Yours Behaviourally

“Reach out, Touch base & Deep dive” The most disliked phrases in business?

Please Just Say It How It Is, is an article I wrote about those phrases in business that we love to hate.  It obviously hit a nerve with people, so I asked my network on LinkedIn what were the phrases that irritated them.

The response has been incredible with over 15,000 views of the post in a week!

The top three most disliked phrases were “Reach out” “Touch base” and “Deep dive” followed closely by “Low hanging fruit”.

Below is a list of those who took the time to share there’s. Get a coffee, sit back, read, laugh or wince at them.  My personal favourite was a humorous comment by Andy Hogg.

Angela Smith “What does that actually mean?” Do we really need the word “actually” in there?

Jennifer Robson “Right sizing” – when they actually mean redundancy.

Russel Jamieson RPP FAPM “Cross-stovepipe thinking” – connecting things together.

Debbie Frith  “Let’s square the circle”….what the heck does that mean!?

Gemma Nicholls For me it’s that Americanism “double-dip” as in “let’s not double dip here” No! No I say! It just sounds wrong.

Elizabeth White-Peters, CAP/OM “Not my job!” Ugh

Claire McDonald FCIPD “Think outside the box!!”

Lorraine Stallard FEPAA “Onwards and upwards!”

Michael Garton People who say, “I don’t like saying it, but we are where we are”. Why do people use the first part of the sentence???? Either don’t say it, or get over it and use it if it works.

Robert Coles “Blue sky thinking!” Makes me want to walk out straight away and get on the beach!

Kerry Dawson FEPAA, Dip. RSA “What can we tickle out of this?” “The project was volcanic, now it’s megalithic.”  “We all need to stay within our own swim lanes.”

Carol Bell RPP Hon.FAPM One word – GRANULARITY! (meaning detail)

Paula Garsden “Push the envelope!”

Rob Whitelaw “Strong Stable Leadership”, a true teeth grinder

Jim Lythgow I was once asked if I would like to swim in someone’s ‘think tank’….I punched them I’m afraid…or did I target his ‘low hanging fruit’?..I can’t recall

Graham K Cook “Going forward” is one of my most disliked phrases. Meaningless. Is there another way to go?

Paul Walton “See You Later” spoken by someone you are unlikely to ever meet again. I think “You wanna bet on that?”

Andrew Kain “Well, I would just like to Segway this suggestion into your swim lane.” I heard that recently… I mean seriously, what on earth was the point of saying such a sentence. I now look at that person as a clown, red nose, big shoes and all.

Sue Reed TAP.Dip, ABLD, MInstSMM, CIoM, ACIPD “I’m a Team Player” – you show people by your actions and behaviours not by telling them you are a Team Player. Your actions show the results.

Paul Harvey “If I’m being honest”…….what!?…So up until now in this conversation, am I to assume you’ve been telling lies?!

Björn Graf von Westarp Everything starting with “sustainable”…as “sustainability” is treated in 99% of all cases very unsustainable…

Sam Haggerty “Keep your powder dry”…. eugh!

Carrie L. Mittelstadt “Skin in the game.” I remember one project meeting where it was said over and over. I stopped counting after 15 times. In one two hour meeting!

Emma Gilbert “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water” ……what on earth??!!!

Nicholas Skidmore “I would like you to furnish me with a quotation.”

Kevin Kelly We should “touch base.”

Curtis James Watson “When’s the best time to catch him?”- I don’t believe he’s falling out a window so you’ll probably never need to catch him!

Sarah Gate “Going forward”. Ugh. My favourite one is “Kick this into the long grass.”

Gavin Micklethwaite “This is where the rubber hits the road.” “Deep dive.” “Have a conversation with” meaning reprimand. “Slice and dice” meaning analyse data. “Hold his or her feet to the fire.” “Let’s park that.”

Laura Redfearn “Touch base”. Yuck! “Hit the ground running.” is also grating.

Stuart Sibcy “Never assume… it makes an…” Urgh. I can’t even bring myself to write it.

Pete Sutton “No offence but….”

