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Totem Talks

69 EpisodesProduced by Totem ConsultingWebsite

The Totem Podcast hosted by Mark Smith and Helen Frewin.Offering insights into the world of psychology and business, with guest speakers and topical chat.

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Episode 69: Hybrid Working (sighs*)

September 27th, 2022


In the latest episode of Totem Talks, Mark Smith and Helen Frewin review the latest, greatest and inspirational in the Hybrid Working landscape.  And …

Episode 68: How do you Build Commercial Awareness

August 29th, 2022


We wanted to get an expert on this subject to bring a sales perspective to the conversation, so welcome Sales Leadership Guru Andy Buchanan to Totem Talks!

In this conversation, Andy and Helen discuss what it means to …

Episode 67: Developing Business Partners

July 29th, 2022


Business Partners: What makes a good HRBP, or any kind of BP? How do we develop them?

In this month's podcast Mark Smith & Helen Frewin reveal the Totem Business Partnering framework and give pointers on how this …

Episode 66: The Psychology of Great Customer Service

June 21st, 2022


A slightly different podcast than our advertised schedule called for, but the requests for this particular topic just kept rolling in - and who are …

Episode 65: Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy

May 18th, 2022


I thought you were going to just say Therapy - what's the Hypnotherapy all about?  This month we take a deep dive into the world of CBH with our …

Episode 64: Psychological Safety Part 2

April 26th, 2022


The belated follow up to Totem Talks Episode 32: Psychological Safety comes the aptly titled; Psychological Safety Part 2!

Wrestling with the …

Episode 63: Competence over Confidence

March 23rd, 2022


Hello fabulous followers!  In this month's Totem Talks we explore the very real and pervasive phenomenon of confidence - and the ability to come …

Episode 62: Assessment by Design

February 22nd, 2022


In this months Totem Talks, Mark Smith & Helen Frewin wrestle with the issue of Assessment.  And first up is a quick description of what we mean by that, as what we’re talking about here is taking a group of people …

Episode 61: Role Profiling & Analysis

January 20th, 2022


Well well!  The first Totem Talk of 2022 and crikey it's a good one - plus we have a new jingle and a new format for the new year.  All will be revealed as Mark Smith & Helen Frewin deep dive into the utterly …

Episode 60: Christmas Came Early?

November 26th, 2021


Well that's all folks!  The podcast calendar fell awkwardly this year and we had a decision to make, finish this years podcasting whilst we're on …

Episode 59: Influencing Techniques

November 12th, 2021


What do Totem & the FBI have in common?  

Not a lot actually, but we do have a huge amount of respect for their Behavioral Change Stairway Model - which was developed by the FBI’s hostage negotiation unit.  

It's a …

Episode 58: Perfectionism isn't Perfect

October 29th, 2021


Perfectionism is one of those interesting character traits that many aspire too, but it can often lead to drastically negative behaviour.   Research now shows us that perfectionism is an acquired trait, we’re certainly …

Episode 57: Authentic Leadership

October 15th, 2021


As globalisation has taken a hold of business, it’s become increasingly important for leaders to understand their role and capabilities within this …

Episode 56: Acceptance Commitment Therapy

October 1st, 2021


In this Episode, Mark Smith & Helen Frewin dive into the (relative) deep end of psychology in the work place - and specifically Acceptance and …

Episode 55: Better than Confidence

September 17th, 2021


It's official, Helen's book has arrived!  Well, sort of...  

There is a draft version in circulation, being read and edited this summer ready for …

Episode 54: Rating Scales

September 3rd, 2021


In business we crave the ability to quantify everything, from our sales targets to the number of toner cartridges we use.  Why shouldn’t our people …

Episode 53: How to be a great Consultant

August 20th, 2021


The third and final installment in our summer series on running your own business.  In this episode, Mark Smith & Helen Frewin explain how you can differentiate yourself from the competition.

And it's quite simple …

Episode 52: Getting Clients

August 6th, 2021


Part 2 of our summer series on running a business!  This week we cover the number one asked questions when it comes to setting up a consultancy - how …

Episode 51: Starting your own business

July 23rd, 2021


Have you been thinking about quitting your job?  Maybe you'd like to venture out on your own?  But  how on earth do you actually start your own business?  How do you get clients?  How do you do a good job?  

In this …

Episode 50: An interview with Dr Penny Pullan

July 9th, 2021


A special treat this week listeners!  Helen Frewin has the opportunity to speak to Dr Penny Pullan about the in's and out's of Hybrid working, how to …

Episode 49: Flexible Thinking & Hybrid Working

June 25th, 2021


Many companies are beginning to wrestle with the "new normal" world of work.  Will you be expected to go into the office every day? How will you make …

Episode 48: The Trusted Advisor

June 11th, 2021


In this weeks podcast, Mark Smith & Helen Frewin discuss the Trusted Advisor model - the common sense approach to building strong relationships as advisors - but also the The Challenger research from CEB and how …

Episode 47: Writing a Book pt.2

May 28th, 2021


In this week's episode of Totem Talks, Helen Frewin and Mark Smith catch up on her book writing progress.  In a fascinating twist, another book has appeared on the horizon!

