Is there a different way?

In the UK we are experiencing a lot of news traffic about the lack of HGV drivers and the knock on impact of petrol shortages, Christmas goods not making the shelves etc. We can look at the blame game or we can focus on what we can learn to do differently to really move forward.

For so long there has been adulation for ‘celebrity’. With the growth of social media, there has been a new career title ‘influencer’.

The global pandemic has shone the spotlight on the careers we really need, should value and respect all of the time, yet many don’t – HGV drivers, social care workers, delivery drivers, auxiliary specialists in NHS – the list goes on.

There is an old saying which seems apt here “keep doing what you’ve been doing, keep getting the same results”.

I just wonder if now is the time to do things differently. Instead of trapping people in the hamster wheel of benefits and state support, why not invest in specific training to give unemployed people real skills to move into careers where they can support themselves, their families and pay taxes to support those vulnerable people coming after them?

If we take HGV training. It costs over £4K to train as a Heavy Good Vehicle driver – and rightly so. HGVs are weapons of mass destruction in the wrong circumstances so drivers must be robustly trained. This initial cost will be repaid several times other by each individual leaving benefits for good – not to mention their mind health will increase.

Of course, training is one part of the issue. Wages need to reflect the responsibility essential services like this carry which means either lower profits for shareholders or higher costs for consumers.

The same applies to social care. One thing seems to be forgotten in the talk about pay and conditions in this highly under rated sector. That is despite the growth of AI in many sectors, it won’t replace the need for humans to be trained well and WANT to work in social care looking after the most vulnerable of our society. Many seem to forget those of us luckily enough to have a healthy adulthood will likely need social care of some sort in our twilight years.

What kind of care would you want? Someone exhausted holding down multiple jobs to make ends meet or someone who has a passion to work in social care? If it’s the latter, don’t they deserve a wage commensurate with the nurture they give?

There seems to be a shadow over humanity at the moment where the wrong ‘careers’ are feted and respected. Is now the time to look at our priorities?

Do we have the will to examine and question our behaviours and their impact on others?

Thanks to Netflix, I watched this brilliant film over the weekend. I was struck by many things. Yes, it had all the emotions – happy, sad, courage, loyalty, generational parallel lives, hope, adversity, ignorance, acceptance, bullying and likely many more. Overall, it left a feeling of hope, that’s it’s ok to be your authentic self and life can be fun if we drop the judgements we give others – without even speaking with them.

I originally wrote this for my LinkedIn in page. Why? because the film is a place of work comprising actors, camera crew, runners etc as is the school central to the film’s theme. Without the Emotional Intelligence to accept all work colleagues – direct reports, peers, line management, clients, supply chain etc in all sectors, as well as recognise and understand how our emotions, thoughts and behaviours impact others, businesses and their people will never thrive.

As the credits to the film rolled, we see the ‘real’ Jamie Campbell and his mum Margaret from County Durham who the film was based on. A three part documentary in 2011 featuring Jamie and his mum’s fight for him to be allowed to wear a dress to his secondary school prom.

For me, the most poignant feeling I got from the film was how little has changed. Ten years since the documentary on Jamie’s fight to be authentic yet we don’t seem any further forward. In the film, Jamie’s guide to becoming a drag queen is Hugo played by the brilliant Richard E Grant. Snapshots of Hugo’s life as a drag queen during the explosion of AIDS, had parallels with Jamie’s fight and illuminated the lack of acceptance today.

With training in how our behaviours impact ourselves and those around us, change is possible – but only if we want it.

Final thoughts – the film ended with a real shift in change of attitudes by many. I wonder how much more businesses would grow if they looked at the behaviours and impact of all within…..

#London

There’s something about London. The vibe is completely different and unique to anywhere else for me.

When out of the City, I don’t appreciate how lucky I am to have the flexibility of working in such a diverse, creative environment.

Of course, some might say ‘that’s rose coloured glasses’ but isn’t everything about the way we look at it?

Walking towards the offices today, I noticed the melting pot of diverse buildings, intricately carved ornate old buildings – still standing 100+ years after being built – without power tools! – standing proudly amongst the glass array of newer office structures built with the climate in mind.

IThe diversity of the people who have walked these streets over past generations and those who will in the generations ahead hit me. What would they make of the way we live now? The lessons #Covid have taught us, or not?

The overwhelming thought I was left with was how brilliant us humans can be. Of course I won’t dwell on the disrespectful few on the train into London this morning who just had to be first off!

I’ll focus on the view instead! The atmospheric Tower Bridge with the glass structure of City Hall in contrast.

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing – focus on the positive.

Happy Tuesday!

Employers – seek new talent a better way…

With a seven year track record of success, Growing Talent has nurtured hundreds of unemployed people into permanent jobs.

Employment is the core tool for social mobility. Education enhances the journey and outcome.

Growing Talent works with unemployed people from all backgrounds who have a hunger to work but not the confidence and self-empowerment to secure work in the traditional way.

CVs, job descriptions, formal interviews are not allowed on Growing Talent. Instead employers select via informal events based on their vision of an individual’s potential to fit with their role.

Confidence, self-empowerment start to flourish on the combined orientation and holistic week when workshops, projects and presentations are focused on communication, conflict management, team work, solution finder, basic financial management, nutrition on a budget, art, wellbeing accredited mental health and wellbeing training.

Commaraderie naturally spreads building strong network connections before empowered, confident people go on site for a period of in role training with their employer and team. An audit trail enables self evaluation and progression.

This process enables both parties to evaluate each other, confidentially seeing the potential in each. On completion, each is confident the match is right.

Flexible and adaptable, Growing Talent can run virtually as well as in-person. Diverse roles filled include reception, welcome hosts, hospitality, administration, recruitment, document management, reprographics, junior HR and accountancy roles amongst others.

Cost to employers is zero. What’s not to like?

If you have a permanent vacancy you are looking to fill, why not consider Growing Talent?

Talking toolkits…

Most of us have a toolkit at home for fixing loose screws, hanging pictures, fixing leaks with an array of tools appropriate for each job.

Those car owners amongst us will also have a car maintenance toolkit – spare bulbs, cleaning materials, screen wash etc.

But how many of us have a wellbeing toolkit for looking after ourselves?

Why do we think looking after ourselves is a luxury/selfish?

If we don’t look after ourselves, how can we support work colleagues, family, friends, community groups etc?

So, if you haven’t got a Wellbeing Toolkit, consider starting one and using it regularly every day. Short windows of 10minutes or so focusing on us builds resilience.

Keeping to the same times each day to practice our self-care will build an automatic habit after three weeks.

We will be stronger in mind and body.

Why not check this video out and consider what you would put in/add to your Wellbeing Toolkit…

Pressure on?

Work, family, friends, community, Government, politics, world events – there are multiple, never ending sources of pressure, which if we are not careful to recognise, face and deal with, can turn into a much worse situation for us, our family and friends.

The stress investigation bucket is a tool I’ve been teaching for many years. It remains as effective today as it was back then.

Watch the film to find out more…….

….. and let me know what you think!