How to change your behaviour! 

The ability to change our behaviour is a gift, sometimes however we forget to use it!  It’s easy for every one of us to get very comfortable with a whole range of behaviours that become well worn and frankly predictable.  That’s of course OK when those behaviours bring the best out of me and others, but not nearly as good when they just serve to ‘get me by’ and even make life more difficult for others.  

Changing behaviour is at the heart of good learning, it’s the part that is necessary if we are going to convert academic theories into meaningful application.  As Bill Treasure put it, we can become too comfeartable to change, that’s too comfortable to bother, and too fearful to try.  Comfort and fear are two huge barriers to trying something new, barriers we need to overcome if we are going to set up new (ever improving) behaviours to our portfolio of experience and ability.  

So what does it take to change a behaviour?  I want to propose that there are 4 things you need to consider.  They will all help you address unhelpful behaviours and implement new more exciting ones.  

Let’s take a scenario and run it through my four things…

This may sound daft, but I’m considering changing my very engrained behaviour of devouring relatively large amounts of salted peanuts throughout any given week!  They’re a favourite, I’m diabetic, I struggle with carb heavy snacks and just don’t have a sweet tooth.  In fact I’ve grown to love anything salty!  Things like that salty Lagavulin whisky or salty liquorice are definite treats in my book.  But we all know, too much salt is not a good thing, and I probably have way over may allowance stuffing in those addictive nuts! So how might I go about changing that behaviour?  

I call the model ADAD.  

Awareness

The first element of behavioural change is becoming more aware of the potential change.  We need to be conscious that change is possible.  That often comes from the realisation that the current behaviour is unhelpful or at least not the best in any particular situation.  Awareness can be self discerned, but sometimes it takes someone else to point it out to you.  Where my nuts are concerned, I’ve been cutely aware that my salt fix is probably unhelpful, especially as my beautiful wife often points this out to me 😉

Desire

After awareness comes desire.  It’s as good as impossible to change a behaviour unless you have some desire to do it!  Desire often comes when I understand the benefits of the change…  Why this new behaviour will benefit me or others in some way.  As my youthfulness passes away (understatement) I’ve definitely developed a desire to prolong my overall health as log as possible, so I can tick the box on that one.  Except I do really like snacking on salted nuts, so unfortunately my desire is somewhat countered by other less helpful ones!  Behavioural change tends to come at the point the new desire starts to outweigh the old desires that keep us comfeartable and unwilling to make a difference.  

Ability

The third requirement is to understand how to make the change.  I have to learn and try new things to establish new ability.  Sometimes this will mean removing the option of the old habit to help me practice new ones.  Ability requires positive action towards the new behaviour and movement away from an old engrained way of working.  Inevitably this stage will be frequented with failures as you learn new approaches and fine tune the skill to perfection.  For me this is probably as simple as buying more healthy snacks to replace the salt! 

Duplication

Finally to embed a new behaviour we need to duplicate it.  Do it again and again until it becomes second nature so that I can call upon that behaviour reliably whenever I need it in the future.  Repetition is sticky, so it will help you to build unconscious competence in the new practice.  

So there you have it, four stages you can apply to anything, even eating habits to change your behaviour.  

Have a listen to Squeeze episode 9 if you would like to find out some more about behavioural change. 

Bob Bannister 

Ships Captain

Are remote workers missing out?

In this growing age of the digital nomad, there are many perceived benefits associated with being a remote worker.  Many of these benefits are genuine, tangible things like not having to spend two or more hours of the day commuting too and from work.  However, managers will be well served by understanding some of the main pitfalls that are becoming clear now that we have some (all be it short) history to learn from.  I’ve touched on some of these topics in previous blogs.  

(See: How intimate are you when managing your remote team?  How do you keep a sense of team when everyone is geographically dispersed?  Leading remote workers in the digital era) 

This time I want to raise the question as to whether remote workers are missing out on career opportunities? 

