Blog2019-04-15T15:21:41+01:00

Why Training and Developing your Team is an Essential Investment

Continued training and development are important to make businesses and their workforce function effectively. The world has changed so much since the COVID pandemic sent shockwaves through businesses across the globe, and it’s now even more critical than ever in our changed ways of working to make sure that our team members are able to develop and grow to support the future of your business. This article will take you through the significance of team development as a core part of your business strategy. Ongoing development will boost adaptability Training and development will boost the adaptability and resilience of your teams and make them more likely to want to support the needs of your business. 2020 was a year when many businesses had to close offices and make the quick switch to working virtually. Companies that have maintained consistent training up until that point found that their teams were better able to switch to a virtual working environment. According to Carson Tate, employee engagement expert, many businesses, including household names like Johnson and Johnson Kraft Heinz, offered executive management programmes [...]

Holding effective Virtual Meetings

How do we make sure that meetings are effective when we’re all working at home and relying on video technology? According to Rogelberg, in his book ‘The Surprising Science of Meetings’, it’s estimated that non-managerial employees have eight meetings a week and managerial staff have 12, costing companies an estimated £100 million in lost profit each year. However, the cost of meetings shouldn't just be measured by how many hours they absorb but instead, measured by the cost to the business of a bad decision or no decision. There are plenty of methods you can use to make your virtual meetings more effective. Below you’ll find some ideas from our Effective Virtual Meetings workshops to help you to recharge your meetings and fill them with purpose. The characteristics of effective meetings There are several markers of effective meetings, including having clear objectives, getting the environment right, setting a strong agenda and focusing on continuous improvement. We’ll cover some of these below. But our words of advice as a starting point are to be brave. Virtual meetings are not so different, [...]

Adaptability for the new financial year

For some time now I have been talking about the need for businesses to be adaptable and flexible during this global pandemic.  I’ve discussed the importance of coaching and mentoring your teams to streamline productivity, alongside the need for resilience in these challenging times. A key element of adaptability that we still need to reflect on is how to approach the new fiscal year. January did not, unfortunately, deliver the positive beginning to 2021 we had hoped for but in April we embark on a new financial year which could bring with it the fresh start we all need. The insights in this article will help you to keep your business focused on planning for the new financial year ahead. Technology is Key Cutting edge technology is vital to help you keep your business competitive and progressive. COVID has compelled us to embrace the virtual environment to its fullest potential, from online meetings to complex financial contracts. Regularly updating your technology and ensuring your team is properly trained in its use will help to protect your business during this time [...]

Leading your teams out of COVID: pandemic recovery strategies

It’s perhaps an understatement to say that the past year has been a colossal challenge for businesses globally. Many industries such as aviation, hospitality, leisure and entertainment have ground to a halt, with devasting job losses despite the best endeavours of the furlough scheme in the UK. The public now has a clear message that there is a path out of the Pandemic thanks to the rapid rollout of vaccines. But what if you are a leader of a company, large or small? How can you lead your workforce out of the unprecedented difficulties COVID has left in its wake, in a way that allows your team and your business model to thrive? Looking at the following ideas will help you to pave the road back to normality. Good leadership demands the ability to adapt to changing circumstances and your employees will look to you for streamlined and cohesive thinking to resolve difficulties. An unprecedented worldwide pandemic, however, has turned everything on its head.  Frequent and clear communication is now key, even if it’s to say, “I don’t have all [...]

Ways to be more adaptive and resilient at work

“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to end, it’s about learning to dance in the rain”. - Vivian Greene. Developing the resilience to adapt to a change in circumstances and make the best of them is a vital human resource. A recent study from the University of Toronto and Cornell has shown that humans began to develop resilience and adaptability as early as The Bronze Age.  Historians have found that early human settlements in Turkey learned, over a period of years, to adapt to environmental changes, producing a variety of crops on new land which meant they could not only survive but, vitally, thrive as a species. Charles Darwin once said about adaptability, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” Darwin is of course talking about the origin of the species and the theory of evolution here, but his words still resonate in the modern business world.  Psychologist and online trainer Barry Winbolt found that those who are resilient are [...]

By |January 7th, 2021|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

Why are coaching and mentoring effective leadership techniques?

Effective coaching and mentoring are essential components in helping any member of staff to perform more effectively and helping a business to function more smoothly. As we see our economy on tenterhooks and we look over the edge of the cliff of a potential second lockdown, many businesses will welcome ideas and inspiration to lead their teams through this tough time, so this blog post runs through some ways in which coaching and mentoring are good leadership techniques. Investing in success When you’re applying coaching and mentoring techniques to develop a colleague, you’re helping them to succeed. Taking the time to carefully coach someone can seem difficult when your days are filled with important work, but the time invested in the short term is likely to lead to more productivity and effectiveness in the long term. As an article in the Houston Chronicle suggests, give positive and meaningful praise as part of your coaching and mentoring practices to boost morale and improve wellbeing. Empowerment Positive reinforcement from an effective leader allows team members to realise their full potential. Self-doubt can [...]