We share the ins and outs of how this new book …

Episode 46: Coaching for Managers

May 14th, 2021


If you’re a people manager or supervisor, how could asking a few open questions help you better manage your team? 

Whereas our previous podcasts on …

Episode 45: Hybrid Workplace Management

April 30th, 2021


In this week's podcast Mark Smith & Helen Frewin have a proper good natter about the impact of Hybrid Workplace Management.    

Exploring what our clients are up to, how we're supporting them and some of the early …

Episode 44: Brain Fog in the Workplace

April 16th, 2021


What an earth is Brain Fog?

Do you find yourself wandering into rooms and completely forgetting why you're there?  Or struggling to focus for anything longer than 20 minutes?  Or that your thinking is sluggish and …

Episode 43: Grace Marshall Interview

April 1st, 2021


It’s here! 

Author, speaker, Productivity Ninja and all-round fabulous human being… Grace Marshall’s new book “Struggle: The surprising truth, beauty …

Episode 42: We're One Year Old!

March 19th, 2021


Come and celebrate with the Totem team as we mark our one year podcast anniversary.  

This podcast is arguably focussed towards the budding entrepreneur or small business owner, it's been a crazy 12 months - so we look …

Episode 41: Telephone Interviewing

March 5th, 2021


Cast your mind back to the distant past.  

A distant time when we'd actually make phone calls to speak to one another, and fret over our remaining minutes or put the phone down before the 60 minute mark...  Remarkably, …

Episode 40: Psychometrics

February 21st, 2021


Over the years we’ve acquired quite a bit of expertise working with psychometrics.  We’ve found it was in our clients interest – and therefore in …

Episode 39: Inclusive Leadership

February 5th, 2021


This week is Race Equality Week and Mark Smith & Helen Frewin discuss how our work at Totem is evolving to support Diversity, Equity & …

Episode 38: 3 Conversations with Tara Humphrey

January 22nd, 2021


In the latest instalment of Helen Frewin’s 3 Conversations interviews , we’re joined by the fabulous Tara Humphrey - founder of THC Primary Care and …

Episode 37: Goal Setting

January 8th, 2021


We're back!  The Totem team are back in podcast mode and what could be more clichéd than starting the New Year with a podcast on goal setting?

In …

Episode 36: The Last Totem Talk?

December 4th, 2020


No not really!  That's just a bit of playful clickbait to celebrate the last Totem Talks podcast of 2020 - a remarkable year by any definition!

In …

Episode 35: Values based Business

November 27th, 2020


The words mission, vision, and values hold very different meanings to different people.   What do they mean for you?

In this podcast Mark Smith & …

Episode 34: 3 Conversations with Osaro Ewansiha

November 20th, 2020


In the latest Totem Talks we focus again on 3 conversations, as Helen Frewin is progressing with the writing of her book.

This week Helen Frewin interviews Osaro Ewansiha – and prepare yourself for a breath of fresh …

Episode 33: 3 Conversations with Charlotte Speak

November 13th, 2020


In the latest Totem Talks we focus again on 3 conversations, as Helen Frewin is progressing with the writing of her book.

This week Helen Frewin interviews the amazing Charlotte Speak, Director of Power of the Parent. …

Episode 32: Psychological Safety

November 6th, 2020


Perhaps not quite what you think, but Psychological Safety is a term almost exclusively used in a workplace setting.  

A term that came to prominence …

Episode 31: Good Discrimination?

October 30th, 2020


With Black Lives Matter and a greater awareness than ever before about unfair discrimination, have we forgotten that some discrimination is good? How do we stay focused on discriminating against job criteria when we’re …

Episode 30: Wellbeing

October 23rd, 2020


In this weeks podcast Helen Frewin & Mark Smith discuss the idea of Wellbeing.  An often used, but poorly defined word that can cover everything from our mental to physical health.

We share our personal experiences …

Episode 29: Vulnerability

October 16th, 2020


It strikes us that the traditional view that managers must have all the right answers and never be seen as weak, is more damaging now than ever before.

We want an engaged team of talented people to lead us forward to …

Episode 28: Coaching for All

October 9th, 2020


We have been delighted this year to have received more requests for coaching than ever before.  We’re delighted because we love doing it.  

It’s one thing working with 12 people on a workshop, but the difference we can …

Episode 27: Coaching

October 2nd, 2020


Feeling stuck?  Maybe you know where you want to get to, but you’re going around in circles.  Or maybe you haven’t worked out yet what direction you want to take.

1:1 coaching gives you the thinking space and time to …

Episode 26: Work Life Harmony

September 25th, 2020


“How do I achieve a better work-life balance?”

People ask us this all the time, and we feel like it’s the wrong question.  Because balance seems elusive and something we will never achieve. 

