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WORDS OF WISDOM FROM MARIANNE WILIAMSON

Alexandria Joy - Tuesday, December 29, 2015
Each year I take time out during this break to reflect on the year that was and to pen my Annual Gratitude Letter - in my 2015 letter I wrote how on New Year's Even 2014 I read Oprah Winfrey's book What I know for sure that had been loaned to me by a dear friend Tracy. The book truly set the tone for me for the coming year and little did I know at the time that I would round off 2015 with a bus trip to see Oprah live in Sydney on 12 December 2015 with 10 of my Leading Ladies clients and friends organised by the very same friend Tracy. 

What an exquisite way to top and tail the year!

The middle of 2015 was also a peak or highlight for me as I had the amazing experience of travelling with my great friend Mel to Sir Richard Branson's private island Necker. While there we were joined by none other than spiritual teacher of our time - Marianne Williamson.

My experience of and interactions with Marianne had a surprising and profound impact on me personally as well as on the way we now operate at UQ Power. In this week's episode of UQTV I will share some of the wonderful insights I gained from time with this amazing leader. I hope you find her wisdom to provide you with some tasty food for thought at this time of the year as well.

 


PS - If you want to get a glimpse of the power of this woman then check out this video of her speaking recently on women and religion at the Parliament of World's Religions in Salt Lake City Utah - I have some footage I took of her speaking on Necker however the Caribbean breeze and 100 flamingos in the background make for challenging audio, plus I wanted to experience her in person not through an iPhone ;-)

I look forward to being of service and sharing more with you all on the other side in 2016!

With respect
  
Heidi Alexandra JOY Pollard

Lessons from Necker Island with Sir Richard Branson

Alexandria Joy - Monday, November 02, 2015
At the start of the year I compiled a list of 50 leaders that I wanted to meet, interview and bring to you to share their insight, wisdom and energy.

Of course being an entrepreneur myself the #1 person on my list was none other than Sir Richard Branson. In early 2015 I was delighted to discover myself and my great friend Melissa Histon, Founder of The Sista Code, had been successful in being accepted to attend a Virgin Unite Leadership Gathering called "When bold minds and big thinkers come together" hosted by Business Chicks on Sir Richard's private island Necker. 

Virgin Unite is the entrepreneurial foundation of the Virgin Group, uniting people and ideas to create opportunities for a better world to shine a spotlight on unacceptable issues; to incubate disruptive collaborations and to empower entrepreneurs to change business by giving access to skills, support and capital.

Headed up by the super smart Emma Isaacs, Business Chicks was created to bring like-minded souls together – to give us a chance to swap ideas, share stories, and spark inspiration. They're a tribe of explorers and a band of big thinkers and I couldn't think of a better group of people to travel to a leadership conference in the British Virgin Isles with!

From the moment I arrived on Necker until today I have felt a definite surge in energy, an expanded reality about what's possible and a new way to view workplace environments. In the spirit of service and sharing I bring you my learnings and insights from meeting and talking to none other than Sir Richard Branson. 



Who inspires you? Who would you like to most meet? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Be bold, think big, serve the world

Love 

Heidi Alexandra Joy

UQTV - How to Become an Awesome Employee

Alexandria Joy - Monday, October 19, 2015

If you're on the hunt for a new position or you want to become an indispensable employee who shines, then you want to understand the key traits that managers and CEOs look for in star employees. 

Some of the key traits they might be looking for are these three H's:

  • Happy: No one wants to work with an unhappy person. Energy drainers can bring down their team with their drama, mood and poor attitude and it's no way to earn brownie points. Do a quick self assessment - do you find yourself smiling at work, relaxed and conversing with open body language or are you closed, frowning and frantic all the time?
  • Hungry: No I don't mean you are in the kitchen snacking all the time! As the old adage goes, time is money. Leaders want people who are driven and hungry, who chase the sale, make the deal and get the job done efficiently and effectively. Do you make the most of every second? Do you hustle in your job duties? 
  • Honest: As an employee, you will be entrusted with inside information that's going to move the company forward. A leader doesn't want to have to second guess if you are going to deliver the work they're paying for and that you're not playing hooky or entertaining the competition. In short don't lie on your resume. Don't lie in your interview. Don't lie after you're hired. Companies don't run well and culture get toxic and poisonous when they don't have honest, decent employees in them. 
So how do you go to the next level and get known as a batteries included, star employee? Follow these three tips in this week's episode of UQTV.

How to Talk So Others Listen

Alexandria Joy - Monday, August 31, 2015
It goes without saying that an essential part of our every day work lives is the ability to communicate effectively. So how can you make some small changes to continually improve the way you communicate so that when you talk, others listen? 

Well first you should be considerate of your audience, having empathy is a critical skill in relating with others. The ability to consider the impact that your message will have on the other person is key, by seeking first to understand your audience, you will be better able to tailor your message for them. 

