A year of progress

A year ago (2018-01-11)
Last week (2019-01-09)

It’s pretty amazing what can get done in a year! We went from a dirt path to a two storey space.

Self Control Psychology Myth

Interesting article on self control.

The paper stumbled on a paradox: The people who were the best at self-control — the ones who most readily agreed to survey questions like “I am good at resisting temptations” — reported fewer temptations throughout the study period.


Landscaping Underway

Landscaping underway at my Montcrest School project. The sidewalk has been widened based upon the City of Toronto’s requirements and there is a substantial amount of permeable paving going in to deal with the storm water on site. Photo taken on 2019-01-09.

Miserable staff don’t make money

Link: https://www.theguardian.com/money/2018/nov/05/firms-switched-four-day-week-increase-efficiency-health-happiness

Article about how some companies are moving to 4 day work weeks. And not 4 ten hour days, just 4 normal days and still earning the typical 5 day salary.

The company began with a six-week trial and found that they achieved just as much – and there were even signs of growth. The key to the scheme’s success, Leigh says, is how happy his employees now are. “There are two ways to make money in my line of work,” he says, “retain clients and get new ones. Miserable, tired staff can’t do either.”

Price is also concerned by the sentiment behind the movement, which he says is, in part, “the assumption that work isn’t good, so you should do less of it”. He points to the phrase “work-life balance”, which “implies that life is not work”, and argues that rather than concentrating on the quantity of work we do, we should focus on the quality.

For Peebles, the time is right to reassess. “Business is different today than 30 years ago, when I couldn’t send an email, couldn’t shop online, had to use a fax machine. So why are we working the same way?”

The Long Game

How much of your success do you attribute to luck? This article makes the case that a lot of success comes from playing the long game and making regular investments in yourself. Worth the read.

How To Design Workplaces For Humans, Not Generations

Here is a great article from Work Design Magazine on how to design your work space based upon the tasks being performed, not the age of the occupants.

One of the most interesting takeaways that came out of analyzing these Workplace Archetypes was that they crossed lines of age, tenure, and title throughout the organization. Instead, what differentiated the Workplace Archetypes were the roles, responsibilities, and tasks of individuals and departments. 

Meredith McCarthy

HBR: A 4-Step Plan to Make Your Q&A More Audience-Friendly

Here is an interesting article from the Harvard Business Review with a helpful framework for presentations. The title of the article is targeted at Q&A sessions but I found the content to have a wider application than that.

Despite how effective interviews can be in theory, however, they are often difficult to execute in practice. As a result, audience members are often left feeling disengaged and unsatisfied while guests struggle to inform and engage in a way that resonates.

A good Q&A invites the audience into the experience.  Two effective ways to do this are by (1) using inclusive language and (2) polling the audience.

link: https://hbr.org/2018/09/a-4-step-plan-to-make-your-qa-more-audience-friendly

The City that banned cars

Updated: How-to create a reverse schedule in MS project

Every wanted to build a schedule in reverse so you know how when you need to start? Here’s my quick how-to post that I recently updated to include some screen captures to make the whole process more clear. Let me know if this was helpful!

Link: https://www.petervk.com/2014/07/23/how-to-create-a-reverse-schedule-in-ms-project/

How Bosses Waste their employees time

This is a interesting article from the WSJ that has several examples of wasteful activities / programs started just because a CEO or president says something. Have you seen anything like this at your company?

The concluding bit about embracing complaints, and then who they should consider for a promotion is also very interesting:

“Research on psychological safety led by Amy Edmondson at the Harvard Business School shows that the best employees for promoting organizational learning are often those who never leave well enough alone, pointing out mistakes and flawed practices. But those who management rates as top performers are often those who silently do what they’re told and what has always been done—and don’t annoy their superiors with complaints and questions about flawed practices.”

Source link: https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-bosses-waste-their-employees-time-1534126140

Let me know what you think!