Please enter your name and email address to download the 25 Reasons Why worksheet (PDF).

This work IS the work

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Doing the Work

70% of change initiatives fail to deliver the intended business impact.

70% of the workforce in the US is disengaged.

You’ve likely heard those statistics before, and that’s not where the value of this post lies.

Our team at eQ lives in a special space with our clients every day. We LOVE the work and impact associated with helping leaders and organizations beat the odds connected to the statistics shared at the top of this post. Therein lies the gold for you. We LOVE the work – and get this: the work IS the work.

What do I mean by that?

Often, when we start working with clients, they (CEOs, senior leaders, mid-level managers, front line team members, etc.) are enthusiastic, energized, hopeful, curious, optimistic, and, overall, excited for the possibilities that lie ahead.

Through our initial individual and organizational diagnostics, we surface many things that contribute to the firm’s current successes (which is important in replicating these across the firm, and to do so more intentionally). We also unearth barriers that prevent higher levels of performance, unleashing a team’s true potential. From there, we develop an implementation plan for how we will work with our client to improve organizational performance in alignment with their goals and vision of the firm.

We build lots of stuff: vision, core values, company story, growth models and business plans, sales and marketing strategies, systems and processes that provide space to engage with colleagues more effectively, customer experience frameworks, and processes and approaches to engage employees more effectively across all stages of the employee lifecycle.

Whew. That’s a lot. Seriously. These are many, but not all of the elements in our Growth Methodology. But you know what? Building these things, in and of themselves, doesn’t help our clients grow.

This is where those statistics at the top come in to play.

This is where resistance begins to show up.

Moving from the building phase to the action and implementation phase is where organizational impact really begins. Let’s face it, when it comes to organizational change, many employees don’t really expect change to stick. They hope the positive changes come, but the reality is they’ve seen so many false starts, so many “flavor-of-the-day” initiatives, and so many leaders not fulfill promises that the employees have given up in many ways. Heck, the leaders have even given up in a lot of respects.

How do I know this? Because along the path towards sustained, healthy growth, we hear things like:

 

“I didn’t know it would be this hard.”

“How much longer is this going to take?”

“This isn’t what I signed up for!”

“I didn’t realize I was going to have to deal with people so much.” (Really, we have had clients say that to us)

“In my position, I shouldn’t have to deal with this.” (If that is your attitude, please go do something else)

“I don’t have time for this. I’ve got real work to do.”

 

Read that last one again. And again. And again.

Let it really sink in.

Folks, I’ve got news for you: This work IS the work. That’s right. Organizational change and the various elements of our Growth Methodology aren’t additional things for you to do, they are the ONLY things for you to do, and they are woven into every element of leading a business: strategy, sales, marketing, finance, IT, customer service, e-commerce, recruiting, HR, operations … get the picture?

Get off the hamster wheel of trying the latest and greatest fad, get your head out of the sand, and get with what is real: treat your employees like customers, and your customers like employees. Get your head on right, put your focus where it needs to be, fall in love with the critical work associated with meaningful impact, and let’s really grow something special.

 

Andrew Freedman, Managing Partner at entreQuest, specializes in helping eQ’s clients grow by creating well aligned company cultures and strategies that result in remarkable client and employee experiences.

Posted in Alignment, Awareness, Consulting, Engagement | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Be Kind, Always – Impact from 3 Angles

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Be Kind

You may read this title and think, “Well of course you should always be nice, kind, caring, or whatever, but we want to do a lot of things we don’t actually do.” But I suggest you put this at the top of your list each and every day, so it becomes ingrained in you. You never know what someone else is going through AND your impact could be ten-fold without you ever knowing. Need some more reasons why? Let me show you why this matters from three distinct angles:

 

Ripple – Be more, do more

If you are reading this blog you have access to wi-fi, you are most likely reading it from a computer or phone, and something grabbed your attention to read. My point is, you have the opportunity to influence with knowledge and technology, and in the same breath you have the opportunity to be kind.

