Forgive the indulgence, the blog is of a very personal nature this week.
One of my “Best” friends died five days ago and it puts everything into perspective. What is the definition of “Best”. The dictionary says exceptional or outstanding which I think is perfect to define what you get from a really brilliant friendship.
The list is endless:-
- Best listener
- Best times to be had and full of laughter
- Best walker – with knowledge of all the Surrey Hills
- Best organiser – parties, events and fund raiser
- Best at giving an honest opinion
- Best advice – on parenting and life
- Best in giving – whether it be plants, time and numerous coffees
The synopsis stills feels inadequate in terms of the void it leaves. Think about what are the best things about you that you give your friends. Your self worth will grow knowing what your best attributes are and what you give others.
Cherish the best in friends and family as you may well be robbed without ever telling them what the best was.
The theme for International Women’s Day – #Balanceforbetter. Gender balance is not just a women’s issue – it is a business issue.
The definition of the word balance is even distribution, different elements are equal.
The reality for women is:-
- 208 female members of Parliament – 32% of the House of Commons
- 199 female peers – 24% of the House of Lords
- The UK ranks 15th in the Global Gender Gap Survey
- In the FTSE 100 there are 6 female CEOs
- In the financial sector women earn on average 20% less than men
To understand gender equality I have found an excellent video that is called Gender Equality explained by children. In essence boys and girls do the same job, putting balls into a jar, and yet the boy is rewarded more than the girl. The pay for the job is a jar of sweeties, so initially the children just look at their treat without saying anything. Eventually a girl asks “Why?” and a boy also says “We did the same job” and another boy says “She was as good as me and did not get the same”. The spotlight on the injustice is not lost on the children, and yet today it gets so easily lost.
Why does #Balanceforbetter matter?
- Companies with better gender diversity are 15% more likely to show an increase in financial returns.
- Women represent half the world – therefore half the potential
- Balance matters whether it be gender/skills/knowledge/age
Please do get in touch for ideas around how you can create #balanceforbetter in your organisation.
We bring our children up to believe they can have everything. In schools we now give medals for partcipating, so the shock of hard work and results in the world of work are a surprise. What has eroded confidence before we enter business…?
Many of our children are gaming and constantly interacting with social media. We know that the addictive dopamine keeps their interest and whilst they compete for results they are rarely shared. In order to feel good instead of face to face feedback they are counting the number of likes on a post. Turning to a device instead of a person, means they lack the ability to form deep meaningful relationships. The approval of their peers to grow self esteem is coming from an electronic perspective and not a human.
In order to believe in ourselves we have to be happy in real life and not on our social media platforms.
Genuine praise and recognition takes time and is not an instant when we are in the work place. The younger generation have not learnt the ability to wait for anything, everything can be obtained immediately. You don’t even have to wait for the next episode you can download the whole box set. Instant gratification rather than waiting for a reward which would give us pleasure and contentment.
Job satisfaction is arduous, you have to work hard and build new relationships, you have to have patience. We find a lot of the younger generation want to quit straightaway as they have never had to wait before.
To survive in work we need a good self image and lots of feedback to grow our self esteem. This needs to be authentic and genuine.
Corporates are not helping to create the right environment for this generation. Companies are still very number orientated and there is very little investment in helping people to build confidence. We lack good leaders taking time to guide their direct reports. We need to develop social skills by role modelling, the little innocuous comments that make all the difference. “How’s your Dad?” Through these little asides trust is formed.
Social media plays with our confidence across all generations, watching your friends and family having a lovely life on a screen rather than being with them. We are social beasts, put down the phone and go and have lunch with a colleague.
Please do get in touch with nuggets on developing confidence “Fearless motivation” firstname.lastname@example.org
Working in a team has two elements: what we do and how we do it. The second part is the team culture you create and this is formed by rituals and a set of behaviours you may share or desire to share. To cultivate what feels comfortable and cohesive as a group it is worth setting some ground rules, guiding principles that you can roll into a team charter.
Providing an agreement people can follow as to how they work together provides processes, responsibilities and obligations.
A good starting point is to ask some key questions:-
- What is important to us as team?
- What values do we have about how we interact and what underpins our actions?
- How do we communicate with each other?
- How do we address conflict with each other?
- How do we want to be recognised as individuals?
- What do we want to put in place to support us in times of pressure?
Brainstorm the questions together and with some of the answers in your mind start to document a charter. A good starting point is to think of the overall purpose of the charter.
