Every company

That’s right every company requires adjustments and changes that are made from time to time to encourage growth and address issues that may be present. For many business owners or managers, company-wide changes can often be intimidating and overwhelming when working with a large team of people. Fortunately, there are a few ways to implement sustainable change that is sustainable within your company.

Assess Needs

Before looking at how to enact change in your company, you must first know what changes need to be made. While you may have a general idea of your company’s pain points, it’s important to critically assess the current situation. Seek out feedback from employees and customers, and then look at each stage in your business processes and procedures. Ultimately, this review process will highlight your company’s strengths and weaknesses so that you can identify gaps in your strategy or inefficiencies in your current processes. From there, you can make an actionable plan for change within your organization based on the current needs of your company.

Start Small

Begin by starting small to ensure that the changes that are made don’t overwhelm your team and are easy to understand. Starting small can help to address issues early on to prevent them from hurting the company. 5S News explains that showing success in a particular area of your organization will give others a reason to buy-in to the system, creating a sustainable foundation for successful implementation of these changes throughout the organization.

Develop a Great Training

RMA Environmental Services encourages to make it a point to develop a well-thought-out training program for your employees to ensure that every team member is on the same page. Your employees will understand the goals, the plan, and how they can take part each day. The program can allow the transition to be smoother if everyone is informed and will help them understand how the company will begin to make changes by communicating properly. During this time, your employees will get the chance to ask questions and discuss the new changes to ensure that there aren’t any misunderstandings.

Create Opportunities

SimplicityHR talks about how it’s important to create opportunities for your employees to get more involved with the efforts moving forward and can have the influence to make the changes to ensure that your entire team works together. You’ll need to avoid strapping the hands of those who are needed to make the changes successful by providing them with a bit of freedom and inviting them to join in on the adjustments. Make time for coaching and mentoring while moving forward to ensure that they understand the steps that they need to take. Offering feedback consistently will also allow them to continue making the changes over time in the correct way and understand any issues that come up.

Although it can be challenging to implement sustainable change within your company, it’s not impossible to make a start. By following the right tips and methods, you can make the process easier for your team and execute sustainable change that contributes to the future success of your company.

Continual training is essential for sustainable improvement. Hiring mentors and trainers for group workshops and conferences is one of the best ways to shake things up and keep people learning. MentorSF is here to help with all of your training needs!

          

My friend and fellow TEDxProvincetown 2018 speaker, Anne Stott is at it again showing her incredible talent with Jump Go, her latest project hitting the airwaves, video and the “interwebs” this month.

I got to meet Anne last summer when we both performed at the first TedxPrvincetown. While I talked about finding myself and being the “big hairy bear in the room”, Anne rocked the house with a talk on risk and losing yourself to find yourself.

So it was fitting that while I was in Provineton recently, Anne’s newest project launched as I was coaching the 2019 TEDxProvincetown cadre of speakers get ready for a new set of talks on September 14, 2019, from 6 – 9 pm at Fishermans Halls (ticket are still available at TedxProvincetown.com/tickets).

 

Anne, rocked TEDxProvincetown in July of 2018 with her talk on the importance of allowing yourself to “get lost to find yourself“, now takes on a new theme in her musical repertoire with Jump Go.

Anne describes herself as “an indie rock singer/songwriter, an actor, a political rabble-rouser, a thought thinker, and a dream dreamer.” How could I not be drawn to her creative magic!

Jump Go is so good that Anne has been nominated for a New England Music Award for Best Female Performer.  Her previous two full-length albums include Love Never Dies & Pennsylvania, as well as a wealth of written word project including chapbooks and multimedia art pieces.

The video is up on youtube. WATCH IT HERE
The track is available at
Itunes HERE
Amazon AND HERE
Bandcamp OR HERE
The song is streaming on
Spotify SEARCH HERE
Apple Music AND THEN HERE
And pretty much anywhere else you might listen to music.
Including some radio stations around the country and in Canada.

Anne also has a Patreon page for those of you who believe in the power of crowdfunding to support independent artists, writers, and thinkers. The Patreon model takes all the industry out of the equation and harnesses the power of the artist/fan connection.  I am a Patreon believer myself and have used it to support the creative efforts of BawdyStorytelling and my favorite podcast Hillbilly Horror Stories.

          

Last year I wrote about my discovery of Rodan & Field. They offer a line of facial products, traditionally marketed for women, but with a growing male fan base. I use several of the products on a daily (sometimes twice daily) routine and have been overwhelmingly happy with the results.

Being someone who generally isn’t a big fan of lots of steps, I found the simple three-step method worked perfectly for me.

