Be bold; Be brave; Be daring and courageous enough to…

Be Bold
Be Brave
Be Daring
and Be Courageous Enough to:

  • be unbelievable
  • believe in yourself and others
  • show you care
  • say no when it matters that you say no
  • take an unpopular stand and take a risk for the sake of the possible outcome
  • ask for help when you need it
  • openly empathise
  • openly celebrate
  • forgive (and forget)
  • remain on course, to remain focussed
  • trust your judgement and instincts
  • recognise and overcome obstacles
  • earn respect and permission to lead
  • say sorry
  • be happy for others in their success
  • be kind to yourself (and others)

HOW?

Take a moment and think of a time when all you could see was that the odds were against you.

It all seemed impossible. People around you that you loved and had always trusted were also confirming to you that your perception of the odds being against you was correct.

Only you knew that regardless, you had to do something!

And here you are, as you read this you know you did something, or a few things and you came through it!

No-one can predict the future. However, there are ways of reflecting on and analysing past experiences and outcomes so that you can take an educated and informed guess about the outcome of doing nothing – or actually doing something.

As you also know, it isn’t until you have been daring and courageous enough to do something, that you will realise that you can actually achieve more than you ever thought you could – even in this moment!

Check out Mary Jackson believing that anything is possible by clicking here.

British Marine Expo 2019 – Workshops

GL connects are delighted to be delivering two workshops at the British Marine Expo 2019 on 26th March 2019 at St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton. Join us (it’s free) and learn how to attract and retain quality customers and team members!

Workshop 1: It doesn’t have to always be this way!

Why?
Gain insights and understanding into what motivates team members to join and remain with their employers and be the best they can be.

What?
The world of work is changing! What is the third and possibly fourth place of work? For success in the world of business, we need to:

  • Attract and retain the best people
  • Provide an environment where team members can do their best work
  • Make it easy for team members to be the best they can be – consistently

Who?
Employers, leaders, managers and You! All will benefit from attending.

How?
We will provide 50 minutes of highly interactive learning with leisure marine, culture, change and space management experts, Gita and Geoff Langston of GL connects. You will walk away with ideas to implement!

Where?
St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton

When?
Tuesday 26th March 2019 – 09.00 hrs

Workshop 2: #YouDontGetThisOnLine

Why?
Gain insights into what it means to be brave, adventurous and engaging; giving your customers a consistently highly personalised and experience-based interaction resulting in both retaining existing and attracting new customers.

What?
With the recent high profile retail chain closures, we might be persuaded to believe that traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ retail outlets are doomed to failure!
Did you know that despite all that online traders want you to believe, only 18% of retail sales are done on-line (ONS 15th November 2018)?

This means that there continues to be a special place for physical ‘bricks and mortar’ retailers.

To survive and flourish, retailers will need to be brave and adventurous – building on ways of retailing from the past, and exploring new ways of engaging with and retaining customers and attracting new ones. Retailers of the future will also need to provide a highly personalised and experientially-based offer.

Who?
All retailers who either operate a physical outlet or have tenants that operate physical outlets will benefit from attending this session.

How?
We will provide 50 minutes of highly interactive learning with leisure marine, sales, and retail experts Gita and Geoff Langston of GL connects. You will walk away with ideas to boost your retail sales immediately!

Where?
St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton

When?
Tuesday 26th March 2019 – 14.00 hrs

Join us and see your business from a different angle! Get a flavour of what is possible.

Is it holiday time? How to REALLY chill out!

Wow! What an amazing summer we have had so far, haven’t we?

It is typically the time of year when many people will be taking a well earned break to relax and recharge body and mind to get ready for the rest of the year . . . what about you?

Many people find it really difficult to slow down and leave work behind even though research shows:

‘A holiday does seem to have the desired effect, as 66% of people said that they felt more productive following a holiday, with 67% reporting a higher level of job satisfaction as a result of returning from a holiday.’Croner House.

There are also an increasing number of self-employed people who feel an ongoing personal responsibility to make sure that their source of income continues, despite attempting to take some personal time out typically with no holiday pay.

