Category Archives: Productivity

Fronting up back-to-back meetings

by Linda Feerick

“I really don’t mind when a meeting overruns and we don’t get much done” said no one. Ever. At a recent Alliance meeting we were reviewing some key themes from our coaching portfolio, mining for insights that may be gold dust for our clients. Said clients include law firms, financial services, media, public sector, charities, retail, telecoms and more. The theme of too many and poor meetings came up for all of us and sadly, it has been around for ages. It doesn’t seem to matter which profession you are in, what level you work at, or how you harness technology there is a depressing familiarity that it is hard to get meetings right, either in quantity or quality. Even giving it a different name (fancy attending a “huddle” anyone?) doesn’t help. In times of financial pressure, meetings are very expensive. Indeed, one of us had pointed out to our client that their meetings cost the business £000s and the return was negligible. (more…)

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The Power of the Power Hour: How to get more done

by Liz Gooster

I love my Power Hours. Can’t get enough of them! That’s true in a very real sense, because I don’t manage them as often as I’d like, and if I could, I’m sure I would be more productive, more effective, more satisfied, happier … all that wonderful stuff. So what am I talking about? For me a Power Hour is a dedicated time of uninterrupted focus on something I really want or need to make progress on. (more…)

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Flow into Autumn: How to recharge your batteries with a new challenge

By Ann Orton

1-img_0289It’s the Autumn Equinox, when we officially move into autumn and the day is evenly split between light and dark. It feels like a timely point to share my reflections on an aspect of my summer. In early August, I took myself off to the wild and unspoilt countryside of the Welsh Borders to a stone carving course. It was an experiment:  on two consecutive summers several years ago I had attended a four-day stone carving course at Chelsea College of Art next to Tate Britain, learning the basics in the original mortuary of what was the Royal Army Medical College, and commuting from home.  But the course had been dropped. (more…)

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Change Our Habits, Change Our Lives

By Liz Gooster

Gretchen Rubin

Do you make your bed in the morning? If you do, that’s good. If you don’t – yet – starting to do so could make a drastic difference to your clarity of mind. Sounds trivial, and yet in her extensive research into the habits that work for us, and against us, Gretchen Rubin, author of bestselling The Happiness Project and now Better Than Before, has found that there is significant truth behind the notion that outer order contributes to inner calm. And what about those people who make their hotel bed on the day they checkout? Well, that’s a whole other category … (more…)

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Achieving Peak Performance

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By Liz Gooster

Alliance partner Juan Coto has been working closely with tennis player Johanna Konta for over a year. As Johanna soars from one achievement to the next – as I write she has just beaten Zhang Shuai to win herself a place in the semi-finals of the Australian Open – in The Alliance we are reflecting on some of the factors that contribute to peak performance, in business as well as sport. While it might sound counter-inuitive, once you approach the top levels of any field, success is not mainly due to technical ability or expertise. In a Grand Slam match, it’s unlikely you will lose because you don’t know how to serve. If you’re hired as a lawyer from a top tier firm, you’re expected to know the law. These skills are a hygiene factor, the price of entry if you like – they’re a necessary but not sufficient condition for success. (more…)

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