Yours Behaviourally

Location, Location, Location: The Importance Of A Positive Learning Environment

Beijing Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Screen

Think about the learning that you’ve undertaken, what makes it stand out and why do you remember it?  The content and how is was facilitated no doubt spring to mind and are important but equally important is the environment in which the learning took place.  Even after 50 years, I still have happy memories of school outings to learn at a museum, farm or ancient castle and I’m sure you do as well.

Research on learner engagement reveals that a positive learning environment leads to endorphins being released into our blood that in turn gives feelings of euphoria and stimulates the frontal lobe of our brain. Essentially, learning becomes a pleasurable experience.

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Creative InteractionsCreating the right learning environment is therefore vital in developing high-performance teamwork and why it is one of the 16 key elements of the Team DyNAmics© Model.

Whether it’s a team-building workshop or a conference you are arranging, the location you chose, is a key factor in the overall experience of those attending. Get it right and you enhance their experience and they will remember the learning for a longer period of time, get it wrong and those attending will feel undervalued and will no doubt tell you via feedback.   So what are the things to consider when booking a venue for training or a conference?

Well last week, I was fortunate to be at Deer Park Country House Hotel, near Honiton in Devon and I have used this as an example.

1. First Impressions Count

We are very visual, so on arrival at the venue, will the initial look give those attending the WOW factor?

Deer Park First Impressions Ngagementworks

2. How Are You Greeted By Staff?

Are the staff friendly? Do they treat you in a professional but personable manner?  Do they listen to your needs and try to find solutions to meet those needs?  Sometimes, you don’t need to even speak to the staff, just sit down and look around you at how they go about their jobs and listen to them interacting with other customers.  Also, don’t feel shy to ask how they enjoy working at the venue and how long they have worked there.

3. What are the learning facilities like?

If it is team building, do they have rooms conducive to a positive learning experience?  If it is a conference, will it comfortably cater for the amount of delegates expected?  Can they cover the technology needs you require? Screens, AV etc.

Deer Park Facilities Ngagementworks

4. What are the break-out and dining areas like?

It is important that whilst not in the main training or conference room that there are areas that will enable delegates to sit and relax in smaller groups and also have refreshments.

Deer Park Breakout Ngagementworks

5. Do they have facilities for those with disabilities and the ability to cater for those with special dietary requirements?

6. If overnight accommodation is required, does this meet your needs and what is there for delegates to do in their free time?

Deer Park Leisure Ngagementworks

7. How close are travel links?  Are there any pick-up/drop-off options?

Deer Park Classic Car Ngagementworks
Deer Park Country House and Hotel is close to both Exeter Airport and Honiton Railway Station (direct route from London Waterloo), as well as just being off the A30, however, they can even pick you up in one of their collection of classic cars.

 

8. Costs

Obviously, budget needs to be taken into account however, in my experience, a lot of venues that provide an environment that really enhances the learning experience or conference, for delegates and gives them the WOW-factor, are often not too dissimilar in price to large brand hotels with standard training rooms and conference facilities.

What venues have stuck with me?

As a team-building expert and international conference speaker, I have had the opportunity to experience in excess of 1,000 different venues. With team-building, the ones that I have experienced and stick out are the opulence of the Ritz-Carlton, Bahrain, the more austere and surreal setting of a Bedouin Tent in the middle of the Saudi Arabian desert, training at the top of a Swiss Mountain, leadership development on board racing yachts in the Solent and on the lower decks of an 18th Century battleship, the Morgan Car Factory, Royal Armouries and an adventure park.

Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Venues 2

Speaking at conferences, the ones that stick with me have been Wembley Stadium, the Tower Of London, a purpose-built educational hotel in Beijing, with one of the world’s largest plasma screens and a conference room at a hotel in Riga, the capital of Latvia that overlooked the River Daugava.

So, in summary, whether you are booking a venue for  team-building or a conference, think very carefully about the venue you choose, to provide delegates with a location that enhances their learning experiences and in doing so, will increase the length the learning is retained and therefore used.

