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Welcome to October’s edition of The Pelorus: a selection of content and research Openside have discovered in the last month – which you may not have seen – which we hope will give you actionable insights that you can use in your own firm. We have written a summary of each article with a link to the full article if you want to read more.


Learning is supposed to feel uncomfortable – Harvard Business Review

“I wouldn’t trust you as a leader if I didn’t see you learning as a participant.”

It is the emotional experience of learning – being a beginner and making mistakes – that can prevent people from trying to learn. However, the emotions felt during learning are merely growing pains as you learn, develop and get better at doing something. To make learning for leaders easier the author, Peter Bregman, suggests they should take risks to try new things, perhaps attend a workshop where they’re not expected to be the expert and have the ‘emotional courage’ to overcome the fear of failure. Bregman says that learning to be comfortable with the discomfort may in fact mean you learn something.


Great relationships start with great client selection: Three filters you should use – Andrew Sobel

What percentage of your most vexing problems are created by just a few of your clients?

Andrew Sobel suggests in order to work with the right clients you need to screen your potential clients using three filters: strategic fit, relational fit and potential impact – each defined according to your own strategy and focus. Sobel suggests a series of questions to test a client’s suitability and asks which of your current clients would meet your criteria if you applied the same filters.


20 signs you’re emotionally mature – YouTube Video by The School of Life

None of us are ever quite emotionally mature but having a list might be a way of keeping score and nudging ourselves in the right direction. This video gives a comprehensive list of what maturity might comprise. Some of our favourites are:

#01 You learn that most of other people’s bad behaviour comes down to fear and anxiety rather than nastiness and idiocy

#10 You see everyone’s weaknesses in character as counterbalancing their strengths

#13 You become more of a friend to yourself

#16 What people, in general, think of you ceases to be a concern

#17 You get better at hearing feedback


What the most productive people keep on their desks – Fast Company

A practical article examining whether items on your desk can impact your productivity either through the stress that clutter brings, or the time wasted trying to find things. Alexis Haselberger says that keeping your desk clear prevents distractions and allows you to focus on the task in hand. Things that shouldn’t be on your desk are mobile phones, as we are so used to mindlessly checking them throughout the day, more surprisingly, neither should ‘to-do’ lists.

“The best way to design a desk that makes you your most productive is to remove everything and add back only what you need and use.”


We hope you find these articles thought-provoking and that, where necessary, they have implications on the way you work within your firm. Please share this email with any of your clients or colleagues whom you think may benefit – there is a link to subscribe to ‘The Pelorus’ below.

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