Monthly Archives: February 2014

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Cohen Brown Management Group – Team Work


Cohen Brown Management Group - Team Work

All smiles…Senior (European) Consultant Claudia Irmer and Vice Presiden & Managing Director of Consulting Solutions Jim Bywater finishing the day at the Customer Experience Exchange in Syon, London UK…Go Team!

Shhhh…I’m trying to hear myself think


Time Bandit Solution

I am a social being.

I much prefer to work in a team than be a one-person show, even if it means sharing the credit with others. I much prefer brainstorming with others than alone, just me and my own psyche! Mostly, that is what I feel life is all about…people sharing ideas, generating new ventures together, experiencing both challenges and success together.

So, then why is it despite my set of beliefs and core values and my social nature, that at times if I don’t pull myself out and provide myself and my psyche some solitude, some space, that I literally feel ill? Sometimes I just have to pull myself away from external stimuli in order to prevent and decrease internal chaos. As Billy Holiday sings, I have to be ‘In my Solitude’ (which, if you don’t know it, is a beautiful but melancholy tune).

But in this fast-paced, technologically heavy world, where if you can’t be reached in person, you will be reached by phone, requested to do a video chat, receive automatic texts, instant chat, etc. etc., what is truly melancholic in my view is not having some form of ‘Quiet Time’ to detox your brain and still your mind!

Most of us know in our gut that in order to generate a new vision, and new and inspiring ideas, you need to find the calm within.

You need to be able to find the space and time to hear yourself think.

You need to go through some sort of ‘mental hygiene’ process and make time for some Quiet Time, de-stress, anything that suits you best, as long as it removes you even for a few regular minutes per week from the chaos.

Neda Bayat is Global Business Consultant for Cohen Brown Management Group, Inc. and Breakthrough PerformanceTech, LLC.

I enjoyed reading Mr. Edward Brown’s The Time Bandit Solution because the chapter on Quiet Time and the topic of Mental Hygiene really spoke to me, and confirmed what I knew to be true all along.

Now, I need to implement the rest of the techniques Mr. Brown has taught me to ‘create the time’ to ‘hear myself think!’

Time Bandit Solution dust-cover-2

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Speed It Up Boys! Coping with Layoffs.


lucy

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This morning I read in Forbes, “Layoffs in Tech Now a Permanent Feature.”  Dell, JC Penney, and Disney are announcing fresh layoffs.

It made me think of Lucy in the Chocolate Factory.  You know – that classic routine where a frantic Lucille Ball can’t cope with the chocolates coming faster and faster down the conveyor belt.  But like George Bernard Shaw said, “When a thing is funny, search it carefully for a hidden truth.”

The truth is, layoffs leave people with more work to get done, but no more time in which to do it.  If you are laying off people and not providing for the crushing impact on the remaining staff, how are you any different from Lucy’s boss going, “Speed it up boys”?  How will your employees not end up pulling a Lucy:  becoming so stressed they stop performing well or so discouraged they quit?

Here are two vital statistics if your company is cutting:

  1. Interruptions cost the U.S. economy $588 billion a year.  That’s according to a report by Basex.
  2. The average worker loses 40-60% of their time to interruptions.  That’s from years of research by my own company, self-reported by our clients. That’s right – half of their precious time is stolen from them by unplanned, unwanted, and unproductive interruptions!

If you’re planning layoffs, or if your company has had one recently, or if your company is trying to avoid one, you need to know how to recover employee time stolen by interruptions.  I wrote a book that tells you how:  The Time Bandit Solution….

dust-cover-2Edward G. Brown is President, Co-Chairman, and co-founder of Cohen Brown Management Group, the leading sales and service culture change specialist for the financial services industry. 

To Get Your Team To Embrace Change, Reverse The Alphabet!


change, behavior change

Many people in my part of the world will say they “love the change of seasons.” For a change of pace I’ll say, “Let’s eat dinner at the park.”  I always get grilled chicken salad for lunch, but yesterday I changed up and ordered tuna.  Changing into my jeans after work feels great!   I’ve been known to change my hairstyle and color more than once a year.

Change is good!  Change is stimulating!  Change keeps you going, vibrant!  Okay, right. So when you tell your team about change, why don’t they all say, “This is great!  I’m ready to change.”?

Things change.  It has taken millions of years to populate the earth with the current numbers, and it won’t take long to double that.  With more people, comes more thinking, and with more thinking comes more change.  We need to face it – change is inevitable.

So when you must lead change, how do you make it appealing to your team?

A friend has a great technique.  She knows that the typical “A-B-C” approach doesn’t work, that being:  explain the Actions someone needs to take, then incorporate the Behaviors (such as patience, empathy), and then provide the Concept with benefits. The reality is the listener will not hear B and C because they are so hung up on the actions.

My friend reverses it.  She goes C-B-A.  Provide the Concept along with the benefits, then the Behaviors needed, and only then the Actions needed to accomplish the goal.  By the time she gets to the Actions, her listeners are right there with her.

Try it!  It really works!

And don’t forget.  Even when your teams embrace change, make sure it sticks.  Follow C-B-A with creative behavioral embedding techniques.

Cynthia Whitmer Griffith currently serves as Performance Results Network Results Consultant for Community Banks and Credit Unions at Cohen Brown Management Group, Inc. Cynthia works with clients to assist them in establishing and growing a culture of World-Standard sales and service.

For more information on how you can successfully lead and embed change in your organization, visit www.cbmg.com, or write me at Cynthia_Griffith@cbmg.com.