Posts Tagged employee recognition
I ran across some interesting information on the role of niacin, depression, and alcoholism in performance at www.doctoryourself.com. It is well documented that depression and/or alcoholism may negatively affect performance across just about any domain one can perform in. In the treatment of depression and alcoholism there are very effective cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy interventions. In addition, exercise and medication may add additional therapeutic effects. The role of nutrition may have further potentiating influence.
According to this site, Bill W., the founder of AA, was successfully treated for depression with 3,000 mg of niacin a day. Unfortunately, this information has not been widely discussed or published in the media. I would be interested to hear from any of you who have used niacin as a means of treating depression or alcoholism and what your results were. Please let us at MINES know.
Have a day filled with mindfulness,
Robert A. Mines, Ph.D.
CEO & Psychologist
Posted by minesblog in Alcoholism, Anxiety, BizPsych, business psychology, C Level, Centering, CEO, depression, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), Leadership, Managed Behavioral Health Care, Management, Mines and Associates, Psychology of Performance, Stress management, substance abuse, Supervisor, The MINES Team, Tips, Work Performance on September 20, 2010
In his book The Mindful Therapist, Dr. Dan Siegel discusses the role of mirror neurons in actions that have a perceived intention behind them. He stated that the mirror neurons function as a bridge between sensory input and motor output that allows us to mirror the behavior we see someone else enact (p.36). Practically this means that when we see someone drinking from a glass, the mirror neurons become activated (firing off electrical currents called an action potential). If we were to drink from the same glass, the same specific neurons that fired when we saw someone else drinking also become activated. Dr. Siegel said “We see a behavior and get ready to imitate it,” (p.36).
The implications of this line of research are significant for performance. For example, if you watch a movie with alcohol being consumed and you are in recovery, now you have internal neuronal firing similar to drinking the alcohol yourself. Now you have to override the neuronal firing with “white-knuckling it,” or better yet with mindful awareness, or you will increase your probabilities of a relapse.
The upside of this research is that seeing others perform a behavior successfully – mentally rehearsing the image – would theoretically strengthen the neuronal firing and increase the probabilities that you will execute the behavior successfully. This concept is foundational to performance coaching. As coaches, therapists, and bosses we need to think about our current training techniques and how they incorporate watching, rehearsing, and doing as part of the sequence.
Have a day filled with Mindfulness,
Robert A. Mines, Ph.D.
CEO & Psychologist
MINES and Associates
Posted by minesblog in Alcoholism, Anxiety, BizPsych, business psychology, C Level, CEO, education, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), Leadership, Management, Mines and Associates, Psychology of Performance, Stress management, substance abuse, Supervisor, The MINES Team, Tips, Work Performance on July 22, 2010
How effective are your various business units?
What are your performance indicators?
Do each of your employees get held accountable for the results or just the managers?
All businesses and organizations get to address these questions and do their best to implement solutions depending on the answers. Elliot Jacques and Stephen Clement wrote an especially helpful book, Executive Leadership, which addresses these questions and many more. This posting will address a few of the many nuggets in their book.
One of the recurring BizPsych questions we get to answer and intervene on relates to individual differences in performance. Jacques and Clement argue that role theory accounts for performance more than individual differences such as personality. They add that people perform to their role in very predictable ways. There is a significant amount of social psychology research to support this. Yet in many businesses, individual personality characteristics are looked at for explanatory hypotheses related to performance over clarity of role. Role clarity for a manager – from Jacques and Clements point of view – would include an adequate organizational design, an assumption that the manager has the knowledge, skills, commitment, values of the organization, and cognitive complexity to do the functions of the role. In the role of manager they would have formal accountability for results and authority to allocate resources including staff, budget, and decision capability related to the complexity of the tasks in their role. In addition, they have the interpersonal skills to develop a team of people who think they add value as a manager and are enthusiastic about accomplishing the goals of the business unit. The role clarity for a manager includes organizational support to veto an appointment (their manager has the authority to fire the employee if no other suitable position can be found), decide task assignment, decide personal effectiveness and merit awards, and decide to initiate removal from a role.
