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Archive for the ‘Organizational Health & Assessment’ Category

Thumbnail : Values: Why To Hire and Why To Fire

Values: Why To Hire and Why To Fire

The values of an organization get a bad rap.  Usually they come after the prestigious mission and vision, don’t receive the proper time to be fully developed and are rarely used for what they were designed for.  At times they can be characterized as the ‘fluffy’ stuff or the ‘human interest’ piece of an organization […]

Thumbnail : Trending: Employee Engagement (If not now, soon)

Trending: Employee Engagement (If not now, soon)

Every so often we try to take a step back here at New Directions and analyze the landscape of organizational development.  Where are we at and where are we all going?  What will we be talking about in 3-5 years? What do our clients need to know today to prepare for tomorrow? These are some […]

Thumbnail : Corporate Training Soars – Here’s What It Means

Corporate Training Soars – Here’s What It Means

In February, Josh Bersin of Forbes Magazine wrote an interesting article on training and development titled, Spending on Corporate Training Soars: Employee Capabilities Now a Priority.  In the piece he took a look at the recent 2014 Corporate Learning Factbook study and did a pretty good job analyzing and summarizing the key parts.  We thought […]

Thumbnail : Why Change When Things Have Been Successful in the Past?

Why Change When Things Have Been Successful in the Past?

We recently began work with a fortune 1000 company whose sales have quadrupled over the past four years and who now boasts a more than 6,000 employee workforce. Despite that enormous growth and success, the company is deciding to make massive changes within its culture and the way it conducts business. Why? Why change when […]

Thumbnail : What Employees Really Want to Know that Only Leadership Can Answer

What Employees Really Want to Know that Only Leadership Can Answer

Every organization today is going through some sort of change, whether it’s technological, growth, diversification, globalization, or just the transformation of the workforce generations.  Employees are expected to adapt quickly to leadership demands for increased accountability, cross-training, adaptability during restructuring, and constant change.  I recently told a group of employees, “Just get yourself on the […]

Thumbnail : ‘Eliminate Managers?’ Asks Inc. Magazine.  Our Expert Opinion on Flat Organizations.

‘Eliminate Managers?’ Asks Inc. Magazine. Our Expert Opinion on Flat Organizations.

Inc.  Magazine recently had a feature titled Eliminate Managers? CEOs Who’ve Tried It Explain Why It Works.  In the article they discuss the ‘no manager’ org chart and moving organizations from towering hierarchical structures to leaner, flatter structures.   Some of the notables who are attempting this include Zappos, education platform Treehouse, video game company Valve […]

Thumbnail : Creating a Culture of Yes

Creating a Culture of Yes

I recently had a couple of unique brainstorming sessions with a good friend of mine.  Afterwards, he mentioned how much he appreciated my ability to hear his vision and bounce ideas around with him.  I thought nothing of it – I love new ideas and expanding upon thoughts.  But for him, it was a me […]

Thumbnail : Really Simple, Yet Practical Things We Can Do In Training To Make Sure That Learning, Engagement And Growth Is Occurring

Really Simple, Yet Practical Things We Can Do In Training To Make Sure That Learning, Engagement And Growth Is Occurring

The numbers seem the same.  The 2013 State of the Industry (Training) numbers seem similar to what we’ve seen in the past – billions of dollars spent on training employees.  Instructor-led classroom remains at the top of the delivery list at 54%, but continues to spiral downward as companies look for the cheap and easy […]

Thumbnail : Obama’s New Manufacturing Hub and What Future Manufacturing Actually Needs To Be Successful

Obama’s New Manufacturing Hub and What Future Manufacturing Actually Needs To Be Successful

President Obama announced this week the creation of a manufacturing and innovation institute in Raleigh, North Carolina that will be led by North Carolina State University. The new innovation hub is part of a larger effort to create a national network of manufacturing innovation sites. “For decades we’ve been losing manufacturing jobs. But now our manufacturers have added over the last four […]

Thumbnail : These Aren’t Predictions or a Top 10 List. These are Focusing Points We Plan To Embrace In 2014

These Aren’t Predictions or a Top 10 List. These are Focusing Points We Plan To Embrace In 2014

We’re not sure what next year will bring.  We hope great business success, new technology to add to our services and new insight and key relationships to grow and expand our organization.   These aren’t predictions (a usual buzzword around this time of year), but rather vital ‘focusing points’ that we think are important, game-changing and […]

Thumbnail : The Decision To Be Thankful – 5 Ways To Look At This Past Year

The Decision To Be Thankful – 5 Ways To Look At This Past Year

As we celebrate another Thanksgiving in the US, we look back on the past year and, in many cases, see only the frustrations, hurdles, and challenges we’ve experienced as a nation and in our businesses and organizatins.  For many, the government shutdown in September symbolized the difficulties of the past year and exactly how much […]

Thumbnail : Managing Organizational Change:  Lou Deepe Talks About His Experience with New Directions

Managing Organizational Change: Lou Deepe Talks About His Experience with New Directions

GUESTBLOGGER: Lou Deepe is the Director of Strategic Development at Wildwood Programs, a non-profit agency who’s mission it is to empower and enable children and adults with neurologically based learning disabilities, autism and other developmental disorders to live independent, productive and fulfilling lives.   Whenever you commit to participating in a workshop or attending a […]

Thumbnail : Strategic Planning: Just Fanning the Fire or Planning for Transformational Ignition?

