CEO Blog

Category Archives: Interest

All blog posts by Kevin Dee, Chairman at Eagle — Canada’s premier staffing agency, related to Kevin’s general interests.

Inspiration That Works For Me

Poster saying Opportuniy is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work"Quotes and sayings can be a little “hokey” for some people, but I like them. I like it when I find new phrases that resonate, I like it when I come across a quote that makes me smile and I even like it when I re-discover older sayings that still have meaning for me.

I have a tattoo on my arm that says, Carpe Diem.  I got it just before a 2011 charity boxing match that I participated in.  It was a big commitment to do the training and get in that ring.  I was about the same age at which my dad had died of a heart attack.  I was doing something that not too many people do.  Seizing the day, seemed like a good sentiment, and one of the ways that I live my life.

I have a card over my desk at work.  It is a birthday card my mom sent me quite a few years ago, with a quote from James Dean. You will have heard it many times before, “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die today.” That is how I try to live my life.  There is a quote from the movie Braveheart with a similar sentiment, “Every man dies.  Not every man truly lives.” I love it!

When asked about any personal success I might have enjoyed in my career I will often cite Time Management as an area that has been huge for me.  To be able to maximize time, to be as productive as possible it takes a discipline and constantly finding new ways to manage time.  Zig Ziglar said, “Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem.  We all have twenty four hours a day”.   A similar quote from H Jackson Brown says, “Don’t say you don’t have enough time.  You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller,  Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson and Albert Einstein”.  Pretty powerful statement, IF you want to really hear it.

There are many others that have influenced me, affected me, supported my own ideas and helped me to achieve some success thus far in my life.

“Happiness is an attitude.  We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong.  The amount of work is the same.”  Francesca Reigler

“I would rather regret the things I have done, than the things I haven’t done.”  Lucille Ball

“The price of success is hard work, dedication to the job at hand and a determination that whether we win or lose, we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand.”  Vince Lombardi.

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”  Martin Luther King.

I have always taken pride in my work ethic, believing, like Thomas Jefferson that “Some people dream of success, while others wake up and work hard at it.”

To some people these quotes are just words that may or may not resonate.  To me they are much more than that, they inspire me, remind me of how I got here and what it will take to achieve those next goals.

As a motorbike rider and somebody who tries to squeeze as much as possible into life I particularly like this quote, which has not been attributed to any one person.  “Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely, in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ‘What a ride!’’’

I have many more that I could post but I will finish with one of my own … Walk Fast and Smile!  The walk fast meaning attack life ‘with purpose’, and the smile meaning enjoy life and let everyone around you know it!

What keeps you grounded?

What motivates you?

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Want to know where Canada’s hot jobs are?   Visit the Eagle Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?


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The Generosity of People

Quote about generosityIt can be all too easy to become a little cynical about people.  The media focuses on the negative, we read about crime and war, about the newsworthy items that paint people in a negative light.

The reality is that the world is filled with wonderful human beings who are continually demonstrating their generosity.  They just don’t get much press!

What these people know is that it feels good to give!

They benefit when they share their good fortune with others.

“There is no exercise better for the heart than reaching down and lifting people up.”  John Holmes

It is not an intuitive thing … often people think that they should hold onto what they have. But there is no joy in that!

I meet business leaders, who are already incredibly busy people, who give freely of their time to help others and to be involved in good causes.

I know young people, who get a bad rap for being selfish and yet they get involved in their communities, help out with charities and give some of their hard earned cash to support those less fortunate than others.

Here in my company as one very small example, we have an employee payroll deduction program to support the United Way and we enjoy close to 100% participation in that program year after year.

“If you haven’t any charity in your heart, you have the worst kind of heart trouble.” Bob Hope

There are so many deserving causes in our communities, ranging from the huge campaigns against cancer and heart disease, through very large institutions like the United Way, right down to the small shelters for those in need of refuge.

If ever I feel a little jaded about people I only have to think for a few minutes about the people I know, and the many that I don’t know, who give so much to help others. Not because it is their job, not because they are forced to do it, but because they want to give something back.

“You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.”  John Bunyan

There are a ton of good people in the world … seek them out, join them, make a difference and understand what it means for you.

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Want to know where Canada’s hot jobs are?   Visit the Eagle Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
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Life Balance

Happiness quote by CarnegieThe subject of work/life balance is a common topic and like most people I have my opinions. I have formed mine over 40 years in the workforce, starting out as a Junior Naval Aircraft Mechanic 2nd class in the Royal Navy (I don’t think you can start any lower than that!). For the last 21 years I have owned and operated my own business.

Here are some of my thoughts on life balance … which is my preferred description, as opposed to work/life balance.

