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I’m just back from the Mindfulness & Emotional Intelligence Summit.

It was wonderful and re-ignited my passion and commitment to help individuals and organisations transform the way they work and lead by providing the highest quality Mindfulness & Emotional Intelligence Training.

The big takeaway, echoed by all of the inspirational speakers is that:

The role of leadership in organisations now is to create the conditions where their people thrive and innovation flourishes.

“Every organisation is sustained only by peoples energy and imagination”
Ken Robinson

Role of Leadership Now

Decades of research show that human beings need environments where they are psychologically safe and have nurturing relationships to fully engage and do their best work.

The huge dis-engagement most organisations are currently experiencing is as a result of systems of thinking within corporate management which favours correcting fault and rewarding compliance (or the carrot and stick approach). The research has shown that this does not work. It actually dulls productivity and creativity.


Role of Leadership – how do you impact?

Goleman illustrated the impact of leadership style on the climate / culture of an organisation and why leaders now need to move from being a director to being an enabler. This shift requires developing their emotional intelligence.

Role of Leadership – Sustainability of organisation

The reason brand leaders like Kodak suddenly became extinct is not because demand disappeared but their internal systems got in the way of them being able to adapt to the new environment. Jeremy Darroch, Group CEO of Sky said that a business is not a singular innovation but ongoing innovation. He shared insights from The Better Self, Better Teams and Better Business EQ and said it starts with the leader…

“when you create environments where leadership… are clear on purpose, buy the values, like the culture, and know how to set their own goals and reset their goals, certainly you’ve got leverage going your way. The organisation is no longer an organisation that you have to push.”


Role of Leader in creating success culture or…

The human brain is highly social, we empathically resonate (feel what others feel literally) with those around us. So, the mind state of a leader sets the tone for the rest of the organisation. Encouragement and positivity breeds possibility and success, criticism and negativity stifle creativity, thinking/acting outside the box and result in failure.

85% of the ingredients needed for star performance in leadership relate to emotional intelligence and
the higher you go in an organisation, the more emotional intelligence matters.


Self Awareness is Vital for Leaders now

So, how a leader leads impacts the culture of the organisation – negatively or positively…

That’s why self awareness is such an important skill, as you need to tune into your own emotions to tune your performance

“Stress and pressures are never going to go away… Much of the pressure I see, people put on themselves…the way to deal with that (stress) is to really focus on self-awareness and improve people’s ability to understand the situation; understand what’s going on around them and importantly, to understand how they’re reacting to it.” Jeremy Darroch, Sky

Role of Leadership

Empathy, relationship skills, optimism all matter…

It is not just self awareness but social awareness and social skills are just as vital.

Martyn Newman said that people in organisations need meaning and meaningful relationships. Communication and relationship skills consistently foster the flow of ideas in teams and Sky’s experience confirmed this.

“the core skills of optimism and empathy, and the ability to listen hard, are things that have really flowed from the work we’ve done on emotional intelligence and mindfulness…I can see the quality of conversations, the listening skills, the ability for people to seek first to understand and put themselves in that colleague’s shoes, rather than jump to what’s immediate from where they sit. It’s just getting better and better and better.”   Jeremy Darroch –  Group CEO of Sky


“the skills for the future have a lot more to do with how people manage themselves and manage their stakeholder relationships… these are critical factors in the implementation of new initiatives or inventing new products…

and there was lots and lots more…

This blog was written by Joanne O’Malley, Mindfulness at Work.