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Published on June 27, 2019

5 Solid Strategies to Boost Your Confidence at Work

5 Solid Strategies to Boost Your Confidence at Work

Let me be honest with you: I was never a straight-A student.

Sure I had good grades, but they certainly weren’t anything special. And, because of this, my self-esteem and confidence levels were lower than many of my high-achieving friends.

However, I later discovered one of the keys to abundant confidence.

This discovery came about what I started to become interested in computer coding. As I began to learn how to code and to create programs, something unexpected happened — my confidence started to soar.

What was behind this sudden boost in confidence?

It was the self-reliance I was developing by overcoming issues and bugs with the code I was working on. By learning how to solve difficult coding problems, I learned the little-practiced arts of persistence and creativity; which led to a tangible uplift in my self-confidence.

As you can see from the above, confidence must be found from within. It can never be found from outside.

Working through difficulties is one of the best ways to develop your self-confidence. Each time you overcome a challenge or break through an obstacle — you’ll push your confidence a little higher than it was before.

So next time you find yourself struggling with a deadline at work or facing a financial challenge, be sure to meet them head on. With a positive mindset, you’ll be able to find ways to overcome these and other challenges. And, as I’ve already mentioned, you’ll be rewarded with a tangible boost to your self-confidence. You’ll also open the door to opportunities that can help you reach and exceed your goals.

Of course, as well as overcoming challenges, there are other ways that you can increase your confidence levels.

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1. See Yourself as Equal to Everyone Else

Do you see yourself as equal to your line manager? How about your company’s directors? Do you see yourself as equal to them?

If you allow yourself to feel less than others, you’ll never reach your full potential. You’ll lack the necessary confidence to do the things you want and need to do.

But, it doesn’t have to be this way.

Instead of seeing others as more important than yourself, start seeing them as equals. One easy way to do this is to keep in mind that your manager, your company higher ups and even their leaders — are all on the same team!

You all want your company to succeed, and each person (including you) has their part to play.

Shift your mindset to team-playing, and watch your confidence levels soar.

2. Do the Right Thing

Have you noticed that when you do something morally wrong, you feel bad inside? But, when you do something good (perhaps helping someone out of a difficult situation) — you feel great!

So guess what?

The more bad things you do, the lower your self-esteem and confidence levels will drop. But, the more helpful and useful you are in your life, the higher your self-esteem and confidence will rise.

That’s why I recommend that you should always strive to be kind, compassionate and helpful. This will allow you to benefit the greater good — as well as benefit yourself.

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3. Dress for Success

Imagine turning up to a job interview in T-shirt and jeans, only to find that the other candidates are all smartly attired in suits or dresses. I’m guessing you would feel a little embarrassed, a little out of place, and perhaps… a little deflated!

That’s why it’s always best to dress smarter than you might think is needed. This will always be better than looking underdressed.

But, how about your day-to-day appearance? Do you make an effort in a morning to make sure you look your best?

If you don’t; you should.

When you dress and groom well — you’ll feel good about yourself, too.

And, others will pick up on your confident manner and appearance, and will inevitably treat you with more respect (further boosting your confidence.)

As Friedrich Schiller once wrote:
“Appearance rules the world.”

4. Celebrate All Your Victories, Both Big and Small

You’re 15 years old, and you’ve decided you’d love to become a medical doctor.

To make this goal a reality, you discover that you’ll need to train for at least 11 years before you can gain your medical license.

Yes, 11 years!

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Clearly, this is a HUGE commitment, and will take intense persistence, focus and energy on your part to reach your end goal.

Now, let me ask you a question:

“Would you throw a big party when you finally got your license?”

I’m sure you would. And, you’d definitely deserve it.

But to keep you on track throughout your years of training, I’d suggest celebrating each milestone along the way. For example, throw a few parties… one when you complete your undergraduate degree program, one when you complete medical school, and one when you complete your residency training.

You could also reward yourself for the small but important steps that you take to achieve each of these milestones.

When you celebrate the big and small victories in your life, you’ll keep yourself pumped up, confident and enthusiastic for success.

Try it and see!

5. Always Be Prepared

Do you always expect the unexpected?

From my experience as an entrepreneur, I’ve learned the hard way that even our best and most precise plans can be blown out of the water in an instant!

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For example, I remember many years ago pitching my Lifehack idea to potential investors. At one meeting, I whipped out my laptop to launch my prepared presentation, only to find that the machine was completely unresponsive. My impressive charts, data and business plan were trapped within a dead metal case! Fortunately, I was able to talk at length without notes about my idea, but I have to admit that I was knocked off balance by the laptop issue.

This experience and others taught me the value of always being prepared.

While it’s impossible to know exactly what’s going to happen in the future, you can at least be mentally prepared for things to go wrong, differently or even completely crazy!

So prepare for the worst — but expect the best!

As you can hopefully see from the strategies above, there are several simple ways to begin boosting your confidence right now.

But, it all starts with your mindset.

