Thursday, 23 December 2010

In this space!

A pet hate is the utterly pointless expression in this space. So instead of the perfectly adequate 'how can I help?' it's 'how can I help in this space?' Or the classic I heard on Friday, 'How can we help our customers in this space going forward?' I think I may have caught this expression in the very early stages of it's development, as I've yet to hear it said outside this one client. So I'm on a personal crusade to stamp it out before it starts infecting other City institutions. Wish me luck in this space."

Friday, 10 December 2010

Experiential Learning Outside

Many clients, and prospective clients come to that, ask how we have done Leadership development outside in the past. We are always happy to explain but sometimes as they say "a picture speaks a thousand words", so here are two thousand.

Monday, 6 December 2010

"Let's touch base"

My favourite corporate phrase I hear regularly at a financial client of ours is let's touch base about that offline. I think they want everyone in the room to believe that it means they need a private chat, but I have a belief it normally means the person is in line for a roasting.

Monday, 15 November 2010

Loop back

Have you ever heard the term loop back? I heard this in a meeting recently and had to ask what it meant. I was told it means to go back to an associate and deal with them.

Friday, 5 November 2010

"Product Evangelist"

Just another one of those phrases that we have heard working with a client.

Anyone involved with a particular product was encouraged to be a product evangelist. And software users these days, so we hear, want to be platform atheists so that their computers will run programs from any manufacturer.

Monday, 1 November 2010

DiSC Introduction

The DISC profile, also called the DISC Personality Test behavioral assessment, is a psychological evaluation test similar to the Myers-Briggs personality index and the Social Styles profile. It evaluates an individual's personality by using a four-dimensional model of behavior, with the dimensions being Dominant, Influencing, Steadiness, and Conscientious.


The DISC profile was developed in 1928 by the psychologist William Moulton Marston, the creator of Wonder Woman comics and of the first operational lie detector.


The DISC profile reveals how an individual will react under different circumstances and situations, such as during communication, in conflict and under stress. DISC profiles are used for the management of organisations, teams, groups and individuals, and are invaluable tools to create connection and rapport with people.


DISC profiles are commonly employed in personal, business and corporate situations to gain personal and professional insights. They allow people to better understand themselves, their weaknesses, their strengths and their motivational factors. DISC profiles provide strategies and insights for interpersonal success through tolerance, understanding and effective communication. DISC profiles are routinely used by managers to assess their teams and the personalities of individual players. The DISC profile is a useful communication tool, for it allows managers to isolate team members with personalities in opposite quadrants in an effort to ensure work progresses without any hindrance.


DISC profiles allow individuals to realise their challenges and strengths and those of others; reduce conflict and enhance communication and collaboration; create awareness on how best to deal with diverse personality and communication styles; and enhance mentoring and coaching skills. A DISC profile is accurate and quick, and technological advancements have made it possible for individuals to take the test online and receive immediate feedback. It is fully customizable and can be adapted to generate results in multiple languages.


Human beings are complex creatures that are driven to behave differently under different situations and circumstances. It is not necessary that a person adopt the same approach to a situation or a problem every time it arises. Individuals are creatures of emotion, and usually settle on that course of action from which they can derive maximum benefit and/or satisfaction. While the DISC profile is an effective tool to present an overall assessment of a person or a group, it falls short of providing a comprehensive personality overview.

Should you be interested in using DiSC please contact us, we can also advise on a range of more comprehensive personality tools or on tools that measure a teams dynamic profile.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Strategic staircase

Lately I've come across the strategic staircase. What on earth is this?

I'll tell you; it's office speak for a bit of a plan for the future. It's not moving on but moving up.

How strategic can a staircase really be?

