Laugh for your life

Laugh for your life

” There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humour.”   – Charles Dickens One day many years ago, my dad was driving my sister and I to school when he burst out laughing. The first 5 minutes he laughed, I thought he was crazy. But then the magic of laughter spread and my sister and I had joined in on the random laughter.   No, he wasn’t crazy- he was just doing some morning laughter yoga.  He had heard all about Dr Madan Kataria’s Laughter Yoga practice the day before on the radio. Fast forward ten years…. I am sitting in a yoga studio in Bangalore, India with 35  professionals from 13 different countries and we are laughing. Really loud for a really long time. We are all becoming globally certified Laughter Yoga Professors and receiving our training from  the Founder himself- Dr Madan Kataria. So just what is Laughter Yoga and how do you do it? I interviewed Dr Madan Kataria to ask him how laughter yoga can impact us both at home and in the boardroom.   Did you find yourself laughing?  Good!  My invitation to you TODAY:  laugh a little bit longer today and notice how you feel. Interested in trying out some laughter yoga with friends or colleagues at work? Great!  Contact me at tania@taniadesa.com  and let’s bring more laughter into your...
Do you own your corporate ladder?

Do you own your corporate ladder?

Work to become, not to acquire.  -Elbert Hubbard     Earlier this week, I was honored to be part of a leadership panel to spark a discussion around diversity and leadership in the workplace. I shared the stage with an accomplished employment equity lawyer and founder of The Hum Firm, Lai-King Hum and global gender equality specialist from Because I am a Girl Canada Mary Bridger.  With people spilling out of the doorway, we were asked to offer advice and personal stories of challenges and triumphs in climbing our own corporate ladders. Lively discussion ensued as we broke out in to roundtable discussions around the topic of diversity in the workplace and female leadership development.   Here are some of the highlights of the evening: How to Own Your Corporate Ladder from Tania DeSa on Vimeo. Gems from the night include: →  Be shameless when it comes to standing up for your career. →  Keep a list of accomplishments as a personal reminder to not undervalue yourself. →  Speak up at every meeting you’re in. Add something and make sure your voice is heard.   Give yourself permission to be new and learn. You don’t have to know everything on Day 1… Click To Tweet →  When you are new in the industry, say yes to opportunities- you never know what they could lead to.   Own your #worth then build a case to ask for what you want @ Passionigniter @NAAAPToronto Click To Tweet →  Mentors and sponsors are key to taking your career to the next level.   →  Start before you feel ready. You don’t need 100% of the...
3 Ways to Pitch Ideas at Work

3 Ways to Pitch Ideas at Work

Ideas are essential to drive change forward. You probably come up with a few brilliant ideas each week yet how many never leave your lips? The power behind ideas only comes when they leave you and touch others. In order to do that, you have to “pitch” your ideas so that others understand them then act on them. “We think good ideas to death, when we should be acting them to life.” – Brian G. Jett Pitching doesn’t have to be intimidating. In fact, here are 3 practical strategies to help you pitch your ideas more persuasively starting today.       Now, its time to leap into action.   What do you want people to know, feel and do @DanielPink @passionigniter Click To Tweet   Think of one idea that has the potential to inspire and instigate action in others. Choose one or even all three of the strategies you just learnt and ACT. Then tell us all about it below in the comments section. We’re your Leadership Peeps, we want to know.   For more info on Daniel Pink’s “To Sell is Human” click here or here.        ...
Living Room Leadership

Living Room Leadership

In a recent blog post,  Richard Branson shared how he grew his business acumen and adventurous spirit from his mother. He stated “ we most commonly derive inspiration and character-shaping qualities from our home environments – whether we realise it or not. I am most definitely who I am today because of my parents.” Richard got me reflecting on how my parents have moulded me into the woman I am today and how my style of leadership has been influenced since birth. So here’s a summary of homegrown leadership lessons: My parents speak to EVERYONE. I’m sure my sisters and I were taught not to talk to strangers as children but as soon as it was safe enough, we were encouraged to talk to as many random people as possible. My parents modelled this behaviour so well. My mom’s energy is magnetic and my dad’s sense of curiosity makes him an outstanding listener. They are a conversation powerhouse, connecting with strangers is a natural gift that they have perfected over the course of my lifetime. I think their secret is to observe what’s going on around them, let curiosity lead and then to courageously ask a question without the fear of how the other person may respond. As a kid, I remember grocery store trips taking forever because my mom would talk to people in line or getting special treatment at the dentist’s office because my dad knew the receptionist’s life story. Talking to strangers has been rewarding for them. It has not only led to new friendships but also business opportunities and even free places to stay on their...
Ripple of Influence

Ripple of Influence

What comes to your mind when you hear the word Leadership? Some people think of a C-suite executive or political figure on the global stage. Others think of the older kid on the playground or the eldest in a family tribe. The truth is, we are all leaders. Each and every one of us has social influence. We have the ability to persuade others to change behaviour or to see things a different way and act on it.  Most of the time, we just don’t choose to take on the title of Leader. Perhaps its the ‘bigness’ of the title that deters us from taking the littlest of actions. In this short and heart-warming TEDx talk, Drew Dudley shares a story of ‘Everyday Leadership’ where he describes how we have the power to influence others…and not even know it. Have you experienced a ‘lollipop’ moment lately? @NuanceDrew Click To Tweet Can you think of someone who influenced you with a small act? Did you acknowledge them for it? If you have the chance, I encourage you to reach out to them and tell them. Since hearing Drew’s talk, I’ve been more aware of moments of influence in everyday life.  I have recently written to authors whose articles and books have impacted me. When a friend says something so insightful that it moves me to act differently, I tell them.  In return, it warms my heart when I hear that I have influenced and impacted someone else. Its a small way to remind ourselves that we are in fact, being seen and heard everyday.  Acknowledgement of everyday #leadership can create...
Dirty secrets of WOOing in the workplace

Dirty secrets of WOOing in the workplace

The ability to WOO is essential in business and in life. According to Gallup Organization’s StrengthFinder methodology, WOO stands for Winning Others Over  (what did you think it stood for?) There are countless situations in the workplace when you will need to influence people- to invite them to see a different point of view ….and then motivate them to exchange value with you. You may be gaining time, money or resources from them but you have to convince them to part with this value first. “Leadership is influence” @JohnCMaxwell @Passionigniter Click To Tweet The ability to influence others is a key leadership skill, yet, it is one of many that tends to make us feel dirty or we feel less confident about using; especially when compared to a more extroverted colleague. Many of us tend to leap into action before putting some strategic thought or intent behind building a proper case to WOO. Investing in some preparation can actually save you time in the WOOing process. Here are 3 key strategies to help you WOO faster and more effectively: 1. Begin with the end in mind: It is easy to get distracted by shiny objects or issues that actually have no bearing on the change you want to achieve. It is easy to allow the smallest comment to ignite a massive tangent that takes everyone off track and staring away from the common goal. Bring focus to the topic from the start. Envision what success looks like, then share it with everyone so the direction and end outcome is clear. This is especially key in a group setting. Articulate...