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Stereotypes Exercise

Stereotypes Exercise
Exercises, Diversity, Personal Impact

Article Rating:::: 3 Ratings :::: Monday, September 12, 2016

As we deal with a complex world, we make assumptions. This is an inbuilt function of our brain that helps us quickly make sense of the world around us. The problem with this is that sometimes these assumptions turn out to be wrong and misleading to the point that they can actually hinder our judgment.

An area where this is most prevalent is stereotyping. For example, you may see a homeless person. The straight forward assumption is that this person is poor and is poor as a result of making bad decisions in life. In reality, it could just be that he has experienced misfortune—a simple back luck that can happen to anyone at any time. Holding him responsible for this misfortune can be unfair.

The purpose of this exercise is to get the delegates to share information with each other on counter-examples and to see stereotyping with a new perspective.

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Why Most People Focus on Efficiency but Forget About Effectiveness

Why Most People Focus on Efficiency but Forget About Effectiveness
Exercises, Productivity, Goal Setting, Attention and Focus

Article Rating:::: 6 Ratings :::: Monday, August 29, 2016

There is a fundamental difference between efficiency and effectiveness. Most people focus on efficiency. How to get something done faster? How to get somewhere quick? How to achieve more in a given time? How to finish the day’s tasks and go home early? How to do little and get the most from it? How to do only 20% of the effort to get 80% of the results?

This is all good and important. However, it should not be at the expense of something much more important; effectiveness. This captures the idea that what you are doing is going to help you get closer to your goals. Effectiveness is purely personal since it is entirely based on your specific personal goals. In contrast, efficiency is universal—there is a way to do something faster and you can learn to do it too. Effectiveness is about how far you are from your goal and if what you are doing now is going to get you closer to that goal. Efficiency is about how fast you get there.

When it comes to time management, goal setting and productivity, most people tend to focus mainly on efficiency. What is an ideal time management system? What is a good calendar app? How can you do something faster? Where can you get training for it? In contrast, there seems to be very little focus on effectiveness; why are you doing what you are doing? Why should you be doing this rather than something else?

What is the point of getting somewhere faster when where you get to is not where you want to be? How important is it that you check where you are and where you are heading periodically rather than just constantly obsessing about how to get there faster?

If you look around, you will notice that many people are suffering from this misunderstanding and lack of awareness. People spend a huge amount of time getting a degree on a given topic only to realise it is not for them. In a big city, people rush back and forth to work day after day not thinking what this is all about and why they are in the rat race? People get into a job thinking that it is only temporary and end up staying there at pretty much the same level for thirty years and then feel unhappy that no one wants to employ them for anything else.

Hence, a reflection in this area can be quite an eye opener. It is important to learn how to be constantly aware of the distinction so that you don’t get carried away with efficiency at the expense of effectiveness.

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Diamond Ranking for Decision Making

Diamond Ranking for Decision Making
Exercises, Creativity, Decision Making

Article Rating:::: 0 Ratings :::: Monday, August 22, 2016

When making decisions, you often need to choose between a series of options. When told to rank options, people sometimes want to give the same rank to multiple options. In some cases, it might be more important to learn about the most and least preferred options rather than to spend time judging between the middle choices.

A technique known as Diamond Ranking can help you focus on the most and least preferred options.

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Mastering Delegation Skills

Mastering Delegation Skills
Exercises, Productivity, Delegation Skills, Management Skills

Article Rating:::: 2 Ratings :::: Monday, August 15, 2016

There is simply so much to do these days both professionally and personally. In order to move on to bigger and grander projects, there is eventually a need to delegate tasks. Delegation skill is fundamental in the professional growth of an individual. As you gain more experience and climb up the job ladder, it becomes increasingly important for you to delegate the details and grunt work to others and spend your time on management and high-level decision making.

Unfortunately, most people find delegation cumbersome or tedious. This is particularly the case with people who are not natural at asking others to do things for them or that they feel they want to remain in control.

There are, however, numerous benefits to delegations and also for people who are delegated too. These people get to contribute, prove themselves, work on something different and if the right tasks are delegated, grow and succeed in their professional lives.

Since there are so many parameters involved in making decisions on delegation, it is useful to approach this systematically. This exercise provides a structure that an individual can follow to see what tasks can be delegated, why they should be delegated and how.

This exercise is based on filling a detailed form and thinking about a variety of tasks both on a personal and professional level. As such it is best if the exercise is carried out individually rather than in a group. Have a group discussion afterwards once everyone has filled in their forms so that participants can learn from each other and get inspired.

