What If We Had User Manuals for People?

User manual with magnifying glass. User guide document and magnifier. Handbook, handbook, instruction and guidebook vector icon
Dr. Adam Grant suggests that we should all get clear on what makes us tick in order to play better with others. 

What if we issued user-manual that made it easier for people to work with us? It’s almost certain that conflicts and misunderstandings would decrease and productivity would increase.

That’s exactly what Dr. Adam Grant decided to do, after receiving some negative feedback from members of his team. He decided that it would be helpful for those around him to provide him with some specific feedback about his strengths and his blind spots.

It turns out that the user manual was a brilliant document that enabled people to interact with Grant in an effective, productive manner. Many people and companies have adopted this strategy in their businesses and organizations.

What if we took this approach with school? It’s possible we could do this with our colleagues, with our students, even with our administration to amplify connections.

Here’s how you can start.

Part I:

Here are the questions that Dr. Grant suggests you should reflect on the following three questions:  ask when creating your own personal User Manual:

  1. What are my strengths? How can someone bring these out in me?
  2. What are my weaknesses? What tends to bring those out?
  3. What are some of my “bright spots” (the spots that are strengths I might tend to see)?

Part II:

Think of 5-10 people who work, live, and play alongside you and ask them to answer some questions about you. These should be you genuinely like and trust. You could send out a google doc or a quick email to see what comes back.

  1. Reflected Best-Self: Ask 15-20 colleagues to contribute stories of times when you were at your best.
  2. Next, analyse the stories and find common themes. What activates my being at my best?
  3. Ask these colleagues to reflect on the following questions about you:
    1. What are my blind spots?
    2. Triggers that bring out the worst in me?
    3. What do you wish you knew about me when we first started working together?

Take all of this information and put it into a one-pager that highlights your strengths, stretches (with triggers), and ideal communication style.

 

Written by Morgane Michael #smallactbigimpact #kindsight101

 

 

 

Ep. 82: The More We Get Together (With Raffi)

 

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Millions know Raffi for his work as a children’s entertainer whose string of gold and platinum-selling recordings in North America includes his classic “Baby Beluga” song with its beloved melody and lyrics. But a very interesting piece of Raffi’s story is not as well known: Raffi’s pioneering commitment to honouring his young fans changed the way we came to view music made for children. Founding his own record label, Troubadour, then folk musician Raffi set out on a path that rescued children’s recordings from bargain bin pricing and sub-par production values.

In 1976, with help from Ken Whiteley and Daniel Lanois, Raffi made sure that his recordings met the highest standards. Raffi convinced retailers that parents would pay regular price for quality music for their children, and he was right. Teachers, parents and kids took an immediate liking to the kind of songwriting and recording Raffi offered, perhaps because of the respect that was obvious in his material and the playful delivery that always clicked with the kids. Soon, the media were knocking at Raffi’s door.

Because of his belief that children should not be exposed to too much television viewing and that they should not be directly marketed to, during his thirty-year career as a superstar of kid’s music Raffi refused all offers for commercial television shows and commercial endorsements. Even recently, when approached by a Hollywood production company to do a film based on “Baby Beluga,” he declined when told that the film’s marketing would include direct advertising to children. This is only one of a series of lucrative deals Raffi and Troubadour have declined over the years.


https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/kindsight-101/id1412489005?mt=2

Ep. 80 Truly Human Leadership (With Bob Chapman)

 

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https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/kindsight-101/id1412489005?mt=2

In our conversation, we discuss the one tweak we can all make to transform our educational learning spaces and businesses, the responsibilities every leader has in an organization, how to rethink antiquated approaches to leadership, and how to measure true success in terms of the positive impact you have on others. Mr. Chapman cares deeply about the mental health of the workforce and believes that caring and courage are the most important metrics in any leadership team. You can find more about Barry-Wehmiller by typing in https://www.barrywehmiller.com/

Or more about Truly Human Leadership by visiting his website: TrulyHumanLeadership.com

Recently named the #3 CEO in the world by Inc., Bob Chapman is very intentional about using his platform as a business leader to build a better world.

