One of my executive coaching clients confided in me this week that he was struggling to convince several of their senior executives on changing their company culture. The data from a recent company engagement survey indicated that far too many employees were not engaged wit the mission and vision of the company. It was as if the big egos in the room were locked in a battle of who was right and blaming the others for perceived failures.
I asked him “What happens or behaviors do you observe now and what would you like to see in the future?” He responded, “I tolerate behaviors that don’t contribute to growth”. I suggested that he first work on becoming aware of his own habits and patterns of behavior. He then would model the new desired behavior.
At our next meeting, he reported that it interrupted the pattern of a battle of egos and got everyone’s focused attention. The members of the executive team thought that if he was so passionate about his belief in creating a new culture that they began to pay attention to their own habits and patterns of behavior that were counterproductive to creating a high performance culture.
Emotionally intelligent leaders know that creating a positive workplace culture and climate where emotions are appropriately expressed increases engagement and moves things forward. In order for people to be fully engaged, they need to feel they are following leaders who inspire them emotionally.
The Business Case for Positivity
As scientists study the brain and learn more about how we achieve optimal functioning, the term positivity has finally captured business leaders’ interests. What researchers are discovering about positive emotions at work is essential knowledge for anyone who wants to lead individuals and organizations to high performance.
One study of CEOs showed that positivity training could boost their productivity by 15 percent, and managers improved customer satisfaction by 42 percent. Positivity training programs have demonstrated excellent results with tax auditors, investment bankers and lawyers.
Briefly, here’s what these groups are taught to reduce stress and raise their levels of happiness and success:
- How to develop a positive mindset
- How to build their social support networks
- How to buffer themselves against negativity
Being positive isn’t simply about being nice and giving in, nor does it mean suppressing negative information and emotions. Both are critical for optimal performance. Apparently, however, a 3:1 positivity-to-negativity ratio is the tipping point for individuals and business teams to go from average to flourishing.
When you experience and express three times as much positive as negative emotion, you pave the way for excellence and high performance. Most of us (80 percent) experience a ratio of 2:1.
In business, positive emotions yield:
- Better decisions.
- Increased creativity
- More curiosity and interest in the world
- Better health
- Better social relationships
- Optimism and perseverance
- Lower turnover
- Improved customer service
- Better supervisor evaluations
- Lower emotional fatigue
- Higher job satisfaction
- Better organizational citizenship (ethics)
- Fewer work absences
- Improved innovation
- Better safety records
Are you working in a company where executive coaches provide leadership development to help leaders put positive leadership into action? Does your organization provide executive coaching for leaders who need to be more positive? Positive leaders tap into their emotional intelligence and social intelligence skills to create a more fulfilling future.
One of the most powerful questions you can ask yourself is “Am I a positive leader who helps individuals and organizations achieve their highest potential, flourish at work, experience elevating energy and achieve levels of effectiveness difficult to attain otherwise?” Emotionally intelligent and socially intelligent organizations provide executive coaching to help leaders develop more positive teams.
Working with a seasoned executive coach and leadership consultant trained in emotional intelligence and incorporating assessments such as the Bar-On EQ-I, CPI 260 and Denison Culture Survey can help leaders nurture positivity in the workplace. You can become a more positive leader who models emotional intelligence and social intelligence, and who inspires people to become fully engaged with the vision, mission and strategy of your company or law firm.