Posted in Bite size learning, Change management, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership

Am I ready to be coached…?

Will you benefit from working with a coach do you understand what you need to do in order to be ready? Clients come to me sometimes as they have identified their own readiness and the other route is from their leadership group. My role as the coach is to manage their expectations and get them ready for the experience.

Coaching can help you achieve a higher performance and greater personal satisfaction at work. You may be aware that you need to make changes in behaviour and mindset in order to advance in your career. To gain the benefit of coaching you must fully engage in the process, this will mean an investment of time and effort. The work happens between the coaching sessions not necessarily in them.

How can we determine whether some-one is “match fit” ready for coaching:-

  • Discomfort – Coaching is all about embracing new ways of perceiving and acting. In making the changes you will feel fear and anxiety, leading to new realisations and realities. Being able to endure these periods of discomfort will help you grow.
  • Experimentation – Once you have agreed to that feeling or level of discomfort you can begin experimenting with new behaviours. This will possibly involve taking risks and being prepared for things not to go right initially. Trying out new ideas and exploring new options will mean having an open mind.
  • Emotional responses – Behaviour is not rational, as there is always an emotion behind it. Working with a coach is about being prepared to talk about the emotional responses anger, fear, pride and happiness, by sharing them and putting them into context can you identify what you want to change.
  • Responsibility – Knowing that you can shape your future and working with a coach to grab a hold of it, and take control and responsibility. Accepting you are accountable for your progress.
  • Forgiveness – Being ready to channel your energy into your current or future progress. A coach cannot work with a victim and cannot solve the past.
  • Discipline – Once you have identified new behaviours and new ways of working, being disciplined that you stick to your new ways. Having a coach as an accountability partner will help, however you have to be ready to self regulate yourself.
  • Support – Are you ready for others to support you not just the coach? Once you begin a coaching journey you have to be ready to listen with curiosity and be prepared for constructive feedback from everyone around you.

If you think you are ready to be coached, then get in touch bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Decision Making, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Problem solving

Critical Thinking…

The definition of critical thinking is to deliberately analyse information. By making it an intent we can make better decisions and have a better judgement of a situation.

We need to take time to step back and analyse a situation be the Judge and the Jury. By asking the right questions we need to evaluate arguments and evidence. Ironically we need to be open minded and not critical, to be open to being creative, reflective and adaptable.

Critical thinking in essence is about filtering and discovering. We must have a clear mind and not be influenced by a higher order of thinking.

Think about situations that require you to apply critical thinking:-

  • Interview preparation
  • Buying a house
  • Choosing a school/college or University
  • Time management

We have to be rigorous in our wish to apply critical thinking we have start with looking at scepticism (why are we doubting the truth) and we have to take a more neutral stance and be objective “fresh eyes”.

The starting point is “What do I know?” and “How do I know this?” this can dispel any deep routed opinions of others or even yourself.

In 1968 Dick Fosbury won the gold medal for the high jump in the Olympics, it is one of the best examples of critical thinking. Up until 1968 high jumpers believed that you had to land on your feet. Fosbury decided to ask the question “How else could I get over the bar?”. By throwing himself head first over the bar he lowered his centre of gravity and reduced his chances of hitting the bar. We are now all familiar with the Fosbury Flop but it all started by applying critical thinking.

Tom Chatfield wrote a book on Critical Thinking and created the 10 commandments of how to do it:-

  1. Slow down – take time to understand what you know already
  2. Conserve mental energy – stay focused (don’t have anything else on the go at the time)
  3. If in doubt wait – only get back to some-one until you are sure
  4. Know your limits – don’t pretend to know what you don’t know (read more and find out more)
  5. Beware of costs – don’t hold on to an idea, just because you have invested time and money
  6. Be strategic – judge the strategy not just short term results
  7. Look to long term – you might have a success then fail however the right way is the mean
  8. Seek out diverse opinion – re-examine
  9. Look beyond a frame of reference
  10. Is their a choice outside the frame

Critical thinking is about a better way of looking at the world. Please do get in touch if you would like nuggets to deliver a workshop bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Problem solving, training

Inside the box…

The expression think outside the box is the soundbite we all use to think creatively. It often scares the logical thinkers as the randomness of having no stucture or parameters and literally no box can be very intimidating.

