Tips That Can Help You Tune In

Emotional intelligence is like rapport. With emotional intelligence you are able to tune in to the behavior and emotions of others and make adjustments so the relationship flows.

You see it when teams work well together.  They move in sync, in rhythm.

For some, this comes naturally, and for others it requires a conscious effort.   However, the payoff is worth the effort.
People who have good rapport with others:

  • experience increased happiness,
  • solve problems more creatively,
  • perform at a higher level, and
  • are more fulfilled.

In a world filled with techno-communication at unprecedented speeds, it is easy to understand why some psychologists predict we are losing our ability to develop rapport–even with the people we care most about.  Do not let that happen to you or the people you are leading. Here are some tips that can help you tune in to those around you to build rapport and create meaningful relationships:

  • Look people in the eye. Rapport is strengthened when eyes lock.
  • Show real interest in others. Stop what you’re doing and be an enthusiastic listener.
  • Ask questions to help others open up.
  • Enjoy comfortable silence. You do not always need to talk to connect.
  • Show appreciation for small, routine things as well as big accomplishments.
  • Share your thoughts and feelings.

As you practice building rapport today, be on the lookout for others doing the same.  Notice the flow.

Continually grow your emotional intelligence by paying attention to the physical and emotional rhythms of those around you and be prepared to make smooth adjustments as needed to honor others and yourself.

When that happens, life flows like a well-rehearsed melody.

How can you tune in today for better connections with others?

The Impact of Assumptions on Leadership

The Impact of Assumptions on Leadership

We all make assumptions. We naturally fill in gaps in what we think and perceive so that we can make sense out of our world and our experiences.

Sometimes the assumptions we make are accurate; sometimes they are inaccurate. Sometimes assumptions are productive; sometimes they are counter-productive. Sometimes assumptions build community; sometimes they destroy. Sometimes they save us time; sometimes they waste time. The assumptions you make can build bridges or destroy them. They can make peace or start a war.

Picture someone whom you know pretty well. What is one assumption you make about that person? Where does your assumption come from? Why do you have that assumption? How does that assumption influence your behavior toward this person? Have you ever asked the person to confirm or refute your assumption? What would happen if you shared your assumption with this person?

As a leader, you have an obligation to notice you are making assumptions and then to check them out, particularly when you make an assumption that is negative in nature. Negative assumptions are particularly risky to hold on to. They create resistance and resentment. They fuel blame and anger. They get in the way of productivity and positivity.

The first step is to notice the presence of an assumption. Once you notice that you are making an assumption, consider communicating it. The purpose of communicating it is to have it confirmed or denied. This creates open communication, honesty, and an opportunity to clear the air or rectify a misunderstanding.

There are different ways to communicate an assumption. One way, perhaps the simplest, is to say it directly – tell the other person that you are carrying an assumption, and that you want to share it with him or her to determine if it is accurate or not. It may sound risky – and sometimes it is – and an unspoken negative assumption is much more dangerous than one that is spoken. When an assumption is brought out, an opportunity for healing, growth, productivity, and relationship-building is created.

If you are carrying a positive assumption, you have more latitude to decide if you want it to be unspoken, even unspoken positive assumptions can sometimes get in the way.

Whenever you make assumptions, you have an impact on your experience and the experience of others. Generally, it is best to notice your assumptions and communicate them to others.

To your success and happiness,
Corinne McElroy CPCC, ORSC
Edge Of Change