Category Archives: mindset

Break-Through Mindsets and Creating What You Want – Part 2

If you haven’t read it yet, please read Part 1 of this story here.

After two short stints in two small office environments she found herself out of work. The classic, ‘Last on, first off‘ syndrome. Her employers had tried. But they were small operations and in reality needed someone who wasn’t as raw with office work as she was at the time.

Imagine the challenge that being out of work posed to her new found mindset and self-belief.

Her old factory job loomed like a giant magnet trying to drag her back into her old life and everything that came with it.

Imagine her strength of character to ‘stay the course.’

I really, really don’t want to go back to a factory job. But I just don’t know if I’m cut out for a an office job.” she exclaimed.

“What do you want?” I asked.

You know the answer to that question Gary! But I don’t know what to do.

“Well, you’ve proven twice now that you can study. One of the side benefits of studying is that you have to use office skills to do your homework. So, in a way it’s like practice for your future job.” I suggested.

You know, I have a friend who works in real estate and she suggested that I give that a go.”

So off she went for a third course and obtained a qualification for Property Management. It took a while but she finally got a job. It wasn’t a full time job, just four days per week. They understood that it was her first experience in the industry. They promised training by one of the Directors of the company. It has been over six months since she started and she has seen that Director twice in that entire time. So much for training. Yes, it is sink or swim at that company!

Recently she informed me that she had been required to use her own car to visit the houses she was ‘managing’ and that she had been given an ‘office phone’ that she was to use to answer landlord calls on her three days off per week. She told me that she didn’t think it was fair that she was expected to work on her days off  and that she had to use her own car to travel around on business duties.

“Are you receiving an allowance for these activities?” I asked.

No.” was her response.

“I’m pretty sure your job would be tied to a Government Award and if it is then I’m pretty sure the conditions of the Award are being breached by your employer.” I said.

But I don’t want to lose my job.” Fear, a powerful mindset kicked in. The type that says the ‘little person‘ should just be happy with what they have and don’t rock the boat because you could lose your job.

I had to tread carefully and respectfully. This is her life and she has the right to be in control of it. Which includes sticking with mindsets that I might not agree with.

“What do you want?” I asked.

To work for someone who treats me fairly. I’m happy to work hard and I believe that I do. I’ve learned a lot. I’m glad I have been given this opportunity and I appreciate it. But that doesn’t mean I should work on my days off and not be paid for it. When I go shopping, the phone rings. When I’m out with my friends, the phone rings. Once I left the phone at work and they called me up on my personal phone and asked me why I hadn’t taken the phone with me. To top it all off my boss keeps telling everyone in the office about how much she hates Property Management. How’s that supposed to make me feel?“.

While the desire to jump on my horse and go riding in to ‘save‘ my young relative seemed to beckon me with every word she said, I knew that this could prove to be another major mindset shift opportunity for her. Support was what she need, not a knight in shining armour.

“What if we were to do some homework and find out exactly what your rights are. Then we can see if you can have a conversation with your boss, armed with the facts.”

I can’t talk to my boss about this, I’ll get the sack!“.

“Maybe, let’s worry about that later. Let’s get some facts and then you can decide what you want to do. You’re in control. You decide if you take action or not.”

We discovered a Modern Award that covered her role. It identified allowances and normal hours of work. We also had a look at her ‘contract’. No mention of the Award there and no mention of allowances and use of her vehicle, nor answering the phone on an ‘on-call‘ basis. It seemed to me that she had a legitimate case to take to her boss.

She decided that she didn’t want to raise the issue with her boss. “Maybe I’ll just start looking for another job.

Fair enough. She had come a long way and it was understandable that such a conversation would be too big a leap.

But life can have a funny way of contriving events to force an issue. Just last week, on one of her days off her phone rang. She took the call and referred the caller on to her boss. Her boss took the call and then rang her back.

She was informed that she was ‘unprofessional‘ for not completing the call herself and her boss felt that she wasn’t meeting the standards of the role. Please recall that this conversation is happening on one of her day’s off and she had been told, yet again earlier that week that she wasn’t going to be put on full time.

My young female relative was calm. But she wasn’t silent. She informed her boss that she knew her rights and that she should be receiving an allowance for answering the phone on her days off, or they should simply employ her full time. She was again told that the quality of her work was not up to standard and that if she didn’t like answering the phones outside of her scheduled four days then maybe someone who really wanted to work would be happy to have her job.

