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Workplace Wellbeing Tip Number 10

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013
Workplace Wellbeing

Start a choir

A bit like Yoga, being involved in a choir is very “in” at present. There are choirs for all different type of people and groups, especially community ones

The most well known one recently, was created by Jonathan Welch. He started the Choir of Hard Knocks. This was made up of homeless people, and became a worldwide success. I still see “Clarko” around the streets of Melbourne from time to time

The other is Kavisha Mazzella. She is an ARIA winning singer songwriter, who established the Italian Women’s Choir in Fremantle in 1993 as an eight week project. It’s still going today

Choirs are now popping up in workplaces everywhere and here’s why…

  1. Teamwork. Participating in a choir requires people to do different things at the same time, together, without losing focus. It’s all about effectiveness and efficiency
  2. Creativity. If it doesn’t work, then try a different way. As the human voice is different for each of us, the ability to create a new way of doing something, to get a different result, is key
  3. Cooperation. Different to teamwork, this is more about discipline. It’s about being mindful of sticking to the outcome, even when things are not working out the way they should
  4. Everyone can sing at their own level. It’s easy to hide in a choir. Now I didn’t say do a Milli Vanilli and do nothing, but singing softly can be sweeter than singing louder
  5. It still sounds good. For some reason we resonate with others through interaction and sound. When things resonate, at any level, they sound good. So get out there and make a noise


Workplace Wellbeing idea Number 9

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013
Workplace Wellbeing

Do Yoga Classes first thing in the morning
It’s really important that we start the day on an “emotional high”. If we are emotionally high, we perceive the world to be a better place, and work better as a result. It’s all about positive psychology and productivity
Any form of exercise will achieve this. Whether it’s strenuous or not, done in a gym or not, or done in a group or not, is irrelevant. It’s merely a matter of committing to actually doing 15 to 30 minutes every day, to start the day
The form of exercise that I’d like to focus on today is one of the fastest growing exercise programs in the world. Yoga. Once seen as a “hemp smoking hippie escape from reality”, it has now become mainstream for many for the following reasons
Here are 5 things that Yoga does for you
1. Yoga stills the mind. And in doing so, it relaxes the stress relative to the mind. After a Yoga class you will be more relaxed, and yet more focused on your next task
2. Yoga is quiet. There is a sense of calm that comes over you…and the group. The clamor of 21st Century living is gone. Try it outside and connect with nature if you like
3. Yoga is challenging. If you’re my age (between 50 and 60) it’s not that easy to put your left leg behind your right ear, but over time it becomes possible. It’s something that everyone can do
4. Yoga is healing. As the demographic of the world is getting older, I’ll focus on the obvious. Yoga makes us more supple, and able to withstand falls and physical mishaps quicker
5. Yoga is uniting. The very word means “to unite”. It’s all about body mind connection, and the longer you do it, the more you realize that’s it connects you spiritually also
(PS One of your staff members will be willing to do these classes free of charge for you…just ask)

Scatter your workload…actually and not literally

Thursday, August 1st, 2013
Workplace Wellbeing

Since the dawn of (business) time, there has been a push on efficiency, and rightly so. Improved efficiency leads to higher productivity. As a businessman of more than 35 years you won’t get an argument from me about that
Lean Thinking was one of these efficiency processes. It was about having everything at your fingertips, being able to move from left to right is a systematic approach, and have things labeled so you could find them faster, as examples
Unfortunately, it’s not until we implement these ideas, that we find there is a down side. This can leads to sedentary behavior, fatigue, and decreased productivity. We need a balance. What can we do to provide efficiency, but stop people sitting for prolonged periods of time. The answer could be to scatter things around the office so that people have to move
Here are 5 simple ways to scatter your workload
1. Place the printer in a remote location. Often when we print something it is at the end of an activity, so this provides a break between one project and another
2. Place mobile phones in a remote location. This has a dual effect of not having distractions as we work, along with having a clear delineation between office, and out of office calls
3. Implement a “no eating at your desk” policy. I’ve covered this in an earlier blog, but in this case, it’s all about getting up and moving, rather than food appreciation
4. Have a “no internal emails” day. The same with this one as above, but really about moving the legs and body, and building relationships. Remember that “motion creates emotion”
5. Have a coffee break. If you can, go to a local coffee shop outside of the building. This adds the extra element of getting some fresh air