Does this sound familiar?

Well, life tends to be a series of balancing acts. So, how do we get the balance right between business and home, particularly when we are supposed to be ‘on holiday’?

For us (Gita and Geoff), the starting point is that in order to look after others at work or at home, WE personally and individually need to be fit and healthy in body and mind. So, not only is your holiday a ‘well earned break’, it is an essential part of being successful as a business owner, colleague, parent, partner, son, daughter etc.

W would like to share a few ideas for you to practice during your holiday; whether it is for a few hours, a whole day, an entire week, or to create a brand new habit:

  • Do a phone (and laptop) fast – leave your phone behind if possible and check your messages only twice a day. If you are using your phone as your camera, leave it in Airplane mode.
  • Check your social media (if you feel it is essential to do so), just once in the morning and once in the evening. Even if social media is important to your business, remember this is `your time to refresh!
  • Learn to laugh stuff off! So, if you get lost, miss a meal or get mixed up when having a go with a foreign language, just laugh it off.
  • Read paper books. Preferably fun books that will give you a different perspective on how you can live your life both during your break and when you get home.
  • Take up some fun or new regular exercise such as swimming, walking, water sports, cycling, tennis, Tai Chi or something local that you come across.
  • Give yourself and your family guilt-free time to do what you want – and most importantly enjoy it!
  • Make time to talk, listen, share and interact on a human level.
  • Get plenty of sleep. Research consistently shows that eight hours of sleep at night pays dividends in terms of energy and health.
  • Immerse yourself in some trivia such as brain games, adult colouring books, puzzles, gardening, board games, I Spy . . .

What else can YOU add to this list?

Please share your ideas with us so we can share them with others.

To motivate you in ‘getting stuck in’ to finding out how to balance your life better, have a look at this video. An interesting perspective on the important things in life, illustrated in a fun way:

https://glconnects.com/videos/the-important-things-in-life/

Circles of Influence – Coaching Yourself to Action

The circle of concern has everything you care about in it.

Just because you care about something and you are passionate about it, does that always mean you can do something about it? I expect your answer will be the same as mine, it’s a No!

SO when I am faced with a problem, I get a bit of paper and I draw four concentric circles like those to the side, and then use this image as a guide and a way to focus my limited resource – Me and my time.

To help explain the process, I will use the example of selling and buying a house. Remember this is an example that you can use to understand the concept of circles of influence, and then apply the approach to something you care about.

  • First step: I write my problem in the outer most circle Number 1 : I want to move!
  • My next step is to think through all the possible solutions and l write them down on a separate piece of paper.
  • I then number each solution as per each circle above, and then to help me focus, actually write them onto the circles on my first bit of paper.

So:

  • Everything outside my control and outside my influence would be numbered 2.
  • Everything I can influence would be numbered 3.
  • Everything I can control would be numbered 4.

Here are some examples of statements with the number of the circle in which they sit:

  • Choose an estate agent to sell my house – No. 4
  • Choose the area I want to live in – No. 4
  • Hope the interest rates stay low – No. 2
  • Get the mortgage agreement with a bank – No. 3
  • Make my house welcoming and in good repair to sell – No. 4
  • The local search comes back without issues – No. 2
  • Wonder if the state of the housing market is good for sellers – No. 2
  • What if I sell before I find somewhere to buy? – No. 3
  • Timings of viewings – No. 3
  • Price for selling – No. 2
  • How to afford what I want to buy – No. 2
  • Where the house is marketed – No. 3

I can now see more clearly where I can be pro-active and that is with everything in circle No. 4. I can also begin to work on things in circle No. 3 and consequently some of these will then move into circle No. 4. The bigger circle No. 4 is (i.e. the more statements there are in it), the more energy and time I have for things in circle No. 3 and I begin to see evidence that I am making a difference.

Remember, it may feel relatively easy to spend time and focus on issues in circle No. 2 however, it means that you will not be taking responsibility for your actions and outcomes and your energy will decrease and your impact on what matters to you will be minimal at best.

Prior to using this method of problem solving, I use to find myself being reactive, sometimes blaming others, feeling powerless and demotivated. Consequently, I would have little energy left to even think about, never mind do something about the problem or issue.

So what’s on your mind?

Take the following steps and you will notice how it makes you pro-active in your problem solving to both business and personal concerns:

a. Draw your circles and number them 1,2,3,4
b. Write the solutions, think as wide and as deep as you want
c. Number the statements based on the circle within which they sit
d. Write them into the relevant circle to help focus you
e. Get on and TAKE ACTION starting with all the statements in circle No. 4

Start your journey of coaching yourself and we would love to hear from you about how you got on.

Now, have a look at this festive video which shows how one organisation made circles No. 3 and No. 4 bigger and delighted a whole host of people.

Be careful what you notice…

As humans, we are prone to selective attention where we look for patterns to reinforce what we see by giving excessive importance to unremarkable events that seem like they follow a sequence. What we tend to not notice are the hundreds and thousands of bits of information that are not repeated because they do not create an interesting pattern.

Together with selective attention, we also demonstrate confirmation bias where we give even further importance to each bit of information proving that there is something extraordinary about what we have decided to notice.

So what does all this mean in everyday life for you, me, everyone?

Your brain is great at pattern recognition, it helps you learn. This means you will be looking for patterns to reinforce what you want to notice and so give it importance.

There is so much information being pushed at you all the time via advertising, news feeds, social media posts, radio, magazines to name just a few. Often these bits of information are biased to encourage you to notice patterns that those pushing the information want you to notice, and  selected to make you feel either fearful or inadequate unless you do something different or buy something.

The under-used benefit of selective attention and confirmation bias is that you can choose what you look for so:

  • Take a moment to notice what you have to be grateful for, such as friends, life, health, being literate (reading and understanding this article for instance). Unless you look for these, you may stay unaware.
  • Notice the colours, the smiles, the flowers, the birdsong, it’s around us all and you still fail to notice it – unless you choose to.
  • In your business world, you can choose to notice the challenges and the day-to-day difficulties. Or you can choose to notice what is going well and do more of that, and notice the opportunities and actually take advantage of these.

Remember, all your friends, family and customers also notice things, so how will you help them think carefully about what they notice or, as you are more aware now, can choose to notice?

Have a look at this video and see what you notice!

Please share some of your stories with us at . . .

What are you waiting for?

“You must have a room, or a certain hour or so a day, where you don’t know what was in the newspapers that morning, you don’t know who your friends are, you don’t know what you owe anybody, you don’t know what anybody owes to you. This is a place where you can simply experience and bring forth what you are and what you might be.”
Joseph Campbell.

In times of uncertainty, there is room for possibilities; when things are not certain, anything is possible.

Yet according to Dante’s Inferno, ‘limbo is the first circle of hell’, and that’s because ambiguity and change are not easy things to deal with in life.

When things are uncertain, we as humans are hard wired to react with fear in order to survive. We become irrational in our thoughts and our actions follow these thoughts. Fear based thoughts inhibit good decision making, so the chances are that our actions will not lead to the best outcomes.

So, the first step is to ‘reframe’ uncertainty. When things are not certain, it means that there are more possibilities, this is reforming the reality of uncertainty into something more positive and something that you can actually work with. It takes you away from irrational reactions to actions that are more considered and will lead you to more desirable outcomes.

So what does all of this mean on a practical level?

  1. Stay positive, think of something in the day that has been positive (however small) and think about it to quieten your mind.
  2. Keep expectations to a minimum, otherwise you will be setting yourself up for disappointment if your expectations aren’t met.
  3. Consider the different potential outcomes and start to plan for them.
  4. Your emotions will be guided by what you focus on, so focus on what is within your control to work on.
  5. Be aware and manage yourself so that you are not overly influenced by another person’s assumption, emotions or opinion.
  6. Things could go a number of different ways so don’t try to consider and ponder on limitless ‘what if’ scenarios.
  7. Give your intuition some space, you can’t force gut instincts. When faced with a tough situation, take the pressure off to get to a solution by doing something different like going for a walk or something you enjoy.
  8. Be prepared to be wrong, that’s okay!
  9. And finally, BREATHE! This will help you stay in the moment, stay calm and make more rational decisions. This may sound easy, take it from me, it takes practise and it will help you when you feel overwhelmed.

