When was the last time you reviewed your LinkedIn profile to make sure it’s really working for you? Gone are the days when the sole need for this was to secure your next position; millions of us across the globe now use LinkedIn on a daily basis for to seek new ideas and opinions, network and help others.
That said, if you are looking for your next move, it pays to make sure your profile really sells you in the best way, and that doesn’t mean it simply existing to be a carbon copy of the content on your CV. You can significantly multiply your profile views, connection requests and messages by taking some simple steps, such as having a great profile picture, a good balance of interpersonal skills / technical expertise and optimised keywords.
We love this ‘cheat sheet’ from Leisure Jobs. Even though LinkedIn significantly updated their interface in January 2017, much of the cheat sheet still holds true. Click the image below and put some time aside to work your way through your LinkedIn profile to give it the spring clean that it deserves!
Get in touch to find out how we can support your people and your business!
If you’ve ever wanted to communicate in a different, more effective way, find out why you need to watch our free webinar replay now to develop this vital interpersonal skill!
We communicate all the time, whether fighting our way onto the train in the morning, presenting monthly results to your boss or simply asking a team member to arrange time to catch up it’s an action and a skill that never sleeps. We are constantly in the process of trying to get others to understand us or understand them, so for a process that has no let-up we absolutely need to get to grips with it.
The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
George Bernard Shaw
How true is this quote?! Think about how often you’ve had a conversation with someone who swears blind that it didn’t happen, or they misunderstand what you’ve asked that you wish you hadn’t bothered asking in the first place!
Our personal style heavily influences how successful or unsuccessful our communication is, and our free webinar replay:
- Looks at why communication goes wrong so easily and identifies your preferred communication style.
- Gives practical tips on how to build your assertiveness and resilience.
- Focuses on how to better manage conflict by being assertive.
- Offers free resources to help you to develop your communication style!
Click below to register for the webinar replay and you will be able to watch it straight away! Find out how we can help you to develop communication and a range of other important interpersonal skills.
Please note: the webinar room opens a five minutes before we begin, to allow everyone to enter and get settled. Please leave the webinar running in the background and you will see the chat stream progress, then you will hear our audio when the webinar begins.
‘Managers who don’t know how to meet the engagement needs of their team become a barrier to employee, team and company performance’, suggests a recent Gallup poll.
The global poll found that disengaged employees outnumber engaged employees by almost 2:1 (24% vs. 13% respectively), so can we then presume that on a worldwide scale, more people find their working lives dissatisfying rather than delightful?
An engaged team is naturally the more preferable option, delivering better results across the board in terms of higher employee retention, customer satisfaction ratings and of course profitability to name but a few benefits.
Are managers to blame?
In a way. But it’s a tricky one.
We can’t levy all of the blame at the manager’s doorstep. Whilst it is undeniable that they have a huge amount of collective influence, we must also consider the impact of organisational culture and the infrastructure in place to support them to be able to effectively manage and lead their teams.
After all, if a manager is brought into a company that has little or no concern for their people, should we then be surprised if the manager adopts a similar style? This lack of concern can be seen in many ways such as ignoring suggestions, telling not asking or the mis-match between corporate values and behaviour demonstrated, particularly from senior leaders.
Let’s be clear: there is a big difference between a manager who actively chooses not to engage their team and one who is not supported to work in such a way. The former must always be performance managed, but we mustn’t paint all managers with the same brush.
‘Appropriately trained and aligned managers are vital to the execution of the company’s mission and to the development and engagement of employees.’
There are a huge number of factors that can impact employee engagement levels, but to see a significant increase a few of the top areas to focus on include:
- As mentioned, organisational culture, including strategy, mission, purpose and values must be aligned to provide a unified direction, and this must be driven from the top.
- People (not just managers) must feel empowered rather than micromanaged.
- People (particularly managers) must be invested in and supported, both on-the-job and in the long-term through management and leadership development and training.
Coming next week: Part two of our look at the importance of developing Emotional Intelligence as an interpersonal skill.
At Right Trax Training, we use personality profiling to support our own, often opposing styles…which can be ‘fun’!
Personality profiling is something that we feel passionate about. For us, we deliver much in the way of MBTI and Insights Discovery training and workshops. Tools like these can benefit the workplace and relationships immensely, if used in the ‘right‘ way.
Here’s an overview of how we differ:
|Conscious preference||Introverted Thinking||Extroverted Feeling|
|Myers-Briggs Type Indicator®||ISTJ||ENFP|
|MBTI Personality Types®|
|Insights Discovery® conscious colour order|
Perhaps the biggest benefit however, is using the information to show us where each other is stronger (yes: and weaker), so that we can bounce off each other – which works great whether we’re deep in the detail of a proposal or facilitating events at fast pace!
