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May 5, 2013
Kindness is the #1 character strength in America, according to a global survey of 24 character strengths.
But, what about the workplace? Often, kindness is reserved for family, friends, and community, while the workplace is cutthroat.
Today, I’m giving you a free online quiz to see: Do you work in a cutthroat or a compassionate organization?
May 2, 2013
Expressing gratitude is the first happiness prescription that psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky gives her book, The How of Happiness. People who are consistently grateful are not only happier, but more energetic, hopeful, helpful, empathetic, forgiving, spiritual, and religious.
April 30, 2013
For an “out of the box” experience for our April 2013 Positive Links Speaker Series session, we toured Menlo Innovations, an Ann Arbor-based software development firm nationally know for its innovative work practices. Menlo CEO Rich Sheridan and his team welcomed us for a visit that included these insights:
Honest estimates: Menlo supports a culture of honest estimates of how long it will take to do a given project – there are no penalties for the actual time needed being more or less than originally estimated. They tell clients that 49% of jobs come in under the estimate, 49% come in over, and only 2% at the estimated time.
High Tech Anthropologists: Menlo sends teams to the client site to observe and learn firsthand about their culture and practices, to better inform their work for the client. In one case, this resulted in solving a mystery about why a piece of electronic equipment kept failing – workers in the field were unknowingly damaging it.
April 29, 2013
In this video discussing the future of care and compassion in business, Dr. Jane Dutton discusses this as a particularly generative time for thinking about compassion in business, with new possibilities and organizations emerging to generate scientific and social advances in the study and practice of compassion.
April 28, 2013
In this short video introduction, Professor Jane Dutton welcomes you to a special issue of the Academy of Management Review focused on understanding and creating compassionate organizations. The special issue features nine highly diverse papers selected from over ninety-six submissions in a rigorous peer review process.
April 19, 2013
Our friend and colleague, Adam Grant (whose work we have featured in this blog before), has a new book that is receiving wonderful media attention from outlets as diverse as the New York Times Magazine and the Diane Rehm Show. The title of his book is Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success, and it has its own accompanying web page, blog, assessment tool, and opportunity to nominate and highlight givers you know and admire.
April 15, 2013
Here is an opportunity for you to contribute to research on compassion in organizations. The Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley, partnered with research collaborative CompassionLab to develop an online quiz to measure the level of compassion in an organization. The 23-question quiz is based on more than 10 years of research on compassion and organizations by members of CompassionLab and the Center for Positive Organizational Scholarship.
April 1, 2013
While we often think about compassion as an individual quality, the organizations where we spend our time—such as workplaces, schools, places of worship, and community centers—can actually impact whether and how we respond to someone in distress.
March 29, 2013
I was invited to meet with a group of young professionals in medicine to discuss the topic of becoming a change agent. I started with two questions. First, I asked them each to define the term. “A leader,” they responded. “Someone who can stimulate people to feel, think, see and do things in a new way.”
March 27, 2013
I recently listened to a talk by Fred Keller, the CEO of Cascade Engineering, a company recognized for its positive approach to business. One of the unusual practices for which Cascade is known is bringing in people who are on the welfare rolls and turning them into productive employees.
March 20, 2013
There is a phrase used in Bob Quinn’s book Deep Change that is intentionally provocative—perhaps a little too provocative: “being willing to die for the organization that would kill you for caring.” I once had a discussion with someone about this phrase, and her reaction was immediate and visceral: “I can’t see why anyone would die for their organization. I wouldn’t.”
March 18, 2013
Let’s continue with Martin Seligman’s PERMA Framework in the context of organizations. So far, we have looked at Positive Emotions and Meaning. Let’s take a look at processes, systems, culture and so forth that support Engagement. The photo above is our team at the Center for Positive Organizational Scholarship. In future posts, we will come to Positive Relationships, and Achievement.