Never paint your nursery yellow - image for article by Greg Alder

Never paint a nursery yellow

Did you know that people who work in predominantly green environments have fewer stomach aches? Too much exposure to red creates anxiety, increases your heart rate and provokes anger. That’s why you see red. If grey is a dominant colour…

Dear Leo your Linkedin Profile sucks - Greg Alder

Dear Leo, your LinkedIn profile sucks

Imagine it’s 1485. You’re recruiting an artist to paint a mural of the last supper on a monastery wall. A man turns up hoping to get the job. He hands you his business card. It reads Leonardo da Vinci, inventor….

Too many adjectives - image for article by Greg Alder

Too many adjectives

A new apartment building boasts ‘quality Miele appliances’. I guess that’s to differentiate them from the other sort of Miele appliances. A news headline announces, ‘Astronomers set to make groundbreaking black hole announcement’. Is groundbreaking physically possible in a black…

Prisoner of your mind - image for article by Greg Alder

A prisoner of your mind

Two students. Michael believes he was born with the gift of intelligence. He believes his intelligence is fixed and there’s nothing he can do to change that. Tania believes intelligence is a mindset. She feels she has the power to…

Every word a picture - image for article by Greg Alder

Every word a picture

A picture is worth a thousand words. True or false? True in the case of Ikea assembly instructions. How much more difficult would they be without illustrations? False in the case of literature. How often have you been disappointed in…

A finger pointing at the moon

A finger pointing at the moon

There’s a story often told about Buddha instructing a student on the difference between truth and belief. Buddha explains to the student: “My teaching is not a dogma or a doctrine. My teaching is a method to experience reality and…

Do you have the D factor - image for article by Greg Alder

Do you have the D factor?

Before you answer the question, you’ll likely want to know what it is. First up, I can tell you that the D factor isn’t as sexy as the X factor (although sex is sometimes involved). Second, the D factor can…


Soft skills, hard facts

A Canadian documentary on work featured two men who worked for General Motors at the car maker’s plant outside Toronto. One of the men had operated the same machine for 15 years, the other for 17 years. The men had…

The magic kettle - image for article by Greg Alder

The magic kettle

Cameron Meadows looked at the magic kettle in his hands and felt worried. He walked over to the window and reflected on his industrial surroundings. He had always loved beautiful Oxford with its putrid, panicky parks. It was a place…