Tag Archives: career

BEING A TRUSTED ADVISOR

CLOUD LIGHT WEB

BEING A TRUSTED ADVISOR

The Trusted Advisor book covers trust-based relationships in a very systematic way, presents a trust process-model and describes it in action. 

The trust process-model has 5 stages (engage, listen, frame, envision and commit) and provides useful insights

The book is structured in 3 major parts: 

 

Part 1 – Perspectives on trust

Part 2 – The structure of trust building

Part 3 – Putting trust to work

 


Part 1 – Perspectives on trust

 

1) What would be the benefits if your clients /colleagues  trusted you more? What are the primary characteristics of a trusted advisor?

2) What is a Trusted Advisor? (What do great trusted advisors all seem to do?)

3) Earning Trust (What are the dynamics of trusting and being trusted?)

4) How to give advice (How do you ensure your advice is listened to?)

5) The rules of Romance: Relationship building (What are the principles of building strong relationships?)

6) The importance of mindsets (What attitude must you have to be effective?)

7) Sincerity or technique? (Do you really have to care for those you advise?)

Part 2 – The structure of trust building 

8) The trust equation (What are the four key components that determine the extent of trust?)

9) The development of trust (What are the 5 stages of trust-building?)

10) Engagement (How do you get clients to initiate discussions with you?)

11) The art of listening (How can you improve your listening skills?)

12) Framing the issue (How can you help clients look at their issues in a fresh way?)

13) Envisioning an alternate reality (How can you help clients clarify what they’re really after?)

14) Commitment(How do you ensure clients are willing to do what it takes to solve their problems?)

Part 3 – Putting trust to work 

15) What’s so hard about all this? (Why are truly trust-based relationships so scarce?)

16) Different client types (How do you deal with clients of differing types?)

17) The Lieutenant Columbo approach (What can we learn from an unorthodox winner?)

18) The role of trust in getting hired (How do you create trust at the outset of a relationship?)

19) Building trust on the current assignment (How can you conduct your assignment in a way that adds to trust?)

20) Re-earning trust away from the current assignment (How can we build trust when you’re not working on an assignment?)

21) The case of cross-selling (Why is cross-selling so hard, and what can be done about it?)

22) The Quick-impact list to gain trust (What are the key things you should do first?)

 


The quick impact list to gain trust includes:

 

·         Listen to everything

·         Empathise

·         Note what the other person is feeling

·         Build a shared agenda

·         Take a personal risk

·         Ask about a related area

·         Ask great questions

·         Give away ideas

·         Return calls fast

·         Relax your mind

 

The approach also develops a Trust Equation:

 

       T = C + R + I  

      —————

                  S

 

Where: 

T= trustworthiness

C=credibility ( words)

R=reliability.  (action)

I =intimacy.    (emotions)

S= self orientation. ( motives)

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PORTFOLIO LIFESTYLE / CAREER

CLOUD LIGHT WEB

One aspect of my coaching work with clients is to help them develop and implement a portfolio approach . Some of these shared insights may be of use to you: 

1. A portfolio career is the pursuit of more than one income source simultaneously, usually by applying the various skills you’ve developed throughout your career to different types of work. For example, you could combine consulting with part-time work, teaching at a local college and freelance writing. You could use your speaking and facilitation skills to lead workshops at companies or educational institutions. You could even develop your own product or service. 

2. A Portfolio lifestyle involves a balanced lifestyle including earning your income from a variety of sources. For example, you might work on freelance contracts or as a part-time employee for several organisations, and perhaps also run a business.

  • In this way of working income is gained from several sources
  • It is popular with those who have specific skills that are in demand by different organisations.
  •  At different times you might combine self-employment with, for example, short-term contracts or part-time, temporary or project work.
  •  Each job adds skills and experience to your portfolio.
  •  This type of work allows flexibility and can also be secure.
  •  A balance can be struck between paid and unpaid work and an improved lifestyle

Working with several clients I have noticed that some attributes or qualities help to underpin success including : 

  •  some risk tolerance and courage,
  •  high self motivation and resilience , 
  •  adequate personal finances
  • curious an interested in continuous personal development ,
  • good interpersonal , self marketing and networking skills, 
  •  seeking appropriate support from others
  • willingness to take on new challenges and 
  • able to multi task.

“The quality of your life is proportional to the quality of the questions you ask?”

Anthony Robbins

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If you are considering a portfolio approach an effective initial stage is to reflect carefully and consider specific criteria:

  • What aspects of my personality  and values help me to be a good fit for specific components of my portfolio ?
  • What existing skills and experience should I capitalise on?
  • What interests or hobbies might I expand on or cultivate further?
  • What new education might I need to complete?
  •  What new skills or experience might I need if I want to include in my portfolio an area of interest or something totally new to me?
  •  How will I research and test different possibilities?
  •  What balance do I want between leisure,family,friends and work time ?
  •  What are my financial requirements  in order to support myself and my family?
  • What resources and support can I call on as I make this journey?
  •  What  financial investment might I need?
  •  What systems and infrastructure will I need in place? 
  •  Can I generate passive sources of income?

GUIDING  THOUGHT :   STOP ,THINK and then ACT when well informed – there are 168 hours in a week  ( and typically for one third of that we sleep!)  –  so how many of your  approximately 100 waking  hours will you spend on each component ?

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PROCESS

  • Consider the vision for your initial portfolio – What do you want more of and less of in your life?
  • Understand the requirements for each component
  • Analyse the gap between your current knowledge and skills and the portfolio component
  • Consider how to fill the gap ( Education , Training, Reading, Working in a similar business to learn the ropes ,Speaking to people working in that area , etc.)
  •  SELECT FROM OPTIONS DEVELOPED

An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory  – Engels

Having thought through and settled on at least some initial portfolio components you are ready to:

  • Research the enablers for that option
  •  Understand the time commitments involved
  • Estimate any costs involved and income generated  where appropriate
  • Develop an implementation plan
  • Move to implementation – learning as you do so

Action Process

Using the knowledge gained from your planning and preparation establish the components of your initial portfolio based on the best mix for you right now .

