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About Sorin Dumitrascu
Sorin developed and delivered on management, project management, computer literacy, human resources, career development, soft skills for employees and even corrections incidents management.
Currently working as a prison service consultant, he is a certified trainer and project manager, holding a master degree in International Relations and Policy Making and a bachelor degree in Law and Public Administration.
Sorin coordinated during the last 15 years projects in the areas of rule of law, regional development and human resources.
He has more than 15 years of middle/senior managerial experience within the civil service (justice, corrections, internal affairs, training), private sector (project management, consultancy, training) and NGO (industrial relations, rural development).
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Books By Sorin Dumitrascu
Do you wonder if there is another professional business style that might be right for you? The answer may well be yes. Many people find that an assertive style meets their professional needs. Others around you appreciate this solid, constructive approach. And you can feel in control using this style to deal with co-workers or even manage or supervise employees. The assertive style can be your win-win style.
Try the role of an assertive business professional. It can be the right style for you. You can find yourself acting proactively and dealing with others responsibly. What a great feeling. The good news is that you don't have to achieve this role by yourself. This course will give you tools to help. You will learn about: becoming an assertive professional, proactive listening strategies, constructive feedback strategies.
Do you sometimes feel trapped in the way you commonly act at work? Or even angry at others who act as though you're a nonentity or someone to be avoided?
How would you like to take the lead in developing the assertive professional style you've dreamed of having, one that lets you avoid traps and anger? It's up to you to decide when you want to take charge of your life.
You've reached the right conclusion when you decide that you're the best person to take the lead in developing your professional style. You can blossom as an individual when your actions form the foundation for an assertive style that you can build on and strengthen.
Your self-confidence will increase as you use the course's methods and guidelines to change your professional style to the style you've dreamed of having.
If you have an optimistic attitude, your efforts to develop your style can be both personally and professionally rewarding. The material covered in this course will give you the tools to help yourself. The three lessons are: Developing Your Assertive Style, Self-development Strategies, and Assertive Interactions.
When you're preparing for a difficult conversation, don't avoid the situation. Make sure your goal for the conversation is clear, realistic, and relevant. And make sure to choose an appropriate time and place to have the conversation.
There are four steps to changing a negative internal monologue to a positive internal monologue. Step one is to be aware of your negative inner voice. Step two is to consider both positive and negative possible outcomes of having the conversation. Step three is to focus on the goal of the conversation. And step four is to develop a positive internal monologue by reframing negative thoughts in a positive way.
Preparing for a difficult conversation involves analyzing the practical and emotional levels of the conversation, and then planning your approach.
Guidelines for analyzing the practical level are to consider the other person's perspective, consider your own viewpoint, make sure you understand the situation, make sure you don't assign blame, admit your mistakes, and reverse roles to consider the other side of things.
Analyzing the emotional level involves managing both your emotions and the other person's emotions. Planning the conversation involves identifying your goal, outlining the structure of the conversation, and rehearsing the conversation.
When you're preparing for a difficult conversation, it's imperative to examine your own attitude toward the conversation. Your mind-set is the logical thinking that determines how you interpret and respond to communication. The right mind-set will make it easier to communicate effectively and reach the goal of your conversation. The four qualities of an appropriate mind-set are being open-minded, collaborative, empathic, and engaged.
Having a difficult conversation, and making it progress well, requires following a clear structure. It should also involve adopting an appropriate communication style to suit the individual and the context.
There are five steps to creating progress in a difficult conversation. First, open with an agenda. Second, invite dialogue. Third, share views and perspectives to learn from each other. Fourth, look for a mutual understanding, and finally, design an action plan.
Your communication style throughout the conversation is crucial to a positive outcome. It's important that you're clear and direct, and focus on the facts. You need to be honest and fair to your colleague. Also, be assertive but tactful, and listen effectively.
Once a difficult conversation is opened well, the second step is inviting dialogue. This involves connecting with the other person by using strength-focused communication.
Strength-focused communication can keep others engaged. This involves speaking to a person's strengths, acknowledging feelings, and understanding the benefits of another approach.
Companies held high in customers' esteem will typically be successful. Historically, these include businesses focused on increasing efficiency in production, cost reduction, and other internal processes. However, one of the most effective ways to leave customers satisfied is to let their needs and requirements be the driving force behind business process improvements.
Customer-driven process improvement is an approach where customer feedback is an opportunity for organizations to analyze their operations and processes, and find ways to improve customer satisfaction. This book outlines a six-stage framework for the identification and implementation of customer driven process improvement opportunities.
