Love is in the Air… How to Create a Happier Workplace

With Valentine’s Day upon us, there is lots of talk about happiness and love happening.  This got me thinking about a very important factor important to every manager, leader, business owner and CEO.  In fact, with employee turnover running high, and unemployment rates at very low levels, employers who want to attract and retain top people need to look beyond traditional methods.

So, what does employee happiness mean?

According to The Chief Happiness Officer BlogHappiness at work is  “the extent to which employees feel good about their jobs”
How does employee happiness differ from employee engagement?  

The Chief Happiness Officer Blog defines employee engagement as ” the extent to which employees feel passionate about their jobs, are committed to the organization, and put discretionary effort into their work.”

These two factors are very much inter-related.

Numerous research studies have linked employee happiness with increased levels of employee engagement, productivity and creativity.  Productivity increases from 12 – 30% so its not insignificant.

When an leader, supervisor or employee is happy with the work they do and the workplace culture, they feel valued, want to contribute and will give extra effort.  They have reduced absenteeism, lower turnover and treat your customers better.  All of this impacts your bottomline.

If fact, I remember a time when my team asked me what was wrong. I tried to reassure them all was well, the questions were asked over and over.  What I didn’t realize until that moment was that my unhappiness with my boss and my work was negatively impacting them,  This prompted me to really focus on being a great leader and to deal with issues around my position differently.  Interestingly enough, I chose to walk away from that role and organization and enter the world of entreprneurship three months later.

What about Entrpeneurs?

If you are an entrepreneur, your happiness also impact your success.  Interestingly enough, many entrepreneurs report higher levels of happiness than their counterparts in regular jobs.

I love this statement by Steli Efti, “Entrepreneurship is an amazing and adventurous journey, as well as an intense growth experience. It’s a blessing to work on new ideas, solve big problems, and create something from nothing.”

If you don’t love what you do, why are spending so much time and effort to make it work?  If you’re not happy, how is that impacting your creativity, your passion, your energy level?

Creating a positive work environment for yourself, working on what you love and finding time for you can be critical to your business success.

Happiness Leads to Success

After years as an entrepeneur, and having worked with clients and their teams, we all have ups and downs in our work and in life. When we create a positive work environment for ourselves and those around us, we all do better.

Happiness isn’t wearing a smile all the time, or laughing, or exuberant behaviour.  Instead, it results from a string of positive experiences. Sometimes, anger or frustration peek up, but do not deter from happiness – they may in fact clear the air and improve happiness.

What leads to Happiness in Business?

1.  A strong sense of purpose.   Organizations with a clear purpose that aligns directly with their values are more likely to create a meaningful workplace where employees are happier and more engaged.

2. Flexibility and Input.  Organizations who embrace employee development, allow for employee ownership of their job related task, encourage employee input or allow flexibility in work hour are happier places to work.

3.  Authenticity.  Employees who are authentic, not putting on “an act” at work are more resilient and therefore they can navigate the ups and downs that naturally occur, and they tend to be kinder and more of a positive asset to the team.

Cultivating a strong team with a positive work culture where employees love to work is key to a sustainable bottomline. Contact us to explore how we add value to your team.

Creating a Profitable, Purpose Driven Business

On September 17, 2019 I had the honour to present to the Vancouver Business Network. Here’s my presentation.

I’m on a mission to change the world through business, by changing the world. If you want to create change, be on purpose in your business, and attract loyal customers and talented team members, let’s chat.

Win with a Positive Mindset

Did you have an opportunity to watch the gold medal men’s hockey game on Saturday?  This game had the underdog, Germany, playing the overwhelming favourite, Olympic Athletes from Russia (OAR). Prior to the game, the discussions focused on the amazing feat of the German team to knock out strong medal contenders to get to the gold-medal game.  In fact, the German team didn’t qualify for the Sochi games in 2014 and have not won a medal in men’s hockey since 1976. How would the Germans would perform against the stronger and more experienced OAR team? Would it be a one-sided game?

Well, the game was definitely not one-sided and it was probably one of the best gold medal games since the Canada vs USA game in Vancouver 2010.   The game went into overtime and OAR came out the winner of the gold medal.  The Germans won the Silver medal.  A pretty successful outcome.

If we look at how a definite underdog could dig deep and be a strong contender we can identify one key trait — the Germans believed they could win.   In fact, one team member started a group chat in the Fall of 2017 and called it “the march to gold”.   They say they began to believe they could really be contenders.

Positive Mindset

When we talk about a positive mindset, what do we mean?

