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the pressures of work

The Search for Value – an intelligent response to the pressures of work

The Pressures of Work

No pressure no diamonds – is a great quote from Thomas Carlyle that epitomises a winning response towards the pressures of work…and life. I recall being told quite early in my career that a diamond was simply a dead piece of wood put under immense pressure. This insight changed my perspective towards pressure. Suddenly pressure was a potential force for good rather than a negative emotion caused by the overload of life.The Search for Value 1

Clearly, pressure is a relative term. When circumstances change for the worse some people can only see and feel negative energy. Others see the opportunity it provides. Put simply some people wilt whilst others thrive on the pressures of work. In this short piece I will explore the pressure created by an organisation being asked once again to do more with less. This is a reality for many organisations in the last few years and, I fear, for many months to come.

The initial reaction always seems to be to reach first for the ‘cost’ lever. “Sharpen the pencils at both ends”, “slash all ‘unnecessary’ expenditure”, “baton down the hatches” are the clarion calls that ring throughout the land. This sends a shiver through most people as they consider, usually not for the first time, what can be cut and what can be stopped? This ‘cut the costs’ call to arms is almost universally received with gloom, worry and despair. The more cynical managers will say ‘here we go again’ and will watch like hawks as the scarcity mind-set begins to paralyse the organisation. They fatalistically observe the consequences as under investment and short term cost cutting begin to break out.

The Search for Value

I contend a better response to ‘cut all costs’ is to start a ‘search for value’. Read more

Acceptance

The Power of Acceptance

Acceptance and Change

According to change management theory, acceptance is the point at which things start to look up! Following, the anxiety, disbelief, anger, grief and hostility of the initial impact of change there is a time to just accept what is and get on with life. At least, that is the recommended path. What if you could get to the point of acceptance quicker? Would that help?

What if…?

One of the most powerful tools in the Change Maker Toolkit is the ability to think. And, one of the best questions to consider is, what if? Let’s ask some powerful questions about the UK following Brexit.

  • What if the UK economy does not falter in the way the experts predict? What if it does?
  • What if global trade could be re-engineered to minimise the impact of potentially higher tariffs in Europe? What if it can’t?
  • What if a fall in the number of migrant workers causes disruption in the delivery of essential services? What if the opposite is true?

Read more