What a roller coaster the past couple of years have been.
It seemed we’d turned a corner with the Government lifting restrictions, more and more people leaving their hybrid workplace and returning to their offices – even booking holidays, events and Christmas family gatherings! Life getting ‘back to normal’?
Then, earlier this week came the news of yet another variant. Omnicron had arrived! A vortex of fear, dread, overthinking fell on some intensified by the re-introduction of some restrictions by the UK Government.
Scientists in South Africa alerted the world to this new variant. We know by the time a new variant has been announced, it’s already out there in the world’s population. They couldn’t control the reaction of countries closing their borders. Had they known, would they have shared their discovery?
Borders are starting to close. Restrictions are being re-introduced. It can feel like news channels are on repeat cycles of doom without any context or balance. There is no evidence of which way this new variant will go. The UK Government’s consistent guidance of ‘we have to live with this’, seems to have now been reversed.
It’s no wonder anxiety, fear and overthinking is rising in many of us. So, what can we do?
Control what we can – ignore what we can’t.
Accept some things we cannot control. Governments and scientists will make their decisions. But, here’s the thing. When we accept these things are out of our control, we can stop focussing on them and look at what we can control. The fear, anxiety and negative thinking starts to dissipate. We start to grow stronger and move forward.
Change your thoughts – start by questioning them. What evidence do you have to think that way? Often, we think negatively because our minds are designed to keep us safe and so they over amplify negative thoughts. Merely by questioning our negative thoughts, their power starts to dwindle.
Control – what areas of your life can you focus on, control and inject positivity into? Building in some self-care windows to everyday routines, learning new skills these are some of the building blocks to growing self-esteem, empowerment and resilience. Doing something for somewhere else makes us feel better and them. Start with a simple smile. Watch – it’s infectious!
For employers, what additional things can be considered?
Emotional Intelligence behavioural assessments – our emotions impact our thoughts. Our thoughts impact our behaviours. Our behaviours impact our actions which impact everything and everyone around us. Thing is how we see our behaviours can be very different to how those around us experience them.
i-act’s Managing and Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing delivers all the tools to proactively build a resilient workplace. The 50+ tools taught in i-act are life-long skills that enable us to deal with all life events. Accredited by the Royal College of Psychiatrists, designed specifically for the workplace and global.
Therefore, I’m going to control what I can and ignore what I can’t – how about you?
What a full on, interactive, knowledge sharing week it’s been so far and we’re only at Wednesday!
An unexpected, last minute re-schedule request saw two I-act Managing & Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing delivered on Monday with a little over one hour gap – exhilarating!
The first with a utilities organisation who have already delivered this course to many of their managers and seen the benefits of doing so….
In between these, work on a potential new advertising campaign for Growing Talent in the New Year, ongoing processing for 25 Genos EI Assessments for a global facilities services company – progressing nicely then yesterday I delivered I-act Managing and Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing to a mixed cohort including managers from diverse industries wanting to upskill their knowledge and some trainee instructors doing this as part of their accredited instructor journey….
What an honour it’s been to work virtually with so many people in such a short time!
“The course was very interesting and so close to my heart”
“You made us all feel included and comfortable – I learned so many new tools”
“I’m going straight back to work to talk to my managers – we need to do more of this!”
And what happened when I mentioned nose hair? Well, that’s a whole other post.
Some weeks are full to the brim with activity, new learning and wonderment. If we just open ourselves up to every opportunity – who knows where it will lead or the new connections we’ll secure!
Yesterday I had the honour of playing a small part in new trainee instructors for @i-acttraining on their journey to become accredited.
Delivering the Managing and Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing course to them and some insightful managers joining to upskill themselves in this critical area is always insightful. This session more so than others.
Learning how different workplaces still have a deficit in understanding, analysing and recognising the emotional culture of their environment, the emotional intelligence of their teams – tops to bottom – and the wellbeing of all staff has been an eye opener over the many years I’ve worked in the strategic area of personal growth.
We all recognise Covid has added additional pressures. These pressures are more amplified and dangerous where there has been no examination of emotional intelligence and workplace culture nor effective well-being tools taught.
Over recent months I’ve heard heartfelt concerns about the toxic workplace cultures, lack of empathy and focus on staff’s wellbeing some delegates have expressed.
These concerns are even more stark when the delegates are from charities, often working through their lunch, exhausted and running on empty to satisfy their leaders working well away from the ‘front-line’. Wait for it, many are volunteers – not paid but exhausting themselves because they care so much about the end user.
