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Saying NO is more important than you think…

You finally get around to organising that weekend away with the family – you know, the one you’ve been promising for the last 100 weekends – when your boss comes to you on Thursday afternoon and says: “We’ve just found out that we’ve won that new contract! But we must have all the logistics in place by next Friday. You’re the only one here that can do that, Jack, but I’m afraid it’s going to mean you working this weekend”.

You start off on the right track… “I’ve got some family commitments this weekend…”, but then you pause…and the boss doesn’t fill the crucial silence…so you do…”but, I suppose I could re-arrange those…” and the deal is sealed with, “Thanks Jack – I knew I could rely on you!”

So why didn’t you say “no”? Was it because the whole team is depending on you? Maybe it’s because the annual reviews are due in the next couple of weeks and you really don’t want a black mark against your name at this time of year? Or do you just lack the assertiveness to spit it out? It could be something as simple as the fact that your family are easier to negotiate with than your boss – BUT, ask yourself who you would miss more if they weren’t around…???…!!!

I’m sure you could add your own examples here…but the main issue is very simple…

Saying, “Yes” when we really mean (and want to say!), “NO” is one of the biggest causes of extra work and associated stress.

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What do Google, Virgin and Walt Disney have in common…???

Answer: FUN!!!

It’s Monday morning. It’s 07.00. As you swing your legs out of bed to start another week, what motivates you to go to work? What presses your buttons? What lights up your lights?

We’ve had lots of answers to that question over the years… “It pays the bills…”,I feel obliged”, “It gets me away from the partner and kids” and my all-time favourite, “It’s a viable alternative to daytime television” are amongst the negative ones.

But we also get some great positive ones – “My work is always interesting and challenging”, “I really feel part of a team at work” and, every now and then… “My workplace is just great FUN!”

Try putting the word FUN in the same sentence as the word WORK and see what kind of response you get from Bosses! The initial responses we often get when raising the subject range from the patronising, “I don’t really think that will work here” to the verging on apoplectic, McEnroe-esque, “You can NOT be serious!”

There is something almost akin to the Darkside when linking FUN and WORK – we can almost hear Yoda saying to Luke Skywalker, “Good Manager he was, until work and fun brought together he did!”

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Gold Medal Communications

For as long as I’ve been in management and consulting the absolute Number 1 personal and company problem I’ve encountered in almost every company has been Communications!

And it’s so simple and tangible and yet so very hard to resolve….
And, as always, the answer is not really that hard – you just need to know where to look for it.

Because if we focus on “fixing” communication, it’s not going to work – what we really need to focus on is what comes before and after communication.

So let me ask you two vital questions:

  1. What is it that is not happening, that you’re not feeling or experiencing when you’re communicating?
  2. And, secondly, what is it that you need to do, change or be in order to get there?

So let’s say you want to be a powerful, credible communicator so that people act on your advice and instructions and, ideally, without the need to repeat yourself, cajole or threaten – then you should focus on building your credibility as a speaker and communicator.

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Fun at Work – the Google Australia Way

OK…so it’s January and its heads down and bums up time for everyone who has a contribution to make to 2017!

But there is still no good reason to banish FUN from the work environment and I thought you might like the short video attached.

We all know about Google being a “fun” place to work, but, until recently most of the promo was about their US operations and we might have been forgiven for thinking that it was a one-off location or mindset…but the good news is that the same philosophy to having GREAT FUN while achieving GREAT THINGS is the norm here in Australia as well!

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