Weekly Pulse by William Meller | Week 02, 2022

Weekly Pulse is a content curation and highlights from readings, books, videos, podcasts, insights, ramblings and other interesting things I discovered and digested during the last week.

In the end of this page, you will be able to subscribe for the Weekly Pulse by William Meller Newsletter and can receive more findings like that in your Email.

So, let's go with some discoveries from the week!

#1 - How to Retrain Your Frazzled Brain and Find Your Focus Again
#2 - Revisiting Agile Teams After an Abrupt Shift to Remote
#3 - What Children Lose When Their Brains Develop Too Fast
#4 - If You Encounter Any of These “Monster” Managers … Run
#5 - The Project Economy Has Arrived
#6 - The Spotlight Effect and Social Anxiety
#7 - Collaboration Tools Are Managers' New Best Friends
#8 - Book Notes: Quiet Leadership - David Rock


How to Retrain Your Frazzled Brain and Find Your Focus Again

Source: The Guardian
Author: Eleanor Morgan
Year: 2021
 
Summary: This article is for you that find it harder than ever to concentrate during the pandemic, where the focus just make it impossible to concentrate in just one thing, like a book, your work, cleaning or even cooking something. Eleanor Morgan suggest some exercises to help your brain come back to reality.

3 Highlights:

"... We can learn to focus better, but we need to think about attention differently. It is not something we can just choose to do. We have to train the brain like a muscle. Specifically, with short bursts of daily exercises..."

"... Stress is one of the biggest obstacles to focusing, says Dr Amishi Jha. In a high-alert state, we often start ruminating and catastrophizing. We get stuck in “loops of doom” or imagined scenarios. This mode impacts our working memory..."

"... After a fortnight of doing the exercises, I notice that being able to carve a little sliver of space between myself and the contents of my mind means I am able to divert my attention back to what I need to do more easily..."



Revisiting Agile Teams After an Abrupt Shift to Remote

Source: McKinsey
Author: Santiago Comella-Dorda, Lavkesh Garg, Suman Thareja, and Belkis Vasquez-McCall
Year: 2020

Summary: As organizations adapt to the pandemic, their agile teams can be a real source of competitive advantage. Agile teams are typically well suited to periods of disruption, given their ability to adapt to fast-changing priorities and digitization. But the abrupt shift to remote working in response to the coronavirus has challenged the typical approach to managing agile teams, right?

3 Highlights:

"... If the necessary technology is in place, a talented remote team can deliver just as much value as co-located teams..."

"... Teams already operating remotely before the crisis are less likely to struggle, given their ability to handle ambiguity without losing focus and to concentrate on outcomes over processes..."

"... Working in isolation is hard for any person, but particularly for agile teams accustomed to face-to-face communication and frequent interpersonal engagement. Multitasking and home-based distractions also take a toll, depending on how things are set up..."
 


What Children Lose When Their Brains Develop Too Fast

Source: The Wall Street Journal
Author: Alison Gopnik
Year: 2021

Summary: Adverse early experiences can make young minds inflexible, while a carefree childhood has clear cognitive benefits. Brains start out being more plastic, more open to experience, better at learning. But how would witnessing a traumatic event when you’re 5 years old put you at risk for cancer when you’re 50? Just how do early experiences shape development?

3 Highlights:

"... Children with more adverse childhood experiences are more likely to suffer from anxiety, depression or addiction as adults, and they have a higher risk of cancer and heart disease..."

"... The brain gets thicker in infancy, for instance, and then thins out in adolescence..."

"... The most important part of caring for young children is in some ways the easiest. Loving your children and giving them space to learn and explore is more important than crafting a particular curriculum..."



If You Encounter Any of These “Monster” Managers … Run

Source: Harvard Business Review
Author: Sulagna Misra
Year: 2021

Summary: In this (funny) article we are going to meet these managers: the ghost, the zombie, the werewolf, the vampire and Sauron, the eye that sees all. If you find yourself dealing with one of these monster managers on the daily, here are some tips on how to fight them off.

3 Highlights:

"... No, your manager is not actually haunting your office. The truth is, this type of manager might just not be that interested in being a leader..."

"... The mummy is typically brand new to being the boss. They were promoted last week, and suddenly they’re wearing new clothes, they smell different, and they have a fancy new tomboffice..."

"... When you are on the other side of one of their outbursts, try to stay calm and remind yourself that their temper has nothing to do with you..."



The Project Economy Has Arrived

Source: Harvard Business Review
Author: Antonio Nieto-Rodriguez
Year: 2021

Summary: Projects have displaced operations as the economic engine of our times, but despite this shift, many leaders still undervalue projects and project management. By 2027, 88 million people are likely to be working in project management, and the value of project-oriented economic activity will have reached $20 trillion.

3 Highlights:

"... Agile and traditional project management aren’t at war with each other. In a change-driven world, companies can’t apply just one methodology to all their projects..."

"... This transformation to a project economy will have profound organizational and cultural consequences. The problem is, many leaders still don’t appreciate the value of projects and write them off as a waste of time..."

"... By executing our projects better, we’ll be able to provide trillions of dollars’ worth of additional benefits to the world...."



Collaboration Tools Are Managers' New Best Friends

Source: William Meller - New article

Summary: Collaboration tools can give workers quick answers to questions, speed decision-making, and improve communications being the managers' new best friends, becoming a vital element of the modern workplace. And because the modern workplace do not have a "place" at all, we need to adopt a well-organized, central space where all the project documentation and communication lives. 

3 Highlights:

"... The potential of online collaboration tools is as big in enterprises as it has been in the consumer realm..."

"... Getting collaboration right promises tremendous benefits: a unified face to customers, faster internal decision-making, reduced costs through shared resources, and the development of more innovative products...."

"... There's no new normal coming. Today’s workplace, is the new normal...."



The Spotlight Effect and Social Anxiety

Source: William Meller - New article

Summary: The spotlight effect is the phenomenon in which people tend to believe they are being noticed more than they really are, being that one is constantly in the center of one's own world. So while we’re out here worrying about what others are noticing about us, in reality, most of them aren’t. 

3 Highlights:

"... Essentially, whenever we think about what other people think about us, we tend to overestimate how likely they are to notice things that we do..."

"... This is because most people are too preoccupied thinking about themselves or something that they are doing. If we’re in the same calculus class, there is a very small chance that I’m going to notice what shirt you’re wearing..."

"... The spotlight effect causes us to have an exaggerated view of our own significance to the people around us...."



Book Notes: Quiet Leadership - David Rock

Source: William Meller - Book Notes

Managers are default programmed to solve problems. That’s what they are paid to do (or at least someone told they that). And that is how they see themselves, at a subconscious level. So, when an employee comes with a problem, the manager start the solution model, giving ideas and solutions for this problem. The employee walks out with the manager’s solution and the manager feels great.

David Rock has proven, supported by neuroscience, that the secret to leading people (and living and working with them) is found in the space between their ears, "If people are being paid to think," he writes, "isn't it time the business world found out the thing doing the work, the brain, is all about?"




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