The Weekly Pulse is my content curation and my highlights from readings, books, podcasts, insights, and everything I discovered during the week.
So, let’s go with some discoveries from the week!
#1 – How to Retrain Your Frazzled Brain and Find Your Focus Again
#2 – Revisiting Agile Teams After an Abrupt Shift to Remote
#3 – What Children Lose When Their Brains Develop Too Fast
#4 – If You Encounter Any of These “Monster” Managers … Run
#5 – The Project Economy Has Arrived
How to Retrain Your Frazzled Brain and Find Your Focus Again
Source: The Guardian
Author: Eleanor Morgan
Summary: This article is for you that find it harder than ever to concentrate during the pandemic, where the focus just makes it impossible to concentrate on just one thing, like a book, your work, cleaning, or even cooking something. Eleanor Morgan suggests some exercises to help your brain come back to reality.
“… We can learn to focus better, but we need to think about attention differently. It is not something we can just choose to do. We have to train the brain as a muscle. Specifically, with short bursts of daily exercises…“
“… Stress is one of the biggest obstacles to focusing, says Dr Amishi Jha. In a high-alert state, we often start ruminating and catastrophizing. We get stuck in “loops of doom” or imagined scenarios. This mode impacts our working memory…”
“… After a fortnight of doing the exercises, I notice that being able to carve a little sliver of space between myself and the contents of my mind means I am able to divert my attention back to what I need to do more easily…”
Revisiting Agile Teams After an Abrupt Shift to Remote
Author: Santiago Comella-Dorda, Lavkesh Garg, Suman Thareja, and Belkis Vasquez-McCall
Summary: As organizations adapt to the pandemic, their agile teams can be a real source of competitive advantage. Agile teams are typically well suited to periods of disruption, given their ability to adapt to fast-changing priorities and digitization. But the abrupt shift to remote working in response to the coronavirus has challenged the typical approach to manage agile teams, right?
“… If the necessary technology is in place, a talented remote team can deliver just as much value as co-located teams…“
“… Teams already operating remotely before the crisis are less likely to struggle, given their ability to handle ambiguity without losing focus and to concentrate on outcomes over processes…”
“… Working in isolation is hard for any person, but particularly for agile teams accustomed to face-to-face communication and frequent interpersonal engagement. Multitasking and home-based distractions also take a toll, depending on how things are set up…”
What Children Lose When Their Brains Develop Too Fast
Source: The Wall Street Journal
Author: Alison Gopnik
Summary: Adverse early experiences can make young minds inflexible, while a carefree childhood has clear cognitive benefits. Brains start out being more plastic, more open to experience, and better at learning. But how would witnessing a traumatic event when you’re 5 years old put you at risk for cancer when you’re 50? Just how do early experiences shape development?
“… Children with more adverse childhood experiences are more likely to suffer from anxiety, depression or addiction as adults, and they have a higher risk of cancer and heart disease…“
“… The brain gets thicker in infancy, for instance, and then thins out in adolescence…”
“… The most important part of caring for young children is in some ways the easiest. Loving your children and giving them space to learn and explore is more important than crafting a particular curriculum…”
If You Encounter Any of These “Monster” Managers … Run
Source: Harvard Business Review
Author: Sulagna Misra
Summary: In this (funny) article we are going to meet these managers: the ghost, the zombie, the werewolf, the vampire and Sauron, the eye that sees all. If you find yourself dealing with one of these monster managers on a daily, here are some tips on how to fight them off.
“… No, your manager is not actually haunting your office. The truth is, this type of manager might just not be that interested in being a leader…“
“… The mummy is typically brand new to being the boss. They were promoted last week, and suddenly they’re wearing new clothes, they smell different, and they have a fancy new tomboffice…”
“… When you are on the other side of one of their outbursts, try to stay calm and remind yourself that their temper has nothing to do with you…”
The Project Economy Has Arrived
Source: Harvard Business Review
Author: Antonio Nieto-Rodriguez
Summary: Projects have displaced operations as the economic engine of our times, but despite this shift, many leaders still undervalue projects and project management. By 2027, 88 million people are likely to be working in project management, and the value of project-oriented economic activity will have reached $20 trillion.
“… Agile and traditional project management isn’t at war with each other. In a change-driven world, companies can’t apply just one methodology to all their projects…“
“… This transformation to a project economy will have profound organizational and cultural consequences. The problem is, many leaders still don’t appreciate the value of projects and write them off as a waste of time…”
“… By executing our projects better, we’ll be able to provide trillions of dollars worth of additional benefits to the world.…”
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