Managing people can be a mixed blessing at times. They can frustrate you, almost to the point of purposeful sabotage. Many managers and supervisors get swept up in the day-to-day “must-do” that they get burnt out trying too hard getting the work out of the door. Most people know that the bulk of workplace learning happens doing the job itself, not in the sterile environment of a classroom or the 2 dimensional flat screen approach to many legislative-driven learning initiative
The combative and grumpy Jeremy Paxman has stepped down from Newsnight, the flagship BBC current affairs programme. His aggressive style of questioning raised their own questions within the hierarchy of the BBC-known affectionately as “Auntie”- and the only surprise to many observers is that he managed to stay 25 years with the organisation. The reason for this is easy to see. He was as outspoken and derogative of his employers as he was withering in his assessment of politic
At one end of the scale you have out-and-out bullying with ethical persuasion at the polar opposite. From the selfish manager who just uses her team to get whatever it is that they want to the passive-aggressive who undermines your confidence to mould you into a jelly to get their way and they want it now! This corporate world is filled with managers and leaders who got where they wanted to get to by treading on other’s heads and if that’s what it takes to stay there, then so
Here are some examples: In a negotiation, y0u are not obliged to react to every offer. You can opt to say or do nothing. Your opponent may want to “fill the silence” and start to back down from their original stance all because you did nothing. This tactic is also termed as aggressive and I would counsel against using this move. Asking a searching question of your team and then wait. If you do nothing, your team will eventually attempt to grapple with your challenge. By doing
Relationships The core of his success lies in the relationships he has with his players. He knows them intimately to the point where he knows how to get the very best from them. How he does this is very straightforward however his methods are hard to replicate. He forms strong bonds with the key characters in the club. This includes the back room staff as well as the Board of Directors. He knows, through bitter experience, how it is when relationships at Board level go wrong.
As an effective leader, your job is to spot the difference between a temporary blip in performance and a much more serious dip. You need to know about performance issues before they become a problem. There was a time when you could do this just by using your instinct or intuition and some managers still operate this way. However, times have changed. It is no longer good enough to operate using your experienced antenna as a guide to current performance levels. Let’s face it: y
Everybody lies, don’t they? From those little comments that spare someone’s blushes (white lies), to the bigger lies that can change the course of appropriate action towards a way un-required if the lie was left untold. Those little lies like: “Tell them I’m not home.” Meaning: I don’t want to be bothered seeing you right now. We lie: To keep out of trouble To have control of an issue To gain more of a reward than telling the truth Most liars think that there are greater rewa
Have you ever been paid a compliment at work and then ‘batted’ it away by saying something like: “I was only doing my job.”? We are brought up to be humble. There is something distasteful about someone who is boastful. You make sure that you are deferential to any authority. That’s perfectly reasonable but there is a catch: People don’t hear “Thank you!” Even when it is delivered with sincerity, people deflect a ‘thank you’ away with well-rehearsed lines, built over many year
Everyone has good days and bad days, don’t they? You know those days when everything seems to go wrong, when we say the wrong thing at the wrong time or do the polar opposite of what was required at that moment. As an effective leader, your job is to spot the difference between a temporary blip in performance and a much more serious dip. You need to know about performance issues before they become a problem. There was a time when you could do this just by using your instinct
My work requires me to travel extensively and when things don’t quite go to plan, train and airline staff take the anger of passengers in their stride and as part of their job role as ambassadors of their company. I always wonder what people are trying to achieve when ranting at staff about a train breaking down or as happened recently, a burst water main stopped the rail system for a number of hours. I think HR professionals have to deal with people complaining more than mos
This week is different. This week I’m in Nairobi taking a group of UN officials through their leadership paces. My energy and enthusiasm for the event has been replaced by an awareness of the dangers all travellers face. The day before I fly, an unknown number of people, maybe 30+, have been killed in a terrorist attack in Nairobi. I don’t know what the week will bring but I feel grateful for the advantages I have in the UK , even though we have suffered our share of outrages
Have you noticed that some people’s behaviour is immature at best and childish in the extreme sometimes? If you are a manager, you may have noticed that your team can “play up” and be difficult? Most children need structure in order to thrive and remain free from harm. Children require direction and encouragement when they attempt something new or complicated for them. They may not know what is needed right now, because the future doesn’t occur to them as something to think a
Emotional Intelligence isn’t just for our work. We could use E.I. to become aware of the quality of the life we already have. By thinking about and dealing effectively with the tension of “The Now” and “The Future”, we can aspire to being grateful for the life we have made and the delights of a future that our work and relationships will bring. Bob Marley understood that some people sleepwalk their way through life, thinking about the future all the time, but not experiencing
Change The Rules I was deep into the technical aspects of my laptop, wrestling with email client, defining new rules by which I would send and receive emails, and the thought struck me: wouldn’t it be neat if we just “changed the rules” in our relationships? I also want to acknowledge my good friend Bob Burgee from www.Stylemetrics.com who has also written on this subject. I have had the privilege of coaching sessions with Bob to enhance my understanding of the subtle, yet lo
The Leadership Trap
The Leadership Trap is a familiar story of success and then fading results: Senior Management want results across a number of areas and you are the one who is going to deliver these results, year after year. If not, you will have to be creative in your excuses, I mean reasons, for non-performance. As the years go by, this task becomes harder as results begin to plateau and the competition are coming up on the rails to overtake you. You know in your heart,
The Building Blocks to High-Performance Teamwork. We all know the benefits of teamwork. But, how well does your team actually work? How do you know? What are the measures you use? Are they accurate? Here are the building blocks of a high performing team from the excellent research of Mike Woodcock: Balanced Roles Do you rely on one or two people to get the work completed on time and up to standards? Or does everyone contribute towards the goals of the team? Clear and Agreed O
We are taught to think that all forms of conflict are bad. Mothers will want to smooth things over when sons fight, or daughters squabble. Managers are the same. They want a quiet time, with everything nice and calm. This is ok if you want average. This is good, if you just want good enough. Keeping out of harm’s way, putting your head below the parapet, not wanting to get noticed, all of these thoughts are the result of poor thinking. If you want excellence, a way of working
This week is Valentine’s Day on Thursday, the 14th. It is the time of year when we show our love to our nearest and dearest. Flowers and chocolates are the weapons of choice. How about loving your team this week? It won’t cost a fortune and you won’t have to take them home either! Here are 6 tips to show your team some love: Check the Environment A good clear up of the office will work wonders for people’s mood and they will appreciate your time and trouble to make things nic
Cards on the table: I’m not a fan of red tape and more regulation. You will often find me arguing long and hard for less red tape and fewer rules as I think it kills creativity. However, I have to admit that it has not gone unnoticed by me that those items that are regulated within business has a tendency to be first on the budget list when it comes to training people. Not withstanding my smouldering jealousy for my Heath & Safety Training Colleagues who ride the regulatory w
What is a competency?
A competency is the skills, experience, knowledge and observable behaviours that we use to do a job or task.
According to Daniel Goleman, there are two types of competencies:
Star Threshold competencies make the person good enough to do the job or task. Star competencies are those that, if done well, will enable the person to excel at the job or task. In a leadership context, star competencies would be: