Behavior Matters!

Secure Your Future by “Leading Human”

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Building a Positive Workplace that Deals Effectively with Today’s Stresses

Caroline slumps in her chair, stares out her kitchen window, and wonders how it came to this. She looks down at the e-mail from her boss and shakes her head thinking, “She doesn’t understand.”  

The kids are arguing in the background… something about whose turn it was to take out the dog. Looking around the kitchen, she notices that the dishes from last night’s dinner are still in the sink, unwashed. In fact, the whole house is a mess, clothes lying where the kids dropped them, the half-done puzzle pieces litter the table, dirt tracks from the dog across the floor, mail is strewn about the countertop, unopened. The only part of the house that is reasonably orderly, she realizes, is the part right behind her, the part that is seen in the background of her Zoom calls.

She frowns. 

Caroline looks back at the e-mail and reads it again, “Caroline, Hi! Can you give me a call this morning before 11:00? I just got the sales reports in and I need to talk to you about your numbers. ~ Ramona.”  

She sighs; her mind is racing, “I know my numbers are off this quarter, but damnit, things are chaotic right now. How can she expect me to keep up the same pace that we had before?”  Caroline’s heart is racing, and her stomach is twisted into knots. She hasn’t slept well for the past few months and wakes up wondering, “What happens if I lose this job? How will we make it?”   

She takes a deep breath and starts to reach for the phone but stops, and just stares blankly out the window, leaving the phone untouched on the table…    

Handling this new workplace and the stress it puts on your employees requires a new approach to leadership. It requires Leading Human™.

What does it mean to Lead Human?

Leading Human means leading with humility, self-awareness, and a desire for purposeful growth. We are in a time of unprecedented change and transition in business.  

Employees who feel happy and purposeful at work demonstrate higher productivity, increased motivation, and greater feelings of organizational alignment. In the past, we might have perceived the costs of a non-inclusive leader as negligible; in the wake of a global pandemic and unprecedented lifestyle impacts, we have seen firsthand the real difference thoughtful leadership makes, not just in the short term, but also for the reputation and performance of the company in the long term. 

Even during times of crisis, organizations need to be productive and motivated, or output will suffer. It is humans who develop and produce vaccines, who diagnose and treat diseases, who debug the software we rely on to communicate virtually. 

Leading Human helps leaders who manage teams understand how to generate the behaviors that lead to higher productivity, increased motivation, and loyalty. It brings the tools, knowledge, and skills necessary for you to implement a more human-centered workplace that can drive improved performance and employee satisfaction – all backed by the latest insights from behavioral science. 

Ok… so how do I lead Human?

Luckily, we created a playbook for that very purpose, we hope to empower you as a leader and enable you to channel your best, most authentic leadership —a key step in the new workplace environment to optimize your team’s well-being and success

The Leading Human Playbook is an 84-page comprehensive guide to building a positive workplace that deals effectively with today’s anxieties and stresses. The companion Leading Human Workbook takes the science-backed insights detailed within the playbook and allows today’s forward-thinking leaders and organizations to turn those insights into action.

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Grab your copy of the Leading Human Playbook and Workbook today!

Backed by leading experts in the fields of Behavioral Science and Behavioral Economics, Leading Human was created in response to the wholesale changes and disruptions we have all experienced this past year. This roadmap outlines the key steps organizations and leaders must take in order to come back to work successfully and compete in the new world.

Leading Human™ goes beyond just the re-entry from the pandemic and impacts the core of how work will happen in the future. These changes mean that we need to shift the way we lead. Thus, we need to not only understand the stress and emotional factors that our employees face, but we also need to address those factors head-on, creating a more welcoming and safer workplace, develop leadership routines that account for employee emotions, and enhance our leadership communication skills.

Our work with experts in human dynamics and our own expertise in this field allowed us to gather key behavioral insights into an actionable toolkit for managers. Leading Human™ focuses on four key areas that leaders can work on to help drive a successful transition. Our work has shown that Creating Psychological Safety, Building a Team Charter, Implementing Human-Centered Routines, and Charting a Clear Path Forward can make a significant difference in employees’ emotional connection to the company and successful re-entry. The book guides managers through specific rationale on each of those key areas and gives them specific tools to implement some of the ideas.

A collective 40+ years of working with organizations to apply behavioral science for increased performance went into creating these resources. Don’t get left behind in today’s hyper-competitive world –grab your copy here.

Has COVID-19 Permanently Changed “How We Work?”

Woman sitting down with two other people looking concerned
Companies need to be cognizant of the complex emotional factors impacting =the new normal

Welcome to the new working world.

Your team is split – some people are coming into the office, some are staying virtual, and even more are taking a hybrid approach. 

You have new silos in the organization – not around job functions, but around political beliefs. 

