Archive for November, 2010

Teaching older dogs new tricks

Monday, November 29th, 2010

It is very difficult to change adult behaviour, and the older the adult, the more it is difficult.
Many people, including human resources people who should know better, still behave as if a few days in a classroom can produce managers who will build high performing teams and people who will communicate effectively. Would that it [...]

Rewarding behaviour and creating consequences

Friday, November 26th, 2010

Are there people around you behaving like this?
 They perform way under their capabilities even though you hold regular performance reviews
 They use up most of their sick leave each year although you see no evidence of any serious illness
 They use mobile phones during meetings for mail and messages in defiance of agreements to [...]

Catch them doing it right

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

It saddens me to see how so many adults have poor self-esteem and low self-confidence. By the time people are in their twenties, thirties and beyond, life patterns are in place that are hard to change. It would be so much easier if we did not acquire those negative perceptions of ourselves in the first [...]

There’s good news and bad news

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

There’s some really good news this week. I’ve had the proposal for my second Straight Talk book accepted for publication by my publisher, Random House Struik!
And there’s some really bad news! They want the manuscript by the end of January for July 2011 publication. So whatever other plans I had for the December holidays, they [...]

Supermoms

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

I’ve just written a piece for a journal on parenting called ‘Today’s Child’. It was written to the women who play Supermom: the ones who are there for everyone, who remember everything, who take care of the details and sort out the problems long after everyone else has collapsed in a heap.
Then I thought that [...]

Confronting tears

Friday, November 12th, 2010

One of the things that managers most dread about performance appraisals is the woman who breaks down in tears at the first hint of critical feedback.
The very best way to handle this problem is to avoid having it happen in the first place. There are two things you can try.
Prepare for the conversation by gathering [...]

How to hold people to account

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

One of the problems that almost all business managers wrestle with is that of holding people to account. When you don’t do it effectively you find yourself surrounded by people who are driving you crazy with their incompetent performance or inappropriate behaviours.
Conversations about poor performance often end with promises of improvement that come to nothing. [...]

Leadership style hasn’t changed

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

While most things change, rapidly and unpredictably, a few manage to stay the same in spite of all efforts to the contrary. To a great extent leadership style is one of them.
On the face of it that sounds unlikely, given the extensive research that has been done into leadership best practice over the decades and [...]

You want it done? Tell them what to do!

Monday, November 1st, 2010

How did something that started out as a straight forward training course last week develop into a conversation about reality?
I was training a group of young graduates who are on a two year development program, on completion of which they will be appointed as junior managers in their organisation.  As a group they all exhibited [...]