If the above conditions are satisfied, Jacques and Clements would predict a higher performance level from that business unit versus those that have role confusion. In our BizPsych division we encounter organization after organization that are addressing these topics in their design. If it comes to dealing with human performance, we are all in continuous recalibration mode.
Have a day filled with loving kindness,
Robert A. Mines, Ph.D.
CEO & Psychologist
Posted by minesblog in Alcoholism, Anxiety, BizPsych, business psychology, C Level, CEO, depression, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), Leadership, Managed Behavioral Health Care, Management, Mines and Associates, Psychology of Performance, Stress management, Supervisor, Uncategorized, Work Performance on May 19, 2010
In BizPsych we often run into CEO’s, VP’s, Managers, and Supervisors who have performance problems related to “wearing too many hats”. Elliot Jacques’ work described a variety of systems and organizational design problems that resulted in inefficiencies, interpersonal problems, bottlenecks, and other performance issues. When a person is “collapsed down” or in the weeds, which means they are below their role in a business, higher-priority strategic thinking, decisions or actions can be neglected or result in outright failure. Wearing multiple hats means that none of the roles assigned to that person will get full-time attention. In smaller businesses this may be a “sweat equity” issue, however, the results are still the same. I encourage you to look at your position, how many roles do you have and what is the performance result?
Have a day filled with Equanimity
Robert A. Mines, Ph.D.
CEO & Psychologist
As a business psychology firm, we get to consult and intervene with top performers in the C-Suite whose performance has dropped. There are many factors related to the performance drop. For this blog I am addressing those at the C level who are using enough alcohol that it affects their performance in overt and subtle ways. More than two drinks a day puts a person at risk for health and behavioral problems. It is not uncommon for one a C level person to get referred to us who is drinking 4-8 oz of alcohol per day and they report that they do not have a problem. How this shows up at work comes in the form of “fuzzy thinking”, just not as sharp as they used to be; missed deadlines (which at this level can be disasterous for the company; health markers deteriorting, which creates succession concerns; interpersonal behavior becomes unskillful or unwholesome such as kissing employees who do not want to be kissed, irritable outbursts, avoidance of difficult decisions; behavioral risks such as driving while under the influence, emabarrassing the organization at public functions. The costs to the company and the individual can be enormous. The good news is that the majority of alcoholics who are employed can get into treatment, return to sobriety and regain their previous level of performance. The motivation to get into recovery is provided by the employer requiring them to get help or lose their job. We have seen many successes. If you think you may fit any of these descriptions please contact your employee assistance program or if you do not have one, call us, we will help you get treatment.
Remember, I like you.
Robert A. Mines, Ph.D.
CEO & Psychologist
Mines and Associates
Some of us don’t make any resolutions because of fear they won’t be kept. Others make new ones every year and follow them like clockwork. Most of us are somewhere in between. No matter what group you belong to, here is a top ten list of New Years Resolutions that I discovered on About.com
1. Spend More Time with Family and Friends
Recent polls conducted by General Nutrition Centers, Quicken, and others shows that more than 50% of Americans vow to appreciate loved ones and spend more time with family and friends this year. Make plans to meet up with friends for an evening of comaraderie at a favorite restaurant or take the family to a popular place for family fun. Work shouldn’t always come first!
2. Fit in Fitness
The evidence is in for fitness. Regular exercise has been associated with more health benefits than anything else known to man. Studies show that it reduces the risk of some cancers, increases longevity, helps achieve and maintain weight loss, enhances mood, lowers blood pressure, and even improves arthritis. In short, exercise keeps you healthy and makes you look and feel better.
3. Tame the Bulge
Over 66 percent of adult Americans are considered overweight or obese by recent studies, so it is not surprising to find that weight loss is one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions. Setting reasonable goals and staying focused are the two most important factors in sticking with a weight loss program, and the key to success for those millions of Americans who made a New Year’s commitment to shed extra pounds.
