Tag Archives: emotional labor

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different personalities

Different Personalities Require Emotional Labor

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Working with different personalities can feel like a strain. It is true of all workplaces. Sometimes it is a peer, sometimes a boss, and as a supervisor it can be working with a direct report. Do you struggle with one or more different personalities?

Important Factors

First, and perhaps most importantly, you are not alone. If you feel like there are not any different personalities across the team, you may be the one who is different.

Another important factor to keep in mind is that you likely won’t change the behavior of others. What you can change is your reactions to behaviors that cause you to personally struggle.

We often call the emotional moans, groans, and strains of difficultly in the workplace, emotional labor. It is the work that you don’t want to do, but you must do, or it is the work that requires you to reach outside of your comfort zone.

Chances are good that in one form or another, you own some of the difficulty with navigating various personalities in your workplace.

How So?

For example, some people feel taken advantage of with performing the tasks and duties that are others responsibility. When you look at the evolution of how that happened it is often because the person became a crutch for someone else.

Certainly, teamwork and pitching in are valuable and appropriate, but nearly always there will be someone who will consciously or subconsciously begin to expect you’ll pick up the pieces in the future.

You can ask the other person to change. Good luck. A better alternative is to change the way you react to daily scenarios with this person.

Free yourself from being the crutch and things will change. Of course, with that said, the person who has been relying on you as a crutch will likely have some complaints that you will have to resolve.

Different Personalities

Many experts identify between about six to ten different personality categories in the workplace. What becomes more interesting is that there often is a blending of two or more of these traits with any individual.

Prepare yourself, you’ll have to put in some additional emotional labor. You’ll need to be accountable to yourself to make changes that aren’t comfortable. Short term pain for long-term gain.

If you don’t make changes, the constant drain can bring you and others down. Don’t be the victim.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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using empathy

Leadership Habit 35: Using Empathy

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It seems that most people are promoted in organizations because they’ve shown strong technical skills. They have impressed the CEO with their knowledge and comprehension of business requirements. Are they effectively using empathy?

Technical Expertise

Technical skills are important. The newsflash is, they are not everything. One of the hardest things for emerging workplace leaders is understanding the soft skills side of leadership.

Workplace success typically happens for the most well-rounded people. Certainly, some will cite that playing politics, having friends in the right places, and even gender will play a role. True, they may all be factors, but long-term leadership success needs empathy.

Technical skills won’t take you very far when no one respects the work. Things may implode when no one understands the values, the hardships, and the beliefs required to carry on when everyone wants to quit.

Power of Empathy

Often the hardest skill for the workplace leader is to understand and develop the power of empathy. It is often disregarded as not needed, too soft, or not logical and therefore not required.

In some circles it is common to hear, “Remove the emotion!” And every time a person in a leadership role says that they have just moved one notch farther away from a team who has passion.

Certainly, there are times when decisions must be made that are difficult. They tug at the emotional values of those involved but removing emotion from any organization may be a step in the wrong direction.

Using Empathy

So, it is really the emotional labor that leaders sometimes need to master. They are seldom chosen, at least not consciously, for this skill, but great leaders have it covered.

Engaged teams are running on emotion. Emotion has a lot to do with empathy. When we feel the mechanics of the job are covered what remains?

Using empathy is often challenging, it can’t be delegated, and the emotional labor involved will require patience and energy.

As a leader, using empathy is required. Your team needs it.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten RespectNavigating a Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Best Work

Your Best Work, Working Hard, and What Is Missing

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Employees often feel that they are delivering on their promise. A promise to provide the best value to their organization. Are you doing your best work? Is your best work enough?

Trying your best is important. It has something to do with integrity. Trying your best though may not always be enough. At least, it may not be enough of the right stuff.

Technical Aspects

Knowing how to do a spreadsheet in Excel, how to spec the right materials at the best price, or how to manage the financial responsibilities are all important.

