Professional development, training and emotional intelligence can sometimes appear to be a bit fluffy. Especially when demands are high, performance targets need to be met and you just don’t have the time to be ‘having nice conversations’. Ultimately you need things to be done quickly and well. Why can’t people just do what you ask of them?!
If only it were that simple! As one of my mentors once said – ‘people are walking skin bags, full of emotion’. How do you deal with this in the workplace!?
With the onset of new technology our ‘humanness’ will be one of the few things that we have left. Our ability to consultant, collaborate and have empathy will become a competitive advantage.
But even before this it makes financial sense to invest in your own, and your team’s emotional intelligence. Why? Because people buy people. People are inspired and motivated by people and because performance is determined by mindset. You can have the best tools in the world but if you don’t have people that share your values and beliefs they won’t do what you ask of them. They need to trust you to follow you.
In 2002, the Deming Centre for Quality & Management estimated that 50% of time wasted in business was due to lack of trust. In his book, The Speed of Trust, Steven M.R Covey also gave several examples of when trust goes up, speed goes up and when trust goes down speed goes down. A low trust environment leads to slow, sluggish decision making, and performance. How much faster would it be for you to buy or sell a house if you knew you could trust all parties involved?
If you’re wondering whether it’s possible to create a more trusting environment, without changing your existing team, the answer is yes.
People will do more, go above and beyond more and generate more income when they can trust their leaders and when they feel their leaders trust them. I’ve seen this first hand. A team go from average to high performance in 4 weeks through our coaching. They wanted to do more but before coaching they weren’t clear on what was expected of them, what they were ‘allowed’ to do or whether they could trust their leader.
Trust isn’t easy to define. It’s one of those things that you can sense but not always put your finger on. There are two types of trust; the trust you have that someone will do their job well and the trust that you have for a person’s character. Ideally you will have both.
Jade Varley is a Leadership Coach and has been running her business for the last 7 and half years. She coaches leaders to bring out their best so that they can grow their businesses and themselves.