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Archive for January, 2012

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BACK TO THE ROOTS

For some reason I met so many people recently whom I did not see for ages. And interesting was that they really all become older while I did not see this on me :-)

And while we exchanged that kind of boring joining (asking stupid questions to get connected again) many of them asked me how I am doing in the new world and that they missed me, at least they said so. You belong to the country you are born, that is always like that and it will  never change. The habitat is in your instinct and wherever you go, once you are ill or you have a broken heart or you want to share any joy, you want to go back to your roots – home. There where you know the secret of smoking your first cigarette behind the little house with your schoolmates and your first kiss. And while all places in the world seem excellent to stay for a while, the place you will feel safe is always where you have been growing up. And while I am driving through Vienna I see so many places with million scenes I remember.

I remember walking without shoes in the night in the streets when it was early morning still having the music and laughter in my ears and the smell of fresh bread and freshly brewed coffee let me remember some of the crazy things I had to go through being always so busy. My favourite story was connected with my huge darkblue SUV. This car transported thousands of children and served as a rolling home. It was a wonderful day mid of august, when I ran to a meeting and coming back -I again, like many times before ,  could not find my car key. A short look into my car and I knew that there is trouble. The key was shining from the seat. “If I call the car service – 4 hours, if I call my husband 3 hours and 5 weeks discussion, Ok one solution that is bad but I really had no choice – I take a stone and I will hit the window”. 

Did you ever try to smash a window? I tried 5 times, and every time the stone and my swinging hand bounced back leaving not even the slightest scratch on my window. My mind went crazy while I thought that there must be  any other way. How do people do it breaking into cars?  Driven by the pressure of time and the fact that no one should alarm police, while I tried to rob my own car,  I was thinking on  another solution.

We talk about the time when the mobile phones used to be a midsize suitcase placed in the middle of your car. So phone  and key were inside and my deal was waiting. I went with my summer dress and my high heels to borrow a hammer from the construction workers that I spotted nearby. “Excuse me” I said “Could I borrow your hammer”………………..The guy asked if he could help. “No” was my response “because I just have to get my key out of my car”.The fact that the poor man had a strong migrant background saved me and most probably him and gave me time to go on with  my endeavour.  It took me 2 swings and the window burst into million of little glass parts that were spread all over. I was happy because I could make it to my contract, and when I handed back the hammer, the  guys had eyes wide open and stirred at me while I said “I forgot my key”

My blue  SUV car had a spell, all of my friends knew that. There are cars and there are cars. The blue Voyager was such another one. A magic blue giant.

I am and was and will be always in a hurry, because I do minimum 4 things at the same time. Scientist call it Multitasking, people around me call it madness. I think they are sometimes right. Monday afternoon and after the 12th time not finding a parking my business partner was already impatiently walking up and down in front of the office entrance looking on his watch. When I did my 7th round I shout out of the window while I was passing that I will park on the sidewalk finishing the next round, leaving the emergency light on. This meeting was really important. At this time the business aviation was the stepchild of aviation and we had to run behind each and every deal. What is the same today with the difference that we can text easily truth and lies :-).  So I parked on the sidewalk of Brigittenauer Laende (4 lanes) right hand side. I slided down the seat and the gear of the Chrysler voyager was connected to the stirring wheel, so guessing I put it on PARK I slammed the door and was mentally already in my meeting. Everything went really fast.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE FOLLOWING SHOULD NOT BE TRIED BY ANYONE

………….running to the office building, I saw people waving and cars horning while I had a strange feeling that the traffic stopped completely, and when I turned backwards I saw my own car driving behind me. EMPTY. My attempts to open the door were useless as the automatic locker locked it after 10 m. My mind was twisting and I tried to hold back my empty car moving like a ghost, shouting to the woman with her dog in direct line of my moving car to get out of the way. I remember her jumping in the bush with her little dog flying through the air. My car crossed all 4 lanes  easily and I was still trying to hold it back while it slowly without control crashed against the pillar on the bridge, the only and really the only pillar that was there. Otherwise i would drive down the hill and end up in the Danube with me hold on the handle. Everything went so fast and i did not remove the key while the gear stayed on DRIVE, obviously. When the police arrived, my car was standing embracing the pillar but the wheels were still turning.

