Everyone loves to swap tips about how to make an epic morning routine, but when it comes to implementation, there are a few easy whoopsies that are far too easy to make. Hitting the snooze button, starting your day from the bed and sacrificing your morning productivitytime for a late-night Netflix marathon are all potential ways to sabotage the potential your mornings have.
And potential, indeed. A growing body of research is finding that mornings are actually the most optimal time for you to ideate or be creative. A study in the Thinking & Reasoning Journal reported that the perceived-to-be least optimal times for thinking and creativity (such as first thing in the morning, when you’re groggy and still on your first cup of coffee) are actually the most optimal times. “Results showed consistently greater insight problem-solving performance during non-optimal times of day compared to optimal times of day,” the research stated.
So, the cost of making mistakes in your morning routine is quite high. Imagine the groundbreaking ideas for your business, next book, or even next family vacation that could surface in the light of the morning! Make sure you aren’t making the following mistakes that will cost you productivity and peace.
Mistake 1: Diving out of bed the second the alarm goes off
For sure, this mistake is done with good intentions — as a bit of a defense mechanism, if you will. If you force yourself to fly out of bed the moment you hear the dreaded alarm, you may be less likely to lay there and break into a mental argument about whether or not the morning commute can afford you an extra five minutes of snooze time. But, this drastic action disconnects you from your body immediately. A better alternative? Take just a few minutes to stretch and elongate your body as much as possible.
This concept is inspired by researcher Amy Cuddy, who coined the term “Power Pose.” When your body stretches out, you’ll actually feel more confident. In addition to this mood boost, a stretch first thing (even by putting your arms into a V shape, which Cuddy says boosts incredible happiness) increases your blood flow to all areas of your body.
After a few minutes of stretching, take your time getting out of bed and going about your immediate morning routine: making coffee, brushing your teeth and getting dressed. Then, consider doing the Power Pose again while standing up, or even during your morning shower!
A Lifestyle of Mobile Consumers Survey reported that 1 out of every 4 young adults checks their phones within one minute of waking up. It’s tempting, for sure — especially nowadays, when there is so much information on your email, social media and in your text messages. But Glenn Lundy, the host and founder of the incredibly popular #RiseandGrind podcast, says this is a major mistake.
“Neither your mind nor your body are ready for that type of stimulation first thing,” Lundy shared. “When you’re groggily waking up, it’s important to focus on presence and gratitude, rooting yourself in your own body through some morning movement and writing down your goals.” These pieces of advice are from his #TheMorning5 67 day challenge, which has been taken up by tens of thousands of individuals across the globe.
“Remember that there’s nothing on your phone that can’t wait for you,” Lundy explained. “And, you’ll be better equipped to handle any work crisis or exciting news when you’ve fully woken up and completed a healthy morning routine.”
Mistake 3: Sleeping in too late
Now, we aren’t telling you which hours you should or shouldn’t be sleeping, but consider this. If you know you’re tempted to check your phone first thing because you feel like you’re missing something, imagine how much that temptation will reside if you wake up earlier than most do. There’s something to this. A study by Amerisleep shared the stunning differences between early risers and late risers in productivity, salary, and general quality of life.
The study reported that “people who get themselves out of bed at the crack of dawn — yes, we’re talking about 4 am — responded they felt “highly productive” 71% of the time. Compare that to people who snooze until 11 am, the least likely group to report being productive. They’re only productive 36% of the time.”
This productivity also translates to money, as the study found that the early risers made an average of $15,000 more each year than the late sleepers.
Ultimately, what works best in your morning routine does come down to personal preference. This is an invitation to experiment. We all have the same 24 hours, and we all have a “morning routine,” whether it’s set in stone and followed habitually, or something that looks different every single day. Consider that the first hour of your day sets the tone for the rest of your day, and therefore, is likely the most important time to take full advantage of. Stretch out, keep that phone turned off, and consider rising earlier than you’re used to. The proof in both productivity and peace will reveal itself.
What are the morning routine mistakes that can derail your day? Many people start a new morning routine only to give up a few days later\. And others will watch videos about “successful routines,” but feel frustrated because these morning habits don’t match their day-to-day reality.
