Here are a few great posts that stacked up while I was in Vancouver last week:
Todd, over at A penny For offered a couple good posts:
This one is called 8 Principles for Learning. From an old issue of Fast Company. I like #2:
2. Cracking the whip stifles learning. "If you are a supervisor and you see two people talking in the hallway, don't say, `Get back to work.' Recognize that this interaction creates a community of practice that stimulates learning -- and it may be precisely what they need.
This post is interesting too. 9 Tips for Change Agents (again from an old Fast Company). Here's my favorite:
4. Take senior management along. Turner's own education included benchmarking trips to Saturn, Texas Instruments, Motorola, General Electric, and other companies known for their innovative approaches to learning. "Some of the people in the senior group were very skeptical," Turner says. "It helped to take them on these benchmarking trips to show them other companies that were actually doing some of the same learning practices."
I have had great success getting senior managers enthused about a potential change by immersing them with the experience.
The always smart and entertaining Rosa Say was a guest in the latest installment of the Cranky Middle Manager podcast. Check it out!
Most of you know that I am not a fan of people be reliant on to-do lists. That said, 99% of you use them. Here is a two-part post from 43 Folders about building a smarter to-do list.
In part 1, the author acknowledges that many items on to-do list don't belong. Here's an excerpt:
Anatomy of a To-do
The primary idea of a to-do is that it's a task that can and should be done--a point that might seem obvious until you start uncovering how many of the items on your to-do list may not belong there (or, conversely, how many uncaptured items do). The best and most useful to-dos share common qualities:
• it's a physical action
• it can be accomplished at a sitting
• it supports valuable progress toward a recognized goal
• it's something for which you are the most appropriate person for the job
Glancing at your own to-do list, do you see any potential troublemakers? Notice any items that make you squeamish? Any mystery meat tasks that seem "un-doable" as is? Don't sweat it. We're going to have you shaped up in no time.
And here's a nice snippet from part 2:
Why Am I Doing This Task?
This is important. When compiling a list of all the stuff that's on your mind (and on your plate), it's crucial to unpack how each task you accept or assign to yourself will support your projects, your roles, and the goals you've set for yourself. Before adding a new item, reflect on the value that each chunk of work brings to your world.
• Is this the best use of my time right now?
• Am I the best person to do this task?
• Is this something that must be done now? Why now?
• What happens if I don't do this at all?