Aaah, when challenged, turn to bullying. That’s the spirit Ms Employer (yes friends, her boss is a woman)!

My relative called me. “I think I’m going to lose my job. How can I go into the office tomorrow and see my boss. I don’t like this conflict, maybe I should just quit right now.

“If you quit, that would certainly be understandable. But if you do have a conversation and you stay calm, focus on the facts and be open to a range of solutions, what’s the worst that could happen?”

She could yell at me and I don’t like be yelled at.”

Fair enough.

Plus, I’m not a very strong person so I can’t have that sort of conversation.” Yes, another powerful mindset that can easily emerge and hold people back from creating what they want.

“I’m sorry but that’s not what I see standing in front of me. I see a brave, courageous young woman who has been on a two year journey of self-improvement. I see a young woman who has been knocked down and continues to get back up. I see a young woman who has challenged and overcome her mindset that she can’t improve. I see a young woman who has choice and who has the power to act on that choice. I see a young woman who is taking on the challenges of creating the life she wants. I also see a young woman who I respect no matter what you choose to do going forward.”

Earlier tonight she contacted me. She had spoken with her boss. The result. She is now working an extra half day in the office to take calls.

While not a perfect result it was a win-win. She has the opportunity to earn more money in a fairer (but certainly not completely fair nor in compliance with the Award, but that’s another issue) and her boss has her for an extra half day doing a job that is obviously required.

The best outcome is the evidence that this experience provides for my young relative. She has proven that she can challenge her own mindset and have conversations that she didn’t think were possible for her to have. And, from the perspective of her starting point she has proven that she can achieve a win-win.

That said, if you or anyone you know has a Real Estate business in the south eastern region of Melbourne and you are interested in meeting my young relative and exploring the possibility of engaging her to join a vibrant and supportive team, please email me at and mention this article.

I’m of the view that her current employer doesn’t deserve someone of her qualities and quite frankly, she deserves a ‘break’ and if I can help facilitate that, then I would really like to contribute to creating one for her.

Gary Ryan enables individuals, teams and organisations to matter.
Visit Gary at

Break-Through Mindsets and Creating What You Want – Part 1

A young female relative of mine is amazing. In her early 20s she has been challenging her mindset and creating more of the life she desires. At 22 she had been a factory worker for 6 years. So much for Gen Y not staying with an employer!

But she hated her work. Everyday the same thing. Pull this lever, push that lever. Time moved so slowly she could hear the ‘tick tock’ of the clock above the noise of the machinery!

She wanted to quick. But what to do?

We had a chat. She mentioned that she had wanted to try some office work.

“What if you went and did some formal education, maybe starting with a Certificate II in Business Administration or something like that. Maybe you could then make the move off the factory floor.”

I’m a terrible student. I can’t study!“, was her reply.

Aaaah mindsets, they kick in very quickly when the unfamiliar is mentioned.

“What do you want?” I asked.

To get off the factory floor and to never have to look at a machine again! But I don’t know anything else!

“Which is why going back to some form of school will help. How else will you get away from factory work and get another type of job?” I queried.

Maybe I should give it a go. But my employer won’t help me. They have never given me any proper training.

“What if you were to ask them? What’s the worst they can say?”


She went ahead and asked about support for some training. She even shared her desire to move off the factory floor. “No!” was the response she received and she was also told that she was, “Needed on the factory floor.” Yes, after 6 years she knew a thing or two about the machines.

Can you imagine her reaction to her employer’s negativity? “I’ll never get out of here. I need the money so I can’t quit. I’m stuck.” Mindsets are hard to shift and having an employer like hers made it even harder.

“What do you want?” I prodded.

To get off the factory floor.” was her response.

“What can you do to make that happen?” I probed.

Go back to school outside work.” she responded.

We discovered that she could do her course online and that due to government support it was far cheaper than expected. She completed her Certificate II in Business Administration. It might not sound like much but it was a monumental effort and moment.

She asked for a trial in the office.

“No” was the response. “We need you on the factory floor.” Apparently it was an honour to be employed by this employer and she should be grateful for the job she had. No need for self improvement around here!

