Do you focus on solutions, or solving problems?
When you focus on solving a problem, you become an expert on the problem. When you consciously decide to focus on solutions, you become an expert on what's working. Which one would you prefer to be?
The first step in developing a solution focussed approach to your challenges at work, or at home, is to ask; What is it you want? Spend as much time as you need at this stage. Because once you have agreement on what it is you want, then the solutions will come more easily. Avoid the problem focussed trap. Put problem focussed ideas and talk on the sideline.
When you make a conscious decision to focus yourself and your team on "What's working" instead of "What's broken", you are taking a positive approach, which in term brings a more positive attitude and increased confidence. The team can feel more comfortable to think in terms of new alternatives, brainstorming, ideal solutions - instead of being hamstrung in the issues of the past.
Developing a solutions focus means you zone in on
What's working (in other areas / at our competition / ways other people do things)
Progress we have made already
A problem focussed discussion zones in on
What's wrong and what needs fixing
Blame and control
Causes in the past
Weaknesses / Deficits / Complications
Reference: The Solutions Focus, Paul Z Jackson & Mark McKergow, 2007.
Kirsty Janney - My Executive Coach - Personalised Coaching Solutions - I work with individuals, managers and their teams to improve performance at work every day. For a confidential discussion about your coaching requirements, contact me at email@example.com
This is a great time to set goals to be achieved by the end of the year.
It can be easy to let goal setting slip by. But whether you work in your own business, in a corporate environment or searching for that perfect job. Goal setting is a great way to get you on track and focussed.
What would you like to achieve by the end of 2013? Your goals can be around customer numbers, increasing profit, achieving a work life balance, getting your office organised, building a website or getting a promotion.
Whatever your target is, the key to achieving your goals is to set them! Say it out loud. Write it down. Work out what you need to do to make it happen. And start on the first task.
It’s important to keep track of how you’re going, to give yourself a pat on the back along the way, and also keep setting new tasks each week.
Kirsty Janney, My Executive Coach, - Personalised Coaching Solutions
I work with individuals, managers and their teams to improve performance at work every day. For a confidential discussion about your coaching requirements, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Setting tasks and milestones each week is a great way to get yourself on track to achieving your long term goals. It's also really important to take stock of what you're achieving along the way.
Take 5 minutes each week to remember "What have I achieved this week?"
Research shows that when we spend time to take stock of what we're doing well, this has the spin off effect of providing us with more self-confidence, broadening our mind in terms of solutions for future problems and challenges, and also helping us to feel more positive about ourselves in general.
There's many books on the power of positive thinking. Positivity by Barbara Fredrickson, is a great one. Medical researchers have conducted studies showing that positive thinking can actually promote better cell growth!*
So, remember this week to take 5 minutes to give yourself a pat on the back and appreciate what you've achieved.
*Crowley & Lodge (2004), "Emotion, plasticity, context and regulation: Perspectives from affective neuroscience," Psychological Bulletin 126: 890-909