New Year’s resolutions often focus on losing, quitting or saving something. Whether it’s losing weight, quitting cigarettes or saving money, resolutions emphasise a desire to be healthier and happier. For small business owners, aiming for a healthier, happier business in 2015 starts by making others the centre of attention — specifically employees.
Yearly Archives: 2014
The media paints a fairly negative picture of the workplace. Wages are too low. There’s gender inequality. Work-life balance is a problem. Productivity or skills are poor. There are scandals of every variety and mistakes in mergers, outsourcing and financial trades. Today’s workers are frustrated, unproductive and miserable – or so you would think from the coverage.
Are you thinking about your New Year’s Resolutions yet? This week’s round-up might be a good place to start; here are some recent stories about good and bad workplace habits to adopt to help make your day more productive and your work mindset better.
We’re getting closer to finding out who will be named this year’s winner of the prestigious partnership with Lord Sugar himself, and we think this might just have been the best season of The Apprentice yet. There’ve been the usual personality clashes, the hilarious soundbites and the fist-bitingly awful gaffes, but that’s precisely what makes the programme such an addictive watch.
I remember listening to a scientist a long time ago who was making the point that while we make astounding advances in certain areas of science, other areas remain frustratingly the same. Take for example, the way in which blood is extracted in medicine. The humble needle is still the primary tool – a tool, which hasn’t changed significantly in a considerable period of time. This point came to mind the other day when I listened to a conversation on the radio about working from home. It appears that attitudes to remote working have not evolved significantly while work practices and other attitudes relating to our work lives have changed greatly.
For many of us, the humble desk is where we spend the majority of our days. So isn’t it time we made it a happier place to spend our time?
We’ve conducted a little research to help you make your little corner of the office (home or otherwise) a more pleasant place to be, and think that the perfect desk comprises the following things:
“Meetings are a great way to fill my working day,” said nobody, ever.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s a quick catch-up with a colleague or a regular team get-together – a meeting should serve a purpose and have at least a bare minimum agenda (and no, three bullets two minutes before the meeting do not qualify as an agenda). Otherwise the meeting is really just a waste of time that could be better spent getting on with “real” work, or even doing non work-related stuff.
The theme for this week’s round-up is giving presentations & public speaking – a topic we discuss a lot on this blog and that is certainly a popular one in general.
From tips to improve your speaking style to ways to make your presentation more engaging, see below for some of the best recent articles on presentations.
The future of work is high tech and – perhaps even more important – mobile. Mobile technology allows for on-the-go access to information, increased productivity, flexibility for where and how work gets done, and improved customer support. Here are four reasons why the future of sales depends on mobile technology.
Secret Santa is meant to be a little bit of light-hearted fun, to help spread some festive cheer around the office. It’s a nice way of making sure that everyone receives a gift, with no one being excluded. Nowadays most companies advise on a budget of around £5, and while that doesn’t buy an awful lot, with some thought and preparation it can be enough to cause a giggle or two.
The CBI is calling for businesses to take flexible working more seriously, following the publishing of a YouGov poll yesterday which showed that around 42% of workers would feel uncomfortable asking their employer if they could work more flexibly.
What mode of transport do you use to get to work? And while you’re en-route, do you use the time to catch up on emails, plan how you’ll tackle your to-do list, or even make a start on the day’s tasks? Chances are that, for most of you, the facilities on your daily commute aren’t fit for any of those tasks.
Your company’s reputation is its most valuable non-tangible asset.
We work to make sure that in business we have a ‘good name’. Yet, like a character out of ‘Downton Abbey’ we know that society will shun us for the slightest misdemeanour… I don’t mean getting a house-maid pregnant or shooting a footman… that’s taking the whole ‘Downton’ thing a bit far… But if you have a reputation for poor customer service, or shoddy goods, or not delivering what you promise, whether B2B or B2C you will get, what the Dowager Countess would call (with a raised eyebrow and a slight tilt of the head) a ‘reputation’.
If you ask a child what they want to be when they grow up, they invariably will say teacher, footballer, nurse or ballerina. But in the entire history of time, I don’t expect many children have answered project manager! It’s one of those vocations that creeps up on you, and suddenly you’re managing multiple global projects with six figure budgets attached, potentially with little formal training in the area.
Change is the only constant in business, and most failure during times of change usually happens as a result ineffective communication and engagement.
On 12 November 2014, 550 people joined us for a live webinar to hear Lynne Copp, organisational development and change expert, explore the common pitfalls of working through change and receive top tips for presenting to employees and securing the engagement of not just their minds, but also their hearts.
We’ve shared the recording below so you too can benefit from viewing the webinar.
When was the last time you did something different at lunch?
Instead of sitting at your desk and working through yet another lunch hour, why not try and break a world record? Apparently it’s possible. Check out this infographic from the team over at Chair Office and try spicing up your lunch break with a few record breaking attempts (and if you’re successful, please let us know!).
More than half of managers don’t trust everyone or almost everyone they work with according to a recent research report by the Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM).
Yet trust underpins effective working relationships. The more someone trusts a colleague, manager or team member, the greater the likelihood they will co-operate, share information and work effectively together