Two Questions to Transform Your Communication Skills

Two Questions to Transform Your Communication Skills, by Ryan Hansen

You know those moments where you hear something and it immediately changes the way you think? That wave of clarity crashes over you, and suddenly it all makes sense! I call these instances "lightbulb moments," and they have marked some important realizations throughout my life.

Two years ago, I had a lightbulb moment I'll never forget.

As I was sitting in a hotel conference room in Orlando, Florida, a trainer caught my attention with this line: "Today, I am going to instantly improve your communication skills with just two questions."

Looking back, I think I rolled my eyes. Okay dude, sure you are, I thought. Let's see you impress this room of trainers...

Then the trainer explained the two questions, and my lightbulb went on.

Human Behavior is Predictable.

People are funny. There are billions of us, from hundreds of countries, cultures, races, and religions, and yet, in many ways, we're all the same.

The...

Read More

Harnessing Moments to Create Experiences

Harnessing Moments to Create Experiences, by Haley Hansen

What if I told you that there is a science to creating positive, memorable experiences for your customers and your employees?

Thanks to authors Dan and Chip Heath, there certainly is! Dan and Chip are academic researchers - Dan works with Duke, and Chip is a professor at Stanford - and they also happen to be brothers. You might know them from their books Decisive, Made to Stick, or Switch, and I recently finished reading their latest book, The Power of Moments. This book is all about how and why certain experiences really stick with us and leave a lasting impact, and how we can use what we know to create lasting experiences for others.

As the Heaths explain, experience and memory are tricky concepts to quantify. The thing is, neither one really follows the pattern we would usually expect. However, we know for certain that memorable experiences - which the Heaths call "Defining Moments" - leave a long and significant impact in...

Read More

Leadership Toolbox: Reading List PART 2

A Reading List for Leaders, Part 2, from the Alloy Solutions Team

This is Part 2 in our Reading List series. Click Here for Part 1!

Perhaps the best part of being in the business of developing people is that you come across some truly outstanding resources for personal development. Scratch that - the best part is sharing those resources with others and watching their growth.

With that in mind, the Solutions Team has compiled the following list of our favorite books on personal growth and professional development. You can see the list for yourself, and if anything catches your eye, grab a copy for yourself on Amazon (links included below).

The Infinite Game - Simon Sinek
As Simon Sinek explains, most of us approach business goals like a series of finite games: short, defined periods with expressed goals and a clear endpoint. We chase quarterly sales goals and annual quotas. We know the rules and we know who else is playing, and we do anything we need to do to win THIS game. Then...

Read More

Leading When You're Not Sure What to Say

Leading When You're Not Sure What to Say, by Ryan Hansen

I am at a loss for words this week.

The last several days have been filled with hurtful words, painful scenes on unfolding in city streets and TV screens, and challenging - but heartfelt and important - conversations with friends and family. I find myself struggling to find the words to support and lead through days like these.

If you are leading people right now, you have probably found yourself in a similar place. Every day brings a new challenge, so how can we know what our people need from us? When they look to us for leadership, will we be prepared to answer? Great leaders are forged in crisis, and we are certainly in the middle of a leadership crisis right now.

The simple truth is this: in a crisis of humanity, the solution is human values. We need to connect with each other as people, more than as coworkers. Many of us have spent careers learning and perfecting every intricacy of the modern workplace...

Read More

Protecting Your "New Normal"

Protecting Your "New Normal" by Ryan Hansen

Two months ago, how many of us knew the best spot in our house for a video call? How many of us knew how to share our screens or choose a virtual background? How many of us had ever attended a "virtual happy hour," or even heard of such a thing?

The last few weeks have been unusual, to say the least, and it appears that we're in the early stages of returning to something that resembles business as usual. So as the homeschooling winds down and video calls begin to dwindle, you might consider: Are there any components of this time that I want to continue?

That question might have sounded crazy in March, when everything was unfamiliar territory. Weeks later, though, some of us have started to find a new routine. We've adopted new schedules, picked up new habits, even tried to learn new skills. Surely some of those are worth keeping, right? Let's take a look at some of the common themes from this period of isolation.

...

