Building Team ‘Awesome’ – Where Are Your Strengths?

Focusing on building the right team to get the job done often makes us forget one thing … ‘change’ happens!

Focusing on building an ‘awesome’ team to deliver solutions to solve problems embraces the most important thing to remember … ‘change’ happens!


Introducing Team ‘Awesome’

  • Team ‘awesome’ is agile enough to be able to be responsive and proactive to change.
  • Team ‘awesome’ is able to recognise and resolve problems by making smart and informed decisions.
  • Team ‘awesome’ delivers relevant and real solutions for customers rather than delivering products and services to customers

How to Start to Build Team ‘Awesome’

Focusing on the behaviours you see, and the problems they present, instead of focusing on what strengths team members may have that are unseen, underutilized or untapped is where the secret to building and ‘awesome’ team lies.

Do you recognize any of these behaviours in your team?

The Procrastinator

Do you have team members who are indecisive and never seem to finish what they start?

  • Are these team members lacking confidence in the tasks they are expected to complete? If so, ask them why they feel this way and how you can help them to believe in themselves, particularly if the expectations in their role have changed.
  • Are these team members expected to complete tasks that they are under-skilled for?  Have you assessed your employee’s capacity and capability before having an expectation of them? If not, they may procrastinate to avoid being seen as incompetent.
  • Are these team members lost in the detail and cannot concentrate long enough to tick all the boxes to get the job done?  Find out if this person needs lots of information to commit or decide, and if so, how can you support this need?
  • Have you spent enough time explaining what you expect from these team members and the timeline you want them to complete tasks within?

The Antagonist

Do you have team members who create havoc and are sometimes a thorn in the side of other members of your team?

  • When this team member behaves this way are they aware of the impact on other team members?  Determine if this is a subconscious behaviour or one that is deliberate, and if so why?
  • Have these team members always behaved this way or has something changed that made their behaviour change, and if so why?
  • Are your antagonist team members bored and creating situations where they are the hero to challenge themselves?  How can you challenge them to refocus their attention?
  • What is the reward that these team members get by behaving this way?  How else can you reward them for other behaviours that are more appropriate, and in ways that will deliver higher productivity and is conducive to a healthy work culture?
  • Are other team members encouraging these behaviours by submitting or even enabling these team members?  Is being seen as having influence and authority the driver for these team members?

The People Pleaser

Nothing is too hard for these team members.  Give them any task and they will do their absolute best to see it through.

  • Are the team members that you identify as people pleasers capable of the tasks they attempt? How can you make these people feel that their contribution is valued while ensuring they are performing the tasks fit with their skill set and experience?
  • What are these team members looking for in your workplace?  Approval, a sense of belonging, popularity, or other drivers compel people pleasers to behave the way they do.  Identifying what the motivation is for the individual is key to ensuring that the potential of that employee is not lost in the effort and whether their behaviour may be more for personal gain than business productivity.
  • People pleasers often behave the way they do through fear and insecurity in the possibility of losing their role. By pleasing others they may feel that they will be liked and needed by the business, protecting them from their role being compromised.
  • If you channelled the energy that people pleasers spend on pleasing, into tasks that enable them to work to their strengths and give them a sense an opportunity to build a reputation on what they accomplish rather than what they do and say, what difference would that make to your business?

The ‘Accidental’ Leader

Have you got team members who have become accidental leaders? The role they are engaged in is not a leadership role but due to the team dynamics, they have had to stand up and take the lead, or maybe they were appointed into a leadership role but it is not their strength?

  • How can you identify who you natural leaders are, and when you do, how can you create an environment where they can lead, creating a more efficient and effective workplace?
  • Role misalignment can see accidental leaders thrust into an environment with an expectation that they are not engaged to perform.  How do you recognize natural leaders and appointed leaders who are misaligned?  When you do, how do you approach the dynamic of the workplace to take advantage of these leaders skills? Consider that working with these leaders strengths may alter or enhance culture with increased productivity and profitability.

The Quiet Achiever

The quiet achiever comes in, puts their head down and gets on with the task at hand.  Often this silent force pushes through workloads that others avoid, without complaint.

  • Is your visibility of the quiet achiever low?  Are you aware of what they have to offer, and if you are not what is your business missing out on?
  • Are your quiet achievers working to their capacity or just pushing through a workload?  Think about how you can start to introduce incentivization for these people to encourage them to challenge themselves and how you will do this.
  • Do your quiet achievers pick up the slack for other team members who may be taking advantage of their goodwill?  If you change how you measure the performance of your team and focus on their strengths to introduce key performance indicators, will this identify gaps in performance and open up opportunities?

The Whinger

Have you got team members who are never satisfied, never happy and always complaining no matter what you do for them?

  • People often whinge because whining about something is often easier than working to fix problems.  You need to discover why this behaviour keeps occurring to be able to establish a new purpose for these employees and to give them a reason why they would want to change their behaviour.
  • Is there a real reason for the whining that is being caused by the work environment that can be addressed rather than being dismissed?
  • Are their triggers that set off the whining, and if so what are that triggers, and what chain of reactions do these triggers put into motion?  Often taking the time to understand why people believe they need to behave a certain way is a great investment in discovering what motivates and what demotivates individuals and your team.

