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EQ-i 2.0 Leadership Development Leadership Skills Training

How Do We Build Trust in a Team?

“Learning to trust is one of life’s most difficult tasks.” – Isaac Watts

One of the key components of effective team building is developing trust amongst the group members. An absence of trust in the workplace can make productivity an uphill slog and hamper progress on projects and performance.

Trust means that you rely on someone else to do the right thing and you are willing to put yourself on the line in the belief of someone else. Without this sort of dependence within a team or organization, members can find themselves working at cross-purposes with each other.

As a manager, how can you build trust amongst your team and foster a strong bond that will enable productivity and cohesion?

The first step the leadership of an organization can take is to develop Emotional Intelligence. Taking the time to bring in a knowledgeable consultant such as Wise Ways Consulting, trained to administer EI testing such as the EQ-I 2.0 and EQ360 can help accelerate trust-building in the workplace.

Through self-awareness, empathy, motivation, self-regulation, and building social skills – the five categories of Emotional Intelligence – team leaders can properly develop and motivate their teams.

Once leaders know themselves, it is easier to find the strengths and areas for growth in others and work to develop those. The simple act of getting out from behind one’s desk, greeting people, and talking to team members while showing genuine interest in learning who each person is, will go a long way toward building trust.

When team leaders take steps to recognize successes, share failures, applaud people’s positive behaviors and individual growth, and respectfully address negative behaviors with constructive ways to improve, they set their team up for success by demonstrating the simple act of trust.

Can vulnerability build trust?

Absolutely! We have already discussed the intertwined nature of trust and vulnerability. The simple act of trusting that someone will deliver what is expected without micromanaging the process is an act of trust and vulnerability. Learn to sit with discomfort and allow team members to take the reins and prove they are worthy of that trust. Remember that they were hired because they are good at their jobs – allow them the autonomy to show you!

Being vulnerable is synonymous with learning to “sit in the discomfort.” This may simply be the discomfort of letting go, stopping controlling all aspects of the team’s mission, and giving ownership to the team in order to empower them in their roles within the organization. As control is released, teams become stronger as a whole and leadership are able to remove focus from day-to-day activities instead working toward shaping the organization’s long-term vision and strategic plans.

By employing techniques learned through completing the EI assessment, learning the concepts, and training the organization can work toward building trust and empowering a team.

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EQ-i 2.0 Personal Development Professional Development

What’s Getting in the Way of Growth? Is it You?

As we set our goals and identify areas of opportunity, and potential growth it is important to look at how we prevent ourselves from achieving those goals. It’s critical that we examine this so that we sidestep the same pitfalls we sometimes find ourselves in as we ease into the coming year.

It has been said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. An important goal should be to break the cycle and figure out what is preventing you from making the changes you’ve identified during goal-setting exercises in order to be successful.

When we put together leadership coaching programs we help individuals and teams identify obstacles that prevent change. The first step is looking into whether or not obstacles are within the individual or part of the environment. Sometimes an obstacle may seem like it is environmental when in reality it is created by the mental attitude in which you dwell in your own circumstances. Will changing your attitude and your mindset change the way you are perceived or the way you see others?

It can take a lot of courage to admit that your own decisions and behaviors are what create a certain working environment. Regardless of the position you hold in an organization, you have the ability to affect change just simply by deciding what attitude you will bring to your daily interactions.

With regard to goal setting, ask yourself “What do I have to do on my end to make these changes in the workplace? What result would my transformation have on my immediate team, leader, or subordinates?” When you start thinking about the organization as an organism that operates with the emotions, strengths, and weaknesses of the entire team, you start to realize that you can be the brain, the heart, the lungs, or the moral compass of the whole simply by the role you choose to play within the workplace.

Once you begin to identify whether or not you are getting in the way of your personal and professional growth and success, you will begin to realize how much power you have to make changes. You truly are in charge of your own growth!

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EQ-i 2.0 Leadership Development Leadership Skills Leadership Training

Six Emotional Leadership Styles

Our emotional intelligence determines our potential for learning practical skills that are based on its five elements: self-awareness, motivation, self-regulation, empathy, and adeptness in relationships. Dan Goleman

Change is not easy and often can be uncomfortable, yet change is an essential ingredient to an organization meeting its mission. Strong leaders motivate their team members by understanding the importance of emotional intelligence.

Often considered the Father of Emotional Intelligence, Dan Goleman is the author of Emotional Intelligence, named one of the 25 Most Influential Business Management Books, by TIME Magazine. His works have gone on to help define strong leadership skills and styles. His book Primal Leadership: Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence written in collaboration with Richard Boyatzis and Annie McKee, defined six Emotional Leadership Styles.

In order to implement change, it is important to understand the six leadership styles and the degree of impact they can have on an organization.

The Visionary Leader  This leader moves people forward with a new direction toward a shared goal. By sharing knowledge about the destination but not micromanaging the process to get there, the visionary leader empowers others to utilize individual innovation, experimentation, and grants permission to take calculated risks.

The Coaching Leader  This leader encourages individuals to identify strengths and weaknesses and connects those traits and aspirations with the goals of the organization. The coaching leader positively impacts the climate and helps individuals build skill sets through one-on-one attention.

