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Monday, October 14, 2013

Webinar (First of its Series) on 19th October @ 11 am


At, it gives us great pleasure in inviting you to join the Webinar (first of its series), to be held on the 19th of October at 11.00 am. The details are as follows :

Topic : The 21st century trainer
Training in the 21st century is interesting, exciting and challenging. It is no longer about standing and delivering, but facilitating and mentoring, and using technology effectively. It is about understanding principles of adult learning, knowing about instructional design, creating blended training programs to meet the demands and performance needs of the 21st century learner.
This webinar touches upon the skills that every trainer requires in order to be effective in the 21st century. It covers aspects of adult learning and instructional design that will help trainers to design and conduct trainings. Strategies to train in blended and online learning environments would be the focus of this webinar.
This webinar will help you to be aware of:
  • Skills required of 21st century trainers
  • Characteristics of 21st century learners
  • Andragogy and Experiential learning
  • Instructional Design principles and models – like problem based learning, scaffolding, first principles of instruction and the related model
Individuals new to training, experienced trainers, HR, Learning and Development Professionals responsible for employee training will benefit from this session.

Sucheta Phadke is a Consultant Learning Design Specialist. She has extensive experience in designing learning training programs for K12, teacher development, adult learning and vocational education. Solutions Design, conceptualization and strategy for delivery of learning solutions with an integrated approach using technology is her passion. Sucheta has lead large Content Development teams, Corporate Strategy and Communication and Global Learning and Development in organisations like IL&FS Education and CORE Education. She has trained resource teams of Government Education departments, Production staff at DECU, SAC-ISRO, trainers of hearing impaired children, educators under the Refresher training programme organised by UGC academic staff college, University of Mumbai, and is a member of the Board of Studies of SNDT Women’s University, Department of Educational Technology.
We would request you to give us a confirmation on your attendance so as to make help us arrange for the administration.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

5 Management Practices that can Improve Employee Productivity - Victor Lipman

All companies want to improve employee productivity, but how often do they examine their own management practices as a means of attaining it?  Studies consistently show that a disturbingly high number of non-management employees are disengaged, not working at full productive capacity.  Following are 5 practical suggestions – steps management can take to improve productivity by putting employees in a more productive mindset.

Provide meaningful feedback in a constructive manner on a regular basis.   Feedback is a foundation management skill; the ability to provide regular, helpful feedback to employees in a manner that encourages, not discourages, is a cornerstone of effective management.  That’s not to say feedback is always positive – that wouldn't be management at all – but that the communication is done thoughtfully… whether the occasion is encouragement for a job well done, or that course correction is needed.

Respect employees as individuals, in addition to the job they do.  Respect can be a simple but powerful motivator, just as its unpleasant twin, lack of respect, has the opposite effect.  When employees feel genuinely respected (always assuming it’s warranted), they’re much more likely “to go the extra mile” to help a company succeed.

Be sure management at all levels of an organization receives adequate training. There’s a tendency for companies to invest heavily in “leadership training” while focusing far less on supervisors and middle managers.  I can readily speak from experience on this one, having received considerably more training and development opportunities in the latter stages of my career than in the early formative stages, when I most needed it.

Provide support for employees when it’s genuinely needed.  Valued support can take many forms: equipment when existing is outdated or inefficient; emotional support in the face of (occasionally) unfair criticism; flexible support for a reasonable level of work-life balance.   Management support in times of need won’t be forgotten; it builds employee goodwill and loyalty.

Ensure senior leadership models behavior that makes the rank-and-file proud to be part of the team.  Nothing demoralizes employees more quickly than seeing senior leaders act in a way they don’t respect, and few things energize employees more than a senior team they admire.  Leaders are always being watched and judged; employees have keen eyes (and are keen data sharers!).  When leadership is “walking the talk,” it will be quickly noted – but so will “talking the walk” without actually walking it.
To help boost productivity, employee engagement matters.  Ultimately, most employees would much rather be part of a team they’re committed to, not just a member of an organization. 

Such management – balancing appropriate levels of results-orientation with understanding of employee needs – is neither easy nor unattainable.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Success Comes After Trials!!

