How I Work

The Results You Can Expect
When You Work With Me

 I’ve detailed the results that other clients have received working with me, and that your organization can, too. I’ve also included several values that guide me; my approach, or how I work with clients; and what makes me more effective than most other firms.

Communication issues that result in misunderstandings
and resistance get resolved

 Employees give managers great suggestions about how to help them perform better. Your managers are typically pleased to receive them, and implement them consistently.

The shop floor produces more quality work with work-in-progress improvements, and meets more customer deadlines. As two-way communication increases between supervisors and production workers, work-in-progress improves, including maintaining production schedules.

Managers deliver needed performance feedback, get more cooperation and less defensiveness from employees. They discuss performance issues the way employees want to be spoken with, to avoid resistance, or resolve it.

Top management gets more ideas, perspectives, potential gains or problems, and buy-in from middle managers. More informed decision-making, and a head start implementing new directives, services, and products is the result.

Workplace conflicts that undermine morale are avoided

 Peers approach each other about needs, requests, and concerns, improving how they work together. Cooperation and comfort levels increase, and so does their combined productivity as they work as partners.

Work flow improves as internal and external customers get solutions and services. Now that they know how, departments prefer to collaborate on projects, problems, concerns, and obstacles instead of avoiding, or arguing, about them.

Managers avoid creating conflicts, and resolve them more effectively. They politely communicate concerns, and collaborate with other managers to resolve them, increasing cooperation and coordination between them.

HR spends more time on strategic objectives, and less time on issues, which get resolved where they’re best handled: where they occur. The people with the issues and problems now effectively solve them.

Issues that sidetrack your organization’s performance
and productivity are greatly reduced or eliminated

Directors and executive teams communicate openly, increasing trust, accountability, and applying more of their expertise to achieve results. Concerns are discussed safely and comfortably between directors and their departments, improving internal coordination and service.

 Employee learning, expertise, and performance increases between appraisals. Managers deliver fast and effective “on the spot” coaching while avoiding long discussions. Performance appraisals become easier and more comfortable.

You retain talent for mentoring and succession planning; keep more high performing employees longer; and reduce turnover costs. You develop and promote more talent from within, mentor new employees, and reduce frustrating and costly “hire and train, hire and train” cycles.

Employees communicate mistakes or errors so they can be corrected before they become more costly and time-consuming. Employees feel safe to communicate with their managers about them, resulting in fewer problems and costs.

The values that drive me. And benefit you.

Some of my friends think I’m cheap or frugal in some ways, but what I really dislike is unnecessary waste, especially wasted or unused potential in people and organizations. I’m the type of guy who uses everything up before discarding or recycling it. Plus, I like to get my money’s worth. Most employees, supervisors, managers, and executives would agree that they aren’t accomplishing as much as they could be, given their abilities; quality products and services; and hard work. My goal is to help you tap more of the capabilities and potential your people and organization already have.

I believe in people. I believe that most people, including employees, managers, and executives have the desire to learn, participate, and contribute more. Most of them want to do a good job, and find purpose and achievement. They often just need better opportunities or skills to do so.

Let’s work with others and do our work because we want to, not just because we have to. The first way excites, engages, and motivates us; the second way is a hardship. Let’s get rid of blame, learn from the results we get or don’t get, decide what we want next, and work towards it. Let’s encourage and affirm each other.

I like to know what the expectations are, and then work doggedly to meet them.  It’s important to me to be clear up front about what I’m going to do; plan it out; understand how I’m doing; and work at it until it’s done. That’s satisfaction.

My approach begins with not “painting over rust.”

 We’re not going to “paint over rust. You know what happens if you do; the rust is covered up for a while, but then it resurfaces because we didn’t take an extra step to remove it. A lot of training is like this: it’s conducted well, with good content and delivery, and hopefully seeps down and corrects underlying issues, conflicts, or obstacles, but it often doesn’t. We’ll correct this.

I’ll skillfully and appropriately work with you to identify the issues and causes that create problems, or block positive changes. So that the strategies needed to resolve them can be developed, making your program successful. Issues or obstacles may include workplace conflicts; past resentments; previous management styles; and unmet needs or expectations.

Going to extra lengths to be sure I understand your business: even riding with EMTs on emergency calls. In order to fully satisfy an emergency services provider (think ambulances), that I truly “understood their business,” I rode along with EMTs on several emergency calls (with proper protocols in place). Every one of my clients gets specific recommendations based on their business and designed to achieve their objectives.

I don’t use PowerPoint presentations. Instead, my participants learn through demonstrations, brief presentations, discovery, contributing input, and skill practices. As a result, they’re much more interested in, and committed to, applying new skills and insights.

I do use a lot of interaction and communication. It makes sense to use them, because I’m helping people develop effective interaction and communication skills. Which means it logically takes “interaction and communication” in order to capably learn them.

I’ll help your people continue their efforts even after I leave. The day I leave is when your people can begin to use more of their skill reinforcement program to help them achieve results over the long term. More about this in the next section.

What makes me more effective?

 I’m going to encourage your participants to go “off script,” because it’s how some of the best learning and results occur. As they contribute their situations, concerns, applications, and questions, we’ll directly apply what they’re learning to them. As a result, they’ll often start to look for other situations to improve, such as giving feedback to their boss safely, or to a peer without creating resentment. This means they’re engaged, thinking creatively, and working hard.

I’ll help you protect your financial investment by helping your people continue to use their new skills, and achieve results. Ongoing skill reinforcement is often a missing ingredient in other training programs, but standard practice with me. It begins after the first session, and continues for several months after training concludes. This way, your people learn and reinforce skills over a period of time, so they retain and apply more of it. Plus, they also learn how to handle new situations as they occur, gaining both confidence and competence.

My guarantee means I’ll do it until it’s done right.

“I guarantee that you’ll be satisfied with your program. If you’re not, I’ll conduct any area of it again at my own time and expense until you are. And I’ll put this in writing.”
– Ross Blake

My Programs are designed to help each client achieve their specific objectives.
To learn more about them, go to Services and Programs.

“The programs we administer for improving the quality of early care and education in Northwest PA require a great deal of collaborative effort on the part of my staff and the providers they work with in a 19 county area of Pennsylvania. New skills helped us improve communication and working relationships between managers, supervisors, and staff. They also helped us stay current with state-mandated changes, and fulfill our contractual agreements. We highly recommend Ross Blake’s work in communication skills and strategies, and how he works with his clients.” 

 

- Joyce A. Miller

CEO, Northwest Institute of Research

“This is the best training I’ve had in 30 years that I can use.”

- Debbie Rapp

Site Supervisor, The Resource Center

 Free people to communicate & do more productive work.

Conversations at Work helps people in organizations have the workplace
conversations they’ve been avoiding—and improve productivity.

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