Simon Slack “Let’s take that offline”

matthew townsley “Well where do I start.” “At the end of the day” (it’s bed time)

Stephen Heaton How about “Worst case scenario”, “Let’s run it up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes it.” or my personal favourite “Reach out”.

Frances McConnell “Game changer.” (is it just me?)

Andy Hogg That ghastly Americanism that has crept like strangle-weed into our lexicon – “Reach out to”. If you’re in a meeting with The Four Tops then it’s acceptable, otherwise, please say “Get in contact with”.

Rod Fraser “Grab the low hanging fruit.” “Let’s not boil the ocean.” “Like nailing jelly to a wall.”,are all the preserve of the workplace tosser.

Alice Davies “Singing from the same hymn sheet”. No one is singing. It would make meetings a lot more interesting however…

Steve Broadfield  “Not to worry, there is enough money in the job.”

Emma MacPherson “What this country needs is a strong and stable leadership”. Sets my teeth on edge.

Daryl Wake “That serious workplace accident was a one in a million chance.”

Eileen Hill “Touch base.” argh!!

Bob Riley “Let’s take a helicopter view and racquet it out to divisions.”….Que? “What’s your ETA for departing?” “This is going to sound silly.”…then don’t say it.

Jay Compson “HOT JOBS”

Drew Hill  “Let’s not reinvent the wheel”. It’s usually taken to mean “Let’s not bother with the evidence, or detail, and just steal someone else’s idea”. The wheel may be fundamental, but wheels need to be designed for the task, fitted, trued, and maintained.

Bruce Layden “Synergies.”

Brian Bendel “Low hanging fruit.”

Philippa Lunn I hate “let’s have a three line whip”! I mean we’re not in parliament so why use that to stress the importance of the meeting!

Colin Smith “At this moment in time there’s nothing on the table.”

Karl Christy AIOSH. “We’re not here to apportion blame but….” knowing that what normally happens next is the blame game

David’ Parkinson “Just don’t pick up the first drink and you can’t get drunk.”

Owen McNally “We have always done it like this/that/this way”

Christine Armstrong Being referred to as “you people”. Very patronising and distancing!

Clare Bamberger “Going forward.” Is there any other direction we can go in?!!!! Or do we mean “From now on” as in we used to do it one way but from now on it’ll be different?

Rachel McGrory (BSc) “Can I pick your brains.” Makes me want to eat my own head as well as “Keep your eyes peeled”…..technically not really meeting material but the amount of times I’ve heard these phrases in the workplace…..yack

Tommy White 110%

Steve Richards “Have you reached out to HR?” “We’ll need a ‘drains up on this?” Always used to hear this after a major cock up!

Lisa Dellow ‘It is what it is’ What a rubbish saying, what does it mean? I find it so dismissive.

I hope that you’ve enjoyed reading these.  Whilst you are here, please do spend a few moments to read some of the other articles that have been written and published to help individuals and teams achieve even greater success.

If you like them, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts plus, help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing the site with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like To Be Featured And Pay It Forward To Help Others?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Communication Chaos by Sohail Ahmed

Sohail Ahmed Mentor My Way

I’d like to introduce our PIFPAL (Pay It Forward Pal), Sohail Ahmed, who is Director of Mentor My Way.  Sohail lives in Delhi, India and his passion in work is in creating and fostering entrepreneurship among the youth and helping people realize their real self and helping them work to reach their true potential.

Outside of work, Sohail likes to spend time with his family and his 10 month old daughter.  He also enjoys exploring new places, meeting new people and understanding their behaviours, culture & values.

Sohail’s claim to fame is that he featured in Marquis Who’s Who in the World 2014, which is regarded as the foremost chronicler of Human Achievement.

You can find out more about Sohail via his LinkedIn Profile

Which of the 16 Team DyNAmics© Elements does your post support?: TRANSFORMATION

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Creative InteractionsHow Will It Help Others?: If teams are to continue to succeed, they must regularly review what and how they work together to understand what is working well and not so well.  As communication between team members plays such a vital part, this activity focusses on this and helps foster discussions around what could be done better in the future.