The Clock Watcher

The clock watcher’s timesheets are regimented and this is reflected in when they arrive at work and when they leave on time every day.  The clock watchers in your team may also be the ones who come in on time and then proceed to make their breakfast or socialize, procrastinating before they start work.

  • Why is your clock watcher disengaged? If they are bored and unhappy is it because their role does not challenge them, or are they only there to collect the weekly pay?
  • Clock watching is not only negative for the business but also impacts on the employee and the team collectively, with productivity suffering and everyone is affected. How can you help these employees to re-engage and take ownership of what they contribute?
  • Enriching the clock watchers job and time managing the activities may shine a light on their strengths and weaknesses, helping you support these employees and improve and enable their level of job satisfaction and value of the contribution they make to the business.

The ‘Big Picture’ Person

When it comes to getting things done it may be a challenge for the ‘big picture’ employee. They can see what needs to happen and inspire others to help them understand how this will happen but they may struggle to focus on making it happen.

  • The big picture person is important to encourage the team to work to achieve long-term goals and projects incrementally.  If you have a balance on your team with members who enjoy detail and process, these people will align well with the big picture person.  Who is on your team and is the mix right?
  • How can you embrace the vision of the big picture person to know where the business direction is going at an operational level? If you do this how will this make the employee feel, and what difference will that make to their level of engagement?
  • Often the big picture person is seen as a dreamer and not a doer. Finding the right vehicles for the big picture person to dream and deliver may help your business continue to gain momentum.  Is this important to help your business remain relevant and provide more insight for other employees?

The Manipulator

The manipulator is often the employee who feels that they have to position other team members by any means to make them look good.  This can be harmless or they can be very destructive.

  • If you have identified a manipulator the default is often to discipline them or spend time putting out fires they have started.  What if you looked at how they are manipulating to identify what they are trying to achieve by doing this?
  • If the manipulator is trying to make themselves look like a hero, how can you give them ownership of a task or project or offer them professional learning to teach them how to do this without creating collateral damage.
  • Often the manipulator’s behaviour is a cry for help.  They are feeling insecure or incompetent and this makes them fearful of their longevity and value to the business.  They often do not understand that they are being destructive or causing the behaviour that they do and may be horrified to think that this is what they are known for.  Showing the manipulator how to demonstrate value, how that is measured and rewarded is a learning process that can realign what once was a challenging employee into a champion employee.

The Follower

The follower just wants to be told what to do, how to do it and get on with doing it.

A follower can become stuck in a rut with little thought or attention to detail when they go through the motions to get the job done.  What if you changed some of the tasks or the ways they were to be done and supported this with training and guidance?

  • Often followers are motivated by basic safety needs and not by incentives and rewards.  Reframing their roles to expand what they do may challenge this. If you leverage the strengths and apply them to new job duties they may respond positively because they see themselves as team players. This will only work if they believe you are not trying to take them away from where they know they are capable. This process, if successful, reinforces their roles rather than changes them in their eyes.
  • How often do you see too many followers and inadequate leadership in teams?  When this happens you have a ‘pack mentality’ that is not conducive to productivity or profitability. If you identify the strengths of all your team members could this help you to change this dynamic?
  • Followers need guidelines or they operate by habit.  Is your business structured to facilitate this or do your team members just operate as they see best?

The Bully

These team members are your human resource nightmare.  This type of employee has the potential to create staff complaint or churn.

  • The typical reaction to a bully is negative and often this may just reinforce the bully to keep doing what they are doing. Likewise, calling them on that behaviour could also create a challenge.  Find out why this behaviour is happening in a non-confrontational way and you might find what pieces are missing that is causing this so you can remediate.
  • A bully often behaves this way because they feel inadequate and they are trying to compensate for what they are lacking.  Find out what is lacking and you may be on the way to defusing that behaviour,
  • Bullies often push to get their own way to validate how they think and how they behave.  Creating a collaborative work environment that is KPI’d on both individual and group efforts may help the bully to conform to achieve outcomes or be seen as the problem if they don’t.

The Innovator

Every team needs innovators to shift thinking from delivering services and products to delivering solutions.

  • Innovators are only an asset to a team when they are given the space and opportunity to discover and innovate.  How will you support this?
  • Innovators need to be measured to ensure that they focus on what the business needs to achieve.  How will you measure your innovators’ input and contribution to solutions and team performance?
  • Innovation can detract from the core business.  How can you structure your team aims and objectives to keep that focus while embracing innovation to remain relevant and competitive?

The Attention Seeker

Everyone likes attention but some employees seek it more than others.  These people can consume time and resource if left unchecked.

  • Why is your attention seekers attention seeking?  Are they looking for acknowledgement or recognition, and if so, why?
  • When you identify what the attention seeker’s motivation is you are able to understand what they need to perform effectively without feeling the need to find reassurance and reinforcement.
  • Rewarding autonomy and initiative may assist to reaffirm worth and value for the attention seeker.  This may work so long as that recognition is visible, and positions them as important in the team environment.