Positive thinking is the process of creating thoughts that create and transform energy into reality.

It is amazing how our mind can be the catalyst to inject energy and focus to our efforts.  A positive mindset offers each of us so many benefits

  • more energy to pursue our goals
  • better decision making ability
  • improved resiliency to the ups and downs
  • a strong and positive belief that things can become true – this is reflected in innovation and sales.

 

Be a game changer.  The world has enough followers.

 

Steps You Can Take to Get More of What You Want

One thing we all face in business is the recurring pattern of ups and downs.  Everyone faces them.  In fact, some of the most successful business leaders have faced some catastrophic downs yet they turned their fortunes around.

How can you create a positive mindset if you’re feeling like a failure or are frustrated with the constant ups and downs we can face in business?

  1.  Create a vision board. The visual images you assemble on your vision board make those ideas, dreams and goals in your mind more concrete and achievable.  The purpose is to know exactly what success looks like to you.
    1. Close your eyes and see what it is you want to achieve, how you want to live, or how you want to feel.
    2. Grab a corkboard.
    3. Now, convert those images in your mind into pictures, sayings, or words you can place on your vision board.
    4. Hang the completed vision board where you will see it several times a day.
    5. Everyday, look at your vision board and focus on what actions you must take today to make these images a reality.  Your vision board is a visual representation of your goals and you are reminded about your goals every day.
  2.  Create a vocabulary of positive statements and responses that will help you reprogram your brain.   For example, when someone asks how you are, respond with “I’m great”, “I’m well” rather than “Hanging in there” or “I’ve been better”.   When facing a challenge, tell yourself “I can do this” instead of “It’s impossible”.
  3.  Start each day with a positive affirmation.   An affirmation is a statement that helps you rewire your brain and reset the vibe you will feel all day.
    1. Stand in front of a mirror (yes, this is important), look at yourself and say something positive.  Use the present tense about what it is you want to have happen.  Examples include ‘Today will be a great day”, “I am confident as I take new steps to push outside my comfort zone” etc.
    2.  Download our deck of positive affirmations that you can draw upon to help you reprogram your thinking.   Add some of your own too!

 

Successful people maintain a positive focus in life no matter what is going on around them. They stay focused on their past successes rather than their past failures, and on the next action steps they need to take to get them closer to the fulfillment of their goals rather than all the other distractions that life presents to them.  Jack Canfield

News Release – CUTV Radio

Catherine Rocheleau of Ignite Leadership International to be Featured on CUTV News Radio

Posted: Nov 06, 2017 7:01 AM PST

 My whole passion is seeing people be successful in a measurable way.”

— Catherine Rocheleau

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA, November 6, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ — If you want to make a change, how are you going to know whether it’s effective and how quickly are you going to know that it’s effective? How are you able to evaluate and measure change?

Ignite Leadership International is a consulting and coaching firm that helps organizations implement change. Led by its founder, Catherine Rocheleau, Ignite Leadership has worked with small and medium-sized businesses to improve their leadership for over 25 years.

“For me, what I try to bring to my job is an excitement and passion for the change process,” says Rocheleau. “It’s a tough process to go through; it’s not always fun. But gaining the clarity of the end result, learning as you go and being willing to adapt is essential for success.”

Ignite Leadership combines both the soft skills of interpersonal communication as well as the hard metrics so organizations can see improvements in real time and adapt to today’s ever-changing world in a successful way.

“We have a real focus on team dynamics, communication and leadership,” says Rocheleau, “but everything we do is tied back to business metrics as well. We want to know the work we do together is actually making a significant difference within the organization.”

Sometimes what businesses think is their problem area is something completely different. Sometimes it’s the systems within the organization, but, says Rocheleau, it will usually start with a leader.

“It is not uncommon that I peel back the layers to identify a problem that is different than that originally identified by the client during our initial meeting,” says Rocheleau. “Clients have to be willing work on the real challenge and make the needed changes for us to be successful.”

Rocheleau says she sees leaders as having lifelong passion and engaging in lifelong learning. Leadership is a role. It’s not necessarily attached to a position. Leaders are the people who support change to making things better.

“How do we make sure, if there are communication problems or performance problems, that we’re actually dealing the root cause,” says Rocheleau. “Those are the things I think are really important to focus on.”

Coming from a background in the food service and healthcare industries, Rocheleau holds a master’s degree in managerial leadership and project management, as a well as an executive coaching certification.