Chapman is Chairman and CEO of St. Louis, MO-based Barry-Wehmiller, a $3B global manufacturing business with almost 12,000 team members. The company began as a small pasteurizing and bottle washer business in 1885 and, through acquisition and organic growth, has grown into 12 business units serving primarily the packaging, paper converting, sheeting and corrugating industries. Chapman became the senior executive of this private company in 1975 at age 30 when the 80-year-old business had $20 million in revenue, outdated technology and a very weak financial position. Despite the obstacles, Chapman applied a unique blend of strategy and culture over the next 40 years in leading Barry-Wehmiller through more than 100 successful acquisitions.

Over the past two decades, a series of realizations led him away from traditional management practices to what he now calls Truly Human Leadership–a people-centric approach where his employees feel valued, cared for, and an integral part of the company’s purpose. At Barry-Wehmiller, they have a unique measure of success: by the way they touch the lives of people.

Chapman’s experiences and the transformation he championed were the inspiration behind his 2015 WSJ bestseller Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring for Your People Like Family. The book is co-authored by Raj Sisodia, founder and co-author of Conscious Capitalism.

Chapman regularly writes about the powerful intersection of people-centric leadership and good business strategy on his blog, TrulyHumanLeadership.com, and on LinkedIn, where he is an Editor’s pick. In 2016, Harvard Business School released a case study featuring Barry-Wehmiller’s unique approach to business.

Chapman’s list of speaking engagements include the Aspen Ideas Festival, Conscious Capitalism events, Fortune Scale Up Summit, TEDxScottAFB, the 2016 US Congressional Retreat, WorldBlu, CEO Global Leaders Forum, International City Managers Association, the AME International Conference, Institute for Healthcare Consumerism Forum, Shingo Prize for Manufacturing Excellence Conference, HERO Forum for Employee Health Management, and numerous others.

Chapman shares his leadership journey and the story of Barry-Wehmiller whenever he can as it is an example of the way businesses and organizations should be: focused on creating value for all stakeholders—team members, customers, communities and shareholders. Not only is it the right thing to do, it creates meaning and fulfillment for team members.

Chapman has a BA from Indiana University and an MBA from Michigan. He spent his early career as an accountant with Price Waterhouse.

For more info about Bob, please contact mary.rudder@barry-wehmiller.com

Advice for My Children

Dear Child,

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A Letter to My Children

You are perfect just as you are. Remember that it’s never too late to unbecome who the world thought you were supposed to be.

There are times when you might forget your own worth. You might twist yourself in a pretzel to make someone else happy, but make yourself miserable. Just be yourself.

It is possible to be brave and scared at the same time. Don’t let fear to stop you from doing the things that bring you happiness.

Seek joy! Be enthusiastic even when others aren’t. Laugh so hard your belly hurts. Surround yourself with people who lift you up. Find sparks of happiness in tiny, ordinary moments.

The only certain thing in life is that one day you will be faced with uncertainty. You can’t control what happens to you, but you do have power over how you react to it. Write your own story.

Sometimes, hurt people hurt people. When someone tries to dim your light, remember that it takes courage to keep shining bright.

It’s ok to cry. If you don’t let the sad out, sad can turn into mad. Whether you are a boy or a girl, everyone feels sad sometimes.

Show up for your loved ones when they are suffering. Sit alongside them without needing to fix them. Simple isn’t always easy.

There will be times when you will have to protect your heart. It is possible to be a kind person and still say ‘no.’

Choose people who choose you. Surround yourself with those who see your gifts. Seek out people who already believe in you. Don’t waste time proving yourself. You might not be for everyone. And that’s ok.

Learn to give compliments from the heart. And most importantly, learn to accept compliments with grace.

The way you speak to people matters. Always speak with kindness in your heart. You just never know what they are struggling to overcome.

