12. Aug, 2021


This paper is double-edged. It is intended to alert the recruit and the recruiter to common mistakes at interview.

PART 1 explores preparation and professionalism. PART 2 personal integrity and teamwork.


PART 1: Preparation & Professionalism

1)    Know What You Know – Most organisations have an Internet presence and can be easily researched. Check out the trading position of the organisation interviewing you. Ask yourself, “Do I really want to work with them for the next 10-years?”. Research latest annual accounts; who their primary competitors are; who the CEO/Chairperson is together with where they came from and when? If there is missing info’ or something you don’t understand, add it to Being Yourself (see question 4) below)

2)    Arriving Late – Unpunctuality contradicts any habit of completing tasks on time. Lateness, without a genuine reason, tells the interviewer that you can be unreliable. However, an explanation of the cause of a genuine delay, is your chance to redeem yourself stating reasons in a clear and concise manner. In short, the person who is punctual respects everyone’s time.

3)    Arriving Too Early – Can anxiety be good? When tummy butterflies fly in formation it can be a good signal that your psycho (mind) and soma (body) are in harmony. Sometimes, however, those same butterflies can overcompensate. It is always a good idea to allow for predictable traffic delay when journeying to a new venue. This demonstrates forethought and planning skills. If you arrive more than 10-minutes prior to your scheduled interview, DO NOT GO IN! Instead, go to a nearby café, window-shop, or take a stroll in a park. Relax!

4)    Being Yourself – always assume a trained interviewer is aware of someone ‘faking-good’, meaning deliberately behaving as something you are not. Many unprepared candidates (see 1) above) squander interview time by focusing on the insignificant, hoping they can avoid direct questioning. During your pre-interview prep-time (no later than 24hrs before your scheduled meeting), write down the kind of questions you can expect to hear: “What is your greatest success?” “What is your biggest career failure?” “How did you deal with it?“ “What would you do differently?” “If successful, where do you see yourself going with this company?” Prep’ some direct questions for your interviewer too, such as: “How did you come to join this organisation?” “Where do you see the company going in the next 3-5 years?” “How do you see me fitting in?”

5)    Listen, Listen and Listen More – The 5th Habit of Highly Effective People by the late Stephen R. Covey, is ‘Seek 1st To Understand, Then To Be Understood’. The art of all good communication is the ability to comprehend what another person is talking about! Though you are being interviewed to provide material information for a specific job-role, it does not mean you turn your ears off. A job interview is your opportunity to discover what will be expected of the successful candidate. Be prepared to politely pursue any conflicting or misunderstood information.

Next week we shall explore PART 2 personal integrity and teamwork

To explore this paper or arrange your workshop, email

Complicated IS Easy! Simple IS Hard!

5. Aug, 2021

Apologies for the lack of our BLOG last week; we experienced a technical problem

Coaching may be defined as on-the-job training for improved performance/productivity.  Effective coaching addresses the attitude, beliefs, expectations, talents and skills of the performer, which can be uncomfortable for both parties when a coach is not adequately trained.

3-essential reasons why many coaches avoid engaging:

Personality Awareness – failing to accommodate someone’s primary personality often leads to antagonism and conflict, especially when dealing with someone with a negative attitude. Some people respond better to the What and the How, so why distract them the Who and the Why. Other’s response better to the Who and the Why, so don’t distract them with the What and the How. Of course, everyone needs to explore the What, the Who, the Why and the How of most situations, but the order of doing so is essential to all mutually favourable outcomes. Think of it this way, if between 60-90% of those you meet do not share your personality traits, how do you think they will respond to you?

Attitude – goes hand-in-hand with beliefs and expectations, and all are open to misinterpretation. It can be demanding for a coach to know when someone is crossing the line of integrity. It can be even harder to describe someone’s poor attitude is depleting their personal productivity, or that they are having a negative impact on those around them.