The Social Butterfly

Some employees see the workplace as a social environment.  Although it is good to create healthy relationships in the workplace balance is key.

  • What does the social butterfly want from the workplace?  Are they lonely, have low self-esteem or see their workmates as their friends first and foremost?  Workplaces can satisfy the need to belong, but it is important to nurture a culture where an employee feels they belong and are accepted, but are focussed on delivering what the business needs.  How will you elevate the social butterfly from someone who is perceived as someone who spends too much time around the water cooler, to one who is recognized as a productive and valued team member?
  • Harness the social butterflies talents!  Maybe they can run the social club or coordinate events?
  • Tightening the parameters around time management with performance measurement is another option, shining the light on what is really getting done.

The Reclusive

When an employee feels confronted or intimidated they may become reclusive and go within themselves.

Finding out why your team member is reclusive is the first step to understanding how to change that circumstance.

Being reclusive does not have to mean being unproductive, however, you need to be able to have transparency as to what these team members are actually doing.  If this assessment shows a strong work ethic it may not indicate any overarching challenges that exist but may indicate a person who prefers to work this way.

Respecting the reclusive team member is important, regardless of why they are reclusive, as this suggests that this is their natural default behaviour or by circumstance, they behave this way.  Tread carefully to encourage these team members to have a voice and you may learn a lot from what they have to say.

The Imposter

These team members often get promoted or secure a role without really having the qualifications or experience to perform in that role.

  • Imposters spend their time trying not to get found out.  Symptoms of this are poor performance, delegation and micromanagement.  Treating those symptoms may mean professional learning and mentoring or realignment of their roles. Be careful not to treat only the symptoms.  Focus on true change management.
  • The longer an imposter goes unchecked the more they are likely to impact the productivity of the team performance.  Regular team health checks are important.
  • An imposter will have more impact the higher their level of responsibility.  When you look at your team do you see an imposter impeding decision making and actions?  If so, how will you address this?

Team ‘awesome’ is a work in progress!

Profiling your people and making them feel supported as you go through this process will build trust and confidence and allay fears.

This is not about changing the job description but rather changing the job design. Emphasise and measure the strength and offset the impact of weaknesses by enabling other team members who demonstrate that those weaknesses are their strengths to align the team dynamic to compliment.


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People Are The Fuel That Makes Success Happen

As a business owner you spend a lot of time working under the bonnet of your business. Time and resource is allocated to plan, strategize and to put processes in place that will help you to make smart choices that deliver smart outcomes. However, it is the fuel that you put into the business to drive it, the people you employ, align yourself with and the customers you serve that determines if your business breaks down or runs smoothly.


5 Smart People Choices To Fuel Your Business

  • Employing or surrounding yourself with people that are not like you.  This will help give you different perspective and encourage you to look at things differently.
  • Employing or surrounding yourself with people that will challenge you to evolve. It is very easy to do things the way you do because you always have.  What if there is a better way?
  • Employing or surrounding yourself with people who have different strengths to you.  This is what truly brings about strong teams when the balance of skill sets is complimentary.
  • Employing or surrounding yourself with people that are smarter than you.  If you choose not to see this as threatening the benefits are enormous. First and foremost smart people make you look good if you lead them well.
  • Employing or surrounding yourself with people that can problem solve and innovate. This is when you truly start to discover opportunity.

5 Not-So- Smart People Choices That May Stall Your Business

  • Employing and surrounding yourself with people just because they went to the right school or have the right qualifications.
  • Employing and surrounding yourself with people who are recommended to you or as a favour for a friend without first making sure that they are the right fit.
  • Employing and surrounding yourself with people who make decisions on your behalf without conferring with you.
  • Employing and surrounding yourself with people who are change-phobic.
  • Employing and surrounding yourself with people who are there for the money and the perks but don’t have the passion.

3 Questions you need to ask yourself when making decisions about people

  1. Are the right people in the right roles in your business?
  2. Are you identifying who your customers really are and if so how are you doing that?
  3. Are you aligning your business with the right partners and affiliates to advantage both parties?


Originally posted 2017-01-12 16:21:11.

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People Make or Break Digital Transformation

Building a smarter business starts with your business’ employees. This is where digital transformation must begin. A sustainable business model must, at its foundation, ensure that the right people are aligned with the right roles.



The  digital maturity of the people that make up your business matters. This will determine your business’ success when your business is faced with change and disruption.

Traditional approach to employee alignment

  • Delegation
  • Training
  • Deployment
  • Secondment

Digital approach to employee alignment

  • Assessing digital maturity
  • Alignment of employees to the right roles and responsibilities

Contributors to successful employee alignment

  • How and what your employees communicate,
  • Your employee’s behaviour, approach and willingness to adapt and learn
  • When recruiting employ the right employees and ensure that they are aligned to the right roles and responsibilities.

This will make the real difference and have the biggest impact on success across the business.

Which employee types do you recognize?