Shift this into positive gear, and begin seeing obstacles as opportunities for growth. Do this, and your self-confidence levels will hit the roof. You’ll no longer feel downtrodden and left behind. Instead, you’ll have the spark of life that allows you to achieve whatever you set your mind on.

Featured photo credit: Dylan Gillis via unsplash.com

More by this author

Leon Ho

Founder & CEO of Lifehack

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Last Updated on November 5, 2019

5 Learning Management Systems (LMS) for Effective Learning

5 Learning Management Systems (LMS) for Effective Learning

Businesses rely on talent to generate and sell value. Without skilled people to create its products, manage its operations and execute its strategies, a business would inevitably fizzle out of the game and leave better-staffed competitors to take the field.

This is the reason why ambitious companies go great lengths to attract top talent,[1] shelling out millions of dollars in the process and bending traditional work policies just to bring highly skilled but demanding candidates into the fold.

Clearly, the contours of business are changing. But so are the demographics of work.

Millennials have become the dominant generation in the job market in terms of population, and some have already transitioned into leadership roles. Most millennials consider opportunity to learn and grow more important than overall compensation.[2]

Companies also today expect employees to come equipped with razor sharp business acumen.[3] Unfortunately, there is an alarming discrepancy between the actual skills businesses need and those currently possessed by job candidates.

To stay in the game, employers need to continually upgrade their training and skills development strategies to cover the entire employee lifecycle.

What are Learning Management Systems (LMS)?

Learning management systems are software-based solutions for authoring, presenting, consuming, storing, and tracking educational content and training materials. These systems aim to centralize all instructional content (e.g., lessons, training modules, instructional videos, presentation slides, worksheets, online quizzes, ebooks, takeaway notes, etc.) in one place.

LMS enable instructors to design and deliver learning experiences to students, with the added capability of evaluating the effectiveness of the instructional materials and grading the learning progress of students.

On the other side of the equation, learners use LMS to develop skills and acquire new knowledge virtually anytime and anywhere via the different channels and content formats made possible by digital technology.

Over the years, a wide range of features and technologies have been integrated into learning management systems to help enhance the experience of training designers, instructors, and learners. These include cloud and mobile technology, artificial intelligence, responsive design, scheduling, gamification, data analytics, and interoperability with other applications.

5 Best All-Purpose Learning Management Systems

There are dozens of LMS vendors catering to the general market or to specific segments such as K-12 learning, higher education, and corporate training.

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With so many options available, selecting the right LMS solution for your needs can be complicated and costly, especially when you end up adopting a platform that doesn’t exactly match your goals or requirements.

Short of conducting a comprehensive audit of your needs and finalizing a learning roadmap, the safest bet would be to adopt full-featured but affordable LMS solutions.

Based on user reviews, here are the 5 best LMS to help people gain knowledge, build skills, and achieve mastery:

1. Canvas Network

Launched by Instructure as an open source software in 2011, Canvas is an end-to-end cloud-based service originally engineered for the education sector.

Widely adopted for K-12 and Higher Ed learning, Canvas can be repurposed for anything that involves an instructor, a subject matter, and a student.

Used around the world by people of all ages and organizations of all types, Canvas arguably has the largest learning and support community in its class. It works on desktop computers, tablets and mobile phones.

To get a glimpse of the platform’s fresh interfaces, you can visit the Canvas Network, a learning community that provides educational and instructional materials created by colleges, universities, corporate businesses, independent course developers, and other knowledge-sharing entities around the world.

Hosting hundreds of interesting topics from data science to horticulture, the learning network also serves as evidence to the scope, capabilities, and popularity of the Canvas LMS platform.

Canvas is hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure, which enhances the platform’s reliability, speed, scalability, and overall online performance.

Additionally, platform adopters enjoy a low-risk environment since cloud-based solutions require no hard stops for version updates, upgrades, or system migrations.

The Canvas website does not show a price matrix but says the service adopts a simple formula for computing fees: a one-time implementation fee and an annual subscription fee based on total number of users. It also promises free basic services for teachers who want to use the platform.

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In addition to Canvas, Instructure also offers Bridge (an LMS designed for corporate environments), Arc (a video platform for online learning), and Gauge (an assessment management system).

Check out this video if you want to learn more about Canvas Network:

2. Google Classroom

This free service from Google aims to improve the teaching and learning process using cloud technology, web apps, workflow simplification, and seamless communication between students and instructors.

Using Classroom, educators can easily create and schedule classes, distribute assignments, send feedback, and grade quizzes all in one place. By streamlining processes, Classroom helps teachers save time and organize classes more effectively. Both students and teachers can also work using any device anytime and anywhere.

Classroom works perfectly with other Google tools, having been launched initially as part of Google’s G Suite for Education. This LMS solution taps Google Drive for content storage and distribution, as well as Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for the creation and sharing of instructional materials. Meanwhile it integrates Google Calendar for scheduling and Gmail for communication.

With G Suite, other communication channels such as chat messaging, video conferencing, and a dedicated website are enabled.

Easy to set up and manage, Google Classroom is free to use. One of my very first courses was actually hosted on Google Classroom.

Going beyond the classroom environment, Google offers G Suite Enterprise for Education for large institutions. This suite provides enhanced search and analytics capabilities as well as advanced tools for enterprise communications.

3. Moodle (Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment)

If budget and capability equally top your list of LMS adoption criteria, then Moodle might just fit the bill. Which is to say there’s none (i.e., bill).

Moodle is a free and open-source learning solution for distance education, workplace training, flipped classrooms, and other pedagogical environments.

It is also a full-featured LMS supported by a robust community and a thriving developer ecosystem. Not surprisingly, Moodle is used in more than 15 million courses by more than 130 million users in 230+ countries.

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Among other things, Moodle enables administrators and educators to create a dynamic and dedicated website to host organic, easily accessible, and highly customizable courses that can be experienced on desktops and mobile devices anytime and anywhere.

Moodle provides a personalized and intuitive dashboard as well as a host of collaboration tools for content designers, teachers, and learners. A universal calendar, an efficient file management system, an automatic notification system, multimedia integration, and a progress tracking tool all come with the package.

Check out this video if you want to learn more about Moodle:

4. Absorb

This platform recently bagged PC Magazine’s Editors’ Choice Award for Best LMS.

Co-designed and built by former course authors, Absorb takes learning experience to the next level. This turnkey LMS solution is responsive, full-featured, and highly customizable for maximum impact.

Course developers can orchestrate a wide range of experiences depending on audience or learning situation. In addition to surveys, polls, and e-commerce integration, Absorb supports formal online learning and certifications standards such as AICC, SCORM, and Tin Can.

The user interface can also be modified to match the learner’s location, group, or department, allowing for a different look and feel for customers, channel partners, management trainees, and newly hired employees.

Absorb supports all personal computing devices from desktops to mobile phones. There are also native or hybrid apps for iOS and Android.

The only possible drawback to the platform’s powerful feature set is its pricing. The service reportedly implements a flat, one-time setup fee depending on your business and training requirements. According to the site, any plan comes with a dedicated success team for your account.

Although small companies are welcome to try, midsize to enterprise-scale organizations are probably the best segment to readily adopt this LMS solution.

Take a look at some examples of Absorb in this video:

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5. Watershed Collaborative

Created by a group of educators, this nonprofit rethinks the priorities of an LMS, asserting that too many systems miss the most essential elements of what makes learning stick. They promise a better user experience – emphasizing Learning before Management and System.

Watershed aims to support an inquiry-based learning experience through an integrated mix of online and in-person learning strategies and interactions designed expressly for teams – including collaboration, reflection, and dialogue.

While Watershed was founded initially to serve the K-12 education market, the company has since expanded its scope to cater to all types of teachers and learners with its video-rich, state-of-the-art platform.

If you’re a mission-driven educator, content creator, institution, or business, this LMS may be the one for you.

Watershed specializes in assisting you with the instructional design of courses and provides content production services to ensure top-quality video assets with lasting value. Their LMS makes it easy for course creators to continuously update and tailor content to support small and large groups, while ensuring the technology and instructional strategy supports communities of learners.

Pricing varies based on products and services, but revenues support the nonprofit’s ability to make its platform and courses available at little or no cost for high-need educators and educational settings.

Honorable Mentions

There are dozens of LMS vendors in this growing market and the brands included in foregoing list are by no means the only viable options for companies or learning institutions looking to upgrade their learning infrastructure.

Many other excellent services are worth checking out. These include:

  1. Docebo is an LMS designed for hyper-engaging students, employees, customers, and other learners. The system helps organizations identify and resolve competency gaps with strategic learning interventions.
  2. Cornerstone OnDemand is a talent, training, and performance management solution offered as an SaaS (Software-as-a-Service). This service enables learners to create personalized playlists of instructional content.
  3. Lessonly is an LMS solution that makes it easier to recall and reinforce whatever skills or knowledge you have learned through quizzes, coaching, and constant practice.
  4. Skillsoft is an online training and corporate learning platform developed by a two-decade old and billion-dollar company with the same name.
  5. D2L BrightSpace is a learning management system that has all the basics for delivering excellent, rich-media experiences for classroom or workplace training.

Conclusion

There are many ways to learn but some are more effective and meaningful than others. Whether you are a teacher looking to enhance classroom learning or an HR manager creating a long-term talent development plan for employees, the key to impactful learning is to understand and bridge the needs of learners, the goals of your institution, and the actual capabilities of the learning tools you are considering.

Note that using multiple LMS platforms is possible although not recommended. On the other hand, adopting other learning solutions beyond LMS (such as podcasts, mentoring, and onsite in-person workshops) may significantly improve learning outcomes. Always go for products and plugins that seamlessly integrate into your core LMS tool.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Reference

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