Engaging - when a coach engages with someone about their poor performance, it is personal.  Personal productivity reflects who someone is striving to become. When a coach proffers well-intentioned guidance, in a manner that is favourably received, pushing someone into a stress response is unlikely. But, preparing for possible pushback is an essential skill of an effective coach.

Questioning – discovers where someone is right now, and where they want to be. It helps the person identify all possible solutions to close any performance gap, and agree which is the best solution(s) to pursue. In short, coaches require a toolbox of soft-fact questions that help their incumbent navigate their own way out their current predicament. If it's their idea, they won't argue with it!

How do you coach someone who is feeling dispirited?

All highly effective coaches understand the power of recognising and adjusting to each of the four Primary Personalities (PP), defusing predictable stress responses. They also take into account their own PP to ensure they are not exacerbating the other person’s negative attitude. Most importantly, these coaches think about and are prepared to discuss possible root-causes of a negative attitude.

The Triangle

The Person - Some people you coach may have a naturally competitive outlook. Others, a submissive outlook. Negative influences on either can include personal health, domestic problems, or failing to secure their personal reward system (motivation).

Oher People - The person you are coaching may be responding to a conflict with a co-worker, a customer, or supplier - often personality centred. Many people can feel excluded by colleagues or underappreciated by their leaders. When people don’t feel they are valued as part of something important, they can become disagreeable, tense, or sceptical.

The Job ~ Consider the possibility that the job-role itself is creating excessive stress, which triggers negative emotions that manifest in the behaviour of a team member. Completing job-descriptions reveal what is actually expected of them.

Helping someone with a poor self-image.

Keep in mind that any of the three categories above could be creating poor self-image, or that it may be the result of a combination of all three. Regardless of the root-cause, a good coach pays close attention to his people when attempting to help them discover solutions to their poor outlook; what is disrupting the work that needs to be done, the workplace culture, or the team’s performance?

Here are some soft-questions to help someone find their own solutions.

Be Patient – avoid an abrupt or off-hand manner. Be sensitive to the individual when you explain what you’ve witnessed. Use evocative words that don’t attack the person’s motivations. For example, you might say, “I‘ve noticed when you arrive at work you tend to isolate yourself, and can sometimes be a bit short with people when they come to you for help.”

Saying something like, “Why are you always rude with your co-workers? I think you have a big chip on your shoulder that you need to fix” is likely to provoke a win/lose or lose/lose response.

Seek to Understand - asking soft-questions and genuinely listening to the answers helps people feel they’re being understood. They are less likely to reject, deflect, or offer excuses. Be sure to acknowledge how they feel. For example, you might say, “When you’re fighting traffic for two-hours every day, I can see why it would make you feel a bit down.”

Sometimes, people have a legitimate blind spot and may not realize how noticeable their poor behaviour has become. Good coaches have the courage to acknowledge that everyone is human, and may become frustrated from time-to-time.

Observations - ask how their negative emotions or attitudes are adversely affecting their performance, their team, or their home life. To do this, help them see the bigger picture, and to understand what greater success feels like. This moment is a test of their emotional maturity and their ability to look at their behaviour from another’s perspective. Give them time to reflect, and consider the point you are trying to make.

Civility - respect is another essential part of effective coaching. For example, you can reaffirm the need to consider others. Ask what they think about personal management of irritations, or disruptions. Point out that when things in life seem difficult, they can talk it through with you, or another mentor, or a counselor. The bottom line is that self-awareness is a legitimate job requirement for which everyone must take responsibility.

Coaching - correcting a team member’s poor attitude requires a defined outcome. Engage the person you are working with by agreeing simple but specific tasks or goals. Ask them to outline their plan to help themselves.

Close the Conversation - by summing up important points. For example, you could say, “Thanks for your ideas and being open with me.” You might add a few additional benefits of making the proposed changes they have suggested. Finally, set a time to review progress, explore other options if their plan isn’t working, and celebrate success when it is.

If you follow this process and balance your approach by not shying away nor coming on too strong, others will appreciate your interpersonal skills that help them manage their attitude and emotions to achieve greater reward, and get more satisfaction from their work.

