Posts by Commitment

Why a closed approach to strategy-making is not good for your business.

May 13th, 2022 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Why a closed approach to strategy-making is not good for your business.”
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Formulating and executing sound organisational strategy is difficult work. Strategy is often made by elite teams and thus can be limited by their biases about competitors, customer needs, and market forces and it can be an uphill battle convincing stakeholders across the company to channel money, time, and energy in a new and unproven direction.

Hence making strategy behind closed doors is a prescription for failure when disruptions are coming from all directions. The authors’ solution to both the strategy formulation and execution challenges is radical: open up your strategy process now!Open strategy offers leadership teams access to diverse sources of external knowledge that they wouldn’t otherwise have, while also making individual leaders aware of their

biases and helping them build the buy-in needed to speed up execution.

 

This approach is particularly valuable when companies face disruptive threats and contemplate transformational change. It’s much easier to master disruptions when you’re forging strategy in concert with others who view the world through a different lens than you do. Progress and innovation depend less on lone thinkers with exceptional IQs than they do on diverse groups of people working together and capitalising on their individuality, as social scientist Scott E. Page has shown.

In short, diversity of perspective matters a lot.

Involving people from  outside your company in strategy-making not only provides a wellspring of fresh ideas but also mobilises and galvanises everyone involved. All this can happen without a loss of control over the strategy-making process.

Why does a Closed Approach to Strategy-Making have its limits?

 

According to a 2018 Bain survey, strategic planning is the most popular tool available to managers. Yet, too often, the results of that planning are under-whelming. 

 

Studies find that somewhere between 50% and 90% of the strategies devised by leaders don’t work. A 2018 survey of 201 American and European executives found that 52% of their strategic initiatives over the previous three years had underperformed.

These disappointing outcomes are particularly surprising considering the resources companies pour into strategy-making. Each year, they spend more than $30 billion on consultants, tapping their knowledge of industries, competencies, and business models, and CEOs spend over 20% of their working hours, on average, focusing on strategy.

At the core of this problem is the very process by which strategy is crafted. Companies have little hope of charting a reliable path forward if they limit strategic deliberations to a small group of senior executives. They can’t get the best ideas that way, nor can they effectively connect strategy to execution. Yet, strategic planning as practised today is a tightly closed, secretive, and bounded process. Executives presume that keeping strategy to themselves keeps the company safe from employees or external contributors who would inject unschooled or unruly thinking, and from competitors who would steal their ideas. But they are wrong: The hoarding of strategy isn’t helping their companies. It’s killing them, in several distinct ways.

Isomorphous strategies

Have you ever noticed that a great deal of strategic thinking in an industry sounds the same? You’re not imagining it. It’s due to a phenomenon that organisational theorists call isomorphism.

In essence, it means that in the process of adapting to our surroundings, we behave in increasingly similar ways. The same is true for companies, particularly as benchmarking and best practices have become central elements of strategy-making. 

Unimaginative strategies

It’s tough to get ideas to cross-fertilise in corporate settings. Departments and individuals compete with one another for resources or prestige, and even when leaders mandate cooperation and silo-busting, the ideas still don’t flow freely. 

Biased strategies

One of the underlying culprits was what cognitive psychologists sometimes call the status quo trap, the tendency to favour what already exists and information that confirms that choice. Other common biases that can torpedo strategies include the sunk cost trap (the tendency to irrationally support past choices that are failing), loss aversion (the tendency to give greater weight to potential losses than potential gains) and the overconfidence trap (the tendency to believe in the accuracy of overly optimistic forecasts). 

All of these biases represent dangerous blind spots for strategists who work alone or in small groups, where the pressure to conform can lead people to ignore negative information and disparage those who bring it up.

Adapted from an article BY CHRISTIAN STADLER, JULIA HAUTZ, KURT MATZLER, AND STEPHAN FRIEDRICH VON DEN EICHEN – MIT Sloan Management Review Spring 2022

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Infusing strategy with soul: six daily practices to elevate our working lives.

May 2nd, 2022 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Infusing strategy with soul: six daily practices to elevate our working lives.”
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Can strategy be reframed so that companies can thrive in the face of our current and future challenges?

