HERE AND NOW
A Message From Our CEO, Laurie Cure
We are well on our way into the New Year, which often brings a new attitude and commitment to ourselves and others. This year feels different for many. A continued pandemic that never seems to end, a Great Resignation that has upended leaders both personally and professionally, and environmental tragedies from fires to tornadoes have rocked us from our center. Yet, despite the fact that we are operating in many emotional spaces, hope remains strong as we enter 2022.
One of my first sessions of the season was leading our Conscious Coach cohort through a refresh workshop. Being present to their joy and suffering left me reminded of the importance of the work we do in the world. More than anything, our role as leaders is to ensure the health and wellness of ourselves and our teams. Not an easy task right now and still more important than ever before.
As you proceed into this New Year, which promises to bring learning and growth, I encourage you to take a moment to reconnect to yourself and your own humanity. Kahlil Gibran wrote, “Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding”.
May 2022 be the year where we create a deeper understanding resulting from the pain of the past few years. May we have the strength to discard the self that no longer serves us, and may we awaken to who we are in this moment and the moments to come. May we allow ourselves to surrender and be in flow, like the river that must cut through the rock. May we be in connection with those who want the best for us and can help us weather the storm.
In our work, we see you and the various places you sit on the continuum—from exhausted, resigned, and burned-out to revitalized, curious and willing. We might find ourselves in any number of places and we hope you continue to rely on us to support you (at the exact place you are), walk with you and hold the light at the end of the tunnel. Making sense of our experience doesn’t happen alone—we need friends, colleagues, and experts along the journey.
DID YOU KNOW
As the pandemic continues, many of your employees are actively seeking to leave you. A recent PwC survey indicated that 88% of executives are seeing higher turnover and 65% of employees are looking for a new job. The Great Resignation is upon us. How will you retain your workforce and keep them engaged? We have seen this headline before, and I may have even written it a time or two. 24 months into the covid-19 pandemic, there is still no finish line in sight-and perhaps there will be none. The future of employee engagement and of work is starting to look like a game of chess. After the first move in chess, there are only 400 ways the game can go. However, only 2 moves later, over 121 million possibilities can unfold. In every game, a scenario that has never occurred before slowly reveals itself. As leaders, we have been advised to ebb and flow, maintain agility, and ride the wave, but what exactly does that mean and how do we do it?
1. Shift your thinking. According to McKinsey Global Institute, the pandemic has accelerated existing trends in remote work, e-commerce, and automation with up to 25 percent more workers than previously estimated needing to switch occupations. Our evolving environment is causing a shift in the mix of occupations and requirements needed in the labor market. If we continue believing that we are moving back to normal, things will be the same again soon, or we can operate as we have been, we are fooling ourselves. It was Einstein who said, “we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used to create them”. Unfortunately, if we knew how to think differently, we would. Shifting your thinking requires you to evaluate your mental models, learn new ways of assessing both problems and solutions and, most importantly, evoke a possibility mindset to expand your options. Coaching can be a critical support strategy to assist you in this area and guided team sessions can aid your department in transformative thinking. Shifting your thinking requires a psychological transformation in your way of being and this rarely happens without some help along the way.
2. Expand your knowledge around employee engagement. There was a time when research informed us that leaders held the sole responsibility for engagement and turnover. We were told that employees leave leaders, not the organization. While that may hold true in some respect and we know that a leader’s role is still vitally important, new research confirms that team and organizational variables may be equally, if not more important. Evolving research shows that work environment and team/co-worker relationships have the greatest influence on employee engagement. Leadership must then focus on these aspects of the workplace if they are to successfully retain highly engaged team members.
The following graphic from research by Saks (2019) shows the complexity of employee engagement.
If we are unable, as a leader and organization, to positively impact the antecedents in a way that drives a fulfilling workplace, we risk the consequences of turnover, decrease satisfaction and organizational commitment, and burnout.
3. Don’t waste the opportunity. It’s not always bad that employees leave and transition. While we know the financial costs and the negative implications of employee turnover, we also know that there is a greater exodus occurring in our work environments with a momentum that cannot be stopped. Business, and leadership, are changing. Our teams and organizations are requiring new structures, skills, and team composition. Attrition allows us to rearrange the chess pieces so we can be more effective in hit future. Do not return to the same old same old. As transition occurs, use this opportunity to build your organization and your team differently, in a way that better aligns to emerging environments and changes.
It can be tempting to try and figure this all out on your own, but our new world is too complex to go it alone. Reaching out to other colleagues or mentors in your industry, establishing professional think tanks, or accessing consulting expertise can be a lifeline in this ever-changing world we find ourselves in.
GOOD FOR YOU
THE CONSCIOUS COACH Creating a coaching culture within your organization requires leaders who can build teams, establish strong relationships, and achieve results in a new way. By developing key coaching competencies such as awareness, presence, listening, trust-building, and managing goals and accountability, your leaders can transform engagement and performance.
The Conscious Coach is designed to:
- Develop skilled coaches within your organization who can be deployed to support existing and emerging leaders
- Provide an avenue for individual coaches to develop their skills and seek ICF certification if they choose to pursue this option
Whether you are an organizational coach or an independent coach, the skills you develop in this program will enable you to help organizations achieve extraordinary business results, experience unexpected transformation, and unlock potential. The Conscious Coach program, based on the principles of emotional intelligence (the ability to perceive, control and express one’s emotions and to handle interpersonal relationships wisely and empathetically) applied to coaching, is highly experiential. It blends pre-work assessments with learning about coaching competencies, course discussions, self-reflection, small group exploration, and real-time coaching practice in a safe and enjoyable environment. Throughout this course, you will deepen your coaching skills and build a foundation for a successful coaching practice, either inside an organization or independently. Learn, Explore, and Practice
- Emotional intelligence applied to coaching
- Self-awareness and emotional regulation
- Social awareness and intuition
- Relational awareness and communication
- Mental models and unconscious bias
- Resilience, self-care, optimism, and gratitude
- ICF core coaching competencies
- Establishing agreements with the coachee
- Creating a trusting, safe coaching container
- Presence and active listening
- Curiosity and powerful questions
- Coaching ethics and best practices
- Team dynamics and coaching
- “Fishbowl” live practice coaching sessions
- Orientation video conference, program pre-work, and assessments
- Series of live interactive group workshops either online, in person, or a combination
- Accountability partnership
- Final coaching capstone presentation
- Real-life application of learning over time
- Mentor coaching
- Guidance and orientation to apply for ICF’s Associate Certified Coach credential through the Portfolio Path
IN THE NEWS
Beating Burnout and Compassion Fatigue in the New Year
How to Handle Negativity Without Being Annoyingly Positive
Leveraging the Strengths of a Multicultural Team During an Ongoing Pandemic
MEET OUR TEAM
We’re excited to introduce you to our awesome team, beginning with our most recent additions: