Imagine you’re working with a half-dozen colleagues on a cross-departmental project. Perhaps the project will take eight weeks and you will all need to get together once a week. But no one has been assigned as the leader of the project. You and your colleagues are all peers – you come from different departments, but you all have the same level of experience and seniority. How can you make a … Read more
I use personality questionnaires a lot in my work. When coaching a client, it can really help a client to understand their personality and the kinds of work that best suit them – as well as their likely strengths and weaknesses. When I interview candidates on behalf of employers, I use personality questionnaires to identify the kind of organisational culture that might suit them.
Here are 5 myths about introverts:… Read more
I speak at a lot of conferences and often get to watch other presenters. I also train people in how to give good presentations and speeches in public. I’ve advised people ranging from managers wanting to be more impactful at work to individuals giving eulogies at funerals. Whether you are speaking in person or speaking online, here are 7 ways people inadvertently end up giving bad presentations or speeches.
1. … Read more
Like most people, you probably want to be able to cope with more work so that you can achieve even more. But here’s the reality: there are only 24 hours in the day. So, before you think about committing to even more work and greater responsibilities, consider these five pointers.
1. Ruthlessly review all of your existing commitments
Sure, you can work longer hours. But how sustainable would that be … Read more
Unfortunately, most of us have either been on the receiving end of rudeness or have observed it going on around us. It’s something we are so used to that we probably just accept it. But here are 5 ways in which incivility can affect us.
1. Observing rudeness reduces performance and creativity
Of course being on the direct receiving end of rudeness can make us feel angry or frustrated. But … Read more
I often hear people saying that they feel frustrated that they haven’t been promoted yet. But people rarely get promoted simply for having worked in a role for a long time. In fact, some people get promoted despite having been in their roles for hardly any time at all.
Here are some observations on how to get promoted.
1. Recognise that doing your job is not enough
You should not … Read more
There’s an old English proverb that “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”.
For me, I think of the saying as a warning that working long, long hours but not taking the time out for leisure activities can make people feel bored – and perhaps even less able to achieve their goals. And a recent research study suggests that this may indeed be true. However, the researchers … Read more
What are your professional or personal goals right now? For my work, I’m trying to write more short pieces to put on my Instagram and LinkedIn profiles. And for myself, I am aiming to (and so far managing to) do three Youtube workouts a week. But what about your goals?
Psychological research continues to identify methods we can use to boost the likelihood that we will achieve our goals. I’ve … Read more
Research shows that it can take as little as ten minutes to improve our physical health, psychological wellbeing, and our mental performance.
All around the world, scientists have been discovering that simply spending time outdoors in nature has measurable, significant benefits for both physical and mental health. For example, an investigation led by Cornell University’s Genevive Meredith recently summarised the conclusions reached by multiple groups of researchers looking at time … Read more
Many people feel insecure or inadequate. Others say that they lack confidence or have low self-esteem. But even when the words differ, the end result is often the same.
My book The Confidence Project provides a wide variety of both quick fixes and longer-term techniques for boosting confidence. But here are five different tips and ways of looking at things:
1. Be careful about using positive self-affirmations
Some gurus and … Read more
I’ve written about mindfulness, its benefits in terms of stress and wellbeing – and how to work on it before. But here are 5 myths about mindfulness.
1. Mindfulness benefits everybody
WRONG! There are a small number of documented instances of mindfulness practice having adverse effects for some people.
A team of British, Italian and Spanish researchers led by William Van Gordon at the University of Derby recently pointed … Read more
When I meet with a client face-to-face, I tend to write notes using pen and paper. When I’m sat at my computer, I usually take notes using my keyboard. But what does the science say about the effectiveness of pen and paper versus keyboard and screen?
Researcher Audrey van der Meer at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology has run several studies using electroencephalogram (EEG) equipment to scan the … Read more
Surveys repeatedly find that many people report feeling stress as a result of their work.
I have written before about the fact that stress is not something that simply happens to you. You can take steps to deal with the emotional impact of problematic situations.
However, the best way to reduce stress is often to tackle the particular problem that is bothering you such as an individual colleague, a … Read more
Whenever I run a workshop (or give a lecture on Zoom) about stress, I usually start off by explaining that stress is not something that has to happen to you. Yes, certain events such as redundancy, relationship break-ups and illness tend to be difficult for many people. But some people help themselves to cope better.
In stressful circumstances, I’m sure you have heard that some people engage in a coping … Read more
Ask people what they want in life and they often say that they want to “be happy”. But why does happiness matter? And how can you achieve happiness?
1. Being happy may help you to be better at your job
Some people dismiss happiness as inconsequential. For example, I’ve heard a few managers say that they don’t really care whether their employees are happy so long as they are performing … Read more
What are your goals right now? I currently have a variety of professional and personal goals about staying in touch with clients, my eating and exercise habits, reading non-fiction books, improving my Cantonese language skills, staying in touch with friends and family, and so on.
A recent research paper in the journal Behavioural Public Policy by social scientists Samuli Reijula at the University of Helsinki and Ralph Hertwig of the … Read more