My Fav Rodan & Field Products include

ENHANCEMENTS Active Hydration Serum. This I carry everywhere. First thing I put on after a plane trip or when I am in super drying environments. A little goes a long way and it dries super fast. I put it on either before my moisturizer and sunscreen or as a “touch up” during the day when my face is feeling drawn and dry.

ENHANCEMENTS Micro-Dermabrasion Paste; which I use 1 -2 per week as a scrub before I get into the shower.

ENHANCEMENTS Active Hydration Bright Eye; for a real treat. I use this one less than I should, but when I remember to use it I can see the difference under my eyes

 

Step 1 REDEFINE Daily Cleansing Mask ( When I am not using the Enhancements paste.) This takes only a few minutes to put on and by the time I am ready to shower, it’s dry and ready to wash off. I tend to use this most day and didn’t find it drying and causing any redness. In fact, I found it I actually have fewer issues with my face overall. 

Step 2 REDEFINE Pore Minimizing Toner. Toners were an oddity for me, but I find that a quick swipe after I wash my face, help close the pores and leave my face more read for the moisturizers. Since it comes in the kit, I use it.

Step 3 am REDEFINE Triple Defense Treatment Broad Spectrum SPF 30  is my daily facial conditioning moisturizer and sunscreen. But since I prefer to use a higher spf I actually use this and add a little of my preferred sunscreen about 30 minutes later to ensure I am getting the coverage I want.

Step 3 pm REDEFINE Overnight Restorative Cream. While counter-intuitive to me initially, Putting the overnight cream on my face actually helps so that in the morning I wake up less dry and puffy.

 

You will notice there weren’t any links on this page initially – but I recently got so many folks asking that I have added them back – if you would like more information on Rodan & Field Products, you can click on the “I don’t have an account” which will bring you right to the full store without you having to  add any details.


Note: So a few folks have already asked about the comment above; the reason for that was that while I do have the ability to make sales as part of the R&F team plan I am on , unless I want to pay a monthly service fee; they dont provide a custom account url. They reserve that for the “pulse” group. But as of July 2019, I paid the monthly plan since so many people responded and it is now linked to my account so that means I do get a few bucks from any orders using these links.

 

 

 

          

Speaking of Wellness…

A few months back I did a 7-day challenge as a way to introduce myself to the Plexus line, the end result is enough success that I was willing to look into adding some to my daily routine.

They offer a line of supplements that help with those gut critters in your system, that when out of wack have effects on some folks from stress to bloating, gas and poor sleeping. The ones I am personally using now include:

Slim® Hunger Control

Slim® Microbiome Activating

Lean™ Chocolate or Vanilla 

Active™

I initially sampled two of the products they call the “pink” drinks. The first was Plexus Slim® Hunger Control then I went on to try Plexus Slim® Microbiome Activating, which has now become my go-to drink every morning or afternoon.  Both of these fruit-flavored mixes worked over the course of 7-days to help adjust my dairy issues, decrease my late afternoon “drop” and lowered my “snacking”. The big difference between the two is the added fiber in the Hunger Control version.  For an info sheet on Slim Hunger Control visit it here. You will find an infosheet on Microbiome Activating Slim here.

I then went on to add the Plexus Lean™ line as my replacement protein powder. The Lean line is whey-based with 15 grams of whey protein, along with 24 bioavailable vitamins and minerals (including 5-MTHF methylated folate). it comes in a  Chocolate and Vanilla version. I use both of these at times used with both Water or even Iced Coffee to some good results.

 Plexus Active™ is my latest find from the Plexus line. products. Active is a supplement mix of green tea and yerba maté provide healthy energy while l-theanine supports enhanced focus. It also includes natural caffeine sources plus Citrulline Malate and an antioxidant-rich blend of plant extracts like turmeric, blueberry, tart cherry, kale, and more provide nitric oxide support for better daily performance and muscle recovery. For an info sheet on Plexus Active™ Info Sheet here.

For more details on the Plexus lines I use, some of the other products and a link for samples visit the Plexus Samples Page.  If you choose to order a sample through the link, you will receive an email with tips for using the product sample that will be arriving soon. You can find Plexus Worldwide on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 

          

4 Characteristics of a Cohesive Team

Posted July 25, 2019 By GuestSpot

Many businesses get things done by assigning projects to task-oriented teams. When a group of people work together, they can complete tasks for the good of the company. However, when the team cannot cooperate, project progress comes to a halt. If you take care when preparing a team, you can make sure that they will work together and reach the goals you assign them.

Quality Communication

Jostle asserts that in order for a team to function well, its members must be able to communicate. At the team’s inception, you may want to establish some rules to help this process. This is especially important if your team includes people who are introverted. For example, rather than doing a freeform brainstorming session, you might try going around the room so ideas are voiced one at a time, encouraging the participation of the whole group. It is also important to make certain that every team member sees all project-related emails and texts. 