[…] Cruz then responded by suggesting that Twitter’s selective censorship, which includes routine “mistakes” being made only against conservatives, only further proves that the tech platform is now a content […]
[…] So, if you inherit a mutation in one of those genes, you still have some ability to repair any routine mistakes that are being made, but over time, you have less ability, and then, if you get a cancer that has a […]
5 Morning Routine Mistakes You Might Be Making There might be affiliate links on this page, which means we get a smal […] So, in this article, we will look at 5 morning routine mistakes that you might be making that can decrease the potential that this critical time of day has t […] Final Thoughts on Morning Routine Mistakes Do you find that you’re making any of the mistakes we listed in this article? If so, consider ho […]
[…] So, if you inherit a mutation in one of those genes, you still have some ability to repair any routine mistakes that are being made, but over time, you have less ability, and then, if you get a cancer that has a […]
We are all prone to making mistakes, even in areas we are experienced in. Approaching a task without the fear of making mistakes is the best attitude, and if and when they occur, they teach great lessons. For designers, some may be as simple as forgetting a small detail to bigger ones that would require a redo of the whole project. Mistakes should not prevent you from being creative and designing that system or software for your client or business. Instead, they present you with a great chance to improve your skills and career. Here are some of the most common mistakes that a designer is prone to make and how you can avoid them. Not Using Logs Logs are an essential part of every system. They oversee system events as well as storing user actions like passwords and file renaming. They act as watchtower lookouts alerting you when there’s a security breach in the system. Using logs when designing a system is therefore essential to ensure the security of the data and also spend more time-solving problems rather than looking for what is wrong. You might require the services of a log monitoring company for proper log management. Papertrail offers you an all-in-one cloud based log management solution to ensure your data is safe. Taking on Many Projects at the Same Time Having too much work to handle may mean more income and sometimes an overworked brain. The divided attention plus the tension of not meeting the deadlines may result in reduced output and a less than satisfied client. Imagine the quality of a project that you have given your focus. It will definitely improve your portfolio. Solution: Even though it means less income, learning to say no to work you can’t handle, is a virtue. You will have more time to concentrate on the tasks at hand and deliver quality work that can earn you referrals and recurrent clients. Unclear Responsibilities This happens especially when you are handling a group project. If there’s no project manager, then individual tasks often overlap, some tasks may be left unattended to, or worse still other team members may be less concerned about their roles. The client will notice the mistakes in the work delivered, and whether or not you did your part excellently, the mistakes lie on every team member since there were no guidelines and expectations laid down at the start. Solution: The best way to handle this would be clearly stating what is expected of every member of the team and tasks that each individual should handle by a project manager assigned to the project. According to the National Institute of Corrections, teams function more successfully when everyone understands their roles. That way, everyone will be answerable about their tasks. Lack of Proper Communication Some instructions sent by the client weren’t clear, but you did not seek clarification. Or it may be a question you should have asked during the meeting, but you did not because you feared been seen as dumb. The deadline draws near, and because you cannot avoid it anymore, you ask, and you are forced to correct parts you had already done or worse still, start the whole project again. Solution: You can avoid all these problems by communicating all the relevant information with the client. Ask for clarification where you don’t understand, sort out any uncertainties. It’s better to over-communicate and avoid mistakes than not communicate at all and end up with a load of errors. Working Alone Doing everything yourself is a recipe for making mistakes. You love to think you’re the solution to all the problems. You don’t ask someone to proofread your work or their insights, and you end up delivering work that is full of errors. Some of these details are very minute, and it’d take a different person to notice them. Solution: Design is a collaborative discipline. Learn to involve other people, look for a variety of perspectives, and different insights. Most importantly, learn to tame your ego. There is no harm in looking for an editor to correct the errors. Design is inclusive or else it won’t work out. Conclusion Learning how to avoid these mistakes or even fixing them may take some time and sometimes even more investment. But in the end, it will pay off in other forms like client retention, increased income, more referrals, an excellent reputation, and reduced reworks.
