Leadership Series – Positive Emotions
Shari Walton, Organisational Development Consultant
Emotional intelligence is a key component of effective leadership. Being in tune with your emotions and having sound situational awareness is a powerful tool for leading yourself and teams. Understanding emotional triggers, the power of gratitude, emotional agility, and empathy, are essential ingredients to strong leadership.
Social psychologist Dr Barbara Frederiksen indicates that positive emotions lead to novel, expansive or exploratory behaviours that over time manifest to meaningful long-term social and relationship benefits. Harvard Medical school psychologist Dr Susan David offers unique expertise on cultivating more agile, healthy, resilient, and authentically happy people, families, workplaces, and communities.
To live a rich and purposeful life we need to paint with the full palette of human emotions. Having emotional agility allows us to recognise and understand what emotions we are feeling and be conscious about them rather than being driven by them. It allows you to be more intentional as a leader and to encourage individuals to recognise and feel their emotions. Engagement, creativity, and innovation will flourish under this emotionally agile leadership approach.
How can you lead with emotional agility for yourself and your team?
- Show Up
Approach your emotions or feelings with curiosity and acceptance. It may be tempting to ignore the uncomfortable ones but face them anyway. As a leader, listen to others' concerns, acknowledge the range of emotions involved and focus on positive change.
- Step Out
Enable autonomy over your actions and decisions by detaching from your emotions. See them for what they are, simply emotions, not who you are. Where possible label them as accurately as possible as this will help you to better understand their origins and what you can do about them.
- Walk Your Why
Recognise your core values and use these to drive you forward. When decision-making, ask yourself whether this decision reflects your core values and long-term goals.
- Move forward
Introduce small, purposeful adjustments to align your mindset, motivation, and habits with your core values. Make sure that these tweaks are connected to who you want to be in your life, and as a leader. These value-centred shifts will support ongoing improvements in your life.
Emotions keep us in tune with our inner and outer world and are an incredibly rich data source. As a leader, help your people to acknowledge their feelings, reassure them that all feelings are valid and encourage the ongoing processes of adopting emotional agility. For more information or support, reach out to your Relationship Manager to arrange a consult with our Organisational Development Team.
Shari Walton is an enthusiastic solution focused senior Organisation Development Consultant with extensive experience designing, developing, and implementing a broad range of Leadership Development, Talent Management, and other Learning and Organisation Development interventions that drive change and support individual, team, and business success.
Shari has over 30 years’ experience in the organisation development field across Finance, IT and Higher Education sectors. This experience is complemented with formal qualifications in Human Resources, Learning & Development, Executive Coaching, along with a Graduation Diploma in Communication Management, and a Diploma in Holistic Wellness Coaching.
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