• L’esprit de l’escalier

    I recently emceed the convention for the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers.  Emceeing a convention definitely requires a specific skill set. And emceeing an event that includes a room full of your peers, and not just any peers, a roomful of professional speakers, requires, perhaps a thick skin.

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  • Learning to be Creative

    According to a study by Harvard Business professor Clayton

    Christensen, 80% of a person’s creativity is a learned or

    acquired skill. In other words, as I’ve been trying to tell

    you oh-so-often, creativity is not something you are just

    born with. It’s not magical. It’s not something either you

    have or don’t have. So, what are you doing to remind yourself

    and your team on a …

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  • Redundant? We Treat our Computers Better than our Employees!

    I recently heard yet another story of an employee telling me how she had been labelled as officially “redundant.” 

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  • Silliness at Work

    In Praise of a Little Silliness

    There’s an escalator at the Milwaukee convention center that

    has a button next to it that reads: Push to Play Polka. You can

    then enjoy listening to a nice polka as you ride the escalator.

    Reminds me a bit of the Volkswagen Fun Theory campaign I wrote

    about last year, where subway riders were enticed to opt for

    the stairs …

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  • Some Worrying Advice

    We all deal with sea gull colleagues who focus on the negative,

    but what about our own sea gull voices? Here’s a few random tips

    on dealing with those pesky negative thoughts that pop up in

    our own minds:

    – Set aside a specific time to worry about something (we

    did this in meetings, and called it the “whine and cheese”

    portion of the meeting)

    – Always …

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  • Start Earning Employee Loyalty Day One

    I had a front row seat, literally, to a very unprofessional dressing down of a brand new employee on a recent Air Canada flight.

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  • Humor at Work: Encouraging Conversations in the Workplace

    Given that 50% of all e-mails supposedly have a tonal issue

    (as in the recipient is unsure how to read your tone), coupled

    with a study by the University of Western Ontario which found

    that water cooler conversations at work improve productivity,

    what are you doing to encourage more face-to-face time, less

    face-to-computer time? How about a technology-free day or a

    technology-free hour once a day? …

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  • Bombing Joke Bombs for Former Politician

    Former cabinet minister and current Newfoundland and Labrador Lt.-Gov. John Crosby got roasted this week after making an offensive joke during a speech.

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  • Boost Creativity, Destroy Silos with Job Swap Days

    Southwest Airlines has a “Walk-a-Mile” program where employees

    can sign up to work a day in a totally different department.

    Many organizations have such programs, and find tremendous value

    in them.

    Not only do swap days help employees develop new skills and

    clarify different career path options, they also help break

    down barriers, build trust, foster new relationships, and

    improve communication. What’s not to love about this …

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  • Humor at Work: Fun Promotional Events Generate FREE Publicity!

    Here’s another example of a business capitalizing on a little

    creativity and fun to get some free publicity. The Lower

    Mainland Eccotique Spa is offering a “confess and de-stress”

    spa package for Vancouver Stanley Cup riot suspects. Any

    suspected hooligans can turn themselves in, get their

    fingerprints taken, and receive a relaxing spa treatment.

    Are any of the rioters going to take them up on the …

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