“Strong Leadership and Making People Safe First is an Imperative—Business Follows”

Today more than ever those leading us through crisis must have strong empathy and compassion first—business at-hand comes second. The human side of life must be addressed first to lead us out of crisis. This begins by addressing the most foundational human needs to survive. Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs defines the psychological motivational theory addressing survival—beginning with food, water, and safety—these must be achieved before other needs can be met (Maslow, 1943).

Now is the time every employer and their people need to prepare for when we can all return to work in the new norm—when it is safe for everyone to return.

Building a “scalable” business model just took on a totally new meaning and imperative. This is an opportune time to not only rethink the future of your organization (new business strategy) but to rethink the competencies and talent needed to bring your new strategy to life in a much more agile and dynamic way than ever before.

“Just as the world will never be the same after this COVID-19 pandemic,

neither will nor should your organization.”

“As long as we have learned from our experiences, apply empathy and compassion, and ensure the safety of others first—we will continue to make progress.”


Rapid Agility—How rapidly organizations and people are able to move from a “brick and mortar organization” to a “virtual organization” is paramount to maintain stability in current COVID-19 crisis and in future uncertain times including when the next pandemic or catastrophe takes place—it is not a matter of “if” it is a matter of “when”.

Inspirational Leadership Matters—The faster an organization’s leadership and its employees can act to keep the momentum and gain stability during and after crisis—the more likely such organization will achieve a sustainable future. It all begins with having the right leadership and the right people in the right seats then a progressive future is possible. Now is the time to be thinking about whether you have the right leadership and people in the right seats moving into your “new norms”. Please be certain—this is not saying layoffs—it is saying restructuring so that you are leveraging your current bench strength and adding new leadership and talent strengths where you are weak or missing what is needed.

Gifford Thompson posits “Inspiration and leadership are inseparable. If you cannot inspire your team to achieve greatness, if you cannot inspire a group of people to follow your vision, if you cannot inspire people by your words and actions; you’re not a leader. You are an average manager at best. Inspirational leaders don’t accept ‘the way life is,’ and they are often uncomfortable if they are not living their purpose, and sharing it with the world. We were all born with unique gifts to share, but we are often thrown off track by taking a job that is safe, and has great benefits but isn’t fulfilling—we may be good at it, we may be the best at it, but it does not bring out the greatness trapped inside of us begging to come out (Thompson, 2020).”

Brandy Schade, Strengthology Leadership Consultant, shared with me during a recent conversation we were having on what competencies great managers possess. Brandy posited “the key traits to look for in a person when promoting or hiring someone into a leadership role are they:

• Motivate every single employee to act and engage employees with a compelling mission and vision.

• Have the assertiveness to drive outcomes and the ability to overcome adversity and resistance.

• Create a culture of clear accountability.

• Build relationships that create trust, open dialogue, and full transparency; and

• Make decisions based on productivity, not politics.

All of these 5 critical traits are also competencies found within someone who has strong emotional intelligence. There is a plethora of studies that show authentic and most meaningful leaders must have strong emotional intelligence.

Brandy also shared with me a Gallop article written by Randall Beck and Jim Harter and published in the Gallop Workplace Business Journal that went into details about these five traits and when organizations measure these traits when hiring their managers, they were able to double the rate of engaged employees, and achieve on average, 147% higher earnings per share than their competition (Beck and Harter, ND).

“Companies fail to choose the candidate with the right talent for the job 82% of the time,

Gallup finds”

Motivating the Troops—What does the military have that the majority of organizations don’t have? Leaders at all levels motivating the people around them. A core leadership competency absolutely a must is the ability to quickly build rapport and trust with direct reports and all employees. This competency also happens to be a core competency of strong emotional intelligence. William Treseder is a thought leader when it comes to leadership and how to motivate others wrote a compelling article entitled “Military Secrets for Motivating Employees” that quickly points out the missing link and reasons why the military is so amazingly great at motivating their troops and what organizations can learn from the military’s success taking people from all over the world with absolutely nothing in common and—depending on the service—has between 6 and 13 weeks to mold them into a functional unit that is capable of executing complex tasks with relative precision.

Treseder posits “The magnitude of this task is difficult to grasp. It’s hard enough to get one teenaged male to do something (ask any parent), let alone dozens of them. Crammed together. Sleep-deprived. With weapons… On top of that, these young men and women are sweating or freezing for less than minimum wage. The bottom line, the Army, Navy, and Air Forces are good at motivating people because they have to be because military life is hard and you can’t pay people much. You may ask them to die, and you have to know they’ll accomplish the mission anyway.”

A common thread can be found amongst the best leaders—whether Spartan hoplite, a Japanese samurai, a Turkish Ghazi, or an American soldier—the ability to have empathy and an understanding of human nature. Napoleon demonstrated unparalleled insight into human nature when explaining the medal to his critics on how soldiers need glory, distinctions, and rewards. Treseder concurred “Things should be earned, never given. (Treseder, 2014).”

Team Engagement & Productivity—Brandy Schade, Strengthology Leadership Consultant, People who have fun and do what they do best on a daily basis are 6x as likely to be engaged. Teams that focus on strengths every day are 12.5% more productive. High levels of employee engagement increase profitability and productivity by approximately 20%.

Paul Zak wrote about “The Neuroscience of Trust”—and found that “building a culture of trust is what makes a meaningful difference. Employees in high-trust organizations are more productive, have more energy at work, collaborate better with their colleagues, and stay with their employers longer than people working at low-trust companies. They also suffer less chronic stress and are happier with their lives, and these factors fuel stronger performance. (Zak, 2017).

Shifting Mindset—It is not just about what an organization wants and needs to survive vs. become extinct—it is also important to address what leadership and employees need to thrive. A relevant survey by the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey (SEVS) used to evaluate the extent to which the Army Acquisition Workforce (AAW) employees are motivated. Here are a few of what was most important:

• Importance of their jobs and connection to their organization’s mission

• Understanding their jobs and performance feedback

• Encouragement of individual development and the importance of a healthy work-life balance

• Feeling empowered, appreciated, paid fairly, and having opportunities for growth

(Saacks, 2016).

Assessing Your Bench Strength During COVID-19 and Beyond—Virtual recruitment and virtual hiring now should be your “go-to” resources as you take a critical view of your current leadership and people and identify the gaps in strengths necessary to drive the future of your organization in the new norms.

Hiring Virtually—Leonel DeLeon, an expert in retain executive search placements, wrote an article recently entitled “Cost of Getting ‘Hiring Wrong’” and as I was reading it, I found the timeliness of his article to be even more profound because of what we are now experiencing and the entire world is dealing with during this COVID-19 pandemic.

Leonel further posits a few of the advantages of embracing virtual hiring practices, I have found are:

• Access to a larger pipeline of new talent—Global Reach with Local Touch

• Attracting a robust pipeline of more highly-qualified candidates—Breadth and Depth of Reach

• Leveraging technology, reducing time to hire, and making consistently good decisions with on-demand and live video interviews—Means Deploying Talent Much Faster Within Just A Few Days Vs. Weeks or Months.

• Enabling rapid screening of candidates and helps narrow the funnel to assess the most qualified, “best fit” candidates for each position—Finding Best Fit Faster

• Reduces the cost of hiring and increases better decision making—Mitigating the Risk of Hiring the Wrong People

According to a recent Gallup study “Bad managers cost businesses billions of dollars each year and having too many of them can bring down a company. The only defense against this problem is a good offense because when companies get these decisions wrong, nothing fixes it. Businesses that get it right, however, and hire managers based on talent will thrive and gain a significant competitive advantage (Beck and Harter, ND).

Leonel further shared in his article a recent survey from The Conference Board who have been conducting Executive surveys since 1999 shows that the world's top chief executives view the following as their Top 3 concerns in 2020:

• #1 concern is the risk of a recession (we are in a bad recession right now)

• #2 attracting and retaining talent (COVID-19 has caused organizations to layoff and freeze up combined with complete chaos especially when it comes to making hiring decisions), and lastly

• #3 competition and staying ahead of the curve while remaining relevant to their customers and employees (companies’ worst nightmare just became real)

Executives in 2020 also feel unsettled by trade uncertainty, political instability, and more intense competition from disruptive technologies (multiply this fear tenfold today as the pandemic has brought the US economy to its knees).

JPMORGAN CHASE CEO, Jamie Dimon, says he expects "a bad recession" and financial stress "similar to the global financial crisis" in the months ahead as the U.S. economy reels from the spread of the coronavirus outbreak and the lockdown measures being adopted to contain it (U.S. News & World Report, 04/06/20).

Leonel DeLeon, is the Managing Partner of Strong Tower Partners, a retain executive search, talent advisory and executive coaching firm specialized in identifying, attracting and coaching exceptional leaders to maximize organizational talent selection and talent management competencies and processes.

In conclusion, now is the time every employer and their people need to prepare for how their business will be conducted in order to thrive vs. become extinct right now and into the future as we all return to work in the new norm. The reality is organizations must build “scalable” business models and scalable hiring practices while leveraging this unprecedented time in global and U.S. history by embracing it as an opportune time to not only rethink the future of your organization (new business strategy) but to rethink the competencies and talent needed to bring your new strategy to life in a much more agile and dynamic way than ever before.