The alternative, is that they will leave you for a competitor.

To arrange your Coaching4Growth Workshop, email

Complicated IS Easy! Simple Is Hard!


22. Jul, 2021

Selling; Managing; Administrating; Recruiting; and, Training forms our S.M.A.R.T model, which forges simple but critical links between the 5 *strategic areas for all business growth.

Each of the 5 strategic headings above contains 4 **tactical headings:

  • RELATING = seek 1st to understand
  • DISCOVERING = begin with the end in mind
  • ADVOCATING = think win/win
  • SUPPORTING = put 1st things 1st  

Today, we focus on TRAINING

Relating ~ In training, Seeking 1st to Understand means capturing the what, the who, the how and the why essential to the retention and application of new knowledge and skills pertaining to a specific job-role. Each Primary Personality responds better when their emotive/assertive traits are deliberately accommodated within the classroom or group or personal review setting.

The least patient of the four PPs is the COOL/TELLER who wants to be satisfied first by knowing WHAT this training will do for them. Then, the WARM/TELLER wants to know WHO is involved, and will be impacted by this training. Then, the COOL/ASKER, needs to know HOW this training fits together. And, finally the WARM/ASKER needs to know WHY they are being asked to commit to this training.

All hghly effective trainers design their introduction of each new level of knowledge or skill in the sequence: C/T; W/T; C/A; and W/A. To arrange your Training the Trainer to Train workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Discovering ~ In training, Beginning With the End in Mind means the effective application of (S.M.A.R.T) Selling-Managing-Administering-Recruiting-Training as the brick-and-mortar strategies for every growing organisation. Each is supported by the tactical elements of (R.D.A.S) Relate-Discover-Advocate-Support. To arrange you’re S&T workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Advocating ~ In training, Thinking Win/Win means consistently checking the job-application of new knowledge and skills through individual and team feed-back, together with routine career progression reviews, especially within the first 15-weeks. The 15-week Planner (x4 each year), is designed to be maintained by the incumbent, allowing their supervisor to critique what is happening and when to secure specific job-related productivity. To arrange your Career Progression workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Supporting ~ In training, Putting 1st Things 1st means ongoing career development. Whereas personality essentially remains the same throughout life, motivating-values change as rewards are obtained ~ or lost. Routine administering of our psychometric instrument reveals what is currently stimulating your individual people. Failure to apply this, with sincere interest, only serves to push your people into the arms of other organisations who appear more appealing. To arrange your Motivating-values workshop, email

*Strategy is working back from where you want to be, by when?

**Tactics is how you are going to get there?

To discuss this paper or arrange your workshop(s) email

Complicated IS Easy! Simple IS Hard!


15. Jul, 2021

S.M.A.R.T forges simple but critical links between the 5 *strategic areas for all business growth:Selling; Managing; Administrating; Recruiting; and, Training.


Each of the 5 strategic headings above contains 4**tactical headings:


  • RELATING = seek 1st to understand
  • DISCOVERING = begin with the end in mind
  • ADVOCATING = think win/win
  • SUPPORTING = put 1st things 1st  

