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Posts for tag: leadership


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Should Bosses Cut Short their Holidays?

This week David Cameron has cut short his Cornish holiday, having returned home early from Tuscany a few weeks ago.

Richard Branson’s Holiday Home early on Monday morning

Richard Branson’s Holiday Home early on Monday morning

Should we interpret this as a sign of a dedicated leader putting his duty before his own need to rest with his family? Or is it a sign of a Prime Minister unable to delegate or make decisions remotely? It’s interesting the different value we put on holidays. For some of us holidays are the reason we work throughout the rest of the year; for others the August and Christmas slow-downs are simply an annoyance….

Five tips for giving better feedback

Employee engagement is undoubtedly one of the key management phrases of the moment. So it should be, with Hay Group research reporting that just 15% of the workforce is ‘highly motivated’.

The vicious and virtuous cycles of feedback

Aim for the Virtuous Circle rather than the Vicious Circle, this can positively impact productivity & profitability.

Blessing White’s 2011 Employee Engagement Report surveyed over 10,000 employees and found that 18% wanted greater clarity about their role whilst 14% wanted regular and specific feedback on performance. Both results suggest that if managers were to give regular face to face feedback morale would rise.

Gallup has found that engaged workgroups show stronger productivity and profitability, while safety incidents and absenteeism are reduced. They have calculated that these engaged organisations can achieve 3.9 times the earnings per share (EPS) growth rate compared with organisations with lower engagement in the same industry….

Seven Ways to Ask Better Questions

Getting to the heart of the matter quickly doesn’t just save time it ensures that relationships are built upon a clear understanding of the whole truth.

Ask better questions image

Don't make your staff have to turn themselves into The Incredible Hulk to get your attention.

To work effectively in and across teams it is essential to be able to connect honestly with others. Asking good questions helps to foster trust and shows genuine interest in the other person. Leaders who are able to ask better questions can expect to build stronger teams that perform at higher standards than the norm.

Whether we are engaging with customers, interviewing job candidates, talking to bosses, or requesting information from colleagues, as leaders we need to draw people out. And so often it is not a matter of what you ask but how you ask it.

Here are seven suggestions:…

What is a team?

In the 21st century we might find ourselves in multiple teams spread across different countries, from diverse backgrounds and alongside people with distinct areas of expertise.

Tug of war

This group is definitely not working towards a common goal!

These groups might be organised or informal, led or self governing, labelled as teams, work groups, families or bearing no name. The factor that makes a team is not its name or its membership. The one thing that turns a group of individuals into a true team is their common sense of purpose.

Whether they are hockey players trying score more points than the opposing side or a business looking to improve profitability, these collections of people only become a true team from the moment they agree on the same desired outcome.

“A group of people working towards a shared goal”

So, if you and your colleagues don’t share the same purpose, you are not a team. Yet…

This blog is an extract from the book:  ‘Teams – A short guide‘ (click link for a free preview of the book)

Two things that are very likely to lead to a spike in staff turnover

The latest CIPD Employee Outlook Survey reports two significant findings that, if not addressed, are very likely to lead to a spike in staff turnover:

Simple acts such as team building are vital as they demonstrate the employer's commitment to its staff

Simple acts such as team building whether that be after work in the pub, or off site with specialist facilitators are vital as they demonstrate the employer's commitment to its staff

1. In the private sector 1 in 5 employees fear that they will loose their jobs (in the public sector it’s as high as1 in 3). Given that 29 million people are currently in employment, this means that many millions of employees are insecure in their jobs and subject to de-motivation and distraction….

The Essence of Leadership

So much has been said, written and thought about leadership that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to identify what actually makes a good leader.

Be decisive in leadership

One important attribute of leadership is being decisive!

So when the BBC announced it was dedicating two thirty minute radio shows to the subject, by asking leaders from politics, business and sport what they believe makes a good leader, we had to tune in. Listen again to the programme here:  http://bbc.in/fbhJ5S.

Some of the attributes listed by the leaders interviewed included:…

Lord Sugar, The Apprentice and the cost of staff turnover

While several million people were transfixed as Lord Sugar chose his sixth apprentice at the weekend, it’s worth asking if the ‘world’s toughest job interview’ even works.

Lord Sugar and Stella English

In the pasts Lord Sugar not been able to keep hold of his 'top' performers. Will this time be any different?

Of the five apprentices ‘hired’ so far, none of them currently works with Lord Sugar! Tim Campbell the first apprentice left after two years, Michelle Dewbury lasted only 11 months in the company. The 2007 winner Simon Ambrose resigned to set up his own business, Lee McQueen won the 2008 show only to quit after little more than a year and the 2009 winner Yasmina Siadatan is now a busy new mum….

The Future Of Psychometric Tests?

Thirty years ago psychometric tests were largely administered by men in white coats and viewed by most managers with a healthy dose of scepticism. Now, most people in senior business roles will have completed a psychometric questionnaire either as part of a recruitment process or within a leadership development programme.

In recent years the number of psychometric tools has increased significantly. Quality varies hugely along with cost. A quick search on line or flick through a magazine will provide access to numerous free questionnaires, all claiming to unveil your hidden abilities and confirm your suitability to a given job role. At the other end of the spectrum you can pay several hundred pounds for a tool that will generate a ‘personal report’ an inch thick full of psychological terminology and coloured charts. Both have their place and probably contain some useful insights, if you are able to find them….


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