The ‘Elastic’ Employee


  • They are flexible and as a result embrace new opportunities and projects
  • ‘Elastic’ employees always have their hands up to take on a new challenge and  lead new ventures.
  • They will ‘bend and stretch’ in many directions and they are almost always resilient
  • When you need to get something done ‘elastic’ employees are your ‘go to’ people
  • ‘Elastic’ employees get increasingly frustrated by ‘plastic’ and ‘jigsaw’ employees.
  • The need  of the ‘elastic’ employee to get things done can create friction in the workplace.
  • ‘Plastic’ and ‘jigsaw’ employee will push back  when the lead of the ‘elastic’ employee is seen as too demanding
  • Will become disenchanted if he/she does not have the emotional intelligence to lead the ‘plastic’ and ‘jigsaw’ employee to gain their trust and confidence.

The ’Plastic’ Employee

  • The ‘plastic’ employee has been moulded by the culture of the business.
  • They are dependable, consistent and you can trust them to follow the company line.
  • The ‘plastic’ employee is dedicated and rote in the way they conduct themselves.
  • They thrive in a consistent environment that follows processes and procedures to the letter.
  • The pros of the ‘plastic’ employee will likely become cons very quickly when the business is disrupted or embarks on a digital transformation journey.
  • The sturdy, dependable ‘plastic’ employee will therefore push back on initiatives if they require them to adopt new ways of doing things.
  • If the business has ‘plastic’ employees predominantly in senior management roles the business will consequently struggle to be nimble and agile.

The ‘Jigsaw’ Employee

  • The ‘jigsaw’ employee is trained by the business for the business.
  • This employee is usually a long time employee.
  • They are an employee that has been either trained by the company or one that has been in the industry all their working life.
  • This employee knows the way it has to be done and as a result does their job well.
  • The experience and competency they bring to the business is especially relevant.
  • They are dependable and their performance is consequently consistent.
  • When a ‘jigsaw’ employee is placed in the right role in the right business unit they are seen as team players.
  • The ‘jigsaw’ employee is usually liked and respected by their peers.
  • They are comfortable in their own skin and most of all are non-threatening.
  • When change is experienced in a business the ‘jigsaw’ employee will either be resistant or avoid it.
  • The ‘jigsaw’ employee in the same role in the same business division will not evolve because this will reinforce the behaviour you are trying to change.
  • If the ‘jigsaw’ employee feels that change will move the parameter of where they see their skill set and experience their performance will almost always decline.
  • A ‘jigsaw’ employee will quickly become the piece that does not fit when they are expected to do things that as a result will take them out of their comfort zone.
  • The ‘jigsaw’ employee that was once well liked, consistent and experienced, while still valuable, now seems like they are uncooperative.
  • They are also probably more likely to default to ‘doing things the way they have always been done’.
  • The ‘jigsaw’ employee would rather shy away from embracing new ways of achieving outcomes for the business when faced with change..

Invest in your employees first! Value and recognize their importance and relevance as the key to unlocking your business’ success in digital transformation.

Why people make or break digital transformation

  • Your employees are especially relevant as they are the lifeblood of your business and technology is the enabler.
  • If you do not transform your employees your digital transformation journey will almost certainly be flawed and may stall.
  • The secret is to identify your ‘elastic’, ‘plastic’ and ‘jigsaw’ employees as your first step in your digital transformation journey.
  • The next step is to recognize where they add value, where they don’t and how they can or can’t contribute to your changing business model.

Originally posted 2016-08-17 17:42:49.

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6 Indicators of Business Culture Shock

What are the clear indicators that your business is suffering from ‘culture shock’?

Change is constant and disruption inevitable in today’s business climate. You really should’t be surprised that, with the pace of change, it is almost certain that the employees in your business are more than likely to be suffering from some form of ‘culture shock’.

If you understand what the indicators of ‘culture shock’ are then you are better able to align your employees and give them the tools and skills they will need to engage and embrace change and innovation


6 Indicators Your Business is Suffering from Culture Shock

1/ Denial

Behaviours may include:-

  • Making excuses rather than embracing solutions to avoid change and doing things differently.  This is also commonly seen as ’employees choosing to believe that change comes and goes and will pass if you choose not to acknowledge it’
  • Avoiding discussing changes that may effect the status quo of their role or the business’ operations.
2/ Fear

Behaviours may include:-

  • Too busy doing the job to have time to consider other options that may be better for the business.
  • Employing or surrounding themselves with people like themselves to avoid confrontation and change in the way things are done.
3/ Ignorance

Behaviours may include:-

  • Default activity is always toward traditional process with no interest in new ways of doing things.
  • Lack of interest and engagement in educational and training activities that are offered or may be an opportunity for them to upskill.
4/ Defiance

Behaviours may include:-

  1. Opening disagreeing or questioning the validity of suggested initiatives because challenging an initiative suggests that the employee may stall or delay change.
  2. “This is the way we have always done business” is their ‘catch cry’ and they don’t want to be convinced that this should be changed. This can be due to either fear or denial.
5/ Acceptance

Behaviours may include:-

  • Compliant but passive in the implementation of change management initiatives.
  • Saying ‘yes’ without understanding why a task should be performed just because it is easier to agree.
  • The motivation for their behaviour is always to first and foremost protect their jobs as their top priority.
  • Believing that they can’t change or have any control of what is happening around them.
6/ Control

Behaviours may include:-

  • Talking with authority and knowledge on subject matter where they have not had any expertise.
  • Unwillingness to collaborate with others to make change happen.
  • Creating silos or teams that are isolated from the core business because they believe what they are doing is the right way to do things.

