Stand-Up Guys: The Virtues of Standing Meetings

By Laura Stack

Stand-Up Guys: The Virtues of Standing Meetings by Laura StackIn the white-collar world, sitting down all day is both a blessing and a curse. Sitting makes it a lot easier to focus our intellects, since we’re basically in a resting but erect position; this also allows us to work interrupted for longer periods of time. But there can be side effects; too little physical exercise (as opposed to the mental exercise we enjoy daily) worsens the natural tendency toward “middle-aged spread” and makes us more sedentary. This results in less energy, slowing our productivity. Sitting too much can also interfere with or damage the circulatory process in our legs.

This is doubtless the reason why stand-up desks have become common (I love mine from Ikea). But who wants to stand all day? At some point, you tire of standing, your feet and ankles hurt, and you still have to stretch your legs frequently. Ultimately, a mixture of standing and sitting throughout the course of the day may prove most advantageous, though the jury remains out on this issue.

Be that as it may, some things you can do standing definitely boost your productivity. One is the stand-up meeting. Attendees ignore chairs, huddle together almost like football players, and talk as they would in a normal sitting meeting. Studies show standing meetings average 33% shorter than sitting meetings on the same subjects, proceed more efficiently, and usually end early or on time. And here’s the kicker: they burn 50% more calories, and actually have other positive health effects, including increased alertness. No wonder speakers and performers are always much more likely to stand than sit, above and beyond the need to be seen by everyone!

It’s no surprise that stand-up meetings run shorter than sit-down ones. After all, who really wants to stand in one place for an hour in even the most comfortable heels or loafers? There’s a good reason the gluteus maximus is the largest muscle in the human body, right? If nothing else, physical discomfort forces us to confront and deal with our concerns more directly in a stand-up meeting.

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Enjoy a New Book by Joseph Michelli

What makes the customer experience in some companies stand out from all the rest?  You should read Joseph Michelli’s newest book Driven to Delight: Delivering World-Class Customer Experience the Mercedes-Benz Way.

D2D final book cover 82515His newest book was released Tuesday, December 8, and is the latest in his series of business books about quality customer experience companies, following his books about The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, Starbucks, Zappos, UCLA Health System, and the Pike Place Fish Market.  Driven to Delight chronicles the Mercedes-Benz USA journey to elevate the company’s customer experience to be on par with the excellence of its vehicles.

Through his business, The Michelli Experience, Dr. Michelli has spent his career helping front-line employees, managers, and senior leaders deliver relevant and engaging service experiences.  His presentations and consulting focus on corporate culture, balance, customer service, and success with his own humorous touch.  Dr. Michelli presents on Driven to Delight, but also offers a range of programs on service excellence and customer experience.

Joseph A. Michelli, Ph.D., is an internationally sought-after speaker, author, and organizational consultant who transfers his knowledge of exceptional business practices in ways that develop joyful and productive workplaces with a focus on the total customer experience.  If you would like read more about Dr. Michelli, please view his biography at: Joseph Michelli 

If you would be interested in booking Dr. Michelli for your next event, please contact us at: Capitol City Speakers Bureau

The Leader as Santa

by Chip Bell

Santa silhouetteFull disclosure with a hat tip to Clement Moore, the author of the famous 1823 poem, “A Visit From St. Nicholas.” This is not intended to advocate obesity (“chubby and plump”) or smoking (“stump of a pipe”).  But, the holiday season and his poem provide a metaphor through which to examine the role of the leader.

The obvious connection to Santa is the message of generosity—always an important dimension of great leadership.  The holiday day season underscores the significance of compassion, peace and good will–all necessary cultural ingredients for a growing organization; especially one that recognizes competitive advantage comes from innovation.  But the poem provides us more than the typical festive messages; Santa, like great leaders, is also fun-loving, passionate, and humble.

Leadership is undergoing a metamorphous in our democratic culture.  As we shift from a brawn-based, manufacturing economy to a brain-based, service economy; and, as the values of Gen Xers and Millennials replace the influence held by baby boomers, there is an opportunity to rethink effective leadership.  The new leadership models are not determined by the age of the leader but by the attitude and values she or he brings to the role.

For our exploration through the Santa Claus lens, I have chosen two renowned leaders as examples:  Herb Kelleher, the founder and long time CEO of Southwest Airlines and Cheryl Batchelder, the CEO of Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen.  Each brings a unique expression of the tenets of effective modern day leadership.

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