Planners’ Picks ― June 21, 2022

Planners’ Picks

A collection of resources from CSN planning committee members worth mentioning

Let’s make it easier to do what matters, work with our strengths, and grow in our current role this week.


:: Image of the Week

Graphic showing what people think leadership is (telling people what to do) and what it really is (Integrity, cast a vision, use of power, praise your team, self-awareness, listen fast and speak last, empathy)

“Getting out of your own concerns and caring about someone else’s life for a while reminds you that you are not the center of the universe.” – Natalie Portman


:: Resources on Empathy in the Workplace

Empathy Starts with Curiosity

One of the effects of social distancing and working from home is that we are left, much more than usual, with ourselves. Which can lead to some loss of our sense of self. Do we even know who we are without all the external recognition? No fancy clothes and cars to project an image. No praise or even rejection. No feedback at all to define us. The author shares how his own emotions have been affected by the pandemic and why he sees this time as a unique moment in which we all need to be more curious — about each other and ourselves.

“Focus on something outside yourself. Devote a slice of your energies towards making the world suck less every week.” – Shonda Rhimes

Tips on Empathy from the book FYI: For Your Improvement by Korn Ferry

Three tips related to empathy from the management training book FYI by Korn Ferry.

  1. Spend most of your time with like-minded people? Connect with diverse individuals. Spend time socially or at work functions with those who are broad in viewpoint and diverse in background. Make it a point to discover new information and exchange ideas. Volunteer to work with people you haven’t had much one-to-one conversation with—senior citizens, the disabled, at-risk youth, immigrants. Host a foreign exchange student for a semester. Build empathy and understanding with people not just like you. On the work front, assemble a team of people of varying perspectives and backgrounds for an important project. Studies show that teams of people with the widest diversity of backgrounds produce the most innovative solutions to problems. Go broad with people to help analyze and make sense of issues. (ch18.5)
  2. Not always considerate? Show that you value others. Do you value and respect others? You may think you are valuing others, but it may be hidden. Bring it to the forefront through your words and actions. Use skills that send the message that you respect and appreciate others. Convey empathy—“I see that you’ve worked hard to make this a success.” Accept that a person’s perspective is their truth—“This appears to be something that is important to you.” Demonstrate that you understand their emotion—“I can see that this is frustrating to you.” Show that you hear their perspective, idea, or concern—“So your idea is to…” Express encouragement by accepting rather than interrogating—“I want to learn more about how you see this…could you help me understand…?” Try out one of these skills each day. You’ll get more comfortable and confident. And your relationships and productivity will flourish. (ch14.6)
  3. Hearing emotional objections? Use empathy with sound thinking. People getting emotional about a proposed change? You might want to try to leave emotion out of it and move immediately to action. But that’s like trying to rearrange the furniture while the room is on fire. Emotion is powerful. Until it is dealt with, it can derail any initiative. To win over groups or individuals, you must first empathize with them. See it from their point of view. Understand and acknowledge emotional objections. Allow time for emotional venting and conversation. Only then—when emotions have been calmed—can you move to the logical side of the equation. Douse the fire first—by listening. Then use good thinking to show the objective soundness of your ideas. Come to an understanding that will work for all parties. (ch24.10)


:: Linkedin Learning

Linkedin Learning: Effortless – Make It Easy to Do What Matters.

Hard work is seen as a virtue—we’ve been told over and over that the path to success takes relentless drive, keeping your nose to the grindstone, and powering through. But too often, rather than leading to success, we find only exhaustion and burnout. Does getting ahead and achieving our goals have to be as hard as we make it? In his book, Effortless: Make It Easy to Do What Matters, Greg McKeown explains how to make your life easier by flipping the script—making important tasks easier and trivial tasks harder. Tune into this audiobook summary from Next Big Idea Club to learn five key insights from Effortless: Make It Easy to Do What Matters.


:: Resources on Mental Health and Self-Care

10 Wellbeing Practices to Guide Leaders

These days, it is more critical than ever that leaders reinvigorate their efforts to build high wellbeing workplaces and cultures. What follows are 10 critically important best practices for enhancing employee wellbeing in the future.

7 Ways To Manage Feeling Overwhelmed at Work

There can be moments at work where you’re assigned many complex assignments, which may overwhelm you. When this occurs, you should take time to organize your tasks and ask for help when needed. Finding ways to keep yourself calm, productive and in control at work allows you to feel organized and submit quality projects. In this article, we review what it means to feel overwhelmed at work, common causes of feeling overwhelmed and tips for overcoming this.


:: Resources on Work Culture & Team Development

The Key to Working Seamlessly with Others? Strengths!

“I’m worried about working for you.” That’s what my new hire said to me, right before he shared what his strengths were and how he worked most effectively. I was blown away — and delighted! Knowing each other’s strengths is KEY to working seamlessly together. But how? How do you find your strengths, communicate them, and identify strengths in others? Listen to this pre-recorded broadcast from Charlene Li to learn how to discover YOUR strengths — and help yourself and others thrive.

Organizations Don’t Know What They’re Missing by Not Listening

Why do managers not listen?

Some reasons:

  1. They feel the need to prove themselves
  2. Some literally do not trust the people they hired
  3. Others believe having their people talk will spill a can of worms

It never occurs to some that people may actually have the answers. Read this great article by Brooke Erol on developing a listening organization.


:: Resources on Self-Leadership Development

You Don’t Have to Switch Roles to Grow

“It’s time for a mindset shift,” that releases “promotions and positions as the default measuring stick of success,” says this TD Magazine piece on finding fulfillment in your current role. While the ‘great resignation’ and the ‘great reshuffle’ point to trends of dissatisfaction at work, the assumption that “career development satisfaction” always requires changing roles is false. If you’re happy where you are but still hunger to stretch yourself, you can pursue growth opportunities outside the narrow trajectory of seeking another promotion. The author provides three examples, the first of which is talking to your boss about creative ways to “heighten visibility” with your broader organization. Without changing job titles, a request for visibility offers “vast opportunities you can pursue from the comfort of your current role,” for example, “attending meetings and conferences, coaching, being on the giving or receiving end of mentorship, leading special high-profile projects, or even reconnecting your work with the bigger picture.”

“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” — Zig Ziglar

Resilient people have a learning and growth mindset

Resilient people have a learning and growth mindset. Take a moment to read the following statements from Jonathan Fisher on Linkedin, and watch his short video on how our behavior affects our outcomes.

Work to be the leader you wish you had

What’s the difference between chasing happiness vs. seeking fulfillment? Knowing your WHY helps clarify the things you need for a fulfilling life. Listen to Simon Sinek on this short video about fulfillment in your work.