How to use mindfulness to support your people during changing times

mindful walking

Mindfulness can be done anytime, during a walk is ideal

Meditation is now being used to help people deal with the stress change in the workplace brings. Called ‘Mindfulness’, it can be used for a short time every day – with big results.

Anyone can learn Mindfulness. It’s simple yet challenging. You can do it anywhere, at any time, and the results have been shown to be life changing.

To recap, this form of meditation can be done anywhere to help stop you becoming engulfed by the mind’s emotional ‘chatter’, so it doesn’t control you.

Here are some ideas on how to be mindful:

It can be helpful to pick a particular time – your journey to and from work or during a lunchtime walk – to actively notice your thoughts, feelings and bodily sensations, and the world around you. Try doing this today: find a new lunch spot or sit in a different seat when travelling to work. Now examine your surroundings, such as the air moving past you; or look at an item in detail (a raisin, a sweet wrapper).

Be mindful during a walk

Be mindful during a walk

Examples could include:

  1. Sensations – the food you are eating, the air moving past your body as you walk, your breathing…
  2. Colour
  3. Sound
  4. Smell
  5. Taste

Now, notice the chatter going on in your mind. Observe your thoughts as they float past. Don’t try to change them or debate them, or judge them – just observe them. Practice helps, so this ‘chatter’ doesn’t become yet another mental event that controls you.

Does this sound like a small thing to you? Yes, it is, but it’s straightforward too. However, it is proven to help us engage more in the everyday activities we often bypass as we are often on autopilot. In this way, we gain a fresh view of the world – and our place in it.

When to use it:

Whenever you can and especially when you experience several moments that see you dwelling on unsettling, possibly distressing, memories – the kind that involves you reliving the event. You may find it helps to silently name these thoughts and feelings as they emerge. For example: “I am worrying”; “I’m not good enough to do this”.

Please get in touch with Marjorie Raymond, on 07779 345 499, or email m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk, if you would like to talk about Mindfulness.

My next blog post will look in detail at ACT, Mindfulness’ relative, and how it has been used to help people and organisations during times of change – and as an ongoing part of employee wellbeing and engagement activities. ACT stand for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

Reach us at 07779 345 499, m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

Marjorie Raymond

Marjorie Raymond

T: 07779 345 499

E: m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

We have experience in developing senior managers and their team members – both on an individual and team level – so they can develop practical approaches that encourage positive, constructive behaviour. This, in turn, leads to the development of positive beliefs and values. We are ready work with you, to help you get the best out of your people.

Here are some examples of approaches that can be used and tailored to your individual needs:

  • Support if you are being bullied, or have a member of your organisation who has made a bullying complaint
  • Mediation, to address workplace conflict
  • Personal development activities
  • Individual and group coaching…Coaching – a powerful way of developing people
  • Psychometric assessment, which can identify strengths as well as derailing behaviours and also include 360 degree feedback
  • Structured module for understanding the psychological contracts in your organisation, both at an individual or team level
  • Straight Talking: …Straight Talking create change through conversations
  • Special projects, secondments and assignments

 

 

 

 

Coaching your call centre people can increase sales by 10 per cent

Coaching frontline call centre people inceases producitivity and engagement

Coaching your call centre people can increase sales by 10%

Call centre supervisors who coach their staff not only improve productivity and employee engagement but convert this into strong bottom line results – typically a 10 per cent increase in sales and a 25 per cent rise in customer compliments.

That’s right compliments – not complaints.

A recent study found a clear productivity benefit – a saving of one second on each call – as a direct result of coaching.1 And, in my experience, the strong bottom line results mentioned above are not uncommon.

In the call centre world, time spent talking to customers is sensitive. It has to be gauged just right. Every second really does count. Each call has to be judged just right – neither too long nor too short. Eliminating verbal clutter, so as to reduce call time, is a prized achievement. As the research study mentioned above showed, reducing call time by just one second enhances the customer’s experience, making for real quality interaction, and increases productivity.

But, sometimes supervisors were unwilling to coach. This usually happens when they haven’t been encouraged to:

  • advance their coaching skills
  • coach staff, rather than concentrate on administration
  • develop their confidence

From an effectiveness and an efficiency point of view, it makes sense to equip supervisors to coach their staff.

Even when organisational hierarchies are flattening, the evidence indicates there is a need for supervisors to play a central role in employee development – and in performance management too.

Supervisors really are the ideal people to deliver call centre training.

1 Liu, A and Batt, R (2010). How supervisors influence performance: a multi-level study of coaching and group management in technology-mediated services. Personnel Psychology, 63, pp265–298. 

Reach us at 07779 345 499, m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

Marjorie Raymond

Marjorie Raymond

T: 07779 345 499

E: m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

We have experience in developing senior managers and their team members – both on an individual and team level – so they can develop practical approaches that encourage positive, constructive behaviour. This, in turn, leads to the development of positive beliefs and values. We are ready work with you, to help you get the best out of your people.