Developing your employees is always more important than developing your technology.  That is simply because the technology alone cannot transform your business.

Your employees will not engage because you train them to do a task.  Your employees will engage when they understand, embrace, take ownership and engage in the process of change.

You must first ask yourself how digitally mature are your employees?

What are their credentials to enable them to be capable to perform the tasks and roles that you are expecting them to?

Technology is the toolkit. It is your people who are the facilitators of  your business’ change and innovation.  Take the time to get to know what your employee’s digital capabilities and readiness is.



Originally posted 2016-05-07 11:25:09.

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Culture Shift: People vs Change

Digital transformation has become the ‘catch phrase’ of 2016.  Smart businesses now recognize that their business model needs to transform to remain relevant. Smart businesses also know their employees must embrace change. To achieve success with digital transformation a business must first of all achieve a sustainable culture shift.

How do you effect culture change?

….be ‘BRAVE’



Engage your employees from the ‘ground up’ in brainstorming sessions.

This will encourage the following behaviours:

  • ownership
  • engagement
  • ideation


This will unlock opportunities for your business to:

  • Recognize and acknowledge that the perspective of each employees will differ.
  • Understand how your employees see your business.
  • Acknowledge that his will determine how they will want to interact with your business.
  • Accept that this is where they see the business now and in the future.

The following outcomes will be:

  • What your employees envisage will illustrate how much they want to engage with your business.
  • It will also measure how much ownership they want to take of your business’ culture and direction.
  • This process is especially relevant as it will start to identify who your business’ change agents are.


Your business needs to take the following steps:

Your business needs to learn to ask the following question every time a decision is made in the business :

“How can digital make this more effective and efficient”.


Engage with your employees by:

  • Listening to your employees and learning how and what they think.
  • Recognizing and acknowledging their ideas as worthwhile.
  • Authenticating your employee’ ideas through discussion and submission forums for consideration to establish engagement.
  • Validating the authentication of your employees through socialization and other communication opportunities.


Bookmarks to achieve employee validation:

  • Validate what your employees have to say. They want to be heard.
  • Show interest and engagement to let your employees know that what they think matters.
  • Validation is what motivates and inspires your employees.

‘What matters’ to you employees

If you become mindful of your employees need for validation you will start to elevate ‘what matters’ to your employees.

Emotional intelligence

To make the above steps work and to lead a successful digital transformation you need to have a high emotional intelligence.

To successfully drive change you need to

  • Understand the impact it will have on your employees.
  • Be conscious of your own emotional responses and reactions.
  • Realize that your behaviour sets the tone for the workplace.
  • Understand that your employees will respond to you if you show them empathy and acknowledge the value they bring to the business.
  • Recognize that having a blind expectation that your employees will perform based on what their job description says you will always disappoint.
…. have ‘RESOLVE’



The human condition is motivated by reward.

You need to ask yourself…

  • Why your employees would want to get involved in your agenda for digital transformation?
  • What is in it for them?

Your business needs to…

Determine key performance indicators (KPI’s) and provide incentives for identified ‘digital’ champions to motivate them to lead. Reward your ‘digital’ champion performance.

Those rewards could be…

  • opportunity
  • promotion
  • responsibility
  • education
  • training
  • equity
  • ownership
  • remuneration
  • other ideas!!


  • Continue to educate to empower your employees.
  • Embrace knowledge as a way to offset concerns your employees may have.
  • Recognize that your employees have different learning styles.
  • Deliver omni-channel training and learning experiences that are visual, written, audio and interactive
  • Accelerate a culture of acceptance and understanding to tolerate failure as a step towards learning


  • Silos insulate employees from what the business is doing and thinking.
  • Introducing socialization channels and opportunities will create discussion and debate. This will generate conversation.
  • Expose your employees to hearing and seeing how other employees and departments think and interact  around change and they will be less likely to be passengers.


  • Create momentum by enabling and empowering key employees who will own, champion and lead your digital transformation internally.
  • Acknowledge that a C-Suite-led digital transformation is a foundation but will not successfully transform a business.
  • Empower your employee champions.  If they are given ownership and responsibility they will create momentum for change. This is when you will see the real benefits for the business.


Lead by example! 

  • Employees need to see that you are confident and consistent in your message about how the business’ culture will transform.
  • This will  enable your employees to embrace change.
  • Make your message clear and decisive so your employees know what is expected of them.


Create visibility for your employees.  Perception that your business is hiding or holding back information will see your employees put up barriers to change. The result is that your culture will not shift.


  • Your employees are the best advertisement for digital transformation in your business.
  • Your employee evangelists, if well supported, are in the best position to convert  your change averse employees.
  • You can help by making sure your door is always open and you interact with your employees.

How do you continue to encourage culture change?

