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Workplace
Too Much Talk. Too Little Action

Too much talk at work kills productivity. This is one of the findings from a recent study at Currys, the UK retailer, where the main distraction to productivity seen by over a fifth of workers (23%) was talkative colleagues. In his excellent new book Supercommunicators, Charles Duhigg identifies three types of productive conversations. Here’s how they can become productive in a work context

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Culture Change
Form a Habit

Recently I explored the differences between IQ and EQ and suggested that EQ matters more than IQ for so many areas of life. I also revealed that Emotional Intelligence skills aren’t simply innate. In fact, with the correct stimulus and practice, any of us can improve our so-called ‘soft skills’. I happen to know this from personal exposure to Mygrow - a proven EQ development platform pioneered in South Africa a decade ago.

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Workplace
IQ or EQ?

What’s more important for success – IQ or EQ? Do you need one or both; and what’s the right mix? There’s no doubt that leaders, managers and employees are all being judged by a new yardstick. Not just by how smart we are, our training qualifications or years of experience. Increasingly it’s about how well we handle ourselves and other people. Until quite recently people used to think intelligence was just about IQ.

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Culture Change
Pre-Mortem

Does it sometimes feel that your business is fuelled more by optimism than reality? Do your colleagues tell you that customers are happy or (as in the case of a business I once encountered) that ‘no one’s complained yet’? Without putting a damper on things, there’s a very effective exercise you can run to perform a reality check on a big customer or a strategic project. We called it ‘Why did we lose the client?

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Workplace
Which Way?

Modern businesses invest time and expertise in shaping future strategies. Many go on to invest effort in communicating the chosen direction to employees. But often, when you talk to an individual staff member, team or department, you find they’re unaware of the strategy and clueless as to how they can help the organisation achieve it. People turn up to do their daily work but don’t much care about the broader outcome.

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Culture Change
Quick Thinking

In work and life, we prize the ability to think quickly. We use the complimentary term ‘agile’ to describe someone who can handle a tough Q&A session. Or ‘sharp’ for an entrepreneur who spots and seizes a business opportunity before anyone else. But, in ascribing quick thinking to intellect, we are generally mistaken. When we make decisions, our brains use two systems. Let’s call them fast and slow.

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