Green salad juice almost

With radishes, celery, lettuce, cucumber. Awesome. Let’s see how it goes down.

Goals vs Objectives

This one is probably slightly easier. Some may say simplistic. Again, I see these terms interchanged constantly and therefore I want to clarify them (this is only in my mind).

Goals are broad objectives. (Probably not a helpful start). An objective is a concrete action that should be taken. Example? Why of course. An objective could be to deliver a training course to X number of people during 2012. The goal related to that… develop COMPETENCE (see what I did there?) in the organisation during 2012. Is that distinct?

When I think about anything strategic I like to visualize it. Now my drawing ability is second to everyone so I will attempt to paint you a picture with my words. Imagine you want to go on a journey. Ask yourself the following questions:

Where do you want to go? (That is your goal, it is your destination) As with any journey the more accurately and vividly you can describe your goal the more likely you are to get there. Saying you want to go to America is not as specific or perhaps helpful as saying you want to go to NYC. Follow-up questions that are also useful are; what does it look like when you get there? How do you feel when you have arrived at/achieved your goal? What do you hear, smell that tells you you have reached your goal? (This is a useful question for creating metrics as well!) At the end of this self questioning and reflecting always ask yourself the classic Kepner - Tregoe question… “What else?”

So we have described our goal, our destination. We know where we want to go. The next question we should ask is, how are we going to get there?

There are two forms of answer to this question, the first is, directions. You need directions to get to your destination. These are the points you hit on the map to get you where you want to be and these are your objectives. By fulfilling your objectives one by one you should (if your objectives are correctly set) reach your goal. As with objectives, if your directions are screwed up, you are unlikely to get to your destination.

The second answer is, in a car. This is your strategy and boiled down to the more detailed short term level your tactics the answer to the question, how do you complete your objectives?

In a journey we use, speed, distance and time to measure how we are doing against our goal of getting to our destination. In business we need measures to understand how we are progressing towards our goals. Completion of objectives is only part of that and not sufficient. Using that alone would be equivalent to only using your speed without time and distance information to see if you were going in the right direction. Not helpful.

With all the above in mind there is another important question you need to answer. That is why? Why is this your goal? This is actually…. your goal. Just a more cognitive version. Makes sense, right? It is also important to have this why answered as you are trying to implement a change here. You will therefore be challenged on pretty much everything. Your why, your persuasive argument must win over support in order for that change to succeed. 

Sorry for the Strategy 101 rather than  the simple Goals vs Objectives. I got a bit carried away.  

Competence vs Capability?

I am sure the answer to this lies in some of my MBA literature but that is in my apartment and I am in the office right now. I find the difference (?) between the two confusing and often misused so I decided to ask the all knowing Google.

Wikianswers says this. I don’t know about you but when I read that I noticed that it says “Capability is the ability to perform actions…” Competence is the ability/skill to perform actions…” Sounds pretty much the same to me so not really all that useful.

There was an answer on Quora, unfortunately I could not be bothered to sign up to look at it so it is not going here. I was also going to look/ask on my previous favourite startup Beepl, however, when I got to their start page to login it said “Beepl experts are totally wicked amazing” if the startup team cannot write good english on their start page what hope does a definition of terms have?

I therefore resorted to the brilliant (that one is for you Kate) Oxford Dictionaries online. Competence is defined as 

[mass noun] the ability to do something successfully or efficiently:

courses to improve the competence of staff



Ahhhhh…. a clear definition with an example of use.

Capability is defined as

noun (plural capabilities)

(often capability of doing/to do something)

  • the power or ability to do something:he had an intuitive capability of bringing the best out in peoplethe company’s capability to increase productivity

So. Are we clear? Perhaps some further interpretation could be added to this?

Based on my understanding and the definitions above I think we can say the following; competence is a specific skill an individual has, it is probably difficult to discuss an organisations competence. For example a competence could be problem solving or project managing or writing press releases. A capability is the ability to utilise competence to achieve goals. For example he used his problem solving competence to come up with a great solution. Or her press releases always read so well. 

That is where I am going anyway, thoughts?

I have already identified where we are going next…. Objectives vs Goals.

