Like most people who work in learning and development, the last few weeks have been spent frantically transforming the workshops I normally run face to face into ones that can be delivered remotely. Initially, this involved looking at topics such as how to lead and motivate a remote team, how to communicate effectively and how to manage your time. This week I have started to develop a remote workshop on Emotional Intelligence.
As more people return to work, whether at home or in socially distanced workplaces it’s worth reminding ourselves of the emotional impact we have on others. Particularly if, like me, you have spent the last 9 weeks at home with only one other person!
The Emotional Brain
Great leaders recognise the emotional response of their teams, and we could all be more aware of the impact our own responses have on those around us. Whilst creating this workshop, I was reminded of an excellent model from Neale, Spencer-Arnell and Wilson’s book on Emotional Intelligence Coaching.
The model states that learning tends to focus on the Thinking Brain – developing skills and knowledge of people. Yet, it is people’s behaviours that have the greater impact on those around them and should therefore be the focus of our attention. In other words, our Emotional Brain.
Often we feel uncomfortable talking about our emotions and emotional responses to situations. However our emotions have a direct effect on our behaviours, and our behaviour is always having an impact. So, rather than learning focusing on our Thinking Brain we need to spend time on the Emotional Brain.
The EI workshops I have been developing encourage people to recognise their emotions, and how they are feeling at any one time. This isn’t with a view of saying whether these emotions are “right” or “wrong” but to try to understand ourselves a little more. And to understand how those emotions translate into behaviour.
Getting Comfortable being Uncomfortable
There has been lots written over the last few weeks about being kind to ourselves, understanding different responses to lockdown and looking after our mental health. Included in this is understanding our Emotional Brain, how we are feeling and the effect this has on our behaviours.
Now, this is an uncomfortable thought for many delegates on a workshop but, as a colleague of mine often says “we need to get comfortable being uncomfortable”. Creating this workshop has been a timely reminder for me that we need to focus on what we are thinking, what we are doing and, perhaps most importantly, how we are feeling.
I’m looking forward to working with groups on this fascinating topic and helping them develop their emotional intelligence.
We have all had to adapt our working practices over the last few weeks and, whilst online workshops are something I have done for a while, these have usually been accompanied by a face to face workshop afterwards. Now, all learning is happening remotely. For the last...