Strategic Planning: Just Fanning the Fire or Planning for Transformational Ignition?

Are your strategic planning sessions too complicated?  Do you even hate the phrase FMEA or Risk Analysis?  When you think of the future, is everyone aligned to the 1-month plan…the 1-year plan…or the 3-year plan?  Is there even a plan? At this point in many leaders’ daily activities, 95% of their time is most likely […]

Thumbnail : Catch the Flu? No, Catch Engagement, Positivity, & Goal Achievement

Catch the Flu? No, Catch Engagement, Positivity, & Goal Achievement

Well, it happens like clockwork – school starts and about 3 weeks later, my daughter ends up at the doctor’s office. Then the next question is: have you gotten your flu shot yet? (If not, the billboards and road signs will certainly get your attention.) Oh yes, it’s that time of year! Today, we are […]

Thumbnail : 7 Things to Make Your Next Strategic Retreat and Discussion Actually Produce Something

7 Things to Make Your Next Strategic Retreat and Discussion Actually Produce Something

Jeremie Kubicek, well-known blogger, author and speaker in the leadership circuit, recently wrote a post about strategic retreats. Here’s what he said, “…what I have noticed is that most people come into the retreats like they come into a 10AM meeting – not prepared and a bit frazzled.” Does that seem like it’s the case […]

Thumbnail : Baseball Commissioner Finally Executes a “Survival of the Hive” Strategy for the Sport

Baseball Commissioner Finally Executes a “Survival of the Hive” Strategy for the Sport

In the wake of this week’s suspension of 13 professional baseball players for alleged use of performance-enhancing drugs, including All-Star Alex Rodriguez, baseball historians are suggesting that it is “finally time for action to be taken.”  In 2003 the first baseball drug testing identified 104 players who tested positive, but no actions were taken against […]

Thumbnail : What Kind of Organizational Culture Do You Have?  Would you call it Healthy?

What Kind of Organizational Culture Do You Have? Would you call it Healthy?

Everyone plays a role in defining an organization’s culture.  Culture is a compilation of values, principles, beliefs, and actions that ultimately define how an organization works.  Many organizations today use words like efficiency, excellence, customer-oriented and lean to describe their cultures.  Here’s an important question:  would we add the word healthy to that mix?  As […]

Thumbnail : STRATEGY: Values for Hire

STRATEGY: Values for Hire

In a 2012 study from the Center for American Progress, they reviewed 11 research papers and 30 case studies on employee retention, and concluded that it costs businesses about one-fifth of a worker’s salary to replace that worker. This includes direct costs such as:   Separation costs (exit interviews, severance pay, higher unemployment taxes); Costs […]

Thumbnail : TALENT MANAGEMENT: Forming an Incubator and Accelerator Program to Foster the Next Generation of Leaders within Your Organization

TALENT MANAGEMENT: Forming an Incubator and Accelerator Program to Foster the Next Generation of Leaders within Your Organization

Next week I present Preparing for Tomorrow’s Talent Gap at the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) Talent Management Conference in Las Vegas.   I believe this presentation peaked SHRM’s interest because of the humongous challenge that organizations face in the next 5 to 10 years as Baby Boomers fade out, Gen X steps into the role of […]

Thumbnail : WORKPLACE CULTURE: 4 Steps to Building a Culture of Accountability in the Workplace

WORKPLACE CULTURE: 4 Steps to Building a Culture of Accountability in the Workplace

Accountability seems to be the focus of most organizations these days.  How do we get employees to take more accountability for their actions?  What can we do, as leaders, to engender a culture of accountability in our workplaces?  Why do some people thrive on accountability, while others avoid it at all costs? Let’s take a […]

Thumbnail : SURVEYING: Beyond SurveyMonkey – Critical Questions To Ask Before Sending Out a Survey

SURVEYING: Beyond SurveyMonkey – Critical Questions To Ask Before Sending Out a Survey

Wiki contends that Survey Monkey had 14 million users in 2012. If you are nodding your head in agreement, you won’t be surprised that since its business launch in 2009, Survey Monkey has become a household name. Here at New Directions, we have been conducting surveys for close to twenty years; everything from designing and […]

Thumbnail : STRATEGY: Focus – Using the 20-Mile March to Maintain Focus in Your Organization

STRATEGY: Focus – Using the 20-Mile March to Maintain Focus in Your Organization

It seems in this day and age with an app for everything, or a new leadership book that tells you how to be great in under 100 pages, or a pithy, quick, 10 step blog (yes we’re guilty of all them too) – we still struggle to move the needle on actually getting anything done.  […]

Thumbnail : TESTIMONIAL: The Value of Deborah Mackin

TESTIMONIAL: The Value of Deborah Mackin

Christopher Quinn of The Vascular Group speaks candidly about Deborah Mackin and why he trusts in her expertise and services.