The framework includes learning how to determine customer needs and translating these needs into process requirements. It also discusses how to map and measure current processes, analyze process problems, and identify improvement ideas and solutions. Finally, it includes instruction on how to successfully implement and sustain process improvements.
A business is as unique as the individual processes that it uses. This book offers a foundation for successful customer-driven process improvement. It introduces the ideas and tools for identifying your customers' needs, and incorporating these needs into your processes. Doing this will give you the competitive edge that's important to thrive in contemporary marketplaces.
If your organization decides to take a team approach, it's crucial for you, the team leader, to make the effort to set the stage for success during the Forming phase of team development. The main purpose of this course is to show you how to bring together a group of individuals and turn that group into a true team.
But what exactly is a true team? And how does it differ from a regular work group? Well, in a traditional work group, members don't work toward a common purpose. Each person is accountable only to himself and doesn't depend on the rest of the group.
Now compare this to a team. A true team is typically comprised of a small number of individuals whose skills complement each other. A team works toward the same purpose and goals – this is its reason for being. And members of an effective team are open and honest. They feel like they can count on each other.
Now that you know what a team is, consider some of the benefits of taking a team approach: you'll have group buy-in, with the result being more motivation and better performance, you'll be able to pool expertise and resources, and you'll find that the team has better ideas and problem-solving abilities than an isolated employee.
Leading a team is like being the captain of a ship. You'll have to ride the calms and storms, but with the support of your crew, you'll reach your final destination. This course will focus on the formation phase of team development, and will provide you with strategies to ensure your team succeeds in spite of the storms you encounter.
As team leader, one of the most important jobs you will perform is building the foundation for an effective, high performance team.
Ultimately, it's the team leader who's responsible for team success. The sooner you can get your team working as a united force, the better its chances of success. As team leader, you need to concentrate on building a productive and effective team early in the team-building stage.
Team leaders who fail to put the work in up front to build a strong, productive team run the risk of developing a team hampered by a lack of direction, internal conflict, and misassigned team roles. All of which can result in the team failing to achieve its objectives.
Three areas are particularly important when building an effective team.
It's important to establish team goals in the early stages of team building to set the team's direction. The team leader's job is to provide the leadership necessary to establish team goals. However, this is a team activity and must involve all team members.
Assigning the right people to the right roles is important because, when done correctly, the effectiveness of the team increases. Team leaders are responsible for assigning roles, and they must assign the right people to the right roles based on ability. This helps ensure the team achieves its objectives or goals.
Establishing effective guidelines for the conduct of the team is important because it helps the team work together. Team leaders have to take a proactive role in working with the team to define guidelines for conduct so that everyone is certain about how to behave, communicate, and work together.
The team leader plays the key role in building a successful team.
To make the dismissal process run smoother, there are four steps you can take when considering whether to dismiss an employee. The first is to ensure the employee knows the rules. The second is to warn the employee of inappropriate performance or behavior, and plan corrective actions. The third is to assess the employee's improvement after a given time frame and then make a final decision. The fourth is to prepare a clear and concise dismissal letter, if necessary.
In this course, you'll learn more about the appropriate steps to take prior to dismissing an employee. This includes using documentation to facilitate awareness and following a progressive disciplinary procedure. You'll also find out how to determine if a dismissal is warranted based on the offense, an assessment of the employee, and the organizational impact.
At some point in their careers, most managers will have to undertake the unpleasant task of dismissing an employee. Although this can make for an uncomfortable conversation, both the manager and the employee can learn and grow from the experience if it's handled correctly.
If you feel unsure about how to handle dismissals there are guidelines you can follow that will increase your confidence and make for a smoother experience. Handling dismissals effectively means preserving the dignity of the employee and minimizing the impact on the team and the organization.
You, as a manager, can follow three steps to managing dismissals effectively. This course outlines the steps involved in preparing for dismissals; guidelines for conducting a dismissal interview, such as dealing with employee reactions; and what to consider when following up on the dismissal after the meeting.
Possibly you don't delegate often because you simply don't know where to begin or how to do it effectively. Regardless of your own experience with delegating, chances are if you don't delegate, you have way too much on your plate.
When you insist on doing everything yourself, as many managers tend to do, you're not devoting your full attention to your true responsibilities as a manager – coaching, motivating, planning, and monitoring.