What jolted me yesterday was a delegate from a regional control centre for the ambulance service sharing the results of a survey carried out in their area. 77% of respondents from the service said they were experiencing mental ill health issues, feeling demotivated and running on empty. What’s more telling is a further 10% refused to answer those particular questions around their health. So it’s reasonable to believe 87% of the ambulance crews in this region feel like this. Just reflect on that for a moment.
We are told often the NHS is facing it’s biggest pressure ever due to Covid, winter etc. We can talk about mis-management, underfunding and so on – issues that have likely been present for decades. We hear so much about this that we become numb to it ‘the NHS has been like that for years’. That may be true – but reflect on those frontline staff we all depend on in our own emergency situations experiencing similar to what the delegate shared below.
But here’s the thing, this delegate shared that none of their colleagues have time to practice their own self-care. They eat fast food continuously because it’s a case of what can they grab quickly in the few minutes they might be able to snatch in between ‘shouts’. There is no time for ‘fun’ in the workplace. Every work place should have fun in it. @i-acttraining is great at teaching well-being windows we can all do that nurture our wellbeing and build our resilience levels, clear our minds to enable rational thought and deliver the energy needed to get through the shifts. These can be done alone or as part of a team and cost NO MONEY but deliver so many benefits.
The delegate was fired-up at the end of the session to take back the critical learning to their managers.
All workplace cultures have to change. Energy and investment should be aimed at staff – they are the ones looking after your end clients. If they are feeling exhausted, demotivated and devalued – newsflash – you clients will feel it and go elsewhere. Your business and profits will suffer.
I personally don’t want an ambulance crew turning up when I’m in the most awful situation of my life knowing they are running on empty and suffering themselves. Do you?
Nor do I want to interact with anyone I am buying products or services from who are also exhausted. Do you?
Richard Branson on being interviewed many years ago on how he made Virgin such a success said something like “I don’t focus on my clients. I focus on my staff. If they are in a great place, they will deliver a great service to my clients” Fabulous insight.
Focussing on budgets, deadlines is what the NHS, and may businesses have done for years.
Where would they be now if they had focussed on the emotional culture of their workplace, the behavioural impact of their management on teams, the wellbeing and self-care of all their staff?
Keep doing the same thing will only deliver the same results.
Is now the time for workplaces – ALL workplaces – to do better and differently?
So where to start?
You can’t change what you can’t see. So stop ignoring, take the blinkers off and investigate, assess and deliver. It’s the only way to be sure your business and teams are thriving, not just surviving.
Investigate – carry out an Emotional Culture Index of your workplace. It’s quick, easy and gives an overview of exactly how your staff feel, compared to how they expected to feel in their role and their ideal level.
Assess – carryout Genos Emotional Intelligence Assessments – the only tool that focuses on development through coaching sessions to achieve closure of gaps revealed in behaviours,
Deliver – Rollout the @i-iacttraining Managing and Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing training to all staff managing people. There is an equivalent role for non-managers Understanding and Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing. Both courses deliver over 50 self-care tools which can also be used in supporting others, as well as training in how to implement self-care windows through each day. Accredited by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and delivers CPD points. This is a global product which can be run anytime, anywhere by the same instructor giving uniform delivery of this bespoke, proactive product.
The Ambulance Service is not the only workplace experiencing issues of mental ill health, exhaustion and demotivation. How long before those issues bubbling away under the surface, being ignored erupt?
Here’s a thought to finish with – what will happen to your business if you put your people first instead of deadlines and profits?
Multiple research reports by academics and business bodies as well as World Economic Forum have all researched and published data about the importance of EI – especially in the workplace – consistently over the last decade+.
EI is the key differentiator humans have over Artificial Intelligence (AI) – no machine can persuade, influence nor empathise with humans as well as we can. There will always be a need for high EI talent in all businesses.
Yet many businesses are unaware of the critical importance of this. Many don’t measure it nor access, gap analyse nor develop it. The Great Resignation published in October 2021 spoke of 41% of the global workforce considered moving jobs. But many business leaders are unaware of this nor the simple steps to rectify any hidden issues.
Studies have shown that high levels of emotional intelligence boost career success, mental health, relationships, humour, and happiness.
Many employers invest heavily in a diverse range of training for their teams without assessing their emotional intelligence nor the emotional culture of the environment they work in. This is like building a house on unstable foundations. Why would you waste money, time and effort like that?
So, what can employers do?
Emotional Culture Index
A digital online survey that takes less than five minutes to complete. Measures ten emotions in the workplace on three levels – current feeling, expected feeling and ideal feeling. This can be run across departments to see the general gaps in the culture of the business. This would be a good first step.
A more robust process reveals what’s really going on with your talent giving you time to develop and close any gaps before the risk of them leaving the business.
Workplace Emotional Intelligence Assessments from Genos International focus on the competencies shown in the model below with the respective unproductive and productive state outcomes for each – where do you want your teams sitting?
For instance, the skill of Positive Influence helps people create a productive environment for others. Positive Influence equips you with the capacity to encourage colleagues to cooperate and work effectively together.
People who can positively influence others’ moods, feelings and emotions are empowering to work with and easily motivate those around them.
However, take a moment to consider the unproductive opposite to this – ‘indifferent’ How would you feel working with someone in this category? Just how toxic would that be over time?
Remember, negativity spreads as fast as positivity.
The Genos Emotionally Intelligent Workplace Behaviour survey measures how well you demonstrate emotionally intelligent workplace behaviours in comparison to others. It also reveals your raters’ experience of how well you demonstrate the same behaviours. The better you demonstrate the behaviours measured, the more effective your relationships and work will be. It’s not a test but a key development tool.
Workplace EI Assessments are available in three classifications:
Self How well an individual believes they demonstrate these competencies in the workplace and how important they believe they are.
180 In addition to Self above, the 180 includes comments and ratings from colleagues along with their qualitative text.
360 In addition to the 180, line additional raters from management, clients, suppliers are included in the ratings and comments section
Key Features of the Assessment
Interpretation of results is engaging and readily accessible with easy to navigate reports.
Benchmarked results provide a comparison with others’ self-assessed results and the report outlines the type of behaviours associated with being emotionally intelligent in the workplace.
Raters provide free text responses for each competency assessed. These are captured in the Feedback Report and help understand the context behind rater responses to assessment questions.
A traffic light methodology highlights areas of potential strength and development.
Housed in a modern, responsive, online survey system. Raters can complete on their phone, tablet, PC or Mac, anywhere, at any time.
The coaching process ensures the results are understood, insights are revealed, actions are identified and gaps closed leading to overall development and growth as well as stronger collaboration relationships with raters.
Quick and easy to complete in less than 20 minutes – a total of 42 questions.
Genos International has over 7,500 certified partners – of which I am one! It is a leader in the field of EI, has a global presence, 20 year trackable history, and won multiple industry awards year on year.
“It’s literally a game change for business and life changing for individuals” Dr Ben Palmer co-founder of Genos International.
Contact me for a free discussion on how I can help your busines
An interesting question which popped in my head listening to TalkRadio early this morning . Paul Ross was speaking with Nick Harris – the voice of motorcycling commentating.
I’m not a huge fan of motorsports to be honest but my ears pricked up with Nick sharing some of this memories of Valentino Rossi’s 25 year motorcycle racing career. Valentino retired at the weekend.
Valentino was the only person to win championships across multiple categories – 125cc, 250cc, 500cc and Moto GP.
An amazing feat to win in different categories. Even more impressive not to have their career cut short through injury. As charismatic as Briton’s Barry Sheen – but on a global scale.
Was any of these facts behind my question – “Would you say no?”
No it wasn’t.
It was when Nick shared the story of Ferrari approaching Valentino to do a test drive with a view to become an F1 driver. Valentino did the test, passed and was offered the opportunity to join Ferrari’s F1 motor racing team. He said ‘no’! Enjoying motorcycling too much to switch – despite the increased revenue, adulation etc.
Having the insight to recognise what’s important to us and stick with it even when an approach like this is made, shows impressive strength of character.
Spending money efficiently for a business makes economic sense at anytime. It’s critical in this era of global pandemic.
So why do so many organisations invest in training for their teams – any training – without first assessing their Emotional Intelligence? It’s like building a house on a crumbling rock face !
Assessing the importance of six core competencies vs the demonstration of each by raters enables employers to be aware of the emotional culture of their business. Equally, it enables individual staff at all levels to see how they demonstrate these core competencies to their raters.
The uniqueness of Genos EI Assessments enables insights, actions, development areas and timelines to be set. Enabling gaps to be closed and real, sustained growth of the individual.
It’s super quick to complete online with a total of 42 questions to answer and supporting context text.
The coaching sessions and development book can be delivered virtually or in person.
Why is such a simple step missed?
Interested? contact me for more information or join a free session ‘Jump into Emotional Intelligence’ by using the link below to register: