Posted in Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, personal impact, Relationships, Stress management

Resilient Pink…

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.

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Posted in Bite size learning, Leadership, Management, personal impact, Stress management

Effective email management

“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:-

  • 722 emails

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:-

#Action

#Waiting for

#Read review

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.

Posted in Bite size learning, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, personal impact, Uncategorized

Does your dress code match your email…?

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.

 

 

 

 

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, mindfulness, motivation

Dose of Happiness…

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 Key phrase Example
DOPAMINE One more Setting and achieving milestones
OXYTOCIN Intimacy and safety One-on-ones with Manager
SEROTONIN Loyalty Making the team proud
ENDORPHINS No pain 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 bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Leadership, mindfulness, Stress management, Time management

Short time horizon…

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 bev@nuggetoflearning.co.uk

 

Posted in Bite size learning, Goals, Leadership, Management

Objective setting…

“What gets measured gets done…” Tom Peters

Objectives setting should be seen as an important exercise and not just an unnecessary layer of bureaucracy.

The scene needs to be set that everyone is involved and that they set their own objectives. Everyone needs to “Begin with the end in mind” – Stephen Covey, what do you want to achieve and how will you feel if it happens.

You need to get excited at the direction the objective could take you in. This will occur by taking an inside out approach, already imagining “What will be happening…?”

Also to understand the relevancy of the objective you need to reverse the psychology “What won’t be happening if I don’t set this objective?” This tells you whether it was realistic in the first place.

Stretch objectives takes us just a little further from our comfort zone this means we appreciate and value the effort to achieve. Setting an easy objective leads to complacency and does not move our performance within an organisation.

Objectives provide a story and a history of progression without them it is a book without chapters.

Please visit our website for more workshops www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Management, Relationships

Knowledge Vs Wisdom

Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit and wisdom is knowing that it does not go in a fruit salad.

Knowledge is your IQ (intelligence quotient), your data and facts that you have acquired.  Wisdom is your EQ (emotional quotient), the application and , how well you do something and it is appropriate.

Therefore going into leadership we need more wisdom than knowledge and we must not be intimidated by millennials with bags of current knowledge.  Wisdom is maturity of the mind, knowing what works and what does not work.  As parents we can steer our children’s behaviour by dipping into our wisdom far more than knowledge.

  • Knowledge is knowing how to manage your money by budgeting, spending and saving
  • Wisdom is understanding how money impacts the quality of your life and your future

If you were to use knowledge vs wisdom as an equation to everything you do as the example above demonstrates, you can evaluate the knowledge accumulation.  Where will knowledge take you and how will you apply it.  We sometimes do tasks for the sake of doing them, recording expenditure is a good example.  If you never apply any wisdom to the sums recorded you will not have used knowledge and wisdom as a formula.

Knowledge is a tool, and wisdom is the craft in which the tool is used

Leadership is leaning far more towards wisdom, applying and just knowing whether something is right or wrong.  Past life experiences will determine whether an individual is taking the best path.

Knowledge is knowing what to say and Wisdom is knowing when to say it.

For a leadership workshop please do take a tour of website www.nuggetsoflearning.co.uk  and contact bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk