Executive Coaching for Emotionally Intelligent Leadership - 3 Steps to Positive Leadership

Executive Coaching for Emotionally Intelligent Leadership

Are you feeling fully appreciated at work? Do you have the chance to do what you do best every day? Do you know what is expected of you at work? Does your manager know you and focus you? Fully engaged people at work can answer these questions with a resounding yes!

Most of us start a job motivated to perform our best, but sometimes working for a poor manager can be de-motivating or worse. Positive leaders provide leadership to help people unleash their creativity, improve performance and fully engage. Optimistic leaders rally people to a better future. They have a strong sense of significance. Who do you serve?

3 Steps to Positive Leadership

In 2005, results of a Gallup research study concluded managers play a crucial role in employee well-being and engagement.

Five years later, most leaders are acutely aware of the costs and benefits of engaging their workforce at all levels. Active employee engagement has strong linkages to key business outcomes, including retention, productivity, profitability, customer retention and safety.

But the Gallup research didn't study what managers did (their specific behaviors) to elicit positive responses from employees.

That's why Margaret Greenberg and Dana Arakawa put the theory of positive leadership to the test. Greenberg is president of The Greenberg Group, an executive coaching/consulting practice in Andover, CT. Arakawa is a program associate at the John Templeton Foundation of West Conshohocken, PA. Both are graduates of the Master of Applied Positive Psychology program at the University of Pennsylvania.

Greenberg and Arakawa wanted to know if managers who apply positive leadership practices have teams with higher project performance and employee engagement, as compared to teams led by managers who don't apply these practices.

Based on a great deal of previous research, positive managers practice these three leadership behaviors:

1. Use a strengths-based approach

2. Provide frequent recognition and encouragement

3. Maintain a positive perspective when difficulties arise

Past studies have shown these practices have a direct effect on employee engagement, and each is an observable and testable behavior.

None of these characteristics are innate, but all can be learned. Very few executives intuitively know:

1. How to work with people's strengths

2. How to automatically give frequent credit where due

3. How to respond with your best game face when the going gets rough

Are you working in a professional services firm or other organization where executive coaches are hired to provide emotional intelligence skills and positive leadership development for organizational leaders? Does your organization provide executive coaching to help leaders improve their ability to appreciate people in the moment? Leaders at all levels need to improve their emotional intelligence and social intelligence skills.

One of the most powerful questions you can ask yourself is "Am I positively supporting employee's well-being and engagement?" Emotionally intelligent and socially intelligent organizations provide executive coaching for positive leaders who help their employees to be fully engaged and happy at work.

What actions can you take today to be a more positive leader? What activities unleash your people's strengths? Companies need more great managers and leaders.

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 you work with people's strengths and ensure sustainable business success. You can become a 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.


Maynard is a consulting psychologist and personal, career and executive coach. He is the president of Working Resources, a leadership consulting, training and transformational coaching firm that develops people and organizations. We specialize in helping companies assess, select, coach, and retain top talent; leadership development; 360-degree feedback; emotional intelligence; competency modeling; succession management; career development and executive coaching. Maynard is an instructor with The...

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