This parable is told of a farmer who owned an old mule. The mule fell into the farmer’s well. The farmer heard the mule praying or whatever mules do when they fall into wells. After carefully assessing the situation, the farmer sympathized with the mule, but decided that neither the mule nor the well was worth the trouble of saving. Instead, he called his neighbors together, told them what had happened, and enlisted them to help haul dirt to bury the old mule in the well and put him out of his misery.
Initially the old mule was hysterical! But as the farmer and his neighbors continued shoveling and the dirt hit his back, a thought struck him. It suddenly dawned on him that every time a shovel load of dirt landed on his back, HE WOULD SHAKE IT OFF AND STEP UP!
This he did, blow after blow. “Shake it off and step up…shake it off and step up…shake it off and step up!” He repeated to encourage himself. No matter how painful the blows, or how distressing the situation seemed, the old mule fought panic and just kept right on SHAKING IT OFF AND STEPPING UP!
It wasn’t long before the old mule, battered and exhausted, stepped triumphantly over the wall of that well! What seemed like it would bury him actually helped him . . . all because of the manner in which he handled his adversity.

We would face similar such situations in our personal lives, professional lives, etc. what matters is to not give up but continue having the Hope that there is something good in store ahead.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

7 Tips for Middle - Management Success

Middle management is perhaps the toughest place to work in the corporate world. Blame comes from both directions: Subordinates blame you when they are pushed too hard, and superiors blame you for not pushing hard enough.
It can be maddening at times, but quite rewarding at others. The trick, of course, is learning to survive the former in order to fully appreciate the latter. This is the main difference between a good middle manager and a great one.
Here are seven tips that can help you become a great middle manager:
1. Say "Thank you" when deserved, and mean it. Remember, your team has the ability to make you look good or bad. Keep them motivated by recognizing a job well done. Because it's such a simple gesture, it's easy to forget the power this endearing term wields.
2. Keep the lines of communication open. This does not mean acting like everyone's den mother. But you should be as approachable as professionally possible or risk being left in the dark when things go south for your team. Since it's impossible to be everywhere at once, your staff should know that they can come to you before an issue becomes a major problem. You are the person they depend on for guidance. Don't slam the door when they seek your help.
3. Accept responsibility for those who report to you. When you refer to one of your staff members (or worse, your entire team) in a derogatory manner when speaking with your superiors, it casts your leadership abilities in a bad light. After all, the competency of those who report to you is a direct reflection of your management qualities.
4. Never ask a staff member to do something you aren't willing to do yourself. True respect can only be earned when management shows a willingness to come out from behind the desk and get their hands dirty.
5. Show you are a capable conflict manager. Acquire special training in crisis management, negotiation, or other conflict-resolution methods, if needed. You will inevitably moderate disagreements among team members. And if you're unprepared, you may behave as an ironfisted dictator. Or worse, you might show favoritism by siding with your pet employee's point of view; both are signs of an undeveloped leader. By being well-prepared and using facilitated discussion, coaching, and negotiating strategies, you can demonstrate leadership prowess to resolve differences.
6. Proactively lift staff morale. In today's tough work environment, morale is often diminished. Employees desire purpose and accomplishment, and they look to you for this inspiration. Through one-on-one interactions and by creating a positive culture, you can illuminate how individual employees' day-to-day tasks matter to the department or company at large. And you can personally applaud their accomplishments. You can delegate morale-building efforts to individuals as well, encouraging them to take responsibility for positive interactions with their teammates. By cultivating a positive culture among your team, you can stand out among your management peers whose teams may not be receiving the same morale-elevating attention.
7. Always be on the lookout for your replacement. If you are hoping to advance beyond your current position, this may be your best way up the ladder. Those above you may want to bring you along, but they may be concerned about how to replace you. Make their job easier and your climb more attainable by having a well-groomed staff member lined up and ready to step in when the call comes down.

You have worked hard to get to where you are. Proving to your staff, your bosses, and yourself that you deserve to be there requires a concerted effort on your part every day. The middle-management position truly is the axle on which the wheels of success turn.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Bookmytrainers wishes all Trainers / Teachers in India a very Happy Teachers day.

Your role as a Trainer / Teacher is even more important than you might imagine. You have the power to help people become winners. - - Bookmytrainers wishes all Trainers / Teachers in India a very Happy Teachers day.

The Shoe Story - Positive and Negative Thinking

You will perhaps have heard this very old story illustrating the difference between positive thinking and negative thinking:
Many years ago two salesmen were sent by a British shoe manufacturer to Africa to investigate and report back on market potential.
The first salesman reported back, "There is no potential here - nobody wears shoes."
The second salesman reported back, "There is massive potential here - nobody wears shoes."

