Tips and stories to add value to you and your organisation
I’m pretty sure that after early man (or probably early woman) invented fire and then the wheel, third on his list was cake.
It makes sense when you think about it. Cake is sociable. It’s designed to be shared and early man loved nothing more than to sit in front of his fire, admire his wheel and share his new inventions.
Obviously it needed another 3 early men to also invent the wheel, before they had enough to make something useful and perhaps they drew inspiration from cake.
Maybe cake was second on the list, after fire, and as they gazed lovingly at a stone age Victoria sponge someone picked it up and rolled it to the next person, to save having to get up. Ta-dah! The wheel was born!
Despite not being a scholar of mesolithic history I’d bet at least 50p that I’m right.
If you’re going to the trouble of making a cake it makes sense to make a big one and no sense to keep it all to yourself. Sharing is very much the order of the day.
Cake is friendly and comforting. It tends to remind us of childhood and treats on birthdays and of happy times.
You never see a thriller on TV where the evil villain offers the hero a slice of cake before explaining his dastardly plot. Darth Vader didn’t take time off from zapping planets to indulge in a cream horn did he?
No. Cake is safe.
As is coaching. When I started working as a business coach there were many clients who arrived suspicious and worried about what it entailed. Could I read their mind? No. Could I do magic? No. Could I make them do something against their will? No.
(These are all questions I was regularly asked in the early days).
Thankfully people at large are now much more aware of psycho-dynamic development interventions and there has been a big shift from ‘coaching is threatening’ to ‘coaching is going to support my development, so bring it on.’
However, as with all searching conversations people like to be at their ease.
This brings us back to cake. Instead of sitting in a blank office I often take clients out of their organisation’s building and we walk to a cafe and enjoy a quiet slice of cake whilst we work.
The walking bit is good too. It’s a useful displacement activity and along with maybe a muffin each, we can explore new ideas and overcome obstacles in a friendly and engaging environment.
So, this week, if you’re a bit stuck, or need to talk to a colleague about something important then consider adding in cake to the equation.
We can all take a tip from early man and enjoy sharing our thinking with a slice of sponge to calm our nerves and stimulate a formal conversation in an informal way.
If you’ve been affected by this post and have a sudden craving for a chocolate eclair, or a slice of date and walnut, then pop out and treat yourself!
Coaching + cake = happy and successful coaching. And that’s my recipe for success.
Next week: Always Ask!
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