[…] the underlying significant errors and delays that her strategy had not addressed resulted in routine mistakes and failures being replicated at doubtless enormous cost to both council taxpayers and th […]
During the spring wave of the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, almost half of all employees in the UK were working from home at least some of the time. Whilst this was, of course, a scary time for everyone, there was also a sense of banding together, battening down the hatches and maybe even a little excitement at being able to work from home for the first time. Many adapted well to this strange new set-up. Kitchen tables became digital business hubs and spare bedrooms make-shift Zoom boardrooms.
But that was nearly 10 months ago, and the short-term shift to remote working has gradually become a more permanent, fundamental change in the way we work. And many are now realising the potential pitfalls.
Driven partly by the resurgence of the virus following the summer, and also by shifting attitudes of employers who are now realising they can trust their people to get the job done and remain productive without their watchful eye, remote working is here to stay in some capacity. A recently released survey from KPMG showed how 68 percent of CEOs plan on downsizing their offices to reflect this shift, and it seems that what was the most popular employee benefit of the last decade has been fast-tracked some 20 years in the space of 10 months.
That’s all well and good for those who have adjusted well or have properties large enough to accommodate a home office. But not everyone wants to be working from home. Some miss the buzz of the office and the social aspect of a workplace. Others may miss the ‘me time’ that a commute afforded them. Indeed, many new members of the work-from-home community may have contributed to the startling increase in divorce rates and break-ups.
Maybe that open-plan family room wasn’t such a good idea after all. Regardless of which camp you’re in, remote working in some form is here to stay. So how can you make a success of it? Here are some pointers from someone who’s been a member of the work-from-home clan for more than two years now.
Create a dedicated space.
The biggest change that new work-from-homers will need to make as a short-term solution shifts into a permanent new reality is creating a space in their home that’s sole purpose is work.
Kitchen tables, the sofa or cluttered box room just won’t cut it anymore. Even for organisations that switch to a 3-2-2 model or a variation of it (that’s three days in the office, two working remotely and two days off at the weekend), it’d be a struggle in terms of professional mindset to move from office to sofa and maintain the same attitude, output and productivity.
A dedicated space helps create a more seamless transition between workplace and home working. It will induce a professional mindset when you enter and aid focus. This dedicated space should ideally be cut off in some way from distractions and general home noises.
I don’t think I would have been nearly as productive over the last two years if every morning was a trip to the kitchen to turn the laptop on and there I stayed until 6 p.m. That close a proximity to the fridge certainly wouldn’t have helped things either!
Play around with the ambience.
One of the big benefits that many would have enjoyed when starting their first few remote workdays is having total control over the office environment. Radio station? Pick your favourite. Too warm? No need to negotiate opening a window with an always-cold coworker.
For long-term remote working, it’s good to play around with the ambience of your home office to find what works best.
As an example, I always find talk radio is a great backing track for the morning rush to clear the inbox and check on campaigns. But the post-lunch lull requires a lively Spotify playlist at full blast to maintain productivity.
Others find that certain tasks, such as a blog or technical writing, can be easier to focus on with softer background noise such as rain sounds or even a YouTube video of general office background noise (I kid you not, and I’ve tried it, and it does work on occasion).
Have a play around with lighting too. Natural light is always best for alertness and attention, whilst for those who like to work into the evenings, softer lamp light may be less harsh.
Finally, have a think about the temperature of your room. Whilst it’s very tempting to create a snug office that’s always warm, research has found that we tend to lose focus and productivity in rooms that are too warm. After all, if you’re a bit tired after a long drive, you don’t whack the heating on – you open the window for some fresh air.
Force yourself to stay connected.
Remote working presents a challenge to both extroverts and introverts.
For the former, not being surrounded by co-workers, a lack of “real” conversations or office socialising are a real problem when it comes to working from home. They thrive on these interactions and, as such, working alone at home can become frustrating and isolating.
On the flip side, for introverts who likely gravitate toward remote working more naturally, there is a danger of slipping into a mindset that starts to resent or even fear the Zoom or MS Teams call sound after a few hours of peace. For the more introverted, the office forced social interactions. Remote working can quickly see you start to actively avoid the group chats and digital socials.
Whichever camp you may be in – and it can be a bit of both depending on your mood and how fatigued you are – forcing yourself to stay connected is critical for long-term remote working.
And force yourself to stop working, too.
This is probably the biggest problem for the WFH community. For a workforce that was increasingly becoming an ‘always-on’ workforce, working from home has exacerbated the problem – especially when the makeshift workspace was the kitchen table or living room armchair.
But it’s critical for the long-term success of remote working to force yourself to STOP. If your organisation has still enforced a 9-5 or equivalent working hours – just work those hours then shut up shop for the day. If your employers are really forward-thinking and allow for both remote working and flexible hours too, then make sure you’re pacing yourself too.
A recent survey from The Office Group found that working longer hours was the biggest contributor to burnt-out millennials, alongside the inability to separate work and personal life.
Remember, you’re no good to anyone if you burn out from overworking. And it’s detrimental to your physical and mental health. So take a break, try to switch off when your day is done and resist the late-night email check.
The best ways I’ve found to deal with this is actually leaving the house when a particular working shift is done, either to walk the dog or a trip to the shop. It breaks the work mindset and helps you to switch off. Give it a try!
Modus Project Manager Samantha Park sits down with Co-Founder Jay Garcia to discuss how remote life differs at Modus from other organizations, share some of their techniques to make remote work easier, and talk about some of the challenges they’ve experienced working in a non-traditional environment. Ms. Park elaborates on the flexibility and independence that remote work provides, and discusses the expectation and reality of remote work, how to create a work-life balance, and tips for staying focused and on track. Modus is always on the lookout for people who want to work in an environment where they are challenged to grow and do great things with awesome people. Think you have what it takes to work with us? Check out our open positions at https://moduscreate.com/careers Subscribe to our YouTube channel, and turn on notifications! https://mdus.co/subscribe Sam on Social Media: Twitter – https://twitter.com/sparkps126 LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/samantham… Blog – https://moduscreate.com/blog Timestamps: 0:24 – Working remotely at Modus 0:50 – Going fully-remote for the first time 1:38 – Dealing with loneliness 2:08 – Expectation vs. reality of remote work 2:33 – Drawing a boundary between work and life 3:29 – The flexibility of remote work 4:14 – Building an office space at home 5:16 – Leading Modus while remote Modus Create is a disruptive consulting firm based on the model of an open-source team dedicated to making the best software on earth, and to leaving the world better than we found it. Together with our customers, we build products that empower people with breakthrough services and experience. Modus is always on the lookout for people who want to work in an environment where they are challenged to grow and do great things with awesome people. Think you have what it takes to work with us? Check us out at https://moduscreate.com/careers #workfromhome #remotework #employeeinterview #workculture #collaboration #collaborationtools #creativethinking
UAE Covid vaccine: 60% of education sector staff in Abu Dhabi get jab – Newshttp://www.khaleejtimes.com – Today[…] DON’T MISS: >> UAE Covid vaccination doses cross three million >> UAE minister urges teachers, education staff to get jab The Abu Dhab […] jab The Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (Adek) said on Saturday that it hosted a vaccination drive in collaboration with the Department of Health – Abu Dhabi and Abu Dhabi Public Health Centre […] Held between January 17 and 26, the vaccination drive was open to 222 private and charter schools throughout Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and the Al Dhafr […]6
2020-21 Field (or Remote) Research Assistant Opportunities | Stanford King Center on Global Development kingcenter.stanford.edu – Today[…] SPRING QUARTER Eradicating Cervical Cancer in West Africa (Nigeria) Through Enhanced HPV Vaccination by Employing Comic Book-Based Education (Cardinal Quarter eligible) The purpose of this researc […] The purpose of this research project is to develop and execute a comic book and media-based HPV vaccination education campaign in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country […] Given the COVID-19 pandemic, high quality education about vaccination and its safety and efficacy is even more important than ever, and this project may also investigate […]0
The Future of Convenience Store Design: openforbusiness.ab-net.us – Today[…] Someday, whether the result of vaccination or herd immunity, retailing will begin to look like its pre-pandemic self […]N/A
Some workers paid to get vaccinehttp://www.nwaonline.com – Today[…] to promote the vaccine among employees, including flexible work schedules, paid time off to visit a vaccination site and bonuses of up to $200 […] in part because of legal uncertainties involved with health screening questionnaires leading up to vaccination […]0
URMC email suggested ‘major donors’ could jump vaccine line | WXXI Newshttp://www.wxxinews.org – Today[…] At that moment in time, nobody knew how vaccination would roll out […] Leaders of the Monroe County Vaccination Task Force repeatedly stressed the need for equity, equal vaccine opportunity, and an absence o […] URMC joins a growing list of medical centers across the country that have either offered special vaccination opportunities for donors or flirted with the idea […]130
Vaccination Portal available for over 84 as of 1 Februaryhttp://www.europe.easybranches.com – TodayHOME CYPRUS VACCINATION PORTAL AVAILABLE FOR OVER 84 AS OF 1 FEBRUARY As part of the implementation of the National Vaccination Plan for COVID-19, the Ministry of Health announces that during the 23-29 January week, 7,7 Vaccination Portal available for over 84 as of 1 February Vaccination Portal available for over 84 as of 1 FebruaryVaccination Portal available for over 84 as of […] Consequently, the number of people who have completed their vaccination is 5,551. As of Monday, 1 February, the Vaccination Portal will be available for appointments for people over the age of 84 who have not bee […]0
How Influencers, Celebrities, and FOMO Can Win Over Vaccine Skeptics hbswk.hbs.edu – Today[…] struggled, while many others, such as Australia, Japan, and South Korea, have not even begun their vaccination efforts […] To be sure, the stakes for COVID-19 vaccination are much greater than those for high technology products […] can serve as micro-influencers to other segments by posting pictures on social media of their vaccination cards or themselves actually getting the shot […]2
Getting SA vaccine readyhttp://www.iol.co.za – Today[…] health, Milani Wolmarans, explained that an online database system has been created to monitor the vaccination process […] The system will see healthcare workers being enrolled for the vaccination and application process […] this is done the health worker will receive an SMS and will go with their ID and medical aid to the vaccination centre […]1
Cervical Cancer wellness.metropolisindia.com – Today[…] Other preventive measures are cervical cancer vaccination, practicing safe sex and quit smoking […]N/A
COVID-19 vaccine FAQshttp://www.barnsleyccg.nhs.uk – Today[…] For more information about the COVID-19 vaccination visit www.nhs.uk/covidvaccine Last updated: 26/01/21 How will I be invited for my vaccination? Your GP practice will contact you by telephone or the NHS will contact you by a letter in the post […] You will be instructed which site you need to visit for you vaccination when you are contacted by the NHS. I have been invited to a large vaccination centre but I can’t travel there. Can I wait to have my vaccine in Barnsley? Yes. As more vaccination services become available, you may be invited to one that is outside Barnsley […]N/A
Here are some highlights from Amy Landino‘s appearance on Agorapulse’s weekly Facebook Live show. You can also view the entire show if you like (and which we recommend!).
Onward to the productivity tips!
1. Broaden Your Creativity
“See what you can make fly, so that you can observe the results of it and then any success that you have, duplicate that or figure out what that looks like.”
Establish a steady (not frantic) pace
“When you have a content goal, and let’s say it’s to have a weekly show on YouTube, which is industry standard. If you started weekly, you’re doing really well. As a matter of fact, YouTube would tell you to start with once a week. Don’t do more than that!”
Try new things
“I like to compare it to carpool karaoke on the set. On these night shows that we start to see on YouTube that work, it’s because you test them on the show. That’s their testing ground, and then what ends up flying ends up being their huge success online.
“That could also be true for the actual show itself, like what they become known for …
“Maybe you become known for a segment, but you have to build that segment out.”
2. Write Out Everything
“The procedure for that for me is we have to write everything.”
“Obviously, everything has to be documented, from all the talking points that we need and any other basis we have to cover it or sponsor it or stuff like that.
“And then we’re reverse-engineering what the deadlines are. When is the video to go out? When does it need to go to certain approvals? What days are those approvals?When do you film? When do you edit?
“Everything is just a reverse-engineering of a deadline.”
