A while back I had the pleasure of spending time Jan Hill, a management consultant. She was facilitating a discussion in my team. One of the many topics that we talked about was Trust, a topic of keen interest to me. She said something that I thought was very profound. She turned trust into a math equation:

Trust = (Credibility + Reliability + Intimacy) / Social Orientation

If you think about it, these are the factors that you consider, maybe at the subconscious level, when determining how much trust you are willing to put into a person. Let’s look at each term briefly.

Credibilitydo you believe this person knows what he or she is doing or talking about? Does the person have the credentials or experience to back the talk? The more credibility you estimate a person to have, the more trust you are willing to extend to them, at least in that subject area.

ReliabilityDoes this person follow through? The person that agrees to deadlines but never follows through and meets those deadlines, we tend to not trust. The more I can depend on you, the more likely I am to trust you.

IntimacyI thought this was an interesting one: intimacy. How close are we? Knowing you very closely versus I just met you definitely has an impact on how much trust I will extend to you. And not just that. Intimacy goes to a whole other level. For example, say I have two friends, both of whom I have known since high school. But one of them I’ve shared deeper experiences with and have received the same. Most likely, I will give a lot more trust to that person because there is more intimacy between us. This also factors in to how we tend to trust people that are “just like me”. Last week I took a quick course from James Whittaker (see my blogs on James – and if you get the chance, you MUST attend The Art of Stage Presence that he offers!!). Among the million other hits out of the ballpark that he made, he touched on this point. Lecturers on presenting will advise you to make points to “connect” to the audience so they feel like you are one of them. James made one key distinction though. Be GENUINE. If you contrive your stories and points of connection in order to be seen as a “nice guy” then you will only connect with other “nice guys”.

Social OrientationThis was the mystery factor. What is social orientation? It’s the why. Why are you doing this? If you know someone is doing an action or taking a stand because they think it will get them further in their career, you will trust them less (or not at all). Whereas the person that takes a stand because they truly believe in it, or that it is the right thing to do, even if we don’t agree with the stance, we will tend to trust that person more.

Of course, there are tons of exceptions to these “rules”. They aren’t meant to be taken as 100% solid, unquestionable. But they do give us very good insight into some of the thought processes that go into assigning trust. And it’s simple. I thought this was brilliant and I wanted to share.

Thanks Jan!!


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Style Promoted Links in your SharePoint site

I had a colleague that wanted to use the Promoted Links webpart on his site as a navigation tool, but he wanted it to display vertically instead of horizontally. So I did some digging around.


Fantastic article!! In minutes, using the tips in this article I was able to make the tiles appear vertically as well as being able to make them appear in rows. I could also resize the tiles, getting exactly the look that I wanted. Check it out and try it for yourself!

Posted in General SharePoint, SharePoint Coding, Web Parts | Leave a comment

How to redirect as page on SharePoint Online (Office 365)

Here’s a common scenario. You’ve created a site in SharePoint and have business users going to it. You know they’ve bookmarked the site. Then, having learned some lessons and new tricks along the way, you create a new and improved site and want people to start going there instead. How to communicate? How can you catch all?

Enter the redirect. It tells the browser, no, don’t go here. You actually need to go there. How can we do this?

Well, it turns out to be incredibly simple (for this use case anyway – there are other scenarios where this solution isn’t a good fit). Go to the page that you want redirected and edit it. Put a script editor web part on the page (found in the content and media group). Click edit snippet. Put in the following:

<script type=”text/javascript”>
window.location=”http://<address of the new and improved site>”

And that’s all there is to it. When I come to the old page, I will be redirected to the new and improved. How easy is that?!

What if I make a mistake and did a typo on the location? Well, that seems like it is a really sucky place to be. When you try going to the page to fix it, before you can stop it, you are redirected to the error message saying page does not exist (or whatever depending on the typo or mistake that you made). So how can I fix the page? This also turns out to be very simple. Type in the url to the page that the redirector is on but follow it with “?Contents=1” and that will take you to a page where you can delete the script editor. Then you can edit the page again, adding the script editor and this time getting the url right! 🙂

These are two valuable tricks that I am awfully glad to have in my toolbox. Special thanks to my friend Kimmo Forss for showing me both of these tricks!!!