A lot I suppose, if you want to get to the top without climbing over all your colleagues.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Meeting Evaluation - Key Actions

  • Were the purpose and desired outcome(s) clearly stated?
  • Was the agenda specific?
  • Was someone assigned responsibility for each topic?
  • Were time limits set for each topic?
  • Were ground rules clearly defined?
  • Was the discussion focused on the desired outcome(s)?
  • Was an appropriate pace maintained?
  • Were diverse points of view encouraged?
  • Were the desired outcome(s) accomplished?
  • Were action items assigned?
  • Did the meeting end at the projected time?

Thursday, 22 July 2010


Finally got them all to stop ..... for now!

Sent from Simon Bound (mobile)

Tuesday, 20 July 2010


Aaaaah. It comes to something when all your electronic accounts are automatically sending eachother messages....... how do I make it stop!

Sent from Simon Bound (mobile)

Friday, 16 July 2010

Leadership - it's all about you!

The quality of leadership is central to a team's performance. The ability to communicate a vision and align aspirations to achieve common goals is equally important. Effective leadership is not just about possessing the technical knowledge; it is about building relationships and influencing others to achieve overall business goals. This course will examine everything a leader will need to know to build towards team success.
  • The difference between managing and leading
  • What is your leadership style?
  • Key leadership principles to improve team performance and commitment
  • Situational leadership
  • Strategies to inspire and coach your team
  • How to manage performance
  • Motivating your team
  • Effective delegation
  • Action planning to ensure transfer of learning to the workplace

Coaching Skills - it is about them!

Development of the team is no longer something which can be abdicated to a training department. It is becoming more common for the line manager to become responsible for the development of the individuals in their team and therefore the need for coaching skills becomes of great importance.

This coaching and development programme will focus on combining the theory of coaching and practical application.

  • The key differences between coaching and training
  • What is the role of the coach
  • Skills and qualities of an effective coach
  • Awareness and responsibility
  • Understanding how to tailor the support to the individual
  • Practical session planning
  • Practical practice sessions
  • Reflection of the practical session

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) - it's more than just feelings!

This is a fun and interactive workshop which fives a broad overview of the subject of emotional intelligence. Each of the competence areas are explored in an active and participative way. It is intended for managers and other professionals who would like to deepen their knowledge and understanding of their own and other peoples' emotions in order to improve working relationships and performance.
  • Understand the key concepts of emotional intelligence
  • Identify and respond to your emotions
  • Assess your current levels of emotional competence
  • Take control of situations and get the best possible outcome
  • Resolve conflict more easily
  • Inspire more co-operation, trust and confidence in others
  • Build relationships based on trust
  • Improve decision making and achieve better results
  • Action planning to ensure transfer of learning to the workplace

Facilitation Skills - it's a group thing!

As facilitation becomes more widely known and practised, so expectations increase about the competence of the facilitator. This practical course aims to provide an opportunity for facilitators to explore a range of tools and techniques, gain feedback in practice sessions and build increased confidence in dealing wiht challenging situations.

  • Explore more tools and tchniques in facilittion
  • Practise a range of situations and receive feedback
  • Gain greater insight into your behaviour as a facilitator
  • Use facilitation skills in challenging situations
  • Contracting and rapport building
  • Facilitation models

Unravelling Management Theory - what's in it for me?

Increase both your personal effectiveness and your corporate persona as an individual and manager by developing an understanding of different management theories, how they interconnect and interact with each other. This introductory programme will help you to unlock all the jargon, concepts and brand names that those that have been exposed to, use so readily, but may not understand. You will have the opportunity to build a portfolio of theories and models that work for you to illustrate both your business acumen, as well as use on a practical level in your day-to-day role.

With theories and concepts covering personality, motivational traits, strategy, planning, projects, communication, development, feedback and leadership.


A foundation in management theory using well-established models, suitable for those new to a management role, or as a stepping stone to explore more complex stuff.


For managers who see the need to have a more sophisticated toolbox when dealing with the challenges of today.

Development Centre - it's all about discovery!

This unique, hard-hitting course equips each delegate with a range of practical tools, tchniques and insights to significantly enhance their personal performance, potential and profile.

