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Mountain range

HOW TO GET SOFT INTEL TO GAUGE PERFORMANCE

How am I doing?

This is a question that many people are asking themselves at the moment. 

There are many who are wanting to feel that progress is being maintained while we beaver away at home in terms of career, relationship building and general acknowledgement that what they are doing meets or exceeds expectation. The current way of working is making us feel blind. Why?

“Because we cant see, feel and sense the intelligence we need, and have used in the past, and be reasonably confident, that the decisions we make will give us progress we are yearning”

People succeed from learning from themselves, watching others and receiving data points. Computer generated data we can get but its the human and personal interactions where we seek our gold. In our home offices or limited numbers of people in our offices we are missing our intelligence sources. This making us nervous, more stressed and in the process limiting us to make choices.

There are different ways to approach this. the Points below are just a few you could consider and have ago with. 

How to get your soft intel?

Spy networks — seek out the opportunities to communicate with trusted advisors, mentors and or colleagues in the business. The informal chats that you may have had in the office are hard to come by when you have to ‘book’ a time on a video call. However phone calls work equally well and you could combine that with a walk to again add some informality.

Gossip — ‘Coffee’ and ‘Friday chat’ calls can seem one too many but you does allow you to catch up on the what is happening in and outside work. Some ban work in these chats but there is always the chat box if you need to. 

Checking in with others — One:One’s are a great chance to catch up on what matters to people. We know people bring their whole selves to work yet so often we only focus on what happens when the work laptop is open. What is happening for them?

Random conversations — Create the opportunity for chat at the end of a call rather than always heading to end of the allocated time. 

Walking meetings — Switch to phone and have calls while out for a walk. Combining getting outside and taking exercise while listening. They have a tendency to be more relaxed as people are not staring at each other too

Receptionist, cleaner and PA — Some of the best intelligence comes from the receptionists, cleaners and PAs. OK so they are not in the office at the moment but they will still be getting the traffic. 

Take the trouble yourself — We are seeking the acknowledgement yet are we giving any cue’s out ourselves. It doesn’t take long and can mean a lot to those on the receiving end. What one piece of feedback comment ca you give today?

Bring the pets in — Days gone by it would have seem a sin to have children and animals ‘bombing’ calls. Today its just part of the whole picture. It can help people to connect more and in so doing people may talk more openly. 

Remember your strengths — You have your own soft intel by recognising your own strengths. What are your key skills, the things you enjoy doing and the remember the reasons you were selected for the role. 

The progress you’ve made — We know the marginal gain is the way we head in the ‘right’ direction. Learning from what has happened and tweaking and making small steps to get the progress we are seeking. Each day there is progress. Sometimes we cant see it as we try and take too bigger step. By breaking the steps down you truly recognise what is taking place. Pause at the end of each day and collect together three things that you have done that day to assist in working towards the change you are seeking to make.

Sharing the blind side — Be open about what and when you are feeling blind. Work with colleagues, peers and leaders with how best this can be maintained. Everyone has a responsibility. Are you keeping an even blind side?

There are more ways than you think that can maintain the soft intel and allow you to feel that you are on track. The dispersed workforce has thrown an unfamiliar curve ball that is an opportunity to think of things differently.

Why not have a go?

Image by Marek Piwnicki on Unsplash

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