Tribal Leaders – creating a tribal culture

After extensive study and research about leadership styles, developing leadership and learning about leadership – I can draw one conclusion: the more you develop yourself as a leader, the less of a leader you are.  How could this be? After reading quotes and speaking to business leaders I know, they each had the same answer: “Don’t ask me. I didn’t do anything!” The answer became very clear: the leader does not shape the organisation. It’s the culture. Culture eats strategy for breakfast, any day of the week! The successful leaders were the ones who stopped focusing on themselves, and created a … Continue reading

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Time…

…A resource we all seem to be starved of.  In the past when I asked people, “how are you?” the response was often “fine”.  In today’s workplace, with the advent of technology, rightsizing, double income families and the 12 hour work day, the response I now get is “busy”.  I often find myself longing for extra hours, rushing around, juggling competing priorities and asking “is this urgent or important?” and more often than not, the answer is both. Recently I met a man who put time into perspective for me.  I was kindly invited to a meeting of ‘like-minded people’, … Continue reading

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Overcoming procrastination

I’ve been putting off writing this blog for a while… What is procrastination? According to the Oxford English Dictionary, it’s “to put off; to delay taking action; to wait until later”. It’s most frequently associated with laziness or ‘not being bothered’ – but it’s often more complex a human behaviour than people give it credit. Procrastination goes deeper than sheer laziness, but that certainly does not mean that it can’t be solved with some behaviour change! How can we address the underlying issues? Time management courses and detailed ‘to do’ lists will never work with procrastinators.  They usually know exactly … Continue reading

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Etiquette where has it gone?

Will your hospitality, etiquette and hosting efforts be an adversary or an ambassador for the 2012 Olympic Games? Call it what you will – be it etiquette, manners, politeness, upbringing or just good old fashioned hospitality.  I have grave concerns about our general level of kindness as the UK embarks on their biggest hosting role ever! Travelling on public transport day in and day out, I am continuously dismayed by the number of young (of which I cheekily count myself one), able bodies who do not give up their seat to the aged, the pregnant, the young families.  The number … Continue reading

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7 steps to developing natural leadership

Unnatural leadership Many motivational experts like to say that leaders are made, not born. I would argue the exact opposite – I believe we are all natural born leaders, but have been deprogrammed along the way. As children, we were natural leaders – always hungry and thirsty for knowledge, with an incredibly vivid imagination; we knew exactly what we wanted, were persistent and determined in getting what we wanted, and had the ability to motivate, inspire, and influence everyone around us. So why is this so difficult to do as adults? What happened? As children, over time, we got used … Continue reading

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Entrepreneurial Spirit

By Debra Ward I’m the Managing Director of MITIE’s Client Services front of house business, one of many of MITIE’s (Management Incentive Through Investment Equity) entrepreneurial start-up companies.  . My first entrepreneurial business was when I was only sixteen. I opened and operated a late night dog stand – Wolfy’s across from the busiest pub in town.  With a real understanding of the power of providing a solution at the exact moment desire occurs and my need to maximize output for level of input, I only opened on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights between 10pm and 3am during the peak … Continue reading

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Ordinary vs. Expected vs. Exceptional

Ordinary is all around you Ordinary is doing the bare minimum, simply surviving – or ‘getting by’.  Recently, I was talking with a religious leader – someone who runs a congregation. He made it clear, in our brief conversation, that on many days it’s just a job. A job like any other, you show up, you go through the motions, and you get paid. The reason I found this disturbing is that I think spiritual work should be real, not faked. Ask yourself: How often do you find yourself going through the motions? How content are you to be ordinary? … Continue reading

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Surviving open plan working

Imagine you are having a great day, you’re feeling positive and productive – the sun is shining through the window, you are whizzing through your emails, tasks are being completed, you share a joke with your colleague sitting beside you, a cup of tea and ideas with your boss opposite.  Then comes one of those bad days, when you didn’t get enough sleep, the phone doesn’t stop ringing, the paperwork is mounting up and you want to kill your otherwise lovely colleague beside you for pressing the keyboard so loudly! Can’t people see you are busy?  Ah, the joys of … Continue reading

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The art of handling complaints

Most people usually go into the hospitality and/or service industry because they generally enjoy meeting new people, creating relationships and making people happy. The well-known hospitality person is the one that feels rewarded by delivering excellent service and seeing a delighted guest. When we enter this business, however, nobody warns us that a significant proportion of our time will be spent not with delighted smiling guests, but trying to resolve problems and issues for unhappy ones.  As it’s National Smile Month, here are our solutions for turning an unhappy guest into a forever grateful, loyal and happy one. Here are … Continue reading

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Monkey management – helping you to help your team manage their own problems

Have you ever had a member of your team approach you with a problem with one of his/her colleagues and ask for your help? As a manager, you have a number of choices. Which is the right choice for you, for the supervisor, and for problematic employee? In a classic article in the Harvard Business Review in 1974, authors William Oncken, Jr, and Donald L. Wass offer a theoretical framework for seeing this situation in its true light and making the right decision. In the article “Who’s Got the Monkey?” the authors tell the tale of an overburdened manager who … Continue reading

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