Tag Archives: Natural talents

Positive Risk-Taking & Dementia-Friendly Communities

JRF screenshotThe increasing incidence of dementia, and profile it is gaining in the public imagination, means that this is a condition that none of us can ignore. What role might a strengths approach have to play in the way we view people living with dementia? It is all too easy to see the negatives and deficits around someone living with dementia, and to remain oblivious to their capabilities and potential, as well as the supportive resources they have around them. Just because you have a particular label doesn’t mean you have lost all capacity to dream and desire a reasonable quality of life for yourself, as determined by you, not imposed on you by others. However, the so-called ‘community’ can become a progressively challenging place as cognitive capabilities decline.

‘Positive risk-taking’ is a concept well established by the Practice Based Evidence consultancy, and it applies equally to the risks a person living with dementia may wish to take, and to all of us who live in, work in and develop communities. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation commissioned a piece of work from a collaboration of Practice Based Evidence and the Mental Health Foundation to investigate how the concept of positive risk-taking may apply to the government initiative of developing dementia-friendly communities. The think piece is explored in the published ‘Viewpoint’ at the following link:

http://www.jrf.org.uk/publications/how-can-positive-risk-taking-help-build-dementia-friendly-communities

“Those with dementia are still people and they still have stories and they still have character and they’re all individuals and they’re all unique. And they just need to be interacted with on a human level.” [Carey Mulligan].

Check out ‘Still Alice’ as a great portrayal of the tragic descent into dementia, and the impact on a wider family as well as the person living with the condition.

 

Advertisements

Podcast Episode 095: A Funky Case Study

TheStrengthsRevolution_albumart_2-2So, what does funky and creative working look like when you have to implement things through a team? It is one thing for a creative individual to plough their own furrow, but as soon as you get two or more people together the opportunity arises for three or more opinions on how to go about things!

In this episode I outline my consultancy work across 2000-2010 with an assertive outreach team that was based in Kettering, Northamptonshire. The vision was largely developed by the team manager, Sue Jugon, with reference to the training I undertook as part of the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health. It requires careful recruitment, and the type of training and practice development support established at the time as the Practice Based Evidence consultancy.

What it looks like is a commitment to good clear communication, flexible working, and on-going reflection and developmental support. The outcomes were best reflected in the changes seen in what were deemed to be very challenging clients when you devote sufficient respectful time, and deliver client-centred working rather than overblown service rhetoric.

For the full content of this episode click the links to iTunes and Sound Cloud (or go to Stitcher Radio):

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/strengths-revolution-steve/id867043694

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/095-a-funky-case-study/id867043694?i=361448998&mt=2

“The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.” [Phil Jackson]

Podcast Episode 094: Making it funky

TheStrengthsRevolution_albumart_2-2We spend so many hours, and restless nights, focused on work, so don’t we deserve to get enjoyment, fun and creative challenge in our work? Managerial structures, systems, procedures and processes are designed to achieve consistency and homogeneity of output. Monitoring and auditing of standards and targets keeps a watchful eye how we work. So, are we in danger of losing the pursuit of genuine creative endeavour? Where will positive risk-taking fit into this controlled picture?

In this episode I reflect on a review of a previous book I co-authored that identified our approach as ‘Funky Mental Health’. Funky ways of working are about working with and around the rules; breaking the rules in a creative rather than illegal way. It is about pushing the boundaries, but needs a few conditions to support it to happen. I outline how it needs a vision, a guide of what exceptional people do naturally, a flexible environment, and team-working. I also reference a classic example of putting all of this into practice from my Practice Based Evidence consultancy work.

For the full content of this episode click the links to iTunes and Sound Cloud (or go to Stitcher Radio):

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/strengths-revolution-steve/id867043694

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/094-making-it-funky/id867043694?i=360203262&mt=2

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.” [Scott Adams].