See, what was the point!” she exclaimed to me. “I’ll never leave here!

“What do you want?” I asked.

To get off the factory floor.” she responded.

“What are you going to do now?” I probed, yet again.

Maybe I should do another course?” she suggested.

“Maybe you should. You have now proved that you can finish a course. Why not go to the next level and see what happens?”

“Okay. I’ll give it a go.” Her mindset had shifted. The power of evidence and movement was working.

She completed her Certificate III in Business Administration. She approached her employer about doing a trial in the office. “No! We need you on the factory floor.”

She signed up with an employee agency. She got offered a job as a clerk in a small company on less money than she was earning on the factory floor.

What do you think she did?

She quit her factory job. Aaah, to have been a fly on the wall and seen the look on her employer’s face…”but, but we need you on the factory floor!”. Well, yes you probably do. But an employer – employee relationship is a two way street. If they had given her a go in the office and supported her development, she’d probably be there today. But she’s not.

Moving away from what you don’t want can be a major motivator for getting you to take action, even if it may appear to be a backward step in order to create what you do want.It also takes bravery and courage. I’m proud of my young relative (can you tell?)!

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this mindset shifting saga where I will share more of the ups and downs of this major mindset shift that has, and is occurring in my relative.

Oh, and if you think the lack of her employer’s support in the story so far is mind-boggling, wait until you read Part 2… and the even greater challenges she has had with shifting her mindset from one of being out of control of her life to being in control of her life.

Gary Ryan enables individuals, teams and organisations to matter.
Visit Gary at

Mindsets Matter

plan for personal success, Gary Ryan, Beyond Being Good

Over the years of helping my clients create more success, one cause that stands out more than any other is your mindset.

Your mindset matters. A lot.

Think about it. Right now, are you as successful, across all aspects of your life as you desire?

If you are, terrific! Keep doing whatever it is that you are doing that has created your success.

Most people are not as successful as they would like to be.

So what’s stopping them from being as successful as they desire? Better still, what is stopping you from being as successful as you wish to be?

Logically if you are not as successful as you desire, then your theories, or mindset for creating success is not working, at least not completely. It might be working in some areas of your life, but not all areas of your life. In fact, if you really think about, you have multiple theories about success. You will have theories about how to create successful relationships, how to create a successful business, how to create a successful career, how to be healthy etcetera. Some of these theories will be working. Some won’t be, but you’ll still be using them. And then you wonder why you aren’t as successful as you desire.

Here’s the kicker. Some of your theories for success used to work. So you keep using them. However the world changes. You change. Yet you keep using these old theories that used to work.

These theories are embedded into your mindset and stop you from creating future success. Yes, that is right. Your old theories that once created success are no longer valid and new theories must be adopted. The evidence is as plain as the nose on your face, especially if you’re not as successful as you desire to be.

When did you last consider your mindset? Are you even aware of your theories for success? How do you know they still work?

One mindset that many employees have is that it is their organisation’s responsibility to develop them. This mindset is akin to abdicating your responsibility for your continued development. Why would anyone consciously make that choice? The issue is that people don’t consciously make this choice, they subconsciously make this choice. The outcome of such a mindset is that the person loses. Big time. If your organisation doesn’t invest in your development then, with this mindset you are screwed.

To be brutally honest an organisation that doesn’t prioritise or invest in your development isn’t a high performing organisation and probably isn’t worthy of your full talents. But if you don’t develop yourself under such circumstances then your full talents won’t be worth much either. Not to prospective employers anyhow. And then you’re stuck. You’re stuck with an employer who isn’t developing you and because your mindset is that it is their responsibility to do that, you don’t improve yourself. And then you can’t get a job anywhere else. Not a very secure strategy if you ask me!

When did you last consider your mindset? Are you even aware of your theories for success? How do you know they still work?

At the same time, your mindset is the most important factor for creating the future success you desire. If you don’t change your mindset or keep up a strong and proactive one, you’ll keep doing what you’ve done and you’ll continue to be dissatisfied with your level of success.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Improve yourself and take control of your development. Use whatever development your organisation offers as a bonus and take charge of creating the success you desire.

Gary Ryan enables organisations, leaders and talented people to move Beyond Being Good.
Commence a complimentary trial of the Yes For Success Platform here.