[0] => WP_Post Object
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            [post_date] => 2015-08-28 11:28:31
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Emma Birchall is Head of Research - Future of Work at the Hot Spots Movement. Here she has the opportunity to convert leading research into practical insights for clients who are looking to find new ways of using technology to drive human capital performance. She will be a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference on 8 October 2015.   IMI: Based on your current work – if you only had 6 words of advice to give a business - what would they be?

EB: Bring back the trust. They’re human.

IMI: What does this mean? EB: From collaboration to performance to employee engagement, everything we know about work is changing – but our businesses are seemingly slow to respond. People are more attuned to sharing posts, writing blogs, and providing instant feedback through ‘likes’ and ‘favourites’ than they are to completing surveys, so why does our approach to employee engagement still centre on a set of fixed statements and a rating scale? In their personal lives people collaborate naturally with those around them and have an amazing propensity to share even when there is no immediate benefit to them, hence the success of crowdsourcing sites like Wikipedia. So, why do we spend so much time and energy in organisations on encouraging people to practice these seemingly natural behaviours at work? The challenge for businesses is to disrupt every process and practice in the organisation by asking: Why does it exist? What are we trying to achieve? If we were to start the organisation from scratch, would we choose to create this? And perhaps most tellingly of all, would this practice exist if we trusted our employees? IMI: Where should we look for further information? EB: For further information, take a look at the Future of Work website or follow us on Twitter @HspotM: engagement Source: Emma Birchall is a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference taking place on Thursday 8 October. This event has now reached maximum capacity however if you would like to be added to the waiting list, please email your contact details and company name to [post_title] => "Bring back the trust. They’re human" Six Word Wisdom from Emma Birchall [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => bring-back-trust-theyre-human-six-word-wisdom-emma-birchall [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-11 20:45:55 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-11 20:45:55 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 43901 [post_author] => 94 [post_date] => 2020-05-05 11:26:50 [post_date_gmt] => 2020-05-05 11:26:50 [post_content] => [post_title] => Building Trust as a Leader [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => building-trust-as-a-leader [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2023-05-15 15:00:15 [post_modified_gmt] => 2023-05-15 15:00:15 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 20891 [post_author] => 104 [post_date] => 2017-09-11 07:48:10 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-11 07:48:10 [post_content] => [post_title] => Developing Emotional Intelligence with Business Simulations [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => developing-emotional-intelligence-business-simulations [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-15 07:02:39 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-15 07:02:39 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 22610 [post_author] => 80 [post_date] => 2018-04-05 09:27:06 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-04-05 09:27:06 [post_content] => [caption id="attachment_22612" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Jack Welch was CEO of GE for 20 years. In a changing world, is he still the model for leadership? Jack Welch was CEO of GE for 20 years. In a changing world, is he still the model for leadership?[/caption]   When discussing the challenges facing business leaders it seems almost de rigeur nowadays to talk about the level of change organisations are facing. The challenge to equip leaders to build the future in these uncertain times is certainly daunting, with seismic geopolitical shifts (in this context the Trump administration seems to be the gift that keeps on giving), disruptive technological change (how many of us even fully understand the implications of bitcoin, blockchain and whatever new technology will be unleashed on us next) and even severe climate and weather events. The very ubiquitous nature of these challenges may however inure us to their real potential as both a threat and an opportunity to affect a true paradigm shift in how we view leadership, a classic case of an issue being undervalued through overuse. . The Concept of Leadership From the perspective of the 21st century the development of our concept of leadership is a little clearer than it may have been in the past.  From this remove we can see how the largely male, heroic models of leadership have greatly influenced the literature and teaching in this field. The business leaders who are most often cited, Jack Welch, Steve Jobs etc. are broadly from a similar mould and the models of leadership, with the exception of Servant Leadership (as a servant leader you put the needs of others, particularly team members, before you even consider your own, but how many executives really model themselves on this type of leadership?) extol an assertive, confident, out-going and mainly extroverted style. In fact, the Myers Briggs type most associated with leadership is the ENTJ (extraversion, intuition, thinking, judgment), which is described as the ‘general’, again exposing the military underpinnings of the leadership canon. We can clearly see this bias in the continuing popularity of books like Dale Carnegie’s “How to win friends and influence people”, the pseudoscience of NLP and programmes that teach executives how to create the right ‘impression’. Given the genesis of the leadership concept it is understandable that people might misconstrue the notion of leadership presence as the ability to impose oneself (and influence people), but there is real hope that we are about to experience a genuine shift in the paradigm. . Unhappy Influencers [caption id="attachment_22617" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Richard Boyatzis studied how leaders influence those around them Richard Boyatzis studied how leaders influence those around them and how that effected their lives and careers[/caption] . Recent research conducted by Richard Boyatzis and colleagues from Case Western Reserve University examined the relationship between the extent to which people adopted an ‘influencing’ leadership style and their later satisfaction with both their careers and their life in general.  Interestingly they found a very strong negative correlation between these factors, i.e. the more people adopted an influence style the less satisfied they were with their careers and lives. Boyatzis and colleagues did not have an objective measure of career success, so one could still argue that the ‘influencers’ did better in their careers, but Boyatzis’ research does tell us that irrespective on how well an outsider might judge your career progress, the ‘influencers’ are less happy about their situation.  The researchers concluded that those who adopt an influencing style are pushing on their environment and trying to get more from others, e.g. they tend to show a high need to control social situations. The crux of the problem, especially in the context of a VUCA world, is that pushing on or trying to control an environment that is in a constant state of flux, verging on chaos is unlikely to be very effective and will certainly lead to people being highly dissatisfied and unhappy in their work and indeed their lives. Now would be the perfect time for the leadership movement to learn the lessons of evolutionary psychology that success in a changing environment falls to the most adaptable, those who can outlearn their competition.   The Adaptable Generation This will require a cadre of new leaders who are less ego-identified with success and winning, who don’t see problems as opportunities to impose themselves and demonstrate mastery of the environment. Rather we will see the emergence of leaders who can go with the flow, adapt to new realities quickly, work through and with others as either leader or follower and pivot gracefully as cherished paradigms fall away and hard-earned experience proves ineffective as a guide to new problems. There is no doubt that the idea of women in leadership is in the current zeitgeist and may or may not create a fundamental shift in how we see leadership in the future.  I am however hopeful, that as the new model emerges we will see less emphasis on the old machismo of the ability to impose oneself on others and on the environment and more emphasis on the willingness to adapt, change and ‘flow’ with emerging realities. Bruce Lee used to tell his students to ‘be like water’, perhaps that is not a bad metaphor for what leaders will need to become.   imi-colm-foster-810Dr Colm Foster is Director of Executive Education at the Irish Management Institute. He has acted as a leadership development consultant to organisations in the US, Asia and Ireland, particularly specialising in Emotional Intelligence. The next IMI Diploma in Leadership starts on 2nd May, 2018. [post_title] => 21st Century Leadership: The Shifting River [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 21st-century-leadership-shifting-river [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-09 13:19:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-09 13:19:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) )
Billy Byrne

