Joy at Work(er) Blog

It may be a company ending mistake to “Go Back” to the office

Written by Ed Cook

The increasing frequency of calls to “go back” to the office is not surprising.  The past year-and-a-half has been anywhere from difficult to deadly for nearly everyone on the planet.  Who wouldn’t want to roll back the clock?  Sure, we had worries back then, but, for most of the world, it was not a trade-off between your livelihood and your life.  Now, with increasing vaccination rates (although there are important concerns about new variants and resurgent infection rates), it is possible to contemplate a return to normalcy.  So, of course, talk about going back to the office has been increasing in the last couple of months and will only increase through the summer and early fall.  But before pulling the trigger on the announcement that everyone in your organization should “go back” to the office consider the impact of the Great Resignation. 

The Great Resignation

Texas A&M Associate...

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Disagreement Might Actually Be Engagement or Even Progress

Written by Roxanne Brown

Instead of feeling defensive and beat up by a conversation at work that’s filled with debate, maybe you should feel excited!

Sometimes what looks or sounds like disagreement is actually a sign that people are trying to engage with your idea.

When people ask “why?” questions, they’re telling you they need to be convinced.

When people ask “how?” questions, it means they’re at least a little convinced, if not completely convinced, and have moved on to imagining how to implement your idea.

When people ask “what about?” questions, it means they’re pretty convinced, even hopeful you’re right, but have a concern you need to address to help them see what you see.

If they agree to try to apply your idea to something low risk and smallish, then you’ve got a chance to create an ally! The goal is to stay open and listen to what people are telling you they need.

Often what looks like resistance to...

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How would describe the best team you've ever led or been part of?

team engagement Oct 15, 2020

Written by Roxanne Brown

When we ask people to describe the best team they’ve ever led or been part of, they usually say things like:

• We had each other’s back
• We had a hard goal to overcome and we were clear on the destination
• It was hard but we all focused
• People helped each other
• We laughed and did silly things to keep ourselves going
• We debated and tried things
• We took risks and sometimes we failed but we mostly had confidence that we could recover

It’s remarkably consistent!

When people are preoccupied with self-protecting and surviving at work they’re not focused on their work and the contribution they were hired to make so that the company achieves its purpose. Joy at work is about cultivating what supports people to thrive the most at work, together and individually, through good times and hard times. Joy at Work is about a way of being so the focus can be on the work itself.

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Team Engagement

team engagement Sep 14, 2018
Written by Ed Cook
The last three months can be a pivotal time of year. Vacations are finished. The press of work and the hustle for families have returned. It’s easy to get lost in what is right in front of you instead of concentrating on your end-of-year goals. Don’t let that happen. Engaged teams emerge or vanish in opportunities like this. 

Team Engagement is the pinnacle of leadership. It’s the end result of a process that guides each person to their place on the team so that they can find their personal fulfillment in the team’s success. This makes Team Engagement a completely different beast than Team Building. 

Team Building is discovering more about the members of your team; what they enjoy, their creativity, or their competitiveness. It comes through playing bubble soccer, and attending wine and cheese pairings, or even a team lunch.  And, while Team Building is valuable, it is not Team Engagement. Done well Team Building can create...
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