In 50 years of researching companies both in the U.S. and in Japan, the authors’ view of the organisation has evolved from an information processing machine to a living organism continually creating new knowledge.

Advances in neuroscience research in recent years have shed light on the biological factors driving humans’ sense of purpose. We now know that the most basic need we are compelled to meet is social connection.

Neuroscientists have also found that the human brain exhibits a predisposition to seek the common good. As human beings we share the ability to rapidly adapt to changing circumstances, and we can imagine together how we might create a better world.

Considering these findings, the question is: “How should companies use both souls and brains so that strategy becomes relevant to the world we live in?”

Here are six recommended practices that may help you infuse strategy with soul. An ancient Japanese tradition says that doing the ordinary things in life a little bit better every day elevates individuals. In the same way, doing the ordinary things a little bit better every day in our jobs such as working hard, making ethical choices, being kind, practising self-reflection and self-discipline, being humble and being thankful, elevates our work lives. 

This builds culture at the organisational level and character at the personal level. These behaviours have to be practised every day so that they become a way of life. Similarly, as we have learned over decades of studying organisations, companies can adopt six daily practices to turn this strategy into a way of life:

  1. Cope with complexity.
  2. Adapt to change.
  3. Embrace dynamic duality.
  4. Empathise with everyone.
  5. Tell stories.
  6. Live with nature.

This set of practices helps organisations connect to the goal of building better lives and futures for company stakeholders, members of society and employees, and helps define and pursue business goals that support the common good.

COPE WITH COMPLEXITY

The growing complexity of our world and its many interrelated systems is widely acknowledged. To solve our most pressing problems, we must tap into diverse perspectives and sources of expertise across multiple domains because no single approach or field of study will provide the answers. 

Likewise, we must bring all of our own diverse capabilities to bear: The ability to sit with a complex problem and use both analytical and intuitive thinking to address it is increasingly crucial to organisations.

ADAPT TO CHANGE

The rapid rate of change of the modern world, driven largely by accelerated technological progress, demands that leaders and organisations anticipate and adapt to new circumstances at a pace unprecedented in human history.

EMBRACE DYNAMIC DUALITY

In the West, an intellectual tradition of dualistic thinking (drawing sharp distinctions between mind and body, self and other, humanity and nature) has led business executives to neatly divide knowledge into two categories: explicit knowledge, which can easily be articulated and shared, and tacit knowledge, which is more intuitive and gained from lived experience. 

They often value the former more highly than the latter. In contrast, the intellectual tradition in Japan has stressed oneness of body and mind, of self and other, of humanity and nature. Tacit and explicit knowledge form a dynamic duality interacting with, and interchanging into, each other to create something new through life experiences.

EMPATHISE WITH EVERYONE

Human survival has always depended on our ability to organise in mutually supportive groups for food and protection, which is why social connection is our top priority. At the root of connecting with others is empathising with them. Facing today’s crises, political and business leaders should unite, using this unique quality that we humans have. 

To empathise on a deep level, we need to develop a keen understanding of others’ perspectives and cultivate compassion in our hearts.

TELL STORIES

Effective business leaders understand the power of using stories to communicate the essence of their beliefs and ideals and to help the organisation internalise strategy.

LIVE WITH NATURE

Complex natural systems such as the Earth’s climate predate humans by more than 3 billion years, and we have been living with them since our species first appeared.

The Japanese tradition of “oneness of humanity and nature”, also practised by many indigenous cultures around the world, has taken on new relevance as humankind seeks to repair the damage to our natural environment caused by industrialisation.

SURVIVING THE FUTURE

These six practices must become a way of life for companies to survive in this day and age of “unknown unknowns.” They must also become the modus operandi in the life of a strategist who seeks to meet the unprecedented challenges facing businesses and humankind. Observing leaders who consistently do these things has taught us the following lessons about strategy. First, strategy must be driven by human beings. 

Strategy is as fundamental as thinking good thoughts, doing the right thing, and practising self-reflection and self-discipline in everyday life. Those six practices represent the authors’ philosophy of doing business: work with soul. Customers, employees, suppliers, communities, and shareholders want to know whether you have a soul, if you want to build mutual trust and connection. 

