? Give one to friends.
    4. Look at the facts – If a claustrophobic person gets stuck in an elevator, it’s hard for them to focus on the certainty that, any minute now, it will be moving again. Fear and panic simply take over. The same tendency is true with self-doubt, but unlike with claustrophobia, a few hard facts can help. Example: If you’ve been promoted somewhat recently, remind yourself why you were tapped. Make a list of all your valuable skills and accomplishments.

    Phase 2 – Boosting Self Confidence

    1. Know that nothing is inherently threatening – A dreadful event can be made manageable if you tell yourself you have the stuff to cope with it. Remember that.
    2. Confront your fear – Fear, no matter its source, is a formidable adversary. That’s why you have to pick a fight with it. William Jennings Bryan claimed, “The way to develop self-confidence is to do the thing you fear.”
    3. But choose your battles – If you pick the battles you engage in because you believe in their aims, your self-confidence will increase along with your winning percentage.
    4. Once you master something, stretch – Add more challenge to every task you tackle and your self-confidence will grow in lockstep. Level off for too long and you’ll be on the slick slope to burnout.

    Have you always been a confident person? If not, what measures did you have to take to achieve where you wanted to go within the workplace?

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