Tag Archives: Outplacement

How to Handle a Bad Boss: Strategies for Managing Upwards

One of the main reasons that workers become unhappy at work is bad management. A bad boss can turn even a good working environment into an uncomfortable and unhappy workplace. They are in a position of power, you however are not powerless, BUT you do need to take responsibility to speak up in an attempt to change the situation.

An essential strategy is to Speak Up: Having a frank conversation with your boss about the problem in a calm, and professional manner can help you work towards resolving it. The way in which you approach the conversation will be dependent on your relationship. Yes, there are bosses who are inherently bad and misuse their position of power but there are also bosses who have lost their way and are behaving out of character, and there are bosses who are unaware of the impact of their behaviour. The key thing is to prepare, and to approach it from an objective standpoint. To do this you need to:

Put yourself in their shoes to understand how they see the world and the workplace, to help with this consider:
What they’re passionate about.
What keeps them up at night.
What challenges they’re facing.
What they’d love to do more of/less of on a daily basis.

Plan what you’re going to say:
Be clear on the points you want to get across, and the overall objective you want to achieve from the meeting.

Be prepared for obstacles/objections:
Arrange a time to talk, keep it brief and to the point. Some bosses want to know the agenda before the meeting, other don’t, work with their preferences.
Anticipate their reaction/argument/defence – having put yourself in their shoes and planning what you need to say, you’ll be fore-armed to deal with this.

The important thing is to speak up and give your boss a chance to respond. Speaking up rather than cowering in silence for fear of an awkward conversation takes courage, but you owe that to yourself and your boss. Having a genuine desire to work collaboratively to make things work better can open a door to a new level of respect and trust. A door that will remain permanently closed otherwise.

Evolving Careers Players can help you to mange and develop your career, whether that’s managing upwards or navigating this ever-changing market place. We deliver 121 career coaching, group learning and development and outplacement services. We devise community forum theatre, corporate drama workshops and real-play scenarios. http://www.evolvingcareersplayers.com Get in touch to discuss your needs: carmel@evolvingcareersplayers.com

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Brainstorming Techniques for the Creative Mind

Role-Storming is a brainstorming technique to encourage group members to take on other people’s identities while brainstorming. This reduces the inhibitions that many people feel when sharing their ideas with a group, and it helps people come up with ideas that they may not have otherwise considered, because they’re considering them from someone else’s perspective.

It’s a useful technique for #CorporateDramaRolePlay for developing problem solving skills.

Begin by presenting the problem to be solved to the group. It need not be a problem directly related to their work, in fact its probably even more beneficial to have a generic problem, because this demonstrates the transferability of problem solving skills which can be taken back to the workplace and applied to real problems.

Step 1. Brainstorm obvious ideas by conducting a regular brainstorming session with your group. Not only will this generate some good initial ideas, it will also highlight more obvious ideas. This leaves the group free to expand their thinking and push boundaries in later steps.

Step 2. Identify Roles: Ask each group member to think of someone they know – alive or dead, who they admire and respect for their problem solving skills. Ideally, they should know enough about them to take on their identity for a short time. The person they choose can be anyone, so long as it’s a person not in the current group.* Its best for it not to be someone the rest of the group knows.

Step 3. Get Into Character: For each role, allow group members a few minutes to get into character. ‘Hot Seat’ (put them on the spot with quick fired questions) using these questions to help with this:
• How does this person see the world?
• What is this person’s personality or attitude likely to be?
• How would this person solve problems?

Make an effort to support each member to get into the persona of the character: the more deeply
they understand this person’s feelings, worldview, and motivations, the better they can use this
perspective to generate good ideas.

Step 4. Brainstorm in Character: Present the same problem to the group and ask them to brainstorm in their chosen character.

Step 5. Repeat the exercise with as many different identities as you need, so that you can generate enough good ideas.

Evolving Careers Players can help you in developing creative and imaginative solutions to your problem solving skills. We deliver 121 career coaching, group learning and development and outplacement services. We devise community forum theatre, corporate drama workshops and role-play scenarios. http://www.evolvingcareersplayers.com  Get in touch to discuss your needs: carmel@evolvingcareersplayers.com

Top Ten Toughest Interview Questions Answered

Question Number 1

What is your greatest weakness?

This question is checking self-awareness and can come in many different guises e.g. ‘Describe something you should start doing, do more of, less of.’ It is asking you to honestly appraise yourself. To achieve this your answer needs to be personalised. A good way to do this is to consider it in terms of development needs and areas of improvement. It’s actually good to demonstrate you don’t have it all figured out yet and that you take a reflective approach to understand what you need to strive towards.

Your answer needs to be relevant to the role you’re interviewing for. In this current competitive environment to have been invited along to interview it is reasonable that you have demonstrated you have the ability to perform the essential elements of the role. You need to focus your answer on the ‘desirable’ elements, which may have been made explicit in the job description but you can support your answer even more strongly by demonstrating your ability to understand between the lines. Describe something you should start doing, something that you can strive towards that will also have a positive impact on the role, the team and the organisation.

The important thing is not to try to ‘spin’ it by turning a weakness into a strength but to own it. It is however ok to support your answer by relating it to an area of weakness in a previous role and what you did to overcome this, the impact it had and the learning you took from it.

Evolving Careers Players can help you through your interview process. We deliver 121 career coaching, group learning and development, and outplacement services. We devise community forum theatre, corporate drama workshops and role-play scenarios. http://www.evolvingcareersplayers.com  Get in touch to discuss your needs: carmel@evolvingcareersplayers.com