A special thanks to Mark Godfrey, MD of Deer Park Country House and Hotel and his team, for their time, hospitality and excellent customer service.

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

Yours behaviourally, Nick

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How effective is your team? 

Do you measure how effective you are?  If not, you may find it of value to understand the Team DyNAmics© Model on more detail, which you can do, by using this link,  Team DyNAmics©

 

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 speaking at your conference, my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

 

Individuality 

Something to reflect on.

As An Assistant, Are You A Part Of The Team Or Apart From The Team?

Ngagementworks Team Player Nick Fewings

This is a question that I often ask Assistants who are delegates on the team development workshops that I facilitate with leadership, operational and project teams, or at the conferences that I speak at.  The replies are wide-ranging from being an integral part of the team to being on the fringe of the team. There appears to be no hard and fast rule.

Recently I was facilitating a workshop entitled “Adaptable Leadership” with a Senior Leadership Team, consisting of 18 people.

Attending this workshop was the Assistant who had liaised with me prior to the event. At the end of the day, I always ask individuals to provide feedback on their experience. As I gathered the feedback forms in, I read the comment from the Assistant which was as follows You have been brilliant at bringing a light to an individual’s life. Thank you.”

At the end of the event she came up to me and thanked me personally, I said it was my pleasure. She then mentioned that being on the workshop had been a surprise to her, as she wasn’t part of the Leadership Team and was just the Assistant.”

I took her to one side, we then sat down and I asked “Why do you feel that you are just the Assistant?” She replied, “Well, all I have done is arrange this event.”

So we then discussed the skills and competencies she had used to arrange the event:

Time Management: She had managed 17 leader’s diaries and also mine, to book a date when everyone was available.

Planning: She had researched venues to find one suitable for the event.

Negotiation: She had negotiated an acceptable price with the venue, to deliver what was required in terms of space, refreshments and equipment.

Risk Management: The original date that was chosen to deliver the workshop, had to be changed to another date, due to a strategic issue that had arisen. However, she already had future contingency dates, which she put into action.

Stakeholder Management: She had liaised with both the venue and myself, to ensure that needs were covered. On the day, she checked-in with her colleagues, to ensure their needs were being met.

Communication: She had been the main channel for communication between me and the Leadership Team, to ensure everyone knew the objectives of the event, pre-work required, the details of the venue and timings.

Team-building: She had organised a social meal for the team after the workshop, so they could continue to bond as a group in a social setting.

Decision-making: She had made a lot of decisions independently, based on her own knowledge and experience.

We reviewed the above and I posed the question, “Aren’t the above qualities and attributes of a Leader?” A big smile spread across her face and she replied “I suppose they are.”

In addition, as she was the Assistant to the CEO, she was privy to more strategic information, than the majority of the Leadership Team, therefore at meetings talked knowledgeably and shared her ideas with the rest of the Leadership Team.

Often, Assistants hide their light under a bushel, even though they have some incredibly valuable inter-personal skills, talents, knowledge and experience, adding value to the teams that they support and are part of. Personally, I always ensured that my Assistant was at the heart of and part of my leadership team.

I’d really appreciate hearing your experiences.  Are you part of the team or apart from the team?  What impact has this had on you?

I look forward to hearing from you.

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

Yours behaviourally, Nick

Related articles:

Tomorrow’s Assistant, The Changemaker

Tomorrow’s Assistant, “The Skills & Attributes For Future Success”

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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 speaking at your conference, my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form 

 

Teamwork at its best in Beijing

Temple Of Heaven by Nick Fewings Ngagementworks

During some free time at the Summer School, for young leaders and entrepreneurs from 28 countries around the world and organised by Youth Time International Movement, I was invited to join a group of 6 lecturers and students from the Zagreb School Of Business, Croatia, who wanted to see the Temple Of Heaven in the heart of Beijing.

