Blog posts tagged in Leadership

Simple truths for positive business people

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I've been listening to Gretchen Rubin for the last few months and I adore the way she blends hard science with personal commentary. Within her 'Happiness Project' Gretchin identifies her '12 Commandments' and with clarity explains how these simple rules help guide her life and business. I thought it was a brilliant idea, so here are the simple truths I've found about positive business people.
 

1. The days are long but the years are short - Many people in business fall into the trap of feeling overwhelmed and focus in on the daily tasks at hand. The trouble is, the years pass by regardless of where you focus, so taking time to make a master plan helps you to see the bigger picture and work towards it. 

2. Lean in when it gets uncomfortable - There are not many business people I know of who have had an easy path to success, in fact, I can't think of one. Those who are truly successful know that when things get difficult the fastest way forward is to lean in, to work harder and to find a way through. The people who avoid confrontations, failure and the mess that business can be, generally don't stick around for long. 
 
3. Always leave it better than you found it - Regardless of what context your thinking of, the same rule applies both in business and life. When you walk into a meeting make sure the people leave feeling valued and inspired, when you walk into a messy office, do what you can to tidy, improve or organise it. If you live this truth you'll go to bed every night knowing you've made the world a little better. 
 
4. Stop deliberating - Either make a decision, make a plan or get some advice. Positive business people know that time spent deliberating is time wasted (it also has a negative effect on both our willpower and self efficacy). I'm not talking about thinking through, I'm talking about worrying over things. Thinking and planning is brilliant, but you know when you get to the point where you should have made a decision. Positive people push through that, others... well they stay stuck in worry and inaction. I heard a beautiful sentiment on clutter recently "Clutter is simply decisions postponed."  
 
5. Other people matter - In fact, other people are the only way you'll every create the business you want. Give out gold stars regularly, praise and acknowledge your suppliers, staff and clients and take every opportunity you get to lift and elevate the people around you. When you start living this truth you'll draw in the most amazing people into your life and things will start clicking into place. 
 
6. Never put off till tomorrow what can be done today - My Dad instilled this value in me and yes it certainly keeps me busy, but I also feel like I make massive progress most days. If I walk past something that needs to be done rather than deliberating, I get it done (or add it to a system to get done.) Now, I know this is contentious, and for some of you (with over flowing in-boxes and a line at your office door) I appreciate this isn't achievable. But, what you will find is that the more you achieve today, the easier tomorrow is. Yes, it's a double edged sword, and the more you achieve, the more is expected of you. But fundamentally, once you tick it off your list, you feel great, your confidence grows and you get to move forward.  
 
7. Consciously create fun - Fun at work? Yes, positive people find ways to create fun and moments of engagement and joy. Why? - Oh, I could bang on about the science for ages, but essentially people who have fun and are playful at work create positive moments, that puts your brain into a super productive state, opens you up to new opportunities and helps you engage and connect with those around you. It's those times that your able to do your best work and find the flow. 
 
8. Simplify - Mostly, we overcomplicate things in business. I constantly ask myself, how can I make this more simple? It minimises distractions, reduces people involved, decreases costs and generally makes everything more efficient. The challenge is wading through the complexities to find the simplicity underneath. 
 
9. There is only this moment, and it too shall pass - This was my mantra when my kids were little and I've found it works in every walk of life to keep me grounded in the present moment. When business is going well, I try to remember, it won't always be this easy, and when business is at it's most challenging, I try to remember, it won't always be this tough. Either way, when I keep that perspectice it makes being in the moment easier.
 
10. Follow your passion - It's an old cliche but when you follow your heart and the things that light you up, the path forward becomes clearer and often things seem to magically click into place. (Not very businessey of me, but you know it's true.) When you're passionate about your business and the difference it makes in the world, the work pales into insignificance when compared to the impact you're creating.
 
11. Develop a growth mindset - Positive people have a minset that believes learning is more important than achieving and growing is more  important than winning. Look around your business and the people who are life long learners always stand out. They are sparking interesting conversations, open to new ideas and the first to take a chance in business. They know that failure is the birthplace of crativity and innovation. 
 
12. Invest in yourself - What you know will be the foundation of your business. Investing in your education and personal and professional development will always pay off and positive people are prepared to back themselves and invest in becoming better in their chosen field.  
 
So, there happens to be 12.... but I'm positive you can think of a few more that apply to your business. Hopefully it's sparked some ideas and inspired you to adopt a more positive way of doing business. If you have any thoughts, questions or additions to the list I'd love to hear them. 
 
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Nothing would give me more pleasure than telling you that after 11 years as a coach, and studying the ins and outs of happiness, that there’s a golden light at the end of the tunnel where you live happily ever after and life is a long string of joy, love bubbles and blissful moments. However, I don’t deal in bull... dust, I deal in positivity, and quite frankly, there is no pot of gold to find. (Sorry.)

