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How to Manage Introverts in the Workplace

How to Manage Introverts in the Workplace

The workplace is a mix of different personalities, to which a manager must understand the best way to manage introverts and extroverts. An introvert is an individual who tends to lean on the quiet and reserved end. An extrovert, on the other end, is a socially outgoing person. Most introverts, just like extroverts, hold steady jobs. An important way to ensure their needs are met in the workplace include understanding different personality types and working to include both in performance assessments. If you are a manager or supervisor, the following tips offer insights on how to manage introverts in the workplace. 1. Evaluate your method of management Do you know what kind of manager you are? Perhaps your style of management resonates more with extroverts, albeit unconsciously. Most managers tend to relate easily with the outgoing group, making the shy and quiet group less likely to feel included. Recognize your method of management, and if it seems to leave the introverts out, it may be time to re-evaluate yourself. It is as easy to manage introverts as it is with extroverts, once you identify their personality types. 2. Incorporate written communication Most introverts are likely to communicate better in writing as compared to making speeches during meetings. They are likely to need time to organize their thoughts, expertly, and in time. Communicating with them via text or email makes it easier to collect their thoughts on various topics. It reduces the need to respond immediately, which enables them to relay the ideas they have with no pressure. 3. Motivate them to participate in discussions It goes without saying that shy people are unlikely to voice their opinions in groups. This means that to effectively manage introverts, it is essential to encourage them to give ideas through soft nudges during meetings or one-on-one sessions. Most introverts are highly thoughtful people and with in-depth knowledge of various topics. This is due to the fact that while extroverts share opinions, introverts are likely to collect thoughts from various research places to stay informed. 4. Recognize their strengths and speak for them Introverts are more likely to suffer from imposter syndrome as compared to extroverts. They will not self promote themselves, however good they are at their work. It is important as a manager to identify these employees and occasionally speak up for them. Of course, this should not mean actually having to speak for them. As a manager, speaking for introverts includes congratulating them on a good job, promoting their ideas in meetings, or rewarding their work with various work incentives and motivators. 5. Prioritize team building activities Everyone has a place of comfort. This means that introverts have situations they feel most free to participate in. To efficiently manage introverts then, a manager or supervisor can incorporate team building activities, pairing the introverts with the individuals they feel better related to. This way, they are likely to participate and provide avenues to open up to new ideas. Despite their love of solitude, introverts are likely to be daring in the right team set-ups. Additionally, a manager or supervisor can assist introverts through personal follow-ups to understand their train of thought. When introverts feel included in the workplace, they gradually tend to flourish. Introverts tend to make the best leaders when nurtured well and with proper guidance and direction. As the workplace changes, identifying different personality traits goes a long way in ensuring everyone's needs is catered for. The post How to Manage Introverts in the Workplace appeared first on BrighterMonday Kenya.

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7 Tips to Help Maintain Your Used Car In Mint Condition

