Why friendly types should reconsider office hugs

Anton Duvall, FCMA, CGMA

Each week, we delve into the reading lists of finance professionals around the world. This week, we hear from Anton Duvall, FCMA, CGMA, the CFO of the Americas division of Siemens Building Technologies. Here is a sampling of content that has resonated with him:

  • "Do You Have to Avoid Huggers at Work?": Duvall said this article from the BBC gave him more insight than he thought it would upon seeing the headline. Some surveys show that hugging in the office was becoming a more common practice. In his words, "being British and quite reserved", Duvall has worked in numerous locations around the world. He is certain that hugs or other forms of greeting are not welcome in various cultures.
  • "Why Good Leaders Make You Feel Safe": Simon Sinek's TED Talk that focused on US Army Capt. William Swenson appealed to Duvall because it encouraged what Duvall called "ownership culture". Safety and ownership go hand in hand, Duvall said, because those two feelings "encourage employees to go outside of strict guidelines to do the 'right thing' for the customer — without fear".
  • "How Effective Is Your Organization's Performance Management Approach?": Duvall recently completed annual performance reviews, so this article stood out because it presented a fresh approach, with an emphasis on improving performance and not achieving a once-a-year passing grade. "Interactive, ongoing discussions as a coach or leader sounds more rewarding to managers and employees than an annual monitoring and scoring exercise," Duvall said.

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