For example this could be any mix of components such as   :

  •  Own business ( wide range of possibilities)
  •  Franchise ( wide range of possibilities)
  • Non Executive Director
  •  Interim Management
  • Contract/Temporary work
  •  Consultancy
  •  Coaching in various fields
  •  Charity paid and unpaid work
  •  Voluntary work
  •  Magistrate
  •  Local Politics
  •  Trustee roles
  • Writing – technical /fiction

This is the secret – the repertoire. You have to try to consolidate your repertoire. It is a big step if you know how to do that.  Cecilia Bartoli

A portfolio approach implies an ongoing , flexible and evolving journey. The components of your portfolio can change and evolve. Consolidation, nurturing, sustaining and developing become essential drivers

Some components can be removed if they are not meeting your needs or criteria.

New components can be added as you learn more and discover new possibilities.

In this sense it is worth reviewing and evaluating progress at key stages to see what needs to change as well as being constantly curious and actively researching new possibilities.

View Peter Cobbe's profile on LinkedIn

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  • NOW ACCEPTING NEW CLIENTS : Coaching via Skype / Facetime / 1 to 1 meetingsMy career experience includes HR Director and senior executive roles in Barclays plc and Tesco plc leading major transformation and complex change programmes reporting at Board level .I have an MBA, BA and I am a member of the  Association for Coaching. I am an accredited coach with over 12 years of private client coaching experience and as an associate consultant with Penna (UK) dealing with career, life,executive and business coaching and counselling. I work in mentoring and coaching partnerships with executives to help achieve gains of importance to them.I help people of all ages, different cultures and job levels to understand more about themselves, their impact on others and how to develop across major dimensions in life.
    I respect the integrity and confidentiality of my clients building on their existing great skills and abilities and evolving enhanced self guidance : ” No one in the world was ever you before, with your particular gifts and abilities and possibilities.”Specialties: Holistic / systemic approach to coaching
  • Achieving a portfolio lifestyle
  • Remote coaching via Skype and Apple Facetime
  • Coaching for Executive performance /High Potential including C level
  • Senior Executive mentoring
  • First 100 days
  • Career Coaching/portfolio lifestyle
  • Coaching for powerful presentations
  • Life Coaching
  • Executive advice on staff insight surveys
  • Facilitating key meetings and C- level strategic retreats engaging around people decisions that flow from business choices
  • Business/HR Strategy ,Change Leadership
  • Communications strategy
  • Psychometrics,NLP,Emotional Intelligence
  • Confidence&Self Esteem
  • Creativity coaching
  • Independent Consulting propositions coaching
  • Non Executive director coaching
  • Business Report/White Paper writing
  • Graduate career coaching

Just a thought :

Five frogs are sitting on a log.
Four decide to jump off. How many are left? 

Answer: five. Why? Because there’s a difference between deciding and doing.

Mark Feldman

For a free exploratory discussion on 1 to 1 or GROUP learning/coaching sessions contact me on:

cobbep@gmail.com

or

via  my Linked In Profile

View Peter Cobbe's profile on LinkedIn

MAKING IMPACT IN THE FIRST 100 DAYS – some insights and a PLANNING APPROACH

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View Peter Cobbe's profile on LinkedIn

Some insights on making impact in the first 100 days and thereafter in a new role

  1. PROMOTE YOURSELF.Make a mental break from your old job. Prepare to take charge in the new one. Don’t assume that what has made you successful so far will in all situations continue to do so. The dangers of sticking with what you know, working hard at doing it, and missing new insights very real.
  1. ACCELERATE YOUR LEARNING.Climb the learning curve as fast as you can in your new organization. Understand drivers, markets, products, technologies, systems, and structures, as well as its culture and politics. It is a lot to absorb so be systematic and focused about deciding what you need to learn.
  1. CAREFULLY MATCH STRATEGY TO THE SITUATION. There are no universal rules for success in transitions. You need to diagnose the business situation accurately and clarify its challenges and opportunities. Consider four very different situations: launching a start-up, leading a turnaround, devising realignment, and sustaining a high-performing unit. You need to know what your unique situation looks like before you develop your action plan.
  1. SECURE EARLY WINS.Early victories build your credibility and create momentum. They create virtuous cycles that leverage organizational energy. In the first few weeks, you need to identify opportunities to build personal credibility. In the first 100 days, you need to identify ways to create value and improve business results. Take care to ensure any quick wins are part of the overall strategic intent and aim.
  1. NEGOTIATE SUCCESS.You need to figure out how to build a productive working relationship with your new boss and manage their expectations. No other relationship is more important. This means having a series of critical talks about the situation, expectations, style, resources, and your personal development. Crucially, it means developing and gaining consensus on your 100-day plan.
  1. ACHIEVE ALIGNMENT. The higher you rise in an organization, the more you have to play the role of organizational architect. This means working out whether the organization’s strategy is sound, bringing its structure into alignment with its strategy, and developing the systems and skills bases necessary to deliver strategic intent.
  1. BUILD YOUR TEAM.If you are inheriting a team, you will need to evaluate its members. Perhaps you need to restructure it to better meet demands of the situation. Your willingness to make tough early personnel calls and your capacity to select the right people for the right positions are among the most important drivers of success during your transition.
  1. CREATE COALITIONS.Your success will depend on your ability to influence people outside your direct line of control. Supportive alliances, both internal and external, will be necessary to achieve your goals.
  1. KEEP YOUR BALANCE.The risks of losing perspective, getting isolated, and making bad calls are ever present during transitions. The right advice-and-counsel network is an indispensable resource
  1. EXPEDITE EVERYONE. Finally, you need to help everyone else – direct reports, bosses, and peers – accelerate their own transitions. The quicker you can get your new direct reports up to speed, the more you will help your own performance.

