A Coaching Moment
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March 2009
Song titles for the times
I have been listening to the radio lately and I think I have heard a trend surfacing. Songs being played, both new and old are mirroring the present political and economic climate.
This all started when I heard Crazy, by Seal. Those of you who are familiar with this can now hum along...But we're never gonna survive, unless... we get a little crazy... Could we be looking at a new anthem for the times? I for one am waiting for some crazy ideas to come forth instead of throwing money at a problem (lots of money). It's always easy to think we can pay our way out of a mess especially when those writing cheques are not directly related to the making of the money.

Other top ten songs currently on iTunes include: My Life Would Suck Without You by Kelly Clarkson and Dead and Gone by someone called T.I. Both of these songs are obviously about retirement funds as well as retirement dreams. Home Sweet Home by Carrie Underwood is likely an homage to ABCP and the plummeting home values we are seeing. The number one song, is Right Round by someone named Flo Rida. Perhaps this is also an anthem to the state of Florida with the sucking sound of house prices going down the toilet as a background beat. Those of us of a certain age and cultural background who embraced a freer lifestyle of the sixties will likely remember an artist called Richard Farina. His 15 minutes of fame came from marrying Joan Baez' sister Mimi and writing a book titled
"Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me." This was then made into a song. As they used to say on American Bandstand when Dick Clark would ask the kids why they liked a particular song; "It's got a good beat and it's easy to dance to."
Music is simply a way to make sense of the world in both certain and uncertain times. We identify with the themes, the words and even the artists as a mirror on society. As a way of creating certainty and confidence in our lives we need to look further to understand the uncertainty and the lack of confidence. Our role is to put in place strategies and actions to increase certainty in our abilities, possibilities and preferred outcomes. Remember life will take big shifts or changes but values remain the constant.

In the Best-Half we approach change as a positive using reinvention using legacy, possibility and values to define our perfect future. This creative process leads to confidence in all our futures. Yesterday, CNN reported volunteerism in the USA is at an all time high. Is this a result of the Obama era or could it be a realization that when people contribute, they simply feel better about themselves and the world in which they live? I wrote about this phenomena of contribution last month.
The Value of a Plan B

The New York Times now has a topics list called: Credit Crisis - the Essentials. A recent article by Ji Lee, titled Remember the old plan B, talks about Americans who are hunkering down and making the best of a worst-case scenario. At first read it doesn't sound much different than before. People continue looking to discover their passions and possibilities and move away from the "time and effort" economy. The difference that is distinct is that many people have been pushed into making choices, decisions and shifts at a much faster rate than what they would normally feel comfortable doing. This creates a fear and panic motivation instead of coming from a contribution and possibility motivation. Completely understandable when the wolf is at, or is perceived to be at the door.
For employers who are operating on a dictum of reduce head-count, the opportunity to help people determine their Plan B, becomes an important part of the reduced head-count strategy. Helping Fact Finders make sense of the situation either through traditional out-placement or Best-Half Process helps to soften the landing and preserve some positive feelings towards the organization.
To assist in building the new Plan B for existing or departing employees we are introducing My Best-Half Life™. This is a ten session cost effective lunch and learn program that takes people through the Best-Half Process in a group environment with a skilled facilitator. This process provides people with the tools they need to build on their strengths, realize possibilities and take positive action on opportunities both professionally and personally.
While on the topic of people and strengths, Kathy Kolbe recently had this to say about the value of knowing your people's instinctive strengths.  "Never has what Kolbe does mattered so much to so many. We're proud to have discovered the universal, instinct-based strengths that aren't eroded by a bad economy, and don't change with the stock market. Stress levels have magnified, increasing the need for our immediate and practical solutions. Those who use our methods to get more done with fewer people don't get feel-good promises. They get money back guarantees. Years of proving we know which teams will and won't be productive make Kolbe experts the go-to strategists. Why would anyone decide who to lay off without using Kolbe analytics to check out the consequences? So you cut your costs - did you also get rid of the only person who had the right instincts for keeping track of the cash? Today's economy requires clear leaders, not cheerleaders. Now's the time to make every penny and every person count."
Our clients are making good use of their Kolbe information by looking at team efficiency and effectiveness as a way of managing their people within limited budgets and resources.  Now's the time to fine-tune the Synergy on every team, and make sure every person we place on it has the instincts for improving the team's efficiency and effectiveness. Now's the time to help everyone you know discover how they can leverage their conative strengths.

"The Future belongs to those who add value in the present." Michael Kelly, The Dream Manager.

Who We Are...At the heart of it, we are helpful. Our clients are busy, successful, smart and curious. We approach any relationship with a sense of gratitude, generosity and respect. We like to have fun. Our work is about uncovering our client's perspective and creating certainty, expanding and discovering creativity and possibility and above all taking action.
We understand and are experts in change from a theoretical and a practical basis. We know the value of engagement, communication and the importance of creating a sense of confidence.
We provide all of the human development side of strategic HR. We help hire the right people. We work with teams including boards of directors so they can become more effective and more efficient. We coach leaders; sometimes with our proprietary process called The Best-Half™. Organizations looking to develop or implement strategic plans have us on speed-dial. Many of our clients have said "we are nice people to work with."