….you must ‘FACILitATE’ an environment that is conducive to this




Flexibility is important because….

  • to be responsive to change your business needs to be flexibile to be responsive to changes that occur in your competitive landscape.
  • your employee churn rate will climb if your business is not flexible to change.
  • today’s employee is looking for businesses that recognize and respect their need for work/life balance.
  • employees like being aligned professionally with progressive companies.  Millennials exemplify this trend.



Traditional businesses often have legacy systems embedded in their operations that inhibit their ability to be agile.


Digital transformation works to make traditional businesses more agile.  This process is usually implemented incrementally as legacy systems can take some time to integrate or eliminate.

Remember …you need to remember that small changes can bring big efficencies.


Communication is key throughout a digital transformation.  Communicating the what, when, where and who is responsible is integral to your business’ success. How you communicate must always be open and reciprocal.


Incubation means…

  • Ability to nurture ideas and innovation
  • Supporting employee initiatives
  • Actively encouraging intrapreneurship


Businesses traditionally have layers of strategy throughout their business.  These layers of strategy are usually underpinned by a whole-of- business strategy.  The challenge is that these layers can create a disconnection within the business if they are supported and implemented by divisions and departments independent of each other .

Your whole-of-business strategy needs to be customer-centric and  customer-led. Each department or division initiative needs to support this.

The question that must always be asked for each business initiative is:

‘How can digital make this smarter or simpler’.

This approach transcends the traditional layers of the business.


The word ‘innovation’ like ‘disruption’ is somewhat overused and often misunderstood.

Innovation does not have to mean something that changes the course of the business.  It can be something that is a ‘tweak’ to the business operations.

The emphasis should always be to make the business more efficient and effective. This can happen with very little change.

Innovation needs to become a mindset.  Everyone needs to ask how can we make this smarter or simpler?


A business that is an open book can be very dynamic.  A business that operates openly and collaboratively is more likely to position itself to become a market leader.

Digital transformation can deliver data that will assist with transparency and inform businesses to help them make the right decisions.


A siloed or segmented business will struggle to survive disruption and change.

Finding accord through customer-centricity within your business and embracing digital to drive this in your business strategy will create common business goals.

This approach will also ensure your employees are aware of what is happening, where the business is headed, and what the business wants to achieve.



Ensuring that the platforms and channels you use are connected and communicate fluently across the business is vital to facilitating digital transformation.


Whether your employees are in a customer service role or an operational role within your business they need to know what is going on and how it impacts the rest of the business.


Disruption is inevitable and no industry is exempt.  Embracing digital positions your business to be better prepared.

Disruption and change will occur but rather than be reactive to what other businesses are doing you will be able to be proactive.

You need to ask the following questions.

  • How can new technologies and business initiatives benefit your business?
  • How can you collaborate rather than compete?
  • In which ways can you complement or bring value?

Digitalizing your business with technology without recognizing how the culture of your business will be impacted is foolhardy and shortsighted.

Employees will accelerate business evolution if supported, educated and aligned.

What is your business doing to effect and encourage culture shift?

Originally posted 2016-04-27 14:40:23.

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How To Become Emotionally FIT

Your emotions are just like your muscles, they need to be trained to get the best out of them.  Becoming emotionally fit requires discipline and dedication, however, the reward is undeniable.

Having the ability to control your emotions, rather than letting your emotions control you, is when you become truly empowered.

emotionally fit

3 Steps To Becoming Emotionally FIT?


‘F’ stands for feelings.  We all have them, and we all deal with them in different ways.  Often we dwell on them and let them control us. This is where we can come unstuck.

Take the time to feel the emotion, but don’t indulge yourself by dwelling on it or overthinking it.  Where is it coming from, why are you feeling it and what does it feel like?


‘I’ is for impact.  Examine what the impact of that emotion you are feeling really has.  Our perception of how the emotion feels often overshadows the reality of what it means or how it affects us.


  • Is the emotion you are feeling triggered by something or someone?
  • Is a pattern emerging and this is a recurring scenario?
  • Is this a ’cause’ and ‘effect’ situation that will never happen again?

Understanding the ‘impact’ is an important step to understanding how the ‘feeling’ actually changes or doesn’t change your reality, rather than letting the emotion create a perception of what that change may or may not mean.


‘T’ is for Takeaway.  After you have felt the emotion and understood its ‘impact’, the next step is to determine what the learning is so that you are able to realize it as a ‘takeaway’.  This is critical to making the most of the process.  What you learn will help you to not repeat the process, and instead grow from the experience.

The FIT process is best undertaken with a journal or notepad.  When you write down your ‘feelings’, their ‘impact’ and your ‘takeaways’ on paper you are documenting the experience in a form that you can keep, re-read and reference. This will help you to keep your eye on and address patterns or repeat behaviours.

Remember this is a marathon that you are training for, not a sprint.  Skills you learn to tone your emotional fitness will serve you throughout your life as you grow and evolve as a person.


Flex your emotional muscle.  You may surprise yourself by discovering how emotionally unfit you really are and how, by tweaking how you behave, you can improve and strengthen your emotional fitness to be the best version of yourself.

Want to learn more?