4. Quit Smoking
If you have resolved to make this the year that you stamp out your smoking habit, over-the-counter availability of nicotine replacement therapy now provides easier access to proven quit-smoking aids. Even if you’ve tried to quit before and failed, don’t let it get you down. On average, smokers try about four times before they quit for good. Start enjoying the rest of your smoke-free life! Locally, there are a variety of free support services, hotlines and smoking cessation classes to help you kick the smoking habit.
5. Enjoy Life More
Given the hectic, stressful lifestyles of millions of Americans, it is no wonder that “enjoying life more” has become a popular resolution in recent years. It’s an important step to a happier and healthier you! Consider a holistic healing centers for products designed to bring balance to your body, mind and soul. Or just get out and try something new! Take up a new hobby or try your hand at skiing. Go to a theater performance, or head to the local spa.
6. Quit Drinking
While many people use the New Year as an incentive to finally stop drinking, most are not equipped to make such a drastic lifestyle change all at once. Many heavy drinkers fail to quit cold turkey but do much better when they taper gradually, or even learn to moderate their drinking. If you have decided that you want to stop drinking, there is a world of help and support available. There are also a number of treatment-based programs, as well as support groups for families of alcoholics.
7. Get Out of Debt
Was money a big source of stress in your life last year? Join the millions of Americans who have resolved to spend this year getting a handle on their finances. It’s a promise that will repay itself many times over in the year ahead.
8. Learn Something New
Have you vowed to make this year the year to learn something new? Perhaps you are considering a career change, want to learn a new language, or just how to fix your computer? Whether you take a course or read a book, you’ll find education to be one of the easiest, most motivating New Year’s resolutions to keep. Local YMCA’s offer great recreational training for beginners of all ages. Most local colleges and universities offer distance and adult education programs.
9. Help Others
A popular, non-selfish New Year’s resolution, volunteerism can take many forms. Whether you choose to spend time helping out at your local library, mentoring a child, or building a house, there are many nonprofit volunteer organizations that could really use your help. Or if your time is really in short supply, maybe you can at least find it in you to donate the furniture, clothing and other household items that you no longer need, rather than leaving them out by the curb to fill up our landfills.
10. Get Organized
On just about every New Year resolution top ten list, organization can be a very reasonable goal. Whether you want your home organized enough that you can invite someone over on a whim, or your office organized enough that you can find the stapler when you need it, these tips and resources should get you started on the way to a more organized life.
Posted by minesblog in Anxiety, BizPsych, business psychology, CEO, education, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), Leadership, Managed Behavioral Health Care, Management, Meditation, Mines and Associates, Psychology of Performance, Stress management, Supervisor, The MINES Team, Tips, Work Performance on December 29, 2009
As the new year approaches, this is often a time for people and organizations to review their performanace in the past year. How did you do compared to the goals you set? What did you do? What did you accomplish? What factors are interdependent with your success? What factors were interdependent with under performance or failure? What psychological autopsy do you need to do on the outcomes that were less than optimal as well as the successes? This might include a review of your assumptions, skills, systems, strategies, tactics and the “messiness” factors associated with resources, people, external events, internal events, resiliency and execution. The adherence and relapse information is also relevant on this point. The outcome is to learn what you can and move on in 2010 with a higher probability of success. Where your mind goes, the energy goes…so set goals that are worthy of your attention and your organization’s attention.
Have a Happy New Year filled with prosperity, optimal health and equanimity.
Robert A. Mines, Ph.D.
CEO & Psychologist
Going from being a full-time student to being a full-time employee has been quite the transition over the past couple of months. With graduation just around the corner, I am now beginning to see that my life is headed for some big changes. While school felt like a full-time job, classes were spread out and my schedule was far more flexible. Now that Monday through Friday is fully scheduled, I have realized that balancing work and life is feeling more important than ever. Finding time for family, friends, and relaxation is not always easy, but the good news is that it’s possible. The following article from http://topten.org/public/BI/BI103.html presents some helpful steps when it comes to finding some middle ground between work and personal life.
