Private Space

We all value our private space, even if some of us are extroverts. However, not many of us get as much private space as we really need. Yes, we said “need.” Private space, or solitude, is something which allows us to refuel ourselves and refill our engines, so to speak, with more fuel and get our bearings and decide in which direction we would like to navigate. This solitude is necessary on several levels, but we cannot fully appreciate it unless we examine those levels.

Solitudes helps us to regain lost power or the feeling of lost power. When someone gives us horrible news or insults us or betrays us, it is really important to find solitude to decide how this new information will figure into your future behavior and all of your current relationships. It is essentially reshaping yourself so that the perpetrator no longer has a place in your life, if that is what you choose to occur.

Solitude helps us to amplify our resources. Whatever our talents, or whatever our personal strengths, solitude helps us to focus on those, making them more concentrated, spreading our horizons, and giving us the ability to wield these talents with greater skill. While performance of a piano piece may occur in public, practice is usually best in solitude.

Private space helps to give us perspective. When we are continually surrounded by friends, spouses, children, activities, news, media, etc, we often lose perspective on the world around us because we are too close to our targets. Solitude gives us space to reflect on what is going on around us and to consider what really is important and what is just another distraction.

When we are deprived of this private space, and most of us are, we find it necessary to escape from reality in other ways, such as drug abuse or alcoholism. Fortunately, this does not have to occur in your business if you implement drug and alcohol testing procedures.

CMM Techology provides drug and alcohol screening equipment to businesses all over Australia. Call us today to find out more about areas around the world to which we ship: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1919910,00.html

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Personality vs Character

For the past three decades, personality has been improved upon and advertised and made available in abundance to the masses. The idea that one’s identity and self expression is only made possible through their personality is actually a fairly recent occurrence. In fact, personality is only a small part of who you are and its value is limited, not to mention its usefulness.

Today, we have available to us different clothes in different colors, an unlimited number and colors of hairstyles, not to mention personalization options all the way down to what color our text messages are that we send out to people. All of this personalization is great, of course, and one cannot fail to see the enjoyment which it can bring to people, but many individuals base their entire foundations and personal individuality upon their personality. Unfortunately, this is a very narrow ledge upon which to place yourself. It would be much more valuable to pick character options and use those. In fact, many individuals who place their life upon their own choices, responsibility and strength of character tend to grow really strong, really hard character simply out of necessity. This may not be a bad thing.

When asked to describe the difference between character and personality, you might say that personality is the bright red dress and that character is the woman inside of it. People are initially attracted to personality, which is why drug addicts and alcoholics tend to be excellent liars and good at putting on a front. However, family members and friends are more likely to stick around for the character, since after all personality is only an interchangeable interface. It is the character inside which either delivers quality or does not.

This is not to say that appearances are not everything. Appearances count for a great deal, since they display the respect which you have for yourself. However, for long-term results and permanent relationships with clients, using workplace drug testing to essentially test strength of character in your employees may be your best option. For more information on high quality drug and alcohol testing equipment, call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/happiness-in-world/201104/personality-vs-character

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Perceived Control

Something as intangible as perceived control is not usually discussed in something as tangible as a drug and alcohol testing forum, but the two subjects are closely related. Humans have a high need to define their own empires or self defined worlds, if you will, and with this need comes a very real desire to have peace and security in the knowledge that nobody else can do this. In simpler terms, we want to run our own lives and feel confident that we can do this without anyone else interfering. This confidence usually comes when we gain new positions of power or new levels of self realization or individuation.

Now that we have established the perimeters of perceived control, i.e. that perceived growth in ranking and in social status is directly tied to one’s ability to control their own environment, it would be a good idea to discuss possible ways to heighten this perception. Often, job promotion, measurable increases in income, perceived safety and security of one’s own riches and home environment, as well as artistic ability all contribute to perceived growth in ranking and in social status. Why are these important with regard to drug and alcohol testing?

When someone loses their perceived control over their own environment, the appropriate reactions to said loss are anger, violence, vengeance, and other forms of frustration or attempts to regain this perception of control. Since many of these options are forbidden in a workplace environment, many employees enjoy an alcoholic beverage or some type of illicit recreational drug abuse after work every day or just on the weekends. Unfortunately, they may not be factoring in the possibility that these substances can become so addictive that they will feel the need to abuse them before or during working hours, thus endangering themselves and their coworkers.