If you ever felt shameful, imagine this, that was for the strong nerves – you maybe do not know how it was when a crowd of people was gathering, laughing while taking pictures  and you have to wait for your husband to come with the 2nd key (do not ask me about his reaction) because the exercise with the hammer would for sure bring me to a place that we call in Vienna – GUGLHUPF.

Life is never boring

d

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BODY LANGUAGE

Look at the person you are sitting opposite. If she or he having legs and arms crossed and pressing his or her lips together, while moving on the chair. Sorry you lost that deal.

Or is he or she less than an outstreched arm away and playing with his hair and showing the  aorta, like a vampire ……….motivation to bite, then you also lost the deal, but maybe you have a date soon ;-)

It is very interesting and unfortunately it is what we can say 80% of all deals how you sit, speak move and the most important is where do you sit, and what is the dynamic of the group you are in this specific moment. Forget all your spreadsheets and also your product. You can gain points by doing things right. The problem is while you concentrate on 3 points of your body your legs show to the exit and you lost.

We are marionettes of our inner soul, we cannot hide what we do not want.

Several studies and pictures that are analysed only later will prove evidence that when your head wants to say yes, your arms and your legs maybe clearly say no. You still can insist on being a little sweet sheep when you straight forward take the chair that all the others avoid or that they are dancing around, because as one of my businesscontacts once said on the question why the chair of the boss is empty even it would be better for us to sit closer :*he is abroad but we feel his spirit always present here. * – the guy wanted to make a joke but he was right, like with the animals we or at least some of us seem to have their places and disrupting this structure will cause trouble.

Everything about body language has to do with values in life. And values are the strongest motor for what can be good or horrble. Overstep your boarders with someone whos value is precision and being extremly in time. I have such a clash of values in my direct family. While my father wants to arrange things already one year ahead, I love to be independant in my private arrangements, and many times we had a conflict for the fact that we both found that the other one is terrible. The science talks about Neurolinguistic programming and some people will think, oh no, while others believe that this is a method to get people having a similar opinion. You have to control your and the behaviour of others so long till your opposite is doing the same things like you – this is called pacing, that finally leads to rapport, when you agree on the deal. Manipulation say people while others call it genius. I call it something that should be delt with care. What does it finally help you if you have a rapport about a thing and then the deal is cancelled when the first part is not executed according to your agreement.

A deal is a complex thing and many more people are involved and pacing and rapport and right chair are little helpers or finally steps to come to the core and the purpose. 

I love another story about Steve Jobs, when the whole team of a company he wanted to buy agreed that the main person will be late and then disturb the plans of the meeting by taking over control. Steve Jobs intuition let it again break as he started in time without the guy and when he came in to enjoy his stageperformance, Jobs gave him a lection in behaviour and cut him completely.

Here can check if you are a good or a bad boss (Carol Kinsay Goman writes in Forbes, this is from her…..brillant)

From the results of a recent survey of over 200 business professionals, here are the top twelve body language behaviors of less-than-ideal bosses.

1. You stop in the middle of a discussion and simulate golf swings once you begin to lose interest.

2. You constantly interrupt or talk over a staff member as if the person hadn’t been speaking at all.

3. You ignore all underlings in the corridor, even if the employee extends a greeting, but you make sure to acknowledge your fellow executives.

4. You roll your eyes and grimace at any comment that differs from your own point of view.

5. You send nonverbal signals of exclusion and disinterest when members of your team are talking: You look away, lean back, cross your arms and legs, tilt your head in a “looking-down-the-nose” position, and angle your torso away from the speaker.

6. You conduct every conversation with female staff members with your eyes on their chests.

7. You check your e-mail, shuffle papers, work on your computer, take phone calls, and clip your fingernails while meeting with employees.

