01920 822 220
Fresh Tracks

Facilitating Adventurous Conversations

  • 01920 822 220

Blog

Welcome to the Fresh Tracks team building blog. This is a growing collection of team development news, opinions, tips and advice. We would love your input so feel free to comment or get in touch.

Page:             

1 34 35 36 37

Trust in your team

At the Fresh Tracks office we recently got together as a team look at the issue of trust.  It made me realise how much we take trust for granted when it’s there, and how much extra work a lack of trust can create.

Can a successful team function without it?

Can a successful team function without it?

Although our session included event managers, admin staff and senior managers, it was fairly informal and allowed participants to look at their own views on trust –  how and why trust is important at work and at home; what does trust mean to the individual and to the team; what would happen if there was little or no trust in colleagues.

In our team, it soon became apparent that there is quite a huge amount of trust; everyone seemed to take it for granted that they would be trusted and that they would in turn trust their colleagues. For us that makes for an easy and friendly work environment, part of the reason we choose to work here at Fresh Tracks. But it also made me realise that trust is ultimately at the heart of this office culture….

Performing under pressure

So far this year I’ve spent more hours than I care to remember trying to calm the nerves of fraught conference organisers.  Often days before the event has even started.

A great team performing under the pressure of live TV

A great team performing under the pressure of live TV

Today I spent the afternoon on the set of a live TV show.  With just two hours to air the production team managed to deal with numerous unforeseen crises calmly and confidently.

Much has been written about stress and its impact on individuals but this afternoon’s experience got me thinking about team stress.

It’s surprising how often we allow anxiety to build from within our teams, limiting productivity, stifling creativity and eradicating the fun from work….

Fresh Tracks live on Channel 4

Dan Collins has been invited onto live television to talk to the masses about team building.

Dan is live on Pauls programme on 4th March

Dan is live on Paul's programme on 4th March

As you all know, at Fresh Tracks we are passionate about how teams work and improving motivation, whether in business or socially. Therefore when we had a request from Paul O’Grady to appear live on his Channel 4 show today (Wednesday 4th March 2009) to talk about the importance of having fun at work and how to get the best out of a team, we jumped at the chance.

So if you would like to see Dan Collins run Paul and some of his production team through a team building exercise please tune into Channel 4 at 5pm today and then post a comment below and let us know what you thought.

Successful Corporate Event Planning

Most organisations are having to make every penny work for them at the moment, so if you’re thinking of holding a conference, staff away day or any other team event, make sure you consider the basics to make it work for you.

This would not be classed as a successful event!
This would not be classed as a successful event!

 Here are some handy hints to make sure you get the best out of your event:

1. Be clear about your objectives
Before you even start thinking about content, the venue or even a date, you need to establish what it is you’re holding the event for. Is it to communicate a particular message,  to announce a new initiative,  to motivate staff, or purely as a social and fun occasion? In particular, ask yourself what would a sucessful event look like? The rest of the planning – style, content and delivery – should then refer back to these objectives….

Trust me I’m an author

How to survive the recession with a little trust

Trust Unwrapped book cover

Trust Unwrapped book cover

Dan Collins founder of Fresh Tracks and co-author of Trust Unwrapped has been featured in UTalkMarketing.com talking about the effects of trust in business and suggests that rather than being a diminishing corporate value ‘Trust’ is in fact the crucial ingredient for surviving the recession.  Read the full article by clicking here.

New Leaders Needed

The days of leaders who can raise productivity and consequently profitability just by ‘managing by walking about’, patting their staff on the back and asking after the dog, are gone. 

Is Genghis Khan the ideal manager?

Is Genghis Khan the ideal manager?

In fact some would argue that relationship-based leadership was a fad or flash in the pan and now that businesses are in a battle to survive, ruthless tacticians are what’s needed to lead the team.  Luke Johnson said in today’s Financial Times : “It is becoming apparent that many leaders were really just suited to the good times. During a severe recession, when growth is irrelevant and all that matters is survival, their bullish attitude and denial of reality becomes positively dangerous .”  …

Management lessons from Masterchef

As the hit BBC series builds towards the final, I find myself in a cluster of  Derbyshire holiday cottages with a team of bright young managers about to discover more about their management style through the medium of cooking.

The original team building activity

The original team building activity

This group have given up two days of their hectic schedules to invest time in getting to know each other better and to take time out as a team.  By combining proven tools such as the psychometric Strengths Deployment Inventory along with team exercises the group will begin to bond as friends rather than colleagues.

Eating together is probably the original team building activity and when those around the table have all contributed to the feast, each mouthful is all the more satisfying.  All too often we separate our behaviour at work from our behaviour with friends more than is necessary.  Given we spend up to 60% of our waking lives with our work colleagues shouldn’t we make time to build friendships.  After all these are the people that influence our health, wealth and happiness more than any other.

Trusting Times

A nice story shows how businesses are trying to do things a bit differently in these straightened times.
Pay as you please

Pay as you please

A London restaurant, the Little Bay restaurant in Farringdon, has decided that with everyone watching the pennies, they will let their customers decide how much to pay for their meals throughout February.

“It’s entirely up to each customer whether they give £100 or a penny,” said the owner Peter Ilic. “All I’m asking is they pay me what they think the food and service is worth.”…

Just take slow deep breaths

Yesterday I had a coffee with Brian Draper, he’s been writing a book about SQ or Spiritual Intelligence. At first I assumed this was simply an obvious follow on to the much talked about IQ and EQ theories but there’s more to it than that.

Find time to relax

Find time to relax

I won’t attempt to rewrite the book here but will share one of Brian’s wise sayings. Having met some impressive theologians and thinkers over the years he reported that some of the most calm and wise men he’s come across talk about taking time to ‘overhear oneself’.

Amidst the rush of life and the endless stream of email, voicemail and online information it’s important to regularly find a period of quiet away from the chatter that fills our minds. Instead try not to think about anything, just take slow deep breaths allowing the muscles and joints from your toes to your head to relax.

Apparently taking time to ‘overhear oneself’ everyday can transform our outlook, not only removing stress but giving a more enlightened outlook on the world and people around us.

I’ll let you know how I get on.

Does strike action undermine employers trust in staff?

As the industrial dispute spreads over the use of foreign labour at the Lindsey Oil Refinery we should reflect on how this action might affect our own workforce.

Industrial desputes if not managed carefully can erode trust between employees and employers

Industrial desputes if not managed carefully can erode trust between employees and employers

The absence of strikes in recent years has given employers an opportunity to regain their employees trust.  Most employees don’t believe their employer is simply out to exploit them with no regard for them as a person.  Initiatives such as employee engagement surveys, team building days and employee incentives have all helped to strengthen the relationship between the worker and the company.

Action like wildcat strikes can begin to erode the Psychological Contract that is so important.  Especially in an era when many roles rely largely on the individual to choose to serve the businesses best interests, without close supervision.  And of course it can work both ways, the millitant soundbites from striking workers do little to support the diligent work ethic that most of us take to the office every day.

Let’s not forget that just because one employer is in a dispute with its workforce, its not to say that all staff are work shy and all employers are exploitative.

Page:             

1 34 35 36 37

Share this blog

subscribe to our RSS Feeds

Subscribe

Be among the first to get our blog posts direct to your email inbox or delivered via your RSS feed reader

Event finder question mark

Can't find what you want?

Use our Event Finder to find an event to suit your specific needs

Choose category

Browse the archives