Stand-up desks, wellness programs, flexible schedules, financial consulting, access to health professionals, and a strong emphasis on employee recognition have all recently become focal points at many workplaces. It makes you wonder why leaders are suddenly so keen to create workspaces and cultures that bind teams together and make employees (dare we say it) happy and healthy to be at work.
Our world, as we’ve seen recently in the news, isn’t getting any softer. However, research shows that companies that focus on creating happy, healthier, motivating, and appreciative workplaces are onto something profound—even, and maybe especially, during turbulent times. It’s not about creating atmospheres lined with rainbows and butterflies either. Instead, these studies prove the “hard” impact a workplace environment has on productivity and engagement—on both the individual and team level.
Read on to discover which traits in your workplace are helping you achieve your best possible outcomes, and which might be derailing your potential.
You’ve got allotted breaks—and you take them.
It sounds almost too good to be true, but research has shown that regular breaks are crucial to productivity. Your brain needs a breather in between tasks so it can fully focus and engage when you need it to. In fact, the most productive employees take a full 17-minute break for every 52 minutes of concentration. Try their pattern out for a day, and see if it makes a difference. Even switching to a simpler task can count as a breather. Just remember the benefits of taking a break the next time you’re tempted to skip yours—because even just five minutes off can make a big difference.
To serve as effective thought partners, boards must move beyond an arms-length relationship with digital issues (exhibit). Board members need better knowledge about the technology environment, its potential impact on different parts of the company and its value chain, and thus about how digital can undermine existing strategies and stimulate the need for new ones. They also need faster, more effective ways to engage the organization and operate as a governing body and, critically, new means of attracting digital talent. Indeed, some CEOs and board members we know argue that the far-reaching nature of today’s digital disruptions—which can necessitate long-term business-model changes with large, short-term costs—means boards must view themselves as the ultimate catalysts for digital transformation efforts. Otherwise, CEOs may be tempted to pass on to their successors the tackling of digital challenges.
Do you work more than 40 hours a week? If you're an entrepreneur or small business owner, it's hard not to, but all that extra time in the workplace isn't necessarily a good thing. After a certain point, it can be counterproductive and even hazardous to your health, so it's imperative to know when to say no to more hours.
Various organizations and independent researchers have looked at the physical, mental, emotional, and social effects of working beyond the standard 40 hours a week. Notable findings include the following:
Working more than 10 hours a day is associated with a 60 percent jump in risk of cardiovascular issues.
10 percent of those working 50 to 60 hours report relationship problems; the rate increases to 30 percent for those working more than 60 hours.
Working more than 40 hours a week is associated with increased alcohol and tobacco consumption, as well as unhealthy weight gain in men and depression in women.
For the past 16 years, we've studied the background of incoming CEOs at the world's largest 2,500 public companies as part of the annual Strategy& CEO Success study. Take this quiz to assess your immediate chances, based on the data we've collected, of becoming a chief executive in your chosen industry.
As we go through our daily-by-day lives without a pause or a moment to think about what it is we are actually doing, it's easy to assume we are working as effectively as we can. It is important to take that pause and observe others in action. Are we working as effectively as our extremely successful peers?
Inspired by Stephen R. Covey's The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, take a look at the things very successful people do and see how their habits aid them in achieving their maximum effectiveness.
Want to become one of those highly effective people and no longer a bystander? Try these 7 habits and find your own success.
1. Be proactive
Nothing will ever get done if we do nothing but sit around waiting for things to happen. Effective people know that there is no value in overthinking, in spending more time on our words than our actions. The most powerful thing anyone can do is simply take the reins in their own hands to instigate movement.
2. See the end
While the process of action is undoubtedly important, sometimes the impetus for our most powerful, effective actions comes from knowing where the end lies. If we continue to keep that in mind, we'll be able to maximize our productivity to reach our highly desired, very rewarding end goal.