By |October 5th, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

Improving productivity to help you become a better leader

As we enter into a new school year, many of us are thinking about fresh starts, new routines and an all-round more productive life. Often, these ideas are fleeting, as we quickly get swamped with daily demands. But this year can be different – after almost six months of our routines being flattened by Coronavirus, it’s time for us to take charge and forge ourselves a new, more organised path. This blog post goes through some tools and techniques to help you achieve best practice and improve the way you work. Sometimes just the smallest of changes can make a big difference, so have a read, try some of our suggestions and see if these ideas could work for you. First things first Before we start, let’s remember that productivity starts at the very basics – at the bottom of Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. If you’re eating   right, exercising and getting a good night’s sleep, you’ll be more effective without even thinking about it. As you work through the tips below, remember that productivity isn’t just about doing things [...]

By |September 1st, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

How do coaching and mentoring contribute to leadership development?

A leader’s role is to give advice, guidance and direction to the people following him or her. A great leader inspires others to be empowered, creative and enthusiastic. If you can influence people to be their best, you’re already a leader, no matter what your job role or title. The best leaders in business are always learning, adapting and developing. They are looking for new ways to improve, which is where coaching and mentoring can help. This article explains why coaching and mentoring are essential as part of successful leadership development. People learn new skills in lots of different ways, but developing yourself as a leader takes more than attending training courses, reading industry publications or shadowing peers. People need to be in a learning environment where they can practice the skills and techniques they learn. Coaching and mentoring gives leaders this opportunity to practice as well as exploring issues and opportunities in a collaborative, personalised and nuanced way. An excellent coach can help a leader to understand their own strengths and weaknesses and determine how to fill any knowledge [...]

By |August 3rd, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

How diversity can drive innovation

Decades of research has shown us that diverse groups are more innovative. Diverse groups, including people from different ethnicities, races, genders, and sexual orientations, have been proven to be more innovative than homogeneous groups. This is discussed in depth by Katharine Phillips in Scientific American, who concludes that diversity and inclusivity are giving companies a competitive advantage. It’s believed that this happens for two main reasons: People from different backgrounds bring new and differing information and viewpoints. Interacting with people different from ourselves forces us to be more prepared, to have more empathy, and to expect differing points of view. This article explores diversity and innovation in more depth. What is diversity at work? Employee diversity can include people with a range of backgrounds. Staff might be a range of ages, a mix of genders, from different ethnic minorities, different races, and different sexual orientations. It can also include people with a variety of experience in life, for example, the subjects they’ve studied, the industries they’ve worked in, their career path before joining your company, and the countries they’ve chosen to [...]

By |July 2nd, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

How can you lead effectively through change?

The pace of change was already at top speed - we were always running to keep up. Now Coronavirus has given us all a level of change that we’ve never experienced before. We’re feeling scared, confused and uncertain, and we’re working as fast as we can to mitigate the damage caused and to find new opportunities as the crisis passes. It’s highly likely that your teams are feeling the same way as you. They’re worried for their livelihoods and fearing the worst. It’s your job as a leader to make sure they know how much they’re valued and understand what’s in store for them. This blog post looks at different ways you can be a better leader through this period of major change. Alleviate worries By keeping your team informed about the importance of the work they’re doing, the security of their roles and the timing of future updates, you can help them to stay with you through these tough times. Even if your team members have been furloughed, you can keep them up to date about what’s happening at [...]

By |June 4th, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

How will your business bounce back from Coronavirus?

We have a global pandemic on our hands, thanks to a pangolin somewhere in China. A single event, originated in nature, has created effects that are unprecedented and has caused ripples across the globe. Image: A pangolin. From Wikipedia Commons. We’re at home for the foreseeable future and potentially facing a very different way of living and doing business for several months. Many of us are wondering how to keep our businesses afloat in these uncertain and worrying times. This article explores opportunities that could help us to develop ourselves and our businesses. What changes can you implement? We’re all now doing things that we never thought we could. All the businesses who felt they weren’t ready to adopt the remote working trend were suddenly forced to make it happen for themselves and their employees. Government offices were already pushing hard to deliver digital transformation and have begun to make great strides much faster than ever before because this is their only option. There’s been a shift in management styles, from bums on seats and micromanagement to project [...]

By |May 11th, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

Are leadership skills inherent or learned?

We often hear the saying that some people are ‘born to lead’ but is that really true? The adage of nature versus nurture is as old as time, and unfortunately it seems the debate is as true as ever when it comes to leadership skills. Are some people ready-made leaders? Like some people seem to have innate musical abilities, or possess athletic prowess from the get-go, so it can seem that some people are ready-made leaders. We all know the type. Those who just seem to seamlessly rule the room, adopting and succeeding in their positions as they go. However, it’s unlikely they’ve been dominating the social spheres since nursery. Rather time and experience (even those unassuming moments in your memory that you might want to gloss over) have come together to build a seemingly natural leadership persona. If you looked closer you’d often see a simple mix of self-confidence, communication skills, motivation, and initiative – drawn from learned experience. Dr. Michael Maccoby, a business advisor, believes that every leader needs thee inherent qualities - purpose, passion courage. Beyond this, [...]