Topics include:
  • Personal SWOT
  • Habits of High-Achievers
  • Detailed Personal Performance Feedback
  • Achieving Potential
  • Capitalising on Strengths
  • Profile Building
  • Practical Exercises
  • Action Planning for future development interventions

This programme can use generic or specific corporate competences.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Handling Disruptive Behaviour in Meetings - Key Actions

  • Stay calm and use nonverbal cues
  • Reinforce disrupter's acceptable behaviour
  • Refer to the ground rules
  • Let the group discourage the disruptive behaviour whenever possible
  • Refocus the discussion on the original topic
  • Make a direct statement to the disrupter when other approaches are unsuccessful

Monday, 14 June 2010

The Advanced Power State

The first thing I should probably say is the delay in writing this review is in no way a reflection of the book.

The success equation – D x E x E (K + xE) T = Success

The book is a collection of different approaches that make a useful portfolio of tools that one man has collected, implemented and observed in action. All supporting the above equation.

To be fair if the different elements are not always explained in a way that makes them instantly accessible to implement they are certainly discussed in a way that helps you understand them. Indeed they are all explained in a way that makes what David has to say make perfect sense.

Tips, tools, techniques and helpful anecdotes are covered that span building relationships, networking, negotiating, imagination, core skills, taking risks and personal growth. His approach to all these topics is that there is no rights or wrongs just ‘shades of grey’.

Whilst reading this book I was often reminded of many conversations I have had with David. And I am sure I am not the only one.

I know that David is also very keen to share what he has learnt as one person who has had a successful career with those who are at the beginning of their career or people who have come to an impasse with theirs.

As I know that this book has been waiting to be published for a rather long time it is also interesting to note that he has covered hot topics that are current and important today.

Fish! & Fish Tales

One subject, two great books!

Imagine a workplace where everyone chooses to bring energy, passion and a positive attitude to the job everyday. Imagine and environment in which people are truly connected to their work, colleagues and customers. In this engrossing parable, a fictional manager must transform a chronically unenthusiastic and unhelpful department into an effective team. Down the street from her office, Seattle's very real Pike Place Fish is wildly successful thanks to its fun, bustling atmosphere and great customer service. By applying ingeniously simple lessons learned from the actual Pike Place fishmongers, our manager discovers how to energise those who report to her and effect an astonishing transformation in the workplace.

Addressing today's most pressing work issues with an engaging metaphor that applies to anyone in any organisation, Fish! offers an easy to grasp, profound wisdom - the hallmark of a true business classic.

Lundin (Hodder Mobius)

Friday, 4 June 2010

Giving Constructive Feedback - Key Actions

  • State the constructive purpose of your feedback
  • Describe specifically what you have bserved
  • Describe your reactions
  • Give the other person an opportunity to respond
  • Offer specific suggestions
  • Summarise and express your support

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Roger over and out

It is always good to work with a broad range of people. One of the people who everyone at Challenging HR likes to work with is Roger Holmes.

Why not check out this video link for Roger

Sunday, 16 May 2010

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

This is a holistic, integrated, principle centred approach for solving personal and professional problems. With penetrating insights and pointed anecdotes, a step-by-step pathway for living with fairness, integrity, honesty, and human dignity.

Habit 1 - Be proactive

Habit 2 - Begin with the End in Mind

Habit 3 - Put First Things First

Habit 4 - Think Win/Win

Habit 5 - Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood

Habit 6 - Synergize

Habit 7 - Sharpen the Saw

These principles give us the security to adapt to change, and wisdom and power to take advantage of the opportunities that change creates.

Stephen Covey (Simon & Schuster)

Monday, 10 May 2010

Gung Ho!

Every day, thousands of uninspired employees trudge to work, often dooming their companies to failure with their lack of motivation.

This book outlines foolproof ways to increase productivity by fostering excellent morale in the workplace. Revealing a sure-fire system for boosting employee enthusiasm, energy and performance.

