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School Smarts + Street Smarts = Success

by Trilogy Partners on Oct 01, 2018 12:46:28 PM

When working with Trilogy clients, I often tell them the story of Mitch and Jack, two high school friends with contrasting personalities.  Mitch was a loner, a straight-A student who always completed the extra credit homework and was essentially the pompous, go-to answer man when the rest of us stared back at Mr. Carmen with dazed expressions.

Jack, on the other hand, was a good student who finished his homework during lunch, right before class.  He often showed up a few minutes late, usually detained by friends seeking his brotherly advice. Jack was a very good listener and involved in many school and community activities.

Many years after graduation, I saw both men at a high school reunion.  I found it fascinating to learn how their lives had evolved. Mitch graduated at the top of his class from an Ivy League school with a law degree.  He had moved around and through various prestigious law firms as well as three wives.  His continual complaining and negativity turned off our classmates and sadly, they drifted away from his table.

Conversely, Jack earned his Associates degree and started working at IBM where he was able to complete his Bachelors.  Through the years, he moved with the company and had been promoted many times.  He now led a huge regional sales team, was married with two children, had settled into a new home and was thankful he could become more involved in the community.  The same classmates who sought his brotherly advice decades earlier were still his friends.

Like many, I grew up believing that success in school equaled success in life and in the workplace.  Intellectual Quotient (IQ testing) dominated society’s view of human potential for a hundred years.  People with school smarts or high IQs, were analytical, logical, rational and could retain and recall information at high levels. At the time of my reunion, I was reading about street smarts or people with high Emotional Intelligence (EI) who can recognize, understand and manage their own emotions and recognize, understand and influence the emotions of others.

This new concept of emotional intelligence was clarified when I reflected on how Mitch and Jack’s lives transformed into such dissimilar directions.

So why is EI important for business owners and their employees? Scientific data shows a correlation between emotional intelligence and proven success in our personal and working lives.  Daniel Goleman, who first published Emotional Intelligence in 1995, shares that Johnson and Johnson found that in divisions around the world, those identified at mid-career as having high leadership potential were far stronger in EI competencies than were their less-promising peers. This is further supported by Travis Bradberry, author of Emotional Intelligence 2.0, who wrote, “Ninety percent of top performers are also high in emotional intelligence.” and states that there is a direct link between EI success and earnings.

Is there someone like Mitch in your organization? Self-perception, Self-expression, Interpersonal skills, Decision making, Stress management and Happiness can all be assessed in an emotional intelligence test and these skills can be improved no matter our age. At Trilogy Partners, we identify barriers and help develop emotional brilliance. To learn more, call us at 609-688-0428 or email results@gettrilogypartners.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy People are Better Leaders – Some Proven Tips to Improve Your Happiness Factor

by Trilogy Partners on Oct 31, 2017 2:12:46 PM

Have you ever worked with someone that seems genuinely happy? A person that others gravitate to because of their positivity? At Trilogy Partners, not only do we address business fundamentals, we also tackle behavioral and cultural issues and have witnessed first-hand the impact of positive psychology in the workplace.

What is positive psychology? It is the scientific study of “what makes life worth living”, empowering individuals to purposely develop an optimistic state of mind to live a rewarding and happy life.

Working on how to become happier, the research suggests, will not only make a person feel better but also boosts energy and creativity, fosters better relationships, fuels higher productivity, improves the immune system and even leads to a longer life. Data shows that happy people are better leaders, negotiators, earn more money and are more resilient in the face of hardship. Yet, there is no one secret to happiness. Each of us needs to determine which set of strategies will be most valuable. The following actions are happiness-increasing strategies supported by scientific research:

  • Positive Thinking: Gratitude & Optimism – Expressing gratitude is an antidote to negative emotions, a neutralizer of envy, hostility, worry and irritation.  Building optimism isn’t only about celebrating the present, it’s also about anticipating a bright future and noticing the right rather than the wrong.
  • Social Connection: Kindness & Relationships – Helping others makes us aware and appreciative of our own good fortune. When we commit acts of kindness, we perceive ourselves as compassionate which promotes a sense of confidence, optimism and usefulness. Moreover, these social bonds provide support in times of stress, distress and trauma.
  • Managing the Negative: Stress reduction & Forgiveness – Taking care of our bodies through meditation, physical activity and proper diet makes us feel in control of our health, reduces anxiety and increases mood-lifting hormones. The process of forgiveness, while sometimes difficult, allows one to be open to build happiness.
  • Living in the Moment: Joy & Savoring – Savoring life’s joys requires stepping outside of an experience and using our senses to embrace it. Data shows that when we make a habit of hanging on to pleasant feelings and appreciating good things, we are less likely to experience depression, stress, guilt and shame.
  • Achievement: Goals & Meaning – Committed goal pursuit provides us with a sense of purpose and a feeling of control over our lives – something to work for and look forward to. Having meaningful goals bolsters our self-esteem.

These strategies may sound trivial, yet Positive Psychology researchers have empirical data showing that when effort is put forth, they have been highly effective and are represented in the thinking and behavior patterns of the happiest participants.

Want to infuse more positivity in your personal or professional environment? Contact Blair Turner, Trilogy Alliance Partner, at bturner@gettrilogypartners.com or (609) 688-0428.

 

Driving Accountability in Your Business

by Trilogy Partners on May 01, 2017 12:05:56 PM

One of the most common concerns raised by business leaders is the desire to strengthen accountability in their organization.  When Trilogy Partners examines this concern with them, we often discover that each business owner has his or her own definition of accountability, and they all have very different views on what accountability looks like.  Let’s take a closer look at what the term means and the leadership behaviors you can focus on to strengthen accountability.

We define accountability as accepting responsibility; disclosing results in a transparent manner; being candid about your actions and the actions of others.  We recognize that defining the term is much easier than bringing it to life inside an organization.  The place to start is to look in the mirror.  Are you creating a team environment where accountability will flourish?

Patrick Lencioni, author of The Advantage, has defined four disciplines to help build healthy teams.  We turned these into four key questions that you should ask yourself as you examine the level of accountability in your organization.  If you can say “YES” to each, you will be driving accountability:

1. Have you built a cohesive leadership team?

To create an environment inside your company that will foster accountability, you must start at the top – by assembling a healthy leadership team.  That is, a team with a high level of trust and mutual respect, a team that lives by a set a well-defined core values and that is comfortable with healthy conflict.  A team with those qualities is passionate about addressing the truly tough issues facing the business and resolving them.  Team members believe in using data to drive their decisions, and they focus on team results more than individual accomplishments.

2. Are you creating clarity?

Have you answered these questions with your leadership team?

  • Why does our company exist?
  • How should we behave with each other, our customers and our vendors?
  • What is our core focus?
  • What does good performance look like? How will we succeed?
  • What is most important to do, right now?
  • Who must do what?

3. Are you overcommunicating clarity?

About the time you feel your answers to those questions have been well communicated, your team is just beginning to hear you.  It is essential that you define consistent answers to those questions and that you never stop asking and answering them.  In Lencioni’s words, you must be your own “Chief Reminding Officer”.

4. Are you reinforcing clarity?

You will reinforce your clear messages if you recruit, hire, orient, evaluate, compensate and reward your team members around the core values you have defined, and constantly discuss the answers to the questions listed above.

If you want to answer “YES” to these questions, contact Trilogy’s Alliance Partner Rip Tilden at rtilden@gettrilogypartners.com or at (609) 688-0428.  We have tackled the issue of accountability with many clients and as one noted, “Trilogy has helped our firm build a culture based on truth, knowledge, constructive debate, a passion to win, and the courage to face and fix mistakes.”

 

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