Friday, October 31, 2008

Conflict Dynamic Profile for Individuals

GottaGettaCoach! has just started working with a new assessment called the CDP-I, or Conflict Dynamics Profile® for Individuals.

The CDP-I is now available through GottaGettaCoach!, Inc.

"The Conflict Dynamics Profile (CDP) was developed by the Leadership Development Institute at Eckerd College to prevent harmful conflict in the workplace. It provides managers and employees with a greater awareness of how they respond when faced with conflict so that they can improve on those behaviors causing the most problems.

"The CDP's focus on conflict behaviors, rather than styles, emphasizes an action-oriented approach which lessens the problems associated with harmful or unproductive forms of conflict and results in more effective conflict management skills.

"As a psychometrically sound instrument, the CDP shows solid evidence of reliability and validity and has been normed against a variety of organizations. Easily completed in 20-25 minutes, the CDP comes with a thorough Development Guide offering practical tips and strategies for strengthening conflict management skills."

More specifically, the CDP-I assessment:

  1. Identifies your Constructive Responses, that is, how well you demonstrate the following desirable behaviors during a conflict
  2. Identifies your Destructive Responses, that is, how well you control the following undesirable behaviors during a conflict
  3. Identifies your Hot Buttons, that is, what tends to frustrate or irritate you about how others behave.

So why is this even important? Because once you are more fully aware of your automatic "reactions" to a conflict, the better you will be able to more effectively self-manage your "responses" to that conflict and properly de-escalate it.

If you're interested in the CDP-I, please drop me a line and we'll assess your conflict behavior together.

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Friday, October 24, 2008

How to Have More Courage at Work

From our friends at BNET, here's a six-minute podcast on how to have more courage at work:








(direct download)

Description: "Courage isn't something most managers think about instilling in their employees. But management consultant Bill Treasurer says it’s vital to business success. Resistance to change and taking chances can hurt morale, productivity and profits. In this podcast, Treasurer explains how to inspire workers to move beyond their comfort zones and embrace risk. Treasurer is author of Courage Goes to Work: How to Build Backbones, Boost Performance and Get Results."

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Allowing H-I-STORY to Unfold

Back in March of 2007, I suggested a method for putting your best foot forward in an interview by sharing your Success Stories using the P-A-R framework:

  • P - Start by stating a PROBLEM you've dealt with that is relevant to one that your prospective employer might have and/or want you to be able to address.
  • A - Next, explain the APPROACH you took to meaningfully, if not eloquently, resolve the problem.
  • R - Then share how the RESULTS you achieved not only solved the immediate problem, but enabled additional downstream benefits as well.
As an alternative to P-A-R, you might also use the H-I-STORY approach:

  • H - Crisply state the HEADLINE for the story you're about to tell.
  • I - Assert just how IMPOSSIBLE the achievement would typically be given the circumstances your about to share.
  • STORY - After asking if they'd like to hear more, share your STORY.

Customer Crisis Example:

"Share a particularly challenging situation you faced when managing an client account."

Sure, I'd be happy to. I guess you could say that the HEADLINE for this example would be: "Client Account Saved through Amazing Teamwork!"

The situation was pretty IMPOSSIBLE, actually. Client satisfaction was at an all-time low, they already told us contract renewal would be delayed pending RFP results, and some of our team members had pretty much checked out because of all the complaining about them.

Would you like to hear the rest of the STORY?

Well, we realized that the only way to salvage the account was resolve about 85% of the client's outstanding concerns. (We didn't think we could solve all of their problems, but figured that if we resolved enough of them, we could show that we had 'rehabilitated' ourselves and were now back on the path.) To do so, we developed what we called an Expedited Three-Step:

  1. Step One - We conducted a series of 1-on-1 and group brainstorming sessions, both internally, and with our client contacts, to determine what we needed - and could count on - from everyone on both sides of the table - to complete our turnaround.
  2. Step Two - Armed with that insight, we sat down with our Big Boss and got authorization to establish an emergency SWAT team to assist us in our expedited efforts.
  3. Step Three - Implementation. The trick was getting people to step out of their comfort zones, take some risks, and really play full-out, like never before. It took a lot of give-and-take, late-night 'get-er-done' sessions, and way-too-much cold pizza, but, soon, we able to show the client some truly meaningful progress, enough to earn a no-bid extension of the contract in question.

Clearly, it never would've happened without some amazing teamwork to bring it all home and I'm so pleased to be able to say that I helped it all come together like that!

-----

Many otherwise fully-qualified applicants take too long to get to the punch-line of their story. The value of the H-I-STORY approach, then, is that it puts the headline first. Then, and only then, is the story told - but even still, not until the interviewer agrees that it's a story worth hearing.

Do you see how good things are just more likely to naturally unfold when you've captured your interviewer's Undivided Attention, like that?! Try it and see for yourself.

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Brainstorming Basics

An article in the Wall Street Journal caught my eye. In Productive Brainstorms Take the Right Mix of Elements, Kelly K. Spors interviewed Matt Bowen, president and CEO of Aloft Group, Inc. about brainstorming basics.
The key to effective brainstorming: Not squelching other people's ideas.
"There's a whole procedure involved," says Bowen. "Step One is to identify, very clearly in one sentence only, what the [specific goal] is going to be. Send it out a day or two in advance so employees start subconsciously thinking about it.

"The second stage is gather people together. Brainstorming sessions should never last more than an hour. They shouldn't be too large, usually no more than five or seven people, especially when you're first learning how to do it."