7 Tips to Help Maintain Your Used Car In Mint Condition

When you decide to buy a car, you may have to cut down on your expenses to save money for your car purchase. In some instances, you may have to apply for a huge car loan. Neither of these decisions is easy but if you need a car, you sacrifice and buy one.   However, the cost of maintaining a car is also quite high. You do not want to drive around with worn-out tires or a car that emits black exhaust smoke. Not only is this not safe for you but also for other road users.   You need to treat your car the way you treat yourself. Otherwise, it will not serve you well. A used car can be very fragile. Since you are not the first owner, you can never be too sure about its underlying issues.   Therefore when you buy a second-hand car, have a skilled mechanic look at it before you start using it. Your mechanic will guide you on simple DIY maintenance tips that can also help you maintain your car in great shape.   We have listed below a couple of tips you can use to maintain your car   1. Check the fluids frequently The engine is the heart of your car. If the engine has an issue, you won’t be able to drive the car. One of the most important things to check under your car’s hood is the engine oil. Does it need changing or topping up? If so, do it urgently.   When the car’s engine oil is low, lubrication of essential engine components stops. This causes clunking and grounding sounds and can lead to breakage of the rods. This will ultimately cost you a lot of money to repair. You also need to check on the transmission fluid, brake fluids and engine coolant.   2. Check the brakes, safety belts and car's batteries After your engine, the braking system is probably the most crucial part of your car. Your safety heavily relies on your car’s ability to brake successfully. Be on the lookout for squawking sounds whenever you are braking and alert your mechanic. This could be a sign of worn-out brake pads or an even bigger issue.   As we are still looking at your safety, what's the condition of the safety belts? Do they function properly? Do all the seats have belts? If not, make an appointment to purchase good quality safety belts for your car and have them properly fitted by a professional. Remember, not wearing a safety belt is not only a traffic offence but also risky.   Next, take a close look at the battery. Does your car take long to start or fails to start at all? Does your battery have corrosion build up? When was the last time you checked the battery fluid? A completely dead battery should be replaced, otherwise, your car won’t move at all.   If it's still functional, clean the battery terminal using anti-corrosion fluids, charge it and refill the fluids. This will prevent any further damage and save you from having to buy a new one.   3. Check the warning lights indicators Cars come fitted with high tech sensory warning systems. When something is wrong with your car, your car will give you a sign. However, you may miss the warning sign if you do not know the meaning. Familiarise yourself with the different warning lights on your dashboard and be quick to inform your mechanic if something is a miss.   For instance, if the fuel light is on, it could mean you are running low on fuel and need a refill. On the other hand, it could mean that your fuel tank is leaking. The brake lights could mean that the parking brakes are engaged or that the braking fluid is low. Therefore, the warning lights are important for ensuring you are always safe. 4. Take care of the car’s exterior and interior Before someone enters your car, they will look at the exterior. Does the exterior of your car look appealing? Is the paint chipped? Are the tyres worn out? What about the windscreen, is it cracked? Are the headlights missing or are they dim?   If you answered yes to anything, it's time to have your car professionally detailed. Have it repainted, cleaned and fitted with better tyres. How your car looks reflects on you too and you want to maintain a good image.   Look around inside your car. If you still have mud from last week, food crumbs and it smells musky, clean it. Have every nook and corner scrubbed including the car’s underbelly. Besides, detailing your car frequently also improves your car's resale value as it appears well taken care of.   5. Check the window’s functionality When buying a car, you may be too excited to notice things like the windows. However, you need to find out if they function properly. Do they easily roll up and down? Are they damaged or cracked? If anything is off, have it fixed. It will not be funny when your window jams and it's raining.   6. Check if your car tyres are the right size and in good condition Every car comes with a tyre inflation guide provided by the manufacturer. The guide is to ensure you do not drive around with deflated tyres. Deflated tyres can cause rim damage while over-inflated tyres can cause a tyre burst.   Whenever you visit the fueling station, check the tyre’s pressure and adjust them accordingly. Check the extent of the wear and tear of the tyres. If the tyres have no treads anymore, replace them with new ones. The treads help your car maintain a good grip on the road and prevent sliding especially during the rainy season. 7. Check your car's exhaust system Your car’s exhaust system usually emits gases as a result of engine combustion. The colour of the smoke from the system can be an indicator of the condition of your engine. If the colour is black or navy blue, it may be a cause for alarm. Contact a mechanic immediately. A healthy car emits light or thin white exhaust smoke. Usually, this is just condensed water that may have accumulated in the exhaust pipe.   Summary   A well-maintained car hardly breaks down thus reducing trips to the mechanic. Always be on the lookout for warning signs of a breakdown. Nub them before they get worse. A well-maintained car can easily be re-sold in future. Therefore you should treat your car as an investment you may want to sell in the future. The post 7 Tips to Help Maintain Your Used Car In Mint Condition appeared first on Cheki Kenya.
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10 Common First Time Homebuyer Mistakes to Avoid

