Creating the conditions for achieving goals, engagement, happiness and high spirits in our teams often calls for a highly evolved and thoughtful leader, one who embraces and is accepting of strength in diversity and actively seeks to bring on people who are not formed in their own likeness.
This calls for a level of mindfulness that many of us have to go through an evolution to attain. If you are interested in being a more mindful leader, cultivating a culture of trust which promotes productivity — here are some ways to begin and/or strengthen your personal journey:
• Listen to truly hear
We feel most valued and appreciated when we are heard. Leaders are at their most mindful when they stop themselves from leaping to the solution and instead take time to allow others to contribute — working to draw out their thinking and own their own solutions. When team members are given the freedom to implement their suggestions productivity and motivation levels will soar since they are more invested in the process. When talking to your team, focus on actively listening to them to understand their point of view. If they sense your understanding and interest, they will be more engaged, committed and able to work towards better outcomes. Then, if you feel that your own opinion is of any value, you can offer to give later in the process.
• Develop your Emotional Intelligence (EQ)
Leaders with high levels of emotional intelligence are adept at managing both their own emotions and the emotions of others. A mindful leader will invest time in developing their emotional intelligence understanding that EQ is something that can be developed over time. Leaders who demonstrate this quality will gain trust from their team because they actively make thoughtful decisions using both their head and heart being inclusive in the diverse spaces they work in.
• Empower Your Team
A mindful leader is conscious of the degree to which they are positively influencing those who follow them. Your team will be looking to you for guidance and confirmation that they are on the right track. If a team member has an idea that could spawn great results, empower them to pursue it by providing them with the resources and support they need. Remember to reward and celebrate your top achievers to empower the rest of the team to emulate them. Inspire your team to take on new challenges.
• Get enough rest
Be mindful of how kind you are to yourself and remember the importance of re-booting. Leaders are not indestructible! Lack of rest leads to fatigue, stress and an inability to see or think clearly and a serious decline in productivity both in yourself and your team. Stepping away from it all helps to broaden perspective and encourages new ideas to flood in. Indulge in a massage, practice meditation to relax your mind and body and seek inner peace (it’s worth introducing yourself to the Headspace App) or go for a walk in nature. Getting enough rest will enable you to be more mindful of your decisions, behaviours and interactions.
Tania Watson is the founder of Creative Coaching and an executive coach, organisational consultant and leadership specialist. Creative Coaching is a successful company dedicated to the development of senior leaders in organisations through one to one coaching, intact team development and group facilitation. If you or someone from your organisation would like to have a no obligation conversation about how Creative Coaching may be able to help, please email Tania directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.