How long will it take?: 30 minutes

Resources required: Building bricks (Lego or similar) with at least 3 different colours (i.e. red, white and blue). Instructions for each of the participants (as described below).

What to do: 

Participants must build a shared tower using the building blocks provided. Each member of the team is working from their own instructions that the others are not aware of. They cannot talk throughout the activity.

The instructions should be placed on a separate piece of paper for each participant and should either be from the list below or variations on the same theme.

Person 1: Your tower must be fourteen blocks high

Person 2: Your tower must be built with blue and white blocks

Person 3: Your tower must be built with blue, white and red blocks

Person 4: Your tower must contain at least 20 blocks

Person 5: Only you may build the tower

Person 6: The third row of your tower must be blue

Depending on how may are in your team, you may need to add further instructions, or you could always have some of the team observing their colleagues and making notes.

The Rules:

Participants must not share their instructions with each other at any point.

Participants must not talk throughout the activity.

At the end of the 30 minutes, have the team rate their effectiveness on a 1-10 scale (1 meaning you didn’t work well together, 10 meaning you were extraordinary). Discussion should then be opened up about.

How did they communicate?

Were there any leaders throughout the activity?

What difficulties did they face?

What frustrations, if any, were there?

How did they feel throughout the activity?

What worked? What didn’t work?

What would they do differently next time?

Finally, and this is where it links with Transformation, the team should generate ideas on how their communication could be made more effective by using the lessons learnt from the activity.  Ideas should be expanded upon and can be challenged by other team members.  If the team agrees an idea is good then they discuss who will lead it being implemented,  how and when they will implement it, how will they know it has been successful and when will they review it.

Many thanks to Sohail for Paying It Forward.

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts plus, help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like Help Others And Feature In Pay It Forward?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Please, Just Say It How It Is (3 minute read)

Yours Behaviourally Ngagementworks Nick Fewings Please

I don’t know about you but I just love a bit of blue-sky thinking and then running it up the flagpole before reaching out and touching base with my clients to see if it floats their boat.  Apologies for the sarcasm.

However, we’ve all experienced this jargon in work.  Sat in your weekly team meeting and your leader tells you that you’ve got to focus on “low-hanging fruit” Or receiving an email from the CEO who states, “To remain competitive, we’ve got to think outside the box.”  That meeting with a client, where they use a phrase that irritates or annoys.  The director, speaking at the staff conference who speaks in clichés.

Often these phrases or business jargon, cause more damage than good.  We switch off from the real focus of the message being communicated, instead, trying to spot the next phrase the person uses, or indeed dismissing what they say completely.

A survey by Institute of Leadership & Management, in the UK, revealed that these phrases are used in almost two thirds (64%) of offices, with nearly a quarter (23%) considering it to be a pointless irritation. “Thinking outside the box” (57%), “going forward” (55%) and “let’s touch base” (39%) were identified as the top three most overused pieces of jargon.

I’ve experienced this situation on many times, when facilitating team development workshops or speaking at conference, when someone has uttered one of these phrases.  You just need to look at the expressions on other people’s faces around you to see the irritation caused.  I can guarantee that you won’t be alone.

Sometimes, it is not just the words or phrase used, it is also the meaning behind them.  I once worked with a strongly-opinionated leader who regularly used the phrase, “In my opinion, I think we should do…”  The meaning behind it was “this is what I want to happen.”

They were such a strong character, that many staff did not challenge them.  They regularly used this phrase, until one day, someone did challenge them and everyone found out that the leader had no substantive evidence to back up their opinion.  Whenever it was uttered in the future, staff were sceptical and dismissive about what the leader said and their intention.  Ultimately, the leader lost the respect of a large amount of their staff.

Just imagine if these phrases were used at home with your family or partners!!  “I think we should take our holiday discussions offline and initially reach out and touch base with our friends to do some blue sky thinking about our next holiday destination.”