Workplace drug testing and alcohol breathalyser devices are important in maintaining a tolerable working environment for your employees, especially when their time in your company covers most of the day. For more information on employee drug and alcohol testing, call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1919910,00.html

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Impact on Workers When Family and Friends Drink or Use Drugs

A large number of Australian workers have family members or friends that use alcohol or abuse drugs on a regular basis. This has the damaging effect of causing these workers to become sidetracked on the job. Workers who are worried about addicted friends or family members have more absenteeism and have a history of being less industrious.

Inside the Addicted Family

While no situation can be termed typical, it is important to get an overview of what can occur inside the home of an addicted family. The drug problems of just one family member – a child, a teenager, or a spouse – can impact the entire household in a very short time.

A study completed by Glasgow University focused on what occurs inside the addicted home:[1]

  • In the beginning, all the family members will hover around the family member with the drug issue and attempt to solve the problem without seeking outside help. There is normally some embarrassment. This lack of seeking outside professional help will lead to a breakdown of the family dynamics. Physical and mental changes can occur at this early stage. It is at this early point that employers will begin to notice a change in the worker.
  • Over time the drug addicted family member will become the centre of attention in the family. Other family members will feel less important and may begin to act out, especially younger children. Relationships begin to change and close family ties are broken. This will typically cause the worker to become more distracted at work.
  • Without outside help the family will continue to disintegrate. Feelings of anger, anxiety, isolation, and depression are common. All of these feelings lead to increased issues at work.

What Can an Employer Do to Aid Employees?

How can an employer help employees that are experiencing problems with family members and friends who suffer from drug and alcohol related issues?

Employee assistance programs are one of the most positive ways to offer assistance to employees facing this problem.[2] However, it is up to the employers to make sure their employees know that assistance is available. In many companies workers are unaware of the benefits available, especially when it comes to drug and alcohol assistance programs.[3]

How far should an employer go in offering assistance to workers who have family members and friends who abuse alcohol and drugs? Statistics are not available to answer this question, but a great number of employees encourage their employers to offer substance counselling to family members with addiction problems since their addiction impacts the workplace. In a number of situations the counselling should be covered by health insurance. Another suggestion is for the employer to allow flex time in which the worker could assist in the treatment of the family member with the addiction and not have to worry about losing their job due to attending counselling sessions or providing family assistance during normal working hours.

The most important step in aiding the worker with the addicted family member is recognizing the problem. As mentioned earlier, the majority of families close ranks, and do not openly discuss the problems they are experiencing. As an employer, you must be diligent in looking for clues to at-home substance problems. Monitor your employees for an increase in missed days, loss of productivity, and at-work distractions. If you notice any of these behaviours occurring speak privately with the employee and offer the help set out in your company’s employee assistance policy when appropriate.

CMM Technology (http://www.cmm.com.au/) can provide the highest quality alcohol and drug testing equipment to support a drug free workplace. Workers dealing with the addiction of a family member at home should not have to deal with co-worker substance abuse in the workplace too.


References

[1] Drugs in the Family. (n.d.). Retrieved from Joseph Rowntree Foundation: http://www.jrf.org.uk/publications/drugs-family-impact-parents-and-siblings

[2] Guidelines for Addressing Alcohol and other Drugs in the Workplace. (n.d.). Retrieved from Safework Australia: http://www.safework.sa.gov.au/uploaded_files/drugsalc_guidelines.pdf

[3] Ibid

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Updating Your Business Plan

Your business plan should be your action plan. It should state your goals, the mission of why your business exists in the first place, and what you hope to accomplish in the future, not just on a financial basis, but on a service basis. Money follows service, not the other way around.

Linda Banks talks about how an up-to-date business plan is not just about projecting future numbers so that you can receive a business loan or some extra cash flow. She talks about how your business plan is basically your to-do list, which delineates how each specific action is meant to help your company in particular and your industry specifically. It is not meant to be changed to fit your whims or creative processes. It is meant to be tailored to necessity. How so?

Well, first of all, as your operations change to suit your clients’ or customers’ needs, and they change in specific circumstances to meet one-time demand or specific problems, all of these changes, alterations, and guidelines need to be appropriately reflected in your business plan, including why they work and why these steps work as opposed to former steps which were less effective. If you do not understand why some operations work better than others, then it may be in your best interest to find out.

