The Challenge

To assist a corporate events team succeed in having their Sales Conference participants learn the content presented as well as have fun. A global sales team of 250 people from a high tech company came together for a 2.5-day sales conference in The Muskokas, Canada. In past conferences participants were presented with numerous seminar tracks related to their position, geography and client base. The focus of the seminars was product features, functions, applications, and marketing programs. Feedback left organizers unhappy with the amount of learning during the conference. Participants also complained about the jammed packed schedule without much time for fun or socializing. Conference budgets had been cut over the last several years.

 

The Client

ASCI was appointed by the VP of Events to help with their annual sales conference. An aggressive group of 250 high tech sales people attend an annual sales conference to receive updates on products and marketing programs. The sales people tend to sell in high stress environments to other high tech companies and are considered the key to the organization’s success.

Objectives Read the rest of this entry »

The Challenge

Three individuals from various leadership positions (Branch Manager, District VP, Commercial Branch Area Manager) within the Personal and Commercial division of a large Financial Institution required assistance to overcome challenges in inter-personal and communication style. All three individuals have been recognized as potential leaders in the organization and are in line for promotion if these issues can be resolved. The Bank’s traditional coaching process had yielded minimal results.

The Client

ASCI was appointed by the VP of Human Resources and Talent Management of the Personal and Commercial division of a large Financial Institution. Behavioral analysis (TAIS) of each individual revealed a consistent leadership profile that emphasized Analytical/Conceptual as the dominant attentional style combined with a very high need for Control, higher than average Expression of Criticism & Anger and a very high Response Style Influence.

Objectives

Each Coachee had unique manifestations of the behaviors that were creating issues with their teams and clients. Although the situations and symptoms were different, the objective of the sessions was consistent.

  1. Have the coachees accept that the challenges they are facing are a result of their behavioral preferences.
  2. Explore the behavioral issues highlighted by TAIS and tie them to situations and challenges.
  3. Develop awareness to recognize adverse behaviors and employ mechanisms to modify the behavior.

Strategies

Each coaching engagement started with a face-to-face meeting, where possible, so that the coach and coachee felt comfortable with each other. The relationship is built on trust and mutual respect. The session content included:  Read the rest of this entry »

Business Improvisation – Performance Under Pressure (download the pdf)

The Challenge

A group of 25 Sales and Marketing leaders want to ensure that they are at their best in front of clients, speaking opportunities and industry events. They are of diverse background, some coming from sales, product marketing and industry analysts. Poor handling of objections during the sales process, questions during presentations and thinking quickly under pressure have been issues that their traditional Sales Training has not been able to address effectively. The client also felt that the team would benefit from team building in the process enabling them to get to know each other better while having fun.

The Client

ASCI was appointed by the VP of Sales and Marketing of an Electronic Goods manufacturer to work with her team. The team consisted of Regional and District Sales leaders, Marketing Directors and several Corporate Account Executives. Behavioral analysis (TAIS) of the team revealed that the dominant attentional style was Analytical/Conceptual combined with a very high need for Control and a very low propensity to risk.

Objectives

The VP of Sales and Marketing wanted: Read the rest of this entry »

Are you right (creative) or left (logical) brained? The correct answer to the question is “both.”  Right brain/left brain has been a common, yet misleading, way to label people based on 60s split-brain research. Follow the link below to a video in which Iain McGilchrist, psychiatrist and writer, debunks this belief and reveals a clear picture of how the two sides of the brain really work.    The Divided Brain.

Click the brain to enjoy the video

 

by Lauren Davey

Organizations often look outside for top talent as a way to “raise the bar” or avert a talent crisis.  There is much being written today about talent shortages among organizations – it is real and prevalent.  Yet, what if we could help our organizations fight the war for talent by taking a more active role in our development?   Could that role reduce the talent shortage by creating opportunity for others and our selves already on the payroll?  After all, the workplace is filled with skilled employees who have accrued countless years of valuable experience.  First, however, a commitment to change is required to meet the new and growing demands of organizations for their leaders today.

