Blog list ...

Improve meeting efficiency

To attend or to not attend!

If you have felt like you have spent half your life in meetings, you are not alone! According to Forbes 45.1 hours is the average amount of hours worked by office workers according to their 2017 study. It may also surprise you to hear that up to 50% of your time depending on your role can be spent in meetings!

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Corporate Leadership

'Corporate Leadership Training Market is Likely to Grow Due to Rising Demand For Cegos, Dale Carnegie Training,Franklin Covey, Skillsoft, Achieve Forum, American Management Association, BTS by 2019-2024.' - Market Research Updates, May 2019.

 A leadership position in a corporate bears heavy responsibility. There is also often a surprising level of lack of confidence. Many studies discuss the impact of ‘Imposter Syndrome’ at executive level, one report by the Independent claiming that millennials also suffer from the syndrome. A fascinating piece of research by TEC  indicates that many executives worldwide have an internal crisis of confidence, they can’t actually believe that they come across as credible. There is an element of genuine surprise at ‘how did I come to be here?’, and a subsequent internal build-up of stress in case they get ‘found out’.

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Work life balance

“An estimated 137 million working days were lost due to sickness or injury in the UK in 2016, according to a new report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). This was equivalent to 4.3 days per worker, the lowest recorded rate since the series began in 1993, when the number was 7.2 days per worker.”

Commenting on the findings of the report, ONS statistician Brendan Freeman said: 

“Since 2003, there has been a fairly steady decline in the number of working days lost to sickness, especially during the economic downturn. In recent years, there has been a small rise in the number of days lost, but due to an increasing number of people entering the workforce, the rate per worker and overall sickness absence rate have stayed largely flat.”

The story we are familiar with is of an increasingly tense workplace which demands more of us. It is a good thing to question assumptions sometimes, and the above quote is fascinatingly challenging, and suggests it is possible that things are getting better not worse.  

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Applying sports psychology in business

"Sports psychology is now rated as the most important prerequisite to medalling. It is a change that has taken place over the last five years," (Ian Maynard, professor of sports psychology & director of the Centre for Sport and Exercise Science at Sheffield Hallam University, 2006).

Some of the techniques taught within sports psychology seem to have a lot of potential to help ensure success in business. For example, Jack J. Lesyk, Ph.D. offers 9 mental skills which successful athletes use, skills which can be applied in everyday work life. The skills are:

  1. Choose and maintain a positive attitude.
  2. Maintain a high level of self-motivation.
  3. Set high, realistic goals.
  4. Deal effectively with people.
  5. Use positive self-talk.
  6. Use positive mental imagery.
  7. Manage anxiety effectively.
  8. Manage their emotions effectively.
  9. Maintain concentration.
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Workspace and productivity

How does the physical work environment affect employees?

The environment around us has a major impact on our happiness and is an important factor as we consider how to motivate staff to increase productivity. For example, a fascinating study recorded by Science Direct revealed how children perform around 16% better when the environment suits learning. The three key components appear to be:

  1. Naturalness: light, sound, temperature, air quality and links to nature. 
  2. Individualisation: ownership, flexibility and connection.
  3. Stimulation (appropriate level of): complexity and colour.
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Managing organisational change

 All change!

When an organisation must repeatedly change it becomes fatigued, but with training and insight for key staff it becomes easier than the traditional work harder mentality change framework that many choose to adopt.

Delivering successful change is one of the most pressing issues facing businesses today. How to win new customers, changing market dynamics, changing competition, changing product lines, new employees, and not to mention legislation!

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Why is stage presence important?

  ‘The only limit to your impact is your imagination and your commitment.' 

Tony Robbins

It is pretty simple to understand, but challenging to apply: to maximise your personal impact at work, you need to devise ways to maximise your stage presence.

In the business world, of course we do not think about 'stage presence' very much. There is too much to be getting on with, meetings, presentations, projects, client visits, reports, work winning, staff management, budgeting, the list is endless. Why on earth should we think in terms of the actor's world of stage presence?

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How to negotiate a deal

Winning for the future

Negotiation has had a bad press, particularly since Donald Trump said he was good at it. And on the other side of the Atlantic the Brexit negotiations have proven to be a hugely expensive political complexity finding a deal almost impossible to reach. Perhaps the time has come to reinvent ‘negotiation skills’.

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How to delegate as a leader...

"Don't be a bottleneck. If a matter is not a decision for the President or you, delegate it."  -Donald Rumsfeld, former Secretary of Defense

How can we safely delegate decisions? Surely there is a massive risk if we ‘let go’ close our eyes and just see what happens? Isn’t it safe to stick to task delegation?

 It is easy to delegate tasks. All you need is an instruction sheet. The more complex the task, the longer the sheet.

 It is much tougher to delegate decisions.

 A great manager gets their people making decisions. Not only that but making great decisions. When we can do that, we have made the holy grail of management. We can duplicate our own skills in others leaving us free to move onto greater things. The main reason for lack of promotion is commonly described as “can’t do without”. It’s no good being needed, if we are needed, we can’t move on. Delegating tasks keeps us needed. Delegating decisions gives us freedom.

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