There never seems to be enough – enough time, enough money, enough, enough – but what if we tweak our mentality? What if we decide to be more and do more? We are capable of so much more than we can comprehend.

Why not push ourselves a little today to do something nice. Pay for the person behind you in line, hold the door and say hello, call a family member or friend you haven’t spoken to in a while. You never know the difference this could make for the person. You never know what someone else is going through, and just how good it can make someone feel. There’s a great opportunity for them to pass on the kindness too.

Just Because – We are Human

Believe it or not – it’s good for your health. According to a study conducted at Emory, beginner students were given a brief course in compassion meditation. The subjects were then placed in stressful situations in the lab, including having a TV camera pointed at them. The scientists found the meditators released significantly lower doses of a stress hormone called cortisol. Practicing compassion appeared to help their bodies handle stress in a better more effective way. This is substantial because frequent release of cortisol can lead to heart disease, diabetes, dementia, cancer, and depression.

As humans, we crave connection. And I don’t know about you, but a connection is not one associated with negative feelings. When someone does something nice for you, you feel connected. You feel connected to the person and to the feeling the interaction produces.

Two Way Street – It is Beneficial to YOU

According to ABC News, compassionate people typically have the ability to read the emotions of others better, and communicate their own emotions more clearly and effectively. The benefit here is not only that you are healthier and happier, but there is the potential to be even more successful. According to Professor Dacher Keltner, a scientist at the University of California-Berkeley, “People trust you more, they have better interactions with you, and you even get paid better.”

 

I would venture a guess that many people say they strive to be kind every day, but sometimes it just isn’t as easy as it sounds. If you need a little extra bump in the right direction, I strongly encourage you to watch this short video that highlights the ripple we have. It’s proof that you never really know what someone else is going through. (Oh, I might suggest you grab some tissues).

So, do not overestimate the power of kindness, it has a remarkable ability to change lives in ways you may never know or understand.

 

Whitney Sibol is an Associate at entreQuest and works closely with all eQ team members to provide employees and clients with remarkable experiences.

Posted in Awareness, Emotional Intelligence, Gratitude, Mindset | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Managers might be screwed

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Swimming with Sharks

Good managers are hard to come by. Great managers are as rare as gold. Which is why managers might be screwed.

People don’t find their managers and leaders as effective anymore. Most people, if not all, can recall experiences with a less than stellar manager. One who put them through the ringer, one who they didn’t trust, or one who occasionally operated in too much of a gray area for anyone’s comfort. Poor leaders don’t appear to be going anywhere either.

All of our experiences with ineffective leaders have culminated in the findings of a recent study from Intensions. The study surveyed 2,299 adults in Canada and found 26% of them believe an “unbiased computer program” would prove to be more ethical and trustworthy than their current managers and leaders. Even more alarming, and probably not surprising, for those aged 20-39, the number increased to 31%.

Yes, you read that right.

For fans of the Terminator movies it sounds an awful lot like the rise of the machines – except the only people who should be worried are the managers. Nikolas Badminton, a Futurist and an expert on the future of work claims, “People are losing faith [and trust] in human management, and rightly so.” Cue the development of programs to start doing your job. People have in fact lost so much faith in their leaders that 45% of those surveyed would like to start their own business or work for themselves in the future, because the idea of not having a manager is that appealing.

We’re individuals who were raised, and are continually told throughout our lives, to question everything. It is no wonder people are questioning work place norms like the trustworthiness and ethical behavior of our leaders and managers. After all, we’re all looking for someone who has our best interests in mind.

People will only continue to voice their beliefs that computer programs would be better managers and leaders. Unless their managers and leaders take action. I once wrote about what makes CEOs stupid and how a leader’s lack of visibility is the greatest contributor to leadership stupidity. As a leader, you absolutely cannot neglect your obligation to your people. It’s surprising how something as simple as increased visibility can move that 26% down.