Complete this quick assessment to gain insight into how emotionally intelligent you are.  This can help you to gain even more insight into how you think and behave and to learn where and how you can improve.

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Help! My Business Culture is Broken

Business must become agile and nimble and be responsive and proactive to change. To be successful they must also be conscious and accountable for the impact change imposes on their employees.

business culture

The inevitable casualty of change is the business culture.  Business that introduce technology innovation without giving consideration to employee role alignment and capability are doing themselves a disservice. They are also setting themselves up for failure.

Business that choose to ignore or dismiss employee discomfort and resistance to change will feel the impact through social media and employee review platforms like and…just to name a few.

The accelerated growth of employee review sites has exposed businesses with no easy road of recourse to address negativity from disgruntled employees.

3 mistakes that can damage employer brand

1/ Posting reply comments that are standardized to acknowledge comments.

Some businesses choose to have a standardized response to comments that they post on employee review sites. When an employee or ex-employee voices their discontent with a business this should not be answered with a generic comment response. Such a response only reiterates that the business is out of touch with what their employees are thinking and feeling.

2/ Asking employees to post positive comments to counterbalance negative comments.

Because employers cannot delete negative comments that are made on employee review sites they sometimes ask employees to write positive comments to counterbalance the readers perspective.  This inevitably can backfire if a disgruntled employee then publishes a comment stating that this happens.  The employer then looks worse and as if they are trying to mislead the reader.

3/ Ignoring comments all together.

People say ignorance is bliss but on an employee review platform this is a dangerous practice.  Ignorance suggests that as an employer you don’t care or are just arrogant enough to think that people will not take notice of negative media.

Employee review sites are here to stay.  They are often amplified by the virality of social media.  Identifying what your past and present employees are saying and if their is a theme of discontent is an opportunity for your business to address pain points in your business culture.

Treat the cause by recognizing and acknowledging the symptoms

5 point employee checklist

  1. Do your employees feel like their opinion is important and relevant?
  2. Is there a theme that is consistent across most of the comments that tells a story?
  3. Are you listening to your employees and if so what are you doing about their feedback?
  4. Do you articulate the voice of your employees in your business operation?
  5. Do you engage with  your employees in brainstorming and ideation sessions to enable them to take ownership and responsibility?  If so, do they also see reward and recognition for their efforts?


Originally posted 2016-10-27 14:21:43.

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Employees Talking Trash or Truth?

Employee’s voices are now amplified more than ever before through opportunity and exposure to platforms that enable employees to review the companies they work for now or have worked for.


Trash or truth : Employee review sites that tell the stories…

Employer branding describes an organization’s reputation as an employer and the value it brings to its employees. Employees have long been warned about the dangers of social media and reputation with social media checks now mandatory. Companies are now becoming aware that their brand is exposed to the same dangers with employees sharing their experiences more readily than ever before.

A snapshot of popular sites that invite employee reviews…


Glassdoor is by far the most readily recognized in this space.  It was founded in 2007 in California and is a multi-faceted recruitment site.  It also has a very powerful and well-known employee review platform.


Seek is well-known as a leading recruitment site and also recognized as an online learning portal.  The inclusion of a volunteer platform that is seen as a leader in volunteering opportunities is a flagship for Seek.   The introduction of employee review and the and a search option for the best workplaces in Australia is in line with the trend to deliver this information to help employees learn as much about a potential company before accepting and offer to join them.


Indeed promotes itself as the #1 job site in the world.  With the influence of over 200 million unique visitors every month in over 60 different countries employers should take notice.

The eyeballs that employee reviews attract using this platform means that negative company reviews can have a bad impact on your company brand.  Indeed offer both reviews and forums to enable candidates to engage and interact.

job advisor

JobAdvisor is a platform that helps you to search or brows to discover Australia’s best employers.  JobAdvisor says “There’s no such thing as a bad employer, just a boad culture match.  Our mission is to give everyone the information they need to help make sure their next employer is a good fit before they apply.”

career bliss

Careerbliss’ aim when it launched in 2008 was to create an online career community that was designed to help you find happiness in the workplace and in your career.  It is an information hub for everyone in the workforce – employers, job seekers and recruiters,

The reality is that companies now, more than ever before, need to be aware of how healthy your business culture is.  A vibrant and resilient culture improves employee morale, increases productivity and reduces staff churn. How your culture is reflected in employee reviews impacts the quality candidates you may attract to your business.

Originally posted 2016-10-27 14:16:10.

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Interruption V Disruption: Which creates change resilience?

Interruption creates a trajectory of progressive transition while disruption creates a trajectory of more rapid transformation.

If your business is change or risk averse ‘interruption’ can introduce the opportunity for your employees to engage and take ownership of change incrementally.  This is less confrontational than ‘disruption’ and allows the business to experience evolution rather than revolution.  Interruption can encourage an appetite and accelerate change by kick-starting momentum. This can build the foundation for a change resilient workplace.


5 different ways ‘interruption’ can introduce and creates change


Your business can learn and benefit from enabling and embracing relationships with start-ups, SME’s and entrepreneurs. Actively mentoring, nurturing or investing in an innovation hub will enable your business to keep your finger on the digital pulse.

