Crelos January 2009 Newsletter

Crelos Newsletter

January 2009

Welcome to The Crelos Quarterly

Over the past month I’ve attended three events where ‘trust’ has been a key theme; trust in the financial system, trust in the media and trust in teams. Polar adventurer, Alan Chambers’ view is that there is no trust without honesty. In my experience, when under extreme pressure, in extreme environments being honest with yourself, let alone others, is hard enough but, as Chambers says “in a polar expedition team it is not only the difference between success and failure but also between life and death”.

In the media, financial journalist, Robert Bruce, suggests that good journalism is the crux to restoring confidence and trust. “A definition of good and bad journalism is reporting what people need to know hear versus what they want to hear.” One is logically right, the other emotionally satisfying.

The emotional trigger of trust is a chemical called Oxytocin and a process known as THOMAS (The Human Oxytocin Mediated Attachment System). THOMAS’ effects are modulated by our large prefrontal cortex that houses the ‘executive’ regions of the brain. THOMAS is all emotion, while the prefrontal cortex is deliberative… THOMAS causes us to empathize with others, the key to building social relationships.

Trust is both an emotional and logical act. In times of change, leaders must focus on both the provision of accurate information to aid the logical process and on personal honesty to support the emotional. Psychology, when applied precisely helps accelerate organisational change.

Ali Gill
CEO, Crelos

At A Glance...

Thinking Aloud

Looking Forward


Shaping Our Current Thinking

Did You Know?

Thinking Aloud

What are words worth?

Research tells us that change programmes fail in 75% of cases – largely because people feel left out of the process and end up lacking the motivation, skills and knowledge to adopt new systems and procedures. We may think we have the programme planned but we’re dealing with the vagaries of human behaviour – and their interpretation of both what’s going on and what is being said. Whilst one tool in such a programme is the tool of ‘communication’, we need to select and use it carefully and precisely to achieve what we want.

In this paper, the next in our series of Thinking Aloud papers, we look at language and how we can improve our use of it.

I’d welcome your comments so please do contact me.

Looking Forward

Trends for 2009

Current uncertainty across all sectors and all business makes planning and the prediction of trends not an easy task. We’ve summarised the trends which we believe will be influencing organisations in this coming year.Read our predictions here.


‘Talent Management in Tough Times’ – a seminar with Digby Morgan

Managing talent during a downturn caused headaches across general business managers and HR professionals alike. With years of buoyant employment, not everyone has had exposure to – or experience of – a retracting market. And that’s why we are delighted to partner with Digby Morgan, a recognised leader in HR recruitment, to co-host a talent breakfast on 21 January 2009 in Reading where Ali Gill will be speaking about ‘Talent Management in Tough Times’.

Private Equity market realises the value of the top team – ICAEW lunch – 6 February

The strategy for the private equity market is changing. The focus is now on ‘buy and build’ and to build and create value requires getting the right leadership team in place. An independent, objective and detailed understanding of each of their capabilities provides the PE firm with the knowledge of who can take the business forward and if necessary, what capabilities to bring into the team.

Crelos is proud to be sponsoring the ICAEW Corporate Finance Faculty Chairman’s Lunch on 6 February 2009. The subject for discussion is ‘World class assessment and development of management teams’.

Shaping Our Current Thinking

Crelos’ Telecommunications, Media and Technology specialist, Leon Fisher, provides his view on the telecommunications sector and its people challenges.

Did You Know?

Did you know…?

… that Yell have reduced attrition rate by up to 2% and increased performance in their sales teams by 5% by knowing what to look for in applicants – and looking for it?

… that the optimal gender mix for an innovative team is 50/50? Research by London Business School shows that there are four variables that are known to stimulate innovation (psychological safety of the whole team and its members; self confidence of the team and its members; the extent to which they are prepared to take risks and experiment; the general efficiency of the team) and for all these critical factors to be present in a team, the optimal gender mix is 50%/50% men and women.

… employee engagement scores are significantly higher when senior managers are seen to foster a listening culture (96%) as opposed to when they are not (31%)? Research from Best Companies reports.