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11th Sep, 2011

JCI European Academy 2011 – Was the TIME of my LIFE!
by James Mitchell on September 11, 2011 18:44


Blog » academy.jpgJCI Cambridge committee member, Lisa Bredahl Thomsen, recently attended the JCI European Academy in Sweden. She explains what the Academy is, why she enjoyed it so much and why you should go next year:

One of the best decisions I have made in my life was to go to the JCI European Academy in Gothenburg, Sweden this summer.

You are probably wondering how I can say it was one of the the best decisions of my life? Well, you experience intense training at the JCI European Academy. You learn that every single minute is about you and your choices.

You will learn new things about yourself and the people you work with. By being able to understand people, what motivated the and why they do things the way they do, you will know how to motivate and inspire them.

At the JCI Academy you also have the opportunity to use your own leadership skills and styles in a "safe" environment, with great feedback and support from your team-mates. This focusses you on your ability to do a great job; not focus on yourself but concentrate on getting the very best from the person you are dealing with.

Besides developing your own skills, you also get to experience all your team-mates leadership styles, and understand the importance in being able to adapt different styles. You will understand the team's development process, its strengths and weaknesses, in order to get the most out of the team.

In the Academy you also strengthen relationships with colleagues across JCI Europe. You meet around 100 inspiring people from Chapters all over Europe. These include future JCI leaders on a local, national and international level.

The skills learnt at the academy can be used in many scenarios; at JCI,  at work, and on a personal level. It will equip you with the skills to develop great opportunities for the future.

It's YOUR choice to make the best out of YOUR life!


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3rd Sep, 2011

Are you in the right job? Well, JCI Cambridge members found out...
by James Mitchell on September 3, 2011 22:20


Blog » sharon Ferguson Thomas International.jpgOne of our guest speakers this year has been Sharon Ferguson from Thomas International. Sharon presented a workshop to help JCI Cambridge members decide if they were in the correct job, or not!

The workshop consisted of behavioural questionnaires identifying their personality traits and Sharon provided individual feedback to all attendees. Sharon explains what the tests are and how the workshop with JCI Cambridge went:

Formerly a Personnel and Training Manager with a large Blue chip company, my passion has always been in developing people to be the best they can be.

After several years in a variety of H.R. positions, I wanted a new challenge and moved into a Regional Sales Managers Position for Sainsbury's Bank. Finding I had a natural flair and ability to develop people to achieve excellent sales results I realized that I had been stifling my natural talents and amending my behaviour to be successful in my previous career. But, it was much easier to achieve results in a role, which aligned my preferred behaviour and strengths.

I joined Thomas International in 2009 as a Business Consultant covering East Anglia with responsibility for developing a portfolio of clients across, Cambridge, Norfolk and Suffolk.

Thomas International helps clients recruit, retain, develop and manage their people. We'll give you insight into your staff - what motivates them, their core strengths and limitations, and their potential. And we'll add a high level of certainty to all your people-related decisions.

Thomas is different because our assessments are straightforward to understand and quick to use, with rapid results. 

I tell people their PPA (Personal Profile Analysis) is the most important piece of information they have ever received. It is like holding up a mirror it really helps people to understand their behaviour and how others perceive them. By improving self-awareness PPA gives individuals the opportunity to make choices about their behaviour.

PPA gives an accurate overview of an individual's work behavioural preferences and describes it in terms of four opposing factors:

D = Dominance, I = Influence, S = Steadiness, and C = Compliance.

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It assesses an individual's behaviour in the work environment and can answer questions such as: what are their strengths and limitations? Are they self-starters? How do they communicate? What motivates them?  Providing a valuable insight into what careers might be suitable choices.

Once aware of the DISC profile this can be used in a personal capacity to identify characteristics and aid personal communication.

As a high I Influence my preferred approach to Sales is via networking, this is where I met Jo Evans from Emerald Frog Marketing, committee member for JCI Cambridge. Jo asked me to undertake a presentation to members to increase awareness of their personality types and strengths and limitations.

The presentation evening was extremely enjoyable proving to be a very interactive workshop, with lots of positive energy and questions from the members.

For more information on Thomas International visit:

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