Personal Introspection

It is easier to be part of a group when you are confident in your own identity. If you are developing a long-term group, you might work with them to understand their personal learning styles, communication styles, and conflict styles. Understanding your own quirks can help you be more understanding of another team member’s perspective. CMOE points out that personal discovery leads to an improved commitment to team goals, agreements, and action plans.

Its about all the parts coming together as one

Complementary Skillsets

Part of assembling a winning team is knowing what each member brings to the table. There are some people who are gifted leaders who can inspire others. There are some people who are happiest working behind the scenes. A wise project manager will gather a team whose personalities and skills complement each other. This kind of matching improves the team because each member feels necessary and important. Recognizing the skills of team members also makes organization easier. You can point to a reason why each name has its place on the organization chart. In order to do this well, you need to lay the groundwork by getting to know the skills and personalities of the people in your workplace.

Shared Mission

It is easier for people to be enthusiastic about a project when they know why they are doing it. If the members of the group have a shared vision and mission, they are more apt to work toward that goal. Especially for large projects or long-term teams, you need to do this work right at the start. If your organization has its own mission statement, you can help the team recognize how their project fits into that larger mission. According to Madison, establishing a broader mission will also help the team break the project into actionable pieces. Each member can see how his or her task is working toward that larger goal.

Working with teams is one of the most effective ways to complete tasks in an organization. However, it can be difficult to cultivate a culture of teamwork. When you carefully develop your teams, you are placing them on the path to achieving their goals.
For teamwork training and workshops, let MentorSF be there for you!

          

When we lookback we can see the future

Posted July 2, 2019 By Frank Strona

Many of us agree that diversity is important in the workplace.

However, in the last few years, we have seen a stronger influence to refocus efforts race, ethnicity and gender. I agree we still have huge gaps in these areas increasing inclusive workplace. We must also not forget to include LGBT as part of this plan. While some LGBTQ folks may also identify as communities impacted by lack of inclusion and equity, some aren’t and are being left out of the training equations. Both as allies and participants.

NBC coverage of 2019 Pride NYCThis came across my desk on Sunday as part of the #Pride50 celebrations in New York and SanFrancisco’s own Pride parade.

As we wrap up #Pride month some may find this ABC post “LOOKBACK: What gay life was like in San Francisco in 1976” interesting; uncomfortable and yes even nostalgic.
It captured some aspects of the time dead on. Some insight is dated due to language and access, but it does a good job of illustrating a moment in time and how gay men were seen. Last week I did my own “lookback” and share about my experience with telling the “mean girls” story and life as a non-traditional looking young gay man is my post “Who would have guessed I was a “prequel” which tied in with some of the basis for last summers TEDx Talk.
What is more interesting to me, is how all these years later, with all the success and growth, how some things haven’t changed….

LOOKBACK: What gay life was like in San Francisco in 1976

          

Boiling Pot Moments

Posted June 28, 2019 By Frank Strona

Boiling Pot Moments

Gleaned this from one of the elists I follow;  CreativeMornings  and thought initially ” I am so not gonna like this.. ” well as with more things I initial dismiss. It was well worth the view and sharing the space to post it!

Ask yourself: am I preserving my life, or am I creating a life preserve?”
Amy Willis, a self-employed management consultant and a mother of three boys, shares her recipe for creating a life worth preserving. In this talk, she encourages us to embrace our “boiling pot moments,” define our values and to rebuild ourselves with intention.

ed.note.. a little sappy but very cute and lots to consider as a take away from it.

Follow CreativeMornings:

https://twitter.com/creativemorning

https://facebook.com/creativemornings

          

Thanks to mobile technology, people can communicate faster than ever, and business can get far more done. But it takes more than just having smartphones for businesses to stay up to speed. You need to find all kinds of ways that your business can use this amazing technology. These are some ways your business’ success with mobile technology can be maximized.

Mobile Banking

If you’re old enough, you should remember a time when the vast majority of your banking had to be done inside an actual bank. This could be a real pain, especially if banking hours overlapped with your work hours. Sophistication in online banking has led to brilliant online banking apps. This has proven to be a boon for business owners as they can deposit checks, review financial data, and analyze spending history, all from their smartphone.

Make Your Website Responsive

When people are checking out your website, they’re probably doing it from their smartphone. Half of all traffic to top websites in the United States comes from mobile users. You need to have your website properly configured for mobile devices. It should be designed with all important sections immediately accessible from the homepage and optimized for maximum speed by compressing images and not using Flash. When customers can use your mobile website without any problems, they’ll be delighted to come back.