There is an alternative “Inside the box” a book by Drew Boyd and Jacob Goldenberg, they give a framework for how you can do creativity with what you have. New ideas are normally a combination of old ideas and the key is to how sort what you have.

Boyd and Goldenberg give three techniques:-

  1. Divide and rearrange
  2. Subtract and replace
  3. Multiply and revise

Divide and rearrange is to look at the components you have and literally divide and rearrange. One of the best examples of this is lego, the bricks are the physical parts that once divided up or rearranged can create many different things. The same principle can be applied with a service, write all the stages of the process on post-its and then stand back and decide whether you can divide or rearrange any of the parts.

This is the journey of promoting and selling a workshop – lets divide and rearrange a few elements. No reason why the Blog cannot move to the end as key learnings for the delegates.

The second idea from the book is Subtract and replace, the best example of this is Apple with the iPod Touch. Initially they did away with buttons and replaced with a wheel. They also went to a further stage and took away the screen.

With the workshop journey, no-one enjoys a death by PowerPoint, how many slides can be replaced with discussion or exercises even though it is an online workshop.

The third idea of Inside the box is Multiply and revise. The example is back in 1971 Gillette introduced the razor with two blades, they did not just double the blades they made the angle different a revision that led to a smoother shave. With the journey of the workshop I need to double the times that I post the workshop to social media with a revision of how I promote it, what is the key angle.

Try and use the technique on a service or a product to see if you can look at it differently, it compliments process mapping technique perfectly.

Please do get in touch for further ideas and for a workshop on creativity or process mapping bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Leadership, Management, motivation, Relationships, training

It’s good to share, talk and listen…

Without contriving and formalising how can you encourage your team members to share more. Developing good listening skills and providing space physically and mentally where they can talk.

However is the starting point with their own confidence, do they believe they have anything to share. What is their story do they believe they have a relevancy and ideas to contribute. Every team member needs to feel valued and appreciated and then they will believe they have a platform to speak.

The first myth to blow is that information shared needs to be knowledge based. The difference between knowledge and wisdom goes some of the way to demonstrating we all have something to share.

  • Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit
  • Wisdom is knowing not to add the tomato to a fruit salad

Everyone has some wisdom or an experience worth sharing, more often than not, learnt from a failing. Some-one else’s failure could be the key to several others learning. Creating a culture where “wisdom of mistakes” becomes the buzz will lead to a transparent and open culture.

Stepping out of comfort zones, will blow away layers of hierarchy. Peer to peer sharing and in addition reverse sharing, the most junior sharing with Senior Leads.

Several companies have tried to formalise how they share knowledge, such as Estee Lauder creating “Dream Space” knowledge sharing portal. The success is creating an online platform, however the space might not lead to meaningful relationships.

The secret is to create an informal environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing, however some clever set up that it becomes natural and evolving.

Mentoring schemes in organisations are formalised and structured, however they take administration to set up. The sense of belonging to the organisation’s existing culture might inhibit and deter the people you want to encourage to share, the voices that don’t get heard.

Just as you ask some-one “How are you?” the response will be “fine thank you”.

You want something more than “fine”, you desire and crave a community of people who are sharing their skills, expertise, knowledge and ideas that are so much more than just fine.

Get personal you want to talk, listen and share. If a work community is going to grow together it has to be a common currency and the norm where you listen, talk and share. There will be a phase where it feels contrived however you are striving for an environment where it feels normal and acceptable that you have a coffee and a catch up with the CEO whatever your level.

Imagine your company is a coffee shop where the tables are always full and you circulate around.

It’s good to share, talk and listen – please do get in touch for a virtual coffee with bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

http://www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Decision Making, Goals, motivation, personal impact, Time management

Effortless & Enjoyable

Diving into a task and visualising it as being effortless and enjoyable is hard. I often practice the approach from Brian Tracey’s bestseller “Eat that Frog” that if you had to eat a live frog you would want to eat it as quickly as possible. However my procrastination kicks in, and I am often overwhelmed by the frog. I look at it for a long time and have no idea where to start.

