Mr Fixit!

With Growing Talent 17 in full swing, I’ve been making site visits all week.  One of the stand out ones was Delroy at Ballymore in Vauxhall.

 

Ballymore were taking part for the first time – so no pressure on Delroy to impress!  Joining the GM’s team at their Empress Gardens estate, Delroy is currently looking after the day-to-day maintenance of one building.  As a high end residential block, everything has to be pristine.

 

Located adjacent to the new American Embassy the area is developing quickly with new businesses and executive homes being built in the area.

 

Ballymore not only build residential and commercial properties, they maintain and run them as well.  Meaning customer care and relationship building are just as key to success as job ‘know how’.

 

Delroy is already being looked at for promotion as the estate is growing to nine buildings and he’s only been on site four weeks!  He’s absolutely loving it.

 

As his first job since 2010, no formal qualifications and only with the experience of running his own business, it was almost impossible for Delroy to secure the right role for him through the traditional route.  Through Growing Talent, he’s been able to showcase he is right for the role with Ballymore and changed management’s mind on the talent and potential amongst the ranks of the unemployed!  They confirmed they will recruit through Growing Talent again – great news, thanks to Delroy’s attitude and enthusiasm.

 

Delroy below in his own office complete with his own tropical fish tank for those mindful moments essential in any working day!

 

A strong career with Ballymore lies ahead for Delroy if he stays on course….. A great role model for others following him.

 

Stairway to opportunity?

Yesterday I finally got to see the impressive restoration at The Principal Hotel, London.  As a listed building with multiple original vintage features the launch date was put back a number of times.

 

I’d met Charlie & Amy from the HR team almost a year ago.  They came along to the Growing Talent Graduation 2017 and Amy attended one of our employer speed dating events to see if they could recruit through Growing Talent. Yesterday, Charlie confirmed they were indeed ready to join us on Growing Talent 18 which commences at the end of July.

 

Some of the stunning interiors any selected Growing Talent Associates will have the opportunity to work in….

 

The opulent lighting really fits the atmosphere at the hotel…..

 

Take a look at the ‘Hollywood’ showers…

 

 

How intricate is this mosaic outside the Palm Court afternoon tea area?

 

 

Who doesn’t love a four poster???

 

 

Great area for a nice soak after a long day….

 

 

Overlooking Russell Square itself, despite being in the heart of London with all the bustle, you literally feel a world away inside the hotel.  A great opportunity for the right Growing Talent Associates…..

London Chamber of Commerce – what to expect?

After four years of running my business delivering Growing Talent and Mental Health/Wellbeing programmes, I felt the time was right to increase my business awareness, network with like-minded organisations and ultimately grow Growing Talent to get even more people into work from diverse backgrounds.

 

Quite a big membership fee for a ‘one man band’ organisation but the events and knowledge LCC showcase they deliver on their website should make this cost-effective.

 

I guess you only get out what you put in!

 

My first networking event is on 6 June 2018 so not long to wait to see if the proof is in the pudding or not!

 

If there are any fellow members out there – I’d appreciate your top tips!

 

Update – 8.6.18 – for the first half hour I wondered what I was doing there!  There was no staff to direct, no kind of instruction manual – although I now understand there is an introduction session for new members which kicks in a couple of weeks joining!  So we were all in a large room with team/coffee etc and left to our own devices with colour coded badges – although not everyone had been given the key to the colour coding.  Equally, I was wrongly coded as a PR company! How many others were wrongly coded as well?  A couple of people I spoke with told me they were not renewing, others said they had grown strong client relationships.  I guess more than one event is needed to form a true opinion!

 

 

GDPR – Are you ready?

I found it surprisingly easy to register on the Information Commissioner Office’s website (ICO).  Usually these Government type websites are inflexible and it is nigh on impossible to use.

 

I decided to take the opportunity of GDPR on 28 May 2018 to think about how I get, store, use and destroy information I hold on those people I am trying to get into work or those clients I am working with to upskill their teams in mental health and well being.

