Tuesday, 27 May 2003

Whistle while we work...

All last week I was on an intensive management training course - it taught me lots of techniques for thinking about my approach to my team: personality tests, what motivates me tests, my belief's cycle, team dynammics etc etc etc. All useful stuff but the hard bit is putting it into action - every word, tone, action, sentence has to be considered for what you are communicating in all ways - words, tone and body language. God being at work is going to be such hard work!

Half way through the week on our second outing at lunch to a restaurant (we were packed off together as a group - strangers trying to find something suitably unpersonal to talk about that isn't about being management trained - sometimes strained) and two of the chaps decided that basically the course could be summed up, albeit very negatively: that whatever you do, whatever doesn't go right (the team doesn't understand the task, someone behaves negatively or manipulatively or cynically) - it all boils down to the fact that its YOUR fault - you aren't communicating correctly, positively, adultly and YOU are responsible for changing your approach to get the other person to behave differently. So its another stick to beat ourselves with.

Back at work today for the first time in what seemed like ages I was thrilled to find only 7 voice messages on the phone (I hate the phone now that I have sole responsibility over one - it rings I HAVE to answer it because its my phone - I'm finding that the work phone is a torture implement - designed to ring just as I get to the most important and complicated part of a problem and am on the brink of cracking it thereby losing the entire train of thought), and only 18 email messages. But what messages...every one a misunderstood, poorly thought out answer to something that I was expecting to have been done already, arguments against decisions, misinterpretations, snidy responses.

And I wished I could be back to the beginning of last week - no phone, nice walk down the Kingsway towards Aldwych from Holborn, past the florist and fruit stall, along a pavement of stone slabs with huge plain trees overhead...instead of trapped in Finsbury Park on the 3rd floor of a building with one corner of an open plan office, MY phone and a set of cranky staff and a big stick to beat myself with because its all my fault...sigh.

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