It’s an interesting issue that seems to be increasingly evident.  People who remote work can be missing out on promotions and other opportunities, simply because ‘out of sight’ is often ‘out of mind’.  This phenomenon is also contributing to the willingness of career hungry remote workers to work ever extending hours, to ensure they have impact whilst not physically present.  The danger is simple, the further you are from the main hub, the more unlikely you are to be selected.  

Good managers need to buck this apparent trend and think more widely when project or career opportunities are on the table.  It’s very easy to be inclusive once we are aware of the danger of what I’m calling ‘proximity bias’.  The issue is exaggerated because remote workers often are not so well known to managers in the rest of the business.  It’s not that you, their manager, forgets them, it’s that other managers don’t see them at work, so they don’t naturally come up in the minds of other managers as potential candidates.  

As their direct line manager we have to fill that void for them.  In a way we have to become ambassadors for our team members, making the connections that might ordinarily have occurred within the co located environment.  We have to look out for them and promote their potential when needed.  

If you are interested in hearing more on the topic of managing remote workers, tune into episode 8 of Squeeze our behavioural podcast.  

Bob Bannister 

Ships Captain.  

If there was just one thing that would make you highly effective, what would it be?

With a blog title like ‘If there was just one thing that would make you highly effective, what would it be?’ I should probably start by defining what it is to be highly effective!  Truth is, the answer to that question alone could be longer than the blog itself.  So what I want to suggest is this; highly effective people are those that make every interaction with others an easier thing.  People who make theirs and others lives easier will have amazing impact in their lives, even if they don’t end up being the next investor on Dragons Den.  Every organisation is in desperate need of this sort of people, and every manager should in my opinion aspire to make the lives of their team and others around them more simple, less complex, more easily understood, less ambiguous, more pleasant and less painful.  

So if there was just one thing that would make you highly effective, I’m proposing it’s this, the ability to be ‘frictionless’.  

Defaulting to my roots and using engineering metaphors, highly effective people are truly like the oil that lubricates the moving parts of an engine.  They are somehow able to make things work better, smoother, they in effect reduce the friction that can be found in every situation and interaction.  

What does that mean in real day to day terms? How can we break this down into something repeatable and practical that we can implement?  Actually it’s not that hard, here are two ways you can increase your frictionlessness (think i may have invented that word 🙂 )

1. Just be nice to people!  

Not many people make the decision to be nasty in life, a few possibly do, but most don’t.  It’s more that the business of life adds pressures and stressors which result in us forgetting to be nice on occasions.  I’m writing this on a BA flight having just navigated the zoo that is LHR Terminal 5 on a busy afternoon.  During this process I had the need to interface with a clearly pressured member of staff.  She was being pulled from pillar to post by many different questions (coming from lots of different people), whilst at the same time deal with a growing line of people waiting to check bags in.  I felt for her as she worked hard at being polite and helpful when massively outnumbered by the clients she was trying to serve.  Then it seemed, a supervisor walked over to her, immediately she dropped her defences launching into a torrent of troubles that ended with the phrase “and I’ve only got one pair of hands”.  Life does this to us, we’ve all been there.  As the supervisor, how good would it have been if he had helped her, released her burden in some way.  Sadly he just added to her workload, turned and walked away to stand idle 20 feet away.  

How about this, instead of being a drain on our people, why don’t we as managers try to be a support?   Really, I mean make every transaction one that tops the other up, rather than one which drains them dry.  

2.  Diagnose before you prescribe.  

No one would value the doctor who hands out a prescription to us without having asked us a single question about what’s wrong.  People first need to be diagnosed, they want us to listen to them, hear them, seek to understand them, way before we start to prescribe what’s next.  

If you want to be frictionless, listen to people before you start telling what you think.  This simple change will give you so much better insight and allow you to prescribe the correct medicine, rather than the medicine you always prefer or default too.  

No doubt I could write more on this topic (and maybe I will at some future point), but I promise if you actively implement these two ideas you will start to make interactions smoother, simpler and more appropriate for your team members.  