 

What I noticed about the ICO’s website is you can type everything in about your data processes so it’s absolutely clear to all stakeholders what happens to their data, their rights and obligations.  Usually, it’s a ‘square peg and round hole’ scenario where you have to try to make generic drop down menus fit with your business.

 

In addition, I’ve introduced a full data information sheet which I issue to everyone and get their signature on a receipt index.

 

As an added measure, for clarity, I’ve introduced a digital recording system for all 1-2-1 meetings and an additional authorisation sheet is signed for this.

 

There is a lot of anticipation around GDPR.  When you look at it as protection for your business, it’s not nearly as onerous as it first looks.

 

1st Impressions…

Reading The Metro on the train this morning, there was a small piece on a group supporting offenders completing their sentence to be given a £1K package to include grooming costs, clothes etc to enable them to make a great 1st impression when meeting prospective employers.

 

A great idea.  But are 1st impressions still appropriate?

 

I’ve noticed more and more, in the corporate world especially, how dress code has changed to become almost non-existent.

 

It almost seems unacceptable now to give personal image guidance to increase someone’s chances of making a great 1st impression.

 

I hope the group trying to support the offenders are successful.  People leaving prison clearly have a number of hurdles to get over if they are going to make a successful transition.

 

Personally, I know that I perform more confidently if I’m dressed appropriately for the situation/event.

 

So just how important is ‘dress to impress’ ‘no 2nd chance at a 1st impression’ now?

 

What do you think?……….

Social Media – is ‘social’ the right word?

The rapid growth of users to the social media platforms has exploded in recent years.  It’s now acceptable for mobile phones to accompany us everywhere – and I mean everywhere!

 

I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve heard people clearly on their mobiles in toilet cubicles!  Hygenic? Courteous to the caller?  If it’s private, why not go outside the building?

 

How rude the shoppers refusing to hang up their call whilst trying to pack their shopping, pay the cashier whilst balancing their mobile under their chin!

 

Is this civilised communication?

 

Like a free coffee whilst shopping in some chains, it seems something we never thought we’d need, but very quickly some can’t do without!

 

Over recent  months I’ve attended various meetings/conferences where social media is clearly a double edged sword.  There was the mum who highlighted her daughter had been bullied 24/7 to the point of suicidal thoughts – even moving school didn’t arrest this evil pursuit.  Then there is the fledging business that after meeting with professionals and learning about Search Engine Optimisation, they increased their social media activity and saw their ranking on search engines increase rapidly.

 

Then of course, delivering training I notice how many people bring their phones with them.  Rudeness, presenteeism etc don’t seem to enter their heads, so without trying, they give a really bad impression of their commitment, enthusiasm etc.

 

What prompted this reflection?  Seeing on the news JD Weatherspoons has closed all 900 social media accounts as well as their 700,000 strong personal email database.  The reason they give is they don’t like the compulsive use of social media, the trolling and so on.

 

It will be interesting to see if other companies follow this action and if JD Weatherspoons re-activates their accounts in the future.

 

There is something in ‘compulsive’ use – how many people do you know who go out with family/friends and then spend the night texting? or the colleague who insists on taking their mobile in meetings?

 

Maybe we really should be conscious of our use of this technology…..

 

Simon Sinek the British American Motivator, Business Consultant and excellent public speaker has a number of films on YouTube.  Below is one on millennials which brilliantly illustrates the impact of the technology/social media……

 

What are your thoughts?  Do we need to be more disciplined in our use of technology/social media?

 

 

The social media feature photo is by Geralt.

How do you…..

Hire committed staff where you already know their personality, skills, fit with the team and your business as well as their future development progression?

Without it costing you any money?

Without it causing any risk to your business?

A source which has a four year track record?

Delivers real Social Mobility?

Has seen over 120 diverse people from all social backgrounds go into permanent jobs?