Texts for Customers

Communicating with your customers is important, but people tend to find calls from businesses bothersome. Emails can work, but they’re also at risk of getting lost in a pile. Sending out texts about offers and other important developments is simple, will be easily seen by your customers, and isn’t a nuisance. Give your customers a choice about whether or not they’ll receive texts and make it easy to opt out. You should also send out texts only when it’s information you reckon is worth sharing.

Mobile Office Computing

Even if you’re out of the office, you can still run the show. Mobile office computing has evolved so much that business owners can host meetings remotely, track inventory, and much more. While your leadership can’t be replaced by a device, it can be much easier to manage tasks this way. You and other leaders should have your smartphones well supplied with useful apps.

For your business to use mobile technology well, you need to know about every possibility of each technology and how it’ll be able to serve your business. There could be opportunities that you’re squandering because you’re unaware of how mobile technology can fix them. Although these devices might be small and sleek, their abilities are more than meets the eye.

          

Who would have guessed I was a “prequel”

Posted June 22, 2019 By Frank Strona

Who would have guessed I was a “prequel”

Ok – so maybe not a real “prequel”. But I do have something newish to share.

In May 2019 I was able to participate in a training with the folks from Storycenter.org as part of its story collections project as part of California State Library System in California Listens – Digital Storytelling for the 21st Library

This one was held down in lovely Half Moon Bay, in it’s incredibly accessible and high tech new library. For two days, 10 of us, with the help of some incredible folks from the Storycenter.org  and the staff of the library mapped out and created our own stories to share.

It was a diverse group of people with a wide range of experiences, genders, orientations, and ethnicities. I knew it was going to be one of those rare opportunities for me to take a risk. Not only by learning some new techniques but by modeling my own place in society.

We spent the first part of the morning discussing the storytelling process. For those of you that read Engage, you know I am a huge fan of the role that stories play as a place of change, healing, growth, and remembrance.  We then had time to draft out and share our story draft within the group for feedback.

So what prequel story was I going to tell?

As I have said in the past “sometimes you have to risk sharing who you were, to be who you are“; I decided to tell some of the backstories to my growing up gay as it related to my Summer 2018 TEDxProvincetown talk as my training tool.  So with 2019’s Pride Season about to kick off, I thought it was fitting to use it as my celebration to share. Hence my calling it “What You See, Isn’t Always What You Know” my prequel to   TEDxPtown’s “What The Bear Could Teach Goldilocks“.

For those of you who think I do this easily or without fear – think again. Even those of us with an external facade of competence, self-reliance, and self-belief get nervous. It’s wasn’t always easy, nor is it without its problems sharing who we are. But making a place for yourself in a world you don’t see yourself reflected in, is better than waiting for others to do it for you. 

 

The TEDx talk was that initial moment for me. You can read more about the talk itself in its Engage post.

Oh and by the way

 “What The Bear Could Teach Goldilocks

has hit 17,359 views!!!

You read on my TEDxProvincetown experience in my blog post at https://MentorSF.com/Engage/tedx or visit the actual talk at Https://youtu.be/8J-gaUgztjs. 

 

 

 

          

3 Ways to Keep Your Team Members on the Same Page

Posted April 26, 2019 By GuestSpot

Communication among team members is vital for business success. When a team is not communicating well, it will lead to a loss of efficiency and will have other hidden costs. Here are some ways to keep your team cohesive and functioning as a unit.

Frequent Meetings

While many people dread meetings, they are a valuable tool for enhancing communication. CIO says that people are more likely to hone their message when they have to say it in a person’s presence as opposed to online. Employees are more conflict-averse when they are speaking face-to-face, so a meeting is a useful tool to get people working together. Frequent meetings are a means to make sure that people are being heard and have a chance to express their viewpoint. Most people like an audience for their ideas and appreciate the opportunity to share what is on their mind. Also, meetings are a motivating metric to make sure that people are prepared and are doing their work.

Online Project Management

EPMA recommends that every project can have a dedicated site where team members can collaborate, share documents, raise issues, and so on. Online project management provides a centralized depot for your team to communicate with each other. When the information is in one dedicated place, it is easy for the team members to log on and access what they need. Also, this type of online communication means that any idea that is expressed by a team member can be easily seen by everyone, as opposed to having to broach the idea separately to each individual.

Team-Building Events

Having your team get to know each other outside of the work setting can help facilitate their communication on the job. The Bizarro Blog says that when employees have an understanding of who the other employee is as a person, they will be more likely to show them the personal respect that is needed to maintain the proper communication. Scheduling occasional team events outside of the office will help your team learn about each other. Be creative in planning these types of events in order to encourage employees to take the time to join them. Consider scheduling them during work hours to obtain the highest level of attendance.

Teams can communicate well when management sets the right tone. This can be achieved by finding various means to encourage people to not only share their point of view but also do so in a respectful manner.

Is your team in need of some counseling and mentorship? Sign up for a Group Workshop!