Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope... and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.
Assertive, as opposed to aggressive or passive behaviour, is essential for any manager who wants to get things agreed and done while maintaining good relationships with those around them. Read more...
I have noticed over this last year of pandemic measures that there are some things I am doing more of and some things I am doing less of.
If I do more of something, I get better at it. One way to think of this is the boundaries around my abilities expand. I have more room, more scope, and I can achieve more.
Conversely, if I do less of something the boundaries contract and become limiting. I get 'out of practice'.
If we don't use it, we start to lose it.
With vaccinations underway and the promise of lockdown easing slowly, I am wondering what skills have atrophied that I will miss as we establish a new way of life.
What about you?
What skills will you need again soon that have become blunt with lack of use?
Have you noticed there are more and more suburban areas in London and elsewhere that are now 20mph areas?
Someone said to me "How can you drive at 20mph?!!!"
Is this about patience?
'patience' n. the quality of being able calmly to endure suffering, toil, delay, vexation or the like; sufferance. Chambers English Dictionary, 1988 edition.
Fast food, same-day delivery, smartphones. We live in a world with more and more opportunities for instant gratification and less need for patience. 'I want it NOW!'
Were there times when lack of patience caused you problems?
Speeding ticket? Food not quite cooked? Stressed out while waiting in line? Traffic?
This week, notice when impatience arises, and then notice impatience arises from how you are thinking about the situation, not the situation itself.
How could you think differently?
By the way, what things in your life should not be hurried, even if you could?
The delivery arrived. It was earlier than expected. Great!
I unpacked it with anticipation and discovered it was the wrong mattress. I ordered the right one, and the wrong one arrived. Not so great :-(
It was an avoidable error that reminded me of a quote by John W Bergman, "There's never enough time to do it right, but there's always enough time to do it over."
It's amazing how often we rush things because we are busy and then make a mistake which ultimately costs us more time - and makes us even busier.
When did this last happen to you?
How can you remind yourself when you are reacting to 'being busy' to be wary of that rushed mistake that will cost you?
In other words, how can you change the way you do things to avoid the avoidable errors?
By any definition, times right now are turbulent and this quote from Peter Drucker is so apt.
"The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence. It's to act with yesterday's logic"
Our challenge is in recognising when we are using yesterday's logic because to us it seems natural, normal, obvious, and right - even if we stop to think about it. Even more dangerous is the logic we use based on our implicit assumptions which we don't think about at all.
How do you know you are using yesterday's logic?
Share your challenges and your proposed solutions with a friend who is not in your line of work, who comes from a different background to you, or who is eight years old and doesn't yet have much logic from yesterday.
What questions do they ask? What do they find surprising or weird about your solutions?
By the way, notice how you describe the scenario to them. Are you pitching it to try and sway them to agree with your solution because you 'feel' it's right? That's yesterday's logic talking...
“The most dangerous words in business are, ‘We’ve always done it this way'” says Darren Murph, the head of remote working for GitLab (GitLab is a software company with about 1,300 employees, all working remotely).
Think of the businesses you know that have gone out of business because they didn’t adapt to change.
Now look at your business, your employer, or your life, and notice where you are clinging to your old way of doing things despite the wave of change we are facing at the moment.
How do you react to change? Do you embrace it, learn from it, and lean into it? Or do you cling to the past and try to claw your way back to the way things used to be, back to a non-existent ‘old normal’?
We are often blind to our attachment to ‘how we do things’, so ask people around you to suggest changes and see how you react. Do you recoil from suggestions of change, or are you willing to explore them?
Here is a simple graphic on change readiness that you might find useful.
There is often the feeling that the people who keep their jobs after a round of redundancies are the lucky ones. They wouldn’t necessarily agree...
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