So a plea to all those who use such phrases,

PLEASE JUST SAY IT HOW IT IS

Below are a few of my favourite irritating phrases submitted by some of my connections on LinkedIn:

Phrase                                                                                          Actual Meaning

At the end of the day                                                         This is the situation we are faced with

We need to deep dive                                                         Let’s have some more detail

Right-sizing                                                                           Redundancy

Cross-stovepipe thinking                                                 Connecting thoughts together

With all due respect                                                            I disagree with what you’ve said

Reach out to                                                                           Get in contact with

Let’s take this offline                                                          Can we discuss this later?

Let’s square the circle                                                        Try to do what is thought impossible

Are we all signing from the same hymn sheet          Do we all agree?

Thank you to all those people who responded to my initial question on LinkedIn and who prompted me to write this article.

So what is the phrase that irritate you the most, and importantly, what should people be saying instead?  I’d love to hear yours, so please do leave a comment below.

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Help Others

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts.  In addition, why not help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like To Feature In Pay It Forward?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Can I Help You And Your Team Achieve Greater Success or Speak At Your Conference?

If you want to discuss how I may be able to help you and your team my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

If you want to find out more about the Team DyNAmics© Model and how it is making a positive difference to team engagement and effectiveness, please use this link.  Team DyNAmics©

 

A heart-warming story of how “Paying It Forward” helps others

Pay It Forward Yours Behaviourally Nick Fewings

As you may know, I’m passionate about helping both individuals and teams develop and achieve even greater success.  One way that I do this is here, via Yours Behaviourally, sharing hints and tips and featuring articles written by others.

Recently, I wrote and published a 2-minute article called “7 Tips To Help You Speak Up About Bad Behaviour”, prompted by a Workplace Bullying survey completed by the Executive and Personal Assistants Association, headed up by Victoria Darragh.

The results of the survey shocked me in terms of how much bad behaviour/bullying still goes on in the workplace, how little some organisations do to tackle it and the negative impact that it has on individuals which also impacts their families.  Having read it, I felt compelled to write an article that may help those experiencing bad behaviour or bullying in the workplace.

One person, who will remain anonymous, to respect their privacy, took the time to contact me personally.  Here is an extract of their reply to me.

I wanted to reach out to thank you for the article you wrote. The article was so helpful to me. I have been struggling with a difficult boss for the last couple of years. I tried many times to give them feedback but they would always find an excuse and make it my fault.

Your article appeared on my newsfeed before a 1:1 meeting with them.  I took the approach of explaining to them how they made me feel and how they came across. It didn’t matter whether they saw an issue in their behaviour or not it was how they made me feel that was the issue.

They listened and whether they adjust their behaviour in the future, we will see HOWEVER, I feel empowered and I’m glad I did it. So, I wanted you to know you helped me and thank you. As my mother always says we are all too quick to complain and rarely say thank you. This is why she goes into the kitchen of a restaurant after a good meal and thanks the staff!!

I am absolutely thrilled that the article I wrote and “Paid Forward” has had such a positive impact on the life of another person and I’m hoping that their boss changes their behaviour and starts to mend broken bridges.

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Help Others

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts.  In addition, why not help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like To Feature In Pay It Forward?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Can I Help You And Your Team Achieve Greater Success or Speak At Your Conference?

If you want to discuss how I may be able to help you and your team my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

If you want to find out more about the Team DyNAmics© Model and how it is making a positive difference to team engagement and effectiveness, please use this link.  Team DyNAmics©

 

Performance Scales by Tony Reeves

I’d like to introduce our PIFPAL (Pay It Forward Pal),Tony Reeves Director Level 7 Expertise Ltd

Tony Reeves, Director at Level 7 Expertise Ltd.

In work, Tony is passionate about making a difference where others say it can’t be done and outside work, he has a passion for music.

Tony says that the song that sums up his life is “Summer of 69” by Bryan Adams and his claim to fame is that he once appeared on Westward TV as a child, singing in a group with a local entertainer! Thankfully this was before YouTube!!!

You can find out more about Tony via his LinkedIn Profile.

Which of the 16 Team DyNAmics© Elements does your post support?: ROLES AND SKILLS

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Framework MappingHow Will It Help Others?: This is a useful exercise that helps you to understand individual and team performance, identify areas that will most help improve output, and will inform training and development needs. It should be noted that this is not a formal appraisal system but we found it enormously useful in improve collective performance and developing mutually supportive working relationships within our team.

