Was Steve Jobs's most important decision not directly product related?
On his return to Apple in 1997, one decision Steve Jobs made arguably determined their future success. Find out more...
Why Generalists are the Secret Ingredient to the Future
Does 2020 mark the start of an era where the balance between specialists and generalists comes more into equilibrium? Will the speed of change and volatility in the marketplace place more demand on generalists? We think so, read on to find out why https://bit.ly/2QXz9FA
What Have Dignity And Respect Got To Do With It?
Recently a large organisation we work with launched a Dignity and Respect workshop for its staff. Why? Well customer feedback suggested that this was an area for improvement. The workshop took 90 minutes and underlined why it's so important for customers to be treated well, and the sorts of behaviours that are expected of the organisation's staff. The result? Fuming staff. Read on to find out why.
Why Remote Teams aren’t All Plain Sailing - and How to Calm the Water #1
Have you been missing those coffee machine conversations while working remotely? Noticing that the lack of spontaneous communication has an impact on your work and relationships?
More Control is Not the Answer
Getting your team aligned is one of the most important things you can do as a team leader, particularly when your people work remotely.
I get a Notion life will be different from here on
What one app can integrate your fragmented digital life into one place, make managing projects, tasks, knowledge management content, long-term learning integration and much more so much easier and less time consuming? I think I have a Notion...
How Zoom Overdoses are Impacting Our Brains
The increase in digital communication due to the pandemic is causing a shift in our brains, impacting on things like creativity and ability to learn. Read on to find out more.
Could you be more specific please?
Remote working puts a magnifying glass on our communication. We’re no longer in the context-rich setting of an office where we pick up a lot through background conversations, non-verbal communication and chance meetings.
Lessons in Lockdown Leadership from Z-Cam
Learn how one company has managed to delight their customers during lockdown, with a combination of product development and customer engagement via social media.
Diversity & Inclusion
Leaders of the world, are you ready for this generation joining the workplace? Can you even attract them in the first place?
The ONE thing you MUST do with your team as you return from furlough
If you’re bringing furloughed employees back to work soon, have you planned on how you recalibrate your team?
On a Hiding to Nothing? The Impossible Quest for Neutrality
Is acting as a neutral vessel when facilitating truly a realistic aim? Experience shows it's impossible, so what's the next best alternative?
Excelling in Distributed Collaboration = Key Competitive Advantage
If you’ve recently moved people to work from home, how well does your culture support it? With such a significant move, without conscious focus your culture can quickly morph, and not necessarily in a good way.
Diversity & Inclusion
How equally do we Judge Female and Male Book Covers?
Whoops! New veterinary students mistake world leading research vet for a technician due to her clothes, and most likely a heavy dose of unconscious bias on their part. What do we now need to be doing in schools to support better gender balance in the workplace?
How Decision Making Unwittingly Limited the World’s Future
How you make decisions in your organisation has a huge bearing on the longer-term outcomes you bring into being. Yet for most teams and organisations we work with, this area starts out being a blind spot.
Why Poor Punctuation could be your Weakest Link
Punctuation is important, right? Without it, a string of words won’t necessarily make sense. The same goes for our work. We need punctuation points over the passage of time in order to keep some sense of reference to what we’re working towards.
Why Remote Teams aren’t all Plain Sailing – and How to Calm the Water #2
Are your results with remote working being limited by the tools you're using? It's a factor many organisations are blind to because they've always worked the way they do.
Diversity & Inclusion
Are You Ready For The Inclusion Challenge?
Did you know that despite the economic gloom around much of the world, at the moment engineers are in short supply? With emerging markets' need for qualified, skilled engineers, many organisations are having to re-evaluate their approach to recruiting and retaining talented staff, casting the net far wider than before. This then creates challenges with ensuring people from very different backgrounds feel included in the workplace.
Leaders: Right Now You Have Everything to Lose
Tough times bring our values to the fore, like a magnifying glass analysing the degree of alignment between what we say we value and our day-to-day behaviours. If you show any cracks here, it'll come back to bite you...
Small Words, Big Impact
Changing small words can have a big impact on outcomes. Discover some of the helpful recent findings from the world of Conversational Analysis, particularly applicable in the worlds of customer experience, negotiating, sales and general consulations.
