The weather is hot and fine…you still do not feel the hot sand between your toes, but soon! Over the past two weeks, I’ve heard the same injunction during coaching sessions: “I’m about to go on holiday, however I do wonder how I’ll be able to make it, since: a) I haven’t completed my work yet; b) my mind cannot rest knowing that…; c) I do not know how it will be possible for me to disconnect considering all that is left to do…
“The great storytellers have an unfair competitive advantage,”1» said Bill Gurley, partner at Benchmark, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm which led investments in Snapchat, Uber, Instagram or Dropbox. This strong affirmation underlines the fact that those who master the art of federating around stories benefit from a considerable advantage. Would this be a sign of leadership?
These past weeks, I was struck by the repetition of a sentence, which spontaneously appeared during different coaching sessions, with clients of various profiles. They had a common point, though: being confronted with the complexity of change of different scales, trying to understand why they felt shaken up, slowed down, or lost. And they finally confined in: “I know that I must mourn the past”: grieving a time gone by, acknowledging an non-modifiable data of their environment, accepting a colleague or a manager’s departure, or life changes, provoked or undergone.
Many companies are longing for THE best idea to develop their business or create new opportunities, and they logically rely on creative process, such as design thinking for example. However, apart from business departments “used to creativity”, it’s quite useful to learn how to manage creative profiles. Some people will tell you this is not as easy as it seems.
Creative people have their own motivation factors, sometimes puzzling. Understanding and accepting these particularities is a major point, as it requires being able to align their personal goals with the ambition of the project or the business, in a meaningful manner.
At first, a strong dose of intuition will be of great help, as intuition helps taking into account weak signals of human communication. Managers can also rely of four simple principles.
Your organization insists on management principles such as “engagement”, “synergy”, “collective intelligence” or “agility”, and your HR policies and tools are on the way or already implemented to create an “employee experience”. And yet, my experience as a business coach enables me to outline today’s frequent shortage of recognition within companies: the capacity to recognize sincerely, with humanity and simplicity the quality of the work done, in all its dimensions. Sometimes, companies invest in “manager coach” training programs, to contribute to a “change in attitude”. It’s true, it may help…
Because we often lack being thanked, let’s take our inspiration from the classical pillars of sustainability, to create engagement with simple and daily actions, and therefore magnify the power of recognition.
You’ve sent all your best wishes, and have decided, at last, to change “something” this year, and to take some good resolutions! Your decision is made, you will implement a few things that will contribute to make this new year different, motivating, healthy, with different human relations, or a capacity to step back… As people say, good resolutions are like eels, the devil lies in holding them tight!
“Life is about making choices, and choosing means eliminating”1aiming at work-life balance, by Sophie Audubert-Todorovic.
Let’s assume that you’ve already read many management and leading change theories: change curve is a classic concept, you’ve identified the reasons for resistance and access to autonomy, you’ve spent some time surfing the internet about emotional intelligence, various communication techniques, collaborative management…You are aware of the hiring of some Chief Happiness Officers (C.H.O.) and are convinced that there is more to life than the raw pursuit of profit. As my clients, you are capable of “analyzing what’s going on”, however not sufficient this might be. What could we do?
The “Mannequin Challenge” viewed by a business coach? By Sophie Audubert-Todorovic
As probably many of you did, I received regular messages on business social networks proudly announcing: “Have a look at our own mannequin challenge!” A click later, I had the surprise to discover… students, workers, managers, standing still in a professional attitude meant to show, thanks to non-verbal codes, the essential of their activity or their pleasure while working or learning, the challenge consisting in not moving during the video shooting. Of course, it’s another new web trend, probably nicer for their actors than the one consisting of filming oneself turning an ice-bucket over one’s head… I wondered what Louis Daguerre, the inventor of the process of photography, would say of this funny idea… remembering he asked his own model to stay immobile during hours to have a sharp picture, which made their smiles disappear.
Looking after yourself or egocentrism? by Sophie Audubert-Todorovic
Today, at the different levels of an organization, in global business environment, the values of cooperation, collaboration, sharing, listening and empathy are spread, as if it was essential to put forward the right way “to care about others”, particularly in a management position. To create a quality of work life, people insist on caring skills. And it is for sure legitimate, as it has been widely proved by various schools of thoughts, from sociology to neurosciences. Read more
“Effective coaching is often a matter of challenging assumptions, and the biggest assumptions often reside in the mind of the person being coached”, says John Baldoni.
The Harvard Business Review (HBR) has just published an article shedding good light on how to work best with an executive coach, from a customer’s perspective. This research article explains at length how to « make sure you get the most out of the experience » since working with a coach « can be a large investment of time and money ».