Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The New Social Learning

Things are not always as they seem.  They’re not as simple as they seem.  And social learning is no different.  Social learning is of course nothing new.  But how it’s accomplished is always changing.
 We’re not just talking Facebook and Youtube.  The New Social Learning: Connect. Collaborate. Work, by Tony Bingham and Marcia Conner, shows us how to capitalize on the people, tools, technology, and practices in order to increase engagement and collaboration.  In this book you will read about organizations that have transformed meaningful social learning into advantages over other organizations.

Don’t do what most people do and just focus on the tools.  How can they be used to your advantage?  People have a great desire to make a difference.  Learn here to facilitate the growth in the way people learn.  See how you can learn to “work outloud” to build learning relationships.

Share this book with your training, marketing, and HR departments.  Heck, all departments.  And don’t forget the leadership team.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Collaboration Begins with You

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about reviewing books, it’s don’t miss a Ken Blanchard book.
 Collaboration Begins with You: Be a Silo Buster, is no different.  This new book by Ken, Jane Ripley, and Eunice Parisi-Carew is a book for every employee.  We shouldn’t wait for a culture of collaboration to begin from the top.  It begins with you.

The authors share a parable - which makes it an easy read for everyone - on the three-part approach to busting silos around you; the heart, the head, and the hands.  Put it all together and it provides a way for us to change our beliefs of collaboration so that we can truly work together instead of just going through the motions.  In order for collaboration to really work properly, it needs to become company-wide . . . and accepted.

So you think you, or your organization, are already collaborative.  Try the self-assessment towards the end of the book.  You may soon feel a bit different about those thoughts.  It’s easy for organizations to fall into the beliefs of how good they think they are.  But once you actually, honestly look at the Heart, Head, and Hands domains of collaboration, you might very well see that, Hmm, we have some work to do.

This book will show you how to break down the barriers and get started, instead of waiting for it to filter down.  The outcome?  A collaborative mindset leading to increased trust and productivity.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Flip Flops in the Office

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day about things his manager does that drives
him nuts (many).  The one issue that really struck a cord was flip flopping.

I've had a couple of managers throughout my working years that were pros at flip flopping. Whether it was making changes to a new SOP and eventually flipping right back to the way it was originally written, or telling me to do one thing and then completely going off when it's being done.  

Now don't get me wrong.  There's nothing wrong with changing your mind.  Things change. Circumstances change.  I totally expect it.  But to be a good and trusted leader, you must take the time to think things through.  Knee jerk reactions have a bad habit of coming back on you.  People start to wonder what the interpretation of the day is.  You may think it doesn't affect you, but it affects your team and the way they do their jobs and the way they think about you, whether positively or negatively.  Flip-flopping will eventually lead to people throwing up their arms and giving up and negatively impacting the culture.  Then everyone's productivity goes down.

I think a lot of it comes down to time management.  Throughout the last 20 years or so I can't even count the number of times I've heard how "busy" people are, and that's their excuse for not reacting or thinking through.  Everyone is busy, but time is an important factor in good leadership.  You have to make the time.  Leaders are role models, whether that means good ones or bad ones.  The easier you make your teams job, the easier you're going to make your job.