 

No – it’s not some kind of intrusive intelligence headhunting but….

 

Growing  Talent!

 

A new concept which enables employers to grow their own talent in situ and see all of the above before incurring the cost of hiring.  It makes sense for the participants too who may lack confidence to ‘sell’ themselves at interview.

 

If you are looking to add talent to your team, check out http://www.growing-talent.co.uk

Introduction of GDPR

Quite rightly the ability of marketing companies, charity fundraisers etc has been curbed with the introduction of the new General Data Protection Regulations – the EU initiative being introduced in May 2018.

 

We have read the tragic results of elderly people being hounded to suicide through incessant calls by charity fundraisers.  These charities had brought personal data from other sources without the individual’s knowledge.

 

I get that having legal terms and disclaimer on websites where the fact data can be sold is in place  (out of sight, out of mind maybe?) but how many people read the small print on websites?

 

No one should be able to sell someone else’s data on full stop.

 

But what about organisations who make no money but help people on their journey into work.  If they are prohibited by GDPR legislation from keeping details on file, how do they defend themselves if a malicious claim is made?  Without documented evidence there is no defence.

 

What’s the solutions?  Break the GDPR regulations or be open to abuse?

 

Im not at all sure……….

Is there a block with employers recognising the value of ideas from those working for them?

Most definitely! Is my conclusion….

 

On Growing Talent, everyone is technically unemployed and training in a vacant role which is their provisional job offer if they complete.  Very quickly, most who are enthused and see the value of this opportunity, will quickly see fresh ways of ‘upselling’ their ’employer’s’ goods/services.

 

From what I’ve seen, these ‘fresh eyes’ and therefore ideas are usually dismissed without investigation.  It seems to me employers see ‘unemployed’ rather than ‘human with ideas that could work’!  Why is that?

 

Like him or loathe him Gordon Ramsey’s Kitchen Nightmares include a segment of a new menu which me makes everyone taste and get to know.  This way, everyone can sell those dishes, give information to customers which in return will positively hit the bottom line.  It also ensures the individual is involved and enthused about the restaurant.

 

What an idea!  Ensure all staff know your values, products/services, reason for being……..

 

Maybe it’s time for some employers to think a different way?

 

I was reminded of this by Simon Sinek talking on YouTube about the Puerperal Fever deaths of the 1800s – known as childbed fever in which both mother and child died.  It was discovered the fever was caused by infection delivered by doctors.  At this point in time, medicine had graduated to investigation and understanding so autopsies were carried out.  Unfortunately, hand washing and tool sanitisation wasn’t!  Doctors would carry out autopsies in the morning then deliver babies in the afternoon without washing their hands.  However, pride that they were the cause meant no change happened for decades!  What a difference if looking at the idea of washing hands and giving it a try would have made.

 

For me there are similarities with employers who won’t listen to new ideas.  Keep doing the same thing.  Keep getting the same result.

 

International Women’s Day – what does it mean to you?

To me it’s a time to respect those women who everyday work hard to deliver real change to benefit others.  If can be someone locally running a drop in club for new mothers – who are naturally terrified of the responsibility  – to people like Helen Taylor Thompson – 93yrs young who was a spy in WWII, set up the first AIDS hospice in Europe and now works in using technology in the treatment of AIDS patients.

 

No matter how small their impact is on our lives, for me, it’s about telling them!

 

I am honoured to work with some amazing people on Growing Talent (www.growing-talent.co.uk).  Today I received an email from one of them who was on the programme over 2 years ago to thank me for my support.  I’m still buzzing!

 

Happy international women’s day!! Thanks for encouraging me to seek counselling and stay strong, it’s what got me through a lot and still keeps me going. Had to thank you once again in light of today as it’s what inspires me to stay strong so I can encourage other women one day.’

 

Why not use this auspicious day to tell those women who inspire you, about the impact they have had on you.  You’ll make their day and give solid meaning to #IWD2018!

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