While many companies have a business plan which is reviewed every six months or annually, it may be in your best interests to review on a three or four month basis, so that you are reminding yourself continually of your original plans and are able to properly recognize how the market has changed and how your company has changed to adapt to a new time period.

While employee drug and alcohol screening has been used in the workplace for the past three decades, it is worth noting that many business plans do not delineate activities as specific as day-to-day operations and monthly or every-other-monthly testing of your workers. This is unfortunate, because workplace drug testing must be budgeted from your accounts, must be shown as part of your operating expenses on your financials, and it must be scheduled. The best business plans are planned down to the very last detail. Call CMM Technology today for more information concerning our alcohol breathalyser devices and our drug tests: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://linda-banks.suite101.com/business-plans-a21203

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The Ramifications

Workplace drug testing is about protection. This protection is meant to guard against both intentional and unintentional injuries on the jobsite. Unfortunately, drug related injuries are often unintentional due to the individual being under the influence of the drug.

In “The Autobiography of an Execution,” David Dow describes his experiences defending death row inmates in the United States. Death row inmates in Texas have very little chance of even delaying the execution date, since Texas executes more than any other state and it covers quite a large area of America. Dow talks about some of his clients, and how they originally put themselves in such a precarious position. Many of the crimes were based upon vengeance for hurt family members or unfaithful spouses, but a significant number of them were drug related crimes, and many of the drug related crimes involved the killer being under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and therefore not being in full control of their faculties or reasoning.

Drugs and alcohol take away your ability to correctly judge a situation and avoid ramifications. Employee drug testing gives you a certain amount of control over potential employee drug abuse, avoiding some of the intentional and unintentional consequences which can arise.

So, how unintentional can accidents be?

Well, as it turns out, everything is pretty intentional. The choice to abuse drugs or alcohol is fully conscious and premeditated. There is no way that you cannot choose to initially abuse either type of substance, and then continue to abuse it. It is completely up to the individual to decide and discern.

In Dow’s book, he described how, even though drugs and alcohol were available to most of the inmates, some of them turned around and repented of their previous actions. However, this change of heart obviously didn’t change their sentence, and his role as the attorney for these death row inmates was merely to delay execution for as long as possible. Hope lasted for thirty day increments since delays often only lasted a month.

Whatever your thoughts on preserving and giving up the rights to the sanctity of life, it is obvious that many of these atrocious crimes were committed while the people in question were unable to use their own sane judgment about what to do and how to react. Call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

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Religion and Science

Whether or not you practice or believe in a specific religion, you may agree that, higher power or not, religion itself is typically man-made. In fact, religion is one of the best ways in which humans can feel as if they exercise control over their lives. This is already the case, of course, but many people feel as if they do not have enough control over their own lives and often misdirect this and attempt to help others with their lives. This is, of course, not possible because as much as you think you may know about someone, they are a completely different person and are living a completely different life from yours. Even friendly well-meaning advice is often given but rarely taken for this reason.

When we enter what is sometimes called a religious state of mind, we enter a territory which is very familiar to us. Humans observe tradition because it allows people to become closer to one another. Tradition essentially preordains certain rituals to take place and frees the mind up to new ideas which are posed by first creating a safe and extremely familiar territory in which someone can feel right at home. Those of you who had good childhoods are aware of how safe and comfortable you felt at home, and how you were at your most creative when you were in familiar territory which you knew really well. Just as congregations are more receptive to new ideas when surrounded by familiar traditions, just about all men and women are more likely to accept new innovation when they feel connected with familiar people and circumstances in their lives. As long as one part of their lives remains the same, they have familiar territory to escape to if necessary. When scientific innovation and religious tradition clash, humans are more likely to stick with familiar territory. When drug and alcohol testing was first introduced to the workplace, many employees balked at this new idea, because they felt that it invaded their privacy, with which they were very familiar and felt no reason to change.

Workplace drug testing has since become the norm, and employee drug and alcohol screening is used frequently in many companies, both large and small. Call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8989987

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Planning for Growth

Darren Dahl, of Inc.com, talks about how to grow a small business into a large company. He describes how the statistics show that this is a staggering project and that the likelihood that it will happen is one tenth of one percent. This is an extremely small number. So what does one do?