Today, we focus on RECRUITING

Relating ~ Every manager hires his problems! A candidates’ CV/Resume may be the best you’ve ever seen, but if their behaviour and motivation is not in harmony with your organisation and reward system, such credentials are of little value to you. Managing begins with selecting the right candidate behavioural fit, and their desire to perform, which is why full and accurate psychometric profiling at outset, is critical. To that end, every job vacancy, especially within management, needs to identify HOW and WHY someone will deliver. We coach licenced users to self-administer our highly effective system, to compare: 1) your organisational job-description(s) and career motivating-values; with 2) the candidates’ self-description and personal motivating-values. To arrange your Select B4 Recruit workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Discovering ~ The detectives A-B-C creed states: Accept nothing; Believe no-one; and Confirm everything. The recruiter’s role is just the same. The only difference is that you are looking for a good person, not a bad one. Intellectual, Emotional, Physical and Spiritual are interconnected quotients, or qualities, that maintain life’s equilibrium. When in balance, everyone enjoys sailing the Ocean of life. Out of balance, they list one way or the other, drifting with wind and tide. Yet, striving and failing may also indicate an individual’s determination to succeed. Questioning any rapid change in company, position, location and income may reveal a seeker of the very position you have to fill. There are specific core success/failure questions that discover the IQ, EQ, PQ & SQ of the individual before you. To arrange you’re A-B-C workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Advocating ~ At this stage of the interviewing process, you have effectively assessed the best behaved, appropriately motivated and well-balanced candidate for your job-vacancy. But, why should they want to return for further interview? A well-composed 10-minute video of where your organisation has come from, where it is right now and where it is going,can be extremely evocative. The late Steve Jobs [1955-2011] emphasised ‘Great things in business are never done by one person. They are done by a team of people.’ To arrange your Career Presentation workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Supporting ~ All highly effective people make decisions quickly and change them slowly. Your best candidate wants to know s/he is acceptable to you. How do you offer the ‘olive branch’ without encouraging them to feel they are superior to your offer, or your existing team? How do you maintain the advocating win/win formula? Setting between-interview tasks is an effective practice that can secure your preferred candidate’s continued interest. But what tasks? And, how many? To arrange your Probability of Success workshop, email

*Strategy is working back from where you want to be, by when?

**Tactics is how you are going to get there?

To discuss this paper or arrange your workshop(s) email

Complicated IS Easy! Simple IS Hard!


8. Jul, 2021

As mentioned, our S.M.A.R.T model forges simple and critical links between the 5 *strategic areas for business growth: Selling; Managing; Administrating; Recruiting; and, Training.

Each strategic heading above has 4 **tactical headings:

  • RELATING = seek 1st to understand
  • DISCOVERING = begin with the end in mind
  • ADVOCATING = think win/win
  • SUPPORTING = put 1st things 1st  

Today, we focus on ADMINISTRATING

Relating ~ We prescribe the view that people predominantly display one of the four Primary Personalities, each made up of a combination of emotional (hi/lo) and assertive (hi/lo) behaviour traits. Whereas one might suppose lower levels of emotiveness and assertiveness are more common amongst sedentary workers, the observable evidence does not necessarily support this. Personality is HOW we behave when interacting with others. Motivation is WHY we keep doing what we do. As in selling and managing, too many good people defect to the competition due to a clash of behaviour. To avoid potential relationship conflict, each job-role, and each individual engaged to perform it needs to be in sync. Get it right, and individual productivity and loyalty are maximized. Get it wrong and your good people will leave. To arrange your Mutually Beneficial Leadership workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Discovering ~ By definition, every administrator is performing part of the boss’s job-role, or why have they been recruited? Sharing a job-role means delegation, which requires the boss to have a crystal-clear vision of required outcomes. Shared motivation is harmonised when understood through the completion of Motivating-values Instruments, whereby the boss and his/her incumbents produce profiles to compare and work to. To arrange your Motivating-values workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Advocating ~ Planning is doing the right, thing! Organising is doing the thing, right! Put together, you have someone who is doing the right thing, right! This requires a simple written description of WHAT things must be accomplished by WHEN, together with HOW they are best performed. To arrange your Creative Job-role workshop, email Get this right, and you may move on to …

Supporting ~ A famous general once remarked that war is won on its administration, and this is true of the continuing success within every enterprise. Over our years of professional coaching, we have witnessed more businesses reach a critical-mass of diminishing returns due to their limited power of administration than for any other reason. As with the best generals, managers must actively listen to their administrators. This is where regular inter-departmental interaction, and a reliable Active Task Analysis Planner come into their own. To arrange your Administration workshop, email

*Strategy is working back from where you want to be, by when?

**Tactics is how you are going to get there?

To discuss this paper or arrange your workshop(s) email

Complicated IS Easy! Simple IS Hard!