THURSDAY THOUGHTS! – Creative Places, Spaces & Bases

I scheduled this post last week, knowing I’d be away for the next 2 weeks feeding my creative hunger – but it made me think.  Everyone has places, spaces or bases where they do their most creative thinking.  Do you have your best ideas whilst ironing, or whilst you are soaking in the bath maybe, or when you are otherwise inspired by your surroundings in some way or doing something you know makes you look at things from a different perspective?

So this week’s question attempts to find out where those places, spaces or bases are, for you:

“Where do you have your best ideas, and why?”

This week I am mostly in Havana!  I know, I’m very lucky and privileged to be able to say that!  This will definitely be creative and inspirational for me as I’ll be wandering around with my beloved camera very firmly in my hands – and I always do my best free thinking when I’m in a photography scenario when I can bring filters and lenses to process 🙂

I’m very much looking forward to finding out about your places and why – yes I can (and will) check what’s coming through from afar – but forgive me for having a daiquiri in my hand when I do so !!!

THURSDAY THOUGHTS! – What’s your best time management tip?

Time management is the ever-present challenge in our lives today.  Too much to do, too little time to do it.  So at some stage, we’ve all spotted and used time management tips which work for us.  We are all, in one way or another, a great resource for finding out new tips!

So this week’s question asks just that:

“What is your best time management tip?”

Here’s mine for starters 🙂

THURSDAY THOUGHTS! – influential films

I’ve been at home more than usual of late – mainly due to a bout of illness so I’ve not been in the thick of the workplace momentum and general frantic-ness for a little while.  It’s been perfect for reflection and a process of spotting lessons embedded in unusual places.  Which has prompted this week’s area for us to ponder further …..

“Which movie would you like to give to your boss (or significant other) that has powerful messages they would do well to see, hear and learn from?”

This is an interesting area.  In the workplace, I’ve previously undertaken management training which has relied heavily on the medium of the classics, Shakespear’s Julius Caesar and Henry V spring to mind with huge messages on how to influence effectively.  It’s not to everyone’s taste, but I loved it and learnt from it and have implemented what I learnt to good effect.

So this week, something more accessible to everyone, films.  Which ones have contained stories and lessons which have resonated with you personally, and ……

“Which ones would you like to share with your boss and why?”

Share your insights, for bosses or just people who have significant influence in your life, via comments please.  If you know of anyone with a similar story to tell, encourage them to contribute too if you would?


Mentorship & Me – Part 3 – Alison Crawford – And Now Lets Make It Happen …

Last week I had a telephone mentor session, revisiting what I’d put in my 5 year plan.  Very clear on what I want for the next 12 months, a bit sketchy on the five year part.  So I outline my plans to tackle the 12 month part of my plan, basically things to build my reputation and get recognised for getting things done. My mentor agrees that this plan is indeed a good way to proceed.  Sometimes it’s good to hear that!  Best made plans don’t always work out, and I feel like I’ve been doing a lot of legwork these past few years, still waiting on the payoff.  Knowing that I’m doing the right stuff tells me that it will work out…. eventually.
So today I get one of my usual job search email notifications.  It’s 99% guff, but surely enough, I see a job I want!  More importantly, I just don’t have what they want….. yet.  I have the ‘analysis’ skills, but not the business stuff. So I see a minor breakthrough ahead.  I might not yet see light at the end of the tunnel, but at least I know that it leads somewhere I want to be.

THURSDAY THOUGHTS! – Does behaviour matter?

I’ve spent some time lately analysing workplace behaviour and how it impacts on people.  Part of this process discussed:

“If behaviour is not observed, does it matter?”

Interesting question don’t you think?  It reminded me of the “scream in a vacuum” concept.

Personally, I think behaviour, observed or not DOES matter.  Being a great believer in self reflection, I strongly believe that we can observe ourselves and observation does not need to be by another party.  Often I have caught myself doing something and its instantly reminded me of my mother, or someone I admired or occasionally, someone I didn’t!  It’s prompted me to reflect why I did something, or said something in that way and a mental note has been added to the bank to do something differently (or not) in the future.

Language plays a great part in this.  How often have you heard:

  • I need that by close of play
  • On balance I’ve made this decision and you may not like it
  • I’ve had a great idea on how to do that differently, hear me out
  • How do you feel about the way that went?

Do you react or behave differently depending upon the way something is said rather than the actual words?  Does the tone affect you?  How do different styles of questions affect you?  Do you brace yourself with one particular person and not others?

All these things depict behaviour, so this week, I’m interested in:

“Does behaviour matter?”

Thanks for visiting this week’s topic.  Feel free to comment (every one gets answered) but please, do always want to return often!

Belbin Team Roles

Aresko is now Belbin accredited.  So if you want to make your team more successful (and who doesn’t?) give us a call to find out more (07932 641313).

Its not about happy teams, its about productive, successful teams – so what is your team missing?

  • Are you missing a Shaper to keep everyone on task?
  • Or perhaps you are missing the creativity of a Plant to bring new ideas and angles into the way the team is approaching problems?

Whatever it is, we can help identify the missing link for you, and also help you go about finding it, in the right way.

So what are you waiting for?


Do you have the right mix to be a highly successful team?

THURSDAY THOUGHTS! – How do you deal with pressure?

With thanks to Alison Crawford for the Thursday Thoughts! question idea this week.

The BBC launched a new international psychological on-line test to give you some insight as to how you react under pressure or in stressful situations, and how you might improve that performance.  It takes about 20 minutes to complete.  It’s launch is linked to improving competitive performance (Olympic year) but its equally useful to analysing how you perform at interview or any other relatively stressful workplace situation.  Its a fascinating test so our question this week is:

“Should people accept that pressure is a fact of life?”

Do you recognise when situations move from being pressurised to being stressful?  Can you identify any symptoms or triggers in your own behaviour or mood which would indicate this?
I took the test on Tuesday, and my results are as follows:
– happiness is my key emotion for high performance
– medium consistency (but with improvements on Tuesday)
– medium improvement (you take the cube test 4 times – I got better each time I did it)
– high efficiency
– I have low suppression to hearing negativity (good listener/grounded/dont ignore or filter out others!) and high reappraisal skills for personally dealing with that negativity or helping others to deal with it (thats why I’m an OD person!)
– the psychological technique that I practiced during the test gave me only moderate improvement, but it suggests I need to practice more  techniques  if I want to improve my performance more.  I will indeed do a bit of this to see what changes.
If you also want to do the test (its quite painless!), the link is here:
Feel free to take it (you can do it more than once if you wish) and see what your indicators are but please share your thoughts or ideas by way of comments to this piece too 😉
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