“I’ve always been very interested in making things work well and to see people improve, so for me, to see the success at the other end, that’s really what drives me,” says Rocheleau. “I love to see people make that shift that’s going to help them to be better. My whole passion is seeing people be successful in a measurable way.”

CUTV News Radio will feature Catherine Rocheleau in an interview with Jim Masters on November 8th at 4pm EDT.

Listen to the show on BlogTalkRadio.

If you have a question for our guest, call (347) 996-3389.

For more information on Ignite Leadership, visit https://www.igniteleaders.com

Lou Ceparano
CUTV News
(631) 850-3314
email us here

Information contained on this page is provided by an independent third-party content provider. Frankly and this Site make no warranties or representations in connection therewith. If you are affiliated with this page and would like it removed please contact pressreleases@franklyinc.com

Boost Your Productivity & Ignite Results

Do you find yourself looking back on your day (or week) and wonder where time went?  Is your to-do list getting longer and dreams of success going unfulfilled?  You may be busy and doing lots but are you doing the right things at the right time to get the right results?

Recently I led a conversation with some clients which pulled some excerpts from Seth Godin’s best selling book, The Dip.  This book looks at those time when you face minor set-backs and lack the excitement when you first began pursuing that goal. What stops you from moving forward?  How can you rekindle that passion to take the next steps?

This conversation really resonated with me as I faced a major, life-changing event last summer which has had a huge impact on my own passion.  My goals are still there, and the passion to pursue them and not take a different direction, still exists, yet taking the first step seems more like a giant leap.

timeblockingThis forced me to look at the tips I give my coaching clients when they are facing their own “dip”.  I encourage others to use time blocking to focus on those tasks that are a high priority and high importance to reaching goals, yet may not be part of your day-to-day focus.

Time blocking is the term given to setting aside a specific time in your calendar to complete a specific task — an appointment with yourself and your goals. Yes, it’s a calendar entry and can be easy to blow off when you are busy with other things in your business, but aren’t you and your goals worth some time too?  The advantage of booking it in your calendar, is you won’t book another meeting during that time.

Once the time is blocked into your calendar, the next step is to set yourself up for success.  Part of the process is to include some time each day (either at the beginning or end of the day) which you dedicate to preparing to work.  This includes pulling the tools and resources together that you need to do each job so they are on-hand and you won’t waste time searching. When its your blocked time, the goal is to focus on getting things done!

What I have found is that when I block the time, I am 10 times more likely to do what I’ve planned, than if I only had it on a to-do list.  More importantly, when the time is assigned to a task I really don’t enjoy doing, I know I only have to spend those few minutes and I can then move on!  It’s amazing what you can accomplish in short periods when you eliminate the distractions.

Here are a few tips to making time blocking work for you.

  1.  Identify small tasks that don’t take very long (i.e. 5 minutes or less) that you can do when you have a few free moments. I do these items while on the bus, or when I arrive early to an appointment.  It always feels great to just get them done.  Some things I do is return emails, post to social media, enter expenditures into Quickbooks Online, update Trello with tasks that come to mind etc.
  2.  Always plan prep-time each day.  Use this time to review your day and the next day, and to pull together the information, tools and resources you will need to complete the tasks scheduled.
  3. ID-10076595 Photo by Zuzzuillo. Freedigitalphotos.netDetermine the length of the each block.  Each block of time doesn’t have to be equal.  I find 20 – 30 minutes to be ideal and more motivating than long blocks.  The longer the block the more easily you can become distracted.
  4. Set a theme to each block. You may want to focus on client calls or writing articles, or creating social media posts, or working on a new program for clients.  It’s ok to be a bit broad in the description in your calendar.  The more definite details can be determined during your daily prep-time.
  5. Recognized your own patterns. If you’re not a morning person, maybe its better to schedule creative tasks later in the day.  If you need quiet and are an early riser, schedule these tasks first thing in your day.  When you schedule creative tasks at times when you are more likely to be productive, you will get more done!
  6. Stick with your blocked time schedule.  This may feel rigid but if you are going to achieve your big goals and be successful, its important to stick with your plan.   As the saying goes, you won’t regret what you did, you will only regret what you didn’t do.   The time you block is “your time” and just as important as your client appointments, fitness time, etc.
  7. Avoid distractions.  Turn off the ringer and notifications on your phone and computer.  Clear your desk so other distractions are not within eyesight. The goal is to focus on the one task you planned.
  8. Set a timer. You can use a kitchen timer or a calendar reminder on your phone – whatever works for you.  I find people really like the time when they are doing something they don’t like doing.  The timer lets you know when you can stop!  It may sound counter-intuitive but it works.  If you’ve hit a wall, then you have given yourself permission to stop and move onto another task. If you are on a roll when the timer goes, feel free to keep going!
  9. Keep detailed notes of what you have done and what you still need to do.   Just like your prep-time, your Pen in handnotes offer you great feedback on what lies ahead so you can “get in the groove” and take action quickly.  Switching your mind from one task to another can be challenging at the beginning.  Your notes help you know where you left off last time and where to begin today.  I use Trello to keep notes on my activities and have checklists to mark things off.  My notebook allows me to just write or draw thoughts and ideas and keep them in one place.  Take pictures of your notes and upload into Trello or Evernote.
  10. Celebrate your successes. It’s important for you to recognize your efforts when you reach a milestone.  What treat or “self-reward” will you enjoy when you reach each milestone as you move through your “dip”?

