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James Donnelly

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Top Stories by James Donnelly

How is it that normally secure, confident, outgoing people can feel so nervous about giving a presentation? A recent survey of the top 10 things people most dreaded showed Public Speaking as top of the list closely followed by Death! Presumably if you were asked to give a eulogy at a funeral you would prefer to be in the ‘box'. It is likely, as a manager, that you will be asked to present in some form or other to an audience. It may be something informal such as a "Good Luck and Thank-you" speech to a departing employee or a full-on presentation to the board. So what is it that prevents people from being themselves when it comes to public speaking? The main factor is ‘stage-fright', when you move centre stage and all the attention is on you, and you freeze. You are like a rabbit caught in the headlights of an oncoming vehicle at night. You are powerless; your legs fe... (more)

LinkedIn.com as a Business Tool

LinkedIn.com is a fantastic business tool for individuals and companies alike. It is a website that creates huge scope for networking, marketing, creativity and friendship. It is part of what is known as Web 2.0, the next generation of internet use, where social networking forms a large part of the new appreciation of the possibilities the internet provides. Facebook and MySpace set the ball rolling and now business people and companies are catching on. Many people who join LinkedIn use it as a shop window for themselves. It becomes their live, online CV or resume if they are lo... (more)

Sustainability in Business – What Does It Mean?

Sustainability is an increasingly common term in today's world. It is most widely used to communicate goals around ‘saving the planet', renewable energy and feeding the Earth's population. The concept of sustainability refers to the ability to maintain balance of a certain process or state in any system and is central to studies of ecological and biological systems. If we see business as an organism and start to explore sustainability as an overarching goal we will find that this idea has been around for hundreds of years. At Mitchell Phoenix we often ask people to consider  ‘What... (more)

Is Berlusconi the Leader Rascal or Rogue?

Government on Ulitzer More allegations about Silvio Berlusconi, Italy's Premier, have emerged in recent days. This time he is alleged to have exchanged business favors for sex from an escort. Call it sloppy management, a devil-may-care attitude or just bad luck, the whole episode reflects back on the vessel under his leadership. What business is it of ours how leaders behave on their own time? Surely they are entitled to a private life? Of course they are, as long as it remains private. Berlusconi has proved over many years that he is a flawed leader. He seeks the limelight and ... (more)

Management Development or How to Make a Soufflé

The Four Pillars of Successful Management Development Pillar 3: Structure You are choosing a management development programme for yourself or others in your organisation. Of all the factors you take into consideration – the cost, the content, whether the course is residential or not, whether you’ll be able to swim and sauna before the gourmet evening meal at the venue –probably the last thing to cross your mind will be the structure of the programme. Of course, you might discount a week-long programme on the basis that you can’t afford the time out of the office (or alternatively y... (more)