The Affiliative Leader
  This leader takes a collaborative approach toward connecting people and engaging their emotional needs in a team setting. The affiliative leader creates a positive climate by alleviating stressful situations and healing differences between colleagues. In this scenario, poor performance by an individual can be masked by group effort.

The Democratic Leader
  This leader takes a consensus-building approach valuing participation, commitment, and input from all members of the team. This style relies on the group’s commitment to the goals and input on various facets of the business. While this approach draws on a variety of skill sets, it can create a crisis when urgent business demands a quick decisive response.

The Pacesetting Leader  This leader is most effective with a motivated competent team but it should be used sparingly and in combination with other styles. The pacesetter builds challenges and goals and sets high standards with very little input and guidance. The objective is to be better, faster, and more efficient. When overused or used poorly, this leadership style can create a poisonous environment that can undercut morale and set individuals up for failure.

The Commanding Leader
  This leader thrives in crisis as power and dominance are demonstrated and full compliance is expected. It creates a very rigid hierarchy much like that of a military commander issuing orders. The commanding leader maintains a singular vision and path to success and has no qualms about requiring all to conform to one unified ideal. This style is most often used, yet carries the least effect. Goleman argues it is only effective in a crisis when urgent change is needed.

Many of these leadership styles are most successful when utilized in tandem with one another. The most effective leaders pull from this selection of styles to fit the moment versus trying to fit each moment into a single style. Through proper utilization of each of these styles, a leader can move their team effectively through change.

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Corporate Teams Effective Communication EQ-i 2.0 Leadership Development Leadership Skills Personal Development Professional Development

Communicating from Our Corners

Election month, November is finally here. The political vitriol and hate speech will stop (hopefully). With internet jokes, pundit reports, and social media shouting at us in a never-ending cycle, it’s difficult to tune it out. I’m your neighbor from up north, and I think a lot of it is a communication issue. The United States has genuinely stopped listening and talking as a country.

Let’s examine the previous several months and how we got here.

Republicans came first, but only because of the order of their convention.

Ted Cruz declined to support Trump. For the purposes of this conversation, it doesn’t matter if you loved or supported him. What counts is that a group of people booed him, engaging in improper behavior of their own. This shows how strongly they felt about his message. Delegates then began to abuse him on the convention floor, calling him a traitor and other derogatory terms.

The Bernie or Bust Democrats followed suit a week later. Even after their candidate endorsed the opposing candidate, they refused to accept it and continued to spew hate speech.

then the debates would follow. I listened to a stammering Donald Trump ramble about, I don’t know, anything. I could share some advice with him about how to interact with a crowd as a leadership development expert. Hillary made a sincere effort to connect with the audience despite her worries about her ability to do so. She has been portrayed in the past three weeks’ worth of Saturday Night Live sketches.

Then came a series of one-liners from both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, including references to “Nasty Woman” and “Basket of Deplorables.”

Including the allegations of sexual misconduct, Wikileaks, remarks concerning the involvement of other countries, and so forth. We are impatiently waiting to exit the crazy Ferris wheel that is spinning nonstop.

One of the things that make the United States a nation full of ideas and opportunities is the freedom to protest and inquire. But somewhere along the line, people lost the ability to sympathize, compromise, listen, and act rationally rather than emotionally. They have retreated even further into their corners.

Do you stand in a corner and stare out? Have any of the following crossed your mind or lips?
– Because I despise candidate B, I’m going to vote for candidate A. I won’t be casting a vote at all. I wholeheartedly agree with what my candidate says. Everything the other candidate says is unquestionably false. Never support Trump! Never Hillary, I say!

If you answered yes to any of them, you’re probably in a tight spot politically.

What would happen if you declared that you would never collaborate with a person in your office or on your team? What would happen if you were asked to present evidence and information regarding a project to aid in solving a dispute but you objected, claiming the opposing side was incorrect? What would you say if a worker approached you and said, “Never”? There is a good chance that HR would receive a call.

This lack of leadership results from no one paying attention, making concessions, or showing empathy. Booing someone is simple. Finding a solution to a problem and shaking hands is more difficult.

We all have our own niches, but it’s important to identify when we start to attract less attention since all we do is boo. This is when we become the “Never.” And when we turn into the “Never,” we must understand the effect that has on other people.

What do you perceive from your position as a leader? Do you simply perceive things from your own point of view? Or can you move around the room and experience it from someone else’s perspective? Do you anticipate that everyone on your team and throughout the company will adopt your point of view? Or can you see that sometimes being a part of something bigger than yourself requires sacrificing your personal needs and ambitions in order to realize the wider picture? In my book, How Not to Act Like a BLEEP at Work, I discuss how empathy and perspective-taking are crucial for fostering teamwork. Although it’s not always simple, achieving an organization’s objective and the bottom line is essential to its success.

As an individual leader and a part of your professional and personal communities, I encourage you to turn around and look at things from a different angle. You are not required to alter your opinions. But maybe, just maybe, you can work out a compromise. Your efforts to try and meet individuals where they are will be noticed by your team, and your business will benefit as a result.

Also, don’t forget to use your voting rights!

Read the remainder of the November newsletter at Wise Words here!

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