Being effective is a life long endeavour we should never give up on.  This week’s Squeeze podcast picks up more of these themes, so follow this link, have a listen to other ideas that accompany what I’ve written above.  

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

The most important management role; building competence through coaching

One of our 4 C’s of being a high functioning team is ‘Competence’.  It’s the domain expertise, skill element of the team.  It’s something we all need, the manager, but also every single member of the team.  However for the manager there is something really important to understand; no matter how brilliant you are, how great your competence, if your team isn’t up to the required competence then two things become very evident:  

  1. You can’t go and have lunch because your people will be addicted to you, and 
  2. you will never be able to empower your people with confidence.  

Both those things add up to never being a high functioning team, and if you are by chance high performing, then it will likely be pretty stressful and hard work.  

I don’t know that I was ever told this back in the day (when I managed teams throughout my manufacturing career), but I now believe the single most important role you have, is to develop the competence of your people.  It’s primary, if you don’t facilitate their development, then it will take them years if they ever make it at all.  I’ve become totally convinced that great managers spend most of their time creating opportunities for their people to grow their domain skill and fine tune their ways of working.  

Competence is the heartland of being able to empower your staff to get on with the task in hand.  So what should you do about it if managing a team?  Here are two simple things that will accelerate you in making a difference:

Constantly work at creating learning experiences for you people.  

To help you create learning experiences, you probably need to stop seeing delegation as a way of getting your work done, and instead believe your people will never develop their competence unless you delegate new experiences to them.  Delegation is a developmental tool and should be viewed as nothing else.  Everyday, ask yourself, what could I delegate to whom in order to develop their competence.  Along with this recognise they are not telepathic!  You will have to cover off method, the sequence of events to complete the delegated task, and you will do well to check in with them to support and guide them in those early steps.  

The second thing you need to do is increase your coaching style as a manager.  

It seems to me that there is a huge misunderstanding amongst many managers about what that means.  Lots of managers we work with confuse ‘telling’ or ‘directing’ their staff as coaching.  In very simple terms that’s mentoring, coaching is the complete opposite.  It’s using questions to draw out understanding, it’s getting out of the way of the solution and being non directive.  A basic difference would be this.  You notice someone has the wrong answer, so you step in and say something like “I think you’ll find the answer is eight”.  That’s not coaching, nor is anything that borders on giving your staff instructions, process, guidance, or even sharing your experience.  Coaching would sound more like this “How did you get the answer seven?”  The difference between the two is simple yet profound.  So long as you keep giving the answer, you will create management junkies, utterly addicted to you and your over controlling ways.  The moment you switch to the question, you will begin to help your team work things out themselves, enabling them to develop their own competence.  

Just these two things alone; creating learning experiences, and using coaching questions will start to accelerate your team members competence.  Implement them and they will be an absolute pillar that allows you to empower your staff and function together in a significantly more effective way.  

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

We are exploring this topic more deeply in Squeeze episode 6, so please do have a listen.

Why developing competence is the managers responsibility  

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the advent of self directed learning – in other words creating the environment where staff take control of their own learning, often supported by the organisation.  I’ve nothing against this approach, it’s great if people take charge of their own development, however my word of caution is concerned with this becoming the only approach.  

What if I need my team members to be able to complete some specific thing more competently and instead they choose to learn French?  What if they even decide they don’t need any learning, after all it gets in the way of productivity doesn’t it?  

Having competent staff is at the very heart of high performing and high functioning teams.  It’s the pillar of empowerment, it’s the bedrock of delegation.  So I’m convinced that owning the development of your people is one of the absolute imperatives of the management role.  I certainly wouldn’t want to leave it all to their discretion and freewill.  It’s too important for that.  

Great managers are those that care deeply about developing their people.  They look for opportunities to help them learn.  They create environments that bring new experiences and opportunities for their team members.  They match delegation of tasks with specific individuals to introduce new skills and behaviours.  They see staff development as the foundation stone on which the performance of the whole group will flourish.  

