Roy's Blog: Careers

January 14, 2019

6 mammoth barriers to being successful

What’s preventing you from reaching your career goals?

I’ve completed more than three decades of leadership. I’ve seen many people achieve beyond their wildest expectations and I’ve witnessed individuals fall short of realizing their dreams.

Why are some successful and others are not?

My conclusions are not based on science, but rather on observing over many years that individuals who are blocked by the following barriers tend to underachieve while those who avoid them perform better and realize greater success.


Not enough contacts

Some people simply don’t have enough contacts; their network is too small to effectively exploit the potential opportunities that are out there.

A broad network exposes more possibilities; a narrow network is more restrictive and is likely to present chances in fewer disciplines to choose from.

To avoid this barrier, develop a game plan to expand your personal network. Remember to target quality contacts rather than trying to acquire arbitrary social media connections.

You will get a higher return (measured by the potential to supply you with job opportunities) from 100 quality LinkedIn connections, for example, than 1,000 Twitter followers or FB friends.

Too much reliance on education

Of course education is vital to success but don’t count on it to make you successful.

I look at an academic pedigree as the ante to play the career game. You need the piece of paper to play the game but it won’t guarantee you’ll win it.

Too many young professionals enter the work world expecting to be treated favourably because they have toiled for 8 years to graduate with status in a specific discipline. They feel entitled to get the opportunities that come available because of the knowledge they’ve gained.

But that’s not the way it works. Success depends on what you DO with what you know; how you leverage your knowledge into amazing results for who you work for.
So take your piece of paper, suck everything you can out of it you can, and DO stuff with it.
The more clever you are at getting stuff done, the more successful you’ll be.

The other barrier associated with education is the tendency for everyone to approach problem solving the same way. They were taught a specific way to do things at school and they relentlessly comply with the academic rules leaving no room to be different.
Compliance leaves you like everyone else; approaching things differently will make you standout and more successful.

Copying others

There is too much emphasis on copying others under the guise of innovation.


Copying best practices and doing what best in class organizations do runs rampant.
When faced with a “How should we do this?” challenge, the first response by most professionals is to find a best practise and try to copy and implement it.

Successful people don’t automatically turn to a solution that someone else has thought of and used; they search for a unique approach that stands out from the crowd of best practices to become THE best practice.
The successful aspire to BE the benchmark for others to copy.

Copying is the antithesis of creativity; don’t be lured into believing that emulation is the route to anything else but what the crowd does.

The wrong kind of mentor

Someone who is intellectually brilliant but has never DONE much to successfully implement a worthy solution in the real world unfortunately attracts mentees.

Young people looking for a mentor are infatuated by the number of letters behind a person’s name as opposed to the list of things they have successfully implemented in the face of chaotic market forces.

This is a huge barrier to success because it assumes high performance comes from the intellect and it doesn’t. It comes from the passion and “fire in the belly” of individuals who are driven to achieve.

Find a mentor who has a rich history of accomplishments; someone who has demonstrated they are unafraid of getting dirty to deliver. Listen to THAT person rather than the IQ ladened one.

Not staying on the learning path

Some people fall victim to believing that there are limits to what you have to learn to achieve success; that once you have amassed a certain amount of knowledge you can stop the learning process.


It’s almost like they believe the momentum created by what they’ve learned up to now will carry them into the future.
Wrong! Success is achieved not by a “one hit wonder” but by a continuous stream of awesome accomplishments over the long term. It’s a function of performing consistently at a high level.

And the only way long term a high level of consistency can be attained is by learning 24X7X365 because the world keeps changing and the only way to keep up and adapt is to stream new knowledge into your head constantly.

Reliance on what worked yesterday

What got you here will surely get you to where you need to go, right?

After all, you’ve been successful doing certain things well and it paid off, so why wouldn’t it continue to pay off in the future?

The truth is, if your new challenge had all the properties of the past challenges you successfully defeated, then maybe you could get by with sticking to the practices that worked for you then.

But that’s not the real world. Things change and there’s no such thing as a challenge that “looks” the same as yesterday. The world changes. New competitors enter. Technology disruption happens. Customer demands change.

NOTHING stays the same.

So if you really think sticking to your tried and true strategy and approach to your job will keep working into an environment of constant change and unpredictability, good luck with that.