10 Common First Time Homebuyer Mistakes to Avoid

The prospect of buying your first home can be both exciting and scary. Understandably— it is one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll make. Due to lack of knowledge, most first time homebuyers make mistakes that cause them to relocate after a short while and the hustle cost of buying a new home all over again. Luckily, with research beforehand, you can avoid these pitfalls. Let's discuss the ten common home-buying mistakes and solutions to equip you for a smooth-sailing experience. Not having clarity on your financial status Overlooking first-time homebuyer programs Shopping for a home before a mortgage Getting a single mortgage quotation Overlooking the neighbourhood Getting into more debt before loan approval Making decisions based on emotions Waiting for the perfect home Skipping home inspection Underestimating the cost of homeownership 1. Being Unclear of Your Current Financial Status You need to understand every little detail of your expenses and savings, to work out how much is available for buying a home.  Otherwise, you commit to purchasing a home beyond your budget. This can lead to foreclosure due to your inability to settle monthly payments. You will also lack money to cover any emergency expenses that come up.  Solution: Have a clear picture of your monthly expenses to assess how much money you can comfortably pay towards a mortgage for a home. Remember to also factor in all your variable outgoing costs like grocery shopping and your monthly saving goals.  As a rule of thumb, your monthly mortgage payments should not be more than 28% of your gross income. This percentage should, however, be lower if you have other debts.  2. Not Looking for First-time Homebuyer Programs There are government programs tailored towards helping low and middle-income earners to buy homes. These can come in the form of a savings scheme where you make monthly contributions towards purchasing a project that is partly funded by the government. Others are subsidised housing development projects where, for instance, a four-bedroom house in Athi-river goes for Kshs 8.85M as opposed to the standard Kshs 15M-20M.  Solution: Look out for state-sponsored options available via your County Government website. An example is the Boma Yangu Project which is an initiative by the Kenyan Government under the “Big Four Agenda” to ensure that Kenyans have access to decent and affordable housing, despite having lower earnings. 3. Shopping for a Home Before a Mortgage House hunting is more fun than evaluating your financial status. It's not a surprise that it's the first thing you’d want to do. Shopping beforehand makes you run the risk of finding a home that you love but cannot afford. This might lead you to buy a home and get into debt. Alternatively, you could be discouraged due to your inability to afford it.  Solution: Focus on your finances first. Have enough for a down payment and closing costs then get a pre-approval letter before seriously shopping for a house.  You can, in the meantime, have a list of what you are looking for in a home. What are the must-haves and deal breakers? This will come in handy once your loan is approved and can now shop for property within the right price range. 4. Getting Just One Mortgage Quote Shopping for a mortgage is like shopping for the house itself: it’s wise to compare several options. Different mortgage providers charge varying fees, like closing costs and loan processing fees. No two lenders are the same. Lack of comparison could have you losing on a better deal.  Additionally, note that your mortgage expenses do not stop at a down payment and monthly repayments. Your financial provider charges several fees to finalise your mortgage processing. These could be around 3-5% of your total purchase price and include:  Stamp duty fee: between 2-4% of the value of your property.  Loan processing fee: approximately 1% of your purchase price. Legal fees: between 1-2% with a minimum fee of Kshs 35,000. Valuation fees: between 1-2% of the purchase price. Solution: Apply for loans with different providers to get a holistic picture into the rates and costs. You can start by visiting several mortgage providers’ websites for an overview of their charges and narrow down to four that you can engage. Most have mortgage calculators such as:  Absa calculator  NIC calculator Standard Chartered You can use the different quotations to negotiate for a lower interest rate as long as it's within the Central Bank of Kenya approved rate of 12-14%.  Afterwards, work out the closing costs for your purchase with the chosen mortgage provider and add them to your budget to assess your true financial position.  5. Fixating on the House Over the Neighbourhood Perfect property is much more than the house itself. You don’t want to be in a home that matches all your needs but has surroundings that aren’t ideal. Imagine having to drive over an hour to get to a good hospital. Or your kids (current or future) having a long commute to school every morning. Solution: Hire an estate agent to help you with the neighbourhood research before settling on a home. They have a vast knowledge of the utilities, schools, zoning regulations and other critical information that will be helpful in deciding whether a neighbourhood is a good fit for you or not.  