Day thirty-one; Good advice at work

25 Mar


This morning, I remembered giving advice to some young film-makers, long ago, in a bar.

Never give advice in a bar.


Work strikes me as a tricky place to give advice.

Everyone is there doing jobs they have been hired for.

They go about their business knowing that they are being paid for the work that they are doing.


Film-making is not a co-operative art.

You must have a Director, who’s say is final, but a Director who does not listen, often fails.

When I was younger I had a Producer come in from London to help me on a project.

I didn’t listen, and the relationship was ruined.

On the other hand, I listened to advice from his Director friend, and ended up with a product that didn’t turned out as I wanted.


So, when to give advice and when to take it?


When you’re in a position of responsibility, you must manage the effort of others. The product relies on it, your team relies on it.

Trust that your team is commited to the product and are doing their best.

Ask them questions about how to do an aspect of their job, and then ask how they deal with this or that aspect.

Allow the passage of time.

When you return, thank them for taking the time with you, explain to them what your role in the project is, and then suggest to the changes you were thinking, and why.

Ask that they try for a given length of time and tell them that you would very much like a meeting with them and a few others about whether the changes work afterward.

Stop talking until the meeting.

If time is an issue, call a group meeting before you start.

Come having done some research on the jobs that the people you are working with have been doing.

Explain to them what you are responsible for.

Tell them that you have some changes and ask them for permission to try.


I’m giving advice on how to give advice! How quickly it happens!

Starting with a prayer has always worked.

It’s sticky because you must ask permission and you must have a plan for inclusion if you find that objections are raised.

Payer focusses on why the project is important on several levels.

-On its grander reason

-On the individual reasons that people are on it

-On its desired outcome


I wanted to talk about contentment today.


I learned that contented people have a great deal of power.

There is power to inspire in contentment because there is nothing to loose.

There is freedom.


The sermon at church today was on Pauls advice to the churches in Collossians and Ephesians.

I’ve only now realised that the sermon was on giving advice at work.

Appreciate people. Say your piece.


I notice that Jesus is always giving advice, and pointing people to the authority through which he speaks – God

I understand that many people will reject this.


Tonight I am going to ask him to give me advice on staying and growing in love.

I will listen.


“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman…who correctly handles the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)


Posted by on March 25, 2012 in Uncategorized


2 responses to “Day thirty-one; Good advice at work

  1. Paula Tohline Calhoun

    March 27, 2012 at 06:24

    I am still here. I am with you each night at the campfire, and I’m the silent one waking beside you each day. Do not think that I have abandoned you or backing away from our journey. Writing these past few days has been taken up with the poetry I am working on together with another blogger from South Africa. He and I are putting together a collection for publication. I am afraid I am the one who has been delaying it. So much on my plate, and so little time to do any of it justice.

    Still, I feel like our journey is the most important. I will be writing something – perhaps a post for you tomorrow, but don’t know yet whether it will be that or just a comment. In any event it is about the relationship of Lent, Jesus’ 40 days in the desert, and their relationship to Easter. Just my opinion and understanding, but maybe it will give you some of my feelings about it anyway. Believe me, it is not advice. I would like to say I have sworn off giving any. Far be it from me. Besides, that’s what I have my blog for. I can sound authoritative, and no one has to read or listen! 😆

    See you tonight, and tomorrow, and the day after that, and the day after that. . .

    • kolembo

      March 27, 2012 at 07:44

      On Paula!
      Yeah, on advice, all I seem to be doing is GIVING it!
      Almost done now I think, Easter looms, I can’t wait to break bread, take communion.
      See you tomorrow.


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