It won’t. Successful people always ask themselves what they have to do differently with each new experience.

6 barriers to success, but all can be overcome with just a little bit of a different attitude.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead book series

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  • Posted 1.14.19 at 03:18 am by Roy Osing
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January 4, 2019

5 ultimate ways to be insanely more hireable — guest post


It’s a tough job market out there. You need to stand out from all other candidates in order to get hired and to do that, you will not only need skills, you will also have to be passionate and dedicated to attract employers.

And you will need to be eager to learn more.

However, sometimes the competition is so fierce that you simply have to take your odds from good to great. Some improvements may take some time, while others you can obtain fast, but nonetheless, they are all a contributing factor to your future employment.

To succeed, you need to use some of the following ultimate ways to educate yourself in order to be more hireable in the job market of the 21st century.

Become a storyteller

Employers are interested in your college education, high school, and other accomplishments. Those will determine if you fit the requirements for the job so they don’t waste time interviewing unqualified persons.
But that doesn’t mean you don’t have to be creative and leave a positive impression from the first communication you have with the prospective employer.

Since you should keep the resume professional, concentrate on a motivation letter in order to make your voice unique. Do some research about the employer and tell them a story of why you are the best candidate for the job.
Essentially, you have to become a storyteller and describe yourself professionally and personally in an interesting and charming kind of way.


Add value before you’re hired or interviewed

Adding value to your resume doesn’t end when you fill in all the necessary fields. Once you have all the facts in front of you, it is time to tailor your resume for every job ad you apply to.
Omit the facts that are unimportant for certain employer and thus highlight the values that matter.

To do this, you have to prepare a new resume for each employer and make certain qualities and experience stand out. Ask yourself what is the best you can offer to the employer and let that be the center of your resume with appropriate evidence.

Employers like to see resumes specifically made for them since that shows them you are truly interested in their job offer.

Find a mentor or a partner

Instead of doing it all alone, find a mentor or a partner to learn more about the job you are applying to.
This is actually an effective solution for those who need to know more details about what to expect from the future job position. Ask a friend or search your social media for people who have some expertise in the matter and can explain some things to you.

LinkedIn, forums, Reddit and other online communities can offer valuable insights and also help you broaden your network. If you know someone who works at the employer who posted the ad, see if they are willing to tell you more about the conditions and what the job entails.
Everything is easier with a mentor or a partner, so don’t be shy and ask for help in order to prepare for the job interview.

Dig into available resources

There is always an opportunity to learn new skills and expand your knowledge. If you are a foreigner looking for a job abroad, attending an English college, for example, would get your proficiency in the language.
In case you want to broaden your knowledge of Microsoft Office, a certificate that states you completed a course would certainly improve your chances to get the job.

However, it’s important to stay focused when it comes to acquiring certificates and attending courses. If you start randomly obtaining certificates, the employer may see you as too scattered and someone without a goal.
And when it comes to hiring, employers want a person that is dependable and resolute, not undecided what they want to be.


Do the research

Research is a crucial way to educate yourself and be more hireable in the 21st century when basically everything is available on social media.

Start off by doing the research about the employer and the person who will perform the interviews. That way you can find out what approach to take, how to dress and how to make yourself more interesting and appealing during the job interview.

Then, do the research about the job position the employer is offering even though it may sound familiar enough. The same job title at different companies may include various obligations and this where research would be of great help.

By knowing these facts you would be able to better understand what the job requires and tell the employer why you can do it successfully.

In the end

In order to be hireable in the 21st century, you can’t be lazy and simply apply wherever you can. Clean your social media accounts and tailor the resume specifically for every job offer you apply to. That way you will highlight your qualities and help employers see that you would be a great addition to the team.

Leila Dorari is an entrepreneur, self-development ambassador and an avid dog lover. She believes all people are born equal but only those dedicated and brave enough to work on themselves reach their full potential.

Leila Dorari

  • Posted 1.4.19 at 04:03 am by Roy Osing
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December 28, 2018

How what you eat can make you standout in a crowd — guest post


Essentially, we are all special but have a hard time expressing our uniqueness.