It was a wonderful day of exploration and getting to know them better personally, plus it gave me an excellent opportunity to observe how they worked as a team, in a new country, with a language that they did not understand, to get to achieve their goal of getting to the Temple Of Heaven and safely back to our hotel.  Our hotel was about 7 and a half miles (12km) from the Temple Of Heaven.  The little bit of stress added, was that it was very humid and reached 35C.

This is how they effectively used some of the 16 Elements of the Team DyNAmics© Model that I created, brought to life with photographs that I took during the trip.

Purpose.  There’s was very clear, To visit the Temple Of Heaven in the time they had available, ensuring everyone had a good time.

Trust.  Yes, they showed a high-degree of trust in each other, which grew during the day as individuals helped their colleagues and they achieved small successes on their journey to their final destination.

Planning.  Their planning skills were very good and right from the start, they decided to use the Beijing Metro to plan their journey.

Capturing the Beijing Metro Map for future use

Collaboration.  The way in which individuals collaborated with others in the team was fascinating, especially when buying the tickets for the metro.  Some were better at spatial awareness, using the maps to find out which lines we needed to use and where we had to change. Others were more proficient at deciphering what type of ticket was required.  A fascinating thing occurred when the right ticket to buy was agreed upon and that was that one person decided to buy tickets at the self-service machine for all the team.

Accountability.  When things went wrong, individuals were quick to apologies for their mistakes, usually around going slightly in the wrong direction.  The rest of the team accepted these apologies without question.

Planning the route

Commitment.  This occurred in a number of instances, with individuals committed to helping their colleagues, for the benefit of the team.  The one that stands out for me, was the carrying of the gifts bought buy team members, by one person, to lighten the load of others.

Roles & Skills.  Whilst specific roles were not assigned, the different skills of the team became very apparent early on and used effectively throughout.  Some buying tickets, others helping to orientate the team, some looking after the welfare of individuals in terms of stopping for food, drink and rests.

Communication.  Great communication throughout with everyone being heard and listened to.

Decision-Making.  Whilst there was no hierarchy in who made what type of decisions, the team readily accepted ideas put forward by individuals and buy-in to a decision made was quick to be achieved.

Meetings.  These were held throughout the journey, as new challenges occurred or situations arose.  They were timely and focussed and often happened with everyone stood up.

Keeping safe from the pollution!

Reflection.  The team reflected on progress to the Temple Of Heaven regularly.  Checking in on what they had done and discussing ideas and minor changes that would make their journey more effective.

Transformation.  New ideas were readily accepted by the team, helping them to make small changes to their original plans.

Diversity.  It became apparent early on that individuals appreciated the diversity of skills and needs of others.  Demonstrated beautifully when some of the team wanted to have a coffee, whilst others wanted something to eat.  Two solutions were agreed upon that enabled both to happen.

Carrying the team’s purchases

Processes.  These grew organically on the journey to the Temple and were used effectively on the return journey to the hotel.

Environment.  The mood of the team was extremely positive throughout, even though the heat and humidity were intense and people were struggling with the walking.  The team regularly joked and chatted with each other which supported the positive atmosphere.

So, success was achieved, despite the challenges of the heat and humidity, with everyone having a fantastic experience.

So, 15 out of the 16 Elements were used effectively.  The only one not used, nor indeed required, was Vision, a long-term aspiration for what the team would like to achieve.  Perhaps this day may have got them thinking!!  Maybe a Vision of climbing Mount Everest! Who knows.

SUCCESS! WE MADE IT!

Thanks goes to Marija, Zeljka, Dorotea, Filip, Dominik and Goran for allowing me to join them and observe Teamwork at its best in Beijing.