This simple short story provides one of the best examples of how a single situation may be viewed in two quite different ways - negatively or positively.
We could explain this also in terms of seeing a situation's problems and disadvantages, instead of its opportunities and benefits.
When telling this story its impact is increased by using exactly the same form of words (e.g., "nobody wears shoes") in each salesman's report. This emphasises that two quite different interpretations are made of a single situation.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

How to be a Good Manager

An extract from How to be a Good Manager by Neil Harris
When you first get to be a manager it can be daunting. You move from being one of the team to the leader and suddenly the buck stops with you. Numerous books have been written and courses presented on how to do it well but most managers eventually develop their own style. When you see football managers on TV, some are dressed in kit, trying to be one of the team; others are in suits keeping a certain distance from their staff.
Whatever your style you have to establish your relationships. If these are built on mutual respect that will be a significant advantage for the development of your team. Knowing the strong and not so strong qualities of each person in your team in terms of personality, skills and knowledge allows you to play to their strengths and overcome weaknesses.
Dealing with now
The first essential part of a manager's role is to ensure that what should be done now is done effectively and efficiently within the constraints of budget and time. Dealing with the present can be stressful, especially when there are staff shortages, a lack of facilities, tight budgets and an excessive demand for the service or product that is to be provided. Training people to be multi-tasking can reduce the problems caused when a member of your team is absent. However, sooner or later you will need alternatives--a plan B, for example. Good negotiating skills and the ability to persuade more senior managers to provide the resources you require are a valuable asset. Always develop good working relationships with anyone who can assist your cause.
In addition to dealing with current problems it is essential to plan for the future. An ability to see the big picture; have a vision of where current thinking is moving to and how this will affect what you and your staff will do in one, two, five years time is important. ‘To do' lists help you to remember everything that needs to be addressed. Wall calendars that show key dates in a year help managers to see bottle necks and difficulties before they arise. Gant charts can be a useful tool in project planning, especially in helping to decide the sequence in which tasks must be completed.
Motivating your team
Different people are motivated in different ways. Some like to be stretched and to increase their talents, others want their role to be safe and secure. A few may wish to develop novel ideas to change things dramatically, while others prefer to implement incremental improvements. Treating each person as an individual and showing some concerns, not only about their development but also with other issues they may reveal confidentially about their lives, is a good motivator. Some managers encourage social events which oil the wheels of their team and get people to work together more effectively. It is wise to give praise for achievement, and bad management to take all the praise yourself while continually blaming others for lack of progress.
While increases in salary, promotions and training go some way to motivating people their effects are generally short lived. A lack of them, however, will have a negative effect on morale.
Having favourites, not being inclusive and making some feel peripheral to your team usually leads to negative behaviours.
Good managers are good communicators. We've all heard about mushroom managers who keep their team in the dark but people don't respond to that kind of leadership. Meeting the team regularly on a one-to-one and team meeting basis, and ensuring that everyone knows their role and what is expected on them will improve the performance of your team. If everyone has a job description which is flexible enough to allow you to deal with unusual situations as they arise, this can be a valuable tool. Rigid conformity to strictly applied rules can eventually be a barrier to progress.
Listening carefully to what your team tell you not only avoids pitfalls but also engenders team spirit. Sending e-mails to all the team makes people feel included. Communicating with only one or a few members of the team leads to jealousy and disaffection. Hierarchical management systems suffer from messages passed down the line that change by the time they reach some recipients from what they were when they began their journey.
Unambiguous written communication and minutes of meetings is a useful tool to ensure that everyone knows what has been agreed. It decreases the scope for argument and dissent. Verbal communication can often be misinterpreted or conveniently forgotten.
Once you know the strengths of your team you can decide which members will perform best in different roles. Then you can delegate responsibilities. When people accept ownership of specific responsibilities it is best if they can be allowed the freedom to get on with their task in their own way. The manager's role is to set timescales, budgets and deadlines, provide any facilities that are needed, and then offer support when required and monitor progress.
SMART is a useful yardstick when managers are delegating responsibilities. They should be:
  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable and agreed
  • Realistic and relevant
  • Time framed
It is important to monitor progress and valuable to have a regular frank appraisal of people's progress.
  • What has been achieved?
  • What could have been done better?
  • What training is required?
  • What do team members plan to achieve in the coming months?
If as a manager you are dissatisfied with something it is usually best to get it off your chest. Allowing problems to fester often gives them the opportunity to grow. Yet, if you know that a problem will disappear if left, doing nothing can sometimes the best strategy.
Being a manager is not always comfortable. You cannot always be popular. It is good to look for win- win situations but impossible to please everyone all of the time. Hard decisions frequently have to be made and it is often helpful to talk through your disagreements and those between members of your staff. Being surrounded by ‘Yes men' is not the best way to make progress. Those who disagree may sometimes generate better ideas.