I have just been reviewing some feedback forms from a recent workshop. The comments were all very positive. What caught my eye was that one participant would have liked more theory whilst another wished that there had been more time for practicing what had been presented. The comments highlighted a major dilemma when creating workshops - focus. Over the years I have come to accept that the perfect workshop probably doesn’t exist, there are so many variables that all one can hope for is clarity of purpose; what are we (collectively) trying to achieve?
So, in the coming weeks I will review what is currently delivered with reference to the stated aims and objectives of the course. But in addition to this I will see how more real-time reflection may help trainers and their delivery. There are Lots of theories about reflective practice, my simplified approach is to differentiate between reflecting as a workshop progresses, in real time, and reflecting after the event. I accept that changing things to suit the needs of individual participants (on-the-day) is often impossible, but maybe it’s worth looking to the group for more guidance about the direction they want to take. I find good Trainers are very aware of the ‘pace’ of a session, it may be time for us all to look at content as a more fluid commodity.
As I write it occurs to me that I must avoid change for the sake of change. The workshop went very and trainer was well received. I need to make sure that any ‘tweaks’ I make actually make the experience better not worse.
I was attracted to an article by James Hurley at - thetimes.co.uk - the headline began;
‘Olderpreneurs’ insist retiring is for wimps…
It would seem that today many more people over the age of 65 are choosing to either start new businesses or continue to run established businesses. Retirement seems to be a declining option.
This reminded of an interesting video on youtube. I realise that the information is from 2013 and talks about the USA; but I think it translates well for the UK and speaks to the the future of older people generally.
I was "Driving along in my automobile..." and out of the blue I was asked the difference between morals and ethics. BANG! What should have been a simple question set up a chain-reaction of thoughts that led me to say (feebly), I will look-it-up.
It's not that I needed help with the words themselves it's just that I realised, in that moment, that the way society regulates itself is changing so much that the question was worth a lot more thought.
For context: whilst waiting in a supermarket car park, I saw a 'decent' looking middle-aged woman load her upmarket car and then 'dump' her trolly right in the middle of the roadway (the trolly holder place thingy, was only a few yards away). My question was, if society has changed so much that apparently decent people think it's acceptable to act this way, what will real 'yobs' get up to?
So - having read about the rights of the individual, that morality may not be 'universalizable' and that the influence of christian morality may be diminishing, I have come up with my answer -
'Morals represent what is accepted as right and wrong within any given societal group. Ethics concerns how a societal group uses their 'moral-sense' to control the actions of it's members.'
The problem now is my wife has probably forgotten the question. Oh well, it keeps me off the streets.
I was intrigued by the Daily Mail headline (20 February 2017) that a quarter of households have less than £100 in savings. So I took a look at the report this was taken from: the AVIVA Family Finances Report January 2016.
The 3 things that really stood out for me were –
Average household debt is up.
1 in 5 families have made no financial provision for the future.
“Almost half of parents have not discussed what might happen to their family if the worst was to happen to them.”
If any of this applies to you, to quote one of my favourite movies
• Most debt is taken on variable rate lending and most people are on fixed incomes.
• As the future comes your ability to earn will likely diminish
• Over 500,000 people a year die in the UK so 1 in every 128 people are likely to die in any given 12 month period.
To quote another of my favourite movie
“…death and taxes…what an odd pairing…”
Odd but true! All financial planning has to take into account the need for tax free lump sums especially in the aftermath of the unexpected death of a ‘bread-winner”.
This lump sum will invariably be eaten into by the need to pay off debts.
I am not preaching. I am just trying to tell it how I wish I had been told when I was starting out.
• AVOID/REDUCE DEBT.
• PROTECT YOUR FAMILY AGAINST YOUR UNTIMELY DEATH.
• PUT SOMETHING AWAY EVERY MONTH FOR THE FUTURE.
I know it’s a struggle. I know it takes time. I also know of the tragedy of loss and the fear that comes with an unknown future.
If you are in this sort of situation please do something about it today. If you need help or guidance email me. I will do my best to help.
August 13, 2016 the BBC website.
Here is a headline that caught my eye -
''What can football managers teach business?'
As a ‘crossover’ sports and business coach I thought two of the points from Jose Mourinho were worth expanding on.
Firstly: Mr Mourinho expressed the idea that it isn't just good enough to hire someone with skills. Time has to be spent making sure the newcomer performs as expected.
To me this point revolves almost entirely around the change in culture (and systems) that all new recruits face in their new role.
How do you stop the inevitable culture shift crushing a new recruit?
This is an issue that all managers/employees face every time they recruit people into an existing team.
The reality is that any newcomer will have some difficulty in fitting into an existing structure and the people within that structure will have some difficulty accepting the new member.
It is important then that the new employee, the employer and the existing team, all have a clear view of what is wanted. To this end: good preparation and planning will make for smoother transitions. To help with this I have used the following sequence to great effect -
When applying this throughout an organisation I keep in mind that the preparation for an administrative person may well be less involved than what would be needed for a senior manager. But, it always holds true that: the better the preparation, the more likely your new recruit will be a success at any level.
As an added bonus I have found this approach also helps attract better quality recruits. The attention to detail displayed in this approach shows that your organisation takes a professional and serious approach to recruitment. This, in turn, demonstrates your willingness to invest time and effort in their future success.
The second point raised, that I strongly identify with, was the notion that, for most people, it's not all about the money.
Why does ‘showing people the money’ not always work?
I learned a long time ago this almost never just about the money. Whilst money, benefits and perks are all important there are other things to consider. It is reported, in the article, that Mr Mourinho talks about 'a greater good’ and a ‘joy' of doing something.
I liken this to 'hot button sales'. It is important to find out what motivates people beyond money. Once you have identified what drives an individual you can decide if it suits your organisation and culture and you can then build it into your planning of their success.
This is a broad subject but it is my experience that there are three main drivers in business today: recognition, team loyalty and work-life balance.
I want to conclude by emphasising that, past performance may be a huge indicator of future success. BUT success, especially where change is involved, almost always needs a helping hand. Typically my way of helping starts with detailed planning and a clear-view of what everyone is trying to achieve.
Note: As usual, everything here suggests as many questions as it answers and not everything can be covered in one session. If you are a member why don’t you contact me directly and I will answer any questions you may have.
Recently three things set me thinking.
So here is what I was thinking. The reality is; we will all face problems at some point in both our personal and professional lives (“Into each life some rain must fall” Longfellow). It is how we deal with those problems that will ultimately define what sort of life we live. The really interesting thing is that most of the problems that may befall us are predictable. Births, deaths, marriages, ill health, moving home etc.
We are not alone and we are not unusual. We only have to look around and learn from other people’s lives. If we raise our awareness of what’s going on around us it will help us plan for all eventualities (good and bad). Another NFL great Bill Walsh talks about expecting defeats, relentlessly and intelligently seeking solutions and always creating ‘contingency’ plans.
What does this all mean to you?
This type of planning is covered in our Money and Life pages. It is amazing how having control of your finances will help most problems while practicing how to stay positive is best done when there is no ‘rain’ to trouble you.
NOTE: Click Here for an audio presentation of this post.