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41% of training budgets wasted in 2013

Effective training can lead to significant benefits and bottom-line improvements for businesses. But our survey revealed that a significant proportion of training programmes in 2013 failed to deliver against their requirements. To make matters worse, over a quarter of companies surveyed were not formally measuring the results of their training at all!

It is therefore no surprise that many firms were reducing their training budgets by an average of 12% in 2013 [1] and possibly by even more in 2014.

But how do you get the most out of your training? Well, our research highlighted that it’s often a mixed approach that is most engaging, reinforced with clear goal-setting, homework and ongoing support from line managers.

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Body, Mind and Spirit…and Productivity

Time management training is sometimes approached in a purely cerebral way with extensive flow diagrams and theories discussed at length. We have however seen this type of business training fail again and again to translate into lasting change. Better time management courses like Getting Things Done also stress practical implementation in their training. We would go one step further and suggest that the whole person needs to be considered, not just technology and systems but also culture, emotions and the body. In this article Mark Walsh addresses some of these more unusual aspects of productivity. (Mark leads workshops for Think Productive, a partner of Inspire’s who specialise in this perspective).

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A Ninja’s “Productivity Rules of the Road”

Article by Graham Allcott, Productivity Ninja and CEO of Think Productive

In a previous post, I talked about my experiences of solitude whilst writing my book and the productivity benefits of REALLY eliminating distractions and reconnecting with being human and all our human foibles. I’ve come back from my trip with a renewed determination to be a productivity ninja, walking the talk, practising what I spend so much time preaching (!) and upping my game.

So I thought I’d share with you my new rules for life and work. Like most things that increase productivity, the changes I’ve made are not rocket science: they’re really common sense principles that are just not commonly applied.

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Stevies’ Three Personas

Ask my wife and she’ll claim I’m a big picture thinker and extraverted– she’ll point out how I love to entertain, how sociable I am, that I’m demonstrative (or over demonstrative at times!), how I love an audience, and how my spontaneity (against her order and planning) drives her mad. She’ll also see the bit in me that’s outcome focussed (claiming it’s a ‘man thing’) because I like to provide solutions to issues or problems when what she’s looking for is for me to listen, be empathetic and supportive.

However when five of our clients were asked during a recent Lumina qualification to describe my personality, or their perception of my personality (I wasn’t there at the time), they all agreed that I was predominantly a people focussed person, with lots of Green archetype in me. They saw me as collaborative, empathetic, supportive – in fact an all-round nice guy.

My Lumina Partners, Gavin and Stewart, who had posed the question, were giving each other curious looks, and in hysterics inside (as my wife would have been)! This is because they rarely see these qualities in me. They get the outcome focussed discipline driven Stevie. The one that keeps harking on about agendas and processes. The one that demands reliability. The one who needs to know where we are going before we set off.

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21st Century Human Persuasion

The new persuasion: no-sales selling, and why moving beats manipulation

Whatever our role in business, we sell. It may not be part of our job title, but we sell. We may not – in the short term – get paid for it, but we sell. We may not even think of it in those terms, but still… we sell. Every day we persuade others to part with resources: money, effort, attention or time. If we do not sell a product we instead sell our ideas, our skills and our attitudes.
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