“Don’t say you don’t have enough time.  You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson and Albert Einstein.”  H. Jackson Brown.

1. I believe that everything we are, and everything we do is connected … so when something affects one part of your life it will affect your whole life, unless you consciously act to stop that.
2. You will very likely meet many of the most important people in your life through work.
3. If you can achieve success at work it will make you feel better about yourself … which positively affects all aspects of your life.
4. If you are struggling in one aspect of your life, at work OR at home, it has the capacity to negatively impact the other parts of your life.
5. Having allowed in #4 that tough times at home can impact work etc., the reverse is also true. You can use a great work environment or a great home environment to help you “get through” tough periods in the other parts of your life.
6. Confidence built on success at work shows through at home.
7. Happiness at home (or at work) comes through in the other parts of your life.
8. If you are a “lazy person” at home it is very likely you will display the same tendencies at work.
9. You will be at your most content when all parts of your life are progressing positively.
10.  Success is best enjoyed when it is earned … and success should come in all aspects of your life, your career, your relationships, your hobbies, your health and your general attitude about life.
11.  Happiness is a choice, you are in full control of your own happiness.
12.   Success is what you want it to be.  It does not need to be about position or money, it does need to be about achievement and the result of effort.
13.  Life is not meant to be easy, it can however be very rewarding … make the effort and earn the rewards.
14.  While you can rest along the way, you can never stop the effort because your world is ever changing.
15.  There are always compromises in life, but the most successful people find a way to make things work.

If you want to achieve your potential in life then I believe you should have a “life plan”, not a “work/life plan”.

  • Work on your career.
  • Work on your relationships.
  • Work on your hobbies.
  • Work on your health.
  • Work on your future … as one thing, recognising that work and home life are intertwined.

“A true balance between work and life comes with knowing that your life activities are integrated, not separated.”  Michael Thomas Sunnarborg

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Find Canada’s top hot jobs, updated in real-time!  Visit Eagle’s Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
________________________________________________________________


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10 Ways to Make It A “Feel Good” Day

Robert Ingersoll quote about givingWe live our lives every day dealing with the normal pressures of life. We build routines and focus on the things we need to do, and some of the things we would like to do. Every now and again it is a good idea to focus on others, to give, with no expectation of getting anything back. I call that type of day a “feel good” day, because invariably it feels good to do something for others. Which begs the question … how come we don’t do it more often?

There are many things that we can do to create a “feel good” day?

Here are 10 ideas for you … and they actually work on any day, so you could actually have “feel god” days as often as you like!

1. Buy coffee for the person in line behind you at the coffee shop … pay it forward.  It costs very little and the result WILL give someone pleasant surprise.

2. Send a hand written note to three people in your life that you know will like it … friends, relatives, colleagues.  How often do you get mail these days?  Think about how you feel when there is something other than bills or junk in your mail!

3. Buy a sandwich for a homeless person.  Don’t necessarily give them money, but you could buy them a meal … it doesn’t have to cost much.

4. Bring cup cakes (donuts, chocolates, fruit … whatever works best) to the office.  You like it when someone else does it … so just do it!

Quote from Winston Churchill about value of giving5. Praise someone who could do with a “lift”.  We don’t know what is going on in other people’s lives, but a compliment or a kind word out of the blue can certainly be a mood booster for most people!

6. Smile … make it a “no frown” day!  Smiles are contagious!

7. Share a joke with your friends … make it appropriate to the most conservative of those friends.  I think most of us like the occasional (don’t overdo it)  levity to break up the work day.

8. Call your mom … (and/or dad, sister, brother)!  Enough said!

9. Do a good deed for a stranger … drive a neighbor somewhere, pick up groceries for an elderly person etc.

10. Do something for a charity (not for profit) … make a donation, volunteer some time, get involved!  Our society relies on volunteers … do something to help out.

If doing one, some, or all of these things made you feel good about yourself then resolve to do them more often!

It seems counter-intuitive to some people, but take it from me: giving is one of the best things we can for ourselves!

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Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Gain a competitive edge!  Join Eagle’s Executive Consulting Network!
Find Canada’s top hot jobs, updated in real-time!  Visit Eagle’s Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
________________________________________________________________


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Spring Resolutions!

Change quote by Jim RohnMany people make New Year Resolutions and most of those people fail to meet their goals.  If you want an indicator of that just visit any gym early in the New Year and again a couple of months later!

Spring is a great time to re-commit to some small changes in your life … call it your Spring Resolutions!

It is a much better time of year to make resolutions because everything feels better in the Spring!  The flowers start to appear, the Winter coats go into storage, you get to go outside without a coat, the sun feel good and there is a general uplift in people’s mood.

