Difficult situations? Try these DOs & DON’Ts

‘How to handle difficult situations’ is one of the most popular topics on Zoomly’s menu of workshops. Based on the insights gained on both developing / delivering it and the contributions of hundreds of participants, here are some DOs and DON’Ts to help you when a situation gets difficult. DON’Ts Go for a ‘win’ at… Read more

Are you asking the right questions?

  When you’re working and collaborating with clients, suppliers, colleagues, team members, what questions do you hear? What questions do you ask? Most of us don’t give it too much thought – it’s just a conversation, right? Well, yes and no. Yes, I hope you have two-way conversations with these people. No, asking the right… Read more

Don’t know who can you ask for feedback? Here’s an A-Z

A question that often comes up when I facilitate Zoomly’s ‘How to give effective feedback’ workshop is who to ask for it. After all, feedback isn’t just about commenting on others’ performance; we need feedback on ours too. Some people seem to think there’s no-one to ask or feel a bit awkward about asking. I’m… Read more

Help! My boss is a procrastinator

Participants in Zoomly’s workshops often hang back to ask me questions at the end, and I feel privileged to be asked.  The ‘How to manage upwards’ session is typical. I’ll always do what I can to help. Yet I’m acutely aware that I don’t work there and I’m not their manager. But I try to… Read more

Vital communication skill – listening

Very often when people think of working on their communication skills, they’ll say they need to boost their speaking / presentation / influencing skills. Fair enough – those are indeed applications of communication skills – yet I have a sneaking suspicion that the focus is on transmitting more than receiving. I think the most under-rated… Read more

Office party howlers and how to avoid them

  December is here…and that means Christmas parties. Not just mince pies and mulled wine – but also colleagues, including your boss. I’ve previously posted festive season tips*; thanks to the readers who asked me to get going with this earlier in December. “I read your post the morning after I’d done EVERYTHING you shouldn’t… Read more

Mental Health at work: how you can help

October 10 sees World Mental Health Day, which aims to boost awareness of mental health, specifically advocacy against stigma through education and awareness-raising. This year the focus of WMHDAY is on ‘Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World’ – you can read the full report here. WMHDAY defines ‘positive mental health’ as the ‘ability… Read more

Book review: The A**hole Survival Guide by Robert I. Sutton

Professor Robert I. Sutton is now known to many as ‘the Asshole Guy’, having given us ‘The No Asshole Rule’, followed by ‘The Asshole Survival Guide’. So if the A-word is too strong for you, look away – and miss out. I like a book that doesn’t mince its words. It’s also good if there’s… Read more

20 questions to help you negotiate (and one to avoid)

In Zoomly’s ‘How to negotiate’ workshop (co-created with ‘How to pay less for more’ author Marc Lockley), after participants have practised negotiating with each other, we debrief and ask for insights gained. One of the big ‘aha’ moments people report is the power of asking the right questions – and the perils of asking the… Read more