This weekend, I hosted a wedding at my home for my niece and her (now) husband. A marquee was erected and 135 guests enjoyed a wonderful ceremony and amazing food.       Unlike other weddings I have heard about, the bride was the furthest thing from a Bridezilla. She had spreadsheets with...

When it comes to actual behavioural change, I’m not convinced that running adhoc, one off workshops will cut it. However, this is still the default that most organisations offer when it comes to developing skills or changing behaviours. We want better feedback? Run a half day feedback...

You should be reading the topic of this blog with a somewhat whiney tone. It’s not unlike a conversation I had with a colleague last week. We were discussing cultural change and how I might be able to assist her organisation and after we discussed the possibilities we both agreed that yes,...

  The following an excerpt from my book, "Get Engaged:  How great trainers think, and what they do to get participants to stay, play, learn & grow".  Download the introduction and free chapter from my home pageBuy the full version of the book here.   Great trainers know that skepticism is...

Given that we spend so much of our work day in meetings, it seems wrong that we are not able to describe them in more glowing terms.  It seems people would rather poke themselves repeatedly in the eye with a sharp stick than go to them.   So if meetings are so AWFUL, why do we have SO MANY of...

This might sound a little obvious to you, but I’ve recently discovered the joys of hiring an expert. From personal stuff around the house, to professional stuff around building my own capability, or getting stuff done! We live in the country, and recently built a deck on our home, and then had...

Last week we delivered our 3 day Engaging Training  program to a fantastic group of 14 workplace trainers.  We enjoyed learning about everything from building the relationship with the group at the beginning to effective instructional design.   We had a heap of fun, and you can look at a...

I recently found myself a participant in a learning environment that was for a very practical skill. Handwriting. See my blog/article from last week. As someone who is usually at the front of the room creating learning environments, it was initially a pleasure, and then later quite painful (in a...

This week I took myself off for some learning for the sake of it. What I mean by that was, that I wasn’t sure what I would learn specifically or how I would specifically apply it but I wanted to be in a learning environment in a somewhat pure form. The course was on handwriting and whilst I can...

I had a conversation with a colleague today about how important it is to be able to use virtual tools to collaborate or be more efficient. His position (which I agree with) was that if you don't understand the mindset of a particular process, digitising it will be that much harder.   For...

They stand back and allow participants to do what they need to do in activities.   I have been a participant in training on many occasions and I remember times when the trainer would wander around the room to check if participants were doing the activities. I always hated this.   Training is...

As a trainer, facilitator or meeting leader, have you ever had a great day at the front of the room? Everything went perfectly? Audience engaged and participating? Content well received? All outcomes achieved? Was it a fun experience for all? You learned a thing or two yourself? If your answer...

Managing a virtual team can be challenging. Whilst it’s almost impossible to re-create the feeling of being in the same room, there are some great tools out there now that allow for what I’m referring to as “casual collaboration”.   Let me define this first: Casual collaboration – in the...

As a fan of social media and an active participant, I find myself frequently having to determine if what I am reading in articles, or in posts is true or fabricated.   This week I found what appeared to be a legitimate news source article that caught my attention, and raised my ire.  So, I...

In recent years, Simon Sinek’s book, “Start with Why” and the TED talk has had people buzzing about the need to start with the WHY.     For decades, anthropologists have known about the importance of starting with the WHY, as have school educational experts (like Bernice McCarthy).     When...

I was asked this question in a workshop last week.  And it took me a moment to consider.  Frankly, it’s not something that I think about in isolation, as I believe building relationships is the same whether they are virtual or not.   However, I do believe it may take a little longer as you are...

For a while now, I have been working with a virtual team.  At first I had a virtual team member in another country, and more recently I have added a team member located in another city of Australia.   We have a regular weekly team meeting, or Work In Progress (WIP) and it struck me today how...

I see a lot of articles about, and get a lot of requests for, ideas, tools, techniques to make virtual sessions more engaging.     Much of the time I come from a bit of a Ghandi position (“Be the change you wish to see in the world”)  by asking, "when you are a virtual participant, how engaged...

Last week, whilst running a new manager development program I had a participant ask, “What makes for a good 1:1 with a team member?  Is there a particular structure?”.   There was certainly no denying that having regular 1:1’s was the way to go, and the question was a very good one.     One...

Have you ever worked with someone who was moody? Or someone who was constantly whining about all the things that can, could and do go wrong?    I reckon they are exhausting to be around don't you?   And.....have you ever caught yourself having one of those days yourself?   When I was...

I have just finished writing my fourth book.  It will be published shortly, and it's all about helping HR professionals become the business partners their organisations need them to be.  But that's not what this post is about.   This post is about my reframing of what I used to think of as...

There’s a lot written about employee engagement, and a lot of money spent (invested?) by organisations with this in mind. A lot of the effort seems also to be around the organisation needing to do something to engage employees. I wonder what would happen if employees decided to show up...

If you google "virtual meetings" you get a bunch of articles and sites dedicated to saying how bad virtual is and how much better face to face is.   I don't think it's the medium, though. I think it's the meeting culture in an organisation that determines how ANY meeting goes. If you already...

There's a lot written by folks like me about why virtual is not always as effective as it could be.  Let's face it, we have all experienced bad meetings, virtual and physical so maybe it's less about the medium and more about designing effective meetings. Virtual can be extremely effective, and...

Shop

Buy Donna's Books

“One of the best trainers I have ever come across in my life.  Your training and materials not only helped me officially but also influenced my interpersonal skills in a positive...”
See more testimonials