By |April 2nd, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

How to be more effective when you’re working from home

I have been working with clients this week who are now entirely working from home. Adapting to the new work situation and being in such close proximity to spouses and children they are finding it difficult to get more than ten minutes’ work done at a time without being interrupted or distracted. I gave them some guidance on more effective home working, which I thought you might find useful in this unprecedented time. Create your own space I’m one of the lucky few who have an office space at home, which is a real luxury. Many people don’t have this, and the ones that do are currently sharing it with partners and sometimes their older children. One friend of mine has had to create space for herself, her husband who’s also working from home and her daughter who’s home from university but still learning virtually. They’re finding it really hard to give each other the space they need in a small house.If you have a spare room that you can use to create your space, that’s great. If not, you [...]

By |March 27th, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

What are leadership theories?

Have you ever wondered how some people become leaders? Some seem ready-made for the positions, others, well, we might internally ponder how they got to where they are. Leadership theories give us a way to explain why certain people become leaders. For a long time, the typical discussion revolved around nature versus nurture, and whether some people are born with the inherent skills they need to lead. Formal leadership theories are a more recent concept that offer reasoning and alternative hypotheses to explain why some leaders are successful whilst others fail. So how can we explain what makes a good leader? This article discusses some of the main theories. The Great Man Theory We’ve already touched on the concept behind this one. The Great Man Theory, whilst lacking equality in the title, takes the stance that people are born with leadership abilities and are predisposed to lead. This theory was established in the 19th century by historians, who suggested that the world's history is a collection of biographies belonging to great men Love him or hate him, Donald Trump is [...]

By |March 10th, 2020|Categories: Leadership|0 Comments

Are leadership skills inherent or learned?

We often hear the saying that some people are ‘born to lead’ but is that really true? The adage of nature versus nurture is as old as time, and unfortunately it seems the debate is as true as ever when it comes to leadership skills. Like some people seem to have innate musical abilities, or possess athletic prowess from the get-go, so it can seem that some people are ready made leaders. We all know the type. Those who just seem to seamlessly rule the room, adopting and succeeding in their positions as they go. However, it’s unlikely they’ve been dominating the social spheres since nursery. Rather time and experience (even those unassuming moments in your memory that you might want to gloss over) have come together to build a seemingly natural leadership persona. If you looked closer you’d often see a simple mix of self-confidence, communication skills, motivation, and initiative – drawn from learned experience. Dr. Michael Maccoby, business advisor, believes that every leader needs thee inherent qualities - purpose, passion courage. Beyond this, he believes that leadership can [...]

By |November 16th, 2019|Categories: Leadership|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

What is executive coaching?

This animation describes exactly what executive coaching is, in case you’re thinking about it but you’re not sure if it’s right for you. It describes the uses and benefits and will help you to know if you would benefit from an executive coach. Executive coaches sometimes work with metaphors so, for a moment, think of a coach as your private travel guide for your personal journey of exploration and development. The guide helps you to choose where you want to get to and navigates the journey to help you get there. The journey you take with them will explore challenges, but it is your guide who will help you nurture these into results. Each journey takes a different and personal route, with distinct destinations for each traveller. The coach’s goal is to help you get to where you want to be and ultimately, be the best you can be whilst delivering the best results for your business. Your coach isn’t there to teach you, but to aid your learning and reach your peak. Athletes have coaches; why not business leaders? [...]

5 Keys Ways to Accelerate your business growth

With only four in ten small businesses surviving more than five years, it’s important for business owners to focus on continuous profitable growth. If you’re surviving the strain and running well, but you want to take it to the next level, this article is for you. Truly Understand your Customers’ Needs Ask yourself critically, do you really understand what each of your customers wants from you? You should continually consider your customer needs as it can be easy to get lost particularly when you’ve been working with a customer for a long time and lose track of what you initially set out to achieve. If you haven’t done it for a while, check in with customers and find out how happy they are with your service. If you don’t do this, your competitors may! Understand your Sales Challenges The first step to achieving business growth is understanding the sales challenges your business is facing. Are you struggling to get leads, close calls successfully or increase traffic to your website? You might be great at getting work but struggle to get [...]

What’s the difference between traditional learning and experiential learning?

Benjamin Franklin once said: ‘Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn’ Experiential learning is different to traditional learning because its purpose is to get people involved and challenge their thinking. How do you like to learn? What makes you remember things? Is it sitting and listening? Is it watching or reading? Is it taking notes? Or do you learn and remember best of all when you’re actively involved in a project or experience? Traditional teaching methods focus on transferring skills or knowledge from one person to another. This is fine and works well, but is not always the best way to engage people in learning and activate their brains effectively enough to make sure the learning sticks. Experiential learning teaches the subject and transfers the knowledge at the same time as increasing learner confidence, self-esteem and sense of purpose. Experiential learning is used regularly in scientific and medical industries because it’s clear that using real-life cases and people will be more beneficial than reviewing the theory. Just as someone learning to be [...]

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