Achieve Your Dreams - eBook to help plan your year

This is such a great time to reflect on what's happened; to review the past 12 months and to start planning your year. 

I've put together an ebook to help you do that in just 5 steps.

Try it!  It's a fun process, it's quick and it really works.

This is a present from me to all my clients and friends.  Please feel free to share it with your friends and colleagues. 

One thing I've noticed when I share some of these ideas in motivational talks is how many young people come up to me afterwards to talk about this process.  In a messy and confusing world it can help them to prioritise and focus.  So if you have young adults in your life, please share this with them.  

Click on the link below to download the ebook.

Achieve Your Dreams

More media events

More busy times in the media.  Last Friday I was invited onto the SAfm morning show.  The topic was leadership in times of crisis and we had a great talk about how business needs to invest in people and specifically in leadership even during times of crises.  

Today I went to Cape Town to record a show with Sbu Leope for Kicking Doors, a great inspirational evening show aimed at young high earning entrepreneurs.  I was talking about coaching and specifically what coaching can do for leaders.  Sbu was a great interviewer, high energy and really engaged.  It's tough to keep the same energy when you are sitting all alone in a cold studio in Cape Town and he's having great fun with his other guest in the studio in Johannesburg but it was fun trying!.

Looking forward to seeing you it works out and I'll post the link to the show here after it airs next week.  2030 on CNC Africa on Tuesday 26 July 2016.

Busy Monday! SAfm Interview and Business Day Opinion piece published

A good Monday.  Thanks to my fabulous PR guru, who I cannot name because I coach her confidentially, I've just done an interview on how women can stretch money in tight times and grow themselves to prepare for better times with Shado Twala on SAfm's Otherwise lunchtime show.

Next, Business Day decided to link my opinion piece on investment in growing business leaders in times of crisis to the Brexit crisis and published it on their website today.


Media Update

We have officially launched the business and the interest from media and business here in South Africa has been terrific.  This has been a busy week!

On Wednesday evening I did an interview on leadership with Masechaba Ndlovu at Power FM.  Really topical subject for South Africa and lots of listeners called in with some great questions.

On Thursday morning I gave a talk on Leadership and Transformational change to the Vistage CEO Group in Cape Town.  They really engaged with the subject and afterwards we had a terrific discussion around leadership challenges and behaviours here in South Africa.  Some are global challenges, some are uniquely South African!

Next Monday I'll be talking to Shado Twala on the SAFM Otherwise Show - really looking forward to that one, SAFM has a huge audience!



Smart Thinking Executive: Clarity

I met Juliette through a formal assessment process and when we did the feedback session, I told her that she didn’t have the best communication skills. She’s a very bright executive, an economist with strong academics but when she tried to explain her thinking or give examples she was unusually hard to follow.

She wasn’t happy with the feedback, and that could be because I found it hard to put across exactly what the problem was. She told me she’d always had feedback that her communication skills were excellent. Yet when she was giving examples of how she set about her work, I literally could not understand what she was saying.

The Importance of Clarity

The problem is that if you can’t state clearly what you’ve done, it’s unlikely that you are going to explain clearly to a team what you need them to do. That’s why communication skills are so important for senior leaders. This executive reported directly to the CEO in a large organisation, so she played a critical role in the business.

Many months later, after we had worked together and built a solid coaching relationship, she asked if she could give me feedback. ‘Of course’ I said.

“You’ve been great, but can I just say that I was really gutted when you told me I had a problem with communication skills. Especially because you couldn’t really explain what the problem was.  So I talked to a friend who's a psychologist and he helped me to understand it better.”

Parallel Processing and Clarity

He described it as parallel processing. You are making a point, but as you do so, your mind has already moved onto something else – so you dart ahead and start talking about that. Meaning to revert to the original topic, but not always getting back to it. Lots of people do it, interrupting themselves and not finishing a thought, or making a clear point. It makes them hard to understand and it’s very irritating when you engage with them. If you’ve ever been the designated driver at a particularly rowdy dinner party you’ll have seen plenty of the kind of communication behaviour we are describing.

Juliette’s psychologist friend encouraged her to still that busy voice inside her head, the one that jumps around and instead to focus on what she was saying and to force herself to complete a point before moving onto the next one. The advice sounds simple and she tells me that it’s made a huge difference. So much so that she now recognises this tendency in others; which makes her redouble her efforts to keep her remarks concise and to the point when discussing with work colleagues.

The skills involved are focus and mindfulness; if you need to work in this area of communication, it is likely that you might need to thing about focus and mindfulness as well. More on those in future articles.