We often find leaders unethical and untrustworthy, not because they are (although it’s possible some might be – however rare), but because their typical interactions with them are negative interactions. The boss pops his head in when you did something wrong, when you showed up late for work, or you’re behind on that project. A leader needs to show us they care about us. They need to show us their intentions aren’t just about the bottom line. Leaders can regain the trust of the 1/4th of people who would rather turn to computer programs for management.

This will only happen with an intentional effort on behalf of managers and leaders. If our leaders continue in their ways, 26% will only edge further closer to 50%, and by then the scale is tipped. A concerted effort to be better and do better is all it takes. Without the effort – managers definitely are screwed.

 

As eQ’s Writing Specialist, Eric Stewart works his creative magic to tell eQ’s story by putting our Team’s concepts, ideas, and methodologies into words!

Posted in Awareness, Culture, Leadership, Relationships, Trust, Truth | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Fight employee turnover with engagement

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Woman iPad

Hiring good employees is hard enough. Keeping them … well sometimes that can feel impossible if you’re excluding the one major component to retention. I’m talking about the power of engagement.

Engagement is something we have (and always will) talk about, because it continues to be a major problem for a lot of people. Statistics and reports are still showing, despite minor improvements, disengaged employees are by far and away the majority. Disengagement is one of the key contributors to employee turnover, which accounts for more than $300 billion in losses to the American economy.

The question remains: when you hire someone new, are you getting your money’s worth from them? Or are you contributing to the growth of that $300 billion? There are a lot of stresses when it comes to hiring the right person. And getting it right (or wrong) can mean big bucks.

The easiest way to combat disengagement is on the front end – the hiring process. By actively sourcing and finding the most engaged candidates for a position you will greatly reduce the risk of any negative costs. Not to mention, an engaged hire means greater longevity. Engaged employees have a 44% higher retention rate and have 51% less turnover than their disengaged counterparts. This means you don’t have to worry about going back to square one and hiring someone new, because engaged employees are active participants and are committed to the work.

According to the Staffing Industry Review, these individuals produce 37% higher sales figures than the average employee, have 125% less job stress (think happier employees), and are 31% more productive. The difference is remarkable. It’s night and day between an engaged employee and one who isn’t. Staffing Industry Review also claims, “Best-in-class organizations are 350% more profitable than organizations with average levels of employee engagement levels.”

Attracting talent to empty positions, and keeping them there, shouldn’t be difficult. And it isn’t, if you’re looking for the right people – engaged people. This is where industry expertise really comes into play, and if you do not know how to attract engaged people, then that is exactly where you begin. You must understand your company’s current engagement levels, what is lacking and how to re-engage them. This can start and end with your mission, values, and the core of your business. Chances are if you are not connected to those, neither are you employees.

 

As a Talent Consultant, Jonna Faulise focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Alignment, Culture, Engagement, Hiring Best Practices, Recruiting | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Test of First-Rate Management

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Great Idea

F. Scott Fitzgerald once said, “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.”

I’ve always loved this quote. Frequently, I’m confronted with questions from clients that require responses in various shades of gray, which at times, has led me to feel uncomfortable with my love of the word “and.” What do I mean by this? For example, “It’s important to incentivize individual performance AND create a culture of teamwork.” Or, “You need to offer accountability and consistency with meetings to ensure an effective use of time AND be flexible enough to adapt to changing needs or priorities.” (To learn more about how to establish the right balance in your meetings, see Are We Meeting Just to Meet?)

A recent HBR article entitled “Proof That Good Managers Really Do Make a Difference” connects the dots between a company’s people and results. The findings of the article are, “Better workers and better managers explain between a quarter and a half of the link between good management and productivity.” On the qualities that define the best managers, the article reminded me of Fitzgerald’s insight, particularly when Walter Frick, the author, writes, “It appears that the most successful companies are managed well in part because they hire the best managers and in part because they find ways to let the less talented ones move on. And attracting top managers means making sure they are well compensated for their efforts, but perhaps not so much that other workers get left behind.”