Second, strategy is driven by wisdom and it is about future-making. The future is hazy and unpredictable, which is why leaders need to tell stories about where they are headed, it allows others in the organisation to follow. 

Narratives illustrate a set of beliefs about what the company stands for and what kind of legacy it wants to leave behind for future generations. These stories bind the organisation together and help strategy become a way of life for all employees.

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Do you know how to evaluate people the right way?

April 20th, 2022 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Do you know how to evaluate people the right way?”
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Most companies still use traditional, unstructured interviews to make a global evaluation. The interviewer accumulates information about the candidate and then reaches a conclusion. Unfortunately, a vast amount of evidence indicates that unstructured interviews lead to biased evaluations that have very little predictive value. It occurs because the interviewer usually forms a mental model of a candidate, a process that psychologists have shown has three specific limitations:

Excessive coherence

Mental models are usually simpler and more coherent than the reality they aim to assess. As interviewers, if we assume, for instance, that a particular candidate is an extrovert, we tend to ask questions that confirm this hypothesis.

A “quick and sticky” quality

We form our mental models rapidly, often on the basis of limited evidence at the start of the process, and we alter our models slowly as new facts emerge. That explains why, as common sense would suggest (and research has confirmed), first impressions have a disproportionate effect on the assessments we make of people in general and on the outcome of job interviews.

Biased weighting

Our mental models often don’t give each pertinent fact the weight it deserves. We may discount important bits of information or, in contrast, give great weight to factors that should be entirely irrelevant. For example, an interviewer may wrongly perceive that a male candidate has great leadership qualities just because he is tall and has a deep voice. For those reasons, we do not expect all interviewers to agree on one candidate and we often compensate by averaging several interviewers’ viewpoints.

Dozens of studies on personnel selection have shown conclusively that decisions are more accurate when interviews are structured rather than unstructured. Therefore, a growing number of organisations, especially those that put a high premium on the quality of the talent they hire, have adopted structured interviews.

In a structured interview, the interviewer must rate several key traits before making a final evaluation. Scores on each attribute serve as mediating assessments: intermediary ratings, produced in a predetermined, standardised manner in order to be as fact-based as possible. The final evaluations are then derived from these ratings.

An early form of structured interviewing was developed in 1956 by Daniel Kahneman while he served in the Israeli Army, where he observed that holistic ratings given by interviewers were poor predictors of the future success of recruits. 

He replaced these ratings with separate scores on six attributes: sense of duty, sociability, energy level, punctuality, capacity for independent thought, and what was then called “masculine pride.” 

A simple average of these scores proved to predict overall performance more accurately than did an intuitive evaluation based on an unstructured interview. An intuitive prediction made after these separate structured interview ratings were assigned was also useful. The combination of the two was the best performance predictor of all.

Adapted from “A Structured Approach to Strategic Decisions” BY DANIEL KAHNEMAN, DAN LOVALLO, AND

 

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Rethinking your approach to employee benefits: the human experience

April 7th, 2022 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Rethinking your approach to employee benefits: the human experience”
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Human resource leaders commonly assume that for a company to stand out as a great place to work, it must deliver competitive material benefits

However, new research finds that this view is outdated: engagement and retention don’t correlate with benefits because nowadays employees look beyond material offerings and instead they assess how they feel about the company they work for. Fortune 500 companies spend more on benefits and perks than ever, almost $2,500 a year per employee, on average.

But a study by the research and advisory firm Gartner, comprising global surveys of 5,000 employees and more than 150 HR leaders, reveals that employee engagement has been flat since 2016.

Carolina Valencia, a vice president in Gartner’s HR practice and one of the study’s authors says “Companies have been engaged in an arms race to offer the best perks. But once basic needs are met, people are more powerfully motivated by feelings than by material features. Employees today want to be treated as people, not just workers.”

Benefits managers should change their approach in order to offer a human deal that will make workers feel valued, supported and cared for financially, physically and emotionally.  Researchers suggest following this advices:

Connecting with employees’ lives outside work.

Companies usually don’t care about employees’ non-work issues, in part because of privacy concerns, but researchers underline that the boundaries have blurred during the pandemic so workers don’t pretend that their work lives and outside lives are separate. 