3. Schedule, Schedule, Schedule
Reverse engineer deadlines to avoid feeling overwhelmed
“And so I do like to look at what are all the deadlines for a month and then reverse engineer the filming. If I can do at least two videos in one day to make the most of hair and makeup, it pays off for me because I don’t have to go crazy and get ready to film so many times in a month.
“It’s amazing how even a video that’s very well-planned, sometimes just when it’s made too far in advance, even on my channel, it just doesn’t fly the same way as it would if it was like this idea that we came up with and got out like traditional YouTube culture.
Give yourself enough time
“But you do need to give yourself enough time to create it.
“So maybe not looking too far in advance but looking at a monthly level or from a monthly viewpoint of what are we trying to get done and when are we going to do it, especially if you’re hiring people to get this kind of stuff done for you.
“You’re definitely going to want to schedule that as well. So it’s pretty obvious that you would then have to schedule whatever you have to do as it pertains to that content.
“But going on a week to week basis with those videos would be really difficult if you’re thinking, we’re going to do this again, I gotta do this, again, I gotta do this.
“Again, if you can kind of knock out for marketing and content creation, just a certain period of time in that month, and then all the other logistics to follow, just have to get done in time for the deadline, you’re in pretty good shape.
“The reality is everybody thinks that their problems are different from everybody. We all think our problems are special and different. But when you really break it down, we’re all talking about the same issues.”
6. Give Yourself at Least 15 Minutes Every Morning
“At least allocate 15 minutes to start your day on your terms. You’re going to be better off for the rest of the world because they’re going to be pulling at you for the rest of the day.
“So I’m unbelievably passionate about having my ‘me time’ in the morning. I’m an introvert; I just need that moment because I know that I have to be on the rest of the day. It’s just a part of the gig. And so I take that for myself.
“You just have to find what works for you and that was probably the final passion behind this book was everything online is really outlining what you should be doing in the morning. I don’t like the word ‘should.’ I shut down when people save them.
“And so to me, it’s what works for you, and just covering the bases.
“Get that little bit of time it might just take for you to feel like you’re up for that day, and make the work around what your season of life is at that moment.”
The most successful and wealthiest people all practice the habits I am about to share with you on a daily basis. Adding these daily success habits to your own routine will contribute greatly to your achievement. http://bit.ly/2wHVsEs If you want to set yourself up for success, you must create an effective to-do list. Use my ABCDE Method Checklist to plan your days and weeks more efficiently than ever before. Click the link above to download my ultimate prioritization tool for free. “There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do the most important thing.” @BrianTracy (Click to Tweet: http://ctt.ec/9bdah) ___________________ Learn more: Subscribe to my channel for free offers, tips and more! YouTube: http://ow.ly/ScHSb Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BrianTracyPage Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/BrianTracy Google+: +BrianTracyOfficialPage Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/BrianTracy Instagram: @TheBrianTracy Blog: http://bit.ly/1rc4hlg
Workingmums.co.uk hosted two employer workshops on how empathy can be used to create a more engaged, productive workforce in November led by Oliver Hansard and Joss Mathieson from Catalyst Thinking Partners.
Opening the first workshop, Hansard said that, in a world where we are in control of so little that is going on, empathy is a key skill. It is no use having technical ability without having the skills to unlock people’s potential, he stated. He argued that empathy is generative rather than passive, meaning that it guides people’s actions.
Mathieson said Covid has shown the importance of engagement and regular communication and added that empathy is crucial for dealing with a culture of change. If change is handled badly and with a lack of empathy, it can knock people sideways for months, he said. People’s attitude to change is deeply personal, he added, so we need to understand what it means to individuals to ensure people are able to deal with it effectively.
Hansard and Mathieson asked what people understood by the term empathy. Empathy is not only about understanding another person’s perspective, but it guides what actions should be taken and what support might be required. In volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous times we also need VUCA leadership is required, said Hansard and Mathieson, that is, leadership focused on being Valiant, Understanding, Compassionate and Authentic:
– Valiance is about not being afraid to show that you don’t know everything, to ask what others think and to do the right thing; – Understanding is about understanding how others feel; – Compassion is about being consistently thoughtful, even in challenging circumstances; – Authenticity is about being genuine and honest and not being afraid to show vulnerability, for instance, to talk about what it is really like living through this pandemic.