This course will provide you with the information and tools you need to begin delegating effectively. In it, you'll learn several key aspects of delegating:
¥ exactly what delegation involves and how it can benefit you, your employees, and
¥ the organization the qualities that all good delegators have in common, and
¥ the four different delegation styles.
Whether you've never delegated before or are a seasoned delegator, this course will show you how to use delegation to empower your employees to take responsibility for tasks. Instead of worrying that the job won't be done right, you'll be confident that your employees know just what to do. And even more importantly, you'll no longer waste time doing tasks that could be better done by someone else. You'll be able to get back to doing your real job – managing.
Do you remember when you first started working in business? You probably got that job because you had special abilities or skills your employer found valuable. Now think about your first good performance review or promotion. It's likely you were praised or rewarded because you were detail-oriented, took responsibility for completing tasks yourself, and didn't try to pass your work on to other people. Well, now you're a manager and it's time to let go of all that.
It's often a little shocking for people to realize that the very qualities that made them good employees may hold them back as managers. After all, it was those traits that allowed them to become managers in the first place. But management involves a special skill – delegation. Delegating involves letting go of doing everything yourself, and learning to get things done through other people.
There are four steps in the task delegation process. First, choose which task to delegate. Then select the person to perform the task. Next, assign the task to the person. And finally, monitor the person's performance and give feedback.
In this course, you'll learn how to implement the four steps of task delegation to delegate work effectively. You'll discover how to determine which tasks should or shouldn't be delegated, and how to choose the right people for those tasks. You'll discover the best way to assign tasks so your employees understand and accept their new responsibilities. You'll also learn how to monitor your employees, and give feedback that will help them be successful at their delegated tasks.
It seems like delegating work should be simple – just ask someone to do it, and that's one less thing for you to worry about. But even when you've done your best to match the right task with the right person, problems can arise. Delegation is a learning process – for you and for your team.
When we think about public speaking, we usually think of formal occasions like corporate updates and conferences. But public speaking actually refers to every time you talk to a group of people, whether they're friends, clients, colleagues, or customers. Speaking in public is the most basic, direct, and powerful way you can communicate.
Learning how to become an effective public speaker can help you succeed in your career.
Public speaking skills benefit both the speaker and the listener. Audiences learn from you and are entertained when you effectively communicate your ideas.
And you, as the speaker, benefit by leaving a lasting impression of competence and confidence in your chosen field.
This course can help you to prepare effective public speeches. It sets out the preparations you should make before getting up to talk to a group - including choosing your topic and researching it properly as well as writing and practicing your speech. Making these preparations can help you become an effective public speaker.
This course begins by detailing how to select an effective topic for your speech - one that you feel comfortable talking about, fulfills your objectives, and resonates with your audience.
Next, it outlines how to effectively research your topic and prepare for making your speech. Thorough research is the foundation of an effective speech. Also, making preparations minimizes the possibility of mishaps during your speech.
Finally, this course sets out how to write and practice your speech. Structuring your speech correctly and practicing it beforehand contribute toward a successful public speaking experience.
Can you think of a time, with your family or friends, when you were telling a story and every eye was on you? When you were relaxed and the words came easily? Don't you wish it was that easy every time you had a formal public speaking engagement? Most people are capable of communicating effectively in an informal situation. But when a formal speech is required, the same people often feel overwhelmed.
For most people, public speaking doesn't come naturally. It takes practice and preparation to get your delivery just perfect. In this course you'll learn techniques to increase your confidence and your public speaking skills.
You'll begin by learning the basics of good speech delivery - how to start strong by encouraging your confidence, making a good first impression, and building rapport with your audience. You'll also learn how to hold the attention of the audience and finish strong.
You'll learn how to recognize some of the common challenges of public speaking, such as an audience losing focus, being uncooperative, asking difficult questions, or heckling. And you'll learn techniques to deal with each challenge effectively.
This course will also teach you techniques to overcome your public speaking anxiety. You'll learn how to adequately prepare leading up to your speech, and how important it is to relax before you speak.
You'll learn how to get acquainted with your location and listeners and how to focus on your key points when you get nervous. Finally, you'll learn how practicing public speaking will lead to greater confidence.
The last section of this course will give you a chance to practice all you've learned and simulate delivering a speech with confidence.
You'll practice conquering your anxiety, handling difficult questions, dealing with hecklers, and regaining the focus of an audience that's fading.
The key to both successful interviewing and hiring is effective screening. This involves filtering resumes to find job candidates who are best suited for the position.
What do you think happens if you don't screen applicants properly? You'll probably ignore some credible candidates who deserve an interview.
