International positive education network – first conference

I attended the Ultimate Wellbeing and Mental Health in Education Conference in London May 5 2017. It was organised by the IPEN network (www.ipen-network.com) and chaired by its’ President, Sir Anthony Seldon. The speaker line up included such luminaries as the founder of Positive Psychology, Dr Martin Seligman, Prof Lord Richard Layard, David Halpern, Chief … Continued

Let’s not pursue happiness at work as the end goal

An article in the Guardian today questions the often monumental efforts modern day businesses put into making their employees happy and that despite this effort work is still the place where we feel most miserable. The only place we feel worse is being sick in bed – and after a weekend holed up on the … Continued

4 ways bad recruitment destroys employer branding

Providing a bad experience to job applicants during the recruitment process can irreparably damage your employer brand. But good practice can be gleaned from these four mistakes typically made by employing organisations:   Mistake Number One: Employers don’t explain the reason for assessment Psychometric tests are increasingly used to sift and select candidates. However, recruiters … Continued

How leaders kill meaning at work

A multiyear research project reported in a book by Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer, The Progress Principle, found that of all the events that can deeply engage people in their jobs, the single most important element is making progress in meaningful work. Even incremental steps forward—small wins—boost what they call “inner work life”: the constant … Continued

Appreciation – because they’re worth it

You would imagine that, with all that has been said and written about appreciation and saying ‘thank you’, there would be an abundance of it around. So are you getting too much appreciation? Do you find that you have to filter out emails with “Thank You” in the title? Are you so fed up of … Continued

Why ‘Why’ is so important

Simon Sinek’s TED talk on How Great Leaders Inspire Action has been viewed over 29,000,000 times at the time of writing this blog. His talk focuses on the importance of asking why a business exists – the meaning and purpose behind the balance sheet – to inspire and motivate employees. At the organisational level, understanding … Continued

Bad news is like bind weed

In most jobs we are required to deliver bad news – whether it be redundancy, a ticking off in performance, or yet another managing expectations discussion around pay and promotion. Sharing bad news is something most of us dread doing and we tend to either do it badly, in a rush or put it off … Continued

How organisations destroy meaning in 7 easy steps

In an earlier blog I quoted an article by Catherine Bailey and Adrian Madden which highlighted the very personalised aspect of meaning and purpose at work. Each individual experienced meaning in a different and often intangible way – what was meaningful for one person was not necessarily so for another. This raises the question as … Continued

What makes your work meaningful?

Workers undertaking meaningful work experience better health, greater levels of job satisfaction and more satisfying relationships with peers compared with those who lack meaning in their lives and work. The chance to undertake meaningful work is therefore something to which we all should aspire and which organisations need to understand.  However, there is very little … Continued

Choosing the meaningful action

Work today is organised upon principles outlined by Adam Smith 150 years ago and that’s not serving us well.   As a reminder, Smith believed that people are inherently lazy and won’t do anything unless motivated or bribed, preferably with a salary. As individuals don’t enjoy working, the best thing we can do for them … Continued