Difficult conversations and emotional intelligence, Part Three

If you want to properly assess the appropriate ways to deal with conflict, it is best to consider examples as well as mere theory. Aesthetics are vital for learning and visualisation through past examples of a situation being resolved is a useful asset to have when thinking about difficult conversations and emotional intelligence. Many successful […]

Organisational change and the art of crocodile management, Part Three

Let’s unpack that crocodile-soothing intervention of President Roosevelt that I described last time and relate it back to organisational change. Roosevelt, of course, had no knowledge of the powerful role of the amygdala in human fear responses. However, as a polio survivor, he did know a great deal about fear and how to overcome it. […]

Egos and collaboration: Building Effective Teams, Part Three

Last time, we concluded with the core finding from the Haas Business School study: power can be beneficial for individual performances but can sabotage team performances. That’s quite a paradox for leaders, who want their teams to be as effective as possible as collective entities but not at the expense of undermining the individual creativity […]

Workplace productivity and awareness: Part three

If the example of the multi-billion-dollar tech firm I cited last week kept you awake at night, I can only apologise. However, maybe some good can come out of your nocturnal fretting and a dual individual/organisational mindset for improving productivity can be achieved. For all companies with workforces engaged in knowledge work, which is by […]

Workplace productivity and awareness: Part Two

In Part One of this series, I concluded with the apparently baffling observation that while individual employee productivity and awareness may be excellent, it simply doesn’t automatically translate at the organisational level, which can in reality be zero or even negative despite the valiant efforts of engaged, loyal and motivated employees. To explain how, I’m […]

Workplace productivity and the need for awareness: Part One

If somebody asked you for a one-sentence definition of workplace productivity, there is a good chance you would probably reply that productivity is the quantity of value produced divided by the time or cost needed to do so. It’s a serviceable enough definition, but there are good reasons for augmenting it with a twin-level approach […]

Collaboration at work

Everyone understands that collaboration at work is a good thing for an effective business, which is one reason why (according to HBR) collaborative practices in business have risen by over 50% in the past two decades. This is also because we live and work in an increasingly connected world. The virtual office now spans the […]

Emotion – the ‘elephant in the room’ in team conflict (Part 1)

Where does team conflict come from? One of the answers, of course, seems obvious once you name it: emotion. Aggressive emotion to be precise. Emotion can overheat – it’s volatile stuff – and it makes much better sense to learn to become aware of its influence, both in us and in our colleagues or bosses. Leadership […]

Ten tips for effective team coaching (Part Two)

I’ll resume my tips for effective team coaching here with a further five core tips that shouldn’t be neglected. Know your non-verbal behaviour habits. Concentrate on staying as physically composed as possible during team coaching. Coaches need to be aware of habitual non-verbal behaviours. As systems theorists have long understood, all non-verbal behaviour is simultaneously […]

Ten tips for effective team coaching (Part One)

Here are some key tips I’ve come to consider core features of effective team coaching, a process that I believe should never be confused with advising and directing. 1.    Dodge the bullet. The “bullet” comes in the form of an implicit supplication: “Solve our problem(s) for us.” It’s exceedingly tempting to fall into this role […]