Change is inevitable in the business world, clients change orders, suppliers let you down or you change a process to be more efficient. Teams are reluctant to embrace change as whatever is occurring a loss is involved somewhere. It can be minor to major, however the emotional reaction can be managed with a clear formula.
John Kotter’s book “Our iceberg is melting” tells the tale of a colony of penguins and their need to move as their iceberg is melting.
The change you may be involved in, might not be as dramatic, however follow Kotter’s steps to smooth the way for your team:-
- Create a sense of urgency – help others to see the need for the change
- Pull together a leading/guiding team to provide guidance for others
- Decide what to do – create a vision or strategy so everyone understands
- Make it happen – communicate for understanding and buy in
- Empower others to act
- Acknowledge short term wins – celebrate the small stuff
- Make it stick – ensure this is a cultural change so you are ready for the next change
In the book the penguins realise icebergs will always melt and that is true of the world of commerce, prices go up and down and we always need to adjust our business. Creating a culture of change is more sustainable than just managing reactively. Your team will feel more secure and more adept towards change if they have a plan and a process as Kotter’s book demonstrates.
Please do contact firstname.lastname@example.org for a 90 minute workshop on Change.
Harvard Business School Goal Story
In the book “What They Don’t Teach You in the Harvard Business School”, Mark McCormack tells the story of a study conducted on students in the 1979 Harvard MBA program. In that year, the students were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?” Only 3% of the graduates had written goals and plans; 13% had goals, but they were not in writing; and a whopping 84% had no specific goals at all.
10 years later, the members of the class were interviewed again, and the findings, while somewhat predictable, were nonetheless astonishing. The 13% of the class who had goals were earning, on average, twice as much as the 84% who had no goals at all. And what about the 3% who had clear, written goals? They were earning, on average, ten times as much as the other 97% put together.
Write your goals down for 2018 or speak to nuggets about a workshop on goal setting.
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The media is awash since the Harvey Weinstein of abuse cases and how do you determine the line that people cross.
My own experiences has measured my thoughts around appropriate and inappropriate.
In my early 20’s I went for an interview to work with a very well successful businessman. With hindsight this first introduction to him should have been a warning of what was to come, the level of control. I was asked to wipe off my lipstick (my trademark bright pink). This felt very odd, and I had lots of time to reflect on this instruction as I was left in a room for a very long period to wait for the “big man”. Looking back I think I was being watched and the whole situation was a test.
I got the job without the lipstick which I was still advised to hold back on.
The prestige of working for the company and the man himself let me initially enjoy the situation. It became apparent that it was not business as normal. Five secretaries to one PA, could easily tell you that we were just ever slightly over manned.
We would be rewarded with money for carrying a brief case, however in the process the wandering hands went too far. Sex toys would be placed on our desks to see our reaction, and I was particularly naive.
I left after 6 months and the first thing I did was make sure my lipstick was brighter than ever. The resilient pink continues and I know where the line is for me.
I ask myself would I want my daughter to be humiliated and lose confidence due to an individual who believed fame and money would protect him.
Arriving at meeting last week there was lots of banter about whether we could greet each other with hug. I laughed with the group, however I was delighted that there is now thinking around personal space. My own example is somewhat extreme, however there are levels within everything and there is always a line to cross or not to cross.
We can create a better place and be resilient with or without pink lipstick.
“We must lead emails rather than them leading us…” Bev Wilkinson
Being effective with email management is how you behave around emails rather than the simple processing. We need to set ground rules and set up rituals and habits that fit with our lives. We can control it rather than it control us.
Dan Pink’s book – “To Sell is Human”, listed the number of emails he received in two weeks:-
To improve organisational effectiveness is not too focus on the number or volume. The attention should be on clear guidelines as to how you manage your in-box.
There is no easy way and the whole idea of personal productivity means that it is personal to you. Systems need to be tweaked and adapted to work. Sharing ideas with team members can give you new ways of interacting with the screen.
If you look at an email 5 minutes before you go into a meeting you take that email into the meeting. Checking your email before you go to bed means that you will take that email to bed with you.
We can be effective by making choices that work for our lives, book an appointment with your emails as you would any other contact.
