Planners’ Picks — August 30, 2022

Planners’ Picks

A collection of resources from CSN planning committee members worth mentioning

As Frankie Valli and the Seasons sang in 1963: “See you in September, See you when the Summer’s through.” Are you ready for the school year? What great initiatives do you have for the fall semester? Our installment of PP is focusing on positivity, listening, and successfully leading remote and hybrid teams.


:: Image of the Week

Cultivate a Spiral of Positivity. Graphic showing downward spiral with jealousy, anger, ego, anxiety, stress, fear / upward spiral with love, honesty, openness, gratitude, self-care, hope.

The Positivity Spiral

“The best way to overcome undesirable or negative thoughts and feelings is to cultivate the positive ones.” – William Atkinson

Spiralling has a negative connotation often symbolising a decline, on the other hand, the upward spiral metaphor is for advancement. It’s a continuous process of upward growth mobilised by self-reinforcing thoughts.

Barbara L. Fredrickson’s “The broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions predicts that positive emotions broaden the scopes of attention and cognition, and, by consequence, initiate upward spirals toward increasing emotional well-being”.

Our #thoughts and #emotions have a powerful impact on our lives. Negative thoughts and emotions narrow thought action repertories that trigger fight-or-flight behaviours whereas positive emotions broaden our perceptions at the moment increasing our need to explore, connect, learn and grow thereby expanding our resources. (Barbara 1998)

So how much positivity is required in our lives? Well, we require the “#Positivity Ratio” of 3:1 i.e. three positive emotions for every negative emotion says, Barbara. People who experience 3 times more positive than negative emotions are healthier, more optimistic, have better relationships and are more creative.

Be it our workplaces or personal lives with #optimistic thinking we can flourish i., e “feeling good” and “doing good” which can lead to an upward spiral wherein we are motivated to create and have more positive moments and experiences.

Much of our #behaviour is unconscious / automated and habituated especially our negative thoughts/emotions which stem from the past or future. But consciously we can break these patterns requiring us to be “present in the moment” and shift to new patterns of thinking and actions. This has to be built with each experience over time.

As Barbara says “The benefits of positive emotions don’t stop after a few minutes of good feelings subside. In fact, the biggest benefit that positive emotions provide is an enhanced ability to build skills and develop resources for use later in life”.

Inject yourself with #positivity and experience the compounding benefits.


:: Resources on Mental Health and Self-Care

4 People Share the Lessons They Learned From Reconnecting With an Old Friend

Dan Pink recently released a book called The Power of Regret. In it, he speaks in depth about the regrets of lost relationships and not keeping up with friends or loved ones until it’s too late.

Reconnecting with an old friend can feel intimidating. You might wonder if too much time has passed, and you might stress whether it’s possible to achieve the same level of closeness that you once shared. But reconnecting with someone from your past, and resurrecting joyful memories can actually be a powerful form of self-care.

The Thrive community shares the insights they learned about themselves — and about life — when they reconnected with an old friend. Their anecdotes will inspire you to reach out to someone you’ve been missing.

“Choose things in your life that will endure, that are a pleasure to use. Choose things that delight you, not because they impress others. And never let things be more important than your family, friends, and your own spirit.” – Marney Morris

The tiny breaks that ease your body and reboot your brain

If you don’t have time for an hour-long break in your workday, a series of ‘microbreaks’ can also have a powerful effect on your body and your mind. Though the breaks are tiny, they can have a disproportionately powerful impact – studies have shown that they can improve workers’ ability to concentrate, change the way they see their jobs, and even help them avoid the typical injuries that people get when they’re tied to their desks all day.


:: Resources on Work Culture & Team Development

The Art of Listening

How does LISTENING help us embrace different perspectives?

There is a difference between the act of listening and the art of listening. Simon Sinek has an interesting take on how mastering the art of listening is the best way to find common ground in opposition and trust.

“The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.” – Dorothy Parker

 Three Little Things That Drive Employee Motivation

Author and presenter Heather Younger writes: “I spoke to a few younger employees that were working at a golf club I was at recently and I asked them, “What makes your boss so great?” The way they responded made me think about how the little things really have such a pull in driving employee motivation. Especially when hearing it from the mouths of the younger generation. They looked up to their boss, their leader, in such a way that they wanted to show up for him daily. Working through the heat, carrying heavy bags, and mentally navigating through people not always being the nicest to them. But because he made their day worthwhile, they went above and beyond for him in return.”


:: Resources on Remote and Hybrid Team Management

The remote work revolution is already reshaping America

Hybrid work isn’t the future. It’s the present.

On average, Americans are working at home 30 percent of the time. Knowledge workers are working at home 3 of every 5 work days. How has your role changed at the UW since COVID?

See the full report in the link below.

Webinar Recording: You Can’t Herd Electric Sheep – Leadership Post-COVID

Successfully leading remote and hybrid teams requires different skills to ensure team alignment and engagement. There are some leadership styles that can be detrimental when applied to a remote or hybrid team, and you need to be proactive in addressing those issues before there is a cultural breakdown.

In You Can’t Herd Electric Sheep: Leadership Post-COVID, author and CPED instructor Shawn Belling outlined some of the characteristics needed from organizational leaders and managers to effectively lead in today’s virtual business environment.


:: Upcoming Events

Student Employment Supervisor Series: Lead, Develop, Grow

Starting September, 20 2022: This virtual professional development series engages student employment supervisors across campus to discuss various topics that impact our students and the student employment experience. This series will focus on hot topics that ensures best practices and enhances student employment at UW-Madison.


New Professional Development Series from The Office of Strategic Consulting

The Office of Strategic Consulting is offering new professional development opportunities this fall, including Ignite: Fueling Organizational Excellence and In Scope: Managing Projects at UW–Madison. Both series are designed to promote and support efforts to improve organizational effectiveness at UW–Madison. The sessions will incorporate focused peer-to-peer conversations and present tools and resources. This year’s Ignite series will include a special miniseries on teambuilding through quality improvement. There are no fees to participate. Registration is required.