The First 100 days – useful books

Career Development Books

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Some other  insights –  to consider your transition if  you are promoted into or take up a larger leadership role :

1.Reflect on the context of your transition from both your perspective and that of your key stakeholders.

2. Establish your initial set of priorities aligned with a full understanding of what others expect of you . Test your ideas,plans.thinking and straw models with others as part of achieving buy in.

3. Be clear about how you will control your agenda and allocate time and energy.

4. Build excellent relationships with your boss ,peers and key influencers. See this as developing an effective coalition to enable your agenda.

5.Consider how you will develop your direct reports and make any team changes.

6. Think through your communication plan including internal and external needs.

7.Seek and value feedback.

8. Establish personal ground rules to balance work and out of work time.

9.Make sure you have good external and internal intelligence sources to inform your thinking,strategy and implementation

DETAILED PLANNING INSIGHTS

A Small Example of part of a comprehensive approach:

Category Importance to success in role  :

 Low –Med –High

My objective for my 100 day plan
TRANSFORMATION
Strategy development/implementation
Innovation/Creativity
Project management
Programme management
Business case development
Effective Analysis/ synthesis/generating options
TRANSACTIONAL EXCELLENCE
Operational Excellence
Planning/workflow management
Project management
Administration excellence
Data management/production
External relationship building/management
COMMERCIAL  IMPACT
Sales and Revenue growth
Cost control /Reduction
Budget management
Business case delivery
PEOPLE SKILLS
Customer /client service excellence
Team work
Team leadership
Multi- team leadership
Influencing senior managers/executives
Internal  influence: networking and coalition building
External  influence:networking/coalition building
COMMUNICATION EXCELLENCE
Report writing /writing skills
Speaking/presenting skills
OTHER
Specific technical skills :
Personal development aim
OTHER requirement:

 

 

  •   Use the checklist to consider the key features and required achievements/deliverables for you role .Add any features missing specific to the role.

  • Rate each feature in terms of importance – LOW /MEDIUM /HIGH

  •  Produce a clear objective for each medium and high scoring category

  • Agree the objectives with your manager/leader

  • Track progress


PORTFOLIO CAREER INSIGHTS

Emotional-Intelligence1

Typical definitions of the portfolio approach include :

1. A portfolio career is the pursuit of more than one income source simultaneously, usually by applying the various skills you’ve developed throughout your career to different types of work. For example, you could combine consulting with part-time work, teaching at a local college and freelance writing. You could use your speaking and facilitation skills to lead workshops at companies or educational institutions. You could even develop your own product or service.

2. A Portfolio lifestyle involves a balanced lifestyle including earning your income from a variety of sources. For example, you might work on freelance contracts or as a part-time employee for several organisations, and perhaps also run a business.

  • In this way of working income is gained from several sources
  • It is popular with those who have specific skills that are in demand by different organisations.
  • At different times you might combine self-employment with, for example, short-term contracts or part-time, temporary or project work.
  • Each job adds skills and experience to your portfolio.
  • This type of work allows flexibility and can also be secure.
  • A balance can be struck between paid and unpaid work and an improved lifestyle

Working with several clients I have noticed that some attributes or qualities help to underpin success  including :

  • some risk tolerance and courage,
  • high self motivation and resilience ,
  • adequate personal finances
  • curious an interested in continuous personal development ,
  • good interpersonal , self marketing and networking skills,
  • seeking appropriate support from others
  • willingness to take on new challenges and
  • able to multi task.

Join the associated Linked In Group

Read the Free Portfolio Lifestyle magazine on FLIPBOARD

For coaching on all dimensions of developing and achieving a portfolio career/lifestyle contact me :
Peter Cobbe Coaching

This is the secret – the repertoire. You have to try to consolidate your repertoire. It is a big step if you know how to do that.  Cecilia Bartoli

A portfolio approach implies an ongoing , flexible and evolving journey. The components of your portfolio can change and evolve. Consolidation, nurturing,sustaining and developing become essential drivers

Some components can be removed if they are not meeting your needs or criteria.

New components can be added as you learn more and discover new possibilities.

In this sense it is worth reviewing and evaluating progress at key stages to see what needs to change as well as being constantly curious and actively researching new possibilities.

When considering a portfolio approach it can be useful to refer to Stephen Coveys thinking about effective people since it provides useful insights :

SEVEN HABITS OF EFFECTIVE PEOPLE by Stephen Covey

The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective Peo…

Stephen R. Covey

Best Price £3.00

or Buy New £7.69

Each chapter is dedicated to one of the habits, which are represented by the following imperatives:

The First Three Habits surround moving from dependence to independence (i.e. self mastery)

  • Habit 1: Be Proactive

Synopsis: Take initiative in life by realising your decisions (and how they align with life’s principles) are the primary determining factor for effectiveness in your life. Taking responsibility for your choices and the subsequent consequences that follow.

  • Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind

Synopsis: Self-discover and clarify your deeply important character values and life goals. Envisioning the ideal characteristics for each of your various roles and relationships in life.

  • Habit 3: Put First Things First

Synopsis: Planning, prioritising, and executing your week’s tasks based on importance rather than urgency. Evaluating if your efforts exemplify your desired character values, propel you towards goals, and enrich the roles and relationships elaborated in Habit 2.