You'll also waste time on interviewing unsuitable candidates, who aren't qualified for the position you need to fill.
This book will help you avoid these pitfalls, ensuring that you identify the best possible applicants to include in the interviewing process.
A good job description sets out the expectations for the job and for the candidate you'll ultimately hire.
Before you can write a good job description, you need to perform a job analysis. You examine what the job entails – for example, what skills and qualifications the person in this role needs and what tasks the new employee needs to perform to succeed in the role.
From this analysis, you create the job description, which accurately identifies all the requirements a successful candidate must meet.
An incomplete or inaccurate job description can be disastrous. For example, say you need to hire a graphic designer for your advertising agency. The job requires someone with experience in using a specific desktop publishing software product. If you fail to include this in the job description, you may hire someone unsuitable and end up having to spend time and money on training this person.
Once you've created an accurate job description and advertised the job, the next step is to screen applicants' resumes to determine who meets the job requirements.
At this point, your success in identifying suitable candidates for interviewing will depend on the accuracy of the requirements you included in your job description.
You should be able to quickly determine who meets the minimum job requirements you identified and weed out those that don't. Then you can examine more closely the remaining resumes.
You should categorize activities and assign them priority levels so that you can create a summary of how you allocate your time over a typical week. From this summary, you can determine where you are wasting time and then address those areas.
Energy levels fluctuate throughout the day. Knowing how these "peaks" and "valleys" affect your ability to perform certain tasks can help you schedule your tasks in the most effective way.
Generally, energy levels are highest in the morning, so this is a good time to handle difficult or complex tasks that require good short-term memory and high concentration.
In the early afternoon, your energy levels start to drop, so it's best to focus on only moderately demanding tasks. By late afternoon, you have the least energy and should focus on tasks that are the easiest to complete. Afternoons lend themselves to creative tasks, processing information, or drawing on long-term memory.
Energy levels are moderate in the evening, so this is a suitable time for repetitive tasks that require concentration.
The Myers-Briggs test measures your preferences in terms of information gathering, decision making, energy source, and dealing with the outside world to determine your personality type and how you are likely to behave.
These personality traits affect how you manage your time. Each personality type has certain strengths and weaknesses. So knowing more about yourself can help you to determine how to improve your time management skills.
To manage your time and work effectively, you need to start with goals. You need to set goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-related. Once goals are set, you break them down into tasks to create a comprehensive to-do list. These tasks should be action-centered, incremental, measurable, and scheduled.
Once you know what tasks you need to perform to achieve your goals, you should prioritize each according to its importance and urgency. To do this, you can use a priority matrix, which categorizes tasks as either urgent and important, urgent but not important, not urgent but important, or not urgent and not important.
To prioritize your workload effectively, you can sequence or queue the tasks you need to perform.
This course, "Listening Basics," is the first in a series of courses to help you understand how you listen and how you can improve your listening skills.
This course covers the three essential aspects for understanding how you listen. The three lessons in this course are:
• "The Communication Process"
• "The Listening Process"
• "Listening as a Function of Communication."
According to a U.S. Department of Labor study "Skills and the New Economy," the average worker spends 55 percent of the day listening. Listening activities include using the telephone, engaging in conversation, and listening while in meetings and presentations. Unfortunately, most people fail to listen effectively and only remember 25 percent of what they hear. Could you listen more effectively at work?
In dollar terms, it is extremely important for companies and employees to take listening seriously. One communications analyst has estimated that business personnel receive 63 percent of their salary for listening.
Once you understand the listening process, you can learn and then practice listening skills. Training and practice can enhance your present listening skills. Otherwise, listening mistakes can cost your company clients and profits, and can decrease production.
Imagine a trucking company dispatcher misunderstanding Albany, New York for Albany, Georgia. Such a simple listening error could cost a company thousands of dollars to redirect a truck and its goods.
Better listening skills will prevent you from making expensive or embarrassing mistakes. This course will enable you to begin improving your listening ability.
"We need a definite purpose, a specific reason for listening, otherwise we don't pay attention and don't really hear or understand."--Robert Montgomery
One of the key elements of communication is listening. If you have developed good listening skills, it will be easier for you to pay attention, hear and understand messages.
You can learn to be a more effective listener by learning specific listening skills. These skills can reinforce, improve, or change your present listening behavior in a variety of situations.
This course, the second in the "Effective Listening" path, focuses on getting the most information possible out of a message.
