Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy 2013!

Of all sound of all bells, the most solemn and touching is the peal which rings out the Old Year.
~ Charles Lamb

Monday, December 24, 2012

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Why The World Won't End In 2012

It's official: the world won't be ending on 21 December 2012. Not only because the Maya didn't bother to add a leap year to compensate for the fact that a year is actually 365.2422 days, thus making their date 60 days out of kilter with our calendar (i.e., their Doomsday was meant to happen back in our October). No, there's another more compelling reason: Creative Learning's new group profiles.

Group profiles are useful for corporates, high-risk professions,  team leaders, managers, church ministers, teachers, even home-schooling parents. They show the synergies of the group and how best to communicate your message to the members of the group. In conjunction with the LSA Manual or the WSA Manual, a group profile is a powerful tool that allows lesson planning, training planning and team work planning.

How do you get them? Easy. Have a look here. The Maya liked them so much, they've cancelled the end of the world....

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Working Styles Explain Diversity

Your manager asks you to conduct a survey and you suggest a colourful questionnaire, professional but light-hearted in tone. The boss, however, insists on a sombre set of formal questions. You try to comply, but despite all your efforts, the survey doesn’t seem to take shape. You feel frustrated and de-motivated. You may even feel worthless and not suited to your job.

What you’ve just experienced, is a typical example of mismatched working styles: your working style was not compatible with your boss’s. Barbara Prashnig, a leading world expert in the field, defines working style as the way in which people concentrate, work, make decisions and solve problems.

“Some people are analytical in their thinking and perform tasks step-by-step,” she explains. “Those are the ones who like formal questionnaires. Others prefer to approach problems holistically, with colour, humour and thinking outside the box.”

And that's just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to human diversity in the workplace. Some people fidget and pace the room when pondering the next sentence in the report. Others need to chew or nibble when working on a project, and if a snack is not around, they will bite on pencils, fingernails, hair or ties.

And then there’s the timing. The proverbial owls and the dawn-driven larks. Somebody who leaps out of bed at five in the morning, completely refreshed and ready to tackle the day’s workload, will never understand a colleague who arrives in the office at nine, yawning and demanding coffee.

What about noise levels? If Paul from accounts finds it impossible to work in a room full of people, it doesn’t mean he’s anti-social. It may be that his working style is stifled unless he has absolute silence. The secretary, on the other hand, might need the reassuring buzz of traffic outside.

Do you prefer working in a darkish room or one filled with bright electric light? Do you think better when your bare arms tingle from the cold, or when you’re wrapped up in a big woolen jersey? Is your desk tidy and your paperwork in neatly labelled files; or do you use your in-tray to store your lunch and the floor around your desk for piles of work ‘to be done’?

So much to find out. Start today.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Goal-Oriented or Journey-Oriented?

Picture this: you're baking a birthday cake. Your goal is to get it done as soon as possible, but your children are looking forward to the job itself, not only to the end result. Kids are super-good at enjoying the process: making a cake is every bit as fun as eating it. If you try to speed them up, you’ll end up stressed and with unhappy children.

Is your learning style goal-oriented or journey-oriented? Find out how you tick.

So, what can we learn from this? The Journey can also be The Goal in itself. The goal of the Sunday walk, for example, is to have fun, not to get to the other end of the beach - so it's ok to stop and build a sand castle.

Of course, sometimes you have to do some basic goal setting in life. Here's how:
1. Set your goals with a positive attitude.

2. Be specific. “I want to get better at Maths” is vague and difficult to measure, while “By the end of the term, I want to do addition in my head, up to a hundred” is a clear, achievable goal.

3. Be realistic. “I want to do addition in my head, up to a million” may not be the right goal.

4. Write down your goals.

5. For bigger goals, write a step-by-step plan how to achieve them.

6. Stay excited and passionate about your goals.