The book “Getting Things Done” by David Allen suggests setting up sub folders that sit at the top of your other folders. This can easily be achieved by putting a # in front of the title:-
To be effective think about the rhythm of your day and decide when you want to manage your email. Relax that you don’t have to know everything all the time.
Being effective is the right processes for you.
More and more companies are moving towards a casual dress code. We often wear the right clothes to do the right job. You would never garden in your high heels, the trusted wellington boot is the footwear of choice.
If we are not wearing the right dress does it mean that our tone becomes more relaxed.
- Do we mind if the team use emojis in their emails?
- Use Hi instead of Dear
- Sign off with thanks or cheers
- Go straight into the email
- Put the content of the email in the subject box
- Use comic sans as a font
When dress codes change they often get misinterpreted, what is casual in my eyes might not be in some-one else’s eyes. There is an adjustment phase, some team members intentionally push the boundaries. Our clothes are very much a part of the image and the culture we belong in. They are easy to spot and give feedback on.
The tonality and content of your team emails are harder to spot.
Introduce guidelines of the tonality you expect and the look and appearance of your emails. They are often and the first contact with your company, ensure that it is the right image.
We create our own happiness by choosing the state that we go into, however how much are we aided by the chemicals in our brain. Science colliding with our emotional intelligence.
At a talk at our son’s school they explained how teenagers can steer their behaviour with bearing in mind the dosage they need to be happy. It is healthy for teenagers to hug and want companionship and yet social media does not give them that intimacy or immediate closeness. The wrong elements of the happiness can be exaggerated, the teenagers can become addicted to posting and the reaction of their friends.
Simon Sinek of TED talk fame and for the book “Start with Why”, explained when writing his book “Leaders Eat Last” the chemicals that makes us happy.
He used the mnemonic EDSO however at my son’s school last week they made it far more catchy – DOSE of happiness.
DOPAMINE – motivates us to achieve incremental goals. It is the greed element of the brain it makes us feel good when we tick things off the to-do list and it can become highly addictive.
OXYTOCIN – creates intimacy, trust and the feeling that some-one will protect you. Mothers and babies and lovers feel this when they are protected and loved, the feeling of safety.
SEROTONIN – provides the feeling of significance, pride, status. It drives us to seek the recognition of others. I want to do it so that my family are proud of me. It reinforces relationships within a group, it can give cohesion to a team.
ENDORPHINS – keeps us going during work outs or runs, it helps us endure difficulties. We have the same rush when we laugh.
If we were put them into a table:-
|Chemicals for Happiness
||Setting and achieving milestones
||Intimacy and safety
||One-on-ones with Manager
||Making the team proud
||Late night working
The right DOSE can steer you through an organisation and life. Check-in to see whether you are being exposed to the right amount in each area.
Please do get in touch for a workshop on Happiness firstname.lastname@example.org
The snow globe is a very visual representation as to how we live our lives. We focus on the small things and yet some-one is forever shaking it up. The building or structure in the centre of the globe we forget about.
We enjoy achieving the small stuff as we get that buzz of achievement, we have ticked a list or highlighted an accomplishment. We release dopamine in the brain the feel good chemical, instant gratification.
We have attended 3 meetings this week however they may have no complexity. Thinking is not linear and involves engaging the brain fully. The temptation to achieve immediate is everywhere. The email pop up could easily take you away from the hard report that needs to be written and involves thinking. We get addicted at accumulating small tasks, it is called structured procrastination.
This short term horizon is due to the fact that we are now a society based on impulse. We crave automatic self stimulation, we send a message and we crave the reply. We create an addictive cycle.
We are encouraged to do more and now with technology we have no limits. There are now work addiction groups. People enjoy the control that task accomplishment gives them, where as living life does not have the same completion and control.
An example would be a Senior Executive has to forecast next year’s figures, it will be a black and white document with figures based on the evidence of the previous year. The same Executive has to manage the behaviour of their 18 month old who has not yet mastered sleeping through the night. You can guess which one has the linear thinking and the control and the latter requires a more creative approach.
The culture we have created is “Try harder” and it is a “Short time Horizon” we need to look to a broader, slower and altogether bigger horizon. Try this week to do more thinking.
Please do get in touch to explore thinking more email@example.com