The web designer needs to know code and trends. Warehouse managers need to know storage solutions, traffic efficiencies, and even robotics. Marketing and advertising leaders should know the digital environment, how to leverage it, and how to evaluate the ROI.

All these things are important and are perhaps technical. You may be doing all these things, but you still seem to be coming up short of the promotion, the job advancement, and career path you desire.

What are you missing?

Emotional Labor

In today’s workplace environment doing your best work is not the same as filling in all the spaces on the form, checking the boxes, and signing your name.

In my experiences I find people every day who can do all those things and still wonder why they are stuck.

Certainly, there are varied reasons and sometimes people are not at the right place at the right time. In many other cases, what is missing is the emotional labor that goes along with every job.

Best Work

Organizations want to hire people who fit in. They have a hundred or more resumes of people who fit the technical specifications. Who is the one person who will fit the best?

Often it is not about your technical skills, you’ve checked all the boxes, your card is punched. Perhaps you should consider all the soft skills required.

How you communicate, overcome adversity, navigate generations, and your emotional intelligence is all part of your job.

It may not be a check box on your job description, but it may mean that you are the best fit.

-DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect,Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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emotional labor strength

Emotional Labor Strength and Doing Whatever It Takes

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If you were self-assessing, would you indicate that you have emotional labor strength, or is it really one of your weaknesses? Do you procrastinate about your workload, to-do list, or visiting your in-laws?

Are you able to jump to attention at the slightest whimper from your boss? Perhaps you would rather put off that task until you really feel like doing it. Are you really committed to doing whatever it takes, or only when it fits your personal agenda?

Is Easy Better?

A traditional or baby boomer boss may suggest people are lazy. They may suggest that the younger half of the workforce will avoid the tough stuff, or avoid things that annoy them.

Instead of making the follow-up call, they’ll send an email. Instead of responding to an email or voice mail they’ll do nothing. Spending time with the customer, well, that is out too. It is all just too hard.

In customer service circles a lack of emotional labor strength may be mislabeled as a lack of caring. Is it really a lack of caring or is it just too disruptive to the flow of doing little or nothing.

Caring will cost. It costs in hard resources like money and people, and it costs in emotional labor. When people are required to think, be patient, have empathy, be farsighted, encouraging, and do whatever it takes, we may discover who really has emotional labor strength.

Emotional Labor Strength

Waiting until the last minute is not a skill. Broken promises are not someone else’s fault.

Effort should be at one hundred percent and should never be considered as scalable based on the rate of pay.

Doing whatever it takes is what emotional labor strength is often about.

Laziness, procrastination, or putting it off forever isn’t strength, it is a weakness.

Regardless of whether it is about customer-service skills, getting along with co-workers, being flexible, adaptable, staying late, or coming in early, your level of emotional labor strength is what sets you apart.

If you’re wondering about individual work ethic, you’ve either found it, or not.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Emotional labor matters

Why Emotional Labor Matters More

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The daily grind, the grit and effort it takes to go to work every day, to exist in the World of workplace politics, the boss’s pets, and a paycheck every other week. It is what millions of people feel about their job, it is laborious. Do you think emotional labor matters?

Frequent Questions

Many people have great jobs. Many people take for granted what their daily grind provides. Actually, that emotional labor that they are putting in, that is what will matter the most.

What high school did you attend?

Where did you get your degree?

Did you get your degree online?

The questions all appear to matter and they are the essence of the job applicant, the hiring committee, or the card puncher. What may really matter the most is if you have put in the emotional labor.

Attitude, Determination, and Persistence

Emotional labor answers the questions about your attitude towards work, your discipline across the long haul, and your ability to navigate shifting environments.

The questions that really need answered are more about what you’ve accomplished. How do you face adversity? What projects or teams have you led? What is your decision making style? How would you describe your level of integrity? How do you plan for the unplanned?

The online job application and your resume don’t often speak to what you are really capable of doing. The weight of who you are, your strength, determination, and the associated outcomes are not about a piece of paper, or your digital application.