Here are some examples of approaches that can be used and tailored to your individual needs:

  • Individual and group coaching…Coaching – a powerful way of developing people
  • Personal development activities
  • Special projects, secondments and assignments
  • Mediation, to address workplace conflict
  • Psychometric assessment, which can identify strengths as well as derailing behaviours and also include 360 degree feedback
  • Structured module for understanding the psychological contracts in your organisation, both at an individual or team level
  • Straight Talking: …Straight Talking create change through conversations

How to get people to behave the way you want in the workplace

You can motivate people – in other words, reward work well done

You can motivate people – in other words, reward work well done

Coaching can help people chose alternative behaviours. But for managers to make good coaches for team members they need to ‘walk the talk’.

However, they need first need to understand the value of ‘walking the talk’, and this involves open communication and follow-through, and treating others as you would like to be treated yourself.

Here’s the good, the bad and the ugly of workplace feedback – what works, and what really doesn’t:

  • You can motivate people – in other words, reward work well done
  • You can praise people. For example, if you have a lazy team member, you can require that tasks be completed in a certain time-frame and to a certain quality standard, and then provide positive feedback when the tasks are completed successfully
  • You could use negative reinforcement – constantly ask or tell a person to do something, and scold too
  • You could also punish the person. This is a firm favourite – it usually fails

To help get it right, use the table below. The ‘hot’ colours show what works best, the cool colours, featuring far too frequently used techniques, shows what really doesn’t work.

This table shows how to get people to behave the way you want in the workplace - use the 'hot' coloured behaviours

This table shows how to get people to behave the way you want in the workplace – use the ‘hot’ coloured behaviours

Reach us at 07779 345 499, m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

Marjorie Raymond

T: 07779 345 499

E: m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

We have experience in developing senior managers and their team members – both on an individual and team level – so they can develop practical approaches that encourage positive, constructive behaviour. This, in turn, leads to the development of positive beliefs and values. We are ready work with you, to help you get the best out of your people.

Here are some examples of approaches that can be used and tailored to your individual needs:

  • Mediation, to address workplace conflict
  • Individual and group coaching…Coaching – a powerful way of developing people
  • Personal development activities
  • Special projects, secondments and assignments
  • Psychometric assessment, which can identify strengths as well as derailing behaviours and also include 360 degree feedback
  • Structured module for understanding the psychological contracts in your organisation, both at an individual or team level
  • Straight Talking: …Straight Talking create change through conversations  

 

Coaching: a powerful way to develop people

Image

Coaching helped Emma to take a step back and consider what ‘walking in the shoes of others felt like’

Coaching helped Emma to take a step back and consider what ‘walking in the shoes of others felt like’

Emma, a newly minted graduate, was writing and producing her first professional play for an arts festival. It was proving a challenge – there were an awful lot of ‘firsts’. Coaching helped Emma deal with these

There was a lot for Emma to do. She was not only writing the play but was organising sponsorship, to briefing the media. In addition, she was managing people for the first time. She found this wasn’t always straightforward – and she had no training or experience to fall back on. Emma identified her top three challenges as follows:

  • Getting people with poor time management skills to deliver on time
  • Setting priorities and establishing a plan that was proportional to what needed to happen
  • Keeping relationships in good shape while under pressure

What Emma learnt

As the coaching dialogue developed, Emma realised that under pressure to deliver she was over-using some team members. Coaching helped Emma to take a step back and consider what ‘walking in the shoes of others felt like’.

Her coach then used of predominantly ‘how would you’ questions to prepare her future interactions. For instance, one puzzle was how to adapt to and collaborate with some people. This proved to be about having the confidence to nurture people while under considerable personal pressure to keep relationships intact. However, deepening relationships is one of Emma’s strengths.

POST SCRIPT: Emma’s play made a profit and got great media reviews.

 Emma says…

 “What was really great for me was walking away feeling motivated – and with a plan. Best of all, I was able to undertake the actions discussed, or was able to adapt them to our ever-changing circumstances.”

Read more here:

Reach us at 07779 345 499, m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

Marjorie Raymond

T: 07779 345 499

E: m.raymond@mwrconsulting.co.uk

We have experience in developing senior managers and their team memebers – both on an individual and team level – so they can develop practical approaches that encourage positive, constructive behaviour. This, in turn, leads to the development of positive beliefs and values. We are ready work with you, to help you get the best out of your people.

Here are some examples of approaches that can be used and tailored to your individual needs:

  • Individual and group coaching
  • Mediation, to address workplace conflict, read more here…Mediation how to avoid conflict
  • Personal development activities
  • Special projects, secondments and assignments
  • Psychometric assessment, which can identify strengths as well as derailing behaviours and also include 360 degree feedback
  • Structured module for understanding the psychological contracts in your organisation, both at an individual or team level
  • Straight Talking: …Straight Talking create change through conversations  Continue reading →