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Team Building Exercise: Snakes and Plates

Team Building Exercise: Snakes and Plates
Leadership, Games, Exercises, Team Building, Communication Skills, Persuasion Skills, Planning

Article Rating:::: 5 Ratings :::: Monday, August 8, 2016

In this team building exercise, delegates work together to complete a task. It requires concentration, planning and fast execution. Here, the decisions made by one team can affect the performance of another so planning has to be as dynamic as the changing environment. This exercise is ideal to train people on quick decision making, leadership, persuasion skills and team work.

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Do You Need X as Much as You Think You Do?

Do You Need X as Much as You Think You Do?
Exercises, Productivity, Motivation, Stress Management, Goal Setting

Article Rating:::: 4 Ratings :::: Monday, August 1, 2016

In today’s world, we seem to be constantly chasing something; a new job, a new house, more money, more time, new cloth, a new partner, a new car, a new gadget and on and on. This chase is becoming a major source of anxiety for many people. It is like you live in a world where you can have a lot, but you are not getting much. The problem is not with you though. The problem is that several significant trends in the past century have led to the explosion of content, products and experiences. The availably of all of this is of course great for society. It makes living richer and more rewarding but it also means that today’s people would feel that they are missing out on a lot; in fact, more so than any other people in history simply because we have a lot more available to use.

As such, to reduce any potential anxiety that arises as a result of all this abundance and our inability to have it all, we must consciously practice being content and appreciative. By being content we focus on what we desire the most and take pleasure in having it. By being appreciative we focus on what we already have and feel happy about our good fortunes.

Many techniques exist for practicing being appreciative or content. Here is an exercise that help you in this regard. The questions can be answered individually and with as much time as necessary. The following instructions are provided as a guide in case you want to use the exercise during a training course and then follow it with a general discussion.

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Making Assumptions Training Exercise

Making Assumptions Training Exercise
Exercises, Diversity, Personal Impact

Article Rating:::: 3 Ratings :::: Monday, July 25, 2016

This exercise increases self-awareness of making assumptions about other people. Making assumptions is part of everyday life as we aim to simplify the complex world around us. However, it is important to be aware of making such snap judgements and don’t get carried away and suffer from the negative consequences of this behaviour.

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Evaluate Your Yesterday

Evaluate Your Yesterday
Exercises, Productivity, Goal Setting, Appraisal

Article Rating:::: 3 Ratings :::: Monday, July 18, 2016

This is a powerful exercise that helps delegates see if they have been efficient as far as their own goals and ambitions are concerned. Sometimes, people need a reminder that they could be getting carried away chasing unimportant tasks and errands at the expense of those that matter more. This exercise elegantly highlights this and can lead to some deep reflection on where people are in life and why they do what they do.

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What Can We Learn from Arnold’s Career Choices

What Can We Learn from Arnold’s Career Choices
Training Articles, Motivation, Goal Setting, Personal Impact, Appraisal, Planning

Article Rating:::: 4 Ratings :::: Monday, July 11, 2016

Is there such a thing as a good career or a bad career? Is there such a thing as a good hobby or a bad hobby? Such choices are often very personal so can we really say what is good for people and what is bad? Probably not, but we all know that these days a lot of people desire “success”. It seems that with success comes a lot of happiness affecting all areas of life. It is not the only way to gain happiness but it certainly can lead to it. Success is not always about careers or jobs; it can be about anything in a person’s life; it could be success in raising good children, success in gardening, success in being a likable person, success in being the first to achieve a feat, success in being good at a given skill, success in being useful to society or simply success in being happy and getting the most from life.

With the concept of success and happiness comes options and choices. We all need to make decisions about what careers to get into, what hobbies to engage in and what to spend our finite time on. The decision means that, yes there is such a thing as a good or bad choice that can in the long run influence your happiness.

Some people seem to excel at this. They make all the right choices and it seems that the world goes out of its way to accommodate their desires. How come they succeed so well? Perhaps on further examination we can discover the underlying principles that help one make good choices.

As an example, let’s consider an episode in the life of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s. No one can dispute that he had an extraordinary life so far and with his universality and fame, it is certainly worth examining his life to see how his decisions and interests has shaped his life.

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Energiser: Wake Them Up

Energiser: Wake Them Up
Exercises, Train the Trainer, Exercises for Kids, Presentation Skills, Large Group, Attention and Focus

Article Rating:::: 11 Ratings :::: Monday, July 4, 2016

It is just after lunch and you are about to teach a new theory to your delegates. Ideally you should not cover this after lunch but you have had no choice. You notice that delegates are falling sleep. Energy is low, concentration is gone and people are getting bored. What do you do? You need to energise them. Other than opening up the windows or calling for a break you can also use the energiser described here to awake the mind and the body. This exercise is particularly useful for younger delegates. For more senior delegates, you will need to make a judgment to see if this is a suitable activity.

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