We should work very hard to create environments that prosper experimentation and minimise judgement.  This is what kids do fantastically.  They lack the fear of judgement (at least in those early years) and will just ‘have a go’ unconcerned about the worlds view of them.  Sadly all too quickly that inquisitive question ‘why?’ becomes loaded, when others start to ask things like “why did you wear that?”  As managers we need to work so hard at allowing that experimentation without judgement so that people will ‘have a go’ once again.  

In very simple terms, switch out the ‘why’ question in favour of ‘what’ and ‘how’.  Help your team members understand things rather than feel they are being critiqued or judged.  Think seriously about the skills and behaviours needed to make your team function and perform, and guide your people into those specific experiments.  

Working for a manager who actively nurtures your development is an incredibly enjoyable and rewarding experience, so become that manager for your team.  Don’t leave this vital role to chance, instead make it your priority to focus on the competence growth of your people. 

Bob Bannister

Ships Captian 

We are exploring this topic more deeply in Squeeze episode 5 – How we learn; have a listen.

Managers, stop trying to motivate your staff!

For much of my management career I was under the impression that one of the requirements of a good manager was to motivate their team members.  In recent years I’ve begun to wonder if that’s altogether the wrong thing!  My doubt first manifested itself when reading Prof Steve Peters suggesting that motivation was worthless – WORTHLESS!  Yes, really, the British olympic cycling teams psychologist tells his athletes to forget it, it’s a waste of time.  I liked his logic a lot.  He suggests motivation is worthless simply because some days you’re motivated and others you’re not.  What matters more he suggests is commitment.  Commitment gets you up and training, he points out, when your motivation has dropped of a cliff.  

This made me reflect on just how internal our motivation seems to be.  Some days I get loads done, others I don’t, no one has particularly influenced that, it’s just how I’m feeling.  Which if true (at least in part) it makes managing someone else’s motivation pretty tricky!  It’s a constant moving feast, and so as your manager, I have no idea what I am dealing with from day to day.  So is it in fact unhelpful to think motivating our staff is the managers role?  

My thinking isn’t fully matured on this, as it does seem evident that as a manager I am able to do things that can demotivate my team.  So it therefore stands to reason I could do other things that help to increase or perhaps maintain someones motivation.  I just wonder if thinking ‘I must motivate my team’ is the wrong thing.  In the place of this, would I be better to work on how I might ‘inspire’ my team so that they could find their own motivation?  

The logic goes like this; motivation is an internal thing going up and down on it’s own accord, so as the manager I would be better to focus on the external thing.  That is creating an environment where my people can find their own motivation.  When my motivation is low, I can find inspiration in those things others are saying or doing.  

If we stop thinking ‘motivate’ and replace it with ‘inspire’ how would our behaviours change?  Fundamentally it makes a switch from push to pull.  Rather than pushing at motivation levels, I lead and create the vacuum which can pull others into a more motivated place.   In other words I go before, leading the way, breaking new ground, going the extra mile, showing clarity and focus etc etc.  I set the environment within which others find the inspiration for their own motivation.  

I know that motivation theories abound.  Just go ahead and type those two words into google, you’ll be overwhelmed by lists of different theories.  It’s a complicated topic, but in my simple experience, I’ve been motivated most when those around me have gone out of their way to support, involve and empower me to act.  I’ve been least motivated when they have been controlling, interfering and untrusting toward me.  

Work out those things that have inspired you.  Be analytical about it, try to figure out what you could do that would set a great environment in which your team members can thrive and find their own motivation day after day.  

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

Will Karlsen and I explore this topic in more detail in Squeeze episode 4 have a listen.

Am I making myself clear? The difference between intent and perception.

We have given the most incredible gift of communication.  Our ability to interact orally is utterly unique compared to any other creature on the planet.  We are good at it too.  We read subtle nuance, micro gestures across the lyric, song and dance of our discussions.  Yet even given all this, we still on occasions get it wrong, we fall down in between the cracks of understanding, miss reading something that someone has said, and so introduce unhelpful stress into our relationships, both working and personal. 