Also being courteous and respecting the receiver of your communication is important, when you are appreciative, thoughtful, and respectful, you create a cushion of good will on which your message can land. Just like your mother taught you, being polite will go a long way in any business or personal situation and allow your audience to feel more comfortable and therefore receptive to your message. 

These are just two simple behaviours which demonstrate your professionalism, in this week's episode of UQTV I share three more of the critical "Cs" to influential communication - see if they resonate with you!



Happy communicating!

Heidi Alexandra

Mindful Leadership - Expert Interview with Charlotte Thaarup

Alexandria Joy - Sunday, July 05, 2015

As the world around us continues to change and increase in pace and complexity leaders can find themselves increasingly vulnerable to high pressure and stress. 

Which is why I'm delighted to bring this week's interviewee Charlotte Thaarup to the screens of UQTV. Charlotte is a clinical mindfulness consultant who facilitates mindfulness based workshops locally and abroad to help overwhelmed leaders and those on an inner journey to become more resourceful and calm.

I have the pleasure of co-facilitating many workshops with Charlotte as well as participating in one of her mindfulness retreats at the serene Zen Resort in Bali late last year. Charlotte not only practices what she preaches, she also is one of the most compassionate, non-judgemental leaders I have had the pleasure to work with. 

Earlier this year I compiled a list of 50 thought leaders I’d most like to interview through UQTV to inspire you to grow flourish and make the shift to lead in this new world of work. Charlotte is featured on that list as I believe she is a game changer for the new world of work. I hope you enjoy this third interview for our series of 50 Leaders I Most Want to Interview.

Tweet this: Mindful leadership is not a passing fad

For more information and resources on mindful leadership, mindfulness in the workplace and mindful eating visit Charlotte's website The Mindfulness Clinic.

Check out my list of 50 Leaders I Most Want to Interview here, I'm excited to say I hope to be marking the #1 leader off in about 1 weeks' time!

Remember if you want to change the world you have to #startwithU

Heidi Alexandra 

Let's talk about boobies and all things pink

Alexandria Joy - Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Everything about Pinky McKay is out there and pink!

As a parenting and lactation expert Pinky is a sought after presenter and has appeared on TV shows such as the Today Show, The Project, Sunday Sunrise, Insight, A Current Affair and Today Tonight. 

In a world where common sense isn’t so common, Pinky McKay provides real-world, no-nonsense, parenting support and approaches with a blend of humour, sharp wit and wisdom not found anywhere else. She specializes in gentle parenting styles that honour mothers’ natural instincts to respond to their babies and empower a positive response from infants and toddlers. 

From humble beginnings running a private practice in Melbourne, Pinky has now become the founder and CEO of a range of products for breastfeeding mums with her #1 product Boobie Bikkies proving a hit with new mums around Australia. 

In this episode of UQTV as part of our 50 Leaders I Most Want to Interview series I dive into the creation of Boobie Bikkies and how Pinky has grown from a one on one business to a pink phenomenon. 


Pinky’s books, resources and her free newsletter ‘Gentle Beginnings’ are available through her website www.pinkymckay.com.


Now, Pinky and I would love to hear from you. Where are you lost in a sea of sameness when you could back yourself and stand out as unique (and pink)? 

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Thank you for reading, watching, and sharing in the comments below.
To your success, on your terms!
Heidi Alexandra 

Do You Have The Leadership BLT Factor

Alexandria Joy - Monday, March 02, 2015
The virtue of a man ought to be measured, not by his extraordinary exertions, but by his everyday conduct. Blaise Pascal

Business leaders and entrepreneurs with the BLT Factor have a distinct competitive edge over others. And as the quote above suggests, it's not that they are necessarily superior, nor achieve extraordinary things, but  that they instill great trust through the little things, and their every day actions and behaviours. 

You can have a compelling vision, focused strategy, excellent communication skills and a talented team, but if you don't have these three things that make up the BLT Factor yyou will always fall short of the results you want. 

What are the 3 key skills that make up the Leadership BLT Factor? Watch this four minute video to find out what they are and how you can apply them to your leadership toolkit:


Have you ever worked for a boss that lacked the BLT factor? How did this leave you feeling and what were the challenges it created in your workplace? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


Four Steps To Leading During A Downturn

Alexandria Joy - Monday, December 08, 2014

At UQ Power we imagine a world where people wake up every day inspired to go to work and return home at the end of the day feeling fulfilled and as though they have had an opportunity to use their unique strengths. 

Sadly this is often not the case. During turbulent times and economic challenges, many organisations and their leaders hunker down and resort to container style management - restriction, rigid policies and procedures, cost cutting and endless accountability trails. 

I recently wrote an article about the ill effects of poor leadership that struck a nerve receiving around 55,000 views and 500 comments about how the quality of your manager is more important to your health than the quality of your doctor. In fact studies from Europe and the US are showing that when people say “my boss is killing me”, quite literally this could be the case. 