 

The Next Three are to do with Interdependence (i.e. working with others)

  • Habit 4: Think Win-Win

Synopsis: Genuinely striving for mutually beneficial solutions or agreements in your relationships. Valuing and respecting people by understanding a “win” for all is ultimately a better long-term resolution than if only one person in the situation had gotten his way.

  • Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, then to be Understood

Synopsis: Using empathetic listening to be genuinely influenced by a person, which compels them to reciprocate the listening, take an open mind to being influenced by you, which creates an atmosphere of caring, respect, and positive problem solving.

  • Habit 6: Synergise

Synopsis: Combining the strengths of people through positive teamwork, so as to achieve goals no one person could have done alone. How to yield the most prolific performance out of a group of people through encouraging meaningful contribution, and modeling inspirational and supportive leadership.

 

The Last habit relates to self-rejuvenation;

  • Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw

Synopsis: The balancing and renewal of your resources, energy, and health to create a sustainable long-term effective lifestyle.

FOR DETAILED INFORMATION AND INSIGHTS ON ESTABLISHING A PORTFOLIO CAREER /LIFESTYLE

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CVS AND INTERVIEWS – ENSURING RESONANCE

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DEVELOPING  CUSTOMISED CVs and PREPARING FOR INTERVIEW

See below a useful matrix or table to evaluate roles of interest and prepare a tailored CV that resonates with role requirements and helps with preparing for interview :

Some examples of skill types/experience required  are shown for context but you should include

the ones specific to the role

Skills and Achievement Mapping against role/job description to prepare for interview

THEY WANT : Skills type ( generic ones shown but  you add  the specific role requirements)plus experience
YOU HAVE THESE SKILLS & Experience that maps to their need Your related achievements – evidence of skills in action
Strategic

·         Establishing new vision/shaping strategy

  • Bringing the vision to life
  • Innovation /Creativity
  • Thought leadership
  • Big Picture thinking
  • Use of strategic models and excellence/best practice
  • Dealing with complexity and risk

 

Interpersonal

·         Political acumen

  • Spheres of influence
  • Relationship building
  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Customer service excellence
  • Mandate winning
  • Leadership ability ( clarity, purpose, direction/winning hearts and minds/gravitas)
  • Equal amongst peers
  • Advanced communication skills
Analytical ,Synthesis

·         Use of models to analyse complex data

  • Research, Synthesise/interpret information and generate weighted options/recommendations

 

Process/systems

·         Process –continuous improvement / step change

  • Development of new systems/policies/procedures

 

Commercial

·         P and L influence (investment/ revenue growth/cost management)

  • Budget management
  • Business case construction
  • Product and services development

 

Implementation

·         Defining projects and programmes

  • Securing and mobilising resources
  • Organisational skills
  • Making it happen

 

 

Technical

·         In depth specific technical skills

10 GOLDEN RULES OF INTERVIEWS

Impress at your next job interview by following these 10 golden rules says Ros Toynbee, director of The Career Coach…

  1. Do your research – You can’t do enough research on the organisation first. Read the trade and financial press, not just the website. Quiz your recruiter and/or people who work for the organisation if you can do that. Your answers – and your questions – should reflect that you have done your homework. That’s what really impresses, as does showing commercial awareness in the current climate.
  2. Prepare properly – Successful interviewing is 80% preparation. Prepare for the three key areas which all interview questions fall into: 1. Can you do this bit of the job (or learn it fast)? 2. Do we like you? Will you fit in here? 3. Will you be motivated by this job, our company?
  3. Understand the role – Have an answer to the question ‘Tell me about yourself’. Identify three things that you think reflect the purpose of the role well and what you bring to it. Be ready to have examples to back up your claim.
  4. Show competence – Most interviews these days are competency based interviews which means they want to hear your stories of how in the past you have demonstrated that particular skill – and at which level. They want to assess your track record to predict how well you will perform here.
  5. Know your value – Know why you want this job and be willing to explain it not just in terms of what it will do for you, but the VALUE you look forward to creating for the organisation.
  6. Rehearse answers – Use the ‘SCO’ formula to tell your stories. ‘S’ for situation (the problem you/the company had); ‘C’ for contribution (what you did, with respect for what you did as part of a team); ‘O’ for outcome (the results you created for the team, company, clients). Go through the job description closely and write out as many examples as you can for each skill, quality or competency listed. Rehearse with a friend or in front of a mirror and tweak until you have said it concisely and well.
  7. Be honest – Have authentic answers ready for the tough questions they might ask you, about gaps on your CV or why you are leaving your current organisation. Reassure, then move on. Be honest about redundancies.
  8. Bide your time – If you don’t understand a question or suspect there is a concern underlying it, ask for further clarification. It’ll buy you time and ensure you answer it properly. Eg. “can you give me an example?”
  9. Ask key questions – Have great, even challenging, questions to ask them at the end. Remember you are two professionals working to see if you are both suitable for each other.
  10. End strongly – Don’t be afraid to ask for the role at the end if you want it and to ask what the next steps will be.

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NOW ACCEPTING NEW CLIENTS : Coaching via Skype / Facetime / 1 to 1 meetings

cobbep@gmail.com

My career experience includes HR Director and senior executive roles in Barclays plc and Tesco plc leading major transformation and complex change programmes reporting at Board level .I have an MBA, BA and I am a member of the CIPD and Association for Coaching. I am an accredited coach with over 12 years of private client coaching experience and as an associate consultant with Penna (UK) dealing with career, life,executive and business coaching and counselling. I work in mentoring and coaching partnerships with executives to help achieve gains of importance to them.I help people of all ages, different cultures and job levels to understand more about themselves, their impact on others and how to develop across major dimensions in life.
I respect the integrity and confidentiality of my clients building on their existing great skills and abilities and evolving enhanced self guidance : ” No one in the world was ever you before, with your particular gifts and abilities and possibilities.”

