People management: pure magic

In this blog post I’m doing things a little different. I’m writing in English. You probably wonder why. Well, this blog post is going to be about people management, and since this is a topic everyone should be able to learn about I decided to write it in English. Clever as she is, Dorien Vullers offered to give an Expert Class about the topic. Are you curious yet? 

Johari window

The first thing to think through is definitely the Johari window. Though it might sound like some hocus pocus, it’s actually very simple and meaningful. It’s based on four quadrants:

  1. Open arena
  2. Hidden arena
  3. Blind spot
  4. Unknown arena


I’d like to highlight two quadrants. Let’s start with the hidden arena, which means that you don’t always show everything to everyone. Yet, this doesn’t mean it’s not there somewhere. Then your blind spot. That’s something what others see in you, but you can’t see it yourself. The ideal situation here is to keep your blind spot as little as possible.

No Redbull needed to energize

When working with people, you’d want to keep the energy level high. But that’s not the only reason for using energizers. They also come in handy when you’re working with a new group of people and you’d like them to become acquainted. Or as a warm up, or to connect on a different level. Eager to learn about some energizers? Here they come:

  • Big fat pony: The participants are standing in a circle and the guide is standing in the middle of the circle. He starts to teach the others a song. While singing he is also depicting the song with gestures and movements. One by one the other participants have to follow his example. The goal of this energizer is to exercise and to experience a group feeling.
  • Animal sounds: The participants each get an animal sound they’ll have to imitate and during the exercise they’ll have to find the other participants with the same animal sound. The objective of this exercise is to experience connectivity and to work together.
  • People chain: One participant begins by naming two of his characteristics. When someone else feels like one of the characteristics also fits him, he can give the first participant a hand and name two other characteristics to keep the chain going. The aim of this exercise is to get acquainted and to experience connectivity.


Of course, there are many more, but it’s always a good idea to check whether you will be able to achieve your objective with a certain energizer. Another thing to consider is the size of the group and the expected behaviour. Pick wisely.

Mindfulness: a step too far?

An extra exercise to work on in group is mindfulness. For your mindfulness exercise to achieve maximum result, you’d like everyone to participate. But what if some people are rather reluctant or skeptical? Dorien said to ask yourself the questions “What’s in it for them?” and “Why would you like them to participate?”. You can also ask this question in group and let everyone give their opinion. If that doesn’t quite work, another option is to work with an intermediate step and use an energizer to break the ice.



P.S.: Special thanks to Dorien for her Expert Class and for our talk on LinkedIn, which made it far more easy to write this blog post. I found it very interesting and I’ve learned a lot.

Big kisses, Laura


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