The key to making your New Year’s resolutions work

The key to making your New Year’s resolutions work

2 weeks ago 0 0 41

Do you want to leave 2020 in the rear view mirror and make a fresh start in 2021? We often see the end of the year and the start of a new one as a time to reflect on what we have done in the year and what we would want to do differently in future. This pressure to reflect and do differently often emerges as a series of new year’s resolutions. Saying doesn’t make it so NYE resolutions are notorious for failing those who set them. Saying with conviction what you are going to do is not enough to make it happen. The statistics on how many people actually follow through and accomplish their New Year’s resolutions are rather grim. Studies have shown that less than 25% of people actually stay committed to their resolutions after just 30 days, and only 8% accomplish them. (Forbes.com). Gyms are joined, new

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Making meaning

1 month ago 0 0 67

A parent and child walk through a shopping centre and both see a man dressed in a red suit, with a white beard, sitting in a sleigh. It is mid December, and carols are pumping out of the speakers nearby. Both parent and child are exposed to the same stimuli, yet they make such different meaning from what they perceive. The child is filled with excitement and wonder and have thoughts and beliefs that are vastly different to the parent. The parent may know something different and interpret the scene in a completely different way. Neither is right or wrong – they are simply making meaning. We all attempt to make meaning from what we encounter. It helps understanding, decrease uncertainty and provide the ability to use such meaning to help predict things like this when they happen again.  Everyone starts their meaning making from what they already know –

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Making resilience real

1 month ago 0 0 160

In times of extreme change – as we have seen in 2020 – resilience becomes a key property of individuals, teams, and organisations that want to not only survive, but to thrive. Resilience is often used to describe an ‘ability to cope’ – like a spring that bends under pressure that then ‘snaps back’ when the pressure is released. As we have learned from the accelerated and amplified change of 2020 and the COVID pandemic, not everything that changes ‘snaps back’ – which means that the change pressure doesn’t go away, it remains in place and may even get greater. Consider your business circumstance through the pandemic, and in particular what has changed for your customers: What changes have occurred that will now remain as the new ‘normal’? What changes occurred that will ‘snap back’ to the way they were when the change pressure is removed? What changes have been

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A zen performance philosophy

4 months ago 0 0 381

Last week, I posted on the idea of entitlement.  This struck a chord with many readers and raised many questions. In this week’s post, I offer some ideas in what else you could do. Key points: Endeavour, Earning and entitlement are three different ways to live your life Each of these ways requires a different focus in what you do, and what you get back They also massively change the way you impact others. The large dissatisfaction that seems to be present in the world can be reframed when we consider the 3 ‘E’s of expectancy – Entitlement, earning and endeavour.  What we expect changes when we understand the nature of our expectation.  There is a mot that can be learned from Zen philosophy that can change the way we live our lives, remove distress and create more value. These three frames describe different ways to approach achievement. The first,

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Agile as a mindset or a methodology?

1 year ago 0 0 721

There is so much to be gained by using positive project methodologies such as scrum or agile. It can positively change organisations when they take on modern project methodologies that turn old ways on their heads. The problem with these approaches is when they become fixed in the business as a methodology, rather than unleashing what they can being as a mindset. Let me explain. If I use an ‘agile methodology’, then I become process bound to do ‘sprints’ and all of the other specific process elements that are described in the agile process. Sure, I can get a certificate in agile process, and then become rigid around enforcing that process in my business. I have seen one sales team that used the scrum ‘daily standup meets’ with all of the hoopla, and a complete disinterest from the staff involved. However, because it was ‘in the process’, it was put

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Should they be in charge? (Assessing leadership)

1 year ago 0 0 535

The Australian opposition just selected as new leader, and the UK Tories are currently starting the process of finding a leader to replace Ms. May and take them forward. It is likely that the people selected for these roles are not chosen on their ‘ability to lead’, but rather may other elements.  In a ‘perfect world’, how do we go about assessing leadership, both in current leaders and leadership aspirants?  In truth, people are routinely terrible at identifying and selecting great leaders. Whilst we are desperate to identify them, install them and even emulate them, knowing what will make a great leader is fraught with human error. In our desire to find and become great leaders, we often get sucked into the myth that is the cult of leadership. Why are we suckers for the cult of leadership? Humans seem to have a need to raise onto pedestals people who

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Is it time to fight your biggest enemies?

1 year ago 0 0 612

Sometimes they feel like your closest friends. They seem to want to keep you safe, keep you comfortable. But these two ‘false friends’ are your worst enemies if you want to succeed in business or in life. These old friends are fear and habit. They are insidious. They don’t walk around bold as brass. Most often they hide themselves away and ‘whisper’ into your ear. They sprinkle just enough of their magic on what you do to keep you stuck, keep you scared and keep you small. Have you ever sat in a meeting where someone says “yes, but we don’t do it that way!”. Or someone might find a way to get their point across with something like “But what if we don’t do it!” These are simply versions of your false friends speaking up to keep you stuck. There is some sort of comfort in not changing, not

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The leadership decision ‘speed trap’

4 years ago 1 0 1186

Leaders need to know the difference between haste and speed, particularly when it comes to their thinking. In modern business, we seem to be in the habit of needing to be ‘fast’ to just keep up. However, going too fast can get leaders stuck in a ‘speed trap’ that can get you and your business into trouble. Feeling pressured to make fast decisions – and even feeling that you have to make decisions for others when they can make them for themselves – can be critical leadership errors that can impact upon your leadership (and whole organisation) performance. Decision making requires an appropriate amount of thinking. What we have learned through behavioural economics and psychology, is that there are common errors inherent in thinking. These errors, although well documented, are routinely made by almost everyone. Leaders, under pressure to take decisions, often fall foul of these errors, sometimes with catastrophic

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Managing in uncertainty for high performance

4 years ago 0 0 1242

What is uncertainty? If we listen to the famous Chinese proverb: “May you live in interesting times”, we can see it as both a blessing and a curse. We are certainly living in interesting – if not uncertain – times. With Brexit, the extended time for Australian election to be decided, the rise of Donald Trump, the disagreements in the South China Sea, we can feel that there is uncertainty all around us. These uncertain times drive very specific responses. Often, these responses are not the best possible responses for the individual or the society in which they exist. How do people respond to uncertainty? When people experience uncertainty, it can mean that the person is out of their comfort zone. When there is uncertainty, people struggle to decide on what to do moving forward. They get stuck, and often have a lack of skill or strategy in deciding how

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snap out of it! – your workplace trance is stifling your performance

4 years ago 0 0 849

We can’t help it – we all get hypnotised by our circumstances. The quality of your performance and culture is often a direct result of the workplace ‘trance’ that you and your teams are in. So many people seem to get stuck in low quality ‘trances’, where poor performance is the only practical outcome. It doesn’t have to be this way, though. We can consciously choose a higher quality trance and then achieve so much more. Hypnosis works by placing people into trance. Whilst there are lots of scary ideas about hypnosis and trance, world experts in the field define trance quite pragmatically: Trance is a simply a state of focused attention. Consider when you are absorbed in a great book or TV show. People can walk in and out of the room, and you may not even notice them. You can be absorbed in the story, and instead of

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