• Is the Workplace Where Ideas Go to Die?


    In every survey my company has conducted, every survey I’ve done in leadership or innovation workshops, and most creativity surveys I’ve read, here are the top-5 places people say they come up with their light bulb moments, the top-5 places (in no particular order) everyone says inspiration strikes:

    In the shower
    While doing some sort of exercise
    In bed …

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  • Same Job, Different Customer Experience. Why?


    The next time you fly, eat out at a restaurant, or visit any business for that matter, take a few moments to watch the range of attitudes you see among the front line customer service staff. It can really be quite striking.

    Recently, for example, while flying to a speaking engagement I was struck by how completely different the flight attendants’ …

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  • Employee Engagement: Why Workers Really Disconnect From the Job

    photcopier, guy with head in

    Walking through the office hallway can make a boss feel a bit like the nerdy kid in the locker room. Just like jocks end cool conversations whenever there’s a nerd in sight, employees are constantly closing browser tabs and slamming laptops shut when their boss walks by. Whether they’re playing games, chatting on Facebook, or admiring cat memes, these workers …

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  • Workplace Lessons from Movies


    One of the questions I pose in my e-book, Inspiring Questions for Inspiring Workplaces, is: If your workplace was represented by a movie, what movie would it be and why?  Asking questions like this sometimes helps reveal some uncomfortable truths that people are sometimes otherwise reluctant to share.

    And speaking of movies…a lot of workplaces have business book clubs or …

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  • Workplace Recognition Is Everyone’s Opportunity and Responsibility

    Team motivating circle

    Guest Blog courtesy Sarah McVanel, Chief Recognition Officer, Greatness Magnified,

    Many people believe recognition is the leader’s job. Well, no wondering it’s not sustainable and most organizations’ recognition scores are through the floor! We’ve worked in industries (e.g., healthcare) where it’s not uncommon for a leader to have 100+ direct reports. Now, does this sound sustainable to you? Even …

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  • Are Your Vacations Sucking the Life Out of You?


    You know the old saying, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” isn’t always true. Sometimes what happens in Vegas follows you back to the office!  A European study found that 23% of vacationers noticed no difference in how rested they felt when they returned from their time away! None! An astounding 17% actually reported feeling worse after their vacation!

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  • How Humor Can Defuse an Argument


    Research shows that when people in a conflict situation laugh and find the humor in a situation, they are likely to shift from convergent thinking (believing there is only one possible solution) to divergent thinking (seeing other possibilities and ideas that might solve the conflict). Here are a few tips on how to use humor in a conflict situation to …

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  • What Are You Meeting For? Creative, Focused Workplace Meetings

    Penguins Meeting_1619038

    Single-focus meetings can be an effective way to dive deeper into an issue. When you have one central purpose, theme or goal tied to a meeting, chances are you’ll have a more effective meeting and achieve better results. Too often teams try to cram too many issues into their meetings, yet different topics often require different forums and different types …

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  • Employee Rewards & Recognition Study: It’s Not All About the Money


    I speak often about the “5 Ps” of workplace motivation that matter more than money: purpose, progress, pride, praise and passion. Money, in fact, isn’t always honey when it comes to motivating employees. What money is great at motivating people to do is this: look for work when they are unemployed, and show up at work week after week. …

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  • Customer Service: Would You Like a Side of Empathy With That?


    Do your employees understand the importance of expressing empathy to your customers when required?

    My wife and I just returned from a speaking trip in another country. The trip turned into an epic adventure involving delayed flights, missed connections, missing baggage, and yes, more delayed flights. Some of it was weather related, some issues were mechanical, sometimes we were waiting …

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