Feeling inspired by Sukhvinder Pabial's workshop on Positive Psychology, I sat down to blog my "3 good things" from the past two day's worth of keynotes, breakouts and discussions at the CIPD Northern Area Partnership conference.
I quickly realised this was nigh-impossible. But, ever the growth mindset - I've gone with 6. Well....6.2 to be exact.
Ryan Cheyne's opening keynote set the tone perfectly. His message was clear - focus on the simple, core stuff, and do those things brilliantly. In the case of his work at Pets At Home, this translated to a simple equation:
Whether it's a handwritten thank you note, focussing reviews on conversations rather than huge forms, or focussing on what breeds loyalty (pun absolutely intended) - his Pets At Home story was full of impact.
I lost track of how many times this word was mentioned over the course of the conference. Not least following Clive Wilson's workshop on "Designing the Purposeful Organisation." The interesting thing about purpose is that its value is equally crucial, whether you're approaching things from a personal, team or organisational viewpoint. Professor David Clutterbuck shared a great question in his workshop to help clarify team purpose:
If we don't meet in the next year, will it make a difference?
I took a lot away from Ian Pettigrew's superb workshop "Building and sustaining personal resilience." One key theme was truth, and as Ian stated- "not all truth is created equal". A useful reflection of sitautions when speaking the truth, avoiding the truth, or speaking lies collide with either positive/negative intent.
This conference saw over 2000 tweets hit the hashtag #cipdnap15 - creating a reach of nearly 950,000 people (and counting*). Social is here to stay - we need to maximise the ways in which it can be used to help support the creation/promotion/longevity of amazing workplaces.
CIPD CEO Peter Cheese delivered a refreshing, challenging keynote on Day 2, where he suggested that there should be a "burning" of erroneous HR policies. Do we really need policies that tell grown-ups how to dress? Using VUCA to set the scene, Peter argued the case that there isn't a place for a 5-year strategy in today's workplace - we need to create the conditions where agility flourishes. Elsewhere, Jo North challenged the non-research-based "hierarchy of needs" framework, whilst Professor David Clutterbuck warned of relying too much on GROW model - suggesting it might stand-for "get rich on waffle".
Encouraging innovative in-crowds. Creating communities of curation. Wiring wellness into the workplace.
Perry Timms closed the conference with a typically high-energy, optimistic look at the future of work through tech. Although in my case he was of course preaching to the digitally-native choir....
Rather than being something to fear (millennium bug anyone?) - Perry reminded us tech is here to help, and we should do all we can to embrace what it can offer.
Above all of this, I discovered two other things this week.
A) David De Souza and I may in fact be long lost brothers.
B) My bow tie skills still need some help.
Once again, the NAP team have outdone themselves - providing two days of opportunities to reconnect with familiar faces, meet many like-minded peers, and reflect on our collective purpose as a development community - creating amazing workplaces.
Feel free to comment below if you want to share some of your 'good things'!
Looking forward to next year already.