Thumbnail : CUSTOMER SERVICE: Back to the Basics – Principles of Quality Customer Service

CUSTOMER SERVICE: Back to the Basics – Principles of Quality Customer Service

Thinking about my blog topic for this week, I began to search for the newest and most innovative thoughts on customer service. Who has written a new book? Is there a new catch phrase out there? Then I stopped myself. The keys to exceptional customer service are action steps, not gimmicks. What sets you and […]

Thumbnail : SOCIAL MEDIA: How to Gain Buy In For A Social Media Initiative within Your Organization

SOCIAL MEDIA: How to Gain Buy In For A Social Media Initiative within Your Organization

Social Media isn’t the problem, it’s the solution.  But how do you convince other people of that, especially senior staff? 24% of consumers who had unsatisfactory service interactions shared their experiences through social networks in 2010, a 50% increase over 2009. 50% of consumers give a brand only one week to respond to a question before they stop doing […]

Thumbnail : STRATEGY: An Extra Dose of Courage When Dealing with Personal and Organizational Values

STRATEGY: An Extra Dose of Courage When Dealing with Personal and Organizational Values

There are two types of values that affect your day-to-day life, especially when that life involves working for a living. Personal and workplace values help guide you when it comes to making decisions or dealing with conflict. Personal values are the standards to which you hold yourself to, like moral and ethics. Whereas workplace values […]

Thumbnail : GENERATIONS IN THE WORKPLACE: Harrington Speaks with ASTD about the Millennial Worker

GENERATIONS IN THE WORKPLACE: Harrington Speaks with ASTD about the Millennial Worker

Vermont ASTD had a chance to catch up with keynoter Matt Harrington prior to his keynote address on engaging the millennial generation on January 31, 2013 at The Professionals Collaborative Networking Event in South Burlington, VT.  

Thumbnail : GENERATIONS: How to Excite and Engage the Millennial Generation to Join Your Nonprofit Association

GENERATIONS: How to Excite and Engage the Millennial Generation to Join Your Nonprofit Association

Next week I present at The Professionals Collaborative (TPC) January meeting on how to excite, engage and motivate the millennial generation specifically in an association/non-profit world.  This is a group of organizations that represent many of the associations or non-profits in the workplace development field.  It being a new year, I thought it would be […]

Thumbnail : STRATEGY: How Strong Shared Values Will Transform the 2013 Organization

STRATEGY: How Strong Shared Values Will Transform the 2013 Organization

Last month I was working with a great management team in a small plant that is part of a larger Fortune 500 business.  We were exploring how to re-energize a teaming initiative that had started years before, but took a pause after some staffing changes had occurred.  I had interviewed a number of employees about […]

Thumbnail : 28th Anniversary Video – Still Going In New Directions

28th Anniversary Video – Still Going In New Directions

Employee training and development firm New Directions of North Bennington, Vermont celebrates its 28th year of business on July 18th 2012. The firm was started in 1984 by Deborah Mackin.  

Thumbnail : QUALITY: New Directions Designs Event Focused On Quality

QUALITY: New Directions Designs Event Focused On Quality

A 3-minute video highlighting an event that we helped to conceptualize, design and facilitate. This one day event kicked-off a strategic initiative focused on quality and continuous improvement with excitement and commitment.   Looking to jump start your quality initiative?  Not sure where to start?  Download our FREE Quality Problem-Solving Tool Kit as a road […]

Thumbnail : Season’s Greetings from the New Directions Team

Season’s Greetings from the New Directions Team

Hope you all have a very healthy holiday season, a Merry Christmas, and a happy New Year!      

Thumbnail : DECISION MAKING: Group Decision Making – The Decision Making Tree

DECISION MAKING: Group Decision Making – The Decision Making Tree

Deborah Mackin discusses how to determine the level of authority one has to make decisions within an organization.  She uses the metaphor of the Decision Making Tree to help frame the question. Be sure to check out our Decision Making Workshop  

Thumbnail : QUALITY MANAGEMENT: Process Efficiency Workshop – BB:C & Goal Setting

QUALITY MANAGEMENT: Process Efficiency Workshop – BB:C & Goal Setting

Michael Harrington and Deborah Mackin of New Directions Consulting talk about some of the common principles in their Process Efficiency workshop, the Belief: Behavior Connection and Goal Setting.  

