I conducted a virtual workshop this past fall on creating a more positive workplace. The insights of the thoughtful and engaged participants were so phenomenal that I have been sharing highlights from the program through a series of blogs. There was one detailing what contributes to an ideal workplace, and another on building connections. We then advanced to handling disagreements, discussing some helpful phrases to use in conversations, how to respond appropriately to difficult situations, and how to reduce conflict before it happens.
As part of the workshop, participants were given a homework exercise that I like to use in various programs and for my coaching clients. I asked them to think of a few work-related things for which they are grateful. I welcomed their submissions, and when shared with the whole class, it reminded everyone to stop and notice what is going right. Below are some of their responses:
- Knowing that I have helped someone during very stressful times.
- Friendly, happy faces to say good morning to.
- Really good open communication during this time, so no one feels out of the loop.
- I love the atmosphere and welcoming environment that my coworkers and I have created.
- That I have autonomy in planning my day and have freedom to adjust to work on higher priorities when necessary.
- The availability of the latest technology and equipment to do our jobs (at work and at home).
- Great IT Team that is patient and willing to train – especially appreciated NOW.
- Working in an environment that values work ethic and accountability.
- Everyone being very helpful and kind.
- Blue skies and sunshine!
What is going right in your workplace today?
“How were your holidays?” I asked one of my coaching clients, Michael. “Amazing!” he said. I was shocked. Was he living in the same world I was in? I queried him further.
“Sure,” he acknowledged. “There’s Covid, and money issues, but it’s all about managing expectations,” he continued.
Michael said that his family confronted the reality that this year would be different, and then they adjusted their expectations. They decided to focus on things that would make the holiday special with just the three of them.
Then Michael turned to talking about work and all that was positive in his work life. Those were his Covid silver linings.
Michael made me think about my work-related Covid silver linings. Here are some of mine as we start 2021:
- I have had meaningful work every single day since the beginning of the pandemic. This is significant in the life of a consultant.
- Through more one-on-one meetings, I have been able to get to know many of my clients at a much deeper level. We have had more time together and we are less rushed. Many, actually most, have started more positive and productive behaviors and habits.
- On the Concordia team, our colleague Mary has always been remote. Before March we worked in the Concordia offices, thus Mary was on the fringe. Now that all of us are remote, Mary has been able to contribute much more and we love and benefit from her input.
- I have used all this home office time to give my work environment a face lift. Translation: I sorted and threw out a lot of old material.
- I continue to receive new referrals and I have three new clients.
- While I could continue for pages on my many silver linings, there are two that are tied for best. One is that I can conduct high-level programs while wearing slippers and the other is that you are still reading my newsletters and thus still a part of my life. I appreciate you.
Let me know what your silver linings are. I enjoy hearing from you!