 

If you are struggling to reach those big goals or keep hitting a wall and unable to push through it, book an Ignition Call where we will explore what your biggest obstacle is and how you can take the first step forward.  Contact us today!

Going Rogue – Time to Rebuild or Breakup

I am sure many of you remember when the newswire was buzzing with the lone-wolf behaviour of one of the (Canadian) Tenors during the signing of Canada’s national anthem at a All-Star baseball game in San Diego in July.  During the anthem, Tenor Remigio Pereira substituted words to make a political statement.  This change was made without prior knowledge of his fellow quartet members.  The backlash has been huge and now the future of the Tenors is in question.

In this instance, one member of the group took it upon himself to act on his own, whttp://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-image-solution-vs-problem-solving-business-consulting-compass-arrow-pointing-to-word-problems-d-render-image-suitable-image32482606ithout permission or the support of his fellow teammates, to express his own political belief.  Not only
were his actions self-motivated, but the timing of his message was poor and the desired result not what he intended.

This is a very public example of how one member of a team can have a significant impact on the team.  In the case of the Tenors, trust was broken, member of the group no longer want to perform with Mr. Pereira, and their future must now be re-created.

Within most businesses, there are teams which are key to creating  and sustaining the business, its reputation with customers and its internal culture, to name only a few factors.  When someone on a team does something rogue these three steps can help salvage the situation.

  1.  Act swiftly —  If the rogue behaviour has the ability to cause damage, your swift and decisive action is vital to making a wrong a right.  A rogue act requires you to step in, initiate an impartial investigation to determine the facts and to hear all perspectives.  Sometimes a 3rd Party is needed to conduct this investigation.  The investigation should be quick and to the point so next steps can be taken quickly.
  2. Be transparent —  In all actions and communication associated with the incident, it is important to communicate clearly and often so everyone within your team, your business, and key stakeholders understand what is happening.  You don’t want to breech confidentiality or individual rights, but you also don’t want people second-guessing you.    When you are transparent with the rogue team member, they also know where they stand and what actions will be taken and what to expect.  Transparency and frequent communication goes a long way to build trust, repair your reputation and minimize the negative impact the rogue actions could cause.
  3. Follow Through — Once you have dealt with the situation, its important to follow-through.  This means confirming the conclusion of the incident, ensuring all actions plans identified to prevent a repeat are in place and to check in with each member of the team or key stakeholders to get their perspectives, feedback and comments.  This debrief process is often over-looked, yet I have found it to be the most important.

Sometimes you can’t repair the damage done and a break-up is the right thing to do.  When this happens, the swift action, transparency and follow-through will help you re-focus on the future and take the right steps forward.

 

We have lots of experience assisting organizations during and after a critical incident.  Contact us to learn how we many assist you.

Grow Your Business This Summer

Are you ready to “Hit the Ignition Switch“? and take action in your business?

If the summer brings a slower pace and, in many cases a lower income, then this program is for you!!!Start Button Blue shutterstock_64017139

My new summer quickstart program is designed with the business owner in mind who wants to

  • Get Clear on what they want to achieve in 20-13
  • Start Planning a new project or program
  • Get Moving on incomplete projects or ideas they just haven’t actioned yet
  • Attract Customers
  • Launch a new program or product
  • Grow your business
  • Increase revenues….. and more!!!

 

It’s time for you to capitalize on this unique opportunity… a slower pace and more time to focus on your business needs instead of only your clients needs.  As a long-time entrepreneur, I have changed the tides in my business using my proven system and now enjoy steady business income year round… even when I take time away!

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