8. You announce an “open door” policy and glare at anyone who dares to enter your office without an appointment.

9. You call for staff meetings and routinely forget to show up.

10. You pat a team member on the head while telling him he did a good job.

11. You lean over your assistant, and invade her personal space, to check her paperwork or computer screen.

And (drum roll) my personal favorite — which actually stopped the meeting cold . . .

12. You lean across the table toward a subordinate, stretch out your arm and make a loud “shushing” sound while wagging your hand (fingers to thumb like a snake head).

If you agree on more than 4 you are awful, I had something like 6.

Kindly

D

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HELP WANTED

Once upon a time I married a pilot and jumped from the nightlife and shopping orgies and complaints about the temperature of the mochitos in Hong Kong Peninsula Hotel directly to the world of babies and regularly cooked meals and shirts to be ironed and food shopping. The last one is my allergy. For those who know me – the ultimate nightmare. Food shopping at the Naschmarkt is for me an equivalent of spending a weekend in prison.  I simply do not have  the love for the details and the passion that some have when they look at a cheese. Which by the way does not mean, that i do not like to eat it. So to find a way and to have everything running smoothly, you should hire a housekeeper. And this was in 1984, since this moment my life is not the same anymore.

Allyn, Sarah, Amia, Heidi, Yoni and whatever we called them. I wanted help and I had more work than I had before.. No, I searched for help and I got troubles. The problem is the language and maybe the culture and the expectations. And I have to differentiate. Help is not help in the new and the old world. The old world is more expensive but more reliable. Helpers are recommended from one society lady to the other and the pressure on the helper is immense, as if one is not satisfied the entire network is breaking apart, so this somehow works then more or less.


 The new world is the pure adventure. Some of the items I am using such as dishwasher or key are very exotic items that are used for other things, and a key is something that is not that important so you can leave it outside while going to the next city for half a day. Our driving license looks like a business card, right. That is the problem because on my question where my driving license is that I had in my pocket of the coat last night, the help is smiling and pointing to the garbage container, that just in this moment is emptied after 2 weeks by the garbage guys. This game we had 5x. At least the people at the Verkehrsamt in Vienna know me by name and on the question why I do temporarily have no driving license it is “Alcohol?” me:”No, Housekeeper”.

The first question I have been asked over and over by my protagonists was “Does your house have WIFI?”, well I would maybe be more interested in how much is the salary instead, but the WIFI is for the fact that the entire community of invisible helpers is moving and cleaning and holding the Laptop in the other hand while trying to get the entire household under control just by one single hand. Once it happened to me that I passed by the laptop of my helper in   m y    kitchen and a friendly face smiled at me from the screen, saying “Good evening Mam, I hope you had a good trip and you are safely back from London”. Now it was clear I was a fully accepted member of a Philippine family clan, they will know where I go and they share all my worries and they discuss my life in great details, coming back and commenting it, most probably while I cook my coffee innocently and the nicely smiling lady from the screen is saying “Did she cut her hair recently, it looks bad”. This story can only be topped from the one, when my newly hired Nanny was left alone for the first time and after I returned home the antique commode was cut into hundreds of small pieces and just after I recovered from the shock not knowing what will await us inside she said – there was no wood in the house and it started to freeze outside – Her profile was “Nice girl from countryside, experienced in household and practique. 

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BlueSky Business Aviation News | The Cycle in Aviation

Optimists call it upstream. Pessimists say downstream. The fact is that aviation runs in 7 to 10 year cycles. It mirrors the state of the economy. But is it chicken or egg? Are the signs of recession seen in the extraordinary behaviour of future aircraft owners?

Different from the airline business, where it can be measured in the consumer behaviour of suppliers, and passengers voting with their feet, business aviation cannot identify any kind of warnings. But it also has to face out layers of the big waves of recession (coming on average six months before the economy is hit by it.) In the new member countries the upstream economy and the hype of the post communistic development does not make people believe that there will ever be a recession as bad as where two digit growth is endangered.

In Central Europe the phenomenon of the consequences of recession could be seen in Russia two years ago, when private aviation basically collapsed and the reaction to the recession was in line with the west. The first thing to be cautious with is the actual jet, the corporate jet for psychological reasons and the private jet for savings and rational decisions because it is necessary to be more present locally rather than to travel abroad, so limiting the damage with the effect of cutting costs.