First, we would like to display Dahl’s recommendation to the world. He talks about how to grow your company over all of the hurdles that it is likely to encounter, and how to attack the market from many different directions in order to achieve as high as a market saturation as possible. We believe that he is experienced on this topic, probably having researched the success of the small number of small business which grew into these large companies with over several hundred million dollars in revenue. In Dahl’s mind, it is a matter of coming at the problem hard, strong and fast. In other words, it is a matter of finagling into the good graces of your customers, and then pulling various strings until you trick them into remembering you in the future.

Now we would like to bring up some points which were written by Henry Ford himself in his autobiography, “My Life and Work.” He discusses how business is done in real life rarely works and that many businesses fail because of their inaccurate principles. Ford talks about his success and explains how the invention of the automobile had no market, no mass consumer market, and very few people were interested in it. He was told by many people that advertising was key and that multiple models at high prices would sell more cars. Interestingly enough, he quoted numbers of the annual years of success of the Ford Motor Company, and described how a business cannot function properly if the money (and the motivation of money) comes before the service to the consumer. He says that if the service is forefront and maintained, then “the money will take care of itself.” After he obtained controlling majority of the company’s shares, he changed these principles to reflect his numbers, and the business skyrocketed.

So, planning for growth means that money cannot be the motivation for success and that the purpose of the business cannot fully be to make money. It must be service and satisfying the needs of the customer. And this, in part, is facilitated by protective measures guarding our business’s assets. These measures include drug and alcohol screening of your employees and doing this prior to employment, as well as implementing regularly scheduled workplace drug testing through employment. Call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.inc.com/guides/small-business-growth-strategies.html

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Picking a Mentor

A mentor is someone who facilitates your growth, who has in the past shared the same goals which you have now, and who has succeeded in those endeavors enough times and to such a sufficient extent that they qualify as a master in those areas. Essentially, it is the relationship between an apprentice and a master of any craft.

Tom Ganser talks about this, describing how selection of mentors for teachers should be in a pool that has already been designed and which mentors can join, if they wish. Mentoring can be a really time consuming process, and if you are not sure of what you’re getting yourself into, then you can really wear yourself out or use undesired resources in helping your protégée. And as for picking a mentor, you must be careful to delineate to the prospective mentor all that you can think of that you will need or could potentially need. While teaching is just one example of a profession in which you would need to be mentored, this process applies to other mentorships, as well, since the relationship between the mentor and the apprentice would still have the same dynamics. You can spend a great deal of time with your mentor, and if your personalities clash, then you are not likely to utilize the wisdom that they have to give you.

The normal process of mentor protégée interaction involves three steps. First, there is the teaching, where the mentor acts as a teacher and gives information which the apprentice would not otherwise be aware of. Second, the stage of mutual growth and application, where both the mentor and the student work together and grow together, and this can be a high level of productivity and this can last for years. Finally, in the end, there is a separation of mentor and apprentice, which typically occurs when the student thwarts the master in some way, either by outdoing them or working alone on their project.

Unfortunately, many apprentices at this point stop allowing themselves to be mentored, because they have mastered their topic. However, true growth resides in continually finding and implementing new and better and more experienced masters of your craft. CMM Technology practices the craft of supplying high quality employee drug and alcohol testing equipment to you and your business, and we are partnered with Mediscreen, which engages in onsite drug testing for companies all over Australia. Call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00098655.1995.9957257

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Other Jobsite Hazards

While you are busily running your employee drug and alcohol testing campaign, you may wish to be informed of other jobsite hazards which can occur in your workplace. For example, isolated incidents in the past involving showing up to work with a gun and killing several coworkers usually had to do with stress and feeling out of control of their lives. This is one article you will not want to miss.

Carelessness and all that goes with it. Employee carelessness primarily has to do with cleanliness when scrubbing up a jobsite, making sure that toxic chemicals never come in contact with human skin, and making sure that all physical safety protocols are followed. Needless negligence which leads to injury or fatality is laughable. Employees should be trained on what to do and know why they are doing it.

Fatigue and slow-moving zombies. Many of your employees act “lazy” when in fact they are extremely tired. This is usually the result of internal inflammation, lack of hydration, and lack of nutrition in their diets. While you cannot control how they eat at home, it may be a good idea to update your vending machine or make some healthy alternatives, both in food and drink, available on your jobsite.

