“Normality” for humans post COVID-19

15 May, 2020 Comments off

What ever was ‘normal’? It will more then likely depend on your definition of the word, but typically it meant whatever was happening most regularly. For example,  we all know that it is not normal from a health or even human perspective to be overweight but as society has become more psychologically reliant on food and we now have such a high percentage of our pollination being overweight THIS is considered normal.

So, normal for some was affluence, even avarice and without care or concern of others, for some it was abject poverty and disrepair, yet for many of us it was on the scale in between these two extremes.

So should we even be contemplating returning to the old normal? No!

Thinking about returning to an old normal would be a complete waste of time and energy. It would be like trying to turn back time. Things HAVE changed, attitudes have changed, along with fear and anxiety as will as the opportunities that have appeared and the lessons we have learnt – as individuals, groups, cultures and as humanity.

Humans have culturally evolved to acquire knowledge and beliefs through copying others. Although advances in science, religion and society is usually by invention (by looking at the evidence and deciding for ourselves), few people are inclined to this way of thinking, much of the time these same people are ostracised until the majority eventually realise “oh-ah that’s a good idea”.  And this is why the “news” can also have such a negative affect on each of us and all of us. Try this to see whether you are like most people or one of the enlightened, inventive ones: part one – turn on your favourite news channel and then try to DISAGREE with everything they present, part two – now turn on a channel you actually dislike and try to find a way to AGREE with everything they present.  The critical question here is, are you able to use critical thinking and decipher what is actually news (information) or do you struggle and go back to preferring your original channel because it supports your view of the world.

So the challenge is to make the New Normal better than it was. Keep that which did work for our (humanity’s) benefit and let go of that which added no value or was detrimental. This is an opportunity that only comes around after a major catastrophe, so we need to make the most of this opportunity and not squander it for we certainly do not want  another catastrophe. We CANNOT rely on the misinformation and disinformation drafted and distributed by those with a political or financial agenda AND if you start saying “oh its the XXXX, who are being political, not my team” then it is you who are part of the problem and you ARE being seduced and deluded  by the politicians.

Nearly every century there has been a major event that changed the way humanity behaved and progressed, sometimes this was a regression (backwards) as with the ‘Dark Ages” beginning around the 5th century. It is now OUR time to move forward, learn the lessons and become better at being human.

This challenge for the “new”  will rely of ALL of us to step up. Are you up for the challenge or will you sit back, look back and wait for someone else to decide your fate.


Other light reading. Some of which I agree with, some not, some is just information:

That “Problem” Employee

13 July, 2020 Comments off

In the past I have written articles on how to engage, motivate and mentor your staff and you may say that’s great, but what about those who are not open to change or improvement, even with authentic help and intention.

If you are in a large corporation you have probably got a lot of resource behind you so you may/should know this. On the other hand, if you are a new manager or in a small company this may be of interest.

Problem staff – Yes, there are those who just don’t work out, who seem to suck the life out of the you (the Manager) and/or their team mates. So you if have done all the things I mentioned in my earlier articles; you dug deeper, gave them feedback, encouraged them, explained the consequences and yet whatever their (real) reason, they are not sharing them with you or don’t want to change and remain having a negative affect on you, the team, the outcomes or all of the above.

1.     Firstly – accept that this person probably won’t change – they might surprise you though. Research by Christine Porath shows that up to 4% of people engaging in this sort of behaviour do so because they “like getting away with it” yes, to them it’s a game.

2.     Now things get serious. Serious as in everything must be documented, if it gets awkward you will need to prove you have followed protocols and always considered their situation. So, when they do something wrong, diarize it and advise HR (or whoever ‘looks after” HR in your organisation), do the same for each of the discussions after you brought the incidents up with them.

3.     Don’t ignore the problem. Do not make excuses for them or hide what they are doing. Always bring the incident to their attention and work through it as per the company’s documented processes. But also, don’t keep harping on forever, it can be seen as bullying, stick to the process, call it out then make a final decision when needed.

4.     If possible, don’t let the toxicity of this person influence the others. Try to keep them away from others as much as possible during work. You won’t/can’t stop them outside work hours so do not try. But during work, it lets the rest of your team get on with it.

5.     Don’t let them distract you into spending all your time managing them. Remember, these people really are high maintenance, they will suck up your time very quickly if you let them. Keep control of your ego and dont make it personal, learn the official process and use it.

6.     Be consistent – make sure you treat them the same way every time, all the time. This goes for all your staff, do not treat any individual better or worse than the others. If it is proven you have done this, you may find your problems have grown. And, don’t change the rules or requirements, don’t give them a moving target as this will be to your detriment – they might be taking notes about you!

7.     Stay on track – Work through the official company processes to manage these people. It helps you stay focused and minimises the effect of personalities and egos.

8.     Do not trash them to others – Always talk to HR, but not others. This is not information for discussion with the general populace or others who have an opinion – maintain your integrity. There is no issue getting advice, but the first port of call should be HR.

9.     Be strong – it is not easy firing someone. If it is the right thing to do, as a manager it is your role to do it. Do not pass the buck onto HR or another Manager/Supervisor, remember this person worked for you. It also shows that you respect yourself and your role, and when done properly and ethically, your team will respect you.

10.   Learn from the experience. This is a must, you want to repeat this at little as possible, but if you must so be it.

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) – are you there yet?

20 June, 2020 Comments off

Work on reducing these to increase your EQ:

1. Criticising others (this is control and not to be confused with Critical THINKING)
2. Worrying about the future (ILLUSION of controlling uncertainty)
3. Ruminating on the past (another ILLUSION of control)
4. Maintaining unrealistic expectations of others (veiled attempt at – again – control).

Great YouTube post to get clarity ->

Categories: Personal Tags: , ,

Which “Game” are you playing.

4 June, 2020 Comments off

Business, Politics and Education are all INFINITE games (Very long term). To play this game the following are required

  • A Just Cause
  • Courageous Leadership
  • Trusting Team
  • A worthy Rival
  • A Flexible Play-book

In the infinite game there are no winners and no losers, just those in the game and those that drop out because they cannot keep playing.

If ONE of these is missing there will be a slide into a FINITE game (short term – Winner/Loser).

Simon Sinek explains the how to stay in the infinite game  – It is fairly obvious in today’s Geopolitical landscape which Politicians which politicians are confused over which game they are in – so not succeeding in either.  I have included a shorter version (2nd click) if time is a constraint .

Which “Game”  is your company in?

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tye525dkfi8 (~26min)
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bFs6ZiynSU (~10min)