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  • 15 pieces of cake? Averil debates happiness on Radio Five Live… | White Water Group
    Aug 2015 mp3 Do we live on a happiness scale Averil was recently a guest on Radio 5 Live debating on happiness and well being With her Leadership hat on she makes the point that people who are fortunate enough to be able to play to their strengths at work are often the most happy and how some of the people we work with in the Corporate World are unaware

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/2015/08/24/15-pieces-of-cake-averil-debates-happiness-on-radio-five-live/ (2015-11-08)
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  • François co-authors article in Financial Times calling for the redefinition of MBA curricula for Gen Y leaders | White Water Group
    Y Leaders McGill News 0 This article which François co authored with his fellow MBA alumni stresses the need for innovation in MBA programmes to ensure their future relevance as well as the continued nurturing and development of tomorrow s leaders The renowned scholar Henry Mintzberg who is a professor at McGill s Desautels Faculty of Management adds that he believes the very definition of management lies at the heart of the issue management should be viewed as a practice and not a science that is a holistic combination of art science and craft Management education taught as a practice should result in tomorrow s leaders being capable of confronting real life situations creatively and with the technical skills acquired from their innovative MBA programme The piece in the FT is a product of François participation as a panellist at McGill University s MBA NEXT 50 conference entitled Loyalty Through the Eyes of Generations Y Z earlier this year The discussion explored the differences between these two generations and their predecessors as well as questioning how to build customer and employee loyalty for Millennials who are tomorrow s leaders To read more on the management of Gens Y and Z

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/2015/07/17/francois-co-authors-article-in-financial-times-calling-for-the-redefinition-of-mba-curricula-for-gen-y-leaders/ (2015-11-08)
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  • Dealing with failure and embarrassment: Averil discusses this and more on BBC Radio West Midlands | White Water Group
    Midlands Posted on 02 07 2015 By Vanessa Bouchard Categories News Opinions Women Tags Failure Risk taking Selective Perception Women 0 http whitewatergroup eu wp content uploads 2015 07 Averil on BBC Radio WM mp3 Related Posts CEO for a Day New research on culture change launched at IWD breakfast All about women Averil interviewed by Elaine Ball CEO of EBTM Averil on Women Happiness BBC Radio West Midlands interview

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/2015/07/02/dealing-with-failure-or-embarrassment-averil-discusses-this-and-more-on-bbc-radio-west-midlands/ (2015-11-08)
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  • The end of hierarchy? Circles in the sky… : White Water Group
    hierarchies stem from a command and control view of the world This comes first from the military but then from the specialised roles demanded by industrialisation Taylor s time motion studies date back to the 1880s and today s organisations are little different from that implemented by Alfred Sloan in the 1920s If modern work should be self organising then why do we still work in non self organising hierarchies We have all had the experience of the organisational chart says this but things are actually done like that Fighting the system and baronies reduces our agility and slows us down So if not pyramids then what Current thinking points to Sociocracy as a possible answer Sociocracy is a form of consensus based governance to support a common cause at a local level Consensus doesn t mean democracy or full agreement it means a good enough convergent decision to progress towards an agreed goal Each local cause is managed by a circle of participants without formal hierarchy other than a circle moderator This circle is linked to and can overlap other circles in the organisation Because the decisions in one circle affect other circles you have feedback loops between circles Decisions affecting more than one circle that cannot be solved at that level are made by a broader circle formed by representatives from each circle The idea is not new it was developed in the Netherlands in the 1970s but it has acquired a new life with variations such as Holacracy a more practical approach to implementing Sociocratic principles We are seeing the first real life tests in large companies Zappos com a division of Amazon famous for its advanced organisational thinking has recently made headlines by challenging its staff to adopt Holacracy or take a severance package There is

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/leaders_blog_post/the-end-of-hierarchy-circles-in-the-sky/ (2015-11-08)
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  • Move over – I’m smarter! What do today’s leaders need to know about managing tomorrow’s leaders? : White Water Group
    know about The answer to the first question may come from asking yourself about the formative years of a generation did they grow up in a time where their parents were getting sacked in the name of delayering This goes a long way to explain the cynical view of many generation X employees towards big corporations This also has a geographic component collapse of the Soviet Union v China boom as well an industrial one in the US Rust Belt any job is good news Once we understand the story of each group we need to ask ourselves if the processes that were built for previous generations are still valid for the next one if we pay people for their knowledge and their expertise why do we still measure their time for example If we have a generation where both parents have careers who needs to be flexible Creative organisations will be more attractive It is up to us to listen to the next generation and find new metrics and processes that will satisfy both the business and the emerging leaders group s aspirations So what about the Millenials they are the most optimistic connected principled worldly and smart working group the world has ever seen The panel agreed that these characteristics generally could withstand the mortgage test they will not lose their ideals when they hit a cash squeeze they will simply adapt their lifestyle But their loyalty has a price they need to remain engaged they need to respect their bosses they need to keep learning It is not always easy one of my co panellists mentioned that younger managers often exhibited impatience before they had gone through a full learning cycle in this case a financial year He addressed it by created intermediary job titles that showed