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

Yours behaviourally, Nick

How effective is your team?  Do you measure how effective you are?  If not, you may find it of value to understand the Team DyNAmics Model on more detail, which you can do, by using this link,  Team DyNAmics©

 

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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 speaking at your conference, my email is  nick@ngagementworks.com, my mobile is 00447966306903 or please use the Contact Form

Acrobatic Teamwork

Chaoyang Acrobats

This week, until Sunday, I am in Beijing, China, attending an international Summer Camp for young leaders and entrepreneurs, organised by Youth Time International Organisation, who’s President is Julia Kinash.  It has been a wonderful experience, with delegates from 28 countries, learning the skills needed to succeed in business, delivered by global experts in their field, sharing their knowledge and experience on a variety of topics.

For my part, I have delivered a speech on how to collaborate effectively to achieve a win-win situation, whilst valuing and appreciating diversity in relation to behavioural differences.

In addition, I ran a masterclass on “Leading & Developing High-Performance Teams”, during which I shared my Team DyNAmics Model.

Yesterday evening, we experienced an evening of cultural entertainment, when we visited the theatre to watch the famous Chaoyang Acrobats.  The show was absolutely incredible with individual and team acts.  The one that struck me as an excellent example of teamwork was by the troupe of female acrobats who somehow managed to balance all 12 of them on one bicycle and ride around the stage a number of times.

Seeing this got me thinking about how many of the 16 Elements of the Team DyNAmics Model that they were using really effectively, to achieve what they did.  I think that they used 10, being Purpose, Trust, Planning, Collaboration, Accountability, Commitment, Roles, Communication, Diversity and Processes.

How effective is your team?  Do you measure how effective you are?  If not, you may find it of value to understand the Team DyNAmics Model on more detail, which you can do, by using this link,  Team DyNAmics©

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

Yours behaviourally, Nick

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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

 

 

Leadership

Something to reflect on.

Are you spending enough time on building relationships? (5 min read)

Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Time Management

There has been some interesting data from the individuals in teams that have been using the Team DyNAmics© Model over the last twelve months, helping them to achieve higher-performance, effectiveness and engagement in how they work together.

One of the themes that has emerged has been the proportion of time spent at 1:1 review meetings that individuals have with their bosses, that focus on discussing tasks, as opposed to their relationship.

This supports the feedback I have received from those on my workshops or when I speak at conferences.  I regularly ask the question, “How much time do you spend discussing your relationship with either those you lead or with those who lead you?” The answer, most of the time is “not often enough, or not at all”.

The majority of time, in 1:1 meetings, focusses on reviewing goals, targets, deadlines, budgets etc. i.e. what needs to be done.

Whilst, as humans, we spend significant time with family and friends nurturing and developing relationships, it appears, that as soon as some people walk through the office doors, the focus is firmly on the tasks and relationships take a back seat. I’m not saying this is the case with every organisation and every leader, however, feedback from delegates, who are both leaders and who are led, would suggest that this is quite a normal occurrence in the corporate world that we live in today.  This is supported by the data from the Team DyNAmics© Model.

Whether it is driven by corporate demands to maximise shareholder value or indeed those individuals in leadership positions in organisations that are very task-driven and goal-orientated, it is a cause for concern.  Why? Well quite simply, tasks are delivered by people and therefore the strength of 1:1 relationships will have an effect on how successfully or not tasks are delivered.

If focus is too skewed towards delivering on objectives and targets, whilst in the short-term there will be success, ultimately performance will drop off, employee engagement will fall and staff will opt-out and go elsewhere, where relationships are an integral and valued part of organisational success.

As a leader, fundamentally, your role is, at its lowest denominator, getting people to do things. Note the order of the words, people coming before the task. My mantra, as a leader, has always been,

“Build the relationship to deliver the goal”

When I led a team which consisted of 4 direct reports, plus my PA, it was always in my diary, on a monthly basis, to spend an hour with each of them to talk about our relationship. Whilst we had reviews about the tasks and numbers, these were less frequent, usually quarterly. The reason being is that we had sufficient data and reports produced on a regular basis, where issues about hitting the targets, were easily identified. If an issue arose, we could call an ad-hoc meeting to discuss. The tangible and measureable was, and still is, easier to manage.