That is why many people, no matter how talented they are, simply fall into the crowd and become average. The battle to be different is a constant one and the best weapon for self-awareness is being in a good mood.

This sounds simple enough but it is really hard to be in the radiant mood all the time. This takes a lot of time and effort that would be unimaginable without some extra help.
The support from your friends and family is welcoming but there are more physical, or physiological ways you can boost your mood and really stand out from the crowd.

“We are what we eat” is an adage that could not be truer in the case of our daily mood. It is true that there are certain types of food that influence our mood.
By consuming them regularly we can actively influence the way we feel.
The right diet could help us smile more, lead a better life, and stay healthy, so there is no reason not to discover the wonderful world of mood-boosting foods.


Cereals are an important part of any diet and they are something that children love to eat for breakfast with milk.
This should not come as a surprise as oats and other cereals constitute a healthy and organic breakfast option.

When it comes to making us smile more, oats, in particular, contain the right ingredients. They have a low glycemic index which means that they release energy slowly, keeping blood sugar levels stable at all times.

Since sugar intake is to be blamed for hyperactive behavior, this means that our mood will gradually become better in a matter of seconds.

Anyone who gets a rush from a chocolate candy bar might want to consider switching to sweets with oats in them.

To top it all, oats are rich in selenium as well. If you dislike the taste cereals have, besides milk, you can always add honey, nuts, yogurt or fruits to add to the flavor and further boost the protein intake.


The popular myth that spinach is rich in iron has been proven false but does not mean that spinach isn’t nutritious — quite the contrary.

It is rich in vitamin B, the deficiency of which has been linked to depression.
Since vitamin B3, B6, and B12 can be found in spinach, its regular consumption has the potential to slow the development of depression and in combination with other foods listed here, it can even stop it altogether.


The best thing about spinach is that there are several ways to eat it since it is not the main course. It can be a salad if eaten raw and seasoned with olive oil and garlic. However, most frequently it is served as a side dish to meat.

Regardless of how you decide to consume it, spinach, alongside its counterpart broccoli, can have a tangible effect on your mood, so don’t skip it next time it is on the table, literally.

Whey protein

Staying hydrated is an important aspect of working out.

We see bodybuilders constantly carrying bottles around the gym but they are not always filled with water.
In many cases, they contain whey protein, which is a mixture of 80% casein and 20% whey. Essentially, whey is the results of dairy processing that is grinded into a powder low in lactose that contains nine amino acids.
It is not just a great source of protein ideal for athletes but it is rich in minerals like calcium and vitamins such as B12.
As mentioned earlier, this vitamin, in particular, is effective in fighting depression, so all gym-goers can use whey protein to feel more relaxed while exercising.

Unfortunately, many beginners are put off by the fact that they do not know how to properly introduce whey protein to their diet, despite numerous online guides providing information on how to get True Protein the right way.
In fact, this is true for many food types listed here, so you must inform yourself well before you include oats or spinach in your diet as well.


This life-giving liquid on our list is perhaps the most unexpected item. You are probably wondering: how can plain water contribute to my radiant smile?

Well, the answer is quite simple. Staying hydrated all the time is essential for our health. Once even the mildest form of dehydration sets in, there can be no talk of a good mood or any other mood for that matter. That is why it is important to stick to the recommended daily water intake amount of some two liters, which sums up to some eight glasses a day.

This may seem excessive, but this is the amount that we need to function properly, both physically and mentally.  Remember, even the fruit you eat is rich in water, so this counts in our daily goal.


If you are finding it difficult to hydrate sufficiently, try getting a recyclable water bottle and carrying it at your person everywhere you go. This way, you could take a sip every time you have nothing better to do, like waiting at the dentist’s office.

Needless to say, don’t take too much water at once, like gulping down an entire liter. Like with many things in life, overkilling it is not the answer.

Finally, never let it slip your mind that positive mood should be consistent. This is why any change in your diet, regardless of which item or items from this list you decide to include, should essentially be a long-term change.
The radiant mood you are aiming for can only come as the result of a painstaking process that will have to include a lot of self-discipline.

However, do not fall into despair, because persistence is exactly what the crowd lacks. And plus, you’ve got a secret weapon up your sleeve to help you succeed: mood-boosting food.

