The Management Blog

Tips & advice to help you improve your performance

 

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anger management

5 Reasons to Run an Anger Management Course

anger managementWe’ve talked about anger and the importance of properly managing it in the past. The truth is that everyone is going to get angry while at work at least once during the course of his career. Everyone will handle that anger differently but there are a few who will have no idea how to appropriately respond to anger – especially in a formal environment. While throwing things around or yelling may work in the privacy of your home, it simply doesn’t fly in the work environment. Learn More

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3 More Tips for Improving Your Technical Skills

Frustrated man punching laptop screenWhat’s currently holding you back in the workplace? Is it fear of failure? Fear of the lack of knowledge you imagine you have? Or is it a lack of technical ability you aren’t sure you can make up for?

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Jump Starting the Mentoring Program

Yup – we’re still planning and launching your mentoring program. Today I want to talk just a little bit about how to actually, formally start the mentoring plan. It’s actually very easy.

You’ve already decided who is going to be a mentor and who needs mentoring. Those in need of mentoring have filled out their self assessment forms to help determine what career path is best. Upper management has committed to supporting the program. So what’s next?

Start by letting the entire organisation know that you’re launching a mentoring program. Let everyone know – not just the ones you’ve chosen to receive initial mentoring. The more people who know about the program the more likely they are to support it and they may just become interested in participating later.

Let your mentees know which mentor they’ve been partnered with and then give them their first challenge. The mentors are not allowed to reach out to the mentees to set up their first appointments. The mentees must take control of their futures from the start and must take complete responsibility for setting up that meeting.

Make sure the mentors have copies of the self assessment sheets their mentees completed. The mentors will use those sheets along with the information they gather at the first meeting in order to begin making a plan.

Make sure the mentors and mentees are setting regular meeting schedules to track progress and make changes, if necessary. Don’t let them make excuses about not having time and don’t let them stall after one goal is met. Progress is a lifelong committment.

Setting up and launching a mentoring program is much more work than maintaining it once you have it off the ground. Don’t give up. Remain as committed to your team and their growth as you want each member to be to himself. Eventually you’ll begin to see great results!

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

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Preparing to Launch Your Mentoring Program

Last week we started talking about the importance of mentoring and the development of a mentoring plan for your organisation. Today I’d like to take a minute to talk about some of the things you need to do in order to evolve that plan from a simple idea into a reality.

The first thing you need to do is identify which individuals within your organization would make great mentors. Set up a training program so that they understand their goals as mentors and give them the tools they need to understand their new responsibilities as active mentors. Give them training and ongoing support so that they can meet the company’s mentoring goals.

The next step is to determien which employees need mentoring. You can do this by giving each person a self-assessment form to complete. The assessment form will help them to determine which career paths are actually best for them based on their skillsets and goals.

Finally, you need to get some sort of formal committment from upper management to support the mentoring program. Ask them to ensure there is money in the budget to support the program and ask them to make some sort of formal announcement that lets the employees know that they are supportive.

In many instances, the company HR group will set up a mentoring program but in other instances management is responsible for that task. Don’t panic if you find yourself responsible for setting up a mentoring plan for your group. After surveying the options and making a plan you’ll find the implementation of a good mentoring program is easier than you imagined it to be.

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

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Developing a Mentoring Plan

Now that you understand the importance of having a mentoring plan in place it’s time to start building one. In order for any mentoring plan to be successful two things have to happen. First, you employees need to realize they are responsible for their own levels of success. Second, you must have support from upper management in the development and implementation of your plan.

Once you have commitment and support you can start building a mentoring program for each of your employees. You have a choice. You as a manager can do the mentoring work or you can hire a third party who will focus on mentoring full-time. No matter what you choose to do you must make sure your organisation understands the following points:

  • Your employees need to be able to clearly identify the paths they want to take in their own careers.
  • Your employees must feel like a valuable part of the overall team.
  • Your organisation must be ready to spend time on training your employees so that they can reach their individual career goals.
  • Your organisation must be willing to look internally when it is time to hire for new positions rather than immediately looking to hire from the outside.
  • Your employees must feel as though the company cares about their futures.

Is your organisation willing to make a few changes in both mindset and procedure in order to help foster the growth of your current employees? They should. After all, it costs less to keep an employee than it does to hire a new one. Keep that in mind.

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

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Is the Art of Mentoring Dead?

You have a problem.

As a manager, you are responsible for making sure your employees have mentors. The problem you have is that your company may or may not support the mentoring process. It’s a shame, and it’s something you’ll have to deal with.

Last week we spend some time talking about coaching, which is great. But let’s not forget that coaching is completely different from mentoring, which is your ability to help someone grow in their immediate, professional career.

There are several reasons why companies today don’t focus on mentoring:

  • Downsizing has increased workloads and people feel as though they simply don’t have the time to devote to mentoring;
  • Upper management doesn’t understand that there really is a ROI when it comes to taking the time out to mentor others;
  • Managers aren’t properly trained as to how to become good mentors, likely because they haven’t received mentoring themselves; and
  • Some employers find mentoring useless because they think their employees will likely move on to another position or company eventually anyway.

I personally think these are terrible reasons to avoid mentoring. They all reflect one problem – a huge lack of committment to your company, to yourself, and to your employees. The same goes for your employees – they lack a committement to themselves. as well.

The truth is that you need to find the time and/or money for mentoring, whether you realize it or not. The benefits far outweigh the risks any day. And not having a mentoring program could prove detrimental to your team and your company as a whole.

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

Management Blog Call To Action

Businessman with both thumbs up

5 Tips To Ensure That Your Employees Are Safe In The Workplace

Businessman with both thumbs upIn the past we’ve talked about workplace safety but from the standpoint of employee burnout and, more recently, the importance of having a plan if your organisation is affected by a pandemic like the H1N1 virus. Today, though, I’d like to take a step back and look at workplace safety from a more general viewpoint. You may think that the fact you work in an office exempts you from workplace safety. You are, after all, simply sitting at a desk all day, right? Wrong. Employees trip and fall, burn themselves in the kitchen, and even suffer from health issues while at work.

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The 4 Fundamental Principles of Knowledge Management

In the past we’ve had several conversations about knowledge and how to manage the knowledge you have within your ogranization. We’ve talked about auditing information, storing information, and even making sure it gets back out to those who need it.

Today I want to talk about what I consider the four fundamental priniciples of knowledge management. They include capturing knowledge, validating knowledge, accessing knowledge, and then scaling that knowledge down. What do I mean?

The idea of capturing knowledge is pretty simple – in theory, anyway. Capturing knowledge is the process by which you determine what knowledge is available and then bring it together into some form of documentation. Knowledge that isn’t documented can’t be shared or used.

After you capture knowledge you have to validate it. Validating knowledge is about ensuring that the information you have is accurate and relevant. It won’t do you any good to have incorrect facts in your database and it’s just as bad to have completely outdated information as well.

After you capture and validate the knowledge within your organisation you have to create a way that makes it easy for everyone to access the pieces they need at any given time. They shouldn’t have to sort through an entire database. It needst to be indexed so that it can be easily found and used.

Scaling information is the process of making the information you have into something usable regardless of the geographic location of your business. If you are part of an international business, for example, your employees in New York City and Tokyo may need to access the same database. An employee in NYC can’t use one method of capturing, validating, and accessing if an employee in Tokyo is doing something different. If that happens, you’ll end up with a database of jumbled information.

How do your knowledge databases look right now. Could they use some improvement?

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

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