Posted in General SharePoint, Web Parts | 2 Comments

What makes a great boss?

Here is another very interesting article that I read on the subject o f being a great leader: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/9-hidden-qualities-only-exceptional-bosses-possess-jeff-haden?trk=pulse-det-nav_art

The author hits some very key points. A lot of it goes back to trust and credibility. As a boss/manager/leader, what is and what is perceived about you? Do you genuinely care and listen to your team? Do you allow them to grow, learning lessons along their progression? Do you seek to understand the why behind actions or simply try to cover things over?

These are the things that separate people who want the “glory and power” of being a manager from the people who strive to be great leaders. Leaders are about the team and not just themselves.

They [great bosses] feel supporting their employees — even if that shines a negative spotlight on themselves — is the right thing to do and is therefore unremarkable.

One of the great points, for me, that was made in this article is that great bosses do not see control as a reward. I had never thought about it from this perspective, but it is so true. People that want to become a manager because they deserve the control and are going to make things right are rarely good managers. Their motivation is in the wrong place. Being a great manager is about wanting to support your team not control them. It’s about nurturing and guiding. It’s making the time and effort to commit to individual’s development, hopefully in alignment with the company’s greater good.

To be a truly exceptional leader is to be selfless.

That’s why there are so few.

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We’ve all been there – both as the sayer and as the receiver. You are stressed out over something and someone says “Relax”. How does that make you feel? Why do we respond to that word that way?

Brian De Haaff, CEO of aha!, shared his thoughts in a very insightful posting on LinkedIn. You can read it at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/one-lie-deceptive-leaders-tell-brian-de-haaff?trk=pulse-det-nav_art

One of the points that he makes, for me, was particularly poignant; great leaders are immersed in the moment when they are most needed. It sounds simple and even trivial. But think about it for a moment. Have you ever had a manager that never seemed really connected to you? A manager that only reflected on their own image and did not hear you? How effective were they? To be a leader, during times of difficulty and stress, one has to be in the moment, experiencing what others are going through and empathizing. Only then can a leader effectively guide a person or team through the situation.

Thanks Brian for sharing!!

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The Importance of Culture

Those who know me will not be surprised when I say that culture is everything. Culture effects every aspect of our lives, both personal and business. And it crosses those boundaries.

Here is an interesting article to demonstrate:


Posted in Knowledge Management | 1 Comment

Testing for NaN

I was in the middle of building a Windows Phone 8 application when I ran into an interesting problem. My application tracks where the phone is and uses it as the center point on the map that is being displayed. I wanted the map to be adjust its heading to match the direction that the phone (user) is heading. It seemed simple enough. The Geolocator PositionChanged event passes into the handler “PositionChangedEventArgs”. The args then has a property of Position.Coordinate.Heading that is of type double?. The ? part of the type indicates that it is nullable. When it is null it comes back as NaN (not a number). No, problem (I thought). I’ll just do a check like this:

if(args.Position.Coordinate.Heading != null) …

But it always returned True. So I tried:

if(args.Position.Coordinate.Heading != Double.NaN) …

But it always returned True. Well, for reasons I won’t get into here, even if you do the following check it will always return false: Double.NaN == Double.NaN

But, I found a sneaky way (reading specifications is so helpful!) around the problem. It turns out there is a CompareTo method on the Double.NaN. If the value you are comparing is indeed a NaN, then the return value will be 0. If it returns 1 or -1, then the result is indeed a number. So, I changed my implementation to include the following:

double? tmp = args.Position.Coordinate.Heading;

            if (Double.NaN.CompareTo(tmp) != 0) …

And that seemed to do the trick. Hope this is helpful to you!

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