When things suck a little, improve your collaborative culture

Do you care about your organization’s performance and productivity? I’m guessing “Yes”! Do you know how much of it is reliant on how well people “play nice together”?

Sometimes, when we’ve got our head down, doing the work, we forget to look up and at each other. And when we do, it can feel a little irritating. (Of course it’s not you!)

Here’s a quick video about why we should talk. Share it with those you know that also value leadership development and performance.

And then, let’s talk. 🙂

The most successful leaders are not infallible when faced with someone who “drives them crazy!” Monique Caissie’s corporate keynote or training called “CAN’T WE JUST GET ALONG?: How To Go From Conflict To Collaboration” is appreciated by all who would like more control over their professional and personal lives. Monique draws from 30 years of crisis intervention work to help others increase their confidence to feel more heard, respected and happier. 





Why Investing In Communications Training Matters

While networking, I asked an HR professional of a mid-sized company (150 employees) when would she hire a communications expert like me to come and train her employees. She told me she never has because there’s no budget. Then she added that all training budgets were for technical training and only the C-suite folks do retreats, team building and leadership development.


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It’s Not Easy Dealing With The Holiday Scrooge At Work

workplace scrooge(As published in Huffington Post)

Susan was a fellow office manager. She was given a budget to decorate for Christmas and as she transformed our offices with green and tinsel, she also loudly voiced what a waste of time and money this was. To her, Christmas was about family – not work. The daily snippy comments were annoying.
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3 Reasons To Stop Being So Damn Collaborative

stop collaborating(Published in Huffington Post)

When we think of the best teams, many people aim for collaboration as the most desirable trait in the members and the leaders. While a collaborative approach targets the best win/win scenario that everyone can hope for, there are times where leaders need to step away and adopt a more directive stance.

If we are naturally collaborative, we may have a hard time taking over and controlling the situation.

Here are 3 times when we need to be aware that collaboration is not always the panacea the Buddhists monks may be alluding to. Continue reading

Are You Lying To Yourself About Employee Engagement?

Employee EngagementSo you think you are observant. Everyone seems to be getting along. After all, they come to work everyday and smile when you walk by. If people weren’t communicating well, you’d know! Right?

Today, I decided to do a quick video to share my thoughts on this.


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Is That Your Problem?

Look closerSmart leaders don’t only delegate to others, they have a habit of quickly analyzing each situation as it crosses their desk.  We need to stop and ask ourselves if that is really our problem to solve.
Recently, I was coaching someone who is being groomed for a leadership position in her organization. She was telling me about this older man who keeps speaking to her about problems as though she should be fixing them. She tends to react as though it is her responsibility. She now realizes that she has to discern between what is her responsibility and when it is appropriate to delegate. Continue reading

Rude or not rude? That is the question!

difficult and rudePublished in Huffington Post.

This week, I was speaking to someone who had seen me speak on conflict styles and called saying she needed my services.  Let’s call her Alice. She was telling me about (let’s call her) Cindy, whom she managed and was causing a lot of problems in the organization. Coaching someone like Cindy, who seems convinced that everyone around her is the enemy, is a very difficult thing to do. Here’s what happened in one of the incidences that Alice related to me. Continue reading

3 Proven Practices to Counteract Second Hand Negativity

staying positive(Published on Huffington Post) Have you ever been around someone who has difficulty letting go of old events or who dramatically points out everything that can go wrong? Yeah, me too! We might think they sound angry, impatient or insecure.

When this person is someone we have to be in close proximity with for long periods of time, this negativity can distract us and affect our ability to think clearly, make solid decisions or feel productive. Even our personal well-being can be compromised if the exposure is too frequent or long. Their negativity affects us just like someone smoking beside us will affect our lungs.  Continue reading

Managing Their Expectations

Published on Huffington Post

managing customer expectationsI was consulting for a luxury car dealership not knowing what to expect. I’m one of those people who think “just get me from point A to point B – fancy hubcaps won’t make it drive better”. I drive an economical car and don’t really lean towards branding. I wondered if that belief would be swayed at this first visit. Here’s what happened. Continue reading

How Leaders Can Improve Teamwork And Build Trust


Published on Huffington Post

Huffington Post - How Leaders Can Improve Teamwork And Build TrustHave you ever worked in a group? In my academic studies, I found it interesting that the concept of Storm and Stress could be found in both the earlier studies of task group conflicts and family dynamics.

Anyone who has been around a touchy adolescent girl and her mother when they trigger each other can easily spot the extremes of emotion occasionally getting expressed. Similarly, this tension can appear in immature groups. After a time of forming, leadership gets questioned and conflict can erupt with similar extremes of emotions, especially when the group has a diversity of personality or opinions. Conflict is a normal part of the growing pains of a group. Continue reading