Specialties: Holistic / systemic approach to coaching
Remote coaching via Skype and Apple Facetime

HIGH IMPACT CV AND INTERVIEW SKILLS
Coaching for Executive performance /High Potential including C level
First 100 days
Career Coaching/portfolio lifestyle
Coaching for powerful presentations
Life Coaching
Executive advice on staff insight surveys
Facilitating key meetings and C- level strategic retreats engaging around people decisions that flow from business choices
Business/HR Strategy ,Change Leadership
Communications strategy
Psychometrics,NLP,Emotional Intelligence
Confidence&Self Esteem
Creativity coaching
Independent Consulting propositions coaching
Non Executive director coaching
Business Report/White Paper writing
Graduate career coaching

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IMPROVING THINKING SKILLS AND ABILITY

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We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.  Albert Einstein

When working with clients it often emerges that the quality of their thinking is causing blocks to desired progress. Our focus then switches to better understanding how the client processes information and makes decisions to help move forward.

A THINKING LEVELS PERSPECTIVE

Common to all subjects and levels is the concept of higher and lower order thinking skills. Higher order skills are considered to be more complex than lower order skills. The triangle model provides a useful way to visualise the relationships between some of the key skills. The complexity of the skills increases from the base to the top of the list below

Although the skills are arranged in a hierarchical way, they are all important. Much of the thinking we do involves a mixture of skills at different levels. We develop and use them simultaneously, for example, when we are solving problems and analysing case studies.

It is possible to extend and develop higher order thinking skills – to develop thinking at a qualitatively higher level, to move into a higher gear.

The specific skills in each area are shown in this list  here:

Evaluate           judge, appraise, choose, rate, assess, estimate, value, measure, criticise

Synthesise      formulate, teach, design, develop, re-define, propose, create

Analyse           distinguish, differentiate, calculate, debate, relate, compare, experiment, contrast, examine

Apply             demonstrate, schedule, operate, sketch, employ, use, practice

Comprehend  restate, identify, discuss, locate, recognise, review, explain, tell, clarify

Know             recall, define, state, list, repeat, name, recount, present, find

2. REVIEWING SOME ASPECTS OF YOUR THINKING

 

Activity 1 Complete a simple audit covering the ways you think

Personal statements Always Sometimes Never
I see myself as open and fair minded.
I am curious to find out about things.
I am really interested in a specific subject
I relate ideas to previous knowledge, experience and wider contexts
I look for patterns and relationships between things.
I like to ask questions and not accept things at face value
I don’t rush to make judgements or have opinions on things.
I like to look at all sides of an argument or issues before coming to a conclusion
I am persistent and like to get to the bottom of things.
I don’t like situations where people just state opinions without giving reasons or evidence
I like to find things out for myself and come to my own conclusions on things
I like to be creative and innovative.
I take time to reflect on things/my own thinking
I like clarity, order and precision
I think strategically about things
Any statement you wish to add
Any statement you wish to add

Activity 2 Use the table again to map where you would like to be and consider the gapsand then reflect on any learning gained using the table below

Reflection – what I have noticed? Action – what I will do?
What have you learned in terms of potential limitations?Do the limitations matter right now in your life?/if so consider next step actions……
What have you noticed in terms of strengths?Do you want to develop these strengths further?Consider what you might do to achieve this

 

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. A person cannot help but be in awe when they contemplate the mystery of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one merely tries to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.

(Albert Einstein)

  1. Questions to develop skills at different levels of thinking
LEVEL OF THINKING EXAMPLES OF QUESTIONS
Knowledge and understanding What? Who? When?What is an example of x?What is meant by …..?

What is another way of explaining..?

Is this an example of …?

Can I describe x in my own words?

Application How is it used?What does it relate to?In what situations …?
Analysis Why? How?What is the reason for ….. ?What evidence is there to support the conclusion?

What are the causes of …?

How do … fit together?

Synthesis If x happens, then what next?What does the theory predict will happen?What are my own conclusions on the basis of the information available?

How does x relate to y?

Evaluation Is this good or not and why?Is this reasonable or not and why?
  1. GIVING STRUCTURE TO THINKING

 

Two common thinking problems are: a feeling of not being able to ‘see the wood for the trees’, and difficulty in being logical and orderly. The key to solving them is being able to think about ideas and information in a conceptual and systematic way so that you have ways to structure your thinking.

This can involve:

  • looking at the broader context
  • developing mental models and frameworks to hang ideas and information on
  • Being able to distinguish relative importance and seeing patterns and relationships.

Other ways might be based on:

  • chronology,
  • complexity,
  • spatial organisation,
  • positive and negative aspects,
  • pros and cons,
  • familiar and unfamiliar,
  • from top to bottom of an organisational structure.

In some cases, the component parts of something work together to form a system, for example arteries, veins and capillaries work together to form the blood circulatory system in the body.

  1. USEFUL THINKING MODELS

 

USING DANCE

 

For example, the DANCE system (Rose and Nicholl, 1997) is one of many tools for solving problems.

D – Define and clarify what the problem really is (sometimes it is not initially clear). What are your goals?

A – Think of a range of alternative ways of solving the problem.

N – Narrow down the range of possible solutions to leave the best.

C – Choose the ideal solution and check what the consequences might be.

E – Effect action using the best solution.

 

 

 

USING VISUAL TOOLS

 

Organising thought can be assisted greatly by the use of visual tools.

These can include:

  • diagrams,
  • mind-maps,
  • tables,
  • graphs, time lines,
  • flow charts,
  • sequence diagrams,
  • decision trees
  • story boards
  • rich pictures
  • or other visual representations.

