When I say “horrific”…

When I say horrific

I watched a young woman on the news recently use the word “horrific” to describe her experience. No this wasn’t a victim of recent terrorist atrocities in Paris, nor was she fleeing the horrors inflicted by Isis or Boko Haram. This was someone who was caught in some very bad weather (by UK standards) and whose travel plans had been disrupted.

Now, I am not for a minute trivialising her experience, I am sure it was hugely inconvenient and must have been frustrating and disappointing for her but it is just one example of where we seem to have lost perspective. If something isn’t “amazing” then it’s “horrific”. We seem to see-saw between two extremes of hyperbole with little to centre us. Expressions like “Weather Bombs” and “Thunder Snow” have appeared recently in relation to the weather but think also of “Black Friday” and “Cyber Monday” in exaggerating the importance of rather mundane events. (Incidentally, a client of mine in retail had someone order goods by telephone on Cyber Monday because he was “avoiding the internet” that day!)

This strikes me as eating away at the core of our resilience and makes me question our capability to put things in perspective and find appropriate language in describing our experience to others.

Thankfully very, very few of us will ever experience genuinely “horrific” events in our lives. We will however experience a range of emotions from ecstasy to sorrow and everything in between.

Leadership and true self-leadership lies in our ability to recognise these emotions for what they are, tend to them appropriately and take action to control the things we can control. Something we continually ask our delegates to do on various programmes we run.

Now you’ll have to excuse me, the forecast is rather frightening for late February so I’m off to load the car with snow shoes, shovels and survival kits.

Posted by John Drysdale
27th February 2015
John's Blog


Liverpool based training company, No Guru is ‘leading in learning’ as the ILM city region hub

North West employers now have access to professional development qualifications for management, team leaders and supervisory staff as Cotton Exchange based training company, No Guru becomes the Liverpool City Region hub for ILM accreditation.


University Contract extended for 2 Years

Leeds Beckett University relationship extended

We are delighted to announce our current contract to provide Staff Training and Team Building to Leeds Beckett University has been extended a further 2 years.

During the next academic year we will be running new programmes around:

  • Strategic Thinking
  • Leading Change
  • Leading & Empowering People
  • Working to Strengths
  • Designing and Delivering Presentations

Additionally we will continue to work with Teams to deliver on the University Strategic Framework as well as completing our first ILM Level 5 Coaching & Mentoring programme for internal ‘Coaching Champions’.

We would like to thank People Development and everyone at Leeds Beckett for making it a great place to work.


NEW: Even more Online Courses

We’re very pleased to announce new additions to our Online Suite of Training Courses.  We have just added:

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  • Effective Delegation
  • Disciplinary Procedures
  • Negotiation

Our course of the week this week is Safeguarding Children.  (more…)


John's Blog

Image Triage – be careful what you post

How to avoid public ‘shaming’

If you’ve ever read Jon Ronson’s book ‘Shamed’, you will know the devastating effect social media can have on people who have posted something stupid on the internet.

Ronson highlights the case of Justine Sacco (a director of corporate communications) who, before boarding an 11-hour flight from Heathrow to Cape Town, Tweeted to her 170 followers what she thought was a series of lighthearted, acerbic comments about her journey. (more…)

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Let’s be kinder to each other in 2017

There is a striking memorial in a park in Indianapolis.  It marks the spot where in April 1968, Robert Kennedy told a waiting crowd that Martin Luther King had been shot and killed, before speaking from the heart and his own personal experience, that violence is never an answer to our grievances.  His calming words quelled the rioting that other cities endured in the days after Dr King’s death and, arguably, saved some lives that night.


The memorial itself is an arresting work of art.  (more…)

Thinking In A World That Doesn’t Think

Arsene Wenger and that letter

A recent item appeared on LinkedIn that made me curious.  You may have seen it.

It purports to show a resignation letter written by a disillusioned employee of Arsenal Football Club, citing his reason for leaving: (more…)