Written in the style of the "One Minute Manager' series, it is based on three core ideas to ensure that employees are committed to success and presents a clear game-plan for implementing them.

Ken Blanchard (Harper Collins)

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Quality - Key Actions

  • Focus on the work process, isssue, or behaviour, not on the person
  • Maintain the self-confidence and self-esteem of others
  • Maintain strong partnerships with your internal and external customers and suppliers
  • Take initiative to improve work processes and partnerships
  • Lead by example

Sunday, 2 May 2010

The New Leaders

Goleman's international bestseller 'Emotional Intelligence' forever changed our concept of 'being smart', proving that emotional intelligence (EI) - how we handle ourselves and our relationships - matters more than IQ, technical skill and educational success.

Now he explores the consequences of EI for leaders and organisations. Linking organisational success or failure to 'primal leadership'. In this book he argues that a leader's emotions are contagious, and must resonate energy and enthusiasm if an organisation is to thrive.

Daniel Goleman (sphere)

Friday, 30 April 2010

Good to Great

The best-selling and much talked about, since it was published in 2001, answers the compelling question: 'Can a good company become a great company, if so, how?'

After a five-year research project, he concluded that good to great can and does happen. In this book, he uncovers the underlying variables that enable any type of organisation to make the leap from good to great while other organisations remain only good. Rigorously supported by evidence, his findings are surprising - at times even shocking - to the modern mind.

Good to Great achieves a rare distinction, a management book full of vital ideas that reads as well as a fast paced novel.

Jim Collins (Random House)

Friday, 9 April 2010

Coaching for Performance

Now in a new, expanded and fully revised third edition, this bestselling handbook will help you learn the skills - and the art - of good coaching, and realise its enormous value in unlocking people's potential to maximise their own performance.

Adopted by many of the world's major corporations, this easy to use title argues persuasively for:
  • Using effective questions rather than instructions or commands to raise awareness and responsibility
  • Following the GROW sequence - Goals, Reality, Options, Will - to generate prompt action and peak performance
  • The growing need to relate to the individual's sense of meaning and purpose

and examines why:

  • Coaches now need enhanced skill levels
  • Coaching is the essential team leadership skill

John Whitmore (Nicholas Brealey)

Monday, 5 April 2010

Leadership and self-deception

You might think you are a people person. But are you really having the right effect onthose around you? Are you actually undermining success for yourself - and others?

Be prepared to have your world turned upside down and ope your eyes to a whole new way of living and working.

Throught a series of entertaining stories, this book will reveal how most of us are not fulfilling our potential - in our personal lives and at work - because of 'self-deception'. It will show you how to escape your box of self-deception, and change for the better in a lasting way:
  • Don't focus on what others are doing wrong. Do focus on what you can do to help.
  • Don't worry whether others are helping you. Do worry whether you are helping others.
  • Don't try to be perfect. Do try to be better.
The Arbinger Institute (Penguine)

Friday, 2 April 2010

Facilitation - Key Actions

  • Prepare the group for a focused meeting
  • Encourage diverse points of view
  • Keep the group focused and moving
  • Make sure action items are planned

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Learn to manage the 'Gurus' - who's who

'Gurus' to look out for or read up on are:

Richard Pascal and Anthony B Athos - 'The Art of Japanese Management'

McKinsey - 'Seven S Model'

Peter Drucker - 'Flatter Mangement Structures'

Tom Peters - 'Thriving on Chaos'

Tom Peters & Robert Waterman - 'In Search of Excellence'

Michael Porter - 'The Competititve Advantage'

George Stalk Jnr & Thomas M Horr - 'Competing Against Time'

Rosabeth Moss Kanter - 'When Giants Learn to Dance'

John Harvey-Jones - 'Managing to Survive'

John Harvey-Jones - 'Making it Happen'

John P Kotter - 'A Force for Change'

Peter M Senge - 'The Fifth Discipline'

Warren Benn - 'On Becoming a Leader'

Peter Drucker - 'Managing the Non-Profit Organisation'

Peter Drucker - 'Management: Tasks Responsibilities Practices'

Peter Drucker - 'Managing for Results'

Theodore Levitt - 'Thinking about Management'

Kenneth R Andrews - 'The Concept of Corporate Strategy'

Kenichi Ohmae - 'The Mind of the Strategist'

Kenishi Ohmae - 'The Borderless World'

Charles H Kepner & Benjamin B Tregoe - 'The New Rational Manager'

Mark McCormick - 'What They Don't Teach You at Harvard Business School'

Henry Mintzberg - 'Mintzberg on Management'

Peter M Sluger - 'The Fifth Discipline'

Campbell & Tawardey - 'Mission and Business Philosophy'

Robet H Waterman Jnr - 'The Frontiers of Excellence'

Rober P Waterman Jnr - 'The Renewal Factor'

Geert Kofstode - 'Cultures and Organisations'

Michael Hammer & James Champney - 'Reengineering the Corporation'

John P Holter & James L Heshett - 'Corporate Culture and Performance'

Andrew Campbell, Marion Devine and David Young - 'Sense of Mission'

Henry Neave - 'The Deming Dimension'

Philip Crosby - 'Quality is Free'

Richard Whiteley - 'The Customer - Driven Company'

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Improve Your People Skills

People skills are the key to success, yet they all depend on one fundamental insight: nobody knows for sure what you are thinking or feeling - they can respond only to your behaviour. Getting the best from others, therefore, means monitoring and modifying how you behave.

This key principle can decisively boost your effectiveness in the office or the boardroom, when chairing and coaching, interviewing and influencing, presenting and planning. With section on topics ranging from Bullying, Competencies, Diversity and Empowerment to Listening, Mentoring, NLP and Values.

Peter Honey (CIPD)

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

The Good Manager's Guide

Through the medium of a comprehensive series of practical and authoritative checklists, this book gives you the confidence to make the right decisions ... fast.

The second edition has been extensively revised and rewritten with the inculsion of over fifty brand new checklists.

Trevor Boutall (MCI)

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Effective Leadership

The art of good leadership is highly prized and demands a keen ability to appraise, understand and inspire both colleagues and direct reports.

This book is carefully structured to ensure a steady, easily acquired insight into leadership skills. So you understand leadership, develop leadership abilities and grow as a leader.

Adair (Pan)

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

The Leadership Challenge

The first edition was seminal and totally original. It became a modern classic on leadership practically overnight. With this new edition, with new cases and concepts and action steps that are even riper and more important, Kouzes and Posner go way beyond their earlier work and have made yet another brilliant contribution to leadership studies. This new book, a product of an unusual collaboration, is essential reading for everyone involved or concerned with leading.

Kouzes & Posner (Jossey-Bass)

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Clarifying Customer Expectations - Key Actions

  • Identify the product or service and explain why you want to discuss it
  • Ask questions to clarify what the customer expects from your product or service
  • Summarise your understanding of the customer's expectations
  • Discuss what you will do to meet these expectations
  • Agree on next steps and set a follow up date

Friday, 12 March 2010

Challenging HR

What does that mean then?

I was recently asked why the company is called what it is. I could give you lots of really well thought through marketing reason why we chose 'Challenging HR' and all of them would be true. But the it would appear that things happened it a certain chronological order. In trueth the name came first and whether it fitted with what we are about came second.

We are often asked what we mean by it and in trueth it means several things. It also means different things to different people, which in it's own way also fits what we are about. Developing people is never what you would call an exact science. More importantly what does it mean to you? When you have worked that out, do let me know.

What Color is Your Parachute?

When people tell my they are reviewing their life and/or their career I pretty much know what is coming next. It is a question about what book can I recommend that may help. Well, for all those people who have asked or who are about to .......... here it is.

