I’m often asked to quantify the value of having high emotional intelligence. After a series of sessions with a leadership group from one of the world’s largest multi-national corporations, I followed up with a list of their key learning outcomes. I wanted to share these with all of our clients as they reflect some of the broader brush strokes of our approach.
Here are some key learning points from that particular corporate program based on my observations and the input from the team:

  1. Defining Success: It will be important to have definitions of success for the team in addition fiscal goals. I realize fiscal goals drive compensation for a lot of people, but that’s outside of everyone’s control. Remember from the Value Cards exercise that what really engages people is feeling valued and successful in their bosses eyes. Research shows this is even more important than their salary or bonuses.
  2. Letting Go of Outcome: Regardless of the goal financial or otherwise, if people get too focused on a goal they are falling short of, they start to get “tight” and they stop doing things they know they need to do. We coach executives and Olympic athletes to let go of the outcome in the moment.. This is not giving up on reaching the goal, this is about letting go “in the moment”, in order to relax and bring their best to what they are doing.
  3. Value Cards & Getting the Third Pile. I know this resonated with the group. Find ways to make sure your people know that they are valued. Some examples:
    Recognize when they’ve overcome something challenging for them

    • Ask them for advice
    • Be present in every conversation – in person, phone, e-mail, text, Skype, etc
    • Give them a project that will challenge them
    • Include them in a meeting with a senior person
    • Take interest in their career development
    • Give them the difficult feedback they need to hear in order to get better
    • Truly believe in them and their potential – and tell them
  4. Focus on the Positive. When things aren’t going well, we all fall into the trap of focusing on what isn’t working. Research is really clear that leaders who have more positive than negative interactions have much higher-performing teams. This doesn’t mean blind optimism and pretending everything is ok when it isn’t. It’s about recognizing the brutal reality of your situation, and still finding things to be positive about and believe in.

A good example is having a new President come on board – it would be easy to see all the negative possibilities; and when they are in place, to focus on decisions they make or things they say that you don’t agree with. However, if you see the positive potential outcomes they are much more likely to happen.
If you would like to know more about our corporate programs please join us for one of our upcoming public programs to see what they are all about. You’ll experience exercises and instructions that provide tools and resources that make you more effective under pressure.