Pro Code #84: Show Emotion
Emotions have gotten a bad rap around the office. Perhaps dramatic tear-fests at the water cooler or heated debates in front of clients have tainted them where you work. When they are thoughtfully managed, however, emotions are instrumental in building relationships.
Is your approach that you need to be a steely, tight-lipped leader? You could be seen as the enemy. Perhaps it’s time to consider Pro Code #84: “Emotions are your friend. Express them often.”
Our emotions make us vulnerable, don’t they? Here’s the thing – vulnerability isn’t always a bad thing. It makes us human. As a leader, it’s important for your team to see you as human instead of a robot.
“Most leaders hold a mental model that prevents them from sharing very much about themselves, that makes it more difficult for other people to connect with them,” says Carole Robin, instructor of Interpersonal Dynamics for High-Performance Executives at Stanford University*. When your team members don’t know you, they will likely find it hard to trust you. And trust makes or breaks a relationship and a team.
The next time you stifle a laugh, silence a thought, or hide a tear, consider letting it out instead. Might your team members feel heard, appreciated, understood, or liked? Might you realize you have more in common with your colleagues than you realized? Spend time being yourself and showing a little emotion for the sake of saving relationships instead of saving face at the office.
Sometimes showing emotion means admitting you need assistance. Pro Code #47 is all about the art of delegating.
*The Importance of Showing Emotion, Human Resources Executive Online