All too often, we hear that opposites clash, and that we will lock horns with anyone very different to us. Of course, that may be true sometimes, but truly understanding our own preferences allows us to adapt and connect much more effectively with those around us, so that we easily complement and synergise with those who are opposite to us.
|Tendency to…||Focus on detail and pragmatism||Focus on the intuitive and possibilities|
|Aim for perfection||Know when good is good enough|
|Might say…||“Have you proofread this?”||“I gave it a quick scan!”|
|“But how is it going to work?”||“We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.”|
|Key strength||Analytical and systematic||Interactive and inspirational approach|
|Key weakness||Impatient with others he sees as having lower standards||Can over-react to relatively small issues|
|When communicating, do…||Respect his values and principles||Be alive and entertaining|
|When communicating, do not…||Dismiss his thoughts or ideas as negative||Assume that her sunny disposition means that she agrees with everything you say|
|Can easily leverage…||Critical analysis||Generating quick ideas|
|Consciously focuses on turning up…||Energy for training delivery and facilitation||Attention to detail|
Get in touch to find out more about the MBTI and Insights Discovery training and workshops that we offer and how they can help your people and your business!
A simple Google search for ‘training providers uk’ delivers over 60 million results, so where on earth do you start?!
Of course, word of mouth, referral and customer testimonials are important, but you still need to make sure that the ethos and approach of the training consultancy that you choose will be the best fit for your business culture and development need.
At Right Trax Training, we pride ourselves on approaching development in a different way to most. We offer a learning and development consultancy service that matches if not exceeds the quality of other big players in our marketplace through our personal approach.
Taking the time to get to know you, your business and your challenges, we create tailored interventions that support your people but ultimately, grow your business and the bottom line.
Want to know more? We’d love to hear from you so get in touch to find out how we could be the training consultancy for you!
With openness being one of the top five drivers of trust1, why do so many organisations neglect to develop this essential quality in their leaders and managers? After all, it’s not rocket science…or is it?
Openness is considered to be a philosophy or theory that encompasses being accessible and receptive to ideas, opinions and knowledge, whilst being transparent and collaborative in management style and decision-making2. Doesn’t sound too difficult, does it? Yet so many employees feel that openness is not practiced, with issues in the workplace ranging from low confidence, lack of ability or understanding and even the misconception that being open gives the perception of being less authoritative.
However, employees become frustrated with this apparent lack of openness and are under no illusions when it comes to organisational challenges and issues; and management appearing closed simply serves to escalate the frustration. Without the transparency or collaboration required for openness, employees will replace these missing elements and fill in the gaps for themselves.
There’s just some magic in truth, honesty and openness.
With this in mind, what can you do to develop your openness?
1. Be visible and engaged
Don’t hide behind a hierarchical management structure or bland generalised emails. Get out there with your teams, let them see you and feel your presence and become more personally engaged in them as people. Learn about your people, move away from ‘safe’ banal chit chat and discover them as individuals rather than the tasks or role that they do.
2. Be accountable and committed
Never underestimate how important it is to take ownership of your messages and decisions. Employees may not always agree with you, however they will more often than not respect you for owning a message or action. It demonstrates commitment and transparency which helps employees to understand issues and challenges. Most importantly it is a fundamental part in helping people to manage and cope with change.
3. Be consistent
Build confidence and trust by ensuring your actions and behaviours are consistent. Employees waste too much time trying to gauge the mood of their manager or which way they will be behave, so take ownership and be consistent.
4. Listen and encourage feedback
Your people don’t just want you to hear them but to actually listen and take note of their opinions and feedback. It’s a full time job really listening and understanding exactly what is being said, especially if you consider the amount of change and uncertainty that may be taking place in the current climate. Your employee’s feedback will tell you so much more than any report or survey; after all, they are seeing the business from the front line and their observations can be critical to resolving issues early on or recognising when things are or aren’t working.
5. Express your opinion
Whilst it is great that you ask your employees for their feedback, don’t be afraid of giving yours as well. As mentioned earlier, they may not agree but by understanding your thinking process and the bigger picture they can start to appreciate situations a lot more. Be confident in your opinions but not overtly authoritative – remember you’re encouraging a participative style of leadership by asking for opinions and feedback of others so strike a healthy balance of assertiveness.
Trust is the underpinning value in creating effective working relationships and has a direct impact in increasing employee engagement and satisfaction. Therefore it is critical that leaders and managers are able to demonstrate trust to their employees, customers and shareholders alike. Hopefully we have shown that this isn’t rocket science, however that doesn’t mean it’s easy although still something that must be invested in.
There is more uncertainty within the workplace than ever before. Are your people equipped with the skills and knowledge to successfully take your organisation into the future?
