Self-Awareness Workshops

How You Treat People

A big part of self-awareness is to be so happy with yourself that it influences your interactions with others positively. It means that you’re healthy, balanced and able to treat others well. When people are unhappy they tend to put their problems on others and interact in less than optimal ways. The better you feel about yourself, the better you’ll treat others and the more positive results you’ll experience.

Take care,

Guy

Think of the Possibilities

A lot of people limit their self-awareness because they look at goals in terms of how difficult or unachievable they are or they are stuck on one particular outcome. Think of the power you’ll have when you look at any challenge in terms of the possibilities it offers. Suddenly, you have a lot more options available to you.

Take care,

Guy

There’s an I in Team Building

I get a lot of questions about team building revolving around how to bring people together, help employees work well in groups or encourage people to get along. The focus always seems to be on a group of people rather than individuals.  Over many years of helping people build dynamic, productive teams I’ve found that an excellent place to start is with the I.  Nothing happens without I and here are five reasons why.  

You Don’t Believe Team Building Works

If you’re not into team building then no amount of cajoling or  persuading is going to convince you that team building can help you build a more positive workplace. You’ll likely not participate fully or buy into team building activities or creating a workplace philosophy that encourages it.

You Believe that People are Solely Individual Achievers

This mindset creates motivated individuals who act alone as free agents rather than contributing to the well-being of the group.  This includes instances of the “star salesman” or “go-to guy” who are enshrined because they do such a great individual job.  What happens when we idolize individuals is that we create a culture where one person is more important than the other.  Great teams are about people being equally valuable and important.

You Can’t Yet See the Long-Term Benefits of Team Building

Perhaps you’ve never worked in an organization where people worked together and got more done with less effort.  Maybe all you’ve seen is people backstabbing and competing with each other so you’ve surmised that it has to be that way. Team building is part of a long-term strategy that helps you and your employees build a workplace where people are able to problem-solve and support each other.

You Think Other People Build Teams, Not You

Team building is fine to get the rabble working together but you’re above the fray. This leads in almost every instance to you not being part of the team. This perspective overlooks that you can actually benefit from actively participating and being part of a team.  

You Try to Avoid Conflict

It’s hard to navigate the challenges or conflicts that arise when people work together.  Most people stay stuck “agreeing to disagree” instead of learning skills to actually work together and build strong teams.  It’s the act of working together to resolve conflicts that builds more effective workplaces.

The thread that runs through all these examples is that they all begin with you. You decide whether you create the conditions necessary to promote excellent team building in your workplace.  You choose whether it’s a priority or a band aid when you’ve already reached meltdown.

The key to successful team building is to practice and promote the skills that will help you and your people work well together.  What will you do to make team building happen in your workplace?

Take care,

Guy

20 Ways to Tell Your Organization Doesn’t Value People

Proactive leaders “get it” about treating their employees well but I run across many others who don’t share that perspective.  Many leaders and organizations tend to focus on the bottom line at the exclusion of everything else.  This leaves their employees struggling to keep up with ever-increasing demands to do more work in less time and at a higher level.  This has the predictable result of burning people out and creating unhappy workplaces.

I’ve found that organizations can be highly productive and support their employees but that approach isn’t even on the radar in many workplaces.
Leaders and organizations demonstrate how much they value their people by the actions they take.  Here are 20 signs you might be valuing other things instead of your employees.

  1. You have high employee turnover.
  2. You give out commands but don’t ask for feedback.
  3. HR is just a way to avoid lawsuits.
  4. People get shown the door quickly if they don’t like company policies or go against the status quo.
  5. There is low morale and motivation and people seem unhappy.
  6. Productivity is low even though you’ve tried many things to increase it.
  7. Your employees shrug or look perplexed when you say, “Employees come first in this company.”
  8. Your workplace is consistently more stressful than it has to be and it’s affecting people’s performance.
  9. Leadership doesn’t listen to employees.
  10. Leadership makes unilateral decisions without seeking input from employees at every level.
  11. Information is hoarded at the top.
  12. There’s little two-way communication between leadership and employees.
  13. Employees are viewed as expendable, as in, “There’s more where she came from,” or, “If you don’t like it, I’ve got a hundred other people who could fill this job.”
  14. You offer very few opportunities for advancement.
  15. Limited or non-existent training and educational opportunities.
  16. You say things like, “At least he’s got a job,” or “I’m providing jobs for people,” to justify a less than wonderful work environment.
  17. Touchy-feely is a bad word in your organization.
  18. Diversity is a scary and contentious concept in your workplace.
  19. You notice chronic ongoing conflict between employees.
  20. Lack of benefits for employees.

These types of behaviors happen all the time in innumerable workplaces.  The remarkable thing is that many leaders seem to think that it’s the only way to run an organization.  Thankfully, we now know that we can create thriving and highly productive organizations while treating our employees well the moment leaders choose to do so.  What do you do to make sure your employees feel valued?

Take care,

Guy

Team Building: Healing Your Workplace

Team building and healing are strongly linked in the workplace because teams can’t function well if everyone is walking around carrying personal grudges and hurts.  It often falls on the team leader to help everyone function effectively but it’s nearly impossible if he or she is carrying around a lot of negative energy.

There are many negative workplace experiences that affected people negatively.  Individuals sometimes hold on to these feelings for a long time even when they realize intellectually that they would be better off letting them go.  I train leaders and employees about how they can end this cycle of negative feelings and thoughts and build stronger teams and it almost always begins with healing.

Healing your workplace is one of the most important concepts for you and your employees’ well being and it begins with healing yourself.  If you think about it, you deal with people very differently when you are healthy rather than hurt.  If you want to create a work environment that is free of hurts from the past, then think about the following questions.

1.  What do I need to heal?

This question will help you define what it is that you need to look at.  There is no right or wrong answer, you get to decide what part of you or your workplace is hurt and then you get to heal it.  No issue is to small or trivial, if you need to heal it it is a valid starting point.  You can have several issues but try to pick one to start on.

2.  How will I heal myself?

There are many avenues you can take to heal yourself and they almost always involve getting help from an outside person who can help you get a clear perspective.  You benefit from realizing that you need help and then reaching out to someone who can partner with you to make it happen.  There is no right or wrong approach to healing, look for an approach that works for you.  Some people talk to a friend, others a therapist and others HR.

3.  How will I know that I am healed?

The goal of healing is to come to terms and feel at peace with the issues you face.  You will know you are healed when an issue no longer stirs negative feelings inside you.  You will also see improvements in your day to day work life because that issue won’t be affecting you in the same way.  Healing can take time so be patient and keep working on taking care of yourself.  Take it easy on yourself and only work on healing one thing at a time.  Once you feel better about one thing then you are then ready to move on to the next issue.

Do some careful thinking about these three questions and you will begin the process of discovering what hurts and how to heal it.  The idea is not to reopen terrible wounds and relive those moments, it’s to acknowledge that you have an issue and work on it.  Once you heal yourself you’ll be in a great position to help your team do the same.  The result is a workplace where people aren’t working out their personal stuff on each other.  How will you start healing your workplace?

Take care,

Guy