How long will it take?: 1 hour in total

Resources required: A whiteboard and multiple coloured whiteboard markers. A camera or phone to capture the results. Your team (with no nominated leader). A willingness to be open, honest and accepting of feedback.  A willingness to take action on the results

What to do: 

First, you must decide as a group the four key characteristics of what makes you good at what you do; this alone can generate a lot of discussion so it would be wise to make this decision ahead of time.  As we are a consultancy business, we picked:

Technical Subject Matter Expertise,  Consultancy Skills, Project,Programme and Portfolio Management, Business Development.

It’s important that each team member agrees that the categories are correct. Egos and seniority are left outside the room! This works best when everyone acts as peers, regardless of their actual position in the team or company.  You can use more than four categories if you wish, but we found beauty and effectiveness in the simplicity of the model.

Development ScalesThe next step is to draw a simple set of axes, (i.e. a ‘radar’ diagram) for each person present.  The scale runs from zero at the centre to five in each direction, and assign one of your categories to each axis.  I’ve attached an example which includes self- and peer-assessment markings.

Each team member then carries out a quick self-assessment and assigns themselves a grade for each category. It’s important that this is not discussed or challenged, and must be as honest an appraisal that the individual can provide.  The grades are marked on the axes, and joined to make a simple trapezoidal shape.

Then the remainder of group should discuss and agree their collective grade for each category for the individual, and mark them on the axes, again joining the dots to make a trapezoid.  Even with a simple 0-5 scale, we found that it is rare for the two shapes to be identical!

The individual and group should then discuss the scores and in particular pay attention to any major differences of opinion.  It is interesting to see who under- or over-values their grades! This discussion should be moderated by the group and not the most senior person in the room, as this can throw up some real surprises.  The exercise can also indicate where our people want to be better at a particular skill or professional practice, as their self-assessment can be led by their aspirations rather than full self-knowledge. The exercise is then repeated for each member of the team.

It’s important to keep the discussions short and to the point as one hour can pass very quickly!

Once the full set of diagrams have been discussed and agreed, the last step is to pick one single area for each person in which development would either benefit the individual, the team, or (ideally) both; this naturally feeds your training and development programme.  This can also pose some interesting questions as the team’s view of what would benefit the collective performance may not match with the individual’s thinking. This is an important point as the whole exercise is designed to focus on improvement to team performance.

Any other relevant information?

I would say that this exercise brought us much closer together as a professional, supportive team and led to a marked and measurable increase in performance.

Although this was a classroom exercise using a whiteboard, the discussion alone was worth the investment in time.

I hope you have fun with this exercise and that your teams see the benefit of contributing as much as they can. The adage that ‘you only get out what you put in’ is very true…

Many thanks to Tony for Paying It Forward.

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts plus, help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like Help Others And Feature In Pay It Forward?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Lessons From High-Performance Leadership (5 minute read)

When I worked for Barclays in a leadership position, I had the opportunity to bring my teenage daughter to work for a week, as part of her school studies. During the week, Beccy met many people in my 30-strong team, getting an insight into what they did and also helping them with some of the tasks that needed to be completed.

At the end of the week, I asked Beccy how she had found the experience. She said she had found it extremely positive. I then asked her if she had any questions. She said, “Yes, you have an office and I noticed that you keep your door open almost all of the time but are very rarely at your desk, why is that?”

My reply was simple, “I am doing my job.”

The main focus of those who are successful leaders, is building positive relationships.  They support the development of individuals, create high-performing team cultures and excel at stakeholder management, all of which cannot be effectively achieved by sitting in an office behind a desk.

Task Relationships

Whilst leaders need to develop their team strategy, purpose, vision and goals, this should only be about 20% of their time, with the other 80% focussed on building positive relationships and a team culture that supports achieving business objectives.

As a leader and also working with leaders, helping them to create high-performing teams, I have been able to study and understand what these leaders do that helps them in their focus on relationships. I have identified four things that they excel at.

