Posted in Bite size learning, Goals, motivation, personal impact, training

90 minutes…

The World Cup is made up of 90 minute matches.  Within that crucial time period, is all the highs and lows any individual can experience.

  • Exhilaration
  • Despair
  • Delight

The game of two halves split into 45 minute modules.  We witness collaboration, joy and agony, a team working towards achieving goals.  The match can be amazing when the team work together it is as if magic has occurred in front of your eyes.

Their performance is based on those 90 minutes especially in a World Cup, they have to perform at that one moment in time.

The brain concentrates for 45 minutes and then needs a break to begin the next 45 minutes.  At your desk set yourself goals and imagine your own World Cup made up of two halves.  Focus on that one achievement for a pure 45 minute period.  Be aware of how much help you need from your team.  The best players are supported and putting egos to one side don’t take all the glory.

The best learning can occur in 90 minutes, when a Facilitator takes a team through a topic, they learn at the same moment in time as each other.  Ideas and discussion are shared and everyone feels they are in a safe environment.

The benefits of learning in 90 minutes, less time away from desk so a cost effective methodology of training a team. The atmosphere created can be like on the pitch, interactive, stimulating and challenging.  Booking 5 x 90 minute modules means the team meet up once a fortnight and share their learning.

For Management and Leadership topics please contact bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk 

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Posted in Bite size learning, Emotional Intelligence, personal impact, Relationships

Making assumptions…

Greggs went undercover to launch their new summer range.

To break the assumptions around their name they rebranded themselves to disassociate themselves from the “sausage roll” image.   They chose an upmarket foodie festival where the audience would be connoisseurs of food.

We can learn from Greggs, how sometimes we need to break assumptions.   In order to do something different we need to repackage it.   They did this with the name change to Gregory and Gregory.  It might be as simple as changing a bit of your look or being brave and presenting without slides.  Being original and slightly different to the view people have of you might start them thinking about you differently.

Greggs conducted the exercise as they wanted people who did not shop with them, to start visiting them.  Who would you like to see that you have never seen before or who would you like to view you differently.

Once people start thinking about you differently their perceptions change.

As an exercise write down all the assumptions you believe people have about you already and then challenge all of them.  You might realise that some do not need breaking and others could be altered by one small action or others by radical steps.

Learn from Greggs about making assumptions…

Posted in Bite size learning, coaching, Emotional Intelligence, mindfulness, personal impact

Being socially savvy…

Social intelligence is just like regular intelligence, some of it we are born with and have a natural predisposition and the rest is learnt from good and bad experience.  Some people  it comes intrinsically with their personality and they are more charismatic, likeable and socially intelligent.

However if social situations are more tricky for you it does not mean that you cannot improve.  Like any intelligence you need to learn and practice.

Being social savvy is about making fewer obvious mistakes than others.  Knowing when to tell a joke or make a comment that is right for the audience.

Poor social skills can often be more of a failure than merely an intellectual one.   The memory of a bad impression will last longer than a positive impression.

Here are some top tips as to how you can begin developing the skill:-

  • Listening versus speaking – you need to understand the mind of the person you are speaking to so that you have the intended effect
  • Read the signals – Be in sync with the room, how is the mood and atmosphere
  • Understand the whole person – watch out for leakage in their body language
  • Comfortable eye contact – engaged and not intense
  • Welcoming posture – some-one you want to approach
  • Warmth – through your voice and your physicality
  • Be inclusive of others around you
  • 80% Listening – aware of social context and empathetic listening
  • Feedback – ask your peers or work with a coach to gauge your impact

Please do get in touch to develop your social skills by a nuggets workshop or 1:1 coaching.

bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk

Posted in Bite size learning, Emotional Intelligence, Goals, Leadership, motivation, personal impact

Entrepreneurial Spirit…

Many organisations are now looking for that edge, employees who although part of a company have independent thinking.  The group operate as entrepreneurs, thinking their department is a business and being open to new thinking and new ways of working.

In Sahar Hashemi’s book “Switched On” she gives a route as to how to engage with your entrepreneurial spirit.

  • Believe anyone can do it – use the skills of everyday life in your life at work.
  • Put yourself in your customers’s shoes – Jeff Bezos famously has an empty chair at every meeting for the client
  • Get out of the office – Engage with the wide world – leave the office and know what is going on around you
  • Become clueless – Forgetting how you do things – dump the baggage or the language “we have always done it this way”
  • Prototype – What does your product or service look and feel like? – gain insight from something tangible
  • Notch up Nos – Change your attitude to a “no” – try harder and see a “no” as a challenge
  • Bootstrap – Get things done with limited resources, work really hard and then harder
  • Take 100% of yourself to work – 100% effort + 100% personality = being you

 

Each of these tips are new habits that you need to work into your diary so that they become rituals and disciplines that you adopt.

Involve your team with the ideas and initiatives you will then be a group of entrepreneurs totally switched on.