So in summary, take yourself out of the unhelpful circle that uncertainty can tempt you into, plan and most importantly, remember to breathe!

As we move into the summer and we enjoy some warmer weather, have a look at this video and listen carefully to the words – do it now! Well, what are you waiting for?

Think About Things Differently

This month, we considered not writing a newsletter and then that took us to ‘Why do we ever bother anyway?’

Well the first thought I had in response was that it’s like a habit, and we have regular reminders in the diary to ensure we keep to our habit.

Then I thought, actually it’s so that we can share ideas, tips, stories and inspirations with our friends and colleagues.

As I further reflected on the initial question, I remembered all the lovely emails and conversations we have had from readers of our newsletters to date. So that’s when it dawned on me – we are building and growing relationships through our newsletters and getting to know people and, they are getting to know us!

So if we didn’t send out a newsletter, you wouldn’t be reading this now and remembering who We are, or reflecting on what’s important to You.

As mentioned above, here are the ideas, tips, stories and inspiration tthis newsletter:

Idea: Think about something you are doing regularly just because you have always done it. Now, what would happen if you didn’t do it? How would that impact you and others that are important to you? By consdiering these questions, now make sure it meets the mark and your intention.

Tip: Do it differently! Experiment with your approach by noticing how people respond and ask questions to better understand them and remember to really listen to what they say!

Story: We have shared our story about writing this newsletter, (incidentally, stories don’t have to be long); now what’s your story? Please share one with us, – a story about something you did differently would be very welcome and we would love to read it!

Inspiration: Here are some tried and tested things practical suggestions that work:

  • Try something you’ve always assumed you can’t do yet secretly wanted to have a go at.
  • Teach someone else to do something and tap into your potential as a leader and coach.
  • Immerse yourself in learning something new and allow yourself to forget about the limitations of time, allowing you to experience mindfulness and to be in the moment.
  • Think about the challenges you face and identify possibly solutions to overcome them and think differently as you do this.
  • Attend an event to connect with like-minded people.
  • Attend an event to connect with people that think differently to you and be open to their thoughts.
  • Well, having thought differently about this newsletter and sharing a brief story with you, we hope you have enjoyed reading it.

Now it’s over to you, share a story with us about you and especially a new experience you have had.

Click here to get your creative juices flowing and be inspired by this video about Thinking Differently!

Little things make a big difference

If you thought that little things don’t make a BIG difference, try sleeping with a mosquito!

Very often we feel that we need to take massive action in order to achieve something significant in a short time.

The results can be highly visible and provide high impact, – very often for only a short time.

What is likely to make a sustainable difference to you and your business is to make small changes over a period of time which are embedded in yours and your business’s DNA.

There are numerous examples of how small changes make a massive, long term difference across many sectors from sport to business, and beyond.

In the world of sport, a collaboration between pharmaceutical giant GSK and racing car manufacturer McClaren focussed on small changes, such as the development by GSK of a hydration drink for Jenson Button who was driving for McLaren.  This drink is an example of the ‘marginal gains’ that helped both companies achieve the highest level of performance in their respective fields.  “We have a continuous improvement approach which we learnt from the McLaren team,” said Mr Connor of McLaren.  “It made us set really small incremental goals – the equivalent of fine tuning the car for ultimate performance.”

Matthew Syed in his book Black Box Thinking, talks about small changes that have made big differences in medicine, aviation and sport, such as changing the shape of two levers in the cockpit of a B-17 plane resulting in a particular and regular type of air accident disappearing overnight!

Stuart Diamond in his book Getting More devotes a whole section to what he calls ‘being incremental’ during negotiations.  He suggests that “Asking the other person to make a big jump makes it easy for the other person to say no” so, “Divide the negotiation into smaller steps, getting anchoring and buy-in at each step”.