Often we will start to notice that the conversation is beginning to progress in an unhelpful way, perhaps emotion is swelling a little and the dialogue not unfolding in a helpful way.  It’s in these moments we need to become a little analytical and work out how we can restore equilibrium, ‘understanding’ back into the dialogue.  

A simple tool that can help us do this is found in recognising the appearance of the ‘arc of distortion’.  Diagrammatically it looks something like this:  

In those trigger moments, when we notice that the dialogue is not progressing well, we need to reposition and seek to narrow the gap between intent and perception.  

The two questions I need to use for this diagnosis couldn’t be simpler:

  1. What is my intent in this conversation?
  2. What is the likely perception of the other party?

We will always have intent by the way.  So if that’s the case, better understanding my intent will enable me to better position my communication to limit the potential for distortion.  Catch the distortion early in the flow and that’s often all I will need to do.  Quickly ask myself that one question, and fine tune my next response in the light of it.  

If that’s still not taking the conversation in a more helpful direction then question 2 comes into play.  How is the other party perceiving what I am saying?  This is more tricky as I’m likely making some assumptions about how they are reading me.  However, this question refines our first diagnosis and may enable us to bring about a more significant change in the delivery of our dialogue.  At this point change is what’s required.  If I continue unaltered in my approach, I will inevitably continue to enlarge the distortion.  It’s definitely worth interjecting a significant alteration at this point, to really switch the perception.  That could be as simple as altering my posture significantly.  For example, my colleague is seated at their desk, I’m rushing around packing a bag of training materials and thinking about heading out to the car for a longish journey.  I notice that the conversation is not progressing well, so I stop my lack of attention, sit down next to the colleague, pause and say “sorry, say that again, you’ve now got my undivided attention”.  In a moment I have demonstrated an increase in both my attention, interest and care towards the other person.  The likely response will be too narrow the distortion and increase the alignment of both my intent and their perception.  

Don’t ever be afraid to surface your intention, sometimes it can be really helpful to put it right out there… “my intention in this is…”  Make it easy and accessible more of the time, and you will find that you have less distortion to deal with on a daily basis.  

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

We are exploring this topic more deeply in Squeeze episode 3, so please do have a listen.  Squeeze is also available on all the usual podcast apps.

Building a high functioning team

There is a clear difference between high performing teams and high functioning teams.

Put simply, many high performing teams are not necessarily high functioning. They achieve what they achieve through effort, blood, sweat and frequently tears. Performance in these organisations is exhausting, often stressful, there is fall out and discontent. They are battle zones. In truth, these are not pleasant environments in which to work, but so often we put up with it because when we jump we find exactly the same issues emerging in the fire as well as the frying pan.

In contrast high functioning teams are positively slick, they are pleasant supportive places to exist. They operate in such a different zone that performance becomes the by-product. So nearly all high functioning teams are also high performing, but without the angst found in high performing teams that are not high functioning.

It’s this inability to function highly that we have witnessed time and time again. Almost everywhere you will find people working hard, everyone is busy, at least by the norms of their incumbent culture. Performance is striven for on all almost every front, but it’s like giving a diabetic with a headache some paracetamol when the reality is their blood sugar is too high. Working harder and faster, becoming increasingly busy is not the answer, improving the way we function is.

Will Karlsen and I have been working for the past decade (or even longer) trying to understand this and after much consideration, research and head scratching, we’ve defined it!  What it takes to be a truly high functioning team.  You will no doubt be pleased to hear that there is a model, plus what we are calling ‘my high functioning team footprint’.  

Here’s the model for you to ponder…

 

There is a fair bit of explanation behind each idea within the model, but for the purposes of this blog I’m going to cut to the quick and take you straight to the 4 elements of our footprint (the steps required to engender high functioning) which can be traced within the following sentence:

Two or more people, working together within a prosperous environment, towards a shared purpose.