So, how do you listen for comprehension? First, you should be able to identify and interpret verbal and nonverbal cues that add context to a verbal message. Second, you should also be able to comprehend the meaning of the speaker's verbal message. Your comprehension is based on understanding what you hear and what you need to ask questions about.
This course covers the following lessons that will help you develop better listening skills:
• "Identifying Verbal and Nonverbal Cues"
• "Interpreting Cues"
• "Understanding What You Hear"
• "Checking Your Understanding"
• "Understanding in Special Listening Situations"
Because this course teaches listening skills, it is important to have your audio turned on for certain sections. In some instances, the text that is spoken will display in the caption text box. In these cases, the important feature is not what is said, but how it is said. In these sections, it would be most effective for you to turn off the captions to get the full effect of the audio. In other instances, audio is presented without accompanying text. To complete these sections, you must have your audio turned on.
Cultivating cooperative relationships and building credibility are the foundations on which you can build influence and so get the results you need. Influencing skills are essential no matter what your position – but they're especially important if you don't have direct authority over those you need help from.
To get what you want in a situation where you have no authority, you need to communicate persuasively.
You need to use oral communication properly if you want to be taken seriously and be seen as credible. This is especially true when you don't have authority. It then becomes critical that you communicate well – as well as persuasively – otherwise it's likely you won't get what you set out to achieve.
Consider sales calls and telesales. The salespeople must have effective communication skills. Because they have only a limited time to sell their product, they must be highly persuasive speakers.
You may not be a salesperson, but you still need to be able to influence your colleagues, whether you're asking for a simple favor, a major commitment, or a buy-in for your ideas. Without formal authority, you can't simply order people to do your bidding. Persuasive communication can help.
Sometimes, even if you have prepared to the best of your ability, you may still meet some resistance. Knowing how to communicate persuasively involves knowing how to overcome resistance so you can achieve the result you want.
In economics, the "no free lunch" rule encapsulates the idea that to get something you want, you need to give something back. Or if you give nothing, you get nothing.
In its simplest sense, the idea of exchange is illustrated when you go to a store and exchange money for a desired item.
This idea of exchange – also known as "reciprocity" or "give-and-take" – isn't restricted to material items. It's a universal principle that applies to all kinds of situations.
Reciprocity becomes especially pertinent in cases where you need to influence people you have no direct authority over.
You may need help from a colleague on a project, for example. Or you may need key information from someone in order to complete an important report.
Reciprocity can be either positive or negative.
In positive reciprocity, the exchanges are mutually beneficial. For example, "If you cover my weekend shift this Saturday, I'll cover yours next month."
In negative reciprocity, the exchanges are negative or threatening. For example, "If you don't come to this meeting, you won't receive a production bonus."
You should avoid a negative bias in exchanges unless it's necessary. Negative bias can create a pattern of hostility – which can be very counter-productive in a work environment. Negative bias can also build mistrust and damage perceptions of individuals in the organization.
Consider you and your boss's relationship. Are you able to make a request to take on more responsibility? Can you get the direction you need? Are you happy with the relationship you have with your boss – with how you and your boss work together? If you have answered no to any of these questions, you may need to build influence with your boss in order to improve your situation.
Building influence with your boss can have many benefits. If you have influence, your boss is far more likely to listen to your thoughts and ideas.
You may be given more latitude, more support, or more challenging assignments.
As you may have deduced, emotions can have enormous power. They can motivate you to act by steering you toward what you desire and away from what you find unpleasant. Even negative emotions like anger can be beneficial by providing you with a stimulus to take productive action.
Emotions also help you understand your needs and those of others.
And recognizing and taking them into account can help you build strong, healthy relationships and improve your ability to relate to others.
To live full, rewarding lives, people need to make use of their minds and their hearts. Intellect and emotion aren't opposed to each other – they work together, informing your perceptions and reactions.
Favoring one or the other throws things out of balance.
But it's not possible to use emotions to your advantage if you suppress or misinterpret them. So emotional awareness is vital. It involves accurately recognizing your emotions and those of others.
A person's emotional intelligence quotient – or EQ for short – is the capacity to reason about emotional information. EQ is increasingly recognized as important in both personal and work environments.
Even in business contexts, where rational thought is traditionally valued over emotional skills, research shows that EQ is an important predictor of success.
This applies especially in areas where dealing well with others is crucial, like sales. People with high EQs relate better to others, make better use of feedback to develop themselves, and generally possess greater understanding of their environments than those with low EQs.
EQ can be divided into four general areas of competence – self-awareness, self-management, empathy, and relationship management.