Why is it so hard for managers to navigate seemingly contradictory forces? It’s because managers are people and are challenged by the very real limitations of being human. Consider the fight or flight responses to stress. If a lion is charging at you and your tendency is to pause and evaluate the complexities of your situation, you will likely not live long. We are wired to make quick decisions that serve us well in true emergencies. Yet, how often as leaders are we making decisions when stressed that do not actually require us to respond with fight, flight, or freeze? Not very often.

Scientific studies have shown stress impacts decision-making in significant ways, including the adoption of, “A simpler mode of information processing in which alternatives are not fully explored … the experts conclude that stress narrows the focus of attention.” (See Judgment and Decision-Making Under Stress: An Overview for Emergency Managers). The benefit of this evolutionary tendency is to eliminate distractions in order to focus on what is most important for survival.

In some contexts, stress can enhance performance, particularly through the focus of attention. Yet, there are serious downsides. A narrow scope could lead to a critical error or “taking your eye off the ball” from another area of importance. Additionally, too much stress will lead to performance and decision-making degradation as fatigue sets in. If a leader wants to make sure he or she (or the overall organization) is functioning at optimal levels, start by checking-in on stress levels and making operational and mindset adjustments before stress gets the better of you.

Here is a quick checklist for leaders to sense if they are in the right frame of mind to make complex decisions with a high degree of ambiguity:

Pause – notice you are about to make an important decision and embark with the intention to be as mindful and present as possible.

Breathe – just a few seconds of deep belly breathing can calm your system and take you out of a stress response, enabling big-picture thinking.

Ask – check in with yourself or others on the urgency and time requirements for this decision. Where appropriate (which happens more often than not) negotiate for enough time to give yourself space to make a thoughtful decision.

Apply the three elements of this checklist into your daily routine and notice how your critical thinking and decision-making skills improve. And when it comes down to it, these principles are instrumental when it comes to being an effective, first-rate leader. The path to being a better leader and a better manager begins with you.

 

Abby Bradfield, Consultant, helps entreQuest’s clients achieve growth and reach their full potential to deliver remarkable results for their clients/customers, employees, and communities.

Posted in Awareness, Communication, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Mindset | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Interview your employees to make sure they stay

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Red Microphone

Our work environments are changing like never before. What was commonplace five years ago is already outdated and inefficient. The same is true for HR professionals. There is a very real need for change when it comes to HR in 2016. Candidates are calling the shots over employers in today’s job market, and with employees quitting at one of the most alarming rates in years, the real focus this year needs to be conducting “stay” interviews with current employees — in order to prevent the much less desirable exit interviews.

I am really impressed with the idea of stay interviews. Businesses move so fast and workweeks can be so overwhelming for most business leaders. Months fly by before most employers take the time to stop and truly check in on the health of their employees outside of annual reviews. Many employees are afraid or unwilling to speak up about their concerns unless directly prompted. Scheduled stay interviews will allow employees a platform to speak more candidly and feel more valued.

It is important you make stay interviews separate from your traditional reviews with managers. HR, indirect management, or even third parties could conduct these stay interviews on a quarterly or semi-annual basis to get a temperature check on how employees are really feeling about their jobs and about your company.

I highly encourage you to conduct these stay interviews, and when doing so, consider these questions to gauge the engagement of your employees:

 

“Do you feel that your job is turning out to be what you signed up for?”

“How does our company culture compare to companies you have worked for in the past or to other companies you admire?”

“Where do you want to be in one, five, or ten years, and how can we get you there?”

“What tools can we provide you that will help you to be more successful in your role?”

“Do you feel challenged by the work you are doing?”

“What processes can we improve to make your job better?”

“Do you feel that you are a part of a company that is making an impact, and is what we do fulfilling to you?”

