Last week I participated in an all-employee meeting during which I shared our philosophy about creating a culture of continuous learning. I was frank when I told everyone that the “training department” will not be able to provide everything people need to be great at their jobs and that each one of us need to make a commitment to our own development. However, even though training cannot be the main solution to our development needs at work, the “training department” can make available resources to help people-development skills. I shared with the group a simple, three-part model for how each one of us can constantly develop our skills and prepare for the next stages in our careers.
Even great employees can get into a performance rut, where the monotony of doing the same thing day in and day out can turn into a sort of mindlessness. Nobody intends to get in a rut, but few people actively seek out the changes that can help them pull out of one. That’s where managers can to step in and give a change-averse employee a kick-start.
About a month ago, I gave up my office and set up in the cubicles with the rest of my employees.
Studies show that diverse teams are more creative teams. But the research is just as clear that having folks with very different backgrounds working together is also a source of conflict, and that teams need solid communication skills to reap the benefits of that diversity.
I thought we all agreed that most of the meetings we attend are a waste of time. We discussed it in the halls, we sent IMs and emails to each other, and we snickered while the boss rambled on for 20 minutes about how hard he'd been working on that critical, can’t fail, top-priority, all-hands-on-deck, it-is-what-it-is, drop-everything-else-you're-doing-to-help-him-impress-the-VP project that no one seems to understand.
We’ve been training employees on several new procedures and approaches recently in my workplace. But what’s been bothering me is the question of why some of these practices, which include really sound and important information, make it into our employees’ workdays, and why others don’t.
For the start of a new year, I thought I would draft a letter you can use with your employees — a way to challenge them to be better in all that they do in 2012. If you like it, please feel free to use it (or edit it as you wish). I find this is also a good message to share with family. Have a happy and successful New Year.
If you aren't yet familiar with the Dunning-Kruger effect you’re missing out (and if you are, you’re bound to be pleased to be reminded of this old friend). It’s an idea that explains so very many aggravating things in the world of business, and perhaps the world in general.
We had our office holiday party last night. Almost everyone came and brought their special someone. We all had a terrific time.
Forget the calendars and Christmas sale TV ads. To my mind, winter only starts when everyone I see on the train in the morning is wearing a scarf. And this week, everyone was. So it must be official – winter’s here, and 2011 is almost over.