What Gets Measured Gets Experienced
You’ve no doubt heard the expression ‘What gets measured gets done’, an adage which seems to hold true because the things we’re measured against typically drive our focus and behaviour. We’d like to offer a slight - but important - adaptation of this: what gets measured gets experienced. Bear with me on this: I’m not sure if it holds true all the time, and I’m sharing something here that’s still in its formative stages. However, as customer experience is becoming more and more of a differentiator amongst businesses I think it’s well worthwhile trying this modified mantra on for size.
The Ultimate Accountability Model
We’d like to suggest that the key to solving the angst about migration is to point people to the source of their experience. When countries and individuals realise that their anti-refugee stance is not caused by things that happen on the outside that they may feel a victim of, but by what’s going on with their thinking, then there’s hope.
What an Experience
How's the customer experience with your company? How easy is it for them to do business with you? How do you most want your customers to feel while doing business with you? Anxious, uncertain, annoyed, frustrated? We guess that’d be a no. Yet there are still so many businesses that continue to generate these feelings in their customers.
Habit is the breakfast of champions, but also the undoing of us when we unconsciously get sucked into less than useful habits. So where’s your focus (consciously and unconsciously)? How about the company where you work? What patterns do you notice? Are you a habitually busy person, rarely able to find time to do the important things you know you should? Do you get sucked into the busy-ness of others?
Gang fights, Bridges and Beer
What have gang fights, bridges and beer have in common? Read on and find out #OpenYourWorld
Are You Working For A Psychopath?
Surely not! But wait on a minute. Recent research for the film 'The Corporation' concludes that the closest character definition of a typical corporation is that of a psychopath. So can working within organisational values result in decent people doing things which are collectively harmful?
Come On Retail, Retaliate!
Is it all gloom and doom in the retail sector? Sir Charlie Mayfield, chairman of the British Retail Consortium, warned last week that the retail sector is facing the loss of up to 900,000 jobs and thousands of shop closures in the coming decade. This in part due to the new apprenticeship levy and the rise in the National Living Wage. Over in Europe things aren’t much different, with Swiss retailers in particular feeling the pinch due to the strong franc and the ease of buying the same product in the Eurozone at much lower prices.
Done Lean - Six Sigma? Didn't really work?
Lots of companies say they’ve ‘done’ Lean, ‘done’ Six Sigma, and with this there’s very often an associated ‘and it didn’t really work for us’ attached. When we probe a bit further, it soon transpires that whilst they had a go at it, there were lots of required ingredients that weren’t in place, and naturally, rather like baking a chocolate cake without the chocolate or cocoa, the result didn’t meet expectations. Want to get the best from applying Lean - Six Sigma in your business? Read on.
To Delight or Not Frustrate? That is the Question
There’s a world of difference between a customer experience-focussed company and a customer service-focussed company: it’s a profound cultural difference, and to make the shift from one to the other isn’t necessarily easy, but it IS possible.
The Curious David Bowie Effect
Fundamentally, this is what’s behind everything that prevents us realising our full potential: things like stress, overwhelm, anxiety, office politics, levels of busy-ness, baggage from previous encounters and so on. The performance of an organisation is a function of the quality of its people’s thinking. When the quality and clarity of thinking improves, great things happen.
Is This The Same Hotel?
Do your customers experience variation in the quality of your service or product? In the age of the experience economy, and the need to focus on customer experience, not customer service, this is such an important area. How does your company stack up?
Are Meetings Taking Over Your Life?
So many people are finding there's precious little time to do their normal job after all the meetings they have to attend. Read on to find out how come core principles for meetings can make a big improvement.
I'm Honest, Right?
The one thing followers most want from a leader is honesty. Honesty ranks head and shoulders above all the other wants of followers. It's the number one thing to get right, yet many leaders in large organisations inadvertently create an impression of dishonesty. Read on to find out how this happens.
Bringing About Organisational Change
An interview with Alastair Olby on bringing about change in organisations. When do traditional methods work, and when could you be making life easier by taking more of a cutting edge approach?
Graphic Recording and Groups: how much value does it add?
As a professional facilitator I’m very aware of the importance and value of visually summarising what’s being discussed by groups, but at the recent European International Association of Facilitators’ conference an interesting question arose. It seems to have become best practice to have a graphics expert work alongside groups to create a visual summary of what the group discusses. However for some it's not always easy to recall what's depicted. So what should we do?