In a two-part series, I want to explore how people’s definition of, and approach to, work is changing. For some, it’s about reconsidering how they work (discussed here). For others, it’s about what they choose to do as work (discussed next time).

There’s not going to be another year like 2020 in our lifetimes, I predict. Or maybe I just hope desperately. The impact to the world economy, the ongoing widespread health crises, the upheaval of our personal routines and definitions of normalcy . .

How Do Teams Benefit Leaders? In Every Way Imaginable.

Why do we have leaders? The answer is all in the name, right? We can’t get to where we’re going, if it’s more than one of us, without someone to lead us there. We need someone to make the tough decisions, or plan the strategy, or communicate on behalf of everyone else. Ok, yes, to all of that. But that’s what everyone else gets – the followers, if you will. What does a leader get out of being the leader? How do teams benefit leaders? The obvious answers are power, or accolades or whatever. That’s probably true –

Is Flexibility on Your CV? The Skills Companies Need Now

Hiring in 2020 is down. That is hardly a headline in the midst of a pandemic that has impacted millions of people around the world and nearly every country on earth. But, companies do have to find ways to keep operating, and they’ll need to be able to do so in an environment that looks a lot more like 2020 and a lot less like. . .ever before. Let’s not call it post-coronavirus; let’s say post-coronavirus reaction. What do companies need as they hire with an expectation that where we are now is the scenario for at least

Coaching Through COVID — Managing People During Coronavirus

Around the world, 2020 is going to be remembered as extraordinarily difficult. The coronavirus pandemic has passed the six-month mark, and impacted millions around the world. Sadly, it’s not only not over, it’s very possibly going to have another wave this autumn. With a vaccine months away, at best, we have to learn to live with COVID-19 as a new way of life, not an event to get past. In our work lives, that affects a lot of how we do things. Managing people during coronavirus, for example, is now largely done remotely. And we need to do

Signs of a Leader (Hint: They might not be the boss.)

This is the first part of a two-part series. Next time: how to find leaders worth following.

It’s a simple question, but perhaps not an easy answer – what are the signs of a leader, as opposed to just a “boss”? Are you just someone people report to? It’s different to head up a team on an organisational chart, to put in performance reviews and assign work to people. Yes, you’re the boss.

But being a leader isn’t really about any of that. You can be a leader even

Ho, Ho. . .Hold On — Holiday Party Etiquette at the Office

I really don’t like sounding preachy. So I wasn’t even going to post anything like this. But the truth is, missteps in holiday party etiquette at the office find their way to my desk every year. Every. Year. For 25 years. So…I decided I’d just give you a few ideas about how not to become a Christmas tale. Consider it my gift to you. You might wish you could exchange it for something more fun. I understand.

How to keep your holiday party etiquette at the office festive not foolish:

Millennials have changed the workforce in countless ways. That’s not all bad, of course, and Gen X leaders should embrace Millennial corporate values (some of them, anyway). Millennials have changed the face of companies, literally, with more diverse employees. They’ve changed employee expectations, with more emphasis on things they care about, like CSR efforts and a voice in their career. And they generally have questioned – even rejected — many of the professional norms (read: restraints) around dress codes, organization charts and communication style.

Here are three ways that Gen X leaders should embrace Millennial

Men at Work: We need men to mentor women in the workplace

One of the challenges of initiatives regarding promotion of women in the workplace is that it can feel like a chicken and egg problem. Studies show that women in positions of power are more likely than men to hire and promote other women. And there are obvious reasons for women to mentor women. And in the era MeToo, it seems a particularly dicey time to encourage men to mentor women in the workplace. But as I wrote in a prior post about the challenges of female leadership, just 7% of the CEOs in the FTSE 100 are

Why Using 360-Degree Feedback in Performance Evaluations Gets Poor Marks

First in a two-part series. This is the first of two posts about 360-degree feedback in performance evaluations. This week we discuss why this method of assessing performance is problematic. Next time: better ways to use this feedback to improve individual business relationships.

Someone asked me recently about performance evaluations, specifically, whether 360-degree feedback in performance evaluations was useful. The argument in favour of them is that by getting a feedback from not only your manager, but also your direct reports, internal clients, external clients, peers and . . . whomever else you can

Cultural fit matters. But maybe it’s time to call it cultural add.

The other day, a friend of mine told me about a new employee at her office. The woman on first glance was just another twenty-something new hire with what my friend called “appropriate business look”. Apparently the woman had an unremarkable hairstyle in a natural-looking colour (“no streaks of purple or green”), simple jewelry (“only her ears were pierced”), and a tailored, silk blouse. At the meeting, she was articulate and well-informed on the subject matter, with insightful questions and useful ideas. Then, when she raised her hand to make a point . . .she revealed a sleeve