Thank you for attending the Mastering Workplace Performance seminar, in Woodloch, Pennsylvania. It is always an honor to work with people interested in making their best...better! Below, please see some reminders I'd encourage you to consider post-seminar:
1) Practice on the small things, to perform on the big ones!
I'm a big believer in a Japanese concept called "Kaizen." In its essence, Kaizen means continual (and often small) improvement in processes, systems and management. In our Mastering Workplace Performance sessions, we have "just enough" time to share some of the basic principles of workflow management and professional productivity. Leaving those presentations, it's up to each individual to decide which (if any) changes they're going to begin experimenting with to make changes to their behaviors, routines and workflow systems.
Remember, I talked about experimenting in "fives." Five days, five weeks, five months, five years...and, I have examples of all three. Just email me if you'd like to hear about them! (For more information on the 5-day experiment, click here.)
2) Journal. Every. Day.
I absolutely trust in the power of writing things down. I'm working with a group of clients right now in our Mastering Workplace Performance Online program and we're doing an "Assignment" that is a 5-day experiment on journaling. At the end of each day, simply write one or two lines of what happened that day...Try it out for a week and see what happens!
3) Build your learning library.
Start by visiting the Books We Recommend website. Of course, you don't need to buy ALL the books there (unless, of course, you want to build your library this week!). Instead, look through some of them, read some reviews, and decide which the first few books should be. If you want, give me a call, 805.640.6401, and we'll discuss "where-are-you-and-where-are-you-going" topics to identify the first 2-3 books to start with. I mentioned a few books during the session on 2010-10/14 that I'd like to remind you of:
- Don't Shoot the Dog, by Karen Pryor
- The Greatest Salesman in the World, by Og Mandino
- The One Minute Manager, by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson
Of course, if you're going to pick up some books on such topics of leadership, marketing, innovation or mentoring, I'd start with a quick YouTube search for the popular authors out there talking about these topics. A FAVORITE site of mine is www.TED.com. See some samples below...
Leadership: Sir Richard Branson
Marketing: Seth Godin
Innovation: Sergey Brin and Larry Page
Mentoring: James Cameron
4) Make your best, better...by knowing what it takes to be your best.
Yes, that exercise in the seminar where we fill in the page, "I am at my best when..." is one that I continue to advise leaders to bring back to their teams and their companies. I have heard of people using that one activity to radically shift the overall energy of their organization by simply "getting on the same page" as far as the things that are going to go a LONG way in making things better. IF enhancing your productivity is something that you want to do "more of," then consider stopping long enough each day to ensure you have what you need TO enhance your productivity.
Ask yourself whether what you are doing, and what you have done up to know, is setting you up to have a "good day." As subjective as that is, it's important to know what would make for a good day, what would make for an effective, efficient, productive day. Then, use that knowledge to your advantage. Want a reminder of the "I'm at my best when..." activity? Click here...
5) Reach out to share some of the ideas you got from the seminar. We all learn more when we teach something.
Think about what happens when someone joins your team; the first few weeks (or months) you spend time, energy and focus teaching them what they need to know. Development Managers, you learn things the deepest...you learn it when you learn it, and you deepen the learning when you teach it! Lack of time is one of the favorite complaints people have to explain their day-to-day productivity (or, lack thereof). Instead of focusing on the one resource we really have the least control over, turn instead to the other ones that you CAN control:
Systems/Tools: Learning something about your mobile phone, your computer desktop or laptop, even your digital camera that will help you get more done...faster. If you want a GREAT system to get you going on the right track, click here, and get all you can from my friend Allyson.
Focus: By experimenting with different ways you can drive, maintain, change and lose your focus, you'll set yourself up for a much more effective day. In the Afternoon portion of our seminar on November 14th, I talked about the place and importance of Agendas. This is one "focus" tool that can save up to 30 minutes each day. Oh, and remember that question I asked you to ask at the end of each phone meeting: "What, in about a week, will you wish we had talked about sooner?"
Energy: Our mental and physical energy dictate how much focus we have (or don't have). If we're tired, stressed out or hungry, we will be less productive. If we're alert, engaged and well-fed, we can give more of ourselves to any giving task or project. I would say of all the things we talked about during the seminar, many of them have their root in identifying our energy boosters (completion, delegation, engagement, teamwork, etc) and using those to our greatest advantage...