The thing with relationships is that ‘state of a relationship’ is hard to measure, quite often the reason why people shy away from this. However unless someone can tell me otherwise, long-term beneficial results, are only achieved where relationships between individuals remain trustworthy, robust and mutually beneficial.

So, if you’re a leader or being led and you feel that not enough time is being devoted to building relationships, what are you going to do about it?

Well firstly, you could share this article with the person, helping you to raise the issue with them and that your relationship needs are not currently being met.

Both agree on a plan of action and importantly, get some time and dates agreed in your diaries.

Once you’ve done that, what are the things to discuss at your meetings? Well, I always like to keep things simple and practical, so when I held my relationship meetings with my team, there were simply 3 standing agenda items that we discussed:

1 What’s working well in our relationship?

We all like to be praised and give praise, so a great opportunity to give and receive praise and also ensure you keep doing what you’re doing that works for the other person.

2 What’s not working well in our relationship?

An opportunity for some two-way developmental feedback. Leaders don’t get it right all of the time so they also need to adapt and change if things aren’t as needed by those who they lead.

3. Is there any support or development needed?

Again, this isn’t just about the team member’s needs, they should also be putting forward suggestions for their leader to take on board.

If the above 3 are a breeze and take no time at all, you can always discuss a fourth area:

4. What are the values and skills that I see you demonstrate and that I appreciate?

This is a great one as it enables you to understand the perception of another person of your behaviour. Do they see you the same as you see yourself or do they see someone different.

“So, do you have these meetings and conversations with your boss or those you lead?”

I’d really value and appreciate your feedback and hear about your experiences.

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

Yours behaviourally, Nick

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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©

Cracking the code of high-performance teamwork (6 min read)

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Measurement

HOW DO YOU MEASURE TEAMWORK?

Effective teamwork is vital to the success of every organisation and even more so in times of political and economic instability, however, few organisations actually quantify what it is, how to measure it and how to achieve high-performance in teamwork. Understanding why one team performs better than another is hard to crack. Google has spent millions on Project Aristotle with inconclusive results.  However, Nick Fewings, CEO of Ngagementworks believes he has cracked it with a combination of behavioural profiling and the Team DyNAmics© Model he created.  Nick explains.

“Teamwork is influenced by two factors, WHO is in your team, in relation to their behavioural make-up and HOW effectively they work together.”

FOCUS IS COMMONLY ON “BOTTOM-LINERS”

At a recent leadership conference that I was speaking at, I asked the question “How many of you measure how effectively your team work together?” The resounding response was “We Don’t.”

What they did measure though, is what I call “bottom-liners,” i.e. indicators of performance that affect the P&L.  Due to the pressures on private companies to maximise returns for shareholders and both public and 3rd sector organisations, striving to minimise their cost income ratios, focus is very much on the “bottom-liners.”  Whilst these measures are important, so is an understanding of how effectively the individuals within those teams ,who deliver the “bottom-liners” are working together.

EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT OFTEN FOCUSSES ON  CORPORATE ENGAGEMENT

Organisations try to balance measuring “bottom-liners” by undertaking Employee Engagement Surveys, but many of these tend to ask questions that measure “corporate wellbeing and engagement” and do not address the day to day issues that impact on a team’s performance and engagement.  In addition, many staff see these as just another “tick in the box” exercise that they’ve done before, which they perceive has having little or no impact on their day to day jobs.  They also see themselves as distant from the results and therefore do not take ownership of them.  The ones who often suffer are the leaders, who need to release their hard-worked and limited staff resources to ‘fix’ engagement issues, when their results are below the norm.

However, when Sunday evening comes and peoples’ minds turn to the next working week, it is how their immediate team works that either excites them or fills them with dread, not whether they have 10% off corporate membership to their local gym. That is why the WHO and HOW of teamwork is important to measure, understand and manage.

DO YOU UNDERSTAND WHO IS IN YOUR TEAM?

