HR Consulting and Coaching

Pipsy Blog

The official blog site of Pipsy

Flash Mob Organizational Change

Traditional organisational change is a top-down process. Change at a societal level is now emerging from the grass-roots  for example flash mobs, the umbrella revolution or slow food. Could flash mobs be the next wave of organisational change?

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Four Organisational Time Thieves

Why are we working longer hours but are actually less productive. What organisational culture practices are stealing your time?

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Mindfulness: Coping Strategy or Cure?

Mindfulness is hugely in fashion at the moment. But before you leap to run a mindfulness course at your company ask if mindfulness is really the cure, or just a coping strategy.

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Will you be replaced by a robot?

Robots have already replaced many jobs in the manufacturing industry. And the trend is continuing into new industries especially if they are dull, dangerous or dirty. Will your job be next?

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12 Mind Hacks to Improve your Focus

Busy Pedistrian streetThe final summary in the series on how to improve your attention and focus, so you can get out of the office earlier. 12 tips to get more done by making sure your mind is in the optimal state, you know your priorities and know how to focus on them.

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Oops where did the day go?

Distraction Smart PhoneYou know the feeling: You should have done something today, really, really should have…… but somehow it just didn’t get done. Especially if it wasn’t your most enjoyable task or project, and the deadline is some way off in the distant future. And there was just so many other things; emails, internet, phone calls, that called for your attention.

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Saying No - nicely

Say noHow can you say no and not feel guilty. Most of the time we try to do this by apologising, perhaps a little too much, and giving a long explanation of everything else you have to do. This puts the person immediately into a defensive mode, making them to worry they can’t do it without help, or feel bad for having asked you as you are so busy. Try these steps.

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Getting the ROI for your time and energy

Return on Investment time energyWhat happens when you just have too much to do? Typical advice is to prioritize. One way to prioritze is to invest and schedule your time where you get the best return on your investment of time and energy. Imagine it the same as ROI for financial investment. Ask yourself - if I invest my time and energy now what is the payback I will get in the future?

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The Busy Trap: Get some Focus

BoredAsk anyone these days and they say they are busy or “crazy-busy”. To say otherwise would be somehow to admit that you aren’t ambitious or important. But being busy is not the same as being productive. The question we really need to ask ourselves is at the end on the day, not how busy was I, but what have I achieved and what impact has this had.

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Sucking Up or Addiction: Why are you doing emails after hours?

Email while dinner with friendsWorking after hours answering an email here or there does not make us more productive. We need to set boundaries between work and home to make sure that we have some time to refresh and re-energise our brain for the next day at work. 

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Clock Your Body Clock

Businessman asleep in meetingEveryone has their own unique rhythm – early bird or night owl. Try to use this simple worksheet to to track your energy levels through the day. You might know this already, or  try tracking for a few days and see what pattern comes out. Then schedule your brain work to your energy peaks.

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Driven to Digital Distraction

Your attention span is longer than a goldfishIs your attention span longer than a goldfish? Smartphone and computers have been blamed from being so distracting that they are decreasing our attention span to 8 seconds, 1 second less than a goldfish! You’ll be pleased to know this is another urban myth

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Time Management is Dead: Now it's Attention Management

There are only so many hours and minutes in a day and you can’t manage the time. But you can manage your attention, focus and productivity. So declutter your mind as
we have limited mental capacity. Our brains are well suited to creating ideas, but not remembering ideas or facts.
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Make your Brain Bigger with Exercise

The good news is that to improve your concentration and focus you don’t need to be a weekend warrior by running marathons or competing in an ironman. Research has shown that 30-60 minutes of walking, 3 times a week has positive effects on the brain, reducing stress and putting you in a productive brain state. Even as little as 10 minutes a day was shown to boost school children’s concentration. Don’t sit there, get out and go for a walk.
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The Torture of Lack of Sleep

Sleep deprivation is a form of torture because our brain stops functioning properly without sleep. But even moderate sleep deprivation impairs performance significantly. After 16-17 hours of being awake your performance is equivalent to driving drunk.A lack of sleep impacts our ability to perform well and ability to focus on tasks making us less productive.