1. They know themselves. 

Usually by using a highly-regarded psychological assessment tool and coaching. They understand their strengths and challenges, their communication style and decision-making preferences, how they are likely to lead others and blind spots. In doing so, this supports them in…

2. Knowing their team. 

As a leader, it is vital to understand who you have in your team. Do team members have complementary skills? Who is good at what? How effectively do they collaborate with each other? What other people may you need to call on who are not part of your team? How effectively do they work as a team?

3. They adapt their style. 

The old adage rings true, “Different strokes for different folks.” You need to know what motivates and engages individuals, how they like to be lead, their challenges and how they can be supported to overcome these and adapt your leadership style accordingly.

4. They build a team culture that supports success. 

In the Team DyNAmics© Model I have created, based on my knowledge and experience of working with leaders and their teams, I have identified 16 elements that leaders manage effectively to achieve high-performance in their team. They also review these regularly, discuss challenges with their teams and support their teams in developing ideas and practical solution to overcome these challenges.

And does the above correlate with what team members want?  Yes is the answer. I undertook a survey via LinkedIn, asking the question, “What attributes did they want to see in their leaders?”. The top four answers were, Visionary, Passionate, Empathic and Honest. All of them relationship based.

Ngagementworks Leadership Atrributes Survey

Personally, I believe that in some instances, the technological revolution that has occurred over the last 30+ years, has had a detrimental effect on leadership, with some leading through technology.

We must not lose sight of the fact that success is not achieved through programmes, software, charts or apps but through the positive relationships that we build with others that enable us to work collaboratively with others to achieve win-win outcomes, hence why leaders need to focus on succeeding through relationships.

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Help Others By Paying it Forward

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts plus, help others and Pay It Forward by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Can I Help You?

If you want to discuss how I may be able to help you and your team achieve even greater success by facilitating team building or by me speaking at your conference, my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com , my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

If you want to find out more about the Team DyNAmics© Model, please use this link.  Team DyNAmics©

 

 

Leadership

Something to reflect on…

Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Leaders 030517

How To Stop You Wasting Money On Team Building

Ngagementworks Yours Behaviourally Money

We all want to work in a team that is successful, don’t we?  Hopefully your answer is yes.  Working as part of a great team gives us a positive buzz, a sense of belonging and motivates us to do our jobs to the best of our ability, and in doing so, help the team succeed.

Great teams don’t magically happen, they develop into great teams by investing quality time away from their day to day roles, to focus on developing positive and collaborative relationships between each other and understanding how effectively they are working together and what they need to change to become even better.

However, a lot of money and time is wasted by teams who do not invest in the right sort of team-building.  Thinking that a “bit of fun” will have a marked difference on individual and team performance is so far from the truth. Whilst some of the team may enjoy such an event, some won’t and the feedback will be mixed and any benefits will be short lived.

So what can you do, to ensure that your team-building makes a positive difference and gives you a long-lasting return on your investment?

1.  Gather Data & Information

Early on in my career, I heard a leader say that “In business, data is king.” How true, if we can measure the effectiveness and engagement of how our team operates, we can understand what’s going right and what’s going wrong.

Teams invariably measure deadlines, costs, quality, timescales, budgets, risks and resources. Herein lies the problem.  In a lot of cases, teams do not measure or understand those individuals that make up the team or the effectiveness of how those individuals work together collectively.

It is people who deliver results and therefore it is vital that we gather data and information on the people within our team and how they work collaboratively as a group.

2.  Know Who You Have In Your Team

How can you expect your team to succeed, if you don’t know who is in your team? You need to not only know their technical skills but also their behavioural skills, which will have an impact on the strengths/value they bring to the team, their communication style, how they make decisions and their challenges.

Using a highly-regarded personality profiling tool will enable you to achieve this. In addition, it will help you understand the team as a whole and provide you with vital information on how the group is likely to make decisions, generate ideas and how to maximise communication effectiveness between individuals and in group situations. The former is influenced by the psychologically preferences that Carl Jung termed Thinking and Feeling (how we make decisions) and the latter by Jung’s attitudinal functions of Introversion and Extraversion (which impacts on communication).

Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Team

3.  Invest in Team-Building That Focusses On Business Issues AND Can Be Measured

Before you invest in team-building, you need to have clarity on what you want to focus on, why this is important and what changes you want to see. For instance, if your team-building involves making structures out of spaghetti and marshmallows, or building rafts or climbing trees, you need to be clear at the outset as to what business issues these experiences will help you overcome and ensure the team understand this as well. If you aren’t clear, the return on your investment will be greatly diminished and this will have a limited positive impact.

In addition to clarity on the objectives of the team-building you undertake, you should also be defining what success looks like and how this can be measured to ensure it is achieved.

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Comparison

4.  Create Connectivity Through Purpose

The most important element that needs to be addressed if you want to achieve high-performance is Team Purpose, why the team exists, what this enables and the benefits. Teams that have achieved clarity and agreement on their Team Purpose, have a much higher Engagement Score than those where it scores lower down the 16 elements.

5.  Build Trust Through Personal Experiences

Trust is the second most important element in the Team DyNAmics© Model. Trust takes time to nurture and you should provide opportunities for this to happen on a regular basis when your team meet. At your next team meeting, get everyone to share an unusual fact about themselves that other team members may not know or get everyone to write down the name of every other team member and then get them to speak to everyone and find a common connection with each one. There are many activities you can undertake to build Trust however these are a couple that are effective and simple to implement.

Team DyNAmics Heart Ngagementworks

6.  Involve The Team In Agreeing Solutions

It is important that the team take ownership and responsibility for discussing issues, generating ideas to overcome these issues and then implementing them. Collective ownership of both the issues and the solution further helps to strengthen the emotional bonds between team members.

7.  Review And Repeat

Whilst it is important to get some quick wins in how the team operates to generate momentum and positivity, long-term success will not happen overnight. High-performance in teams is only achieved through regular review of how the team operates and continued tweaking of your strategy.

So, in conclusion, if you want to increase the chances of team success and develop a high-performing team, you need to invest in understanding who is in your team, team-building that helps you and your team overcome business issues and agree on measures that will help you know when success has been achieved . If you don’t, you could end up wasting a lot of time and money for little positive return.

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Help Others

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts.  In addition, why not help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like To Feature In Pay It Forward?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Can I Help You And Your Team Achieve Greater Success or Speak At Your Conference?

If you want to discuss how I may be able to help you and your team my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

If you want to find out more about the Team DyNAmics© Model and how it is making a positive difference to team engagement and effectiveness, please use this link.  Team DyNAmics©

If you want High-Performance, balance the Tasks with the Relationships

When your team gets together, what do you discuss?

This has been one of the questions that I have been asking delegates at various conferences at which I have been presenting on “How To Achieve High-Performance In Teams”.  The conferences in question have been in front of audiences made up of leaders, project management professionals and personal assistants.   I hope you agree, a varied audience in terms of roles, skills and sectors.

Frighteningly, the responses have had a marked similarity.  Below are the top responses:

Budgets, Schedules, Operational Issues, Risks, Service Performance, % of Complaints, Milestones

Do you notice anything about the above?  Yes, hopefully, you have spotted that they all focus on tasks, things we need to do to achieve our goals.  Additionally, they are all measureable.

Way down the list of responses and very infrequent were as follows:

Inter-personal relationships, communication, collaboration, trust, commitment, effectiveness of meetings. 

All to do with relationships and therefore not as easy to measure however, equally as important as focussing on the task, especially if you want to achieve high-performance.

So, it appears that in many teams the focus is very much on the task.

Measurements, software, Gannt charts and spreadsheets in themselves do not achieve goals, people do.

And the results of the question I ask at conferences, correlates with the initial results that I have observed from many of the teams that utilise the Team DyNAmics model of effective team engagement that I have created, a skew towards task as opposed to relationship.

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Ordered

Why is a balance between Task versus Relationship important?