Prague in the Czech Republic has the best startup economy-wise after the dry times of communistic regime; yet even here you can feel a special cautiousness and procrastination when it comes to making decisions. Interesting is that the macroeconomic fact of inner and outer speed is an issue here. CE countries have to cope with a fast development – the so called outer speed, whereas the inner speed is the dynamic with which the population has adjusted to change.

In this period of development and more and more adjustment the recession here has found a surprised and angry population that believed it has been through the hard times. It has to understand about repossession to banks and becoming homeless – that is the dark side of capitalism. Europe is suffering, yet it suffers in a different way from the USA. Never before has the gap been wider these days. Each continent is trying to put things together and find a way to face all the processes to go through another of these unwelcome cycles that has hit us badly within the last 25 years.

Blaming illegal (grey) charter and high pilot costs may not be the right way to sort out things, because it has always been the way that business aviation is monetary driven. It calls for high investments and fast decisions. These cycles have their own not understandable dynamic and it is important to see the situation from the right angle. For all of us – charter operators, brokers, owners, banks, financing institutions – it is important to hold the same opinion and be firm in the same boat. We have to wait until the high tide is over and then we can go back to normal conditions. In the meantime we have to cut costs and make non-populist decisions, none of us are immune.

But making compromises is hard to do when the cycle is downstream. Predictions are that the aviation market will go up from the end of the last year has proved to be very unstable. The bright spots are elsewhere – in China, India, Latin America, Asia is the honeypot, analysts say.

Here, the market will still be volatile and unstable and we need to get some momentum going before we can get back up again. The bottom of the cycle is always the same. Banks will ask for more securities in terms of aircraft financing, the residual values are not predictable and the owners will sell their slots for new aircraft and buy them back when times are better. It is the same in 2012 as it was in 2002 when September 11. But we have to be ready for new conditions and for sure there is a transition phase right now which will change in the next years, along with regulations, change in wages for flight crew, duty time etc. I strongly believe and I hope that I am right, that in the next upstream, business aviation, alongside the low cost carriers, will lead the race.

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THINK DIFFERENT

I do not want to discuss the book with you here, nor am I a fan of commenting any biographies. I can hardly be impressed and not bribed. When my beloved mum starts to tell me yesterdays evening movie in great details and she mixes the different characters before she corrects them again, to finally take out the last piece of excitement,……………………..I definitely become nuts.

But this time it was different. I read Steve Jobs, the man who showed 500.000 bad words when you put his name into Google, 5 years ago. Steve Jobs Biography which was written by Isaacson is something I was really impressed. Despite that you have to keep 300 different names in mind, it is not about this. Steve Jobs was a warrior, a lonely wolf, a desperado on his way to perfection. He was driven from Intuition and vision, and it was not easy to follow because he could see things that others were not able to see. And it is very difficult if you cannot see what others can see, because then it is just something that can never be the same thing. What exactly is love? How do you describe pain? Can you say how is it to have joy? For one it is like this for the other one it is like that. None of both is right nor wrong. And this was with Steve Jobs and his people. He wanted things different and simple. He denied many ideas for the fact that he felt it would not work.People left because they could not stand it, stand what? The pressure, or was it something else. They left even being offered incredible sums to stay. It was that incompatibility, the way you see things differently and cannot describe it, the way things are developing and moving and you don t know anything.  How many times did he stand against an entire board, knowing that his way would be right. I think he shares that vision with many people who started something and went through all that terrible moments when nobody believed them. When everybody was laughing and at the end you doubt yourself if it is right what you see ahead, or if this time your feeling is fooling you.

You know what is right, but you are afraid of the long and painful way to get there.

My blood was sometimes freezing for how much I could understand suddenly him and also the others. A lecture in self-reflextion, no doubt. I was puzzled.

