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Communication lessons from Winnie The Pooh

This Monday is Winnie The Pooh Day, celebrated on what would have been author A.A.Milne’s birthday. One of my favourite childhood stories, the adventures of Winnie the Pooh and the other animals that inhabit Hundred Acre Wood, have plenty of heartwarming lessons and inspirational messages for all of us, at any stage of life.

I was reading through some of the most famous and well loved of Pooh Bear’s quotes, and it made me think about how and why these messages are so powerful, and what makes the writing so compelling for both children and adults, as much now as it did in 1926 when the stories were first published.

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Woman checking her email in a meeting

Start 2021 with a clear inbox!

Clutter is not good for us, whether physical, emotional – or electronic! It leads to us feeling overwhelmed, distracted and muddled – unable to differentiate between what is important, what is urgent, and what is neither. When we have organisation and order, we feel much calmer, we have more clarity and space to think/work/create, and find it much harder to procrastinate, leading us to be more focussed and achieve better results.

As the new year has just started, most of us are clearing out and creating space for the year ahead. Whether this is simply physically tidying your desk, or reorganising your office, or mentally in reviewing your goals and ambitions and clearing out any negativity that you may have brought with you from the chaos of 2020. The new year is a perfect time for making a clean start, renewing focus and commitment and generating positive energy.

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Words Think Positive on wooden table with group of pencils.

We’re back!

Happy New Year!

We know, it’s been a while. A month in fact since we shared a blog post and social media content… And this only one month after ourselves writing about the damage that pausing communications does to your brand – the irony is not lost on us!

However it was the end of a tough year, culminating in many more challenges than we had anticipated, and priorities had to be shifted. Now, we know that’s not right and we would certainly not advocate chopping and changing priorities, but we’re also acutely aware that this year has been a game changer and lots of us have struggled to keep plates spinning, and there is no shame at all in admitting this and renewing a commitment to do better.

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Avoiding the cliches: How to portray the UAE authentically

How is it already that time of year? The biggest day in the UAE calendar – National Day – is upon us this week.

Celebrating the unification of the seven emirates and the birth of the United Arab Emirates, every organisation in the country pays homage to their host, displaying flags, coloured lights, and through all manner of marketing activities and events. This year there will obviously be some changes, as event organisers take COVID 19 health and safety precautions into account, but the air of celebration and pride is as strong as ever, all across the country.

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Remote meeting. Man working from home during coronavirus or COVID-19 quarantine, remote office concept.

Top tips for effective remote working

So much has changed this year, and we have all been forced to adapt the way we think, act and work in order to survive. With the profusion of global lockdowns around the world over the last few months, one thing we have all become familiar with is remote working – from the comfort and safety of our homes. As someone who works independently anyway, this is not unfamiliar to me – in fact over the years I have often escaped the heat of the Dubai summers to work from cooler climes for a few months – but I think a lot of people don’t think to consider some of the key factors which ensure that working remotely is a success.

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Focused fashionable youngsters of diffeent nations, read attentively information in tablet and smart phones, develop web page online, stand in queue indoors at office, have serious expressions

Creating effective intercultural communications

So, Monday 16th November is International Day of Tolerance – a day when we embrace diversity and tolerance. Our acceptance and tolerance of diversity and change is manifested in the way we communicate, and as such our communication skills, styles and methods become incredibly important to ensure our thoughts, beliefs and opinions are widely and clearly visible and not misunderstood.

Living in the cultural melting pot that is the UAE for the past 15 years, I have had lots of time and experience developing these communications, and there are some key points to remember if you want to ensure clarity and comprehension of your message across cultures, traditions and generations:

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Calm businesswoman relaxing with breath gymnastics

Maintaining Work-Life Balance

As things pick up, and we are all desperate to get the ball rolling again, we’re probably putting in more hours than before, and we need to be careful not to fall back into unhealthy work habits.

We all know the importance of a good work life balance – implementing it in practice is somewhat harder – but at a time when our health should be a primary focus, we need to ensure we are doing everything we can to look after ourselves and others, and that means trying to avoid work burnout, overwhelming stress and bad lifestyle habits.

So how do successful and happy people achieve and maintain their work-life balance? There are four tips which successful people seem to share:

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Stop start social: How pausing communications can damage your business

So it’s been a while… Almost a month in fact… Isn’t it crazy how the time flies by? So much has been happening across work and personal lives, that writing a blog post and doing my own social media and communications has been the lowest priority and therefore neglecting whilst attending to more urgent and higher priority issues.

I know from my own personal experiences and my work with clients, that this is the case for most of us, we prioritise our clients, colleagues, our work partners, friends and family, before focussing on ourselves.

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2020-05-12 16.59.46-1

My personal pillars of mental health

With the advent of World Mental Health Day this weekend, I know a lot of people are getting involved in the conversation around mental health and wellbeing, and whilst this is not my area of expertise per se, like most of us it’s been an increasingly important area of focus for me over the past few years, and particularly these last few months.

Rather than simply jumping on the bandwagon, I wanted to try and share some of the mechanisms I have adopted to improve my mental wellbeing, those which have been particularly useful to me during this year of change and uncertainty.

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Translate or not: Should social media pages be bilingual?

In recognition of International Translation Day on Wednesday, we thought it might be a good time to answer one of the most common questions we get during our social media workshops here in Dubai: Should you translate your social media posts and share both on the same pages/profiles?

Before we respond to this question, it’s worth remembering that there is no standard approach that all brands should be using – if only it were that easy! You have to get to know your audience really well and know what works best for them, and for your brand.

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