The process of making visual representations can itself involve using and developing a range of thinking skills, particularly higher order skills. So, whether you need the resulting product or not they can be worth doing. However, the resulting product can also provide an effective way of communicating your thinking to others. In fact, sometimes it can be very hard not to use a diagram – drawing or referring to a map, for example, makes it much easier to give directions.

Mind-mapping can be a particularly powerful visual tool for shaping thought. The basic principle here is to note down the central topic or idea in the centre of a piece of paper and work outwards adding the points which flow from and connect to it. It is particularly helpful for seeing the different

levels of thought.  Here is a mind map example by someone planning to write an essay on memory.

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER

 .At this stage, you may find it useful to consider how ideas like these can be put together in ways that will help you when you engage in activities such as reading, writing, speaking and listening.

Here is a checklist to use when making judgements about things that you hear, see and experience.

  • Who is speaking or writing?
  • What is their point of view or perspective?
  • What ideas and information are presented and how were they obtained?
  • Are there unsupported assertions?
  • Are reasons or evidence provided?
  • Are the reasons and evidence given relevant?
  • Is the method used to find the evidence sound?
  • Is the evidence correct or valid?
  • What assumptions have been made?
  • What is fact and what is opinion?
  • What are the implicit and explicit values?
  • Are there unreasonable generalisations?
  • What has been omitted?
  • How was the conclusion reached?
  • Is the conclusion reasonable?
  • What other perspectives or points of view could there be?
  • You may be able to think of more points to add to this list.

 IMG_4817

RESOURCES -more insights

Listening Skills

Empathy

Thinking Errors

Thinking Skills

We Are Our Thoughts

9 Mind blowing epiphanies

Critical Thinking – check your style and reasoning

10 Things To Stop Doing Now

Developing Resilience

SEE MORE ON IMPROVED THINKING IN MY FLIPBOARD MAGAZINE

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT : OPEN UNIVERSITY- OPEN LEARNING- DEVELOPING THINKING SKILLS

CRITICAL THINKING OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM – Scientific American

IMG_1573 Peter Cobbe Coaching

  • NOW ACCEPTING NEW CLIENTS : Coaching via Skype / Facetime / 1 to 1 meetingsMy career experience includes HR Director and senior executive roles in Barclays plc and Tesco plc leading major transformation and complex change programmes reporting at Board level .I have an MBA, BA and I am a member of the CIPD and Association for Coaching. I am an accredited coach with over 12 years of private client coaching experience and as an associate consultant with Penna (UK) dealing with career, life,executive and business coaching and counselling. I work in mentoring and coaching partnerships with executives to help achieve gains of importance to them.I help people of all ages, different cultures and job levels to understand more about themselves, their impact on others and how to develop across major dimensions in life.
    I respect the integrity and confidentiality of my clients building on their existing great skills and abilities and evolving enhanced self guidance : ” No one in the world was ever you before, with your particular gifts and abilities and possibilities.”Specialties: Holistic / systemic approach to coaching
    Remote coaching via Skype and Apple Facetime
    Coaching for Executive performance /High Potential including C level
    First 100 days
    Career Coaching/portfolio lifestyle
    Coaching for powerful presentations
    Life Coaching
    Executive advice on staff insight surveys
    Facilitating key meetings and C- level strategic retreats engaging around people decisions that flow from business choices
    Business/HR Strategy ,Change Leadership
    Communications strategy
    Psychometrics,NLP,Emotional Intelligence
    Confidence&Self Esteem
    Creativity coaching
    Independent Consulting propositions coaching
    Non Executive director coaching
    Business Report/White Paper writing
    Graduate career coaching

Just a thought :

Five frogs are sitting on a log.
Four decide to jump off. How many are left? 

Answer: five. Why? Because there’s a difference between deciding and doing.

Mark Feldman

For a free exploratory discussion on 1 to 1 or Group Session coaching contact me on:

cobbep@gmail.com

or

via  my Linked In Profile

THE PRACTICE MODEL FOR COACHING

39519-treephilosophy

PRACTICE MODEL

A SOLUTION FOCUSED APPROACH
STEP QUESTIONS/STATEMENTS CLIENT ACTIONS
1. Problem identification What is the issue or concern that you would like to discuss?

What would you like to change?

Are there any exceptions when it is not a problem/ issue?

How will we know when the situation ahs improved?

On a scale of 0 -10 how near are you now to resolving the problem ( where 10 is fully solved) ?

If you woke up tomorrow and this issue/problem no longer existed what would you notice that was different?

2. Realistic, relevant goals ( SMART) What do you want to achieve?

Lets develop SMART goals.

3. Alternative solutions generated What are your options?

Lets note them down.

4. Consideration of consequences What could happen?

How useful is each possible solution?

Set this up using life dimensions and rating 0 to 10 where 10 is extremely useful.

5. Target most feasible solution Having evaluated possible solutions what is the most feasible/practical solution?
6. Implementation of Chosen solutions Lets break down the solution into manageable steps so that it can be implemented

Now go and do it

7. Evaluation How successful was it?

Rating scale 0-10 where 10 is totally successful

What can be learnt?

What should we do next or can we finish coaching now?

SEE ASSOCIATION FOR COACHING PAPER BY STEPHEN PALMER

10 Interview Tips

IMG_4819

Also Enjoy  the FREE Flipboard Magazine :  Achieving your Next job and Career Progression

10 interview tips.

  1. Create a ‘to be’ list

Entry is everything so think about how you want to “show up” at the interview. What qualities do you want to demonstrate? Decide in advance how you intend to come across – for example as confident, reliable, and dynamic.

Write a ‘to be’ list and identify ways you can transmit the qualities you want to broadcast. For example, to show confidence, make sure you can talk fluidly about your strengths and successes without bragging.