Hansard and Mathieson pointed out that there is often a discrepancy between how empathetic CEOs think they and their company are versus what employees perceive. A recent workplace empathy survey from Businesssolver showed, for instance, that 68% of CEOs think their companies are empathetic, compared to 48% of employees, and that 76% of employees think empathy leads to greater productivity compared to 52% of CEOs. Moreover, 70% of employees think greater empathy results in lower staff turnover, compared to just 40% of CEOs.
In their Empathy Manifesto, Hansard and Mathieson have called for a cultural shift around empathy and referred to how Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, had put empathy at the core of innovation to understand the different needs of customers and appreciate different perspectives. Microsoft has shifted from a ‘know it all’ culture to ‘learn it all’ as a result.
As a framework, Hansard and Mathieson outlined their Empathy Compass which has empathy at the centre, surrounded by self, team, organisation and customer. They said empathy for yourself is your “North Star”. By understanding how you are feeling, you can be more empathetic to others and more resilient. They emphasised the importance of finding time for yourself amid family and work demands.
In a team setting, empathy involves listening to others and being prepared to act on what they say, being honest rather than hiding bad news and taking the group with you. It can involve ensuring people take time out regularly to care for others in the team, testing things out and listening to feedback.
When it comes to customers, empathy is about listening to their needs and adjusting products or services accordingly, whether they are internal or external clients. It is an opportunity to show you care and value customers and it drives loyalty.
There are two dimensions to organisational empathy – top down empathy demonstrated by senior managers and bottom up empathy that builds from the sum of other acts of empathy – teams, customers and self.
Hansard and Mathieson discussed how to attract and hire empathetic candidates and said it is about having the right behavioural frameworks and asking candidates at interview about what they think empathy is and requesting that they give examples of how they have demonstrated this. Also, they can be asked about their personal values and the employer can assess the cultural fit against their organisational values, if they have been clearly defined.
Participants then discussed examples of empathetic leadership in their own organisations, including weekly videos from CEOs about the need for everyone to take care of themselves; leaders who are mental health first aiders; role models and influencers who generate empathy; leader drop-in sessions; leaders who give people permission to take time out; a focus on domestic abuse; employee audits that ensure employers know about the different problems affecting different groups; treating employees like consumers; and a focus on adaptability to change and on how an empathetic culture supports this.
Mathieson said it is important to be aware that different cultural contexts need to be taken into account and that a different empathetic approach may be needed for different stages of the pandemic. Hansard said listening needs to become an organisational habit as does demonstrating that what is being said is being taken on board. Mathieson said employers need to listen more than they talk.
In the second workshop, participants explored empathetic listening or what one participant called “listening hard”. They focused on the reciprocal empathetic relationship between employer and employee and the importance of creating an environment of trust where employees feel they can be open and honest and that what they say will be acted upon. There was also a discussion on how an empathetic culture could boost understanding of customer needs and help deliver better services. Better listening can sometimes be enough to push things forward in itself if people feel they are being heard.
Hansard said there are three types of empathy: cognitive empathy or empathy by thought – the ability to see another’s perspective; emotional empathy – the ability to feel another’s emotions; and generative empathy – which generates empathy in others and leads to action, if not by the listener then by others. Receiving and witnessing empathy has a profound impact and generates empathy for others.
They outlined their ACORN method of generative empathy which is based on:
Attention – listening with full attention and not imposing your own perspective;
Curiosity – exploring what the other person is thinking or feeling and checking that you have heard and understood correctly;
Observation – noticing all signals, including body language and emotions
Reflection – being a mirror and testing what people are saying, for instance, stating: ‘I think what you are saying is…’ This can be helpful even if you get it wrong as it might make the person think about the issue in a different way if done well; and
Next steps – working together to identify action for you and for them.
Participants then took part in an empathy breakout session to try the ACORN method for themselves, working in trios where one person shared a challenge or problem, one person listened to another and another observed.