Here are some ideas for making resolutions stick!

  1. They need to be meaningful, or they will not be important enough for you to effect change.
  2. They need to be achievable, or you will lose interest or discipline or patience.
  3. They need to be top of mind … so you must find a way to build them into your routine.  Whether through reminders, or personal coaches or just sticky notes on your monitor.
  4. They should be reachable in a reasonable amount of time.  If it is going to take a year to reach your goal then you will likely give up.  Just make it into smaller goals achievable in shorter times.

Here are some examples that could change your life.

If You change nothing, nothing will change!1.  Career Goal.  You want a promotion at some point, or a career change, or even a first job.

  • I will take course “Z” in the Fall and complete it by the New Year.
  • I will send 2 targeted letters (emails) a day, customized to the specific company.
  • I will improve my personal brand by upgrading my work wardrobe, networking monthly with senior people and will work an extra 15 minutes a day to get noticed.

2.  Health Goals.  You want to get back into “college shape”, but you put on 50 pounds since then!

  • I will write down everything I eat in a log, and reduce the amount by 10%.
  • I will walk more every day … get off the bus/subway 2 stops early; walk up stairs rather than take elevator; walk for 30 minutes at lunch etc.
  • When I am ready I will set my next goals … but no later than 60 days from now.

3.  Hobbies Goal.  You might want a new hobby or have a desire to do more with an existing one.

  • I will join a group of like-minded people … a book club, a model train club, a biking club etc.
  • I will read one book a month on this subject for the next 3 months.
  • I will find one friend who will come with me … to dance lessons, choir practice etc.

All of these goals are small steps towards enriching your life … OR you could just keep doing what you do!  Like most things in life, it is a choice we all have to make … I believe it is far better to make a conscious choice and not just let life happen to you!

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Want to know where Canada’s hot jobs are?   Visit the Eagle Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
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Your Life Planning Book – An Idea

Kevin's Idea BookSome time ago I received a rather nice notebook as a Christmas present.  It is a hardback book and inserted amongst the note pages are photographs of my family.  It was a nice gift that I didn’t want to waste, so I pondered about how I might use it.

I decided to use the book as an “Ideas Book” … a book that is for me personally, and captures ideas for my life.

I have numerous sections in the book …

There is a section on health and fitness, that has some goals (which I can modify with time).  This section contains some ideas about health and fitness related activities and goals that I might be interested in over time.

I have a section for travel … I add places of interest over time and it helps me to understand where are places that truly interest me that should be on my bucket list, and where are other places that might be of interest.

I have section about work … what I enjoy, what intrigues me, what strengths I think I have and what I am not so good at!  This helps me to think about the future and what I might enjoy doing with my time after Eagle.  It also helps me to understand where I might need help in my current role.

I have section devoted to writing.  This is something I enjoy so perhaps I might write a book or two.  This section contains some book ideas, along with some details that I add from time to time … plots for novels etc.

I have a section for hobbies … things I do now, and things I might do in the future.

The whole idea of the book was to capture ideas as they came to me and to have one resource that might help me to plan my life.  It has been an interesting exercise, and one that I highly recommend.  It is like capturing your goals in one place, adding some prospective goals over time and having all of the relevant data to determine what is important to YOU … in one place.

Of course it doesn’t need to be on paper, it can be digital … but I enjoy the book, leafing through it, pondering the entries and flipping back and forth.  I find it helps my creative thinking.  I also like the fact that I can pick it up any time, and do some thinking about the various topics in it.

The book has become much more than an “ideas book” … it is rapidly becoming the blueprint for my life.

Try it … it has helped me to clarify some of my thinking, it might just work for you too!

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Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Want to know where Canada’s hot jobs are?   Visit the Eagle Job Centre!
Gain a competitive edge!  Join Eagle’s Executive Consulting Network!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
—————————————————————————————————————————————–


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What Makes You Smile?

Think about what makes you smile.

It is a GREAT way to focus your attention on all that is good in your life.

By focusing on the good, (a) the other stuff appears much less important, (b) it takes the sting out of the tough stuff and (c) it reminds you to strive for the good!

Me and my momI love my life and have so much that makes me smile …

  • I get enjoyment from my fitness routines, relishing a good workout.
  • I love it when my team wins … any of my teams.
  • I get a smile snowshoeing on Lake Simcoe, walking on the beach in Florida, taking the dog for a walk on a crisp Winter day (not too cold) or a nice Summer day.
  • I get pleasure from vacations that involve sunshine and motorcycles (see picture).Kevin on his motorbike
  • I get a smile from giving the homeless guy $5 for his Outreach newspaper.
  • I smile when I think about the life we have built over the last thirty years.
  • I smile when I get to relax with a sudoku on a Saturday morning.
  • I smile when I get to enjoy good company and a nice meal in a good restaurant.
  • I smile when I talk to my mum … see the picture!