Also, take various strolls and visit the neighbourhood on your own at different times of the day. This would be a good time to strike a conversation with your potential neighbours and ask any questions, for example how frequent lights go out and the neighbourhood safety.  6. Depleting Your Credit Before Final Loan Approval When applying for financing, your mortgage provider first pre-qualifies you for a loan. This means that they give you an estimate of how much they will lend you based on the information you provided on your finances.  The next step is pre-approval. They verify the information provided and perform the credit checks. If satisfied, you get a pre-approval letter which is an offer (but not a commitment) to lend you a specific amount of money. If your financial position changes, they are well within their right to cancel the transaction within a period of 90 days after pre-approval.  Solution: Do not make large purchases or do anything that will deplete your financial status, e.g. getting into more debt before you get an approval confirmation from your mortgage provider.  You can use the pre-approval letter to start negotiating for lower prices with a potential seller as this gives you a competitive edge. It shows the seller that you are serious; you can secure a mortgage and are more likely to complete the purchase of the home.  7. Making Decisions Based on Emotions Buying your first home is an important step. This is where you will make lasting memories with your family. You might get attached and make decisions based on emotions.  However, remember this is one of the largest financial investments and recovering from financial mistakes could take a significant amount of time. A seller’s agent is well aware of the situation. Their aim is to sell for the highest price possible- and might tap into your emotions to serve their client’s best interest.  Emotional decisions can make you end up buying a home that is way above your budget.  Solution: Have a strict budget for your home and stick to it. Do not get attached to a home that has not yet been transferred to you.  Using an estate agent to represent your interest during the process will also help keep you in check. Discuss your ideal home and what you can afford beforehand and your agent will take care of getting a home that matches your needs matched against your finances.  8. Waiting for the Perfect Home We understand. You are looking for a home that you will live in for a long time if not forever—so you want one that is perfect. However, expecting to find a home that ticks all your boxes can be unrealistic.  Waiting for a perfect home could mean passing up good homes in a great location and great pricing. You will also be limiting your options, which could make the buying process longer than necessary.  As the Kenyan real estate market is also cyclical, you risk waiting until interest rates go higher, or home prices rise.  Solution: Have a list of your must-haves, deal-breakers and compromises. This will help you to be flexible and keep an open mind. Remember that you also can upgrade your home later.  You can get a home that matches most of your needs and make improvements later when you are more comfortable financially.  9. Skipping Home Inspection As a home inspection is not mandatory for your mortgage application, you might be tempted to skip this, being an additional expense. However, it is a crucial step, especially if you are buying a pre-owned home.  A home inspection protects you from buying a home that is not worth the asking price or one with structural issues.  Solution: Hire a professional inspector to pick out faults that you are not able to find, e.g. insulation, plumbing and ventilation issues.  Make sure to attend the home inspection so that you familiarise yourself with what needs to be attended to. You can have the seller do repairs, negotiate for a lower price or altogether decide to move on to a new property. 10. Underestimating the Costs of Homeownership Since you may be moving from a rental or living with family to owning a home, your usual costs could go higher. Additionally, there could be costs that were previously taken care of by your landlord or parents. These include: Higher utility bills Property taxes Homeowners insurance Homeowners association fee Equipment maintenance and repair Outdoor maintenance (e.g. a backyard) Additional furniture to fill more space Solution: Work with an estate agent who specialises in the neighbourhood. He/she will have information on property taxes, insurance estimate cost and homeowners association requirements.  When buying a pre-owned home, it's also wise to ask the seller to give you their utility bills for the last year. This will help you estimate how much it will cost when you move in.  To Conclude Now that you know what mistakes to avoid, here is a detailed guide to walk you through each step of buying your home. Getting buyer's remorse does not have to be part of your journey as a first time home buyer. Be ready to take up the commitment, have a clear understanding of the process and be in a good financial position.  The post 10 Common First Time Homebuyer Mistakes to Avoid appeared first on BuyRentKenya.
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