Reflecting afterwards, some participants described the difficulty of letting go of the feeling that they needed to find a solution to people’s problems rather than just reflect them back and find a supportive way forward. Mathieson said intentional listening has to be practised regularly and developed “as a muscle”. This is particularly important for building resilient organisations, promoting inclusion and helping people to navigate agility and change.
Hansard and Mathieson have developed a six-month empathy training programme for leaders which shows significant boosts in leaders’ ability to listen and teams’ ability to behave empathetically as well as increased trust. The leaders who have taken part say it is transformative, helping teams feel more connected and able to be more honest and open.
If you would like to know more about the Empathy Manifesto and the work Hansard and Mathieson do, please contact them on email@example.com/ www.hansardcoaching.com and firstname.lastname@example.org/www.changeoasis.com.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) conducted a study to determine which countries offered their workers the best balance between personal life and work life . The researchers considered a number of factors including average work hours , personal time, and number of working moms. In the end, the Netherlands took first place with a rating of 9.3 out of 10, while several countries in America ended up presenting a very bad rating.
Not being able to balance work and life can put your health at risk. In fact, many studies have shown that people who work long hours and do not have time for themselves have a 33 percent greater chance of having a heart attack, and a 13 percent greater risk of cardiovascular disease. Fortunately, there are many ways to balance your personal and business life to protect your health .
Put into practice the following tips that will change your life:
1. Get rid of unnecessary activities
Many entrepreneurs work longer hours than they should because they are wasting their time on unnecessary or low-value activities. Find out if this is your problem by recording every minute of your time for a few days. Then review what you wrote down and identify the activities that do not add value.
Eliminate distractions like checking social media or taking personal calls while you work. These activities may not take you more than a couple of minutes, but they add up. You should also analyze if you are wasting a lot of time on activities that someone else could do. For example, if you are wasting time going to the supermarket, maybe you could hire someone to do it or order the supermarket at home.
Getting the most out of every minute of the day is essential to find the balance between work and personal life. By cutting back on non-value-added activities like distractions and errands, you can work fewer hours and take care of your health.
2. Schedule social activities on a recurring basis
Studies have shown that having an active social life is important for health. People who isolate themselves from others increase their chances of dying sooner by fifty percent. But making time for social activities can be tricky, especially when you’re trying to grow a business. One way to overcome this is by scheduling recurring social activities with your closest friends.
For example, plan to have one dinner a month with a group of friends. Put this activity on your calendar, and now you can organize your work schedule around dinner, and not the other way around. This strategy is effective because it forces you to make time to disconnect and have fun with your friends. Think of this social activity as a meeting with an important client, something you can’t cancel regardless of how busy you are.
3. Learn healthy ways to cope with stress
Being an entrepreneur is stressful. No matter how many activities you cut off your list or how often you see your friends, you can’t escape stress. Chronic stress has a negative impact on your mind and body, which can lead to dangerous health conditions such as cardiovascular disease or high blood pressure. But this does not mean that living under stress will shorten your life expectancy. The key to finding a balance between work and health is learning to manage stress.
Get into the habit of taking a step back from stressful situations, just for a few moments to calm down and collect your thoughts. For example, let’s say a client sends you an email demanding something almost impossible. If you feel like your heart is racing and your blood is starting to spike everywhere, get up from the computer and take a walk, even through your office. If you can go for a walk, do it to calm the thoughts that were accumulating in your head. Going for a walk, even for a few minutes, reduces stress and brings clarity to the head.
Dr. Michael Galitzer, author and physician, recommends entrepreneurs to practice deep breathing to relieve stress. Put one hand on your stomach and one on your chest. Begin to breathe deeply from the abdomen to fill your lungs with air. As you slowly breathe in and out, focus on how your abdomen rises and falls. This will make you focus on something other than what is causing you stress and it will be easier to calm you down. Inhale for a count of four, hold the breath for another four seconds, and then exhale for a count of four. Using one of these methods to deal with stress can calm your mind so that you are better prepared to handle the situation that stressed you out.
As an entrepreneur, you are most likely not used to putting yourself first. But it is important to understand that doing so does not mean putting your business aside. By following these tips, you can find the perfect balance between your work and your health, and be more successful than ever in the business world.