Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Leadership a - z : O is for Optimism and Opportunities

Today's leadership a-z post takes us to the letter o.  Opportunities and optimism were two words that came to mind as I reflected on some of the most powerful leaders I've worked with in the international sector, as well as here, closer to home.


In today's business context it is easy to get lulled into the belief that everything is going poorly. Leadership plays a key role in encouraging their teams to find and sometimes create opportunities.

Optimism is one of the 21 competencies which make up Emotional Intelligence. As research continues to point to, the higher up we move in leadership, the more important our non-technical skills become, like building relationships, managing our emotions, and knowing ourselves. These are all part of the EI framework.

As Daniel Goleman writes in Primal Leadership,

"A leader who is optimistic can roll with the punches, seeing an opportunity rather than a trheat in a set back. Such leaders see others positively, expecting the best of them. An their "glass half full" outlook leads them to expect that changes in the future will be for the better" (Primal Leadership, pp 252).

Part of the skill set of optimism is about being aware of our perspectives around situations and being able to "reframe" how we see these. "Reframing" is a valuable skill, and moves us from a pollyanna-ish outlook where everything is great, to an acknowledgement of the current context, and a reframe in terms of how to view it.

Reflection Questions:
What is your current outlook towards business challenges you are facing?
What opportunities exist?
What topics/isues would benefit from you reframing?

Have a great week,
Jennifer

Jennifer Britton, MES, CPCC, CPT
Potentials Realized
Team and Leadership Development | Coaching | Retreats

1 comment:

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