Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Importance of *expletive* Intermissions

It's the Cabaret Festival in Adelaide, and last night we went along to support a friend's show - you know one of those things where it's probably not your cup of tea, but you want to see your people succeed. Well within the first 5 minutes, it was so NOT my cup of tea, I had checked out mentally and couldn't make eye contact with the one-woman show. It was making me cringe, I didn't want to be there, I was counting down the minutes until it ended.


And then 1hr 25min into the show, without a break, the one-woman show was singing an upbeat song supposedly from our shared childhoods (I'd never heard of it, and it would have been played on a radio station I would have switched off). And during the song, she spied little ol' me and my absolute fascination with the zip on my purse. And she walked right to me and sang right to me and made eye contact right to me. And I made some godawful attempt at smiling back, but had murder in my eyes, because all I wanted was for the goddamn show to be over.


Sometimes people just don't want to sing the same song you're singing - sometimes folks would rather cut off their arms than sway a lighter to your tune. Last night I felt the most intense desire to be elsewhere and was totally trapped. There was no way I could fumble my way towards an exit without interrupting the entire performance. I didn't know how to get out, I didn't know when I could get out. It made me hate that goddamn show even more.


So if you're suddenly singing a now song in your organisation, and you're expecting employees to join the kumbaya circle, here are two things I learnt from last night:

1. Don't bother with the folks who have checked out. Last night I was OUT, and I was not even remotely interested in being brought in. I was looking at my feet, my purse, people in the audience, the stage floor - anything but that horrible show. I even winced a few times at the songs... Could my body language have been any clearer? So when the one-woman show tried to pull me back in by singing at me, it was just a dumb waste of energy for both of us. She should have sung to someone who was loving it, and given them the show they were cheering for.


2. For the love of all things good, give people the path and the opportunity to exit. Last night I was praying for an intermission, but it never came. Imagine how much pain could have been prevented if I could have just left half way through? I'm pretty certain my bad energy was radiating throughout the place, and how unfortunate is that for an intimate cabaret setting? You would have wanted me out, I wanted to be out. Employees who are hating it want out. Show them the way out.


I suppose my conclusion from the ordeal is the importance of the flipside to change management. When you are creating change, and asking people to join in a new song and dance, it's just as important to focus on those who have said "hell no" to it. There is a seriously slim chance they're going to change their minds if they have honestly checked out. So leaders have got to be fair to them, and the rest of the team exposed to that 'checked out' energy, and give them an intermission. Inter-mission. You know, a checkpoint within the mission to let someone off the bus. Intermissions are really *expletive* important.


They're also a great opportunity to get more delicious snacks, and I'm always heartily in favour of that.


Cheers,
Sarah

Btw, if you're wondering how I can be employed in HR, and write about HR - here's my explanation.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

You're Better than Samsung

I will never buy a product that needs to shit on the competition to advertise itself.

That's probably why I find Samsung phones unattractive.



And why I change the channel every time this Ford Territory MkII ad comes on:


It just makes me cringe at all the ugly traits coming through... insecurity... meanness... I don't know, why is it necessary to shit on other products and people to sell ourselves?

If that's the territory you are veering into with anything you are doing, you are playing a losing game. Because it's all about how you perceive yourself: if you are saying the other people are worse, that's not saying you are the best. I think that's a distinction that can often get lost.

Ultimately, you sell by convincing people you are what they want. And really, what do people want - something that's comparatively better than something that's been shat all over, or the best?

I believe everyone of us has the possibility of being the best in our own way. Do you believe that about yourself?


Cheers,
Sarah

Btw, if you're wondering how I can be employed in HR, and write about HR - here's my explanation.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Be The Asshole Who Says It

Those special relationships at work aren't doing anyone favours.

Think of that team mate that's really liked, but needs extra guidance with 'careful cotton gloves'- they're not getting the real picture. And that respected colleague who can't print a document, and isn't improving despite an extra 20 minutes of daily help - not getting it either.

Nobody will intuitively know the truth about their incompetence if everything is signalling that they're ok.

And that's not fair on them.


They need to know about resilience, taking feedback, using initiative and meeting expectations. They need to know about keeping relevant skills, remaining employable, and continuous learning.

Because when change happens - and it inevitably will - the truth will come out and totally blindside them.

And just because I like to harp on to drive my point home, what about this for a kicker? "Research has shown that a teacher's expectations can raise or lower a student's IQ score, that a mother's expectations influences the drinking behavior of her middle schooler, that military trainers' expectations can literally make a soldier run faster or slower." 

So if you want to change your life, listen to this podcast, because it will inspire you to never expect anything but the best from anyone ever again. I'm expecting you to be wowed.


Cheers,
Sarah

Btw, if you're wondering how I can be employed in HR, and write about HR - here's my explanation.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...