  1. Make it more of a conversation

The more you can make the interview a two-way exchange, the more likely you are to relax. Make the most of this opportunity to gather information, get to know your prospective colleagues and catch a glimpse of the way they do things.

Come to the interview with some insightful questions prepared. Don’t trot out the same old questions that every candidate is likely to ask (such as what the opportunities for promotion are). Read the company’s website and research their performance, whether on the stock market or the league tables, so that your lines of inquiry are on point.

  1. Be comfortable talking about money

Even if the job comes with an advertised salary, you may be asked what your salary expectations are. Anticipate this question and, off-line, practise saying your answer out loud. If you want to be paid more than the ad suggests, be prepared to give your reasons as you’ll need to justify your request.

Do some market research and find out what the going rates are. Check out how much equivalent jobs at other organisations pay by looking at job adverts or online salary surveys. Having this data at your fingertips will increase your confidence at striking a deal that feels good to you. It will also help you to come up with an original response to that interview classic – “Why do you want to work for us?”

  1. Know your strengths/brand

Be prepared to articulate your ‘unique selling points’. Give this question serious consideration. Think about your own combination of strengths – for example, are you that rare individual who is creative, proactive and reliable.

Before you go to the interview, complete this sentence, ‘I am someone who…’ Write down your answer and reflect on your response. Think about feedback you’ve had from friends, family and other people who have affirmed your sense of who you are.

 

  1. Be prepared to talk about your weaknesses

 

Anticipate being asked about your shortcomings. This is a sensitive subject that needs a careful response. Don’t be insincere, such as saying you’re a perfectionist if you’re not. Be honest about your areas of development. If attention to detail is not your strong suit, say so and then indicate how you plan to address this. For example, you could say that at times you might ask a colleague to check over a critical document to make sure that you’ve attended to all the detail.

  1. Value the non-verbal

 

When you talk face-to-face, it’s not just about the words you use. We’re social animals so body language, eye gaze and gestures all play their part. If you find it hard to look someone in the eye, you risk being judged as untrustworthy or as having something to hide. Sit in an upright posture without leaning forward – you don’t want to come across as a people pleaser. Do your best to sit still without fidgeting as this will make you look nervous. Hold the other person’s eye gaze until just before they look away to send the message that you can hold your own without being aggressive.

  1. Tailor how much you talk

 

It’s easy to fall into the trap of talking too much during an interview. Sometimes a question needs only a short response. Develop the ability to be concise. If a longer response is needed, you could structure your answer by indicating, for example, that there are three points to consider. Help the other person to follow what you say by using some signposting such as ‘firstly .’, ‘secondly…’ and ‘finally…’.

Varying the length of your input will help to make the interview more of a conversation. Listen carefully to what the interviewer has to say and, if needs be, check your understanding before answering.

  1. Have a get-out line

 

Think through how you’ll respond to a question you don’t know the answer to. Instead of fudging it, have something prepared. You could say, for example, ‘Please can we come back to that question as I’d like a little more time to gather my thoughts?’

Do your best to stay composed. If you suddenly freeze, take a couple of deep breaths and ask them to repeat the question.

  1. Ask for feedback

 

Towards the end of the interview, say that you’re keen to get some feedback on how you did (if this hasn’t been offered). Find out how who to follow up with and get their contact details. Do this in a respectful way so that you come across as keen to learn without being pushy.

10. Personal psychology – cultivate an attitude of ‘You win some, you lose some’

 

Have the intention to get the job without having the expectation that you will. Go into the interview with some degree of humility – arrogance is a big turn off for any employer.

Decide ahead of time that you’ll accept the outcome, whether you are successful or not. If you get turned down, be philosophical and resolve to reap the benefits of the experience next time you’re faced with an interview. If you do get offered the job – congratulations! – Time to go out and celebrate!

See more great interview insights here and other useful hints here

BRIDGE WEB

Situational leadership insights

PLUMS WEB

Another useful leadership model that can provide coaching insights in context for some clients:

Situational Leadership Model

This is a term that can be applied generically to a style of leadership, but that also refers to a recognised, and useful, leadership model.

In simple terms, a situational leader is one who can adopt different leadership styles depending on the situation. Most of us do this anyway in our dealings with other people: we try not to get angry with a nervous colleague on their first day, we chase up tasks with some people more than others because we know they’ll forget otherwise.

Ken Blanchard, the management guru best known for the “One Minute Manager” series, and Paul Hersey created a model for Situational Leadership in the late 1960’s that allows you to analyse the needs of the situation you’re dealing with, and then adopt the most appropriate leadership style. It’s proved popular with managers over the years because it passes the two basic tests of such models: it’s simple to understand, and it works in most environments for most people. The model doesn’t just apply to people in leadership or management positions: we all lead others at work and at home.

LEADERSHIP BEHAVIOUR

Blanchard and Hersey characterised leadership style in terms of the amount of direction and of support that the leader gives to his or her followers, and so created a simple grid:

Directing Leaders define the roles and tasks of the ‘follower’, and supervise them closely. Decisions are made by the leader and announced, so communication is largely one-way.

Coaching Leaders still define roles and tasks, but seeks ideas and suggestions from the follower. Decisions remain the leader’s prerogative, but communication is much more two-way.

Supporting Leaders pass day-to-day decisions, such as task allocation and processes, to the follower. The leader facilitates and takes part in decisions, but control is with the follower.

Delegating Leaders are still involved in decisions and problem-solving, but control is with the follower. The follower decides when and how the leader will be involved.

Effective leaders are versatile in being able to move around the grid according to the situation, so there is no one right style. However, we tend to have a preferred style, and in applying Situational Leadership you need to know which one that is for you.

situational_leadership

 

DEVELOPMENT LEVEL

Clearly the right leadership style will depend very much on the person being led – the follower – and Blanchard and Hersey extended their model to include the Development Level of the follower. They said that the leader’s style should be driven by the Competence and Commitment of the follower, and came up with four levels:

D4
High Competence
High Commitment

Experienced at the job, and comfortable with their own ability to do it well. May even be more skilled than the leader.

