The Best-Half
The Best-Half Newsletter

"There is one prerequisite to managing the second half of your life:
You must begin doing so long before you enter it." Peter Drucker

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May 2008

Have you updated your contacts list?

Last week I was looking for a domain name I had registered for a long ago proposed website. I usually store these things in my Outlook contacts list under the domain name. Unfortunately as I couldn't remember the name, I was forced to go through all 1700 or so contacts. It was part nostalgia, part confusion as I came across a lot of names of people I no longer had contact with or in fact never knew in the first place (my contacts list is the product of a merged set of contacts from the Neufeld Group days).

I did however start to delete a lot of names, reflect on others and wonder what happened to ones that I used to be in touch with on a regular basis for either personal or professional reasons.

I wonder what else our contact list tells us?

Are we sticking to the old list because it's comfortable, tried and true and we know where everything is? How many new contacts do we add in a year? If the number is relatively small why? Are we not getting out and meeting new people and seeking new opportunities?

Who would you like to have in your contact list?

Try sitting down and coming up with some new potential contacts for your contacts list. Then make it your goal to meet those individuals and start reinventing your list!

I am in the business of helping people think differently. It is my unique ability. My contact information is below!

905 521 1889

P.S. Below is the "official" announcement of a new strategic alliance with Strategic Solutions Group, a consulting firm that works with Canada's 500 credit unions.

Credit Union consulting firm partners with Best-Half

May 15, 2008 - Burlington, ON - CUMIS Insurance's Strategic Solutions Group is pleased to host a new and innovative information forum designed to help strengthen credit unions' succession planning efforts - and help executives plan a course for retirement.
Designed for chief executive officers, vice presidents, associate vice presidents and managers of credit unions and individuals identified as hi-potential talent, the process is based on proprietary breakthrough tools and strategies.. It helps individuals turn their ideas into goals and their goals into actions. Discussions and activities centre on topics such as succession planning, knowledge and relationship management and legacy leading to concrete commitments and actions designed to help position credit unions for future success.  The Best-Half Discovery Forum is delivered as a one day workshop with pre and post activities and can include sustainable coaching support.
CUMIS Insurance has partnered with Gordon Neufeld a leading expert in retirement planning to present this innovative workshop to credit union leaders: Gordon brings to The Best-Half over 30 years of management and marketing experience in financial services, health care and entrepreneurial business. Mr. Neufeld created the Best-Half to help individuals and organizations obtain a clearer and more focused view of the future in a rapidly changing landscape of demographic change.
"The Best-Half Discovery Forum is a welcome addition to the suite of services we offer credit unions," says Sandi Verrecchia, Managing Director, Strategic Solutions Group, CUMIS Insurance. "Gordon Neufeld's expertise in this field is a natural fit with our mandate to help credit unions be more successful."
The Best-Half Forum is an excellent tool to support credit unions' human resources strategies for retaining mature workers and attracting and retaining high-talent individuals. It also helps credit union leaders identify their personal priorities and embrace the possibilities available to them in their work environments or as they transition from work to individual pursuits.
The next session of the The Best-Half Forum, is June 25th in Toronto, ON. To sign-up or to find out more about how this workshop can help you and your credit union, please contact Leanne Grechulk at 1-800-263-9120, extension 4820 or via e-mail at
About Strategic Solutions Group
The Strategic Solutions Group is a team of consultants focused on developing customer relationship strategies to promote the success of credit unions through leadership in knowledge and innovation.  It is the only Canadian consultant team solely dedicated to the credit union marketplace.
About The CUMIS Group Limited
The CUMIS Group Limited (CUMIS) partners with credit unions to deliver competitive insurance and financial solutions. In doing so, it creates financial security and promotes the growth and success of the credit union system in Canada. Its principal companies are CUMIS Life Insurance Company and CUMIS General Insurance Company. CUMIS also has a 50 per cent interest in CUIS Brokerage Services Limited and Credential Financial Inc. CUMIS has management responsibility for its joint marketing program with The Co-operators, which offers an integrated portfolio of both organizations' insurance products and related services to credit unions under the banner of 'CUMIS Insurance in partnership with The Co-operators'.

Personality tests - called controversial
In a recent Globe and Mail (Wed. May 21, 08) there is a long article on the value of personality testing in the work place. The article, provides a balanced assessment of tests and gives some DO's and DON'TS
for employers and employees. I was interested to see how Kolbe Assessments, which are instinct based and not personality based would stack up.

For employers

Beware of language differences - for many English is not their first language
Stick with tests that are valid (actually measure what they say they are measuring) and reliable (results can be closely replicated upon repeated application)
Be mindful of legalities around privacy laws and human rights
Ensure the process is open and that individuals are given the opportunity to see their results
Ensure the person administering the assessment is certified and is qualified to provide feedback on the results.

For employees

Make sure you get to see the results
Stick to tests that have statistics that back-up their reliability and validity
Remember that your personality is not fixed in stone and may vary considerably
If the test seems too personal or irrelevant to the job you can decline to take it.

This list highlights some of the strong reasons organizations are moving away from personality  towards what Kolbe measures: Instinct. Your instincts don't change and this is why a Kolbe Assessment is almost always similar no matter how much time passes between assessments. We also know that Kolbe Assessments are both highly reliable and valid and the scientific studies to measure this are available only through Certified Kolbe coaches. (I am one of a small number of independent coach/consultants in Canada.

Kolbe is also used in the hiring process because it is unbiased in both gender, age  and race.

The Best-Half puts people  in touch with what really matters to them at any stage of their career and shows them how to find purpose, new meaning and engagement in both their work and home life. - hint: it's all about legacy and possibility! For employers the Best-Half establishes a dialogue between the employee and the organization allowing for effective medium and long range resource planning and succession planning throughout the entire spectrum of an individual's career.

Call us if you want to help your people plan for the future. It's going to be here before you know it (the future that is...)

Gordon Neufeld
The Best-Half