As a business speaker who speaks on the role of humor in leadership and business and the importance of building a strong workplace culture, I am continually amazed at the number of senior business people who still take themselves so seriously.Read More »
Great customer service isn’t about blindly smiling at the customer and pulling the string to recite a scripted response that sounds forced and unnatural (as hilariously mocked in an old Saturday Night Live skit with Helen Hunt and David Spade playing cynical flight attendants saying, “And bye-bye” to all the departing passengers).Read More »
A survey of senior leaders revealed a disconnect between what leaders think motivates employees vs. what actually motivates them. 95% of the leaders in the survey felt that “supporting progress” was the least most important factor in employee engagement, whereas all the research suggests the opposite is true: Supporting progress at work is one of the most important things a leader can do to motivate employees. (This is why many white collar workers who shift over to blue collar jobs report being much happier in their new jobs. As they often remark, “You can actually see what you’ve accomplished at the end of the work day – it’s tangible.”)Read More »
Here’s a list of just some of the fun, wacky, offbeat and not-so-wacky holidays and theme days for the month of May, 2017. Celebrating these, recognizing these theme days is a very simple way to bring a little fun and humor into your workplace. For some ideas on how to make use of some of these fun holidays go to: Ways to Celebrate Fun Holidays in the WorkplaceRead More »
Admit it. At some point in your career you’ve worked alongside someone who appears to do absolutely nothing all day.
You are aware they were hired, and sometimes you even know their job title, but when it comes to their actual tasks or accomplishments you have no idea. And sometimes neither do they.
Role clarity is critical. Not just for employees, but for an entire company. Employees with clearly defined roles are much more likely to be engaged with their work and their organization—which ultimately leads to stronger business results. If role clarity isn’t properly defined or communicated it can quickly escalate into misalignment of corporate objectives.Read More »
A friend of mine, a small business owner who does a fabulous job at constantly recognizing his contractors and often surprising them with bonus gifts, complained to me recently that an employee never thanked him after receiving a surprise bonus from him. Not even a quick “Cool, thanks!” e-mail from him. Nothing. Zippo! Nada!Read More »
At some point almost all of us have had that moment in the workplace where we wanted to strangle the person sitting next to us. Getting along with everyone isn’t always easy; especially when quirks and mannerisms get in the way.
Sesame Street’s Bert and Ernie are a classic example of how opposite personalities can effectively coexist in a small environment. They fought and bickered, yet they always found a way to remain friends.
Most likely in your workplace you have a Bert and Ernie. Or, maybe YOU are a Bert or Ernie. So what can we learn about conflict resolution from the colorful duo?Read More »
If you want a key, overarching value to become immersed into your workplace, such as safety, innovation or customer service, focus in on these three broad goals:
1. VISIBILITY: You need to remind people on an on-going, day-to-day basis of how important this value is so that it’s top of mind and it becomes second nature. Create a short, fun, catchy slogan and then use it everywhere: on posters, in your meeting rooms, on badges, on paycheck stubs, on e-mail signatures, on t-shirts, on stickers, on bumper stickers and on the back doors of washroom cubicles. Create a mascot that reminds people of the value. Make it the first thing people see when they fire up their computers.Read More »
Arlo Guthrie once famously said, “Just because you’re trying to save the world it doesn’t mean you can’t have any fun.”
In fact, if you are trying to save your small part of the world I’d go a step further by suggesting that adding a little fun will not only ease your stress associated with saving the world, it might just help you accomplish your mission as well.
Which is why I’m always happy to stumble upon examples of traditionally serious organizations taking themselves a tad less seriously. For example, as part of an annual tradition, Calgary aldermen broke out into a five-minute elastic band fight at a city council meeting, as a fun way to end their last meeting before adjourning for a month-long summer hiatus.Read More »
If you are familiar with the cult hit Office Space, you will easily recall the heartless micro-manager Bill Lumbergh. Lumbergh uses a leadership style of giving specific instructions and closely monitoring and overseeing the work of his employees. According to the Hershey and Blanchard ‘Telling’ leadership theory, people using this style use one way communication and often believe their employees are incapable of performing tasks given to them. While this leadership style may suit a variety of settings it can also be an employee’s worst nightmare.
With an abundance of Gen Y workers and a concern that social enterprises are too social, it’s understandable that workplace leaders are struggling for a balance on how to effectively manage employees. But if your employees are running off to the nearest coffee shop by 9am for opportunities to rant you might want to reconsider your management style.Read More »
“Just wanted to say “WOW!” Our group has had many speakers over the years, but none the likes of Mike Kerr.”
Richard Dansereau, President, NAPA Autopro BDG
“Michael Kerr is one of the best speakers I have seen. I highly recommend him!”
Veronica D. Bouvier, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Aspen Properties Ltd.
“Mike held the full attention of our senior management team for a full FOUR hour
presentation – no small accomplishment!”
Martine Rothblatt, CEO, United Therapeutics
“Our participants rated you as the speaker with the highest quality and relevance.”
Lana J. Larocque, Alberta Human Resources