There is another approach that comes from the book “Effortless” by Greg McKeown. He uses a acronym to put us in the right frame of mind for a project.

D.D.O.G.G.

Done – What does done look like?

McKeown says take 60 seconds to visual the moment of completion. What is the final action? Pressing the send button on an email, pressing upload on YouTube or closing your window on the Zoom meeting, or is it plate of food you have created.

Delete – What steps can I delete it?

Start looking at the piece of work from 0 and thinking what steps do you need to carry out. Minimise the steps by deleting and combining, fancy recipes often have ingredients you don’t have and the taste might not be affected. A project or task on paper looks a lot less scary than in your head.

Obvious – What is the obvious first action?

Once you have the momentum of starting you relax into the project or task. The need to identify the first step is crucial, you may have done this by mapping out your tasks. In the book McKeown gives an example of some-one needing bookshelves and the first task would be to measure the walls. It materialises the reason the task has never moved forward is the individual did not own a tape measure – the obvious first task would be to buy or borrow a tape measure.

Gradual – What gradual pace can I sustain?

Establish a rate of progress that you can sustain and will enjoy. If you have to walk 30 miles, visualising a mile a day for 30 days is sustainable, 2 walks at 15 miles might overwhelm you. To quote McKeown “Do not do more today than you can completely recover from by tomorrow”.

Grateful – What can I be grateful for?

If you were to run a marathon and only focus on the aches and pains, you would feel every step. You need to focus on what you are grateful for. You will be grateful to the support you are receiving the progress you are making. Think of every time you complain replace it with something you are grateful for, and your step will be lighter.

In summary if you enter an:-

Effortless State – believing you can achieve the task and you will enjoy it.

Effortless Action – your gradual progress at the right pace for you

Effortless Results – focusing on the gratitude

Please do get in touch for a bitesize workshop with nuggets or a colourful coaching session bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

http://www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Change management, coaching, Decision Making, Leadership, Management

Why do you need a “great” process…?

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.” Mark Twain

When cash machines were launched the process was not full proof, you got your cash before you retrieved your card. Everyone was so keen to get their money that they forgot their cards. Banks found that the process was flawed, they just needed to change one part of the process. Retrieve your card and then get your cash.

Have you recently come across a process that was straightforward and that you felt was clear and carried you through with good signalling.

I recently donated some clothes to charity using an on-line system. I ordered bags online, received them/filled them, and then I followed a process of how to return the bags. The top of the website page told you where you were in the process. The visual indicators were excellent even an icon of the bag gave me confidence that I was progressing and I knew where I was at any part of the process.

Thinking about your own business, do your Clients know the process they are entering into and do your team follow the same process.

Focusing on a good system can save time and can be more effective. James Clear the author of Atomic Habits says that our systems are more important than our goals. If we get a system, process or ritual ingrained it becomes unconscious competence.

The first stage is to map out your process, with as much detail as possible. Think about the intangibles as much as the tangibles. When facilitating a session we use a pizza as an example, you need the dough first then the tomato base, cheese and various toppings. However when we think in business it is more complex than just toppings, what questions do you need to ask, how do you present the service you are offering, and how do you convert a conversation to a sale. Using a length of brown paper (easier and more modern to now use strips of magic whiteboards) and post-its map out each stage of the customer journey.

The next part of the process is to analyse the process, where is there overlap, who is responsible at certain points, put initials on your map.

Do you need to redesign the process, change a couple of steps. Think about timings that go with the process, is it 2 weeks to reconnect with a client or 4, make a system.

Start using the new process straight away, and communicate all the time as team as to how the process feels, as you still may need to tweak even at this stage.

Finally set up a review meeting when the process has been operating for 3 months, decide what has gone well, what could be done differently and what could you stop doing.