Thumbnail : IN THE NEWS: Welcome to the New Website by the President

IN THE NEWS: Welcome to the New Website by the President

Deborah Mackin, founder and president of New Directions Consulting since its birth in 1984, welcomes visitors to the new website.

Thumbnail : TEAMING: The Road to Top-Notch Teaming (Bright Ideas Conference)

TEAMING: The Road to Top-Notch Teaming (Bright Ideas Conference)

This is an interview conducted with Lisa Dunbar of New Directions Consulting after she presented: The Road To Top-Notch Teaming at the 2010 Bright Ideas Conference at Siena College.

Thumbnail : 25 Year Gift from New Directions

25 Year Gift from New Directions

Deborah Mackin, President and Founder of New Directions Consulting, speaks to us on the starting of her business and her recent gift to the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber Entrepreneurial Boot Camp program.

Thumbnail : New Directions' Presentation Skills Training

New Directions' Presentation Skills Training

Michael Harrington, Director of New Training and Strategic Initiatives at New Directions, trains on Presentation Skills. New Directions, with over 25 years of service, provides more than 50 employee development and high-performance leadership programs to large and small organizations alike.

Thumbnail : Crisis Management to Controlled Management

Crisis Management to Controlled Management

Lisa Dunbar of New Directions Consulting presenting the CMtoCM presentation at the Albany-Colonie Chamber of Commerce February 17th 2010

Thumbnail : Becoming a Change Champion in Your Organization

Becoming a Change Champion in Your Organization

Deborah Mackin, international trainer and coach, discusses with a leadership summit group how to become change champions in their own organizations.

Thumbnail : Social Media As a Catalyst for Growth

Social Media As a Catalyst for Growth

In July, New Directions Consulting (in partnership with Hemmings Motor News) unveiled their new services in social media training and consulting. Michael Harrington, Director of New Training and Strategic Initiatives and Matthew Harrington, Marketing Manager, both of New Directions Consulting, brought 40 business leaders through an obstacle course of social media, training and teaching along […]

Thumbnail : In-House Training Teams

In-House Training Teams

Deborah Mackin presenting on In-House Training Teams at the 14th annual ASTD conference.

Thumbnail : At the ASTD Conference 2009

At the ASTD Conference 2009

  The New Directions Team is at the 14th Annual ASTD Conference – Deborah Mackin and Michael Harrington Report

Partnering with the Capital & Saratoga Region

As a region poised to be the next tech hub of the nation, New Directions is ready and able to meet the needs of the surrounding tech, manufacturing and service industries.

Thumbnail : CONFLICT RESOLUTION: The Red Converse Sneakers and the Ladder of Inference

CONFLICT RESOLUTION: The Red Converse Sneakers and the Ladder of Inference

Recently, Michael Harrington, our Director of New Training and Strategic Initiatives, presented on the idea that we all make assumptions of people based on their behavior.  Rarely, do we actually go to the root cause of the belief of that behavior and try to solve the behavior if problematic (our Belief: Behavior Connection Model).  Whats more, we […]

Thumbnail : TEAMING: Special Interview with Lisa Dunbar on the 2010 Bright Ideas Conference

TEAMING: Special Interview with Lisa Dunbar on the 2010 Bright Ideas Conference

A special interview with Lisa Dunbar after her presentation: The Road To Top-Notch Teaming at the 2010 Bright Ideas Conference last week (view interview).  

Thumbnail : TRAINING: LIVE from the ASTD Conference 2010

TRAINING: LIVE from the ASTD Conference 2010

  Yesterday Michael Harrington, our Director of New Training and Strategic Initiatives and Matthew Harrington, our Marketing Manager were at the Hudson-Mohawk American Society for Training and Development’s 15th Annual Workplace Learning and Performance Conference.   Michael presented in session 1 on Training the Next Generation: Excite and Engage the Millennial, while Matthew took a look at […]

Thumbnail : SOCIAL MEDIA: You've Got A Friend: NDC trains on social networking at the 2009 Leadership Summit

SOCIAL MEDIA: You've Got A Friend: NDC trains on social networking at the 2009 Leadership Summit

This past week New Directions Consulting had a great opportunity to partner with Hemmings Motor News to present the 2nd Annual Collector Car Leadership Summit. How to capture the interest of the next generation of collector car enthusiasts was the burning question on many of the attendees’ minds. Most of the attendees were CEOs or […]

Who We Are

An innovative training and employee development firm located in southern Vermont since 1984, we specialize in helping organizations get the most out of their people by raising the bar, inspiring potential and partnering with organizations to build a people-centered, high-engagement culture.

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