Put Down your Phone in Meetings


Leadership tip of the week #102

Adapted from HBR

If you’ve ever wondered whether you have a colleague’s full attention while they’re staring at their phone, stop wondering.

You don’t.

But instead of getting frustrated that coworkers constantly check their devices during meetings, take action.

  1. You might start by sharing research that shows even the mere presence of a cell phone — much less its glowing screen and constant buzzing — is bad for productivity.
  2. Then talk with your team about the upsides and downsides of using devices during meetings.
  3. Propose ground rules like “Be totally present” and “Keep the phone in your pocket.”
  4. The team could also agree to use a simple phrase like “Tech-check” as a friendly way of reminding someone to put their phone away.
  5. Once a few rules are in place, stick to them — and point out when a colleague doesn’t.

You might get some annoyed looks at first, but over time the team will set a new norm.

Adapted from “How to Get Someone to Put Away Their Phone and Actually Listen,” by Joseph Grenny and Kelly Andrews

Culture Ripple Effect


Leadership Tip of the week #101

adapted from HBR

By the age of six months, a baby begins to understand that his actions can affect his environment.

It’s amazing how as adults we quickly unlearn this.

As business leaders when we talk about shaping or changing company culture we sometimes forget to own the fact that we are the culture. Culture is not something that is laid down in a strategy document, or changed in the blink of an eye at an offsite event designed to rally the troops. Culture is how we act every day. It’s impacted by how we as individuals choose to behave and evidenced in the ripple effect that our actions catalyse.

When we seek change we often start by looking to see what we can change in others, forgetting that the ripples begin right where we are.

We must walk the walk and Talk the talk

Does your Body Language Convey Confidence?

2CAFE003-6197-4A2F-B950-3F20A3462969Leadship Tip of the Week #85


If you want people at work to trust and respect you, regardless of your title or authority, pay attention to your body language.

How you stand, sit, and speak all affect whether people are open to being influenced by you. For example, standing up straight with your shoulders back helps you come across as confident and commanding, while slouching and looking down at your feet have the opposite effect.

When meeting with someone you don’t know well, keep your arms uncrossed, your hands by your sides, and your torso open and pointed at the other person. This sends the message that you are open and trustworthy.

And try pitching your voice a little lower than you normally would, to connote power. This can counteract the effect of nervousness, which tends to push the tone of your voice higher.

Adapted from “How to Increase Your Influence at Work,” by Rebecca Knight