Employees are demanding to have a better work-life balance – they don’t want to work 50+ hours and miss their kid’s soccer game or their workout routine. They are burnt out from the pandemic. Many realize that they like some of the benefits of working from home, yet they miss the camaraderie and connections they get by being in person. Expectations have shifted and they expect you to be able to provide them with the best of both worlds or they probably won’t stick around. 

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Back to In-person Work Requires a New Type of Leadership

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The Leading Human Package is Today’s Essential Guide to Help Leaders Navigate the Next Year

At the time of this writing we’re hovering around a 50% vaccination rate for adults in the US. 

As the progress continues, companies are looking forward to the time when they can start bringing more of their employees back into the office.  This forward-thinking has focused a lot on the physical building design and safety protocols but is often missing a key aspect of the return to work: their employees’ emotional wellbeing.  

While many companies have started to bring people back slowly, there has not been a rush except for aside from essential businesses where it has been required. The new normal will probably look nothing like the old normal.   

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Returning to Work is More Emotional Than We Might Think

Distressed employee looking at his computer with his head in his hand
Companies that fail to address return to work concerns will see large rates of employee attrition

We are in a unique time right now in the US.

With vaccines readily available and cases of COVID-19 falling, companies are looking to bring people back into the office or install a hybrid model of work that allows flexibility. 

This shift brings with it a lot of opportunity but also exposes some larger potential downsides.

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Overcoming Vaccine Hesitancy With Behavioral Science

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Behavioral Science Principles That can Reduce Vaccine Hesitancy

According to recent polls, the number of Americans who are unwilling to get the COVID-19 vaccine has recently dropped to around 1 in 5 Americans (Monmouth University Poll, 4/14/21). This is significantly down from prior polls but still has a large segment of our population resisting a way to end this pandemic, save lives, and get our economy rolling again. 

So where is the hesitancy coming from?

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Experience Matters: Helping Companies Communicate More Effectively

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Good Communication is Key to Engagement

Numerous companies have a difficult time building engagement and trust with their employees. 

The problem doesn’t always have to do with their processes or procedures or even management behaviors –in many cases it has to do with how they communicate to their employees. In over 20 years of helping companies solve these issues, we’ve found that companies often don’t communicate with their employees in a way that helps them understand and buy-in to the very programs that are designed to engage them.  

While some companies have significantly improved their ability to create professional-looking presentations and graphically appealing brochures, they still have not fully embraced bringing a behavioral science approach to their internal communications to communicate in a more human way.

This is where we help. 

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Once is Not Enough – Incentive Communications Need a Campaign

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Four Steps to Communicating Incentives

There is an old adage in advertising that says, “people need to see an ad seven times before they are influenced by it.” What does this mean for your incentive programs?

While advertisers may argue about the exact right number (I’ve seen some say that it takes 20 times – really, that seems overkill?), the concept that multiple views of information drives behavior has been shown to be true.  This is called “effective frequency” in the advertising world. 

In our internal communication world, we call it a communication campaign and organizations don’t use campaigns as often as they should. In the world of incentives, a full campaign can be a fantastic tool to add to your toolbelt.  

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12 Magic Words to Unlock Sales Performance

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The Power of Word Choice

Prevail, accomplish, compete, strive, thrive, triumphed, achieve, mastered, win, success, gain, attain.

What do these words have in common?

When used appropriately they have the power to increase performance by 15% (or more!).

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Engage your reps with stories, anticipation, and graphic recall

Presentation on a laptop on a table with hands and text
Whiteboard videos can provide up to 15% greater retention of information

Telling your “incentive story” with video creates greater engagement, higher recall, and an overall increase in IC plan knowledge.  

If you’ve seen the Academy Award-winning movie, Schindler’s List, at the mention of the girl in the red coat, you can probably recall the specific scene I’m referring to vividly. This singular scene often stands out as the most revered and remembered scene in the movie. If you have not seen the movie, it is a black and white film yet in this specific scene there is a little girl walking through a crowded ghetto in a red coat.  

Little girl stands out in a red coat amongst a crowd of black and white soldiers
“The Girl in the Red Coat” is a fantastic example of vivid visual storytelling

Her red coat stands out vividly in comparison to the black and white coloring of the rest of the film. It captures our attention and draws our eyes to focus our attention on her. We follow her among the throngs of people and watch as she comes in and out of our view.  

So what does this have to do with incentives?

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A Home Run for IC Directors

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Create a Great IC Program AND Make Sure it is Understood

Incentive compensation professionals work hard at developing incentive plans that drive employee motivation while also meeting their company’s strategic objectives.

In the past, this has been achieved by using rules of thumb and stringent financial analysis. Yet, hard work is not enough in today’s turbulent times.  

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Behavior Matters!