To identify citizenship behaviours that link to the charter identify positive and negatives. Ask the team to write down five behaviours that build the team and five behaviours that bring the team down. We shall call these groups “Fair” and “Foul”.
Combined with the first exercise you will have created your team charter.
Please do get in touch if you would like nuggets to facilitate such an exercise email@example.com
On Friday I was very lucky to attend a TEDx at Woking. The sponsor and host created a great atmosphere with the simplest of exercises.
He asked you take your phone out and show a picture that means something to you, to somebody you didn’t know.
I connected with a lady in front of me who shared a picture of her Mum with Reindeer ears on her head. She said the photo made her smile as her Mum had been ill recently and it was a lovely picture to show her better and laughing. In that 2 mins it took to show me that photo I connected immediately with a stranger.
It is rare now to be invited to get your phone out in a conference situation, however how effective to use technology as a basis for starting a conversation.
Imagine with all the stories we hear about troubled teenagers, we got them to use their devices to share and explain more, we would be connecting both worlds. There is a great deal of “tell” language in schools, the word “ban” and just even saying “no” is making technology more exciting than it is.
This really simple exercise was a great icebreaker but actually went to the very heart of who we are as people.
Last night in “I’m Celebrity get me out of here” we saw the most amazing team work. They were all involved in a challenge and there was no-one who did not have a role and no-one who did not perform. Albeit very different to an office situation we can learn a lot from a group of people who come together and focus on a common goal.
The 7 hallmarks of a highly effective team give you an idea of how those random celebrities are learning to work together:-
- Shared vision – food seems to be the ultimate vision instead of focusing on winning as an individual this group seem to be motivated by enjoying decent meals together.
- Clear objectives – the trials are all about getting stars and the instructions are very clear.
- Team resources used to their best – sometimes they don’t get a choice as to who to deploy, but when they do, they think about the physicality and the enthusiasm of every member of the group.
- Open atmosphere – the camp is surrounded by cameras although in previous years we have seen whispering, the team at present seem very comfortable with sharing all their stories and some of their more intimate rituals.
- The team regularly reviews its progress – there is a lot of encouragement during a trial and a lot of commentary as to how much time you have left. They chat about their experience and review their own performance.
- The team builds on experience – the trials get more horrific but the team know which critters are worse than others and seem tougher every time from learning from the last interaction.
- The team can ride out storms – when there are no stars or a camp mate is particularly down the group rally and morale lifts them. Last night showed how they can work together with tight time constraints.
The office might not be the jungle, however how many of the hallmarks can be applied to your team. As an exercise get each team member to give a score out of 10 as to where you are currently on each of the hallmarks. Revisit the score in 90 days to see if you can come up with actions to improve the score.
For a team workshop please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Our ability to sell correlates to our revenue, and yet it is hard to sell especially when in most cases it is yourself.
We must believe in what we are selling and therefore a good starting point is to decide what result the Client will get if they buy your service. Write down 3 results they will get if they buy from you:-
- By attending a nugget workshop you will think differently about the way you work
- You will look at your team with “fresh eyes”
- Practical actions from relevant training in a shorter period of time
By focusing on results you are giving them the WIFM factor (Whats in it for me?) and you have created a strategy of being customer centric.
Work out how many people you need to see each month to convert into a sale. The ratio will be high so make sure you book as many appointments or in my case coffee and catch ups. It might be 8:1, whatever the number keep a track of your conversion rate as it will help predict your cashflow.
When you get to meet them think of the flow of the conversation:-
- Build rapport
- Questioning – understand their world – empathy
- Reflect what you have heard
- Give examples
- Tell them how you can help them…
To build rapport really get to know them and remember the things that they value (holidays, family and health) very rarely is it their job.
Think of 3 key questions to follow the rapport:-
- What sort of training have you had recently?
- Who have you worked with before?
- What outcomes were you looking for from the workshops?
Reflect back answers – using case studies “From what I hear is…we have recently worked with …”
If it is not the right fit, don’t be afraid to walk away, it is not right to sell a Rolls Royce when they were in the market for a Mini.
We can appeal at three levels:-
- Aspirational – “other companies are buying our workshops”
- Emotional – “you will feel so much better having attended”
- Fear of missing out – “we only have three places left on the workshop”
Plan your new business meetings and most importantly enjoy them so that people want to work with you.