There is no single formula for attaining a balanced life. It is a personal decision how one combines their career, spouse/significant other, children, friends and self into an integrated whole. The key is to develop creative solutions as you approach the challenges of balancing the responsibilities and joys of your multiple roles. Some of the same skills and strategies you use at work such as planning, organizing, communicating, setting limits and delegating can be used effectively on the home-front for achieving a satisfying, fulfilling well-balanced life both personally and professionally.
1. BUILD A SUPPORT NETWORK
Ask for help and allow yourself to be helped and contributed to. Get your children involved–work together as a team. Recruit friends, family, neighbors, bosses, work colleagues, etc. and ask for their support. Create back-up and emergency plans; always have a contingency.
2. LET GO OF GUILT
Guilt is one of the greatest wastes of emotional energy. It causes you to become immobilized in the present because you are dwelling on the past. Guilt can be very debilitating. By introducing logic to help counter-balance the guilt you can stay better on course.
3. ESTABLISH LIMITS AND BOUNDARIES
Boundaries are an imaginary line of protection that you draw around yourself. They are about protecting you from other people’s actions. Determine for yourself what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior from other people. Boundaries and limits define how you take charge of your time and space and get in touch with your feelings. They express the extent of your responsibilities and power and show others what you are willing to do or accept. Without limits it’s difficult to say “no”.
4. DETERMINE YOUR OWN STANDARDS
Get rid of the notion of being a perfectionist. Wean yourself off it by making compromises–figure out where the best places to make the compromises are without short-changing yourself, your spouse, your children, your boss, etc. Live by your own standards rather than someone else’s. Standards are about YOU and refer to the behavior and actions you are willing to hold yourself to.
5. CREATE TIME FOR YOURSELF
Being a good parent, partner and professional means being good to yourself first. Use your mind to make some affirmations for yourself. Find ways to relax, relieve tension and minimize stress. Taking some time off for yourself will not only benefit you, but it will benefit your family tremendously!
6. GET ORGANIZED.
Set priorities, work smarter not harder, delegate (and really let go!). Create lists and save them for re-use. Keep a main calendar centrally located to post everyone’s activities.
7. BE FLEXIBLE
Forgive yourself when things don’t get done. Understand that with children things change at a moment’s notice. Be ready and willing to assume responsibility for any of the tasks that need to get done at any time. Never get too comfortable, because as soon as you seem to get things under control, they change! Also, realize that in order to achieve success many women have had to give up their original goals and substitute new ones with different but equal challenges. Negotiate for what you need.
8. ENJOY QUALITY FAMILY TIME
Spend quality/focused time with your family. Give them your full attention. Develop rituals you can all look forward to. Create relationships with your spouse and children that are not incidental but rather instumental to your success.
9. FIND RELIABLE CHILD CARE
Leave your kids in capable hands. Find someone you feel comfortable and confident in. If you’re feeling ambivalent about working or about leaving your child, etc. do not show it–your child (at any age) will pick right up on it. Feel proud when you’ve found someone who fits into your needs. Get involved with your child’s care providers by communicating frequently and observing interactions between caregiver and your child.
10. ACHIEVE AN INTEGRATED LIFE
Keep things in perspective. Create harmony in your life–a mixture of work, family and friends. Remember, there is no single formula for balance. It is a personal decision how one combines spouse, children and career.