Read More

Resources for Leaders During Uncertain Times

Former U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt said, "A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor." After the last few weeks, I suspect we're all starting to feel like Ferdinand Magellan, the Portugese explorer who sailed all the way around the globe in 1519. Perhaps some days you feel more like the famous castaway Robinson Crusoe.

Whether you're feeling like an accomplished mariner or still finding your sea legs, rest easy knowing that you are facing down the same challenges as millions of other leaders around the world. That's really overwhelming, isn't it? Millions of leaders, all trying to solve the same set of problems. I have good news for you: millions of leaders are all trying to solve the same set of problems.

The global scale of our circumstances means that there are global truths in our circumstances. We're all stressed. We're all uncertain. We're all adjusting to new routines. Once again, the good news: when we all face similar problems, we can all...

Read More

A Simple Checklist for Well-Being

A Simple Checklist for Well-Being, from Alloy Solutions
Your guide to managing your physical, mental, and emotional health during isolation.

Time marches on, doesn't it? As these unprecedented times continue, our team has been inspired by the community reaction around the globe - millions of people have shared their insights into living under uncommon circumstances. With that in mind, here's a checklist for some basic daily activities to maintain your well-being:

Don't Skip Personal Hygiene

Years from now, we will probably look back and wonder why everyone decided that staying home meant shirking certain practices. Kick-start your daily productivity by sticking to this daily routine. Take a shower, brush your teeth, and face the day with confidence. Your family members will thank you.

Fuel Your Body

We all know that America runs on Dunkin, but your body runs on water. Make a point to get a few glasses of water each day, rather than a steady diet of coffee. The...

Read More

A Check-Up from the Neck Up

cindy braun edify Apr 10, 2020

A Check-Up from the Neck Up, by Cindy Braun

One Word . . . have you chosen your one word for the year 2020? Are you thinking maybe I should change it given the circumstances we are living? This idea for me was inspired by a book written by Jon Gordon, Dan Britton and Jimmy Page called “One Word that will Change Your Life.”

During my career in sales, marketing, facilitating and coaching, I have used many acronyms to keep my mind and behavior engaged positively toward making a difference in others’ lives. I haven’t done it perfectly and sometimes my actions may not have provided positive encouragement as desired. However, by following the instructions provided in this book, I have seen positive strides in my thinking and behavior.

Before I share with you my word selected for 2020, here is a word for you to consider adopting in your daily practice. This word adopted 15 years ago has dramatically impacted a positive change in my life. HALT - are you Hungry, Angry...

Read More

Leadership, Grief, and COVID-19

Leadership, Grief, and COVID-19, by Jamie Hansen, M.S., LPC

We are truly living in history. As the COVID-19 situation continues to unfold around the globe, circumstances are changing every day and the leaders among us have been called to sort out how we move forward through these unprecedented times.

After 20 years as a counselor (I still maintain my license), I cannot help but watch the local and global reactions to this crisis through the lens of a mental health professional. I spent years watching people deal with all sorts of situations in their personal and professional lives, and it occurred to me this week that I recognize what's happening on a local and global level. This is grief.

 Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross first outlined her five stages of grief in 1969. More than fifty years later, the Kubler-Ross model is still playing out in front of our eyes. Let's take a look at how these stages of grief are presenting themselves through this...

Read More

Leadership Toolbox: Reading List

A Reading List for Leaders, from the Alloy Solutions Team

Imagine, if you can, suddenly finding yourself with some extra time on your hands. Perhaps your office is closed to the public and you are working from home for the next few weeks, wiping out hours of commuting and meetings from your schedule. How will you spend this newfound time?

Certainly, you will have to adjust to your new surroundings and adapt your habits to fit new routines. Would you use this time to learn a new skill or knock out some chores you have been putting off? Maybe you're a personal-growth junkie like me, and you need something to keep your mind occupied so you can stay focused and motivated. To that end, I surveyed our Alloy team members to create a list of our favorite books on personal growth and professional development.

You can see the list for yourself, and if anything speaks to you, go ahead and grab a copy for yourself from Amazon (links included below).

This is Part 1 in our Reading List...

Read More
1 2 3 4
Close

Our Expertise, Sent Straight to You

From blog posts to training tips and our latest employee development courses, it's everything you want from a newsletter.
Complete the form below to subscribe.