Where did it go?

For some reason my post yesterday didn’t load. And that is the lame excuse I have for missing a day. Not very sharp hey!?!

Green smoothies are going down a treat. One every morning this week and feeling good for it. Also been running Tuesday and yesterday as well.

Green smoothie

Green smoothie

Jet lag continues

I was woken up at 2.30am by something falling over off the window sill in my apartment. Sleep non existent since.

So, I got reading my raw food cleanse book by Penni Shelton. For breakfast this morning (after my run) I will have her THE Green Smoothie recipe.
2 big handfuls of spinach
1 cup frozen berries
1 teaspoon of coconut oil (I don’t have this so I will add a little olive oil instead)
1 tablespoon of chia seeds. Soaked.
2 cups of fresh water.

It will be the second outing for the vitamix!

Heat heat heat

Why can’t it be winter here already? I am sick of complaining that it is too hot. Seriously. The heat, the sweat, the bugs it is killing me! Bring me the crisp, clean cold to then bring out my ability to complain about how cold it is.

Training just hasn’t got started, the jetlag hit bad this time. I know why but I will not admit it here as I am a seasoned traveller but a lazy one who likes free wine. there I said it anyway.

I am as mentioned before challenging myself to blog on here once a day for a week. The obvious question is what to talk about. So this being something I wanted to try doing I am going to talk about other things that I want to try doing.

  1. Investing. I really need to do this more and I love reading about it but I haven’t got round to it. I am going to read some more about it and continue to not get round to it

The rest will follow incase I can’t think of anything else to write.

What’s going on Pinterest?

I couldn’t get your ipad app to work for me, kept getting an API error message.

I couldn’t get it working on Safari on my ipad

I fired up the macbook and still could not get logged in properly from chrome

I want to start using more but you aren’t letting me.

Relevant Stakeholders

As anyone who actually bothers to read my blog posts that come too seldom knows I like to be annoyed by things. My i-lands problem blog was entertaining but I never post enough.

I get back to Sweden on Sunday and it is a bit like a new start for me. I have been away for over 6 weeks what with my dad passing away, a bit of disrupted holiday, triathlon training starting in earnest and becoming a to be certified Kepner Tregoe Program Leader. I also have my new job (same company) starting and so there is a lot to absorb during my flight home tomorrow.

Why is any of this important? And why am I bothering to tell everyone who doesn’t read this about it? I have no idea. I will next week make an attempt to blog here everyday and see what it gives me. Should be an interesting exercise if nothing else, routine is not my strong point, in fact it is my weakest.

I as usual digress. Stakeholder Analysis is a very useful tool. I use it fairly often. It allows me to map all the people I need to be aware of in my work and what their relative significance is. Now if I have gone to the effort of identifying those individuals who have a stake in what I am doing, how do I separate them? Or do I need to separate them.

What I do not do is use the awful, lazy, ignorant phrase which is “Relevant Stakeholders”. Calling someone a relevant stakeholder or targeting a group of relevant stakeholders is senseless. Why? Well be taking the time to separate people into stakeholders and everyone else and then referring to relevant stakeholders, I am suggesting to everyone that some stakeholders I identified are not relevant. Right? So…. are they stakeholders? Probably not to a sufficient degree to be included.

Please stop talking about relevance and only address those with relevance in the first place.

The famous smoothie experiment

So today was my first smoothie in a long time. I tried to make it green and as natural as I could. I am on my temporary blender which I got yesterday for 30 quid. It worked ok for the price. I had in the smoothie the following:
1 banana
Quarter of a lemon
Whole orange peeled
2 small carrots
Handful of spinach
Handful of lambs lettuce
Some blueberries
Some raspberries
Some blackberries
Ice
Coconut juice
Teaspoon of peanut butter

The flavour was not fantastic and it could definitely have done with more blending to smooth it out more.

The effects. Feeling very energetic, metabolism feels fast as I am feeling hot and a little sweaty (not nice). I think it is a bit of a toxin purge.

So a good start and something to build on. When I get back from Spain I will try an all green one and add the hemp and spirulina I bought and see how that feels.