It’s always a weighing-up …

Episode 25: Self Care September

September 18th, 2020


This week we're celebrating the work of Action for Happiness, and focusing on their Self-Care September.  Inspired by a previous podcast (Episode 22) Mark Smith and Helen Frewin discuss the idea of self care, and that …

Episode 24: Don't Game the Recruitment System

September 11th, 2020


Maybe the way we’ve been brought up to think about job seeking isn’t so helpful...  Mark Smith & Helen Frewin take a turn for the unexpected in …

Episode 23: Recruitment for Recruiters

September 4th, 2020


Where to start when recruiting?  Whilst we don’t want to teach you how to suck eggs – whatever that means, we do often get asked what simple steps can be taken to make a more robust hiring decision. So here they are.

Episode 22: 3 Conversations with Andrea Newton

August 28th, 2020


In the latest Totem Talks we focus again on the 3 conversations that have influenced a persons life.  This week Helen Frewin interviews the fabulous …

Episode 21: How's it Going?

August 21st, 2020


In this week's episode, Mark Smith and Helen Frewin take time to pause and reflect on the last few months.  Covid 19 has forced an entire society to "Pivot" it's work, it's expectations and challenged us all to really …

Episode 20: Building Confidence

August 14th, 2020


Is confidence something you can build?  Are some people just naturally more confident than others?

Yes of course, some people have more confidence than others, but you can also learn to build your confidence.  In fact, …

Episode 19: Networking Online

August 7th, 2020


Maybe networking has never been your thing. Maybe you were working on it pre-lockdown. But how can you do it now?

Whether you’re working from home, or facing a hybrid of moving between the office and your sofa, how can …

Episode 18: Becoming an Entrepreneur?

July 31st, 2020


If you're thinking about becoming your own boss, we may have some advice for you!  The word entrepreneur is certainly the flavour of the moment, it’s …

Episode 17: Emotional Intelligence

July 24th, 2020


Success requires more than traditional skills & intelligence (IQ).  This is true of leaders, managers and every member of the workforce.  Each person needs to deal with the emotions related to their work, both their …

Episode 16: 3 conversations with Ali Carruthers

July 17th, 2020


In the latest Totem Talks, Helen Frewin interviews the fabulous Ali Carruthers - Director of People Development & Change at Purple Pebble People. …

Episode 15: Defining Talent Management

July 10th, 2020


Ever since the McKinsey paper The War for Talent was published in 1997, organisations have struggled with the idea of finding and keeping hold of …

Episode 14: 3 Conversations with Lorna McCallum

July 3rd, 2020


The second instalment of Helen Frewin’s 3 Conversations interviews, as part of her book-writing journey, we’re joined by Lorna McCallum. No surprise, …

Episode 13: Unconscious Bias

June 26th, 2020


What exactly is unconscious bias?  Put simply, it’s the decisions that we make every day - on an unconscious basis - in relation to other people.


Based on our gender, ethnicity, genetics, upbringing, education and so …

Episode 12: 3 Conversations with Mark Smith

June 19th, 2020


“I told my wife I was thinking of having an affair.”

In the first of Helen Frewin’s 3 Conversations interviews as part of her book-writing journey, …

Episode 11: How to Delegate

June 12th, 2020


How do you Delegate?


Poor delegation will cause you frustration, demotivates and confuses the other people, and even fails to achieve the task or purpose itself. On the other hand, good delegation not only gets …

Episode 10: Developing Gravitas

June 5th, 2020


What is Gravitas? And how on earth do we develop it?


In the latest episode of Totem Talks, Mark Smith & Helen Frewin discuss several key components to Gravitas, or that notion of your own ‘gravity’ or authority – …

Episode 9: Transactional Analysis

May 29th, 2020


Transactional Analysis is one of the cornerstones of modern psychology. It was developed by Eric Berne, and describes the infamous ‘parent adult …

Episode 8: Toxic Masculinity

May 22nd, 2020


It’s Mental Health Awareness Week and the theme for this year is kindness. Mark Smith shares his personal mental health challenges and Helen Frewin …

Episode 7: Writing a Book

May 15th, 2020


Helen is writing a book!  

In this latest podcast Mark Smith and Helen Frewin discuss her tentative and surprisingly emotional first steps in writing a book.  What's the book about?  Who is she writing it for?  Secrets …

Episode 6: Difficult Conversations

May 7th, 2020


Why do we not like giving feedback?  Why do we not face up to those honest, tough or difficult conversations?  Whatever we call them, and many …

Episode 5: Online Learning

April 27th, 2020


What are other people doing with virtual learning?  

This is a question we are getting asked a lot right now, so we thought we’d share a few experiences and tips that have come up across our clients.  Mark Smith & …

Episode 4: Coping with Anxiety

April 20th, 2020


Business Psychologist Helen Frewin and her trusty sidekick Mark Smith give us an overview of what causes anxiety and tips to manage it. 

In this …

Episode 3: Silo Working

April 14th, 2020


Silos in the workplace cause nothing but frustration for customers, clients and employee's alike, so why do we often find ourselves operating in this way?

Mark Smith & Helen Frewin have a natter about their …

Episode 2: Working from Home

April 10th, 2020


Make the most of Working from Home.  Helen Frewin & Mark Smith explore some of the nuances of working from home, offering tips for productivity …

Episode 1: The First One

April 6th, 2020


Totem dips its toes into the murky world of Podcasting.  Who are we?  Why are we here?

Secrets will be revealed!

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