Dream Catalyst

Building Teams

Leaders Learn. And Learning Helps Us Lead Better.

Learning has been an activity I pursue relentlessly ever since I started my own business. It has proved to serve me well not only in business, but also being recognised as a Mentor of Future Talents.

I firmly believe in keeping my mind sharp as I guide business leaders and clients in creating the business culture that lead their companies to greatness.

The last 8 months, I have not only learned, but also shared consistently on LinkedIn to value create for my network.

Here are a recap of the three categories of topics on learning.

1. Everyone of us learn differently. In these three posts, I share how I learn.

·      Sharpen the Saw: As a SkillsFuture Fellowship Awardee, I lead by example through lifelong learning.

·      Learning: Beyond just reading books.

·      Mentors: Getting a mentor is probably the best investment for me.

2. Here are my three key learnings from sharing more consistently on LinkedIn.

·      Learning #1: It’s not about you; focus on the audience instead.

·      Learning #2: You do not need inspiration to post often. You need more than inspiration.

·      Learning #3: No work, even if it’s something you’re passionate about is 100% fun.

3. Learning through experience is probably the most valuable.

·      Misunderstood: I learned there is no need to be understood all the time.

·      Think differently: How you can learn to change your perspectives.

·      Magical words: How this company learned these magical words to transform their culture.

How has learning helped transformed the way you lead your organisation?

The first step in transforming the culture of your business is by learning. Learning must go beyond reading, which is largely at the cognitive level. It also involves training which can help change the way your team perform. Even more effective would be to provide coaching or mentoring because this is where it helps in supporting contributory behaviours.

We can further reinforce your team’s learning through our consultancy on Systems and Processes. Contact us to find out more.

Strategies on Business Culture

In a Harvard Business Review article, Michael Porter said this:

“the essence of strategy is choosing a unique and valuable position rooted in systems of activities that are much more difficult to match.”

While strategies in most aspects of business might be easy to copy; one that is particularly difficult to match is culture.

Which is why some of the businesses I share in my posts on business culture strategies have not only a culture that is difficult to copy, they also have superior performance compared to their peers.

Here are some of the best examples of business culture strategies:

Business Culture goes beyond staff training: in this post, I share how one difference in attitude between two staff makes a whole lot of difference in customer experience.

How can your business attract the best possible team: in this post, I share how having a positive work culture can help you in attracting the best employees.

Invest in professional development of your managers: In the UK, they have a standard for the development of people called Investors In People. I share why investing in the professional development of your managers, if done properly, will help your business reap benefits manifold.

Does having happier workers lead to better performance: Arguably, having happier workers does lead to better performance. In this post, I share some evidences from my working with clients.

The single most common challenge faced by business leaders when creating the company’s desired culture: I get many enquiries from business leaders about creating their company’s desired culture. In this post, I share the number 1 challenge faced by them.

“Only complaints; not compliments”: It is very much a “Singaporean” thing, where we complain more than we compliment. In this post, I share a case study on how that affects the staff morale of your staff in real life.

Want a strategy that is difficult to match?

Your business culture is one aspect that is truly difficult to copy by your competitors. Having the right business culture will certainly help your business perform better than the competition.

If training and branding exercises haven’t given your business the lasting results it deserves, then it is time to examine how we can help your team formulate strategies for your business culture.

I did not become a customer

I became a fan. 🤩

Sales people can learn a thing or two from her.

She showed me the products in the store at Bynd Artisan.  

She shared with me some recommended options.

When I mentioned I’d like to take photo of her for my post, she asked:

“Is the company’s logo visible? Because that would help to publicize the company.”

Grace isn’t the owner.

She isn’t just a sales person.

She is an ambassador.

Her enthusiasm and pride in her work certainly contributes to a progress business culture.

From “hiring anyone with hands and legs”

To “becoming the ‘Ivy League’ in their sector”.

It involves more than just branding and training.

It is with this change in mindset that the client was able to:

💼 transform their hiring practices
💪 hire people who give their best
📈 have their hiring practices support their exponential growth

That said, it wasn’t easy to convince them in the beginning.

Through our Pulse Conversation, they get to hear feedback from the ground up.

Through our series of workshops, that’s when we translate vision into reality.

This is how I work with clients to help them make sustainable changes through transforming their business culture.

👉 If I can help you with your business culture,
📧 Send me a message and let’s have a conversation.

Want to assemble a dream team?

This isn’t a HR post.

It’s about how your business can attract the best possible team by designing the desired culture.

First, what’s a work culture?

Define: Work culture refers to the beliefs, thought processes, attitudes of the employees, ideologies, and principles of the organisation.

Who sets the work culture?

Fact: For most of my clients, it’s the management that sets the tone for the culture.

How has it changed over the years?

⬅ Past: Good employees stay on in spite of culture, for the sake of their livelihood.

🕰 Now: If a company does not keep up with the increasingly loud call for a positive work culture, then attracting the dream team would be difficult.

Remember “A positive work culture will lead to significant benefits for employers, employees, customers, as well as your bottom line.”

200 scientific studies on 275,000 people.

It’s been shown.

Happy workers have:

📈 Higher levels of productivity
💰 Produced higher sales
👍 Performed better at leadership positions
🤒 Taken less sick days
😊 Less tendency to quit

Having the right initiatives to build a happier workplace isn’t only smart.

It’s also great for business growth in the long run.

A coaching client was let go

The company then decided.

To give him another opportunity.

But he would have to accept a lower position.

Sure, it wasn’t easy for him to go back to an environment where he used to hold a higher position.

But he was determined to succeed at this second opportunity.

When his bosses recognised his determination, they were willing to invest in coaching sessions for his professional development.

Now, he’ been promoted and doing well.

All because he embraced a growth mindset by:

👍 Handing feedback positively
👈 Understanding the past doesn’t determine the future
✌ Turning a crisis into an opportunity



Only Complaints

We, as Singaporeans, are known to complain.

I recently left a review on Facebook about a cafe.

Upon my return visit, I asked the supervisor if the management gave him the feedback.

To that, he replied: “only feedback complaints; not compliments.”

When I showed him the post, where I share my compliments about him on the cafe’s Facebook Page, his face lit up!

As a manager, do you only share complaints or do you highlight compliments too?

By sharing compliments, we affirm the great work of our people.

Because that works wonders for staff morale and engagement too!

Non-Negotiable as a Leader

At a recent Strategy Meeting with a group of leaders,

I invited them to share ↘️

What they think are non-negotiable as a leader.

Interestingly, one of them said: “Leaders with fixed mindset.”

I cannot agree more.

I once had to work with a manager with a fixed mindset.

Then I had the opportunity to work with one with a growth mindset.

He was:

💡open to ideas,
👀 willing to explore opportunities
👂 pay attention to feedback

With him, the team is more engaged and our performance increased, which in turn contributed to the company’s profitability.

In today’s context, we cannot afford to embrace a fixed mindset.

Or else, the performance and profitability of our businesses will also be fixed.

Intentional and Integrative

This afternoon was the perfect way to end the week.

Sharing with a group of human resources representatives from the Small and Medium-sized Enterprises.

That culture building isn’t expensive.

But if done wrongly will be very expensive.

What are your thoughts about the cost of culture building in your organization?

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