  • Map the process
  • Analyse the process
  • Redesign the process
  • Implement and communicate
  • Review

Please do get in touch if you would like nuggets to work with you on your processes.

http://www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Change management, Emotional Intelligence, personal impact, Relationships, training

What does it mean to be Assertive…?

Working from home you need to be heard and it is a fine balance between sounding too aggressive or simply just being Assertive.

What does is mean to be Assertive?

Behaviour based on a philosophy of personal responsibility and awareness of the right of others.

What does it look like?

Good eye contact and an open posture, matched with clear communication.

Why is it so hard?

UK culture loves to use sarcasm, which however you wrap it up, sadly stills falls into the aggressive category. We are emotional by nature and therefore we are reactive, and sadly with low emotional intelligence we can become aggressive. With our fight/flight instinct we either go into fight mode tending to be aggressive or we flee to avoid conflict and fall into passive behaviour. Listening is a key element of being Assertive, however it is a skill and therefore you need to concentrate and have enough energy to do it well.

What are the five key ingredients of being Assertive?

  1. Listening
  2. Showing you understand by reflecting & summarising
  3. Saying how you think and feel
  4. Saying what you would like
  5. Considering the consequences on yourself and others

What do we mean by responsible Assertion?

If you imagine a set of scales with your own personal rights one end and the other end respect for the rights of others you would be creating the right balance = responsible assertion.

What assertion is not?

About getting your own way and winning every time. Manipulating and managing others to get your own way.

For a practical workshop on how to be more Assertive please book yourself onto our next Developing YOU module – Thursday 13th May @ 10.00am – £40 per person

Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZArdOGtrDkvGtZs6HuwtKuyly-BcjWefzfD

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Decision Making, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Learning, Management

Think again…

When was the last time that you stopped what you were doing and thought I will rethink that task. We get locked into behavioural patterns which are driven by our values and beliefs.

Adam Grant the author of Think again, says we create an overconfident cycle:-

  • We form an opinion that feels right
  • Seek information to support that opinion
  • Feel validated
  • Proudly express our opinions

The cycles strengthens every time we preach, prosecute or politick. What do each of these three modes look like?

Preaching – you have a belief and the more you preach the more you are 100% certain, you ignore data to the contrary as it does not support the belief you are holding onto. Examples: belief in a political party, an investment, a way of working, new software etc…

Prosecuting – we prosecute an individual’s idea we dismiss their views on other areas as we do not hold their initial belief. Examples: political views, charities they support, way of working etc…

Politicking – we adopt others view points as we want to be liked and accepted by them. Examples: political parties adopt policies that will attract supporters, you may support your Managers opinion in order to get promotion etc…

If you imagine all of these three areas compound our overconfident cycle and we become blinkered to rethinking.

Adam Grant asked the scientist Daniel Kahneman what he does when he finds flaws in his research. Kahneman’s reply was “Its wonderful, I get a chance to be less wrong”. We all need to “Think like a Scientist”. The whole makeup of a Scientist is that they see ideas and beliefs as hunches that need to be tested.

We can start by thinking like a Scientist by using The Rethinking cycle:-

  • Doubt (acknowledge it)
  • Curiosity (of other ideas, opinions, beliefs)
  • Discovery (explore options)
  • Confident humility (admit your way was not necessarily the best)

One way to begin this new mode of thinking is to write down two headings:-

  • Things I don’t know
  • Things I have learnt recently

Humility has always needed to be a leadership characteristic, however the ability to rethink and have a confident humility is something we can all look at now in a very uncertain world.

Make this blog practical by challenging your own beliefs this week, if you have a doubt about a meeting being at 9.00am rethink it. The project is not going to run on the software selected by yourself, put your hand up and express doubt. The new hire you have made might not be the right for the culture, be open with your team, have confident humility.

Please do get in touch for a workshop around rethinking bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

http://www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Book a place on Developing YOU – Thursday 29th April 2021 @ 10.00am – 90 minute workshop £40 per delegate

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, personal impact, Relationships, Stress management

Star quality in leadership…

Why do some leaders lead well and others fail? What do we mean when we talk about “real” leadership?