Billy Byrne

15th Mar 2018

Billy Byrne is an IMI associate on the High Impact Leadership programme.

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"Bring back the trust. They’re human" Six Word Wisdom from Emma Birchall
Building Trust as a Leader
Developing Emotional Intelligence with Business Simulations
21st Century Leadership: The Shifting River

Being an Authentic Leader: The Emotional Intelligence Connection

Strong Foundations

You can’t have a strong house without a strong foundation, and for a leader to be successful long-term, they need to have a strong foundation of trust for their team to follow. The idea of the ‘Authentic Leader’ is built around this idea of trust and integrity as being fundamental to long-term success.

Billy Byrne, during the first Advant-Edge session of the year, identified four key areas that can be used to evaluate, and develop, authentic leadership.

Being Self-Aware

Being aware of your strengths and, possibly more importantly, your weaknesses, is vital for seeing where you are as a leader, and how you can develop. The process of reflection can result in tough questions and tough answers.

This self-awareness moves well beyond pure skills and competencies, it also means evaluating those skills that allow you to connect and communicate with colleagues and clients. The impact a leader can have emotionally on their team through their day-to-day actions can be significant, and not necessarily positive.

‘If your boss is walking through the door each morning and you don’t know what mood they will be in’ said Billy ‘you will always be walking an emotional tight-rope. This will impact performance, and also your loyalty and longevity to the organisation’.

Being Mission Driven

A second core area in being a truly authentic leader is being mission driven. In other words, having a clear purpose as a leader that is aligned to the organisation. Without this alignment there will always be a tension between the personal and organisational ambitions and this will manifest itself through the leader’s team; if they don’t see their leader caring about the future, why should they?

‘The organisation shouldn’t be a vehicle for personal ambitions’ said Billy when talking about mission drive. ‘The purpose of a leader should be aligned to the organisation – this really means that there will be times where the leader has to put the organisation ahead of themselves.’

Lead from the Heart

Connecting at an emotional level and not being afraid to show vulnerability (when appropriate) is key to engendering trust from those around a leader. Emotional intelligence is now being seen as a fundamental pillar for any leader, often as much, if not more, than the skills required to carry out a role.

Lead from the heart (Photo source)

‘You have to do this with skill – and that’s where the emotional intelligence bit comes in – but you have to be in a situation where you’re not afraid to show that vulnerability’ said Billy. ‘When you think about the leaders you associate with integrity, it is the ones that lead from the heart that that will come to your mind first.’

Having a Long-Term View

Time is in short supply. Leaders today can become caught up in the maelstrom of the day-to-day business, putting out fires and tackling the challenges right in front of their eyes, but if they don’t take the time to take the long-term view there can be no real leadership.

If a leader is only concentrating on today, they will miss the challenges of the future.

‘Looking after your team is also taking the long-term view – making sure their ambitions are being met and problems being looked after. It’s not just about what they are producing for you today, but the potential of what they can do in the future’.

The Nature of Leadership

The way we define a leader has changed fundamentally over the last number of decades. Through studying real leaders, real teams and the effects they have on each other in determining business success have moved the needle.

The conversation is no longer about the loudest and the brashest, it is about those leaders that can skilfully connect with those around them at an authentic level.

Billy Byrne is an IMI associate on the High Impact Leadership programme.

He is an executive coach, leadership development specialist and an associate at KinchLyons, Organisational Psychologists. Billy holds masters degrees in organisational behaviour and coaching. He is a chartered fellow of CIPD and Council Member of EMCC. To date he has completed sixteen marathons.

For more on coaching and how it can impact individuals and the organisation as a whole, explore our IMI Diploma in Executive Coaching.