Don’t make yourself small in order to fit the places you’ve outgrown. It’s ok to dream big, spread your wings, and fly!

Everyone is capable of creativity. Your work will always be bad before its good. Make lots of it. Share your gifts with the world. Keep creating. Keep sharing. Keep getting better.

Done is better than perfect. Perfect is impossible. Shoot for your best, instead.

At times, you might get knocked down. Keep getting up. If you’re tired, allow yourself to rest. Keep trying. The only way to bounce forward, is to never fully give up.

Listen to others with an open heart, and don’t be afraid to speak up for what you believe in.

Every so often, ask yourself: Am I proud of the way I make people feel?

Clap for friends and strangers even when you envy their success. Their victories don’t equal your failure.

Take care of your body. Feed it healthy foods. Move it, every day.

Take care of your mind. Feed it healthy thoughts. Give it the gift of stillness, every day.

Pick yourself. Don’t wait for permission to change the world. Express yourself. Find your voice. Don’t wait. Start now.

Walk through the world trusting the compass in your hand and following the whispers of curiosity on your heart. You might be unsure of your destination right now, have faith that it’ll all make sense in the end.

Love, Mom

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ep 79: The Secret to Health and Happiness (With Gail Markin)

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https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/kindsight-101/id1412489005?mt=2

Have you ever wondered what the number one predictor for high-achieving teams was? What about optimizing the brain’s most basic neurochemicals to live a happier life? Did you know that there are three main ingredients to create belonging in the work place, and anyone, irrespective of title can contribute to doing so? In our episode with Gail Markin, we’ll be answering these questions and more. I was totally blown away by the TED talk this amazing educator gave this past summer and want to share all the juicy learning with you! You can connect with her @markingail on twitter.

Notes:
Dr. Brene Brown’s master list of emotions
Dr. Lieberman’s work on physical vs. emotional pain

Gail Markin is a Middle School Counsellor and a District Support Teacher for Social Emotional Learning in Langley, British Columbia. Gail has a background in social work, family counselling and parent education. Gail is a member the BC School Centred Mental Health Coalition, Social Emotional Learning BC and the Langley School District Wellness Team. She is passionate about promoting and supporting mental health and wellness for all. Here is the talk that was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx

The 4 Tendencies (Gretchen Rubin)

https---blogs-images.forbes.com-naginaabdullah-files-2017-09-FourTendenciesJacketBasedGraph-1Ever wonder why some people are really good at following through when they’re trying to nail down a new health habit or when they endeavour to quit a harmful vice?

Gretchen Rubin, author of the 4 Tendencies explains that we all fall into one of the 4 personality tendencies and that these tendencies have remarkable implications on the way we live our lives. We learn that there are pros and drawbacks to every tendency and that, if we’re smart, we can harness the strengths in order to live our best life. Not only can we impact our own lives positively, but having a working knowledge of the framework can help us navigate the various personalities in our lives from our bosses, to our children, to our spouses, to our adversaries, and to various stakeholders in our lives.

Here’s a brief breakdown of the tendencies according to Gretchen Rubin:

Rubins-Four-Tendencies

Here is a test that’ll help you identify your tendency

Here are some helpful ways you can reframe the way you approach expectations based on your tendency:

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How does knowing your tendency change the way you interact with others?

Feel free to share with others!

#kindsight101 #smallactbigimpact #podcast #education

Ep 78: The Unity Mandala (With Raphael Divi)

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Raphael Vincent a Haitian-born artist and activist based out of Victoria, British Columbia, who celebrates the concept of strength through unity in order to bring a sense of belonging and identity to school-aged students through the creation of collaborative mandalas made from a common household item.

Raphael hopes to create a healing symbol for those involved in the system and bringing students together for the greater good.