Bowen's House Rules include: Saying "Our goal is to produce X number of ideas"; no critiquing; no editing; and, most importantly, building on other people's ideas.

Diversity helps, so bringing in people from other departments is encouraged. Bowen calls them "agitators - somebody you know who is going to come in with a different [spin on things]."

Before you start, though, it's important to establish criteria to subsequently rate and the ideas that are generated. Examples of such litmuses:
  • Our ultimate solution has to be complete-able within three weeks
  • Our ultimate solution has to cost no more than the budget allocated for it
  • Our ultimate solution has to also address these tangential issues
  • Our ultimate solution has to involve the following stakeholders
While brainstorming can be a creative and fun process, don't take it too casually. Per Bowan, "A surefire way to kill an innovative process is to go through the processes and then never implement one of the ideas. You need to show that you're trying to implement something."

Agreed.

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Friday, October 17, 2008

Self Doubt? Get Out!

An article in the March 2008 issue of Dance Magazine (my daughter subscribes!) caught my eye. Written by Anne L. Wennerstrand and titled, "Hang in There," the piece "counsels dancers not to let self-doubt stand in the way of building a career."

Indeed. And there's broader applicability, as well. Per the author:
"No matter where you are in your career [bz: or what career you're in], you can stay encouraged by learning how to respond differently to your circumstances. With a little benign curiosity, you can feel more empowered and energized in the face of inevitable disappointments."
Benign curiosity. I like that notion.

Emily was an accomplished ballerina who held an unquestioned belief that if she wasn't "special enough" she wouldn't be worthy of future success and approval. As a result, she placed way too much importance on what others thought of her work. Through benign reflection she realized that this was due, in large part, to her early ballet teachers who "devalued her abilities in class, forcing her to prove herself worthy of their attention." Wow!

Michael, a musical theater dancer, would become extremely anxious and fearful when preparing to audition, notwithstanding his success in a number of prior shows. Through benign curiosity he learned that the voices in his head were really those of his family, who never really supported his love of dance in the first place. Hmmm.

So what is YOUR self-talk telling you and where did those ideas initially come from?
Likely, from a very long time ago. "The voices of self-doubt that a dancer [bz: or anyone else] may hear," writes Ms. Wennerstrand, "are often the result of the “outside getting inside.” These voices can be those of parents, teachers, and authority figures who were once relied upon for safety and approval. By developing awareness, dancers [bz: and others] can learn to question some of those internalized voices."

So don't just listen to your negative self-talk and accept it as truth, wonder about its truth. Question its truth. Consider that it may NO LONGER be true. ASSERT that it doesn't have to be true.

And tell your self-doubt to get out!

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Some People Like To Make Life, Tougher Than It Is

The band: CAKE
The Album: Pressure Chief
The song: Tougher Than It Is



Well there is no such thing as you
It doesn't matter what you do
The more you try to qualify
The more it all will pass you by

Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is
Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is

Well the more you try to shake the cat
The more the thing will bite and scratch
It's best I think to leave its fur
and to listen to its silky purr

Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is
Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is

Well there is no such thing as you
It doesn't matter what you do
The more you try to qualify
The more it all will pass you by

Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is
Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is
Some people like to make life
a little tougher than it is

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Monday, October 13, 2008

4qtr2008 Not Just Talk! Newsletter Now Available

Not Just Talk! - the quarterly newsletter of GottaGettaCoach!, Inc.
The 4qtr2008 Not Just Talk! quarterly newsletter from Barry Zweibel and GottaGettaCoach!, Inc. is now available and ready for viewing at http://www.ggci.com/NotJustTalk/.

Enjoy!

Monday, October 6, 2008

How Happy Are You?

So how happy ARE you?! Here's a fun little quiz courtesy of the Chicago Tribune and the Psychological Flourishing Scale:

Step One - Answer each of the 12 statements below:
  1. I lead a purposeful and meaningful life.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  2. My social relationships are supportive and rewarding.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  3. I am engaged and interested in my daily activities.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  4. I actively contribute to the happiness and well-being of others.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  5. I am competent and capable in the activities that are important to me.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  6. I am a good person and live a good life.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  7. My material life (income, housing, etc.) is sufficient for my needs.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  8. I generally trust others and feel part of my community.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  9. I am satisfied with my religious or spiritual life.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  10. I am optimistic about the future.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  11. I have no addictions, such as to alcohol, illicit drugs, or gambling.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree
  12. People respect me.
    A. Strongly agree
    B. Agree
    C. Slightly agree
    D. Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree
    E. Slightly disagree
    F. Disagree
    G. Strongly disagree

Step Two - Calculate your happiness/flourishing score as follows:

  • Give yourself 7 points for each Strongly agree response
  • Give yourself 6 points for each Agree response
  • Give yourself 5 points for each Slightly agree response
  • Give yourself 4 points for each Mixed, or neither agree or nor disagree response
  • Give yourself 3 points for each Slightly disagree response
  • Give yourself 2 points for each Disagree response
  • Give yourself 1 point for each Strongly disagree response

Step Three - Consider your results:

  • 80-84 = Extremely high flourishing
  • 74-79 = Very high flourishing
  • 68-73 = High flourishing
  • 60-67 = Flourishing
  • 48-59 = Slight lack of flourishing
  • 32-47 = Lack of flourishing
  • 12-31 = Extremely low flourishing

Step Four - Next Steps:

Happy with what you found?! If so, GREAT! If not, review the 12 questions and decide which ones you want to happily flourish more with.

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