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Stress Makes You Stupid

We often say “I can’t think straight” when we are busy, feeling overwhelmed and stressed. We are saying what neuroscientists are now proving - when we are stressed our decision making, logical thinking and cognitive functioning is not as good. That’s because your brain is in the defensive mode instead of the discovery mode.

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Tips to get out of the office earlier

Are you working long hours and then only just finding time to squeeze in family, friends and fitness? What if you could power the same amount of work but save an hour a day? Then you could get out of the office earlier to enjoy an evening and have a bit more time to do what you want.

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The Perfect Storm: High Stress and Low Engagement

With tough economic times organisations are undergoing cut backs, restructuring and delayering. Employees are stressed and fearful. What can you do when you have the perfect storm of high stress and low engagement?


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Copy Paste Employee Engagement doesn't work

Why would you want to work for google? Free food, massage rooms or the organised fun. We find it has more to do with the culture of impactful work, openness and giving employees a voice.


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Employee Engagement Bloopers 2015

The Pipsy Employee Engagement Bloopers award to four companies who have managed to make employee engagement worse through the year with injustice, untrustworthy management and unfairness.

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The Dinosaurs of Employee Engagement Surveys

The annual employee survey is going the way of the dinosaur - extinction. Read about the new tech and tools now available for agile, fast surveys.

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Four ways to make the business case for employee engagement

If you need to make a business case for investment in an employee engagement project here are four ideas to make it really convincing.

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Freelancing: Your Future Career

By 2020 in US Freelancing is expected to be 50% of the available workforce. Will you be forced into freelancing?

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Back to the Future

What was business like 76 years ago. The finding of an internal memo from 1939 it seems we face many of the same challenges today

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Back to Reality: Beating post-vacation blues

Can't get excited about going back to work after the vacation?

Perhaps you are suffering from post-vacation blues. Perhaps it is time for a few changes in career, job or life.

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The CV Black Hole

Between 30-65% of applications to company on-line career site go into the CV black hole. How can you ensure your application is really read? Is your company ruining its reputation as an employer of choice and missing out on good talent by ignoring applicants?


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What ever happened to the 40 hour work week?

Excerpts from a talk given by Jane Piper of Pipsy at the Ignite Zürich event on 3rd July 2015.
How many of us work more than 40 hours per week? A survey from EY shows that at least half of us are regularly working over 40 hours per week.

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Vacation - on-line or off-line

Should you be reading your emails, checking the internet and responding to calls when on vacation? Some companies such as Daimler and Volkswagen are setting policies to reduce out of hours and vacation work by their employees - why?


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All Joking Aside....

Next time you say “all joking aside” in a team meeting think again. Humour in meetings leads to better team performance according to a recent study in the Journal of Applied Psychology.

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It's all about the money...or is it?

Based on a true story…..
It is annual review time and my friend, an engineer, has received his time-slot with the boss. What will be his strategy this time? Last year, his first year in the company, he got a standard increase. But this year is different – now he has hit his stride.

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Why do annual performance reviews?

I recently had lunch with a friend, who told me I was so lucky to have started my own company, as I wouldn’t have to do an annual performance review. She told the story of her performance review meeting where her boss said he had to give her an average rating, even though her performance was excellent because she’d been promoted last year. “Why?” she asks her boss, “because the top scores have to go to other people who need to be promoted this year”. This doesn’t make sense to my friend (or anyone)...

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Storytelling, cartoons and cultural change – an unlikely mix?

What do stories and cartoons have to do with trying to change an organisation’s culture? It seems an unlikely mix of play with serious business. Based on the recent cultural evolution project we found that stories and cartoons are a great way to get employees engaged in a discussion about changing the organisational culture.

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Cultural Development

Congratulations to Pöyry for winning an award for their cultural development project as one of the five most innovative Human Resources projects. Thanks to all the people involved, especially the project team and the project leader Jane Piper of Pipsy. The Boston Consulting Group and World Federation of People Management Associations (WFPMA) recognised the project for its new ways of involving people in changing an organisational culture. The competition was fierce and the winners were selected from over 3,500 survey responses in 101 countries.

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