“Just as the world will never be the same after this COVID-19 pandemic,

neither will nor should your organization.”


Learn More



Coaching for Career Transition Success!

Posted on December 12, 2016 at 5:05 AM

Coaching for Career Transition Success! by Author and Blogger, Coach Jane Loya Ryan

Transformational Coaching creates a coaching model with processes and techniques and a new approach to personal growth through transformation. Transformational Coaching leads by example using processes like “active listening, powerful open questioning, problem solving, self regulation and observation. Transformational Coaching applies transformational learning theory components like critical thinking, creative thinking, objective and reflective thinking, collaboration and consensus building. It then leverages individual reflections into development and individualized coaching plans specific to meet the needs of the individual(s).

Transformational Coaching is used to assess, strengthen and create development programs that address transformational learning to achieve optimal success. Transformational Coaching combines Emotional Intelligence Coaching and Effective Communication Coaching. Coaching that drives personal performance and enables one’s ability to identify & achieve personal & professional goals. Whether an individual is seeking career coaching, leadership development coaching, executive coaching, relationship coaching or any coaching to change behaviors and enhance performance to identify & reach personal & professional goals, Transformational Coaching can benefit those individuals who genuinely want to engage in coaching to become better, stronger, and/or more successful in life and in business.

Transformational Coaching helps individuals strengthen skills in areas such as: Emotional Intelligence Skill Building • Intrapersonal and Interpersonal Skill Building—(Intrapersonal intelligence is being intelligent in picking up what is going on inside of us and doing what we need to do about it [self-awareness and self-regard]; and Interpersonal intelligence [awareness of others and regard for others] is being intelligent & sensitive in picking up what is going on in other people and between other people and doing what we need to do about it.) These two types of intelligence are connected to emotional intelligence.

• Mayer & Salovey: "People high in emotional intelligence are expected to progress more quickly through the abilities designated and to master more of them." From “What is Emotional Intelligence” in Emotional Development and Emotional Intelligence: Educational Implications, by Peter Salovey and David Sluyter. 1997

• Daniel Goleman: “People high in emotional intelligence demonstrate a human ability to focus on personal qualities, such as initiative and empathy, adaptability and persuasiveness.” From “Working with Emotional Intelligence” (Goleman, 1998 ).

Coaching can bring you success through Communication Skill Building • 5Ws and HOW • Paraphrasing for Clarity • Asking Open-Ended Questions • Actively Listening • Positive Body Language • Emotional Intelligence to Assess, Align and Deliver Career Coaching for Success! • Assessments of personality, emotional intelligence, critical and creative thinking, strengths and areas for development • Tailored coaching advice and guidance rather than “one size fits all” • Identification of Goals, Objectives and Gap Analysis then Building a Plan to Achieve • Emotional Intelligence to Align and Build Rapport • Effective Communications – the 5Ws and HOW, Paraphrasing, Open-ended Questions, Active-Listening, Body Language, Empathy • Critical and Creative Thinking • Resume as a marketing tool – Getting Noticed • Focus on your Intention to gain Attention • Personal Branding and Presence and Style • Presenting with Intention to gain Attention • Assertiveness and Self-Confidence • How to build effective career transition collateral (Resume, LinkedIn Profile, Professional Biography, Business Cards, Professional Photo) • Taking oneself to market – targeting prospective employers or self-employment or entrepreneurial ventures • Networking is Building Relationships • Leveraging Social Media • Interviewing and Negotiating in business • Leverage Strengths and Communicating Accomplishments to Differentiate • Dress for Success and Creating a Professional and Positive Image • Reflective Journaling for Self-Motivated, Self-Directed Continuous Improvement

2016 is almost a clouded mist behind us as we are less than 2 months away from 2017. I had amazing speaking engagements in 2016 and have a few more to go wrapping up the year with the Fort Worth Career Search Network on November 21st and December 12th.  And I am excited to already have a lineup for 2017. More speaking engagements are planned at the Fort Worth Career Search Network in Februrary, Frisco Connect Career Search Network, early Spring and at the Southlake Focus Group, early Summer to where I am blessed to be able to spend time with jobseekers of all levels and present my Emotional Intelligence workshop and How to Build a Strengths Based Resume.

I am especially excited about bringing my MOM, WOW and GUYS Group Coaching Workshops back by popular demand beginning in January the 9th, 16th and 23rd and 3 more are planned for each quarter in 2017!  Go to Upcoming Workshops and Events tab and sign up. These are so dynamic and valuable for everyone in career transition.

Finding Your Career Fit Takes an Investment in Yourself–Contact me to start Coaching for Success today!

[email protected]

Categories: Blogger/Author: Jane Ryan, Emotional Intelligence (EQi), Careers

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