The latest trend in workplace training may be “in the moment coaching.” It challenges employees to stay focused so they don’t leave meetings or conversations wondering what just happened.
Staying in the moment keeps our minds from drifting, so we can really listen and retain critical information.
“When you are in the present and pay attention to what’s going on, you learn not just what’s being spoken, but also the underlying emotion of a team,” says Anese Cavanaugh, owner of coaching company Dare to Engage.
Here’s what the top coaches advise:
Turn your back to the computer when someone is talking to you, says Cavanaugh.
Get up, stretch, walk away and then come back and focus, recommends Miami attorney Harvey Sepler. One sign that it’s time for a focus break: You’re talking to someone but thinking about something you’ve got to do.
Use the same technique as golfers—the standing meditation, says Miami business coach Roberto Suarez. Once in position, focus on body position and silence.
Concentrate on breathing to calm a racing mind, advises Sue Bethanis, an executive coach. Then bring your attention back to the work at hand or the person talking to you.
“You might even need to write something down,” Bethanis says.
Pull the plug on electronic devices. That may be the best solution, given this statistic: A typical worker turns to e-mail more than 50 times a day and uses instant messaging 77 times, according to computer productivity consultant RescueTime.
— Adapted from “Workers learn to keep their minds on present,” Cindy Krischer Goodman, The Miami Herald.
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