Many organisations will be trying to anticipate the future which for many will mean reviewing budgets and expenses until the economic environment becomes more stable. All too often this will have a direct impact on training and development budgets and unfortunately many development events will be reduced or even stopped. This can leave employees feeling disengaged and even more uncertain of their future and just as importantly, may impact on their overall capability.
An investment in knowledge, pays the best interest
The focus must remain on investing in your people, however it may mean prioritising differently or looking at alternative solutions. Review the Learning and Development strategy to ensure that it is aligned to the business objectives and it includes a clearly defined plan on developing a talent pipeline that will deliver your organisational goals.
Remember that whilst strategies, plans and decisions are being made your employees are still working hard to achieve the goals and objectives of the business. Take this time to show commitment to your teams and support them during this time of change, whether through management training or perhaps a range of relevant interpersonal skills workshops. Provide development opportunities that will give them the knowledge and skills to not only withstand the new world but to be more resilient and able to embrace the potential changes that may lie ahead.
You don’t build a business, you build people and the people build the business
Before you strike a line through the training plan, stop and think of the long-term cost and ask the question: can we really afford not to invest in our people’s development?
At Right Trax Training, we can help to make your training an investment rather than a cost. Find out more about the management training and interpersonal skills workshops that we offer or get in touch to talk about how we can help.
Two things are certain in life: death and taxes. Another to add is constant change in the workplace, which has now become the new normal.
It’s fair to say that, in one way or another, we are constantly supporting our clients to help their businesses and their people through times of significant change.
Change come in many shapes and guises; whether it’s downsizing, finding new ways of working, shrinking budgetary demands or a desire for increased effectiveness. It seems that we only manage to bring ourselves over that sometimes illusive hill of the change curve before *SMACK* another comes to throw us off kilter.
Change isn’t going to stop, and we all have a personal responsibility for how we manage ourselves, support others and make any organisational change a success.
- Is your glass half full or half empty? If you fear or dislike change for whatever reasons, you may respond negatively to each and every change that comes along. This is unhealthy for both you and those around you (especially if you are a people manager with this outlook!).
- Learn to view each change with an open mind. It’s human nature for any change to make us ask the WIIFM question (“what’s in it for me?”), but rather than focus on the potential negatives, look for the opportunities that exist for you, your people and / or the organisation as a whole.
- Challenge, but do it constructively. There’s nothing more demotivating than the death-knell of the “We used to do it like that 15 years ago and it didn’t work then.” Sure, that may well be the case, but use this experience to suggest alternative approaches to refine the change rather than find reasons why it’s doomed to fail in the first place.
- Communicate, communicate, communicate! Even if you have nothing or very little to tell people – in reality, no news is rarely good news and if you do nothing, people will form their own conclusions based on the limited information they have.
- Use a variety of methods. Whether it’s face-to-face, briefings, bulletins, newsletters, Intranet, team meetings…put the information out there in a number of ways so that people can find and digest what they need when they want and need to.
- Honesty is the best policy. Even if you are unable to discuss certain things, say as much rather than avoiding people’s concerns and worries. Aim to win people over to make them champions of your change and allies, not foes.
Making Organisational Change a Success
- Last but never least, follow a structure to plan, implement and evaluate the change. There are a myriad of options and whatever structure you choose should be tailored and regularly reviewed to ensure there is room for flexibility.
Get in touch to find out how our approach to learning and development can help you to successfully manage change in your organisation.
We meet so many people who (thankfully) leave our Insights Discovery training events having had a fantastic learning experience, yet they then get sucked back into the manic day-to-day of working life.
As we work with many of you to deliver Insights Discovery® training, we think / feel (geddit?!) that this is a great place to give a few pointers on how to keep Insights alive for you and your team.
The following links contain simple instructions to a few activities you can carry out with your team to make sure that learning from the Insights Discovery® profile continues long after the learning event.
A great follow-up activity to any Insights Discovery® event. Ever wondered how you could better tune in for even more effective communication with your team? Or how to tell those around you exactly how you’d prefer them to communicate with you? Well now’s your chance to find out! Get in touch if you’d like us to send you the PowerPoint version of the template so that you can make your own communication matrix for the team.
Lots of teams ask us “How can we keep the focus on Insights once the initial buzz dies down?”…and the answer is often to simply keep talking about it! In this activity, you’ll find 10 talking points to use during your team time; either all at once (although that might take a while), or you could pick out a couple to put on each agenda across a few team meetings.
This is one of our ultimate favourites, because it gives each and every team the opportunity to do something that they seldom do: offer each other positive and constructive feedback! Find out what your team sees as your biggest value…chances are, you’ll be surprised.
Dig in and have fun keeping Insights alive! You can keep up-to-date on new activities and materials that are added from our resources page.
Get in touch if you would like to discuss the activities in more detail, or if you would like some ideas on other ways to keep Insights alive. Find out more about the Insights Discovery training that we offer.