Mia Johnson is a freelance writer with a ten-year long career in journalism. She has written extensively about health, fitness, and lifestyle. A native to Melbourn, she now lives in Sidney with her 3 dogs where she spends her days writing and taking care of her 900 square feet garden.

Mia Johnson

  • Posted 12.28.18 at 05:00 am by Roy Osing
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December 24, 2018

How you can get a breakthrough in your career

For those of you who remember your philosophy courses, here’s a syllogism which is undeniably true.

— People who don’t comply with the rules — the “should do’s” of society; the accepted principles promulgated by academia; the standard ways of doing things as practiced by individuals and organizations — get noticed;
— And people who get noticed typically have more opportunities than those who are invisible to those around and above them;
— Ergo if you don’t follow the rule system of the day, you will get more chances to succeed.


Breaking the law is extreme

In the extreme case, breaking the law will definitely get you noticed, but incarceration is not likely to be defined as success. But there is a safe spot for breaking the rules of the day and separating yourself from the trends of the crowd where winners are borne. 

The challenge for any person in society to get their ideas heard by decision makers is to find a way to break through the masses, hence the reason for the myriad of self interest groups that exist today. They organize themselves, create a message and push it out to people, hoping it will resonate and garner support.

It’s no different for an individual in an organization who is trying to break through the mass of employees all trying to rise to the top. They have to determine a path through the barrage of self interest messages directed at leadership to get their ideas and point of view listened to.

The competition for mind share of leadership is intense; everyone is looking for the career “fast break” that could come from getting recognized by the top guys.

How do you break through the clutter created by so many people chasing so few opportunities?

One thing is for certain: it’s not by looking like everyone else around you in terms of what you do and how you do it. These are the people who live in a world of compliance and conformity; they follow the rules, copy best practices and perform their responsibilities by following the ways of the established crowd — “experts” and academics who declare the right way to do things and convince others to follow them.

Following the crowd will bury you in it

Follow the crowd

Following the actions of any crowd won’t get you noticed; it has the opposite effect. It reinforces that you ARE a member of the crowd and that you have no personal unique identity.
Imagine yourself in the crowd of candidates applying for an entry position in a company. Out of the 100 or so people who have declared their interest, how do you intend to get your name on the short list of 10 high potential individuals who will earn a face-to-face interview?
Do you really think you’re route to the short list is looking like the other 99 applicants; by following a boilerplate résumé everyone uses?

Trust me. Having been in the position of having to hire so many people for so many positions — from junior analysts to vice-presidents — my eyes glaze over when I read most people’s job applications whether they were in written form or on a job website.
Most looked the same, offered nothing unique; I ignored them.

I regularly counsel young professionals, and my conclusion thus far at least is that “doing what you’re told” has been so driven into their skulls from their early years and during their academic life that it subconsciously defines their modus operandi when they are pursuing a career.

In school, they are taught the principles on such subjects as preparing a résumé, developing an effective business or marketing plan, motivating people, managing conflict, recruiting high performing individuals, leadership, generating new ideas and good team play.

The authors of the rule book for each subject tend to be academics or theoreticians who advocate a specific theory or approach on their subject of expertise; those who have several papers published on a topic tend to be chosen by the curriculum designers as the voice for that particular topic.

Colouring inside the lines is expected

Inside the lines

Young professionals are taught to colour inside the lines — apply the principles they are taught — perfectly.

Unfortunately, this sets up the false expectation that one’s success is determined by how well they conform; by how accurately they remember and apply the scriptures of the experts.

But exactly the opposite is true.

My personal experience as an IT analyst, marketing product manager, marketing director, vice president, CMO and president taught me to look for opportunities to do things differently even if it meant breaking with tradition.
Even if it meant taking a contrary point of view and swimming upstream to current thinking.

Even if it meant startling the crowd of traditionalists who were mortified that unbelievable results could be achieved by not conforming to best practices or by not following exactly what the pundits prescribed.

They were horrified because there was mounting evidence to support the view that amazing results could be achieved by breaking with tradition; by denying common practices.

Leaders notice when you step out to step up.

They ask about you.

And if they like what they hear, they pull you from the herd and give you a chance the herd rarely gets.


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  • Posted 12.24.18 at 05:04 am by Roy Osing
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