I smile for all sorts of reasons!

In fact one of my favorite sayings is “Walk Fast and Smile“!

What makes YOU smile?

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Want to know where Canada’s hot jobs are?   Visit the Eagle Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
—————————————————————————————————————————————–


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Go Ahead Make SOMEONE’s Day … 10 Ideas!

generosityHow do you feel when you get pleasantly surprised?

Most likely you have a busy life, juggle priorities, work hard and have commitments that fill your days.

You never have time to sit back and “smell the roses” or to focus on the good things in your life.

Here is the thing … when something unexpected happens that is a feel good thing, it forces you to actually enjoy ithowever briefly.

Given that it has that effect on you, why not do it for someone else?

Why not do it for a few people?

It doesn’t need to be a big thing.

It should be spontaneous and unexpected … it should be something the person will enjoy.

It might just result in a “pay it forward” type wave of “feel good” actions that makes our world a better place.

Here are some ideas …

Make people feel good as your legacy1.  Write a (hand written) card to a friend just telling them you were thinking of them, that you value their friendship and you wanted to tell that just that!

2.  Send someone a digital card … very easy to do, with a nice message.

3.  Send someone a small gift.

4.  Send your spouse a gift at work.

5.  Send you parents a picture (maybe in a frame) that you know they would enjoy … attach a small note.

6.  Give someone a coffee card.

7.  Buy coffee for  the person behind you in the coffee shop.

8.  Drop $5 with a homeless person who is selling the newspapers that support them.

9.  Pay a visit to a relative that you rarely see.

10.  Shovel the snow for your neighbour.

Go ahead, make SOMEONE’s day!

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Want to know where Canada’s hot jobs are?   Visit the Eagle Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
—————————————————————————————————————————————–


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Your Mission (should you accept it) is to Get People Smiling!

smile quote by Phyllis DillerDecember is a tough month!

It is cold outside!

We are all expected to get our work done even though we have less work days to do it!

Many of us are preparing for the holidays, which can get a little stressful.

So … make it your mission to get as many smiles as possible this December.

Smiles are contagious … so the best place to start is by smiling yourself.

Be nice to people.

Give a few dollars to the people who need it.

Hold the door open for strangers.

Be thoughtful and find ways to get people smiling.

If you can do it then YOU will be the biggest beneficiary, because it will make you feel good!

________________________________________________________________
Kevin Dee is CEO of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Gain a competitive edge!  Join Eagle’s Executive Consulting Network!
Find Canada’s top hot jobs, updated in real-time!  Visit Eagle’s Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
________________________________________________________________


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Staying in Touch With Your Network

People will appreciate efforts to stay in touchYou work hard to make friends … but it is easy to lose touch with them.

You move away from your childhood home and lose touch with many or all of your school friends.

You move away from the city where you went to college or university and again you lose touch with people.

You get extra busy with life, raising a family, building a career … and you neglect some of your friends.

It seems to happen to most of us in varying degrees.

In business you work hard to establish business relationships, but in exactly the same way as with personal contacts it can be very easy to lose touch with those people.

You move jobs, move geographies, get wrapped up in big projects and before you know it years have passed since you last talked to many of your contacts.

Maintaining relationships with people takes effort, but that effort is worth it if you can retain those relationships over the long haul.

Here are some ideas for keeping in touch with your network:

1.  Make lists … a good time management habit!  You might have several lists:

  • the close friends list;
  • the personal acquaintances list;
  • the current clients list;
  • the ex-clients list;
  • the family list.

Two boyhood friends plotting togetherIf you are really organised you might use a CRM like tool, or a contact manager.

2.  Decide your various contact strategies for these lists.

  • Holiday cards
  • Birthday cards
  • Hand written notes
  • Events.
  • Dinners, lunches, breakfasts or coffees.
  • Information specific to them based on hobbies, their career, other interests or your joint history.
  • Social networks on which to connect (Facebook, LinkedIN etc)

3.  Set aside time regularly to make sure you execute on your plan.

4.  Use your calendar to make sure you track important dates.

5.  Plug time into your schedule, in your calendar, to spend with the important people in your life.

As you get busier it is easy to let things slip, and relationships can “go stale” or worse pretty quickly!

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Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
Find Canada’s top hot jobs, updated in real-time!  Visit Eagle’s Job Centre!
Have you tried Eagle’s (very cost effective) VirtualRecruiter service?
________________________________________________________________


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