This is that book! It has been the job-hunting classic for decades, and is updated by Bolles each rear.

After I read it 1996 (and working through a dozen of the exercises) I knew that it should be required reading for anyone who wants to successfully carve out their own career niche.

It is about taking chances, gaining confidence and making changes in your career and life.

Richard Bolles (Ten Speed Press)

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Book on Resilience

'Resilience: Bounce Back from Whatever Life Throws at You'
by Jane Clarke and John Nicholson
(Nicholson McBride)

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

Every manager and executive will recognise themselves somewhere in this book. Lencioni distills the problems that keep even the most talented teams from realising their full potential. Even more important, he shows how to solve them.

Patrick Lencioni (Jossey-Bass)

Keep it in Proportion

Have a Sense of Proportion It's easy to say and more difficult to do, but try to be a little more relaxed about things. Your resilience changes over time; it's not set hard and fast with your personality. If something takes you by surprise, you need to be flexible in order to cope. Jung suggested that we only had so many resourses to deal with stressful situations. So if more than one thing is happening at a time you may need decide where you want to focus your emotional resources.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Reality Gap

Bridge the Gap Research shows that women regard themselves as being less resilient than men. But women are actually more resilient. You may look at a friend or a colleague and think they're amazing and can deal with anything, but they may actually be experiencing a lot of stress. Things aren't always what they appear!

Tools for Problem Solving and Analysis

Determine whether you need to expand your thinking, gather information, or organise information. Select an appropriate tool or technique and apply it.

This list covers some of the basic tools (all can be readily researched on the www)
  • A different point of view
  • Brainstorming
  • Pencil and paper brainstorming
  • Round-Robin brainstorming
  • Checksheet
  • Control Chart
  • Diagram
  • Double Reversal
  • Fishbone Diagram
  • Backward Fishbone
  • Bulletin Board Fishbone
  • Detailed Flow Chart
  • Force Field Analysis
  • Histogram
  • Pareto Chart
  • Planning Chart
  • Ranking
  • Rating
  • Run Chart
  • Scatter Diagram

The Advanced Power State

The post where I live often arrives through the door around 4pm. Late I know! But today's has just arrived. The earliest it has ever arrived, but delivering something that I have been waiting to be delivered for months.

David Tinney has promised himself that he would publish his book for years (it may even be decades) and it has finally arrived. It has gone straight to the top of my reading pile and I will post a review as soon as I have read and digested it's contents.

I have high hopes as the back page introduction goes:

'This book is about how to make you successful. It is my sincere belief that all you have to be is a little better that then person next door and you will shine. This book gives you the tools to make a success of yourself and thus whatever you drive yourself to do.'

So watch this space for the review....


ExpressExec is a unique business resource of one hundred books.

These books present the best current thinking and span the entire range of contemporary business practice. Each book gives you the key concepts behind the subject and the techniques to implement the ideas effectively, together with lessons from benchmark companies and ideas from the words smartest thinkers.

Organised into ten core subject areas making it easy to find the information you need:
  1. Innovation
  2. Enterprise
  3. Strategy
  4. Marketing
  5. Finance
  6. Operations and Technology
  7. Organisations
  8. Leading
  9. People
  10. Life and Work

It is the perfect learning solution for people who need to master the latest business thinking and practice quickly or have gaps they need to fill.

Monday, 8 March 2010

When Smart People Work for Dumb Bosses

Suffering under an intimidating supervisor? Mistreated by thoughtless management? Demeaned by a dictator? Bullied by a lazy boss? Used and abused by heartless company policy? You're not alone. The fact is that such nightmare situations are a way of life for many working people. But help is on the way. William and Kathleen Lundin, "therapists" for dysfunctional organisations, have helped hundreds of employees break the cycle.

This book offers hope for dealing with those "bosses from hell".

