Mastering the Art of One-to-One Conversations

What are the important one-to-one conversations you’ve had recently, perhaps as a professional, as a friend or as a parent? How could you have got more from that conversation, especially if it was with someone where the relationship is currently difficult? A conversation between two people has...

Setting Objectives – The Focus Wheel

  You’ve just sat down with one of your team to review his objectives and you’ve agreed that he needs to focus on developing his influencing skills, particularly in relation to his new project.  You’re both very familiar with the concept of SMART, but have no idea...

Ideas in Meetings – Going from Good to Great

As you walk away from yet another meeting where you feel personally underwhelmed by the quality of ideas, are you convinced that with a bit more time you could have all come up with something a bit more creative? How do you achieve meetings that create...

Turning Around a Dysfunctional Team – 7 Triage Questions

    To paraphrase Leo Tolstoy: “All happy teams are alike; each unhappy team is unhappy in its own way.”   A dysfunctional team can be a nightmare and suck up huge amounts of time, emotion and motivation as well as significantly affect results. Sometimes, it can seem as...

Getting a GRIP on High Performing Teams

We all know that teams don’t just perform at their optimum level from day 1; it takes time and energy from everyone involved, from the team members to the managers. The stages of development that teams pass through to achieve high performance, as defined by Bruce...

Six Tips for Communicating Change

  When I received school reports for my two daughters at the end of last term, I was a bit surprised by the new format used.  The way the report was written had changed and some key information, which had always been there before, was missing. ...

What is a Team?

Are you a TEAM or a WORKING GROUP and why does it matter? In this blog I’ll explore the difference between teams and working groups and explain why it’s important to differentiate between the two so that you don’t fall into the trap of trying to...

Development Planning – Making Learning Stick

We all know it’s a good thing to have a development plan but, when it comes to executing it, are you taking the steps to ensure that the learning takes place and actually sticks? Maybe you’re a manager who goes through the process of development planning...

Working in partnerships – 7 important conversation topics

It can be exciting when you have an opportunity to work in partnership with another person, department or organisation and you’ll be keen to move forward. But, how do you make sure this partnership works ….and lasts? A Partnership is defined as “an ongoing relationship where...

The ART of delegation – 3 things leaders need to give

Why do you delegate? Is it because you’re busy and can’t get everything done? Is it because you want to give someone else an opportunity to develop? Is it a bit of both? Whatever your reason, delegation is an ART and, like any art form,...

The ‘OK Corral’ – Choosing a positive attitude

Organisations will often have values about always treating customers and colleagues with respect but sometimes, in the cut and thrust of the real world of work, this can seem like a big ask…When the going gets tough, what helps us develop this attitude without being...

Questioning techniques – the art of asking effective questions

You ask questions in many different scenarios; so whether you’re trying to assess someone’s suitability to do a job, explore how a project is progressing, establish reasons for a performance issue or delve into someone’s career aspirations…. Do the questions you ask help you get the...

Dealing with Difficult People – The Games People Play

Dealing with ‘difficult people’ is an energy sapper for everyone. Trouble is… we can sometimes walk into an invitation to a dead end interaction without realising it. How do we get sucked in to these human black holes? Transactional Analysis Game Theory can offer some...