Same like i feel and felt that something is not alright with aviation. Forget this market analysis and all the prognosis, the spreadsheets and the powerpoints. It is boring. We talk about the attitude. I mean what happened in the last 10 years with the passengers and with the crew? It would be easy to blame the crews and say – all bad, lazy. But it is not true. By the time that the security started to rule our industry we started to loose the optimism and the glamour from the job of flight attendant and pilot went away. I miss the purpose. I miss the love for the detail. I miss that we think different. We are not appreciating what we can do, flying. Instead we threat and we are threat and we think we are threatened and so on. And like in many other processes slowly but steady the development goes ahead and makes its way through all the phases of – no food for passengers, no water, please do not stand up, sorry can you speak not so loud I have my 2 hours where no one will talk to me (happened really on a german airline from miami when she was hiding behind the curtain). I admire the aircrews and I have a deep respect for them. What seems so easy and cool is annoying and boring after a while and during my book, I found out that when people are constantly trained for the worst, such as bomb attack, suspecting people learning how to put handcuffs on people who just coincidentally have dark hair, those people exposed to constant threat need to have some threat as for their inner self all the training would be useless. It sounds paradox but proved.

The pilots are locked in a 2 m2 box and the cabincrew is not willed to realize that the biggest threat is that 300 people are left alone for 45 minutes while the crew is in the kitchen. I have seen many airlines and more or less it is the same. The glass is always half empty for people in aviation this time and not half full. It would need a Steve Jobs in the air, to dare finally to stop all this vicious circle on both sides – passengers and crew. The purpose of flying is to enjoy that a human being can move from one point to another on this wonderful planet and enjoy a little wine and a nice food, and some of us need a little bit more care and attention because they simply are different. We need to think different to start saying : “Hey you beautiful flight attendant, stewardess, plane assistant, smile at me, because we fly above the clouds and it does not matter if I need a second sugar or not.” I love flying. It says that flying above the earth makes all the problems really small and this is why pilots become pilots, because the world looks like a big box of toys. 

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MESOPOTAMIA

….the land between Euphrat and Tigris, the land between two rivers, the land in between. Do you live in Mesopotamia? Well I do. I live in the old world (Vienna) and the new world (prague), I do live in Europe and I live in the USA, i live in this kind of business and in the other business. I am a tough businessperson (at least this is what the others say) and I am a kind of artist, with all the attributes, that an artist is equipped with. Mesopotamia is also when people cannot decide, or when they are in a transitionphase. Where to go? And what to do? Which side is better and will this decision stay good for a long time. For ever is an illusion. 

I learned in my life that it is important to not rush, but when the decision is done, to do it and to stick with it no matter what will happen and if the decision in turning out to be not optimal, then it is a lession that I had to go through and to understand why it came to that decision. 

It starts with little things, what to wear and what to choose. Whom to believe and where to go? Every day is full of decisions and this hell that my beloved friend S. is going through, I can immagine. S. is a notoric Notdecider. She is torn between red and blue, and John and Steve :-)) …………………….(even I would take Steve), I can hardly understand, because I am the Megadecider and there are these moments when I know that it was too fast and I cannot take it back, but then I have to stick with it, and this part is the lection, that I went through many times. But I stay with my personal quote that says :” You can never be halfpregnant”    ……………………How I love this sentence that is used in many occasions and I guess how many people hate me for it. But it is true, decide and go for it. This is for the big things and goes for the little things. How many times did we send an email with a stupid message and were not sure to press the SEND button, and once you press it you feel like, no no no no. But maybe the person on the other side feels the same when your name pops up and the excitment is the same, in good and bad. There are many people in my telefonregister who I feel like no no no no, when his or her number is poping up. And it happened that a new number was calling in and I did not recognize it and my voice was fresh and nice and innocent (what I am when the relation is young and fresh :-)) and it was the man I delete mentally and really from my life and phonebook.

You can compare it with the opera. Your voice goes from sopran to mezzosopran to Bass and your face is changing from Ciderella to Werwolf. The conversation goes like “Hello, who is speaking?”……..truiliiii to “whoOOOO?”, realizing that you were friendly to someone you did not want to be, to “say your name again” (to gain time and think how to do the next nasty step) to  (this is my favourite) “Can you spell it”…………………………….NOw this person is delete, really, at least from his side. 

Phone calls are bad for interpersonal relations, in business and private, that is what I read recently. It does not allow the human being to read the emotions and the body language, which is crucial for us to make a real and good assumption over the situation. The email and phone , whereas the phone does at least allow the sound of the voice, but still there is too much space to interpret and it leads to many misunderstandings and because of this too many unnecessary steps on both sides are take for nothing. The communication in important matters is still an all over communication, and it requires personal contact, gesture, body language, and everything that we tried to ignore over the evolution. But this is what makes business travelling important and never stopping. The big deals are done personally only. 

Here to understand what I mean

The man in the baloon

A man in a hot air balloon is lost. He sees a man on the ground and reduces height to speak to him.

“Excuse me, can you tell me where I am?”

“You’re in a hot air balloon hovering thirty feet above this field,” comes the reply.

“You must work in Information Technology,” says the balloonist.

“I do,” says the man, “How did you know?”

“Well,” says the balloonist, “Everything you told me is technically correct, but it’s no use to anyone.”

“You must be in business,” says the man.

“I am,” says the balloonist, “How did you know?”

“Well,” says the man, “You don’t know where you are, you don’t know where you’re going, but you expect me to be able to help. You’re in the same position you were before we met, but now it’s my fault.”

source www.businessballs.com, 12.1.2012

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P is for Pilot, S is for Shopping

The new year started smoothly. The year of the dragon is in front of our doors, the year of the easy and light, the air, the flying. The dragon is the only symbol in the chinese horoscopes that is not an existing animal, it is a dreamcreature, a flying dreamcreature and brings fresh air to our lives. So it is the year of aviation, at least it is the year we all hope it will be the year of aviation.

My days in the USA are easy, coffee, thinking, beach and nothing, oh that is not true. Reading Steve Jobs Biographíe, which is involving thousands of names. So I distract myself with a little bit TV and I chose 1 chanel of my 853 where a pilot is talking to children. No wrong, the children ask him and he is responding. How does he feel? Does he have fear? How high did he ever fly? Did he ever crash? and he is this kind of brave guy who is completely professional and calm, but then a little boy asked him :”What can make you really shocked and anxious?” ………….The clean cut guy looked to the floor and lifted his head with a really worried expression on his face “Shopping, shopping with my wife” he said.

I knew it, for sure he is one of those victims of the Therapy center in Sawgrass Mill. For those who do not know SAWGRASS MILL – it is located in Florida and is an outlet center that contains more than 500 shops. There are just few seats, no bars and no menparadise beside childrens paradise – so no rest, the streets inside are called avenue and when you take a trolley and put in one box for shoes it seems that your Oestrogen competitors look at you like ” oh, you just arrived, poor thing”. This is not what want. Buy one and get 3 for free. It is the ultimatif paradise for women and it is THE REAL HELL  for the men. I have never ever seen so many desperate and depressif men strolling around so helplessly. And most of them are with their little children like little siblings and when you pass them you hear million and million times the question “where is mummy?”…….”Did you see mum?”

In their eyes is written……….. Please help, but they follow because they have to watch their creditcards.

Hells gates are open.

All that shops that offer wrong nails, wronghair, lipstick that blows up your lips, wrong boops and wrong whatever. Poor guys they are really facing the ultimatif desaster, the apocalypse, their accounts are shrinking while their illusion about the female beauty is diminishing.

Nothing can save them, absolutely nothing, there is even a valet service that brings your car temporarily to load part of the stuff to have space for new shopping –  and this is your chance girls. Now and here, just act smartly.

Your guy does not come home in time or forgets your birthday, there is one really therapywith 100% cure for it and it is not even painful for us women. Just use the expression and make a serious face “What about going to SAWGRASS MILL?” we take the valet parking, in case there is no space and we spend the whole day there. VOILA.

This is them moment I must admit, that I have a mercy with you guys, sorry guys we really need you and all that nails and hair and clothes we finally do for you, at least we want you to believe it. :-)))

  No object is so beautiful that, under certain conditions, it will not look ugly. Dear Oscar Wilde, you are soo true.

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