You can offset being disrupted and work towards future-proofing your business when you discover where industry, non-industry, and best practices may impact on where your business model is heading. Entertaining opportunity proactively advantages your business in a competitive or even a duopoly market.

Encouraging intrapreneurial behaviour within your business is a natural flow-on from engaging and partnering with an ideation and innovative community.


How can your business do things smarter using digital tools when you are making decisions in your business? Asking this question will facilitate a fundamental mind-shift that will start to evolve your business.  Digital tools are only advantageous when they are introduced, integrated and aligned to work and play well with existing platforms and channels.  Becoming aware of and learning more about tools and trends will educate your business. Your business will learn how it can improve its productivity as well as business efficiency and effectiveness.


Exposure through strategic partnerships, alignments and affiliations are imperative to position your business to be open to opportunity and change. This is a great way to realize quick wins and stick your toes in the water.  A ‘risk’ shared, where the value and benefit are clearly defined, will deliver more gain than pain when done effectively. This is always attractive when introducing a change in direction to an established business.


Your employees are your greatest asset. Investment in their education, enrichment, role alignment and career progression is integral to your success. When your employees have confidence, feel their skill set is relevant and relative this is reflected in their performance.  Encouraging ideation, intrapreneurs and brainstorming are essential to creating engagement and ownership. When your employees are performance-enhanced your business will benefit notably in your change transformation process.  The introduction of prototyping to visualize, communicate and socialize innovation and ideation will also enrich thinking and drive change.  This will assist your business to realize outcomes.  When nurtured this supports an informed business environment that will breed confidence and allays the fear of failure. This encourages your employees to become involved and engage.


Technology, when identified and aligned with a ‘living’ digital strategy, will create agility. This can co-exist with legacy systems as your business transitions.  To be effective new technology much demonstrate that it can enhance, supersede or be able to address redundancy in your technology ecosystem. Your business does not need to erase your technology footprint and start again to start to introduce change. When an investment has already been made to establish expensive technology platforms a business can be reluctant to introduce a new approach. They may feel that this may accelerate the redundancy of the existing platform.  Demonstrated compatibility and a transition plan that maximizes value and reduces overheads will overcome resistance from invested parties.

Remember ‘interruption’ or ‘disruption’ without strategic planning is naive and somewhat foolhardy.  Smart business’ must invest in the process of auditing, assessing and benchmarking their business first to make informed decisions that will evoke change.  Interruption and disruption are approaches to change, not solutions.

To accelerate your business’ digital transformation journey you need to determine if the approach should be ‘interruption’ or ‘disruption’. This is important to stop your business stalling when it faces changes that take your employees out of their comfort zone.

Originally posted 2016-10-22 15:02:38.

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Why Purpose Is Necessary To Improve Productivity

Do you feel you are more motivated and your productivity is heightened when you have a sense of purpose?

Being purposeful is something that gives us all a sense of value and worth and is integral to what we do and why we do it.


Being purposeful has a significant impact on how productive your business is, given that it is people that make or break the success of your business.

5 Steps To Create Purposeful Employees

  1. Inclusivity –  This is an important first initial step to ensure that your employees feel part of the journey from the outset. Employees that feel like decisions are being made without their consultation will immediately become defensive and resistant to adopting change. 
  2. Brainstorming –  This is a pivotal step that kick starts the planning process with a no barriers or borders. Employees feel they have a forum to be heard and to contribute.
  3. Ownership – This gives the employee a feeling of being an integral part of the journey to solve the problem, help create and deliver the solution.
  4. Responsibility – This empowers the employee to feel that the journey is incomplete without them as they hold responsibility for outcomes that are critical to the success of the solution when it is delivered.
  5. Accountability –  This is the final step that ensures the employee feels ‘stickiness’ to solving the problem successfully as they will be held accountable, and therefore must be involved and engaged to ensure the outcome reflects positively on their involvement.

An employee who is not engaged is considered to be an ‘active job seeker’.  source

Your Top 10 ‘ Benefits of Having Purpose’ Checklist

  1. Your ‘purpose’ is a key motivator and gives you a tangible reason to plan and execute.
  2. Your ‘purpose’ enables you to set goals you want to achieve.
  3. Your ‘purpose’ ensures you are focused on solutions, not problems.
  4. Your ‘purpose’ gives you confidence that you will achieve what your objectives are and experience success.
  5. You can easily communicate what your ‘purpose’ is when asked.
  6. You talk about your ‘purpose’ with enthusiasm and joy that is infectious.
  7. Others want to become part of the solution because they can relate to your ‘purpose’.
  8. Your ‘purpose’ delivers a value that is contextual to the investment you must make to reap benefits.
  9. Your ‘purpose’ gives you clarity in your ability to collaborate, plan and execute.
  10. Your ‘purpose’ can be expressed as a value proposition to deliver multiple solutions because it helps you to think laterally.

The first question every business needs to ask is …what is the cost to your business for having employees who are not purposeful?

The defining question is… can you afford not to make the investment in your employees to ensure they are on the journey with you?


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