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The current moment is defined by an economic situation where many jobs have been lost and the looming threat of many more to come.  In many companies, small and big, people are constantly humbled by the reality of how dispensable they really are.   

Notwithstanding this, the reality is that the most important survival strategy for organisations involves the realisation that people are our greatest asset and that to effectively capitalise on that asset, it would require a leadership strategy to effectively harness that.  That means creating purposeful teams through the employment of emotional intelligence. 


Survival Skills for Managers – More than Intellect and Streetsmarts!

Less than 60% of managers had any training in managing people .

There is no dispute that people are central to the success of our organisations.  These very people directly interface with customers – and therefore are core to our success as managers and leaders.  In recent times, the terrain of managing people has shifted considerably, and contemporary managers find themselves having to master this complex art.  After all, people are the most unpredictable and most complex resource within the organisation.  Our management style archives yields the manager as autocratic on the one end of the spectrum, and manager as democratic on the other end.  While many have criticized the autocratic style as too tough and domineering, the democratic manager has been accused of being too soft and easy.  While we tend to succumb to the temptation of knocking either style, what then is the right strategy or leadership style?


Transformational Leadership in Action
By Shamillah  Wilson

The essence of transformational leadership is that it completely changes the relationship between leaders and followers. (Owen et al, 2007)

I have to be honest and say that I have often looked at leadership styles in a take what you can fashion without really committing to any one particular style.  While I completely understood and consumed with avid interest theories on leadership, intuitively, my practice was based on the premise that there is no one “right” leadership approach. To a great extent we develop our own style according to our own beliefs, motivations, traits, skills, values, role models and heroes.  It is true that the nature and style of leadership required by a group or an organisation can change dependent on, for example, team and/or organisational needs and culture, the business environment and the maturity of the team or organisation (it’s stage of evolution and development).  An “adaptive” style of leadership is often more helpful than a “one style fits all” approach.  In reality, the world generally is a much more volatile and changing place where the emphasis is not on building up but on transforming – on radical change.  Thus a leadership style that is transformation and creates a radical change often seems to be the way to go.


Even if you feel inspired by your goal, there are times when achieving it feels like very hard work, and it’s at times like those when it’s very helpful to know what motivates you. If you want to change your life and your resolve stops and you’re not moving forward any longer, it is important to figure out what motivates you. Herewith 10 motivational tools:


Winter is here in full force and by now many of us have figured out just the right amount of layers needed to keep the cold at bay. In the workplace as well, the cold weather has also had many other effects. In fact, research has shown that the weather conditions do in fact impact on energy levels and moods of employees. According to a survey of more than 6,000 workers, 10 percent say they tend to be less productive on gloomy and rainy days, with 21 percent stating that weather negatively impacts their demeanor.  In addition to productivity, weather can impact employee moods and how they interact with their co-workers. Thirty-two percent of workers say they tend to have a happier disposition when it’s sunny or warm outside, while 12 percent tend to be sadder or angrier on gloomy days. Sound familiar?


How should employers motivate employees to do the work they have been hired to do?

Most employers desire employees that come ready made with a set of work ethics including punctuality, productivity (delivery), integrity and promoting company values and objectives. While some of these behaviours may already be present within the workplace, there is no guarantee that newcomers will exhibit the same attitudes and behaviours towards work.

While in the past, most companies complained about employees spending too much time on the phone, in the internet era, companies are also plagued by staff spending too much time surfing the net or occupying social networking sites such as facebook. This begs the question, what is the magic formula for instilling the desired work ethic in existing and prospective employees? Good news is, there are ways to address it. The bad news is - it requires dedicated efforts and initiatives to ensure that the results of these efforts are enduring.


  1. It is your attitude at the beginning of a task, more than anything else, that will determine your success of failure.
  2. It is your attitude towards life which will determine life’s attitude towards you. Despite many people’s belief to the contrary, life plays no favourites.
  3. You control your attitude. If you are negative, it is because you have decided to be negative, not because of the other people or circumstances.
  4. Act as if you have a good attitude. Remember actions trigger feelings just as feelings trigger actions.
  5. Before a person can achieve the kind of results he/she wants, he/she must first become that person. He/she must then think, walk, talk, act and conduct him/herself in all of his/her affairs, as would the person he/she wishes to become.
  6. Treat everybody as the most important person in the world.
  7. Attitudes are based on assumptions. In order to change attitudes, one must first change one’s assumptions.
  8. Develop the attitude that there are more reasons why you should succeed than reasons why you should fail.
  9. When you are faced with a problem, adopt the attitude that you can and will solve it.
  10. We become what we think about. Control your thoughts and you will control your life.
  11. Radiate the attitude of confidence of well being, of a person who knows where he/she is going. You will then find good things happening to you right away.
  12. In order to develop a good attitude, take charge first thing in the morning. Do you say “Good morning, Lord” or “Good Lord, morning?”


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