So, what does this mean to Your business?

It might be about looking at how you currently market your business and tweaking either your message or the media you are using.

There might be a business process that would benefit you and your customers just by make one or two small changes.

Have a look at the approaches other people are taking that seem to have made a positive difference to their business and take a similar approach.

As I mentioned at the beginning of this blog, revolution can, and does work on some occasions. What has been proven to make a long term significant difference is evolution –  a bit at a time.

Let us know some of the Little Things that have, or will make a big difference in your organisation.

Click here for a gift from us to you – enjoy The Present.

We need you!

Our friends at the University of West London (UWL) and GSM London are both holding events on 19th October 2016 and would really appreciate your support.

It would be great if you would come along to one of the events to show your support for the students by sharing your expertise in business.  It is also YOUR opportunity to showcase both you and your business to a wider audience.

The events are at UWL and GSM London:

UWL are holding an industrial placement and graduate fair for the School of Computing and Engineering, and the Claude Littner Business School; where employers, (up to 35), come on campus between 2-4 hours and speak to the university students about opportunities the employers have on offer.

They will also be offering opportunities for employer-led presentations/workshops, and inspirational talks from business entrepreneurs — like you!

Where: Ealing site, St. Mary’s Road, Ealing W5 5RF.

When: 19th October 12.30 to 3.30pm

Contact: Tracy Mcauliffe Tracy.Mcauliffe@uwl.ac.uk

GSM Re-thinking the startup: integrating multiple perspectives from the ground up taking into consideration the varying perspectives of those who are starting businesses, those who are directly involved in providing support and services to startups, and those who are attempting to create an environment conducive to startups and SME development within a particular local context.
There will therefore be involvement from entrepreneurs and start-ups, private and public service providers and support agencies, business associations and representative organisations, local authorities, and institutions of further and higher education.

Please feel free to bring marketing materials such as pop up stands and leaflets etc.

The event includes:

  • Insights from startup entrepreneurs including University ‘spin-outs’
  • Perspectives of those involved in local enterprise creation and development
  • Discussion of responses required to emerging startup needs and priorities
  • Development of an ‘action plan’ for enhancing conditions and opportunities for startups
  • Opportunity for networking and building B2B connections

Where: GSM London, Horsenden House, 891 Greenford Road UB60HE

When: 19th October 2pm to 5pm

Contact: Paul Moran Formationzone@gsmlondon.ac.uk

Please use this invitation and opportunity to support your local students by contacting Tracy and Paul to explore possibilities.

If you have any questions, please contact me at geofflangtson@glconnects.com or on 07780605868 or via www.glconnects.com

Thank you!

Everybody needs somebody

Whether we work in a large business, a small business or micro-business, we all need somebody to talk to, particularly in the challenging times we are in at the moment.

This is equally applicable in our home lives. We are predominantly social animals and need company to lead a fulfilled life.

Clearly, this need varies according to our individual circumstances and personal preferences; however the need for human interaction is a part of who we are and the importance of it is clearly demonstrated in Maslow’s ‘Hierachy of Needs’.  In his model, Maslow explains that in order to reach our full potential we need to have a social connection with others and know where we fit in the community.

So, what is your support network looking like right now?

Think about who you have to go to, someone that is willing and able to listen to you and understand what is going on for you in your life, – to enable you to grow, develop and be the best you can be.

Think about the following situations and put some names against who is there for you.

So, who:

• Challenges my thinking?
• Cheers me up?
• Can I share my good or bad news with?
• Can I rely on for feedback?
• Is around when I need them and is prepared to sit and listen to me?

These are only a few situations of many that we find ourselves in on our journey through life and discover that sharing them with someone else makes our journey more fulfilling.

Watch this video for some tips and hints about developing your relationships. We have more inspirational videos here for you.

For a FREE full support network template, contact us and we will send you a copy (with guidelines) for you to complete.

Connect with us to let us know how you get on!