Lundin (McGraw-Hill)

Ask for help

A Helping Hand People who are more introverted and who tend to bottle things up will struggle on alone. If you can recognise a network of people around you, such as friends and family, you may help yourself become more resilient. Use their advice. Take on Board their positive feedback, as a lot of people brush of compliments and fix on negative feedback. Understand why these people love you, rate you and respect you. It's important to help you build your self-esteem, which in turn makes you more resilient.

How to get the most (for yourself) from Training

Before the programme - don't let training just happen to you
  • Find out all you can about the training programme you are about to attend
  • Complete pre-class work thoroughly
  • Get you workload in order before you go to the training programme

During the programme - get actively involved

  • Get to know the people in class with you
  • Help create a constructive learning atmosphere -Be active, listen actively to others, be positive, be on time and prepared
  • Be willing to try new things
  • Be willing to practice
  • Help make positive mid-course corrections
  • Build a solid plan for back-on-the-job implementation

After the program - stay focused on mastering the skills

  • Involve others
  • Implement your plan
  • Be willing to break old habits
  • Stick to it
  • Follow up
  • Give yourself credit where credit is due

Sunday, 7 March 2010


Take Control You need to be individually accountable. Are you a victim of circumstances or are you someone who thinks, 'What can I do about this?' If something goes wrong, you need to take control, In the workplace, the people who are really coping - especially in this economy - are optimists and those who take control of their own destiny.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Chill Out

Chill Out Easier said than done I hear you cry! It may be easier if we understand and therefore anticipate what exactly will cause us negative stress. Then taking action to deal with those stressful situations. If you have too much work to do, do something to distract yourself, like taking a walk or exercise. One spritual guru suggests "chopping logs or carrying water". Or deal with it by breaking down the problem into bite-size chunks. If you feel as if you're dealing with some aspects of the problem, you're more likely to feel less stressed.

Thursday, 4 March 2010


Think Happy  It is very important to be optimistic, almost to the point of being opportunistic.  Again from my previous comments this isn’t something you can do retrospectively.  For this, you need to be in tune with your thinking.  We all know people who have a little voice that tells them they are going to do badly, that things aren’t going to go as well as they had hoped.  A friend of mine springs to mind instantly, and whether it be about his job or having his kitchen refitted, it is always a self fulfilling prophecy. We all need to recognise where are thinking is negative or unconstructive and turn it around so it’s more positive.

How to be Resilient

Resilience is the topic that I have chosen as the first subject of my blog. Why you may ask!

It is probably the one topic that I have been hearing more than anything. Everyone from psychologist, spiritual guides and the HR press have all been focusing on for months.

And I read with interest this seven point explanation on how to escape the abyss (here is the 1st point):

Bounce Back Resilience is the ability to recover from difficult situations. My first job was in a High Street bank, but I soon started analysing people's behaviours. I discovered there are five characteristics that make you resilient - the ability to problem solve, optimism, flexibility, accountability and freedom from stress. My observations also tell me it can become clear, and very stressful, when people know what they need to do to become resilient but struggle to manifest these behaviours naturally.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010


As an introduction to the blog it is probably worth letting you know what you can expect. It is my intention to use this space to comment on what is currently “going on” at the moment as far as current articles and the themes that I have heard being discussed. Although that observation may just be that everyone seems to be talking about something and no one doing anything particularly different about it.

I am not expecting to go all street and start coming up with deep and meaningful thoughts communicated in “txt spk” or “’tever” (I am not sure there has ever been a time that would have been right for me to try and do that, but it certainly isn’t right now!).

Something that I know I will have to do is share that odd occasion when something strikes me. Whether that be about a client, a delegate or even just with someone that I know.

So watch this space and speak to you soon.


Tuesday, 12 January 2010


At a large media company where we once worked (hence why I can now mention it on the blog), the head of human resources - told us that she would be cascading down new information to staff. What she meant was she was going to send them a memo. It was one of the reasons why working with this particular client was always a struggle - that, and the fact that the chief exec persisted on referring to the company as a really cool train set.