Podcast Episode 092: Using StrengthsFinder

TheStrengthsRevolution_albumart_2-2How do you go about identifying your natural talents? Most of us stroll through life largely oblivious to what we may excel at. Either we are subject to the constant focus on our weaknesses, and attempting to get them fixed, in the flawed assumption that this helps us to massively improve our performance. Or, we are simply just not aware of resources that can focus attention more on the task of identifying the talents and developing our true strengths.

The Gallup organisation has not just researched this area for several decades, but also mined the massive database to inform and develop the tools for strengths development. In this episode I reflect on this process of identifying talents and developing strengths. I use my own results from taking the StrengthsFinder test (on two separate occasions) to illustrate the process and themes of talent that have emerged out of the Gallup work.

For the full content of this episode click on the links to iTunes and Sound Cloud (or go to Stitcher Radio):

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/strengths-revolution-steve/id867043694

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/092-using-strengthsfinder/id867043694?i=360203264&mt=2

“The key to human development is building on who you already are.” [Tom Rath]

Podcast Episode 088: Great Leaders & Great Managers

TheStrengthsRevolution_albumart_2-2What qualities do we look for in our great leaders and great managers? Can one person embody both functions? The great leader connects people to a vision of a better future, and a great manager instils quality performance in other people to achieve the steps towards the ultimate goals.

In this episode I use a series of quotes from the business literature to examine the roles of a great leader and a great manager. It is for you the individual to reflect on how these quotes resonate with your own experiences of being led and managed, and of leading and managing. I also briefly reflect on some of my experiences across the last 30 years of being led and managed.

For the full content of this episode click on the links to iTunes and Sound Cloud (or go to Stitcher Radio):

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/strengths-revolution-steve/id867043694

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/088-great-leaders-great-managers/id867043694?i=358117306&mt=2

“The manager asks how and when, the leader asks what and why.” [Warren Bennis].

Podcast Episode 087: Leadership or Management?

TheStrengthsRevolution_albumart_2-2What is the distinction between leadership and management? Do we need to have more of one and less of the other? Ideally we need the good experiences of both.

In this episode I explore the future focus of leadership alongside the present focus of management. Using a series of quotes from the literature the contrast and the complimentary nature of both can emerge, and it is for each of us to reflect on how our own experiences resonate with the messages offered.

Leadership can not be learned from academic theory, it needs to be experienced, and for the experience to be refined through constructive feedback. Management should be about people more than it is about systems and processes. The primary functions of management have a place, but they should not be enabled to become the mainframe of the picture that people have to fit into. It is the strengths and creativity of people that contributes most to achievement, not the managerial tools and targets.

For the full content of this episode click on the links to iTunes and Sound Cloud (or go to Stitcher Radio):

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/strengths-revolution-steve/id867043694

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/087-leadership-or-management/id867043694?i=358117275&mt=2

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” [Peter Drucker].

” Most of what we call management consists of making it difficult for people to get their jobs done.” [Peter Drucker].

Podcast Episode 086: The 12 Questions

TheStrengthsRevolution_albumart_2-2Are we really developing the strengths of our staff in the workplace? I previously outlined my own Team Strengths Assessment, but in this episode I focus on the messages emerging from the Gallup organisation strengths research.

Buckingham & Coffman published First, Break All The Rules in 1999, which included 12 questions we should continually be asking ourselves to identify if we and our employers are really focused on identifying and exploiting what we do best. The questions focus on personal strengths and support and supervision in the workplace. Do you do what you do best every day? This is the key question to focus on, but whether we do or whether we don’t depends so much on having the right conditions within the workplace geared to developing us.

Too access the full content from this episode click the links to iTunes and Sound Cloud (or go to Stitcher Radio):

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/strengths-revolution-steve/id867043694

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/086-the-12-questions/id867043694?i=357225170&mt=2

“Teamwork makes a dream work, but a vision becomes a nightmare when the leader has a big dream and a bad team.” [John C. Maxwell].