Field Notes

Insights, inspiration and ideas. Observations on real-life challenges that our clients are facing and practical strategies to address them.


Four ways to re-ignite your team

At an Executive Workshop I ran this week, I was asked by a senior manager for specific advice for motivating, delegating increasing team performance. This is a common request but he seemed particularly troubled. I asked him to tell me a little more about his team. “My team is made up of some significantly different personalities. They seem motivated by different things, their ability to do the job varies and


There is somebody out there talking about you

Whether you know it or not, like it or not, there is someone out there talking about you. They are not making things up – in fact they are only repeating what you have told them. The problem is, you may not have told them enough to create the right impression. Worse still, you may have told them something which is now way out of date but they are still


Important or Urgent – can you prioritise both?

Recently I was asked to help a senior team of dedicated professionals who provided a key advisory role to the board in a major multinational. They wanted to be even more effective as demands on their time increase, but were facing challenges. It is a familiar story. Their challenges are similar to the challenges many of us are experiencing in our work: too many emails; too many demands; feeling we

How to hit sales targets

How to hit revenue targets without worrying about sales

The Problem How many sales meetings, executive meetings and board meetings have we all endured where sales results are behind expectations and most of the meeting is taken up by micro-analysing every sale in its final stages to see if it can be closed? A lot. In fact, I can remember only a handful that were relaxed and that was because the year’s quota was in the bag already. How


From university to your company: how ready are graduates?

In my experience, today’s graduates are bright, driven and great fun to have on board. But perhaps not quite as ready as we thought. Apart from the fortunate ones who were able to spend a placement year in industry (which thank goodness is becoming more common), many graduates will previously have had relatively low-paid, short term jobs probably in hospitality or retail. Even the more applied subjects like business studies

Inner game of tennis Andy Murray

Our Favourite Books on Inspiration: “The Inner Game of Tennis”

The Inner Game of Tennis – Timothy Gallwey At first glance, his book would seem to be suitable for tennis players but it so much more. Best-selling author Timothy Gallwey tackles the problem of how human beings interfere with their own ability to achieve and learn. Based on his own experience of taking part in competitive tennis matches, he suggests that every game has actually two parts – the outer


Our Favourite Books on Teams: “The Wisdom of Teams”

The Wisdom of Teams – Jon R. Katzenbach If you’re seriously interested in diagnosing nonperforming teams and creating ones that perform, you’ll enjoy this book. This book is the result of research into why teams are important, what separates effective from ineffective teams, and how organizations can tap into the rigour of building highly effective teams which combine to make high-performance organizations. Katzenbach and Smith share their insights into what

Marshall Goldsmith Olwyn Merritt

Our Favourite Leadership Books: “What got you here won’t get you there”

What got you here won’t get you there – Marshall Goldsmith I am incredibly fortunate to be able to work with Marshall Goldsmith, world-renowned business educator and coach. Dr. Marshall Goldsmith is the leading expert in leadership behavioural coaching and has a singular ability to help top leaders get results using practical and proven methods. This book is for you if you are an ambitious executive who works hard and is


The truth behind 7 Millennial myths that can supercharge your business

Interest in the so-called Millennial Generation (those born between 1980 and 2000) has spawned a whole new industry of consultants, writers and academics, all keen to persuade us that these people are different as employees and consumers. They tell us that Millennials require a different approach to employment and management than the previous generations of Generation X and Baby Boomers, but is that really true? There have been a number

Shackleton leadership lessons

Our Favourite Leadership Books: “Shackleton’s Way”

Shackleton’s Way  – Margot Morrell and Stephanie Capparelli If you are seeking an inspiring book about a leader who showed the true essence of great leadership under pressure, then this book will not disappoint. From 1914 to 1916, Sir Ernest Shackleton and his men survived the wreck of their ship, Endurance, in the crushing Antartic ice, stranded twelve hundred miles from civilisation with no means of communication and no hope