When embarking on a task with many steps, it can be tempting to stop something halfway through when the going gets tough. What we should do, however, is actually push through. The difficulty of an action shouldn't change that it's our priority.
Effective people can always imagine a favorable outcome--even if one doesn't seem likely to be written in the books. When you feel bogged down, or your actions are simply not getting you where you want, practice visualization for a couple minutes. Visualize your goals and the steps you need to make to get you there.
5. Try to understand things beforehand
Often, people jump into things without properly reading the instructions--ultimately resulting in ineffective actions far from the results they had previously envisioned. Setting aside adequate time to sort through and plan can really benefit your end results.
There is nothing more powerful than combining forces. Regardless of how competent we might be on our own, there is always greater strength in numbers. Synergize on everything you can--how much more effective you are may surprise you.
7. Renew and improve
Last, one of the most important habits of all is that of self-care. We need to allow ourselves the time and space--not just once in a blue moon, but a bit here and there every day--in order to mend our burnt-out ends. Make time to regenerate and you will find that you are better able to effectively achieve your personal best.
Want a team that says “Thank God It’s Monday”? Here’s how…
One of the most important and core elements a company of people can be aligned on is their mission, vision and values about the company. These components are essential and powerful drivers for the exec team to efficiently achieve the success they want. They are also the key to having a highly engaged culture of team members who say ‘Thank God It’s Monday!’
Many companies don’t really think this is important to have these or have them nailed down. But that’s primarily because of one major flaw in the use of these terms. That one flaw is the integrity that runs behind the concepts of the Mission, Vision and Values Statements.
Often there is a lot of misunderstanding about these words, mission, vision and values. And there are a lot of definitions out there.
Every CEO, marketer and entrepreneur wants their business to “stand out”, to rise up out of the noise of the competition and grab the hearts and minds of consumers and clients. They want raving fans lining up for their products and services. They want repeat business and loyalty. Who wouldn’t?
When you have raving fans, you get the two most coveted things in 21st century marketing — word of mouth and “social proof”, in the form of positive reviews and spontaneous, unequivocal social promotion.
Young children fizz with ideas. But the moment they go to school, they begin to lose the freedom to explore, take risks and experiment.
We spend our childhoods being taught the artificial skill of passing exams. We learn to give teachers what they expect. By the time we get into industry, we have been conditioned to conform. We spend our days in meetings and talk about “thinking outside the box”. But rarely do we step outside it.
The sad truth is that schools were never designed to produce creativity. Not many people are aware of it, but the education systems in the US and many other countries are based on the 19th-century Prussian model. Children were taught to obey, not to challenge or think creatively. That’s why you stand to attention when the teacher walks into the class. It’s why from the US to China, children wear uniforms.
The system worked well for blue-collar workers – people who clocked in at factories and stood on production lines making things such as automobile engines. But in a world driven by search engines, the system is a busted flush. We must teach creativity at school as a matter of urgency.
If you are a modern-age professional, we expect you to be self-aware and reflect. At its best, this self-awareness is present in every moment. You engage with another person, and you are at the same time aware of the quality of your engagement and the choices you make. I call this ability double-tracking. In the moment, and watchful of the moment, all at once.
Reflection, however, tends to happen in a pause. The pause is the moment in-between active engagement. Often only milliseconds long. But whoa – what glorious things happen in a pause.
If you’re ambitious, you’re bound to feel like a failure from time to time. Lofty goals lead to inevitable moments when you aren’t yet living up to your expectations. We live in a world that
Via massimo facchinetti
Over the years, Goldstein has learned some important lessons about how to create an environment where innovation thrives. Here are seven essentials.
Be A Sponge
Innovators are intellectually curious and thrive on absorbing new information that may help their ideas. The I-lab holds regular programming and has a mentoring program to help innovators learn as much as they want to learn. Even if you don’t have the benefit of the I-lab, continually seeking out the information you need and people who can teach you essential skills and information is an important part of being innovative, she says.
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