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In this modern world where technology can give us so many options, we are pushed to be more knowledgeable in our fields and are questioned by our customers more than ever before.  As business owners, we must ensure we have a well-trained team, who are confident, capable and content.  Happy staff makes happy patients in my opinion.  The trick to ensuring effective staff training is to know how your team learn.

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Last week, I completed a TAFE Statement in HR Mentor, Difficult Conversations in the Workplace. It was a great reminder that difficult conversations are sometimes unavoidable in business but with the right approach and planning, they can achieve outcomes that are not necessarily detrimental to your practice.

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Learning is big on my agenda. It was a critical factor in establishing Maida Learning as I believe in the saying "Learn as if you were to live forever" spoken by Gandhi, and learning how to run a great practice was something I was very passionate about. In running a private practice, there are so many learning avenues; from financial, to leadership, marketing to capacity management. One of the best methods I have used to learn in my own practice is through a few failures!

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As an employer, I am always thinking of my team and how I can provide a fulfilling work environment that is profitable, and pays everyone’s wages, whilst also creating a place that fosters good mindfulness in my team members, and prevents burnout. I have felt burnout in my career many years ago, and, going into my own business, I was very determined to never run a workplace where people feel overwhelmed and under appreciated. Here are three ways that I think are a good place to start to prevent burn out in our employees. Even if you don't employ staff, you can apply these concepts to your own setting.

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We had the pleasure of catching up with a friend of Maida Learning, Natasha Ace, in Melbourne yesterday. We are looking forward to a webinar Natasha is presenting for Maida Learning on November 25 and invited her to join the Maida Team as a Guest Blogger. Here is Natasha's blog below:

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If you have joined me over the past couple of weeks as we have explored why difficult conversations are sometimes necessary in the workplace and how to plan for these – today is the big one! How to actually run that conversation.

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Today, I will share with you some tips on how to prepare to have a difficult conversation in your workplace - effective planning can lay a good foundation toward positive outcomes.

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We all know that staff meetings can be a waste of everyone’s time if they are not running well.  No one wants to go to a meeting where the agenda is to work out what is happening at the next meeting – seems pointless. When the day is already packed, you need to make sure your meetings run on time, and you get some action on your items.   

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So, now, we have cleared the clutter from the staff meetings, we need to ensure the meetings are engaging and achieve an outcome.  How?  I wasn’t sure where to start initially, but a few changes I implemented to our own staff meetings really changed the feel and productivity. Here’s what I came up with:

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This is the third piece in our series for renovating your staff meetings.  So far, we have covered how to de-clutter and create some inspiration to get things accomplished.  The final things we need to cover is how to get your staff to contribute, so we can have fire in the bellies.  Icebreakers, team activities, energising games….. whatever you want to call them, work to get individuals out of the gates and prepped for your meeting!

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I have 7 staff members and this year we were awarded the Wagga Wagga business chamber award for employer of choice.  Managing staff is not the easiest thing I have tackled in my career.  I was trained as a clinician, and definitely not trained in managing staff.  Before I started any recruitment, I took myself off to study HR management to ensure I was more likely to get it right, and 6 years on from recruiting my first staff member I feel like finally, I feel confident that I am going ok.  

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