What I have discovered, is that regardless of how positive you are, life still throws you challenges. No matter how mindful, engaged or compassionate you are, bad stuff still happens and weather you’re generally more optimistic or more pessimistic, when disaster strikes, it still sucks! The pain feels the same regardless of your disposition, it’s what comes next that separates us. I think most people believe that the optimist is like an endangered species on a protected list that is simply immune to disaster or negativity, not so my friends. The optimist is the guy working overtime to make sure that when disaster strikes it doesn’t’ take him (or those around him,) down with it.

Laura at School 2017OK, So you may not have heard about Positive Education YET, but believe me, it's coming to a school near you! Positive Education is an offshoot of Positive Psychology (the study of well-being) and quite simply is the application of Positive Psychology into an educational setting. It's well researched and there's now an amazing amount of information and studies about how it can transform schools. Positively of course!

Yes, most schools do have a well-being program or two, some even have a PBL strategy (Positive Behavior for Learning), but where Positive Education is different is it places the well-being of both students and teachers at the centre of the school system rather than on the periphery. It's a critical shift that makes all the difference. "The fundamental goal of positive education is to promote flourishing or positive mental health within the school community." Norrish, 2013. 

Positive Leadership - A snapshot!

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Sean Cooper Laura CooperMy husband was recently accused of bullying…. By our six-year-old daughter. Laura came home from school telling me how she learned all about bullying at School. Later that evening when my husband, very respectfully I might add, asked her to put her pyjamas on for bed, she turned around, put her hands on her hips (with all the theatrics of an indignant six-year-old) and said “Stop bullying me Dad!” You can see by the picture how strained their relationship is. LOL. 

Generally, in our society, we focus on the problem not the solution. Teaching children about bullying gives them a vocabulary that expands their thoughts in that direction. Every three hours, one person in Australia chooses to end their own life, that’s approximately 8 people a day and is greater than our National road toll, tragically, in 2015 our suicide rate was close to three times that of our road toll.

The Business of Happiness

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happy at workIn today’s fast paced society it’s hard enough to be happy when we’re on holidays, let along being happy at work! There are so many demands on our time and more often than not we feel overwhelmed and stressed just thinking about trying to reach that elusive goal of happiness.

The good news is that happiness is no longer a pipe dream, it’s no longer a self help fad and with the field of positive psychology exploring new ways to help individuals and organisations to flourish every day, happiness is now more available than ever... and has the science to back it up.

The tripple bottom line

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yvon chouinardMost businesses are primarily driven by their bottom line; That is, how much profit was realised and what return will the shareholders receive. Business is changing, and to create a sustainable business model I believe that the bottom line has changed most of all.

The triple bottom line replaces traditional fiscal profitability and embraces three positive outcomes that all businesses should be aiming for; People, Planet and Profit. When a business shifts focus to embrace the triple bottom line the integrity of the organisation shifts up a gear and it becomes valuable in its own right.

South West CultureWhat lies at the root of Southwest Airlines Culture is the strong focus on relationships. The Southwest framework of positive relationships is; Shared goals, Shared knowledge and Mutual respect. This is named ‘relational coordination’ and is found to enhance both quality and efficiency in equal measures. In a hospital studied, relational coordination created: 31% reduction hospital stays, 22% higher patient quality of care, improved clinical outcomes.

Southwest has 10 practices for building high performance relationships:

Date: Thursday, 16 July – Shellharbour
Topic: Increase Profits through a Positive Culture
Presenter: Jodie Cooper

Jodie Cooper specialises in developing positive mindsets and in this workshop will focus on how positivity contributes to building happier and more productive workplaces.
 
Jodie will demonstrate why positivity is essential to both creating a successful and productive team and to assist people to reach their full potential. When people are fully engaged and using their strengths at work, motivation and consistency become part of the team dynamic!
 
By drawing on research from the field of positive psychology, Jodie will also identify the key elements of a positive work culture and show you how to bring these elements together within your team.
 
By implementing some simple changes, you’ll foster a more positive attitude among those you work with and also see a positive impact on the bottom line.
 
At the end of the workshop you'll have the tools to:

  • Regain personal positivity, productivity and focus
  • Recognise and tap into your strengths
  • Develop a plan to help yourself and your team thrive at work
  • Get clarity on what’s really important in your business and take action on it 

 

Kiki unhingedTamara Campbell is a wonderful local woman who performs internationally as a physical comedian, with her character Kiki Bittovabitsch. Recently, Tamara presented this speach at a local arts festival and when she sent it to me I really wanted to share it with you. .....

I feel that life has a small frivolity window for adults, a time when you can, if you really want to, play again, risk, like a 20 something with the knowledge of an adult, a real adult - and I believe that as an artist this time can be extraordinary.

Tips from women in leadership

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cleopatra elizabeth taylor

There is nothing new about Women in leadership roles, what is new is that we're banding together to support each other like never before! I had the privilege to go to a conference on Women in Leadership recently and I wanted to share a few of the pearls of wisdom I took away from the four exceptional speakers. 

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