Blake Redding, Associate Director - Mapien 

On 2 June, Mapien hosted a round table with fellow members of Queensland Leaders to explore how the impacts of “current times” are affecting them, their team, and in turn their business. Through exploring a combination of personal experiences, the science behind these experiences, and sharing tactics they are using in their workplaces, the following items were identified to be strengthening the people side of organisations through 2022:

1. Personal training sessions in the park (1-hour)

2. One-on-ones

3. Exploring individual differences and similarities between team members using psychometrics

4. Taking time to check-in with team members and encouraging small but meaningful choices that increase balance between prioritising self and work priorities.

5. Sharing the lead of teams, meetings, and projects rather than feeling like the one leader must always be in control.

6. Share feedback on progress and acknowledging when people are going above and beyond to encourage a shift back to more manageable workloads, rather than encouraging a new norm that too much work is the way it is.

7. Mindful of “non-verbal” cues being sent or received, as sometimes what people don’t say is a trigger to check-in.

8. As leaders, make a note to label their feelings, both helpful and unhelpful, to encourage others to do the same.

9. Schedule lunch-and-learns as a touchpoint in which the importance of social connection is equal to learning.

10. Considering one’s own state of mind and being considerate as to how this may impact the team.

11. Show genuine interest and check-in with all teams, big and small, rather than getting distracted by the biggest teams or loudest voices.

12. Make a mindful effort to “switch on” by having specific rituals in terms of dress, self-talk, and schedule.

13. Seek out coaching with 360-degree survey to get a better read on how one as a leader is impacting others.

14. Seeking and getting feedback from others.

15. Ask team members about their work hours and check each other’s assumptions about what’s realistic and sustainable to help people who are “scared” to switch off when working from home or are getting in the habit of checking things through the night without needing to.

16. Listen to the words you are using and check if the intended message may be coming off confusing or too harsh as there is less face to face contact and overall communication at a one-on-one level to sense check.

17. Reduce procrastination by clearly articulating to self and others when specific tasks will be started, progressed, and concluded, instead of waiting for the “perfect time” to get a task done from start to finish in one sitting.

18. Have an emergency button in meetings, such as a squeaky purple octopus, that is a way for people to circuit break awkward moments or to help people bring up items they may not usually be assertive enough to share.

19. Personally, and as a team, revisit and clarify the organisation’s mission and purpose statement o ensure it is still a strong fit for your team and operating environment.

20. Evolve the meeting structure by asking if people are getting what they need from meetings and experiment with new agendas and ways of chairing.

These 20 actions were identified as steps taken by businesses over the past 6 months to strengthen their people through the unpredictable world we live in. Every organisation, team, and person are different, meaning some ideas and practices will work, or not work, for different people. Of note for all participants was the genuine acknowledgement of value, care and concern for their teams and a desire to find ways to help strengthen their life at work and home.

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