Lack of direction, leading to lack of focus. When you only inform your employees of what they should be doing, without giving them some insight into why something works a certain way or what their next steps will be, then you are sabotaging them and sabotaging yourself by assuming that they do not have the brains to be responsible and exercise their power for good. Make sure your employees have clearly defined tasks and that they understand a little of the big picture and how their immediate actions are helping the company as a whole.

Employee drug and alcohol testing is excellent for identifying and eliminating possible drug related and alcohol related accidents. However, there are other signs, including stress and fatigue which must also be watched for. If you do not maintain awareness of your workplace at all times, then individuals who need help, or even just a break, may snap. Call CMM Technology today for drug and alcohol testing equipment:(+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.burn-injury-resource-center.com/2011/11/careless-employees-cause-explo.html

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Leading by Example

Albert Einstein is quoted as saying that setting an example is not one way to lead, that it is the only way to lead. Interestingly enough, Einstein’s personal habits created a huge rift in how society saw fashion, mathematics, science, and astronomy. He often worked alone, and frequently was so obsessed with his personal habits that very few individuals, except for those who really knew him, were aware of how his creative genius would even change the immediate world around him. Today, we know better.

The stars shine out on both common man and kings of empires, and see neither as anything special. Leading by example is the only way to go when defining your business. It is impossible to ask your workers to do anything which you cannot or will not do yourself. If you hire experts who are smarter than you are, then set an example of being willing to learn and willing to change your paradigms to fit your new found knowledge.

It has been proven multiple times that humans cannot be controlled and they cannot be “managed” in any sense of the word. Only systems can be defined and implemented. You can influence others through your own behavior, but you cannot make them do a thing. Never underestimate the power of your influence, though. Over time, when individuals are around someone with certain habits, they begin picking up those habits and the lifestyle surrounding those habits. One of the managers of this company has positively influenced the author with his behavior, setting an example of tolerance and long suffering which has sunk in deeper than he can imagine. The same principle applies to anyone else, for the author is no special exception to this rule.

Your employees are watching you, carefully taking note of your actual habits, and whether or not your words match your actions and match what you do when you are by yourself in the privacy of your solitude. We all try to make ourselves to be better than we really are. It is the reality which influences them, not mere words or outward appearances. Drug and alcohol testing is part of this process, protecting your company assets, indicating that your assets are worth protecting and that your workers are productive in a valued company. For more information on employee drug and alcohol screening, call CMM Technology today: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newLDR_60.htm

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Drug Testing and Unruly Employees

“Unruly” is such a fun word. You may think of laughing children with wild hair running around when you hear it. It seems to denote mischief and gaiety. It doesn’t even seem like a negative word. However, when your adult employees are behaving immaturely and childishly and you find yourself compelled to guide them much like a fourth grade class, then there is a problem and “unruly” takes on a whole new meaning.

Gary Blau and Jack Ryan did a study on work ethic and how employees are mixing work and pleasure, job enjoyment and job fulfillment, and how various individuals thought about work. As in many cases, the mentality that one has it hard in life and that one’s work is a continuous pusher of this hardship helps to facilitate childish beliefs about working and taking care of your job. In fact, jobs are like any living creature. They must be well fed, exercised, and trained, and once your career begins to take off, that is when they really require your care and attention. At that point, it is no longer about the money or about rising up on the corporate ladder, but about regular maintenance, setting goals, and achieving milestones. These goals must be specific to each individual, because not everyone has the same dream, and therefore every worker in your company must mind their own job maintenance, and make their intentions known to those around them.

Workplace drug testing helps to identify employees who may still have this “hardship” mentality, and who simply wish to be laborers for the rest of their lives. Many people claim interest in owning or operating a business, but this is nothing like regular technician’s work. However, even a technician will not be satisfied doing the work of a technician if their mentality is that of “woe is me.” Employee drug testing helps to identify the next stage in that process, which tends to be a need to escape through drugs or alcohol. If the work ethic remains intact, however, then it does not matter where you work or what you are doing: the money will take care of itself. It is essentially about personal discipline. Call CMM Technology today for more information on employee drug and alcohol testing equipment: (+61) 1300 79 70 30.

http://psycnet.apa.org/index.cfm?fa=search.displayRecord&uid=1997-42793-006

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