The challenge during these tough economic times, particularly here in Australia where businesses who are heavily reliant on the mining, manufacturing and industrial sector are feeling the pinch, is not to fall into this trap and instead continue to inspire and engage people to create a healthy, productive workforce.

So what is the opportunity inherent in the current crushing economic climate and mining downturn? One thing we are discovering through our work at UQ Power is more and more people committed to finding new ways to clarify what matters most, to respect people and their individuality and to experiment with new ways to do things. This change in focus creates what we call a four way win: improved performance at work, at home, in the community and for the self. 

Could the current downturn make it easier to experiment with new attitudes and serve as a catalyst for your own reinvention as a leader? Watch this week's episode of UQTV for four ways you can continue to lead during a downturn. 

 


Now it’s your turn. What opportunities or silver linings have you found during your toughest economic times? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


The Art of Persuasion: How to Get People to Do What You Want

Alexandria Joy - Friday, November 21, 2014

There's a fine line between persuasion and manipulation and whether we choose to like it or not we are using one of these approaches in almost everything we do in business and human interaction. If you want to learn how to ethically and honestly influence people then read on.

In my latest book “It all starts with UQ Power” I reference a classic book on psychology, marketing and human behaviour known as Influence, the psychology of persuasion by Dr Robert Cialdini Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Marketing, Arizona State University. This classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say "yes"—and how to apply these understandings. (Note: I am not of Italian descent and yes I pronounce his name incorrectly - you can hear the proper pronounciation here! Hey I'm only human).

Dr Cialdini’s research found six universal principles that when applied will help you become a skilled persuader and get people to do what you want. In today's video I want to focus on just three of the six principles.


Now it’s your turn. What’s your number one takeaway from these three principles of persuasion? Which one are you already applying in your life or business? Share your thoughts in the comments below, I’d love to know!

PS Here's the link to the video I recommend https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cFdCzN7RYbw#t=18 
PPS Check out the photos from our recent Secret Leaders Breakfast with Editor of the Renegade Collective, Lisa Messenger here. To sign up for the Secret Leaders list enter your details here. 

THE POWER OF EYE CONTACT

Alexandria Joy - Sunday, September 14, 2014

Look inside your kitchen cabinet and odds are you have a collection of old friends gazing back at you — the Rice Bubbles cartoon characters, the Frosted Flakes tiger, the Honey Puffs bee, the Milo boy, the Sultana Bran sunshine face, you get the idea. The real reason they are there has more do with your subconscious craving for eye contact than the taste of the products.

A recent study published in the journal Environment and Behavior, researchers at Cornell University manipulated the gaze of the cartoon rabbit on Trix cereal boxes and found that adult subjects were more likely to choose Trix over competing brands if the rabbit was looking at them rather than away. The researchers also found that the eyes of characters on boxes of cereal marketed to kids were directed downward, to meet the upward gaze of children in grocery store aisles. (Yes check it out next time you walk through a supermarket - subliminal trickery).

“Making eye contact even with a character on a cereal box inspires powerful feelings of connection,” said one of the study's authors Professor Brian Wansink.

In other studies, researchers have also found that children and adults who avoid or are denied eye contact are more likely to suffer from depression and feelings of isolation as well as exhibit antisocial traits such as callousness. Rather than cause and effect, the hypothesis is that the relationship between less eye contact and psychological problems is circular and reinforcing. This is alarming in a society where people increasingly spend more time looking at their mobile devices than at one another.

In short eye contact makes us more socially aware and empathetic. It allows us to make sense of our relationships and social orientation. Moreover, research from as far back as the 1980s indicates that people who make eye contact are perceived as more likable and trustworthy. 

Still not convinced about how much your peepers mean to you sales, marketing and business relationships? Then check out this episode of UQTV where I will share two more reasons why eye contact adds impact.

Amazeballs right!

But wait - researchers at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine last year also found that patients of doctors who made more eye contact had better health, adhered more to medical advice and were more likely to seek treatment for future problems. Not surprisingly, doctors who brought laptops into the examining room made less eye contact.

“Eye contact is a really good surrogate for where attention is and the level of accord building in a relationship,” said Enid Montague, a professor of engineering and medicine at Northwestern, who used video recordings of 100 patient visits to a primary care clinic for her analysis. “We found eye contact leads to significantly better patient outcomes.”

So eye contact with your doc can make you healthier too!

Tweet this: Eye contact increases your EQ

Tweet this: Patients of doctors who made eye contact are healthier

Now it’s your turn. What are some of your tips for building rapport and trust in relationships? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Until next time keep on building a life, business or career that plays to your unique strengths – the best thing you can do to change the world is to #startwithu.

Thanks for watching

Heidi Alexandra 
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