Learning Technologies Newsletter

ISSUE 109 - August 2014 - by Phil Chambers

TIME TO READ: 4 minutes (Average Reader), less than a minute (Speed Reader) - Word Count: 993 To learn more about Speed Reading Contact us or read my book ‘Brilliant Speed Reading’.

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Welcome to the August issue of The Learning Technologies Newsletter. Please continue to forward it to friends and colleagues who you think would find it useful.

This month we have a story about the importance of a good memory in corporate life, plus our regular features of Quote of the month, Mind Map Tip and What I’m up to.


August's Quote of the Month

"For the best return on your money,
pour your purse into your head."

~ Benjamin Franklin

[My course is all about investing in your 'head']

More quotes here


Mind Map Top Tip of the Month

Size your lettering appropriately for its level in the hierarchy of a Mind Map. Main branches have larger lettering than second level branches and so on, decreasing as you move out from the centre. Likewise use bold CAPITALS for the main branches and lower case towards the periphery of the Mind Map.

101 Top Tips for Better Mind Maps

What's Phil Up To?

Phil Chambers

This month I will be doing individual coaching on the use of Mind Maps to organise your time and create winning presentations.

I will also be running a Speed Reading master-class for a small group in London.

August sees the UK Open Memory Championships that I am busily preparing the papers for. This year we have nine languages and over 20 competitors from all over Europe. Excitingly the event will be televised live by our hosts TV Apex.

I am working on preparations and promotion for my course, “Easy Steps to Memory Mastery” the first of which will be run in September. If you are serious about personal development you should book your place.


A Tale of Two Executives

Mr Adams and Mr Brown are two ambitious, conscientious middle-managers in large organisation. Adams understands how memory works and uses appropriate mnemonics whereas Brown doesn’t. Here’s a tale of how their lives differ…

Executives pictures

Monday morning:

Adams arrives at work on time. He says good morning to the receptionist calling her by name. Taking the lift, he sees a couple of colleagues and has a pleasant conversation, chatting about their families. He comfortably recalls their own as well as their spouse’s and children’s names.

Brown arrives five minutes late as he had to spend time searching for his keys. Bustling past the front desk and fumbling for his security pass, he has no time for pleasantries. In the lift he stares at his feet avoiding eye contact with people that he recognises but can’t quite place.

Arriving at his office, Mr Brown switches on his PC and logs into Outlook. He sees to his surprise that he has an important meeting that should have already started so grabs his notebook and some papers and rushes off.

Mr Adams remembered that he was going to the meeting so sorted out the relevant material on the train into work. He read the minutes of the previous meeting with relevant background and memorised key points. When he got into work he just picked up a cup of coffee from the vending machine and headed straight to the meeting room, relaxed and confident.

In the meeting Adams is able to make pertinent comments backed up with facts and figures while Brown fumbles through is pile of papers searching for the page where he’s scribbled his notes. Meeting over and action points agreed, all the managers head back to their respective offices.

On the way back to his office Adams bumps into his boss. “I’ve been meaning to call you”, he says. The boss asks Mr Adams if he can get some data to him that afternoon. Adams adds this to his mental to-do list in his head and agrees. Brown has a similar encounter but without his diary with him, he promptly forgets.

Throughout the day Adams has a clear plan in his head of what needs to be done and when. He can move from one task to the next confidently knowing that he will hit his deadlines and targets. Brown is more chaotic, jumping in an out of different projects. He is very busy all day but spends lots of time reacting to situations that, had he not overlooked, could have been dealt with before they escalated. As a result, Adams leaves promptly at 5pm with a tidy desk. He gets home to spend time with his wife and children. Brown is still working at 7pm – Another bedtime missed for his son.

One Month Later:

It is appraisal time. Both Adams and Brown have their efficiency measured against deliverables and with input from colleagues and subordinates. It is clear that both work hard and are committed to their job but Adams gets more done and has a happier team whist Brown is starting to feel corporate-burn-out through more stress, too many late nights and loss of focus.

The company is going thought a slightly rocky patch. They have lost a big order to a competitor and are struggling to keep market share. Redundancies are on the cards. When evaluating who to let go and who to keep would you choose Adams or Brown?

Do you sometimes feel like the downtrodden Mr Brown, running from one thing to the next? Some simple memory techniques can give you the professional edge, better perspective, more time and freedom saving you from stress, maintaining your health, sanity and enjoyment of life’s challenges. You can learn Easy Steps to Memory Mastery on my upcoming course.

Don’t you owe it to yourself to invest a weekend in your future?

Memory Advert

That's all for this month. Look out for the next edition in September.

Best Wishes