Too much focus on task may result in burnout of individuals, as they strive to hit deadlines and goals.  Ultimately, they may go off sick or indeed their engagement will reduce so much that they leave the team.  Also, success is often not celebrated, as the focus is the next achievement or deliverable.

Too much focus on relationships on the other hand can lead to a group of happy team members who lose sight of what needs to be achieved. Decisions being made that focus on the harmony of the team as opposed to what the organisation need.  Stagnation as the team remain in their comfort zones and don’t strive for excellence.

If you think that your team has an imbalance between task and relationship focus, the first thing to do is speak up and raise the issue.

High-performing teams understand what the purpose of the team is, and through the strength of the positive relationships they have with their colleagues, combined with appropriate skills, processes and technology, collaborate effectively to achieve success.

Wishing you continued happiness and success in both work and life.

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Help Others

If you’ve found this article of interest and value, please use the Follow option in the right side panel to ensure that you are informed of future posts.  In addition, why not help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing it with those who may find it useful.

Would You Like To Feature In Pay It Forward?

If you have some effective learning that would help either individuals or a team and want to be featured in the Pay It Forward Initiative, I’d love to hear from you.  The only criteria are (1) the learning is effective, (2) it takes no longer than an hour to undertake, (3) you don’t need too many resources, (4) you are able to share it freely.

If you do, please email me via  nick@ngagementworks.com or give me a call on 00447966306903 or use the Contact Form

Can I Help You And Your Team Achieve Greater Success or Speak At Your Conference?

If you want to discuss how I may be able to help you and your team my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

If you want to find out more about the Team DyNAmics© Model and how it is making a positive difference to team engagement and effectiveness, please use this link.  Team DyNAmics©

 

 

 

 

 

Recognising The WOW! Factor In Customer Service by Derek Williams

Derek Williams WOW Awards

I’d like to introduce you to our PIFPAL (Pay It Forward Pal), Derek Williams, CEO of The WOW! Awards.  Derek is passionate about great customer service and people being spotted doing something right, and being recognised and appreciated for providing customer service that has the WOW! Factor.

Outside of work, Derek’s passions are cars, family and cars!!  A song that sums up Derek is “Walking On Sunshine” by K.C. and The Sunshine Band and his claim to fame is that he has done numerous TV and radio interviews.

You can find out more about Derek via his LinkedIn Profile.

Which of the 16 Team DyNAmics© Elements does your post support?: DIVERSITY

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Emotional RelationshipsHow Will It Help Others?:  By providing them with a way to recognise and appreciate others who’ve excelled at providing excellent customer service with the WOW! Factor.

How long will it take?: 1 hour in total

What to do: Recognise someone in your team who has given outstanding service, creating the WOW! Factor.

Giving a gift to someone, not only makes the other person feel good but it is also a great feeling to give that gift. Often though we overlook appreciating others for what they do and the service they deliver.

So here is an opportunity to give a gift of recognition to someone who you feel has given outstanding customer service and in doing so, has delivered the WOW! Factor.

Before you nominate someone for a WOW! Award there are just 3 simple criteria that must be met:

  1. The nomination has to be something that makes people go WOW! due to first class customer service.
  2. It must be a genuine experience that has happened to you personally.
  3. The nomination needs to be about a recent experience.

If all the above criteria are met, to make a nomination, please go to:

https://www.thewowawards.co.uk/wow-awards/make-a-nomination/

Follow the instructions.  When you get to the field “How did you hear about The WOW! Awards?”, please choose “Other” from the drop down menu and in the Event/Other field put “Pay it Forward”.

Our independent judges will read the nomination and will issue you a certificate.

Print the certificate off, have it framed and present it to the team member. Do it loud and do it proud , take a photo,  have cake, make a fuss.  The most senior member of management should present the award.

Watch the reactions….  (No financial reward should be attached.) This is about recognition.

The first 20 people to nominate an employee will receive this free of charge.

Many thanks to Derek and The Team at  The WOW! Awards for helping others to Pay It Forward.

Would you like to Pay It Forward, by sharing some learning that will help others?  If so, I’d love to hear from you via nick@ngagementworks.com

Yours behaviourally, Nick