Over the years we change our hairstyle, our clothes, the cars we drive, our home furnishings.  We spend time researching and evaluating items such as the latest Smartphone to determine whether we should upgrade our current hardware for the latest version– yet when it comes to an upgrade of our leadership capability, we tend not to invest much thought and even fewer resources. Though leadership may not evolve as quickly as Smartphone technology, the principle remains the same.  Upgrades eventually make previous versions of the same thing obsolete.  Read the rest of this entry »

by Cameron O. Anderson and Randy G.J. Sabourin

The rules for work are changing. We’re being judged by a new yardstick; not just by how smart we are, or by our training and expertise, but also by how well we handle each other and ourselves. –Daniel Goleman

Corporate leaders face a future where the performance of their organization will rely on the ability to adapt their behavioral styles to meet the needs of their direct reports. Getting the most from an individual or your team means first having a way to understand yourself while accepting responsibility for the success or more importantly, the failure of business relationships.  The interactions of people within a team or externally with clients or other stakeholders does not fall into the same classification as controlling manufacturing quality or forecasting enterprise resources. If we accept that everyone is unique (as we believe ourselves to be) how can we apply the same coaching advice, or sales training, or decision making processes to everyone the same way. It is tried daily, and fails daily.

While “rapid cognition” and intuition are important elements of management coaching in today’s rapid fire environments, relying on experiences and values-based techniques for problem solving, learning and discovery (aka heuristics) is only part of it.  A reliable, repeatable process for positively impacting the behaviors of staff includes a full self-understanding of the coach. A typical management leadership failure often sounds like “…everyone is great at their jobs but they can’t work together… there tends to be too much unhealthy conflict and politics”. Read the rest of this entry »

By Cameron O. Anderson

Investors and Advisors alike have come to accept the efficient market school theory that maintains that market activity is based on people making rational economic choices. But the reality is that people act on their emotions constantly and often unconsciously. We become overconfident or fearful, “irrationally exuberant” or regretful.  Our herd mentality often takes over while we perceive and frame our investing options in unusual ways.  But why? Neurofinance seeks to answer this question.

Neurofinance combines psychology, economics, and neuroscience, to study how people make investment decisions. The goals of neurofinance are to identify the psychological inputs that impact trading behavior and then connect these traits to trading success or failure. It also looks to develop the training methods to improve performance and lower risk.

There are certain behaviors that hold potential implications for investors. The following is an overview of common behaviors demonstrated by both investor and advisor:

  • Overconfidence and Hubris. Individuals generally assume they know more than they actually do. They also tend to remember previous financial decisions in ways that exaggerate their own foresight. This can lead to overly aggressive decisions and a reluctance to admit—and correct—mistakes. The “illusion of control” and “how great gains change the brain” are common themes explored in the field. Effective questioning techniques of investors and/or advisors help to uncover and correct this investment behavior. Read the rest of this entry »

by Marina Willats

Master Multi-Tasking

There was a time when being stuck in traffic was a source of great frustration. Now it is an opportunity – you can sip your latte while you make some calls, check your email on your blackberry, and listen to the latest headline news. Sound familiar. If so, you probably consider yourself a master multi-tasker. It’s a point of pride for many. Why do just two or three things at once when you can do four or five? In fact, isn’t that what digital devices are for – to lighten our load by allowing us to accomplish more in less time. Yet this is rarely how it plays out. Instead the ability to connect and communicate instantly has led to highly disruptive work environments and low productivity.

The Myth of Multi-tasking

It has been proven that no one can effectively do two things at once. Just try listening to two people on either side of you tell you a story. Read the rest of this entry »

The Challenge                                                                                        (download the pdf)

An established Executive Team of twelve including two new members was struggling to reach agreement on several major strategic initiatives.  The decision making process was being negatively affected by interpersonal communication styles and political agendas. Due to diverse interests and personalities, major strategic projects were being stalled. The situation was affecting the performance of the Executive Team, was poor role modeling for the rest of the organization and increased the costs associated with the stalled projects. The organization was engaged in several significant change projects and the inability of the Executive Team to “pull the trigger” would affect other projects and company confidence.

The Client

ASCI was appointed by the CEO of a large multi-national insurance company to work with the Executive Team. The team consisted of the CEO, CIO, CFO, Executive VPs from regional areas and market segments, Legal Consul, and the Chief Commercial Officer. Behavioral analysis (TAIS) of the team revealed that the dominant attentional style was Analytical/Conceptual combined with a relatively slow decision making preference and a very low propensity to risk. Read the rest of this entry »

by Randy Sabourin
Over the years both Cam and I have contributed our time and resources to several worthy charities. When we talk about Fairness as a team building attribute in our Team Dynamics Workshops, the subject of philanthropy often comes up. Research on why we volunteer our time to charities can be linked to our sense of fairness and desire to balance the scales. Others who are less fortunate, experiencing social injustice or suffering from a disease need our help. We feel better when we show compassion and help others. Matthieu Ricard has been dubbed the happiest man in the world. In his TED Talk Chade-Meng Tan from Google explains that Ricard’s happiness was measured with an fMRI and that it was the highest ever recorded. Ricard states that he was meditating on compassion at the time. Read the rest of this entry »

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