Chris Markiewicz's Blog
Every Monday – thoughts, observations and ideas that hold up a mirror to who & how we are

Posts Tagged ‘Engagement

William at the Oasis

February 24, 2014

He’s there almost every day by the Oasis. Almost always smiling. Almost always engaging with anyone who passes by. Almost always talking some kind of good natured nonsense. And, his voice carries, so you can usually hear him from a fair distance as you approach. William  is a customer of the Oasis – a café […]

Shocking Phil

June 3, 2013

Just a few days ago I declared to a man called Phil that he was the most important person in my life, at that moment.  He was certainly taken aback!  And, indeed  you may think: “ Goodness me – has Chris taken a liking to a potential new, male life partner and thinking of abandoning Ingrid and […]

Ripples

December 10, 2012

At the end of a particularly fun day’s work a few weeks back, I was saying goodnight to the security guard in the reception where the course had taken place. My cheeky chappy self was very much in evidence and we had a playful, jokey exchange. As I left the building, I spotted him through […]

What are you missing out on?

October 8, 2012

“[Pippa] wonders what the new DG would have said had he been allowed to finish a sentence or two.” This slightly cryptic looking sentence was a post written on Facebook a few weeks back by a buddy of mine. She was referring to a radio interview that morning with the new Director General of the […]

An unrecognised pleasure

July 2, 2012

A few days ago, Ingrid my partner and I were engaged in a rather heated discussion. It was going nowhere, apart from perhaps downhill. And then…..….. I can’t identify precisely what she said or how she said it but I suddenly understood her point of view. It’s like something clicked and I let go of […]

Laughed out loud

February 6, 2012

A couple of weeks back I fulfilled a long standing ambition. It was an unusual ambition, quirky even, but one that was quite significant to me. I succeeded in getting three people in a room together – they had never before occupied the same space at the same time Those three people were Ingrid, my […]

Fraud?

January 29, 2012

This Sunday morning as I write this, I’m actually in a bad mood, pissed off or however else you may wish to put it. Part of the reason actually stems from feedback that I get to these blogs. Now, you may think that I must be referring to negative feedback. Actually I’m not. I have […]

A boardroom full of dentists

January 16, 2012

Some years back, I was invited to run some negotiation skills training for the remuneration committee of the British Dental Association (BDA). Now, like many people, the word dentist has somewhat negative associations for me. I still shudder to this day recalling Mr Kocins, my childhood dentist glaring down at me as I sat, quaking […]

Lo siento

January 9, 2012

Some of you reading this will recognise the title of this week’s post as the Spanish term for “I apologise”. However, the phrase, in its literal form has a subtly different meaning. The words “lo siento” actually translate as “I feel it”. Somehow, to me it comes across as a far more heartfelt and empathic […]

The show goes on, with a little help……

December 19, 2011

I guess it had to happen sooner or later.It’s Monday morning and I feel like death warmed up. In fact, I’ve been pretty much out of commission for several days now. So much so that I simply haven’t had it in me to write a new blog piece this week.  However, rather than leave you, […]

Melly in an alley

December 5, 2011

George Melly, the jazz musician died a couple of years ago. I can’t say that I’m that familiar with his music, although one claim to fame is that his former drummer lives next door to me.  I once heard a great story about Mr Melly. He was doing a gig up in Manchester. There happened […]

Open for business?

November 21, 2011

   The other evening I was noodling around on my PC and popped into Twitter for the first time in weeks. I came across a link to a blog written by a guy in the States called Scott Ginsberg. I lazily started half reading the post and then a paragraph jumped out at me:  And […]

All right

October 31, 2011

How are you today? No, I mean it. How are you? Really? I find it amazing how this enquiry can fall off peoples’ lips scores of times in any day and yet rarely receives a specific or accurate response. It’s as if what should be a genuine, heartfelt enquiry as to someones well-being is so […]

The wisdom of Gareth

October 24, 2011

I am the parent of two teenage children. They’re great kids, but of course I’m biased. Like most parents I wonder about their future, how they’ll make their way through life especially given the increasingly uncertain nature of the world we occupy. I wonder how things will be when they’re in their 20’s, 30’s, 40’s […]

Assertive? Aggressive?

