Oh what an experience and oh what a city!

02 October 2019 Virginia Brookes

New York X Business Chicks

Exactly 4 weeks ago today I set off on an adventure where I had no idea what to expect but I was excited! I was one of a group of 28 business women who had embarked on a trip together to not only see the sights of New York but the chance to explore some of the most exciting businesses in New York as well as to spend 2 days at Stern NYU Business school where the focus was on disruptive thinking, sparking transformation and the new world of work, all very thought provoking stuff! We were also off to spend a day with the NYFD at their NYC training facility “The Rock” to learn lessons in leadership – this I think, for me, was going to be the highlight of my trip!

Given October is mental health month I thought I would give you some insights into the first Head Office we set off to see was which was Arianna Huffingtons Thrive Global offices! We were lucky enough to spend some time with Mariana Khidekel the Global Chief Business Officer of Thrive as well as Marina Khidekel the Editorial Director of Thrive.

Arianna Huffington (Huffington Post) founded Thrive after discovering a connection between well being and performance due to her personal collapse from exhaustion back in 2007. Whilst we were at Thrive we talked about what we can do for ourselves as well as our team to ensure that we are mentally ahead of our game!

Some of the tips that I took away from the Thrive offices which I am going to incorporate into my office functions are:

  • Each person in your team should practice daily gratitude – its hard to go through the day without knowing what you are truly grateful for – maybe bring this into your morning meeting.

  • Habit stacking – we are all guilty of creating huge new goals for ourselves but how about we just start with small new habits and gradually stack those habits into creating a big new habit. Remember – how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time!

  • Similar to Habit stacking is Microsteps – we all want to be fitter, smarter, more successful – how about a walk around the block at lunch instead of kicking yourself that you didn’t go to the gym? How about a chapter of a book each day and not the whole book at once?  do small steps each day to enable yourself to take big steps

  • When doing one on ones how about doing a good lap around the block rather than staring at each other across a meeting room. This gets you both outside, gets the blood flowing, gives you a break from the office – try this for some meetings too – lots of incidental exercise (remember habit stacking & micro steps!)

  • Don’t just do exit interviews do entry interviews – find out what your new employee likes outside of work and how they like to communicate, really get to know them!

  • Do shorter and device free meetings – all of your meetings will be shorter and more powerful if no one is distracted with devices

  • There’s nothing wrong with a 10 minute power nap – this is generally 3 o’clock itis! Have a nap rather than chocolate!

Just as we were coming into the last moments of our chat at Thrive who else should walk in but Agapi Stassinopoulos the best selling author and speaker as well as Arianna’s sister! Agapi took us through a wonderful mindfulness meditation which again is an important reminder of taking stock of our thoughts during the day – some of us were lucky enough to get a copy of her new book too – it now lives on my bedside table to read a chapter each night!

Stay tuned for next weeks blog – a day with NYFD at “The Rock”.