 

These stay interview questions may already come up in annual reviews, but with the climate of the job market changing to become more and more competitive, employers can no longer afford to wait a year to sit down and have honest conversations with employees. Disgruntled employees can easily turn to job boards, recruiters, or potentially harm employee morale if not properly looked after. HR teams and business leaders need to step it up to protect and retain top talent.

Overall, stay interviews can be a fabulous catalyst for employee performance and the improvement of your business. Employees know your business from the inside out, so why not take the time to learn from their feelings and recommendations. Building stay interviews into your organization may not only do wonders for your employee engagement and retention, but also may create better processes and infuse new ideas into your business for the future.

 

As a Talent Consultant, Daley Navalkowsky focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs. She works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Awareness, Culture, Engagement, Onboarding, Talent Brand | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Y, a kids triathlon, and lasting community impact

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Children Running

Earlier this year, our very own Eric Stewart shared a blog about how the eQ team literally painted our goals and vision for 2016. It was a time for us to liberate our minds, stretch our imaginations, dig deep into our core, and truly connect with why we do what we do. As Eric so eloquently and simply put it, the exercise was about impact.

And it had me thinking … a lot!

I kept asking myself “What was my stance on creating a broader impact within my community, and causing a positive ripple effect? Outside of work, what can I do to actually live the values and core beliefs I express every day at work?” Mother Theresa knew this all too well, she famously said, “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the water to create many ripples.” Like most people, I wanted to cast a big stone, and see others cast stones of their own.

And then … the proverbial light bulb came on.

I sit on a community leadership Board for The Y of Central Maryland. As part of my commitment, I have skin in the game in making an annual donation to the organization. I can simply write a check, I can request donations from my friends, family, and work. But I decided to do things a bit differently. I came up with another opportunity. One that will allow me to live into one of the things I value most – my community.

Later this spring, a team of Y volunteers and I will be orchestrating an inaugural kids indoor triathlon. Every year, hundreds of low income families across Central Maryland are in a very real need of financial assistance so they can send their children to Y Camp. The triathlon will provide the opportunity for 30 kids to raise money and provide financial assistance to struggling families who want to give their children a safe, enriching summer, but can’t afford it. Through collective fund-raising, the goal is to provide enough financial assistance to send 30 children to Y camp in 2016. Individually and as a team, the kids themselves will have an opportunity to create impact, and a profound ripple effect within the community.

I’m very excited to see how our journey to the main event will transpire, and to see these kids really engage in this cause. The opportunity to have an impact profoundly effects these kids. Along the way it will be fun, rewarding, and maybe for some, emotional. Instilling these values into the children of our community is very endearing to me as a father, and being able to help numerous children across our area hits even deeper for me.

These kids, at such a young age, are already casting stones. Do you think these kids will help have a profound impact on the world? No doubt, they will. If our children are capable of such great things, so are we. Find your passion, live into your values, and help change the world one ripple at a time.

I look forward to updating everyone with a follow-up blog as we get closer to the event. In the mean time, what are you doing to make a difference? I’d love to hear about your passion projects. Share yours with me on my LinkedIn.

 

As a Human Resources Talent Consultant, Jason Nemoy focuses on finding the right candidates to fit our clients’ needs, but with an HR focus. He works with our clients to understand the exact skills and attributes that would fit with the cultural climate and their environment.

Posted in Awareness, Culture, Impact | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to create a learning culture

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Mind Map Learning

Technology is advancing at a record pace, so fast that most of us can’t keep up anymore. And with these advancements, the old ways of doing business are evolving with the times. The skills of employees must remain at the industry forefront in order for your business to successfully do the same.

Continual learning is important on an individual level. It allows your people to embrace new trends, learn additional information, and become more confident in their abilities. But continual learning is also a strategic business tool, one that drastically sets you apart from the competition.

Individuals grow through learning; and they spread their knowledge to peers and raise the competencies of the entire workplace. When you create an environment of continual learning within the workplace, you increase employee morale and satisfaction as well as provide a 353% return on investment. Fail to embrace this trend at your own peril.