We’ve summarised the footprint using 4 C’s that sub divide this sentence:

Two or more people (Collaboration),

working together (Competence),

in a prosperous environment (Community),

towards a shared purpose (Clarity).

Operationally it looks like this:

 

Clarity, competence and collaboration interlinked within a safe environment of a comfortable community.  We have found that all of these steps have significance and application within high functioning teams.  

Community

I’ve recently written on the topic of ‘Building Comfortable Communities’ so have a read.  It is the community that surrounds the three other operational areas beginning with ultra high ‘clarity’ of purpose.  

Clarity

Linking a strong organisational or functional purpose with day to day activity is always evident in high functioning teams.  It’s the thing that gives them common purpose and ultimately ensures that all parts are contributing meaningfully to the collective desired outcome.  Clarity of what we call ‘the golden thread’ between strategy and operations provides the barometer against which managers and team members are able to test their actions.  In high performing teams it’s often all about action, heads are down and everyone is busy.  By comparison, the high functioning team is more able to quickly ascertain which actions to focus on, and perhaps more importantly, which are wasteful.  

Competence

You are staring risk or even failure in the face if you empower someone who is not competent to complete an activity.  High functioning teams are always made up of highly competent people.  That’s not to say that they have stopped learning, or are competent in ‘all’ situations – the reverse is more true.  It’s that the managers and teams place a high value on domain expertise.  They support development, they enable experimentation they give space for mistakes to occur safely – all in the name of building high competence across the community.  They are often able to flex roles, support other areas that are under pressure, make insightful decisions and self manage the task load (Will gives a great example of this in this episode of Squeeze the podcast). 

Collaboration

It’s incredible to observe, but robust research (such as that carried out by Gillian Tett) is suggesting the advent of more and more powerful technology has not served to improve our collaboration.  In fact it has forced ever increased fragmentation between different functions and divisions of many organisations.  Gillian writes of organisations that have great brands, all the right skills, in fact everything they need to command a new emerging market, yet they fail at the first collaboration post.  They are just too fragmented to capitalise on the sum of the parts. 

Building a high functioning team is not easy, but it is attainable and will (time and again) trump those teams that focus solely on performance.  Implementing initiatives that contribute to each of the 4 C’s can indeed boost your performance, but it will be through much greater interdependence not independence.  

To listen to Will and I explore this further, tune into ‘Squeeze’ the podcast episode 2 on all podcast platforms.  

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

How close should managers get to their team members?

How important is the relationship I have with my team?  Pretty vital I’d say!  But what does that really mean?  How well does my team need to know me? What’s that balance between being familiar, one of the team and being professional, being their boss?  

These are valuable questions to ponder.  For what it’s worth, I think the tendency has been to air too much on the side of “I’m their boss” and therefore the need to keep a level of distance between me and them.  It’s become a mantra that echoes the corridors of our organisations “you must be professional’ nothing else is acceptable.  What does that really mean?  Often I think it’s interpreted as; I have to be stuffy, starchy, serious, aloof, superior, mysterious, separate, detached, chilly, even unsociable!   Well, excuse my language, but what a load of codswallop!  

OK, I bet most of you are thinking, I’m not any of those things, but look again.  How much are you working at ‘being the boss’, over ‘being the team’?  I would suggest its likely there are many little things on a daily basis that indicate you are the boss, compared to relatively few things that indicate you are part of the team.  Don’t hear me wrong – I’m not saying we should be unprofessional (whatever that is), I’m just highlighting the danger of limiting true relationship with my followers.  