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/leaders_blog_post/move-over-im-smarter-what-do-todays-leaders-need-to-know-about-managing-tomorrows-leaders/ (2015-11-08)
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  • Neuroscience and Leadership: it’s all about behaviours, not pretty pictures : White Water Group
    a better mapping of the brain we can now predict that when a certain area of the brain is injured we will observe a certain change in competence or behaviour For example people with serious lesions to the frontal cortex are often incapable of emotional empathy and cannot function in a social environment Closer to home when I watched my husband have a stroke and I knew exactly which part of the cerebral cortex was affected the Broca s area responsible for speech He suffered expressive dysphasia a phrase he was able to say when Averil or hospital eluded him completely Second we can measure brain recovery which areas develop to take over damaged ones Recovery is often slow and needs to be supported by gargantuan efforts through good care and sheer bloody mindedness my husband has been able to resume his acting career and even play the part of King Lear The brain is almost magical I never fail to be amazed by the speed with which it reacts and organises our body e g something whispered in an ear will register on a galvanic skin response monitor a lie detector through increased sweat in a split second Think of the journey that took from your ear canal to your amygdala to your fingertips Quackery alert Coaching like all aspects of life is subject to fashions For instance when years of cognitive and behavioural psychology research were summarised and described by NLP Neuro Linguistic Programming it became all the rage and the basis of many coaching practices Its promise to be a psychological silver bullet did not hold and it fell out of fashion after a while We now have to be wary of quack neuroscience purporting to hold the answer to everything There are three basic issues with the application of neuroscience in coaching First the brain lights up so what We are told by Nobel Prize winner Eric Kandel that all mental processes even the most complex psychological processes derive from the operation of the brain This knowledge is important in damaged brains In healthy ones short of holding coaching sessions inside an MRI scanner it is of limited use What is actually useful is the confirmation of what psychologists have known for years that the brain evolves and is influenced by a combination of nature and nurture Thanks for the insight Second it can be a reductionist over simplistic approach aimed at confirming what one already thinks This is supported by the concomitant rubbishing of other disciplines assuming some sort of Neurotruth when in fact you cannot explore the complexity of the brain without reference to sociology cultural factors molecular science genetics and psychology They are all required to plumb the depths of complexity of the building blocks of cognition Third coaches with limited psychological insight are susceptible to be swayed by neuro quackery as illustrated by this hilarious experiment on neuroenchantment at McGill University It demonstrates the influence of neuro hype on the ability to

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/leaders_blog_post/neuroscience-and-leadership-its-all-about-behaviours-not-pretty-pictures/ (2015-11-08)
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  • In praise of imperfection : White Water Group
    spectacularly during various business simulations and come last Another interesting finding was that raw intellect was over rated social roles such as getting the best out of a diverse group or selling an idea externally did not require exceptional IQ Belbin s subsequent work came up with nine team role preferences and ways of blending them to create teams that delivered results These are not personality types merely what people are good at when you put them in a team including those who can be loners in day to day work Turning imperfect individuals into a high performing team Beyond selecting the right team leaders also know how to get it to perform consistently well There is an enormous amount of research on the subject today I ll mention just two Barbara Fredrickson s work on the impact of positive emotions demonstrates how a positive team environment expands the cognitive ability and creativity of all participants If you have been on any of our programmes you have almost certainly come across the magic formula of 5 1 Eric Berne s pioneering research on strokes demonstrated the fundamental need that we have for both physical and social interaction Teams that argue a lot are actually quite productive those that isolate or ignore some members are inevitably dysfunctional These are fairly simple rules yet over and over again we see teams made of clones also known as middle aged white men highly driven and who can crunch numbers focusing on not making mistakes isolating those who threaten orthodox thinking and quick to blame each other How can these behaviours be maintained in face of overwhelming evidence Perhaps it is the failure to realise that most of business life is actually made up of multiple teams delivering results as opposed to individual performance

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/leaders_blog_post/may-imperfection/ (2015-11-08)
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  • (De)-focused leadership? : White Water Group
    better So self awareness is the first step if you want to train new patterns of behaviour Be honest about where the interruptions to your focus come from remove them wherever you can and make informed decisions Focused leadership We know from our own leadership model that a key attribute of successful leaders is Drive and that Drive is a combination of energy Zest and the ability to focus despite high volumes of distraction a desire for detail competing demands and lack of certainty They seem to exert a consistently high degree of self control Furthermore successful leaders need what to focus on Daniel Goleman of Emotional Intelligence fame claims that leaders need to use focus on themselves to be aware of their own feelings values and intuitions on people to read them well manage relationships and on the big picture to understand the larger forces and systems and to determine the best strategy going forward Some basic tips We all vary in our ability to focus but individually experience a wide range of levels of concentration What can we do to consistently operate at the top of that range Don t even think about multi tasking If you want to know why try walking behind someone who is walking and texting especially if you are in a hurry they end up not doing either thing very well Science has shown that multi tasking doesn t work If you need to focus on more than one thing do what is called switch tasking Concentrate fully on the one thing for a period of time and then on the other Some of us love to be spinning plates all the time perhaps because we are terrified of getting bored Multi taskers just love the excitement Successful people learn to focus when they have to Learn to deal with distractions The obvious external distractions are people interrupting in person phone e mail etc Shut the door Tell them you need 30 minutes and to come back later Most things can wait that long Often we allow things to break our focus because we really don t want to do the task in hand That s probably because of the internal distractions thoughts like it s too difficult too complicated I m not smart enough or even what do I want for tea These thoughts intrude if you let them Keep drawing your attention back and politely telling yourself to shut up because it will probably be fine I have already had two people walk in and start talking while I was trying to write this Although I asked them nicely to leave me alone it took minutes to get my focus back because of point 1 I wanted to be in the middle of the plates Now concentrate Exercise your focus muscle when you need to concentrate check all your messages phone e mails Facebook and then switch everything off while you focus for 10 minutes Each day do a few minutes

    Original URL path: http://whitewatergroup.eu/leaders_blog_post/de-focused-leadership/ (2015-11-08)
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