Sunday 17th November 23:44

Coaching Stories: Management Anecdotes

Use the links below to read some of the best anecdotes that illustrate the meaning behind management and development concepts.

Management Anecdote: "Picasso's Pic"


picassospic02_175 Every week, we try to bring you the widest range of management training resources we can find. This means anything that will help you in making your training and coaching more interesting, more varied, and more effective. That's why on these pages, we bring you games, exercises, theories, profiles of management writers, and, of course, the very best in management training products. One of the most popular of the management training materials we bring you is the anecdote or coaching story and here is one that always brings a smile to people's faces. It's called, "Picasso's Pic" and it has a valuable learning point... more

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Management Anecdote: "Stone Soup"

stonesoup_175 Of all the different kinds of management training materials that we bring you, one of our favourite techniques for learning is a good coaching story. Stories that coach are great ways to learn. When put together well, and communicated in a classic story-telling tradition, they are fun to listen to and easy to remember. And the best stories always bring a smile to people's faces and a glow to their hearts. If you want to see what I mean, read this story on teamwork and the company of those we care about. It's called "Stone Soup"... more

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Management Anecdote: "A Problem of Ice, Bears, and Honey Pots"

pylons_142 The management training resources we bring you range from articles, exercises, training plans, anecdotes, and quizzes, to management models, theories, websites, quotes, hints, tips, and new management training products. But one of our favourite kinds of resource is a good case study, preferably taken from a real-life situation that relates to the problems that managers face day-in, day-out. One such case study is the story of how the Pacific, Power and Light company in the North-western USA solved an intractable problem through brainstorming. Find out why we love this story here... more

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Management Anecdote: "Ugg and Bogg and the Threats of Change"

ugg Of all the management training materials that we produce, one of our favourites is the coaching story. That's because stories are often easier to understand and relate to than a management theory. They draw us in, keep us hooked, and, in the best examples, have a powerful punchline. That's certainly the case with the story of Ugg and Bogg, one of the best coaching stories that illustrate the threats of change. In this feature, we show you how you can use this classic story to illustrate how change can strike out of the blue... more 

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Management Anecdotes: Thomas Watson and the Magic of Story-Telling

storytelling_142 Thomas Watson is regarded as one of the greatest business leaders of the 20th century. He turned a small company producing weighing machines, International Business Machines, into the giant of the computer industry, IBM. Watson achieved this extraordinary success by an evangelical belief in what the company stood for and how everyone in it should behave. In short, he created a culture and became its role model. He also believed in creating a mythology about the organisation through story-telling. Discover how Watson used stories to spread the corporate word... more

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Management Anecdote: "Let the Tide Wash Away Your Worries"

turnofthetide_142 Stephen Covey is one of our favourite writers. One of his techniques is to turn personal experiences, stories, and anecdotes into valuable management training materials. In his best-selling book, "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People", Covey tells a little-known story by Arthur Gordon, called "The Turn of the Tide" about a man beset by overwhelming anxieties and worries. Although written back in 1974, it is just as relevant in today's world as then. Read it once and you'll find it can become your instant guide to stress relief and management... more

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Management Anecdote: "Worrying Yourself to Death"

overcomingworry03_175 A recent survey by the Everyman Campaign has discovered that the average person spends 36 minutes every day worrying. That's 9 whole days a year or a year and a half over a lifetime. To make matters worse, nearly half of respondents admitted that they can't stop worrying and believe they are "born worriers". If this picture of how people live their lives rings a bell with you, then take a moment out of your anxieties to read this story of The Man Who Worried Himself to Death... more 

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Management Anecdote: "Can You Sleep When the Wind Blows?"

fablecanyousleep This week in our second news slot, we bring you a great management fable that links in to our first feature on Business Controls Training. It's a story about the importance of putting in place measures to protect you and your business against the very worst that can happen to you, incuding the new management training materials that we're offering on risk management. We could have given you some of the facts about business risks, but we think the point is better made with this story... more

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Management Anecdote: "The Mexican Fisherman"

themexicanfisherman There are two ways of getting what you want. The first way is to set a goal, and through meticulous planning, apply your attention and intention to the outcomes you desire. In this approach, you see the goals as "out there" beyond your reach and their attainment is often a struggle. The other way is to believe that you already have what you want and that all you have to do is to realise it. Here is one of the most perceptive of all our coaching stories... more

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Management Anecdote: "The Acorn Planter"

acorn_175Generativity is one of the qualities that is often talked about in connection with personal development. It means the power to generate and produce things for the good of others. It means reaching a stage in your own growth where you are able to use your gifts in the service of others. One of the ways that we like to explain these types of qualities is through anecdotes, or coaching stories, and here we explain "generativity" with the inspirational story of "The Acorn Planter"... more

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Management Anecdote: "Paying for What You Want"

handout_142Knowing how to motivate your staff successfully is often regarded as the holy grail of management. When it works, staff deliver results without any effort on your part. The trouble is, most motivation is still based on the external model of rewards, such as money, bonuses, and recognition. These usually only have a temporary effect in motivating people which then wears off before another reward has to be given. In the end, external motivation means a high cost to you and your business. The following is one of the best coaching stories to illustrate the nature of external motivators... more

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Management Anecdote: "Perception Is All"

perception_175As human beings, one of the most difficult judgments we have to make is interpreting the huge amount of information we are bombarded with all day long. Most people are lazy about what they perceive and receive, interpreting outside stimuli according to the way they've always interpreted them or the way most others interpret them. But this doesn't lead to making judgments that are sound. Instead, if our work requires us to interpret information objectively, we need to remember the dangers of perception and prejudice. Here's one of those coaching stories that will make you think again... more

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Management Anecdote: "The New Emperor"

thenewemperor_142Integrity is one of the qualities that is often talked about in connection with leadership but is not always easy to define. It includes honesty, decency, ethics, authenticity, and uprightness, but is at one and the same time, not any of these and yet more than them. It is the one quality that we notice in its absence, for example, in the dubious personal dealings of some of the leaders of our financial corporations and business organisations, but rarely notice or appreciate when it is fully practised. So, here, to make the concept clearer, is one of the coaching stories from our "Stories that Coach" series that brings home the full power of "integrity"... more

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Management Anecdote: "The Fern and the Bamboo"

bamboo_142Whether we work for others or work on our own, we are all subject to the ups and downs of life. It is often tempting when we experience a downer to want to give up, the more so if it is something we wanted badly and cannot see why we "failed". The "Fern and Bamboo" anecdote is a reminder that there is no common path to what we call "success" and that just because you haven't achieved everything you want doesn't mean you should stop trying or give up. It is one of those coaching stories for those who dream long and dream big... more

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Management Anecdote: "Building a Vision"

buildingavision_175 When we work in a team, we can be at one of three levels. At level one, we belong to the team in name only. The team is simply where we report and we largely work alone. At level two, we use the team to help us realise our personal needs and goals. At level three, the team is the focus of all our work activities. We both give to the team and get something back. The team is the safety net that allows us to take big risks... more

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Management Anecdote: "How Am I Doing?"


03._howamidoing_200 In life as in people management, one of the things that people dislike most is being taken for granted. It's so easy to happen. When someone performs out of their socks, what might initially have been exceptional performance soon becomes the expected norm. Instead of recognising that people are going the extra mile, managers can easily find themselves taking people for granted and saying nothing. Take a view from the other side in one of our favourite coaching stories... more

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More Resources on Management Anecdotes

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