D3
High Competence
Variable Commitment

Experienced and capable, but may lack the confidence to go it alone, or the motivation to do it well / quickly

D2
Some Competence
Low Commitment

May have some relevant skills, but won’t be able to do the job without help. The task or the situation may be new to them.

D1
Low Competence
Low Commitment

Generally lacking the specific skills required for the job in hand, and lacks any confidence and / or motivation to tackle it.

Development Levels are also situational. I might be generally skilled, confident and motivated in my job, but would still drop into Level D1 when faced, say, with a task requiring skills I don’t possess. For example, lots of managers are D4 when dealing with the day-to-day running of their department, but move to D1 or D2 when dealing with a sensitive employee issue.

SITUATIONAL LEADERSHIP

Blanchard and Hersey said that the Leadership Style (S1 – S4) of the leader must correspond to the Development level (D1 – D4) of the follower – and it’s the leader who adapts.

For example, a new person joins your team and you’re asked to help them through the first few days. You sit them in front of a PC, show them a pile of invoices that need to be processed today, and push off to a meeting. They’re at level D1, and you’ve adopted S4. Everyone loses because the new person feels helpless and demotivated, and you don’t get the invoices processed.

On the other hand, you’re handing over to an experienced colleague before you leave for a holiday. You’ve listed all the tasks that need to be done, and a set of instructions on how to carry out each one. They’re at level D4, and you’ve adopted S1. The work will probably get done, but not the way you expected, and your colleague despises you for treating him like an idiot.

But swap the situations and things get better. Leave detailed instructions and a checklist for the new person, and they’ll thank you for it. Give your colleague a quick chat and a few notes before you go on holiday, and everything will be fine.

By adopting the right style to suit the follower’s development level, work gets done, relationships are built up, and most importantly, the follower’s development level will rise to D4, to everyone’s benefit.

SITUATIONAL LEADERSHIP MODEL SUMMARY

The situational leadership model is founded on the belief that real leadership means managing people fairly for mutually rewarding and productive purposes and has nothing to do with manipulation – taking unfair advantage of or influencing others for self-interest, or making people feel uncomfortable.

It proposes that motivating, influencing and controlling people toward accomplishment of planned objectives requires 3 important skills:

1. Understanding past behaviour

2. Predicting future behaviour

3. Directing, changing and controlling behaviour.

From this perspective research studies indicate that effective leaders can be engaged in different types of behaviour: Task behaviour and Relationship behaviour.

Task behaviour provides guidance and direction – the leader clearly spells out duties and responsibilities to an individual or group about everything.

Relationship behaviour emphasises two-way communication with followers and exchanging information with them. This type tends to be more non-verbal than task behaviour.

Synonyms of relationship behaviour are listening,supporting, facilitating, and encouraging.

Some good leaders manage to combine both types of behaviour in their work, though all of them have different leadership styles.

Leadership style is defined as the leader’s patterns of behaviour including both words and actions as perceived by others.

Situational Leadership theory considers 4 leadership styles:

· High task, low relationship behaviour (the leader provides specific instructions and supervises followers closely, sometimes it’s called “telling”)

· High task, high relationship behaviour (the leader explains decisions and provides followers with opportunities for clarification “selling”)

· High relationship, low task behaviour (the leader shares ideas with followers and facilitates decision making “participating”)

· Low relationship, high task behaviour (the leader turns over responsibility for decisions and implementation to followers “delegating”)

situational_leadership

 SEE MORE GREAT INSIGHTS ON LEADERSHIP ON MY FLIPBOARD MAGAZINE LEADERSHIP

For  customised coaching on leadership skills and personal development contact me – cobbep@coachingcosmos.com

For customised leadership coaching  and free exploratory chat please contact me – cobbep@coachingcosmos.com
NOW ACCEPTING NEW CLIENTS : Coaching via Skype / Facetime / 1 to 1 meetings

My career experience includes HR Director and senior executive roles in Barclays plc and Tesco plc leading major transformation and complex change programmes reporting at Board level .I have an MBA, BA and I am a member of the CIPD and Association for Coaching. I am an accredited coach with over 12 years of private client coaching experience and as an associate consultant with Penna (UK) dealing with career, life,executive and business coaching and counselling. I work in mentoring and coaching partnerships with executives to help achieve gains of importance to them.I help people of all ages, different cultures and job levels to understand more about themselves, their impact on others and how to develop across major dimensions in life.

I respect the integrity and confidentiality of my clients building on their existing great skills and abilities and evolving enhanced self guidance : ” No one in the world was ever you before, with your particular gifts and abilities and possibilities.”

Specialties:

  • Holistic / systemic approach to coaching
  • Remote coaching via Skype and Apple Facetime
  • Coaching for Executive performance /High Potential including C level
  • First 100 days
  • Career Coaching/portfolio lifestyle
  • Coaching for powerful presentations
  • Life Coaching
  • Executive advice on staff insight surveys
  • Facilitating key meetings and C- level strategic retreats engaging around people decisions that flow from business choices
  • Business/HR Strategy ,Change Leadership
  • Communications strategy
  • Psychometrics,NLP,Emotional Intelligence
  • Confidence&Self Esteem
  • Creativity coaching
  • Independent Consulting propositions coaching
  • Non Executive director coaching
  • Business Report/White Paper writing
  • Graduate career coaching

Just a thought :
Five frogs are sitting on a log.Four decide to jump off. How many are left? 
Answer: five. Why? Because there’s a difference between deciding and doing.
Mark Feldman