Coaches that achieve success with their teams, whether it be football, basketball, rugby, cricket or other sports, have an in-depth knowledge of not only the technical skills of their team but also what they are like behaviourally.  Are they loud, quiet, thoughtful, a creative team-player, someone who needs the tactics spelt out to them or someone who understands with little detail given.

The same applies to business teams and it is important that leaders understand these things about the individuals within their team, to maximise both their behavioural preferences and technical skills, in order to play to an individual’s strengths.  In addition, understanding the whole team, provides excellent information on how the team are likely to behave together, which impacts on team meetings, decision-making, how creative they are and many other aspects of teamwork.

The understanding of WHO is in your team can be achieved by using personality profiling and mapping the team.  There are many excellent tools in the market to enable this and the key is to ensure that you use one that is highly-regarded and use someone who knows the model and profiles well to bring them to life, explaining their practical application in the workplace.

 

Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Team

Insights Discovery Team Wheel

HOW TO KNOW WHAT IS WORKING WELL AND NOT SO WELL IN YOUR TEAM

Based on my many years’ experience of both leading teams and facilitating team development, my research identified 16 Elements that form the foundation upon which high-performance teamwork can be achieved.  Each of these 16 Elements bonds at a higher level, to what I call Categories.  4 Elements, each linked to the 4 Categories.

Nick Fewings Ngagementworks Team Dynamics Engagement

Team DyNAmics© Model Categories

I then developed an online questionnaire, which team members complete about how they perceive their team is working, using statements that focus on the 16 Elements.  The results are amalgamated to produce a Team DyNAmics© Report which measure each of the 16 Elements, the 4 Categories and overall Team Engagement.

TEAMS WHO REGULARLY RE-RUN TEAM DYNAMICS© SEE A MARKED INCREASE IN TEAM EFFECTIVENESS AND ENGAGEMENT

The data is extremely powerful in highlighting both what is working well in a team and what is causing them a challenge. The team own their results and are therefore more likely to take action to overcome their challenges.  Re-running the questionnaire multiple times enables the team to track whether their performance, as a team is becoming more effective.  Uplifts of 15% in Team Engagement are not uncommon over a 6-month period.

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics© Comparison

LEADERS NEED TO FOCUS MORE ON THE WHO AND HOW

I believe that leaders should be spending about 20% of their time on setting the strategy and goals of their team and 80% on the WHO and the HOW of teamwork, in order to achieve the goals that have been set.

I have found that a lot of leaders are doing exactly the opposite, due to the focus on “bottom-liners” and also the fact that they don’t have the tools to measure either the WHO or the HOW of team performance.

WHAT ARE THE BIG DATA TRENDS FROM TEAM DYNAMICS©?

The big data from using the model with teams is fascinating.  Having used it at leadership, operational and project level, across different industries and sectors, has produced some extremely valuable and interesting data and themes.

Whilst team members are saying that they are proud to work in their teams and that they are happy to give support and help to their colleagues when needed, it also highlighted that regular meetings to review individual performance against objectives are not happening as often as they should and that a lot of teams have systems in place that hinder, not aide them to work effectively.

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics Framework Mapping

Ngagementworks Team DyNAmics© Framework Mapping

Reproduced with permission from an interview with Nick Fewings, CEO of Ngagementworks and creator of the Team DyNAmics© Model

Teamwork at its best in Beijing

Find out how a team effectively used the Team DyNAmics© Model when Nick joined them for a trip to the Temple of Heaven in Beijing, when he was speaking and facilitating workshops at an international conference of leaders and entrepreneurs.  Teamwork at its best in Beijing.

Would you like to know more about how the Team DyNAmics© Model may help you and your team?

Nick can be contacted via email via  nick@ngagementworks.com or by calling him on 00447966306903 or by using the Contact Form

If you have found this article of interest, please use the Follow option at the bottom of this page, to ensure that you are informed of future posts plus, help others and Pay It Forward, by sharing with those who may find it useful.

 

Behaviour

Something to reflect on.

“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.

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

Yours behaviourally, Nick