About the Submitter
This piece was originally submitted by Natalie A. Gahrmann, M.A., Success Coach and Workshop/Seminar Leader, who can be reached at email@example.com, or visited on the web. Natalie A. Gahrmann wants you to know: N-R-G Coaching Associates was founded to guide
professionals who have a career plus kids in creating a life that is more balanced, fulfilling, satisfying and successful. We are dedicated to helping working parents achieve work/life mastery. To subscribe to a free weekly newsletter for working parents, send a blank email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hello MINES bloggers. My name is Sarah Kinnel and I’m the new Marketing Administrative Assistant. I have found an interesting and helpful article that I wanted to share with all of you. Stress in the workplace is something all of us deal with on a daily basis—the good news is there are many ways to cope with feeling overwhelmed. The following article entitled Stress at Work: How to Reduce and Manage Job and Workplace Stress focuses on key points that both employees and managers can implement in order to better communicate with one another. The article also brings light to self-awareness and how it can help aid in feeling more comfortable and relaxed, both in the office and life in general. I have included the beginning of the article here, and if you’d like to read more please visit http://www.helpguide.org/mental/work_stress_management.htm
Stress at Work
How to Reduce and Manage Job and Workplace Stress
In this difficult economy, you may find it harder than ever to cope with challenges on the job. Both the stress we take with us when we go to work and the stress that awaits us on the job are on the rise – and employers, managers, and workers all feel the added pressure. While some stress is a normal part of life, excessive stress interferes with your productivity and reduces your physical and emotional health, so it’s important to find ways to keep it under control. Fortunately, there is a lot that you can do to manage and reduce stress at work.
In This Article:
- Coping with work stress
- Warning signs
- Taking care of yourself
- Prioritizing and organizing
- Improving emotional intelligence
- Breaking bad habits
- What managers or employers can do
- Related links
Coping with work stress in today’s uncertain climate
For workers everywhere, the troubled economy may feel like an emotional roller coaster. “Layoffs” and “budget cuts” have become bywords in the workplace, and the result is increased fear, uncertainty, and higher levels of stress. Since job and workplace stress grow in times of economic crisis, it’s important to learn new and better ways of coping with the pressure. The ability to manage stress in the workplace can make the difference between success or failure on the job. Your emotions are contagious, and stress has an impact on the quality of your interactions with others. The better you are at managing your own stress, the more you’ll positively affect those around you and the less other people’s stress will negatively affect you.
You can learn how to manage job stress
There are a variety of steps you can take to reduce both your overall stress levels and the stress you find on the job and in the workplace. These include:
- Taking responsibility for improving your physical and emotional well-being.
- Avoiding pitfalls by identifying knee jerk habits and negative attitudes that add to the stress you experience at work.
- Learning better communication skills to ease and improve your relationships with management and coworkers.
Warning signs of excessive stress at work
When people feel overwhelmed, they lose confidence and become irritable or withdrawn, making them less productive and effective and their work less rewarding. If the warning signs of work stress go unattended, they can lead to bigger problems. Beyond interfering with job performance and satisfaction, chronic or intense stress can also lead to physical and emotional health problems.
Signs and symptoms of excessive job and workplace stress
Common causes of excessive workplace stress
- Fear of layoffs
- Increased demands for overtime due to staff cutbacks
- Pressure to perform to meet rising expectations but with no increase in job satisfaction
- Pressure to work at optimum levels – all the time!
Marketing Adminstrative Assistant
(CNN) — If you’re working in a stressful environment, you and your colleagues may be communicating tension to one another without even realizing it.
Effects shown in the study may help people understand situations such as stressful offices, researchers said.
A new study published in the online journal PLoS One reveals changes in brain activity when people are exposed to sweat from others who have been in a stressful situation. Researchers found that people may become more alert to potential threats when inhaling this “stress” sweat.
“The results suggest that we can detect others’ stress just by breathing in their sweat,” said Lilianne Mujica-Parodi, assistant professor of biomedical engineering at Stony Brook University in New York and lead author of the study, in an e-mail.
Researchers took sweat samples from 144 people who had put themselves in the somewhat stressful situation of tandem skydiving for the first time. Each participant was strapped to an expert skydiver, and each pair jumped from 13,000 feet. Control samples were taken from people who had run on a treadmill.