In this conversation, we talk about art as a healing force, the unity of humanity, and Raphael shares an easy exercise that can help any creativity skeptic regain a sense of creativity.
You can find out more about Raphael on his website https://www.theunitymandala.com or by following him on Instagram at raphaeldivi

Ep 77: The 5 Second Key to Courage (With Amy Perkins)

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https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/kindsight-101/id1412489005?mt=2

Have you ever dreamed of a doing extraordinary things with your life but haven’t known where to start?

Amy Perkins, an educator and teacher coach turned entrepreneur and influencer, walked away from a 25 year career and an overwhelming sense of imposter syndrome to embrace her true purpose by unlocking the key to courage. In this interview, she shares her specific three-step process for manifesting your dreams a process through which she was able to get one-on-one coaching with Mel Robbins, get a one-on-one facetime for her daughter with a world famous actor, get to know Seth Godin, helped her husband to become the leading sales person in his division, win international trips across the world, and change lives.

Amy shares Mel Robbin’s 5 second rule that helped her to reclaim her life. She discusses tuning into the whispers that lead you closer to your purpose, how to create family affirmations, how to walk the talk when it comes to believing in yourself. She also explores some of the pitfalls of education and how to overcome the failures of ineffective leaders by speaking truth to power. You will come away inspired, with the belief that you too can live an extraordinary life! Follow her @amyperkins on Linked in or check her out @keystocourage on Instagram and online at www.keystocourage.com

Ep 76: Culturize Your School (With Jimmy Casas)

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https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/kindsight-101/id1412489005?mt=2

Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a the kind of educational leader that nurtures excellence while building a powerful sense of community?

I’ve got another gem for you today…the one and only Jimmy Casas!

In our wide-ranging conversation, we explore:
* the biggest challenge in education,
* how to become a leader regardless of your title,
* how to delegate effectively,
* how to reach tough-to-teach kids without lowering expectations,
* the power of second chances, one of his top anxieties as a school leader,
* and the magic of establishing student-centred school culture.

Jimmy Casas is the best-selling author of Culturize and Stop Right Now, a speaker, and leadership coach, and currently serves as an adjunct professor at Drake University in Educational Leadership. He was an award-winning principal who served for twenty-two years as a school leader and is now consulting with and coaching educators, principals, and superintendents across the us.

You can find him and more about his books on social media at casasjimmy or online at jimmycasas.com

Throughout the book Culturize, Jimmy refers to his 4-point-core-values that have guided his practice as a leader and we touch on many of these throughout the interview:
1. Be a Champion for Kids– 3 rs’ …relationship, relationship, relationship! It turns out that most kids don’t succeed because a lack in these following three areas: confidence capability, and connection.
2. Expect Excellence– Choose empathy vs. sympathy and through effective scaffolding, hold the people you serve and your stakeholders to a high standard.
3. Carry the Banner– Be positive about your school. Branding happens…you can either control the message or let someone else do it. Social media is here to stay, so it makes sense to learn how to harness it.
4. Be a Merchant of Hope -Give people chances, make your mistakes right, and believe in people.

In culturize, Jimmy asks leaders to reflect on their practice using the following questions:
-Do your words inspire success or shame?
-Do you acknowledge the needs of others?
-Do you dismiss the gifts of others?

Hope you enjoy the episode. Please share with people you think would benefit from the message.

Ep. 75 Teach Like a Pirate (With Dave Burgess)

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Have you ever wanted to know the secret to truly achieving success?

How to create rapport in less than one minute?

What about rethinking your personal brand-everyone has one (you can either be intentional about it or let someone else create it for you)?

What about how to guard against the destructive nature of perfectionism?

This episode with New York Times Bestselling author, speaker, and publisher Dave Burgess is a total game-changer because in our 40 minute conversation, he dropped so much knowledge that I took two pages of notes and I had to listen back to the recording just to squeeze it all out!

Get ready to be inspired! #TLAP #smallactbigimpact #kindsight101

https://www.daveburgessconsulting.com
@burgessdave (twitter)
@dbc_inc (instagram)