The “real” components are the ability to listen not just with your head but your heart as well. To be empathetic and not sympathetic. Finding the perfect assertion level that does not tip into aggression. Reading all situations with clarity and acting decisively, independently and most importantly with grace.

Understanding what makes us sad/mad and glad is the same for our colleagues, clients and family. Emotions shape our behaviour and determine whether we are sad/mad or glad. They have the ability to guide you on the most important decisions in life so there is an economy attached to our emotions.

The star quality within Leadership is that key ability to read the signals and understand your own emotional intelligence and of others.

If emotional intelligence is the star quality and the part of leadership that makes us real what is it.

The rational brain your prefrontal communicates constantly with your emotional centre the limbic, helping you to form judgements and make choices. If you imagine this is like a broadband connection between the two centres and it is critical for the development of your emotional intelligence. If you imagine we have an experience (prefrontal) passes (limbic) to give you an emotion the two connect regularly and you learn from the emotions you have used in the past. You effectively accumulate emotional capital (experiences that have either made you sad/mad or glad).

Martyn Newman describes New Leaders as Emotional Capitalists which is the name of his book. Daniel Goleman first brought emotional intelligence to the business world in 1997, however Newman’s book gives it the commerciality that was sometimes lacking in the work of Goleman. By understanding your emotional intelligence it will help in all areas of your business not just your own personality, it will link to revenue and sales.

To find your star quality in leadership, simply book onto one of our workshops:-

Developing Emotional Intelligence
Date:- Thursday 29th April 2021
Time:- 10.00am (90 minutes)
Cost:- £40 per person per workshop
To book a place, please email bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk
All the details of the workshops are in the brochure just hit the link below:-
https://lnkd.in/dFHyR57

Posted in Bite size learning, Decision Making, Leadership, motivation, personal impact

nuggets – Start with Why?

Simon Sinek’s TED talk, asks us to look at our businesses and Start with why? Why do you do what you do? People will do business with you because of why you do it not because of what you do.

Why do you get out of your bed in the morning. I love my business and understanding why I do what I do is the easy part.

The test is the “celery test” do you do your Why everyday. Sinek says that if you want to start eating healthily then celery must be in your shopping trolley. So if you have the clarity of Why do you put it to the test everyday. The Why is made up of a contribution and an impact. At nuggets the Why is “Helping people to think and work differently (the contribution) so that they can enjoy their best life (impact). The celery test is making sure that I do this everyday.

The discipline of How is often that unique thing that your business does that sets you apart from your competitors. Mine is colourful learning, the most comments I get from delegates is the colourful materials and often the colourful clothing of “me”. The discipline which sounds an odd word to use, is all about the continuity. When I am tired and think do I need a flip chart or heaven forbid I decide to just wear black, that is when I am not being true to the How?

What we do? the really dull part and in a nutshell either your job title or the transactional side of the business. However successful businesses ensure that the What is consistent. So the processes and practises in place mean that any interaction with your business does look and feel the same. If you attend a coaching session with nuggets does it feel the same as a workshop.

Start with Why? is all about finding not creating. Your why is deep routed within you and is totally intrinsic to who you are.

It is harder to find the Why in larger organisations, however certainly not impossible and so good for teams. The Why gives you followers and motivates, inspires and meaning to their day to day jobs. In his workbook Finding your Why, Sinek says you can have several Whys within an organisation, described as nesting. Different departments have their own nests and there is an accumulation however somehow they all factor into the main contributions and impact of the company.

As an individual take time to think about Why you are getting out of bed. Start by thinking of verbs (doing words) something that is the contribution:-

  • Thinking
  • Provoking
  • Building
  • Learning
  • Sharing

Then think about what the impact of that contribution has on people you come into contact with throughout the day. This will be the celery test as to whether you are making difference and whether you really feel your Why?

We are running an open workshop over Zoom on Thursday 29th April at 10.00am GMT – Developing Emotional Intelligence the cost is £40 per delegate. Please do get in touch if you wish to secure a place by emailing bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk