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    Entries in leadership (89)

    Monday
    Jun032019

    The thing about experience is: it’s different for everyone. 

    The thing about experience is: it’s different for everyone. Even the same event is experienced differently by people. How do you make the most of experience in an organisation or team?  I’ve shared some advice and suggestions like:

    πŸ—Ί Use experience maps

    πŸ•˜ Schedule an experience share meeting

    πŸ“Œ Put experience on the agenda of regular meetings

    ❣️ Protect people while they’re presenting their experience maps.

    And it’s helpful to remember the power of ideas. Any two ideas can be connected, creating an incredible third idea. Their experience plus your experience, plus the situation you’re all in now, it can be combined to solve what you're working on.

    Bringing the experience of your team together, to be used together, tapped together and understood together is better than information sitting in a spreadsheet cell or filed away in an enterprise people system. Make experience something of the ’now’, talked about and acknowledged in the now, not just of the past - when it happened - and you’ll bring your team into a strong position able to cope with the future.

    >>What experience do you have that you just know will set you up for the future?

    Monday
    Jun032019

    Put experience on the agenda

    I’ve been writing about the untapped expertise that lives in your team and business. It’s vital you uncover it because there’s much to be gained.

    Be sure to allow some time for it, like at your next meeting. Just put some time on the agenda. You could hold an entire meeting to go through everyone’s expertise, but there are other ways too.

    A couple of people could present at each meeting, sharing their ‘experience maps’ as I explained a couple of days ago.

    Set the time aside, and then provide some protection of the people while they’re sharing their experience. Why protection? I know some organisations where this meeting would be the most wonderfully respectful experience. I also know other teams and organisations where some people will be rude, impatient, checking their device, agitated that things are moving too 'slowly'. So you may need to chill a little. Allow time, knowing that what you’ll uncover will build connections and trust and help you know more about the people you lead. Let people share their experience - then watch what happens in the team.

    >> How might sharing your experience in a team you're part of help enhance and change culture? 

    Monday
    Jun032019

    Hidden experience is a huge cause of productivity loss

    This week I’m writing about experience people have that you might be ignoring. A barrier to hearing people’s experience is often the leader’s resistance to it.

    - Why wouldn’t you want to know about expertise that exists in your team?

    - Why wouldn't you want to know this information?

    - Why wouldn’t you want to hear it?

    ‘Why don’t people listen?’ author, Hugh Mackay says we don’t want to listen due to the fear that what we hear will change us.

    Australian Olympic athlete Cathy Freeman says 'when I'm in a bad mood, I don't listen.'

    Oscar Trimboli, author of ‘Deep Listening' says by not listening ’the same issues keep occurring therefore people are blamed.’ Excuses like: No time Too much to do Too hard Too many people to get through ...are excuses with simple answers.

    It takes effort and empathy to pay attention to people, especially when they're sharing their story, and it’s not about you. New ways of working require us to change what we do so we can make progress through these tricky times. To listen and learn from others is a key part of this. And for many people this indeed is a 'new way of working'. 

    Monday
    Jun032019

    The tragedy of untapped expertise

    The tragedy of untapped expertise.

    How often in a meeting, you know what’s happening, you have experience to add, you’ve seen the thing, done the thing the group is thinking about or working on ... yet your experience is:

    * Overlooked

    * Ignored

    * Forgotten

    * Dismissed

    * Excluded

    * Bypassed

    * Invisible?

     

    A life hack calendar on my wall has the quote: "Learning from mistakes is wise, learning from the mistakes of others is quicker and easier”. Your experience is awesome and valuable. Do not ever, ever doubt that.

    What’s missing is a way to gather that experience, synthesise it, make sense of it and bring it into the team and organisation. Simply telling an ‘I’ve done this’ or a ‘When I worked at x’ story doesn't seem to cover the breadth and depth of our experiences.

    So leaders: you must elicit the expertise in the room, team or group. No matter who, or what or from where. It’s one of the biggest no-brainers in the workplace today too often overlooked. For planning, strategy, problem solving, you don’t need to always start at the zero point. You’ve got incredible expertise on tap, and you’re simply - and seriously - not tapping it. Get tapping.

    How does it feel to not be 'seen' or heard?

    Monday
    Jun032019

    There is power in 'collective sense'

    There is power in 'collective sense'. This week I'm posting on sensemaking, the skill in understanding the deeper meaning of something.

    How do you do it? Write some stuff down and write it in a layout that looks more like a map rather than a list. When you do this in a meeting and other people can see that map, you start to do ‘collective sensemaking’. Making sense of things together.

    Collective sense is in contrast to lone voices and egos who dominate meetings, propose solutions prematurely, or shut people down. It’s in contrast to the loud speakers, the interrupters and the repeaters. Collective sensemaking makes better leaders, and it's a skill today's leaders need to sharpen up on.

    I’ll leave you with these four templates from my book ‘Making Sense: A Handbook for the Future of Work’:

    1. a simple line or continuum

    2. a set of stairs (have you ever presented information about 'stepping up or improving'; this is an ideal shape and template)

    3. a path or road with signs (journey, anyone?)

    4. network diagram (from earlier this week). Give a like if you've learned something this week about sensemaking.

    πŸ€” What are you trying to make sense of at work?