No response is a response - but not a professional one

I always advocate the importance of telling someone when something is problematic - but in a nice way (at least in the first - or second - instance) so that they are given the benefit of the doubt.  For example, "I may have misunderstood the situation, but I felt that your comment on my appearance was unwarrented." However, I do sometimes fall into the trap of "ignore it the first time" (hence "second instance"). It's sometimes ok to ignore a comment which you believe you may have misread, at least the first might well have been you. Also, it may be such a little thing that you may not feel it needs made more of.  However, if it happens again then something needs to be said.  I sug

It's all in the timing

"Cinderella reminds us that everything can change in a moment" Especially if you are of behaviourist persuasion, timing is an incredibly important part of life. As a child we learn that people will (or won't) respond to us, because we unconsciously process the time and consistency of their behaviour when we cry. We can condition someone to act in a certain way by a timely reward, or deter a behaviour by its removal. Research into gambling on slot machines reveals an intricate set of timings within the machine programming designed to keep us digging deeper into our pockets. Not only that but when you think your friend, your manager, or your partner "doesn't listen" when you've "said it loa

"The truth about dogs and wolves"

Aesop's fable of the wolf and the dog tells the story of a hungry wolf who, so enamoured by the well-fed dog's tales of meals, treats, cuddles - all in return for barking at strangers, decided to follow him home...until he saw a bald spot on the dog's neck. "What's that?" asked the Wolf? "Oh it's nothing," replied the dog, "It's just from the chain my master uses to tie me up sometimes." On hearing this, the wolf said his farewells knowing in his heart that particular sacrifice was too great. The tale is used in Taleb's "Skin in the Game" to look at the difference between the employee (the dog) and the contractor (the wolf). The former has a regular pay check - but pays the price of the

When life gives you lemons - can you always "make lemonade"?

"Look on the bright side" "Find the silver lining" "Make lemonade" These are common saying we may use with ourselves and others to give us a "pep talk" or a "pick me up"when things aren't going our way. As a coach and trainer I'm always of the belief that you have the internal resources to be able to generate positivity or resilience to bring you through tough times, but I never lose sight of the fact that you may need support trying to access them - and that this is what takes time. This difficulty - accessing those resources - is something that naturally positive people struggle with understanding in others. As such, it is also something which can be both invalidating and unhelpful especi

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