Learning does not simply mean teaching new skills or knowledge. Instead, it is the active process by which an individual comprehends and retains information and later uses it in everyday life. By not just facilitating individual lessons to sharpen skills, but by creating a learning culture in your workplace, you are providing a space to continually allow individuals to improve their performance throughout life and support a competitive advantage within the marketplace.

Here at entreQuest, our employees are continually sharpening skills and driving our growth within a thriving learning environment. In order to create a learning culture within your company, here are a few suggestions:

 

• Begin to demonstrate the power of learning to your team. Elevate the group mindset to value the learning to come. CEOs and managers must support the learning culture for it to spread throughout the organization. Leadership development courses for management can help get the ball rolling toward a learning culture.

• Link learning to talent management. Work with employees to build on their existing skills and increase capabilities with a well-developed plan aimed toward long term career goals.

• Allow learning through multiple channels. Some people learn best through online courses; some need in-person instruction and feedback in order to grasp new abilities. Don’t stick with one learning service or plan, as this will alienate those who learn in different ways.

• Build learning into the onboarding process. An onboarding process is the start of an employee’s growth within your culture, which is why, when it comes to continual learning, it’s important to provide a structured program, supportive environment, and tangible expected results for the employee upon completion of this initial learning experience.

• Encourage reflection and sharing of knowledge. Allow time for learners to present new knowledge to the rest of the team. This will not only help individuals retain information and make them accountable for the new skills, but also help the team learn and encourage everyone to take classes and expand on their own knowledge.

Learning new skills does not simply benefit the individual. Supporting education throughout your workplace will create a learning culture, leading to increased company growth and placing your business at the industry forefront.

 

Ellen Lovelidge is an Associate at entreQuest and works closely with all eQ team members to provide employees and clients with remarkable experiences.

Posted in Culture, Engagement, Learn, Onboarding | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

The power of your words

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Microphone

There’s an amazing video (The Power of Words) that captures the impact we can create by being thoughtful about how we say, what we say. I’ve received many compliments from clients, colleagues, and friends for my choice of words in a variety of situations, along with requests for my “secret” for inviting people to more fully participate in their own success.

My core belief is that the keys to being a more effective instigator of moving people to new possibilities are preparation and authenticity – no great secret there. The “trick” is making the necessary effort to deliver critical messages that render the effect we intend. In the world of YouTube, SnapChat, Periscope, Instagram, etc., we’ve been told that words have less significance. I’d argue that, when limited to 140 characters, just the opposite is true. Scarcity increases the value of whatever’s in short supply. The opportunity created by the scarcity of well-crafted messages is significant. For those trying to influence others, words matter. To advance from wherever you are as a communicator to being an even better facilitator of engaging people in the pursuit of different and better, you must:

 

1. Create connection

Know your audience – Frame your message to be heard and understood by the people you’re seeking to connect with – language, tone, complexity, references
Express your point of view – Share where you’re coming from to help your audience understand your perspective – transparency is good for clarity and credibility

2. Make it uncomfortable…and, then, better

Hold up a mirror – Leave no doubt that the current state is undesirable/unsustainable
Open the curtains – Let people see the profound beauty of what’s possible

3. Incite action

Guide people – Give them access to things they can do
Move people – Share how you feel and find ways to engage their emotions

 

 

As you craft your messages

Whether verbal or written, when you’re building your message you must consider these elements of maximizing your impact:

Lead with your best: Your first few sentences need to pack a punch to capture and hold attention

Focus: Resist the temptation to add word stuffing — irrelevant backstory, unnecessary tangents, extraneous points, and verbal bludgeoning

Declare: Say it directly (“Your people do not feel connected to your vision.”)