September 26, 2011

One of the most common questions I am asked on courses is:  “What is the difference between assertive and aggressive behaviour?” Although the majority of people who come on assertiveness courses tend  towards the passive/submissive end of the scale, occasionally someone will turn up (usually sent by their manager) because they are too aggressive. Almost […]

From the mouths of babes

September 4, 2011

My partner and children were away a couple of weeks back visiting her mother in Wales. Being as I’m just a boy in grown up clothes,  I grabbed the opportunity to go up the road to the supermarket and stock up on a few “goodies” to help fill the hole left by their absence.  As […]

High performance – its a matter of lubrication

August 22, 2011

We replaced our car a few weeks ago. The venerable old Mercedes had served us well for almost  twelve years, but the time had come to trade it in for something newer and more economical. We  made sure that our “new” car came supplied with evidence of regular servicing – reassurance that it had been cared […]

Talk to strangers? I should be so lucky

August 8, 2011

  “There are no such things as strangers, only friends we haven’t met yet”  Anon  I have recently found myself talking to strangers.  As a youngster I was always told not to do so, that it was potentially dangerous and could lead to awful outcomes. Wise advice for a child to heed. The main catalyst […]

“You make me……”

August 1, 2011

Just for a change, this week’s blog post kicks off with a quiz. All you need to do is identify who originally performed each of the songs listed below. Additionally, can you spot the odd one out? Answers appear at the end of this post. The way you make me feel You make me feel mighty […]

Are you mis-using your life saver?

July 4, 2011

A few years ago I was doing some errands in Potters Bar, not far from where I live. I stepped off the pavement on the High Street and hadn’t realised that there was a bus just ten feet away from me.  Unfortunately, it was a bus in motion and it was moving towards me, rather […]

I just called…….

June 13, 2011

When’s the last time you picked up the phone to ring someone and said “I just called to say hi, how are you?”  I don’t know about you, but I love a good natter. Yet, I fear that this is an activity that is becoming increasingly rare.  So, what’s happened? Why do many of us natter […]

Adventures with my skinny white friend

June 6, 2011

Firstly, if you are expecting to be appalled by the suggestion that this article is in any way racist or weightist, then I’m afraid you are going to be disappointed. So, who is my skinny white friend? In fact, we’re talking about an inanimate object here, yet one that is my companion, my guide, even […]

Happy

May 30, 2011

I recently picked up what I thought was a lovely idea from a blog I was reading. I am, however, ashamed to say that I can’t recall who’s blog it was otherwise I would include a link.  Anyway, it involves using a simple affirmation that the writer suggested we could utter quietly in our head […]

Crazy? Or crushed spirits?

May 23, 2011

Just over a week ago I gave a talk for a mental health charity in north London. I was asked to talk on the topic of dealing with conflict to a group of about fifty service users. They had come for their regular Friday evening get together to have some food, a cup of tea and […]

Oh no!

May 16, 2011

This week I’m taking you to the flipside.  That is, the flipside of last week’s post. Whilst many of us find it difficult to ask for what we want (as discussed last week), we can also find it equally, if not more challenging to say no.  Too many of us are pleasers. We want to […]

I hate to ask……

May 9, 2011

  “Unless you ask, the answer is already no”  Dutch saying  How easy do you find it to ask for what you want? Do you find yourself getting into the “I wonder whether you’d mind awfully….” kind of patter? Perhaps you end up going round the houses in order to get your needs known or, […]

IQ, EQ – but how’s the TQ?

May 3, 2011

I have been going into organisations for over two decades now, whether to run training programmes, conduct coaching or attend meetings to discuss such matters.  I find that I have developed a “nose” for the kind of organisation I’m visiting or working with and, more specifically how toxic it is.  When I say toxic, I […]

Workplace bullying. Is it really a problem?

April 18, 2011

A few weeks ago we had an addition to our household in the form of Murphy, a collie/labrador cross puppy. Like most puppies, he is full of life and, frankly at times quite a handful but, of course we all love him big time.  Yet, there have been occasions where he has “misbehaved” and I […]

When you’re smiling……

March 7, 2011

  “When you’re smiling, when you’re smiling, the whole world smiles with you” Song lyrics by Mark Fisher / Joe Goodwin / Larry Shay  There’s a lot of truth in those lyrics.The world has an uncanny way of reflecting back what we project.  Just a few days ago, I was pretty grumpy to say the […]

It takes two

February 28, 2011

As a training practitioner and coach I find that I am constantly learning new things myself and I’m sure I will do so for a good many years to come. I learn of course from fellow professionals, from books, the internet and other such sources. However, sometimes a powerful insight can come from a most […]

Oussez

February 7, 2011

Few people will have heard of the relatively obscure Belgian philosopher Pierre Oussez, yet he can provide a significant contribution to improving how we all get on with each other. Before I say more about him I need to explain how his thinking can help most of us. This is probably best illustrated by a […]

The truth about lies?

January 23, 2011

Martin, a former neighbour of mine was summoned to see the headmaster at his ten year old son’s school.  The head came straight out with it: “Your son has been telling lies and we are not happy about that”.  Martin swiftly and firmly replied “If my son is telling lies, he must be afraid. Why […]

I hear what you say…..

November 29, 2010

In the post that I wrote this time last week, much emphasis was put on the importance and value of good listening and how it contributes to building stronger, richer relationships.  Great listening isn’t necessarily about merely doing the listening, but also very much about showing, even proving to the other person that we really […]