Are you passionate about your work?

I’ve just read yet another article about finding your passion. It’s a tricky subject for me. For years, I thought I was missing out, constantly searching for that elusive something that might spark my passion. In the meantime, I just got on with the job in hand.

Perhaps it’s because I’m English, and I just don’t do passion. ‘Really interested’ is about as good as it gets, perhaps even ‘absorbed’ on occasions. What is it I’m missing, and does it really matter?

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A manager by any other name…

I came across yet another article this morning arguing the difference between management and leadership.  This one was called Ten Signs your Boss is a Manager — but not a Leader. It suggests that managers watch people to make sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to be doing, and continues:

‘The concept of traditional supervision is rooted in the fear that working people will misbehave or make mistakes if someone isn’t watching them to make sure they don’t.’

Hang on a minute. Weren’t we talking about management? Continue reading “A manager by any other name…”

When’s it my turn?

While talking to a colleague about conflict earlier this week, I had a vivid memory of a dilemma my mother once talked about. She was a very capable woman, working for the same company for over 40 years, rising from accounts clerk to Director while raising my brother and me as a single parent.

When she retired, she joined various local groups and enjoyed outings and the occasional holiday with her new friends. The problem she faced was that people always looked to her to organise things – after all, this was something she was very good at. Continue reading “When’s it my turn?”

How to be the person everyone wants on their team

One of my friends who’s an opera director was recently tagged in a post on Facebook with a link to an article listing 20 Ways To Be The Actor Everyone Wants to Work With. At first glance most of it seemed entirely theatre-related; with only a little imagination however, several items on the list could be translated into more general advice on how to be the sort of person that others really want to have on their team (and yes, that includes leading the team).

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7 ways to get unstuck

The poet Charles Bukowski said writing about a writer’s block is better than not writing at all”. So here I am, overcoming my struggle to write my blog by writing about struggling to write my blog – or perhaps about becoming unstuck in general.

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Deadlines: the ultimate inspiration?

I’m one of those people who needs a deadline; without one, I’d never get anything finished.

As a Myers-Briggs practitioner, I know it’s a personality thing, typical of someone with a Perceiving preference. We like to keep things open for as long as we can, exploring options until the last possible minute when we pull everything together in a flurry of activity.

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Time to get really angry

People who don’t really know me might be surprised at what a seething mass of anger boils beneath this hugely tolerant exterior. All sorts of things get me going, but most of the time I keep a lid on it and only those closest to me realise that not everything’s as calm as it seems. And then, just occasionally, I explode.

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Are you a resilient little Moss Piglet?

There seem to be quite a few TED talks available on the subject of resilience. This in itself is an interesting indication of what working life must be like for many people these days: if so many speakers dedicate time and effort discussing the ability to cope with extreme pressure and bounce back, it must surely be something people are interested (possibly desperate) to hear about.

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The workplace curmudgeon

I’ve recently been watching re-runs of the TV series House, in which Hugh Laurie plays a prescription drug-dependent, unconventional, misanthropic genius. I’m also been watching the latest series of Sherlock, in which Benedict Cumberbatch plays a drug-dependent, unconventional, misanthropic genius. The similarities are of course deliberate – they even share the address 221b Baker Street, although one’s in London and the other in Princeton, New Jersey.

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