I bet we would all agree with the concept of situational leadership, the need to lead in an appropriate way for a situation rather than have one style alone.  So why then, when it comes to relationship should I think one approach is going to be the best?  And what’s more that one approach has to have some element of ‘distancing myself’ from my team attached to it.  So here it is guys, you heard it first here, note it down and give me the credit for it whenever it surfaces.  What we need is…

‘Situational Intimacy’

© Bannister 2019 😉

Yep, simple yet profound hey! The level of intimacy we show needs to be appropriate for the situation!  I know the word ‘intimacy’ is not a very business word, but I’m convinced it’s a helpful one.  What is intimacy?  It’s the level of closeness we have with another person.  It provides a huge scale for us to consider from totally connected, open, laid bare, through to distant, unknown, cloaked.  It stands to reason there are times when I have to stand apart, but if that is at the expense of those occasions I am close and known, then it cannot be a good thing.  

As I suggested at the top of this blog, I think we’ve overdone the need to stand apart as managers.  

Who helps you when the chips are down?  Who trusts you the most? Who supports you best when you’re struggling?  Who is keen to follow your lead?  It’s those people who have the highest levels of intimacy with you.  If I am only distancing myself with my team, how can I expect them to want to follow me?  Having ‘professional intimacy’ with my team way outstrips the value of distancing myself.  I’m sure this is like the carrot and stick thing.  All the research tells us that the stick works, it is in fact better than ignoring my people.  The tough, hard, critical approach does bring results.  But those results are always shadowed by the performance achieved via a carrot approach.  It’s been well researched, for example, have a read of ‘How full is your bucket’ by Tom Rath.  Praising people can virtually double performance when compared to constant criticism.  Cutting a longer story short, Rath ultimately concludes that there is a perfect carrot stick ratio, that gets the kick up of performance even from the correction if done (he proposes) in a ratio of five praises to one criticism.  I haven’t done the research but I would stake my pension on the prospect that ‘situational intimacy’ would be similar.  We probably need five times as much ‘closeness’ compared to ‘distancing’ with our people.  If that’s the case, we can surmise that the current cultural narrative of “we must be professional” could result in an over cold level of intimacy with my people.  Anecdotally the best bosses I have experienced tend to be the ones that are able to be both intimate and professional.  It’s that salami sausage thing, they know when to give a piece of themselves that is open, honest and revealing, yet they also know when they need to give another slice which is establishing a boundary and some element of separation.  It’s all the same salami, all genuinely them, but it’s intelligent in the relationship.  Recognising that all shades of professional intimacy have legitimacy, if placed in the context of being the most helpful approach in the moment.  

Getting to know your team is so very very important, but maybe letting them get to know you is even more critical.  It’s something that creates bonds, builds safety, engenders the knowledge of when or when not to offer support.  It is at the heart of being a high functioning team, collaborating not just transacting, disclosing not just enquiring.  

Well, having said all that, perhaps you would like to get to know me a little more?  I would certainly welcome that and therefore encourage you to tune into ‘Squeeze’ the podcast.  It’s a brand new management and leadership development podcast from my colleague Will Karlsen and I.  You can catch us for 30 minutes every Monday on whatever platform you prefer to consume your podcasts.  Episode one has been posted and is available, starting with some personal introductions and an opportunity to find out more about us.  Just podcast search the word ‘squeeze’ and we seem to pop up.  Come along and increase your intimacy with us, because we’d love to get closer to you.  

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

Squeeze!

We’ve got some exciting news to tell you.  Next week at World of Learning, we are launching a brand new shiny podcast called Squeeze.  Here’s what the blurb says about it.  

Squeeze is a management training podcast designed to help squeeze the best out of you.  Each Monday our experts in behavioural training, Bob Bannister and Will Karlsen, sit down to discuss personal effectiveness, helping you to fine tune your management and leadership skills.  

In the first episode of Squeeze, you’ll get to know us, who we are and what made us think we were interesting enough or insightful enough to make a podcast!  We’ll also give you a bit of a roadmap for the future episodes of Squeeze.  

You will be able to consume Squeeze on whatever platform you normally choose to listen to your podcasts, fresh every Monday.  

Have a listen, let us know what you think, ask us a question, suggest a topic.  We look forward to giving you a Squeeze very soon. 

Bob Bannister

Ships Captain

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