For a workshop on creative thinking please contact bev@nuggetsoflearning.co.uk 

Posted in Change management, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Management, personal impact

Manager to Leader…

Promotion to management is initially great, business is good, new trips, making big decisions and learning a lot. Team are performing well and results being achieved, so much so that you take your eye off their performance.

You try really hard to still be one of the team, you want them to like you, so that they want to work for you. You attend dinner and drinks and even share with the team some of the issues you are facing.

You even comment on Senior Management, saying that they could do a better job.

The economy changes and results are harder to achieve and the performance issues you ignored are now becoming a problem.

You work longer hours to cover the performance issues and your team are unhappy and the results reflect this.

You seek help outside from a business mentor.

The first thing the mentor does is reassure you that you are not alone. Making the transition from Manager to Leader is hard and often being liked has to be put to one side, and instead being respected for the right reasons.

“If you want to be extraordinary you have to stop being ordinary”.

Your team needs to like you for the right reasons, being fair, consistent, empathetic and positive. If they like you for the free drinks and the dinners and the gossip on Senior management, you are in the wrong position. Making tough decisions will get harder if they are your friends.

Remember when you first learnt to drive, naturally you were excited and confidently proclaimed you would be the best driver ever. Sadly that over confident attitude led to an accident, no-one was injured but why did it happen?

It was the difference in responsibilities between being the driver and being a passenger.

Passengers are free to do a lot of things the driver can’t do. As a driver your focus needs to be on the road and not on the distractions. As a driver you no longer have the right to mess around, playing with the radio, texting and eating snacks.

The same principle applies when you become a leader. You are no longer a passenger you are the driver. Even though your responsibilities increase when you become a leader, you lose some of the rights or freedoms you may have enjoyed in the past.

If you want to be successful you cannot join criticisms of Senior Management. You lose the right to blame others for a problem in your department, you are now responsible for everything. You even lose the right to some of your time because you are responsible for other peoples time as well as your own.

The opposite of accepting responsibility is to find some-one or something to blame for the issues you are facing. There is always some-one or something to blame, but a real leader spends his time fixing the problem instead of finding who to blame.

“What happens when you place blame is that you focus on the past. When you accept responsibility you focus on the future and you can create actions to achieve your objectives.”

Be a Driver:

  • Until you accept total responsibility – no matter what – you will not be able to put actions in place to achieve your objectives.
  • Transitioning from Manager to Leader requires that you make different decisions.
Posted in Change management, Emotional Intelligence, mindfulness, motivation, personal impact, Stress management

The right attitude…

Last Monday I was fortunate enough to attend a talk by James Shone from the charity

“I Can and I Am”.

James has an amazing story from being a House Master to applying to be a Head and in his words landing the “dream” job.  Part of the selection process was a medical, where James discovered he had a brain tumour.  Surgery and a journey of recovery began with the “dream” job disappearing, James found a new purpose.

He set up the charity, “I Can and I Am” to inspire confidence in secondary school children through inspirational talks.

He started on Monday by sharing his own story and then talking to us as parents about how we can work with our children to give them the confidence to believe they can do anything.

His first top tip UFO Vs DBI, the abbreviations stand for Up, Forward and Out and Down, Back and In.  If we always look up and forward and out, we can see the big sky with all the possibilities.  Down back and in, begins that self limiting inner dialogue and where we over analyse events.

As a teacher he was keen for us to understand the progress made by teaching being evaluated by outside influence e.g. Ofsted.  However we are still focusing very much on a funnel all the good stuff goes in, however the system only focuses on that very tight tube at the end of the funnel, academic results.

Teenagers today are spending so much time on their phones which as we know releases the addictive Dopamine in our brain.  We need to unlock other passions and all of this can start at 14 years of age.

As parents we can look to a 3B continuum:-

  • Between – controlling (when they are young and dependent)
  • Beside – journey with them (understanding their life and the gradual steps of independence)
  • Behind – I am here if you need me – the ultimate interdependence

Every child needs a confidence boost and James used the example of an ordinary balloon.  We can either choose to inflate their confidence or deflate, knocking their self worth.  If they are constantly deflated it is like driving a car with a flat tyre, progress is slow and damaging.

There are four things we can ensure:-

  1. Belong – do they feel part of something, do they have a role
  2. Valued – embedding a growth mindset (Carol Dweck) “I can’t do it” should become “I can’t do it yet…”
  3. Good at something – look at the multiple intelligences by Professor Howard Gardner.  We all have strengths in areas that need to be uncovered by the people around us
  4. Future secure – setbacks are viewed as a springboard.  We may fall down but how quickly do we get back up and focus on the future.

We must give our teenagers authentic praise by ensuring we say:-

  • “I noticed…
  • “I heard…
  • “I saw…

Firsthand commentary of what they are doing well and it is our job to build those affirmations in their heads.

We have responsibility to demonstrate our own love of life be the role model with the right attitude.

We might not have a story as big as James Shone, however we can ensure that we smile and dance when we put the dishwasher on.  Talk about your work with passion and share your life with your teenagers.  Behaviour is contagious lets get them talking and off the screen.

 

 

 

 

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.