Welcome to the Faster Fluency Conversation Club Podcast: the business English podcast that gets you conversation-ready.
In today’s episode, you’ll hear Christina and Matthew talk about success--and what it means to them.
What does success look like when you’re at work? Do successful employees show up at 9:00 AM and work until 5:00? Does success mean earning as much money as possible? Or something else?
To find out what Matthew and Christina think of success…
Listen to the podcast!
And to share what you think, tell what success means to you in the comments--or join us for a conversation.
Here's the link to the transcript!
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How do you define success? In this episode of our Faster Fluency Conversation Club podcast, I'm talking with Matthew, who is our coach from New York, but now based in Vietnam. And we're talking about, you know, how we have changed our definition of success maybe as a society and between generations, for example, generation Z and baby boomers, and what kind of conflict, tension, maybe, um, strategies for adapting how that influences how we work in the workplace and how we define success. Let's go. All right, Matthew, how are you doing today?
I'm doing wonderful. How are you?
Doing well, doing well. Um, right, so today we are talking about changing your mindset around success. I think this is a really interesting topic, um, because I don't know, I feel like we have seen a shift in how we define success and like if I think back, you know, when we were kids in the US in the eighties and there was this show called like Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous <laugh>. Yeah. And you could see like, you know, how successful other people were because they had like five yachts and three mansions and private jets and um, things like that. And I feel like nowadays that's not necessarily what the, the way that people are defining success. Um, I don't know what, how, how do you feel about that?
Yeah, I think a lot of, uh, young people today, sorry, I've got a bit of a sore throat. Um, yeah. A lot of young people today define that as kind of a gluttony of riches, if you will. Like, that's excess not success. Um, right. Yeah. I think there has been a shift in attitude, um, between generations, uh, and then also from Covid. People are like, wait a minute, what am I doing? I'm in the rat race, but why? For what, what's the, what's the end goal? What do I get here? Um, so Right. I think, I think we do see a shift no for everybody, but just generally speaking.
Yeah. Right. Yeah. No, no, I agree. And, and it's interesting that you talked about like, why am I here? Because in, um, in the article for the members of the Faster Fluency Conversation Club, uh, the interview with the C e O of V M O, they talked about, um, you know, uh, how highly successful Gen Zers are bringing different tactics into their workplaces. And one of those things was, um, the why, you know, like this idea of why am I here? Why am I doing this job? Um, what's the, the purpose or the mission? And then like inside the workplace for, you know, I guess managers and things like that ex not just saying to your, your employees, Hey, do this thing, but also saying, do this thing and here's why it's important, so that they can understand, you know, the why behind, I guess, the company, but also the why behind their day-to-day work.
Right. I think that's really important. Like, you know, obviously a lot of our listeners are probably not Gen Zers, right. But it's important to understand the shift in mindset if you are be between younger people that you might be hiring, right. And joining the workforce and mm-hmm. <affirmative> knowing what's important to them because, uh, as a manager, you have to know how to manage your people. Um, and yeah, it's, um, I think it's something you, you do see even among, you know, managers today and lots of people leaving the workforce because there's not more of a work-life balance or even having the flexibility. That's another thing they, they mentioned in an article is like, right, I can get my work done, but it doesn't need to be from nine to five every day. I can, right. Maybe I want the morning off and I'll work off to seven or eight, or whatever that is. Right. So yeah.
That flexibility is important too.
Yeah, exactly. I think it's that that flexibility and it's, it's maybe this idea of, you know, for managers, um, not to focus on like, I need this person to be present so that I feel reassured that they're doing their work, but it's more of like, say like, okay, I trust my employees. Um, we're focused on the results and the outcome, and so it's more like, you know, yeah, I I trust you to work from home or from wherever you want to work, as long as the work is getting done and the team is, you know, the teamwork is running smoothly. Um, but having that flexibility and like, I think in the article, I think that they mentioned as well that, um, job candidates have actually turned down, um, offers for employment because there was not that flexibility and they, they said, you know, no, this is really important. I don't wanna spend, you know, two to three hours of my life every day commuting, um, so that I can come and sit in an office so that you can see that I'm in front of my computer. Because you need to see that to feel like I'm doing my job when in reality I could be on Facebook or LinkedIn or something. Um,
Because, you know, uh, the focus should be on the end result and not Okay. Somebody every Sunday that one person's here at 9:00 AM every day, so that makes them the best employee ever in the world, or Right. Oh, they, they get, yeah, that same employee gets here at 8:30 AM and leaves at 7:00 PM they must be the best employee in the world Yeah. When employee B might do the same amount of work in exactly half time. Exactly. It's a shift and like also valuing like, what's it one, what's important to people? Right. And two, like, well, let's look at what, how do people produce? Mm. Cause some may be more productive at home, some Right. That office structure than nine to five structure, and some may like the hybrid. So you know, that all over flexibility, all of that. Yeah. Like you need that flexibility and you know, if you're a c e O manager in HR funding that, that's what today's graduates are looking for. Yeah. Get you better talent.
Yeah, exactly. You're going to attract the, the better talent, you're going to keep the better talent, because recruiting people is, uh, a long and expensive process. Um, and it's just, I think going to, you know, I think in, in the article they mentioned that these things, um, it's not like the Gen Zers are say like, you know, a lot of times we feel like we see these articles about, oh, they're being selfish and lazy and things like that, and they, they're saying, no, these are actually tactics and ideas which actually improve the workplace overall. Yes. You have to think through like, how do we put that in place and how do we make it work for our team? Um, but you, you kind of do that work and communicate and see how to make it better. But once you can maybe work through that transition, your workplace becomes like a more, you know, sustainable workplace, your teams, they work better, they trust each other, um, and there's just better relationships overall.
So I think as a really interesting article, and I think that it's, um, a good thing that we're redefining success, not in terms of how much money do I make and how much can I buy with it. Um, of course, money is, is important for, for living and secure financial security and whatnot, but money, it's almost like, it's not the end, you know, the, the end and the goal in and of itself. It's, it's just a way of facilitating maybe a certain lifestyle, but that lifestyle, I think today's successful lifestyle is more about having time for the things that matter and not about having stuff basically.
Well, and we see it in the marketplace as well. A lot of companies today they have, oh, we support the environment, or Oh, right, we're vegan friendly or this social cause. So a lot of businesses aren't even about like, oh, we gotta maximize profit number one. It's like, well, profit's important. Yeah. We need to be able to keep the business running. Yeah. But why is the consumer choosing you over this company? And something to keep in mind.
Yeah. No, exactly right. Okay. No, very interesting conversation. Um, all right, well thank you very much Matthew, and I hope that your throat starts feeling better soon.
Thank you. Lots of tea. Thank you so much,
<laugh>. Right. Take care. All right.
Take care. Bye-Bye.