Wednesday, 9 November 2016

#cipdace16 blog 2 - session A1

After an all too quick networking coffee break and catching up with people I've not seen for ages, I'm back in a session, this time A1 and unlocking performance. 

Steve Head was talking about making the 1% performance difference. This is similar to the concept of marginal gains as espoused by Matthew Syed and Clive Woodward last year and its because of my personal and professional interest in this concept and it's links to sports and coaching that I went to those and this session. 

Steve talked about why coaching gives him energy, and I agree. It's about helping people to improve themselves. He showed a slide with some equations and one was wrong. He didn't point this out but asked people to give feedback on the slide, and lots of people pointed out the error rather than pointing out that 3/4 of the equations were right. His point was that we need to focus on the good stuff. You need to notice the bad stuff and do something about it, but focus on the good stuff. People who focus on the bad stuff are mood hoovers. 

To be honest I found this talk hard to blog because he was so fast and funny and it was hard to keep up. 

He gave us all a challenge called the Four Minute Rule. For the first four minutes of being with someone each day, whether at home or at work, you're not allowed to say or do anything negative or critical. This builds the habit of focusing on the good stuff, and builds engagement. 

Can you manage this?

Steve talked about The Curse of the Strong. Essentially talking about mental breakdowns, and how it is often the strong people who break down, not those who are generally weaker. He says there are some things that predispose people to mental stresses, and he listed nine things that I couldn't capture whilst typing, but they were pretty general statements that most people could recognise in themselves. He recommended creating your own Gob (Glimpse Of Brilliance) File where you collate all the compliments you gather for anything you do. I used to do this and called it my Trumpet File, and it was great to every now and again flick through it, and it was a massive boost to my confidence, ego and overall mental wellbeing. 

I'm not sure why I stopped, but it was never hard to keep going. 

I may restart this. 

Steve's talk was helpful in sharing some easy to do tips and techniques to improve the culture of performance and success.

He then introduced Matt King OBE. 

Matt shared his own story, starting with a horrific rugby accident in 2004 which broke his neck and left him paraplegic. His story was heartbreaking and I can't imagine how he must have felt in his own mind, but his descriptions were powerful and emotional. 

This too was hard to cover because of the power of the talk and because of an unfortunate incident where an audience member fainted and this distracted people. 

But Matt talked about identifying what your Everest is. For him it was getting his life back and he knew, just like climbing Everest, that it could not be achieved in one go or in the short term. He encouraged each one of us to identify what our personal Everest was, and to break it down into small, manageable, daily goals. 

Matt's journey was inspirational. He showed unlimited drive and determination and it was truly humbling to listen to his story. He linked back to Steve's opening speech and the 149 effect. Focus on the good things - his drive and desire, his support network and the parts of him (his brain) that were still working, rather than the bad stuff and the things that were broken. 


Apologies for the poor quality of this blog because the talks were so good I got pulled into the emotion in the room. 

Till next time...


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