Ensuring autonomy

Many organisations allow remote work at least some of the time. But they should go further, aiming for radical flexibility in which employees ideally decide with whom, on what, and how much to work.  Far from providing cover for loafers, Gartner finds, the adoption of radical flexibility raises the number of employees defined as high-performing by 40%.

Promoting personal growth

Most organisations offer programs to foster professional growth. But employees want opportunities for personal growth as well, such as career coaching, community service or language lessons. 

Instilling shared purpose

Employees want to feel invested in their organisation’s purpose, including the ways in which it interacts with the larger world. Leaders may hesitate to highlight their activism for fear of alienating employees with dissimilar views, but such concerns appear to be overblown. Research says that workers prefer their leaders to take a stand on societal issues they care about. Researchers also suggest instituting regular meetings to discuss emerging issues with the whole company.

Providing holistic well-being offerings and helping people use them

Most large firms offer a variety of well-being programs but few employees take advantage of them because needs change from person to person and over time.  Companies could encourage employees to assess their well-being and talk candidly about mental health and provide managers with a direction to follow.

Adapted from “Rethinking Your Approach to the Employee Experience” – Harvard Business Review 202202

Feedback Sharing vs Feedback Seeking

March 16th, 2022 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Feedback Sharing vs Feedback Seeking”
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Managers are often advised to seek feedback on their performance and reviews from team members.

But researchers found instead that sharing critical managerial feedback had greater positive effects on team dynamics.

During their studies, researchers divided over 100 team leaders into four groups:

  • Leaders in the first group were told to ask team members for feedback on their performance
  • Leaders in the second group were told to discuss development areas from their own performance reviews
  • Leaders in the third group did both 
  • Leaders in the fourth group did neither

After a year, teams whose leaders had shared negative feedback about themselves reported significant improvement.

Leaders initially felt anxious and employees were sceptical and largely remained quiet. But as leaders continued to share, vulnerability was normalised, allowing feelings of safety to grow.

When leaders asked for feedback, by contrast, employees tended to speak up but leaders sometimes reacted

defensively, because they felt judged and were not ready to make a public commitment to vulnerability

The feedback often concerned things that were not very useful or controllable for leaders. So for these teams, employees went on saying less and less to their leaders, while the leaders became more and more unresponsive.

Researchers concluded that leaders who asked their team for performance feedback actually compromised team dynamics, while sharing feedback with the team helped employees to concentrate on issues that were really important.

Adapted from HBR 202202 – “Taking Your Team Behind the Curtain: The Effects of Leader Feedback-Sharing and Feedback-Seeking on Team Psychological Safety,” by Constantinos G.V.

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How to restore your mental energy

December 22nd, 2021 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “How to restore your mental energy”
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In her book  “The Happiness Track” Emma Seppala reminds us of a saying attributed to Confucius: “Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Now, she says,The problem is that we can’t always choose to do what we love. However, we can choose how we approach our work so we can enjoy it more”. Rather than thinking of work as work, we can reframe it by thinking of what we love about it. Here are a few research-backed suggestions reported by Dr. Seppala.

 

Remember the Big Picture

Focus on the why, rather than the how, of a task or job. Understanding how your work connects to what you care about and to your values will restore your energy. You can think about how the device or product your company sells is helps people to fulfil their needs.

Adam Grant, Professor of Management at the Wharton School of Business studied a call centre in which employees made calls to raise money for financial aid. After Grant brought in one of the student recipients to explain what a big difference the aid had made in his life, there was a steep increase in productivity at the centre. Why? Because the centre workers were personally moved when they saw the impact their work was having.

 

Turn what you’re doing into something you want to be doing

What happens if you have a job that you don’t particularly like and that is not related to your happiness? In that case, think about how it is indirectly related to your passions. Remembering how your job allows you to indulge your passions will help you to appreciate the job rather than experience it as a burden.

Remember why you care about the work you’re doing. As a consequence, you’ll start to want to do what you are doing, rather than thinking you have to do it. 

 

Practice Gratitude

Research has shown that feeling grateful helps you replenish your energy in the face of fatiguing tasks. Maybe you don’t feel motivated. However, there are always things that warrant being grateful: You have a job when many others don’t. You enjoy the company of some of your colleagues. You experience positive emotions when you accomplish a goal.