They know it’s you: Ditch “In my opinion…,” “I believe…”

Reduce commas and the phrases they protect: Pithier sentences versus run-ons; if the phrase “in other words” pops into you head, use those other words instead

Verbify for impact: “Why Google, Apple and Facebook Terrify Banks”

 

 

From Bert Decker to Michael and Amy Port, communications and public speaking experts will tell you the bar for what’s considered good is set very low. Most people aren’t just affected (or unaffected, as the case may be) by poor communicators; they know they’re reading or hearing from someone who hasn’t taken the time to be better. We should aspire to more than just clearing that low bar. Starting there is okay, but let’s not end there. You can be better. Being better matters. Your commitment to better will enable you to take your audiences far beyond where they’ve gotten so far!

 

Jeff Lesher, Principal at entreQuest, blends his deep knowledge of organization design, human capital, and leadership with a pragmatic approach drawn from his own business experience and eQ’s philosophy to help eQ’s clients focus on their core purpose and move people effectively to action.

Posted in Coaching, Communication, Strategy | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gratefulness, the key to a more successful life

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Free Spirit

At eQ we talk often about mindset. An important component of mindset is gratefulness. When talking about being grateful, our mind typically jumps toward positive events – what is going well, what we have accomplished. While all of this serves as great reflection; gratefulness, to me, is deeper.

By digging deeper, you can pull out why you are grateful, more specifically what have you overcome to have that particular example stand out as a grateful moment. To me, gratefulness isn’t just about the concluding or the milestone moment – it’s about the journey.

Have you ever reflected on a moment where you felt grateful and thought about the path that led you to this moment? As humans, we focus a lot on only positive or only negative moments. It is imperative to choose views from a full circle perspective, not only to learn through your experiences, but in order to appreciate the journey. Respect the journey.

 

How does sharing self-gratitude and sharing gratitude with others shape mindset?

Gratefulness creates solutions and has a ripple effect. I am a huge believer in keeping a solution-focused mindset. There are very few things that absolutely can not be done. There are excuses and obstacles, but typically there is a solution to reaching the goal you set.

For example, tell yourself: “I am grateful to have the opportunity, the creative ability, and resources to be able to tackle this challenge.”

Gratefulness is contagious and is best when authentic. I like to surround myself with positivity, not puffery, in addition to genuine care for recognition and celebration of “wins.” As a society, we spend too much time focusing on what could have been, what we didn’t get to do, and what we did wrong – when instead we could use these instances to learn, to share lessons learned with others, and do better.

When you execute a positive force, people are drawn to you. They see the advantages gratefulness brings to your life and want to be better, do better because of you. There is much more purpose in intentional gratitude than everyday negatively.

Gratefulness is good for your health. Based on research shared by Forbes, gratitude is a stress buster and immune booster. Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and they report feeling healthier than other people, according to a 2012 study published in Personality and Individual Differences.

A 2003 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that gratitude was a major contributor to resilience following the terrorist attacks on September 11th. Recognizing all you have to be thankful for – even during the worst times of your life – fosters resilience. Having a resilient mindset is critical in many applications, personally and professionally.

 

3 easy ways to be grateful every day

1. Wake up and think of one thing you are grateful to have the opportunity to tackle that day. This will take your mindset from “have to” to “get to” – something we feel very strongly about at eQ.

2. Say thank you to those you come in contact with, from your barista, to your postman, to the person who held the door for you. A simple thank you can go a long way – even more if you truly show authenticity with it. For a deeper “thank you,” write a note to someone who has impacted you, whether they affected your whole life or just your week. Work this into your routine and write a handwritten note to share your gratefulness. Maybe this will be your ripple and that person will share their gratefulness with someone as a result.

3. Spend time at the end of each day reflecting on what made that day great and what you are grateful for – tools, people, life.

 

Start today – send a thank you note to someone who has impacted you, spend time thinking about what you are grateful for today and what you have been grateful for this month. I promise this will shape the way you approach challenges in the future and embrace the journey. You have the ability to choose impact, for yourself and through others – now that is something to be grateful for!

 

Whitney Sibol is an Associate at entreQuest and works closely with all eQ team members to provide employees and clients with remarkable experiences.

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