Feeling grateful both increases positive emotion and helps you see the big picture.

 

Detach from Work When You’re Not Working

Psychological detachment from work is particularly difficult when the job’s your workload and time pressure are high, so many people take work home with them at night or do it during their time off.

Sabine Sonnentag, Professor at the University of Mannheim, has found that people who do not know how to detach from work during their off time experience increased exhaustion over the course of one year and are less resilient in the face of stressful work conditions.

Sonnentag has found that psychological distance from work is the fastest path to recovery (total absorption in a non-work-related activity) and leads, surprisingly perhaps, to increased productivity. “From our research, one can conclude that it is good to schedule time for recovery and to use this time in an optimal way.”

“Manage energy is done by cultivating calm” says Dr. Seppala. The result? Less stress, a clearer mind, and sharper focus to get your work done. “You get the same amount of work done, but you remain balanced and enjoy the process. Because you are able to think more clearly, you do a far better job. The best part, of course, is that because you are not as tired, your energy levels remain high. As a result, you are happier and more successful.”

Adapted from Emma Seppala. “The Happiness Track: How to Apply the Science of Happiness to Accelerate Your Success”. HarperCollins

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Get rid of the ANTS in your mind

December 9th, 2021 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Get rid of the ANTS in your mind”
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Shani Tsadik, in his book “A Quick Guide To Happiness” says that all the people in this world, including us, deal with unhelpful thoughts every day, whether they are aware or not. 

These thoughts hold us back from developing and fulfilling our full potential. Some of them can even bring down our self-esteem and affect our identity and the way we perceive ourselves.

“Every time we allow these kinds of thoughts to be our truths, we put ourselves in situations where we attract negative situations, other than the ones that life throws at us. It creates a domino effect and makes us cope through unhealthy ways”, writes Tsadik.

We definitely need to know more about our negative thoughts and how they affect us.

In this article, we will get acquainted with these thoughts that Dr. Daniel Aman, a psychiatrist and brain health expert, calls ANTS – Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANTS) . Here are the nine most common ANTS and some examples of our unhelpful self-talks:

 

Black or White

Thinking in terms of a dichotomy: things are good or bad, right or wrong. All the thoughts that view things at the extremes and with no middle ground or nuance.

Example: “I made so many mistakes! If I can’t do it perfectly, I might as well not bother fixing it at all.”

 

Negative filtering

These are the thoughts that make us concentrate on the negative side while ignoring the positive events or any other information that contradicts our negative view of the situation.

Example: “My boss said most of my submissions were great, but he also said several mistakes had to be corrected. He must think I’m hopeless.”

 

Negative fortune teller

Anticipating an outcome and assuming that our prediction is a fact. These expectations can be self-fulfilling. Predicting our actions based on past behaviors may prevent us from seeing the opportunity to change our situation.

Examples: “I’ve always been like this. I’ll never be able to change. I know it’s not going to work out, so there’s no point in trying.”; This relationship is going to fail again, for sure.”

 

Magnification

A tendency to exaggerate jokes and empty words. Even though it was a joke, we accept it as if the person really meant it. We just spiral down and make a big deal out of it.”

Example: “You look so wimpy today!”

 

Emotional Reasoning

Feelings are mistaken for facts. It refers to every lie about ourselves that we believed to be true because they feel real.

Example: “I feel like a failure, therefore, I am a failure. I feel ugly, so I must be ugly. I feel hopeless, so does my situation.”

 

Blame

Blaming ourselves, knocking down the motivation, and creating false beliefs about ourselves.

Examples: “It was all my fault”; “I shouldn’t have said that”; “I always ruin the beautiful things”;. “Why do I always bring bad luck?”

 

Personalization

Taking offense or feeling upset with what people say or do, thinking that their remarks are directed at us.

Example: John was in a terrible mood and didn’t notice you in the hallway. You took it the wrong way and thought, “It must be something I did. It’s obvious he doesn’t like me, otherwise, he would’ve said ‘hello.’”

 

Mind-reading

Making assumptions about other people’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors without checking the evidence, i.e., “John is talking to Molly, so he must like her more than me. Maybe he thinks I was stupid.”

 

Labeling

Generalizations and labels we give to ourselves as if it’s an innate characteristic or a burden we carry in our pocket.

Example: “I’m the black sheep wherever I go.”

 

As Plutarch said, “What we change inwardly will change outer reality.” Acknowledge these negative thoughts and getting rid of them is the first step to happiness. 

Adapted from  Tsadik, Shani D. “A Quick Guide To Happiness: Life Changing Tools and Techniques to Transform Your Life Immediately”, Ses Ventures

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Three very good reasons for being lazy

December 1st, 2021 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “Three very good reasons for being lazy”
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Cal Newport in his book Deep Work suggests to inject regular and substantial freedom from professional concerns into your day providing you with the idleness paradoxically required to get (deep) work done. 

At the end of the workday, shut down your consideration of work issues until the next morning—no after-dinner e-mail check, no mental replays of conversations, and no scheming about how you’ll handle an upcoming challenge; shut down work thinking completely. If you need more time, then extend your workday, but once you shut down, your mind must be left free.

Reason #1: Downtime Aids Insights

Dutch psychologist Ap Dijksterhuis’s gave subjects the information needed for a complex decision regarding a car purchase. Half the subjects were told to think through the information and then make the best decision. The other half were distracted by easy puzzles after they read the information, and were then put on the spot to make a decision without having had time to consciously deliberate. The distracted group ended up performing better.

Dijksterhuis proved that some decisions are better left to your unconscious mind to untangle. In other words, to actively try to work through these decisions will lead to a worse outcome than loading up the relevant information and then moving on to something else while letting the subconscious layers of your mind mull things over.

Reason #2: Downtime Helps Recharge the Energy Needed to Work Deeply

A paper appearing in the journal Psychological Science describes a simple experiment. Subjects were split into two groups. One group was asked to take a walk on a wooded path in a botanical garden. The other group was sent on a walk through the bustling center of the city. Both groups were then given a challenging task called backward digit-span. The nature group performed up to 20 percent better on the task. The nature advantage still held the next week when the researchers brought back the same subjects and switched the locations: It wasn’t the people who determined performance, but whether or not they got a chance to prepare by walking through the woods.

Walking through nature exposes you to what lead author Marc Berman calls “inherently fascinating stimuli. These stimuli “invoke attention modestly, allowing focused-attention mechanisms a chance to replenish.

Reason #3: The Work That Evening Downtime Replaces Is Usually Not That Important

Anders Ericsson studied the practice habits of a group of elite violin players training at Berlin’s Universität der Künste and discovered that the capacity for deep work in a given day is limited. It follows, therefore, that by evening, you’re beyond the point where you can continue to effectively work deeply. Any work you do fit into the night, therefore, won’t be the type of high-value activities that really advance your career; your efforts will instead likely be confined to low-value shallow tasks (executed at a slow, low-energy pace). “By deferring evening work”, says Newport, “you’re not missing out on much of importance”.

The three reasons just described support the general strategy of maintaining a strict endpoint to your workday. Only the confidence that you’re done with work until the next day can convince your brain to downshift to the level where it can begin to recharge for the next day to follow. As Newport says, “trying to squeeze a little more work out of your evenings might reduce your effectiveness the next day enough that you end up getting less done than if you had instead respected a shutdown.”

Adapted from Deep Work – Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World – Cal Newport, Grand Central Publishing

The six myths of Vulnerability

November 18th, 2021 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “The six myths of Vulnerability”
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In her book “Daring Greatly”, Brené Brown wrote about six myths surrounding vulnerability.

Myth #1: Vulnerability is weakness.

“I’ve asked fighter pilots and software engineers, teachers and accountants, CIA agents and CEOs, clergy and professional athletes, artists and activists, and not one person has been able to give me an example of courage without vulnerability. ” Says Brown. “The weakness myth simply crumbles under the weight of the data and people’s lived experiences of courage.”

Myth #2: I don’t do vulnerability.

Our daily lives are defined by experiences of uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure. Pretending that we don’t do vulnerability means letting fear drive our thinking and behaviour. Choosing to own our vulnerability and do it consciously means learning how to rumble with this emotion and understand how it drives our thinking and acting.

Myth #3: I can go it alone.

Or, said in another way: “I don’t need to be vulnerable because I don’t need anyone.”  Neuroscience researcher John Cacioppo dedicated his career to understanding loneliness, belonging, and connection and he makes the argument that we don’t derive strength from our rugged individualism, but rather “from our collective ability to plan, communicate, and work together.” Whether we know it or not, our brain and biology have been shaped to support interdependence over independence.

Myth #4: You can engineer the uncertainty and “discomfort out of vulnerability.

Someone suggests that we should make vulnerability easier by engineering the uncertainty and emotion right out of it, maybe through an app and/or an algorithm to predict when it’s safe to be vulnerable with someone. This is the attempt to engineer the vulnerability and uncertainty out of systems and mitigate risk. However, Brown is talking about relational vulnerability, not systemic vulnerability. “Regardless of what you do and where you work, you’re called to be brave in vulnerability even if your job is engineering the vulnerability out of systems.”

Myth #5: Trust comes before vulnerability.

Conversations about relationships always bring up the chicken-egg debate about trust and vulnerability. “We need to trust to be vulnerable, and we need to be vulnerable in order to build trust.” In a research based on forty years of studying intimate relationships John Gottman was able to predict an outcome of divorce with 90 percent accuracy based on responses to a series of questions. Gottman says that trust is built in very small moments, which he calls “sliding door” moments. “In any interaction, there is a possibility of connecting with your partner or turning away from your partner. Trust is the stacking and layering of small moments and reciprocal vulnerability over time. Trust and vulnerability grow together, and to betray one is to destroy both.”

Myth #6: Vulnerability is disclosure.

Brown is not a proponent of oversharing, indiscriminate disclosure as a leadership tool, or vulnerability for vulnerability’s sake. Google’s five-year study on highly productive teams, Project Aristotle, found that feeling safe to take risks and be vulnerable in front of each other was for team members “far and away the most important of the five dynamics that set successful teams apart.” Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson defines this as “psychological safety.” Vulnerability is the building block.

Adapted from Brené Brown, Dare to Lead, Random House

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How you can improve your planning ability

November 11th, 2021 Posted by News 0 thoughts on “How you can improve your planning ability”
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What is planning?

  • Anticipate problems, roadblocks and threats and plan accordingly
  • Develop practises and procedures to get things done the most efficient way
  • Spend time on what’s important directing attention to critical and putting trivial aside
  • Involve the appropriate people at the right time and keep them informed about relevant issues, progress and changes
  • Recognize and take corrective actions when facing undesirable outcomes

 

To improve your planning skills, ask yourself:

  • Do I have a clear idea of the desired outcome of this project?
  • When was the last time I missed a deadline due to poor planning?
  • Have I created a “sabotage” list of things that could go wrong?
  • Do I know what resources are available for this project/assignment?
  • When was the last time I was surprised by the impact of my plan on another group?
  • Am I using the available technology for planning?
  • Are others surprised by how my plan is unfolding?
  • How much time do I spend planning?
  • Is everyone in my group working off at the same page?
  • How can this problem or project be structured so multiple tasks can be done simultaneously?

 

Train your planning skills

  • Experiment tools and techniques to organize your work and discuss the usefulness with your coworkers.
  • Work closely with your manager on planning a project meeting. Get feedback on your planning and organizing skills from your manager and those people involved in the meeting. Get feedback on how you prioritize the issues.
  • Identify managers who have good planning and organizational skills. Ask them about what works for them. Apply at least one of these techniques to your projects.
  • Ask to be the coordinator of a special event. List all of the different parts that make up the event. Develop a plan that integrates all the pieces. Seek feedback from those involved on how well you kept people informed and coordinated the different activities.
  • Once collected feedback, think about what you learned and what you would do differently in the future.
  • Organize a forum during which information about your group’s mission, products, services and technology is presented to interested people from other units.
  • Take a liaison role between your team and another team with whom you work, and get feedback on your effectiveness in this role.
Commitment - Turning Potentials into Results

Turning Potential into Results.
Un viaggio entusiasmante nella crescita umana.

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