Getting to the door and having it open often comes from your resume or curriculum vitae, but that is just a paper trail.

Emotional Labor Matters

What matters more is the illustration of your emotional labor. That will be the best determinate of your future success.

When people ask my opinion about what will happen next with an employee, a boss, or their significant other, I usually suggest that the best predictor of future performance is past performance.

Put in the emotional labor, it matters more.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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Emotional Labor

What is Emotional Labor and Does It Matter?

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Are you tired of doing things that you really don’t want to do? Have you been patient with your career goals and are now growing weary of putting in the time? You may still have some emotional labor to endure.

Enduring the Work

The boss asks you to follow up on the delinquent accounts, but you suggest you don’t have time.

A project team member asks how the work is coming with your assigned task after the meeting last week, but you say you didn’t get to it yet.

Unfortunately, it is common that people drag their feet about projects or work that they aren’t really interested in doing.

Ask the mechanic if he wants to do an oil change on the eight year old minivan.

Ask the mechanic if he wants to do an oil change on the hottest model with the big engine.

Do you think the mechanic would spring into action for both of those scenarios or just one?

Many employees feel like they are asked to pick up the pieces for work that is not that desirable. It is common for people to feel like their career has stalled, that they have put in the time, and now they want more.

Emotional Labor

Emotional labor is a condition that exists when we are putting in the time. It is doing the dirty work, the crappy jobs, and picking up the pieces for others. It may be doing things we find boring, monotonous, or below our pay grade.

Have you been putting in the required amounts of emotional labor?

If there is one thing that every employee can do to make a difference for their career it is putting in large quantities of emotional labor. Certainly, no one wants to be taken advantage of and no one wants to do work that they have advanced beyond.

However, the best employees are putting in a lot of it. It requires the persistence, discipline, and grit to get it done, but they do it.

The employee may easily forget about emotional labor, but the boss usually remembers it.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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improve job performance

How To Improve Job Performance And Competence

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It often feels like you are doing everything. You do exactly what the boss suggests, you follow the rules, and work within the guidelines. Is it enough? Chances are good that you still have room to improve job performance.

Mechanics of the Job

Many employees connect mechanically. Which really means that they are in compliance with the characteristics of the job task. Many would suggest that they have the competence to do the work.

She enters the orders fast and with accuracy.

He always jumps right in and gets things done.

She can answer any question about our policies and procedures.

He is great with the computers.

She never leaves before wrapping up what needs done that day.

More Than Just A Task

What this really means is that they are competent with the job task. In today’s workplace, being competent mechanically is probably not all that is required. Putting the round peg in the round hole, the square peg in the square hole, and stuffing everything in a box to ship is really just mechanical.

Employees sometimes argue, “I can do everything required, why am I stuck in this position?” Often what they are missing is the ability to navigate the emotional labor requirements of the job.

She enters the orders fast and with accuracy, but don’t you dare interrupt her or she’ll snap.

He always jumps in and gets things done, but don’t ask for help in another department because that is not his problem.

She can answer any question, but you have to make sure she is in a good mood first.

He is great with computers but he always makes others feel bad by talking down to them when they don’t immediately understand.

She never leaves before finishing all her work, but she often makes mistakes in her rush to get things done.

Improve Job Performance

Being in compliance of what is required for the job task is important but today you have to put in the emotional labor too. Emotional labor may be having patience with others, the ability to navigate generational differences, or put the needs of the many in front of the needs of your own work.

Being able to dot the I’s and cross the T’s, is good. Skills to put the nut on the bolt, thread the needle, and hit the enter key are also important.

Today the best path to improve job performance isn’t always just about the mechanics, it is also about your emotional intelligence and the ability to put in the required amount of emotional labor.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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workplace role model

Being a Workplace Role Model

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Great role models are hard to find. What may be even harder is to replicate them. Are you a good workplace role model?

Certainly, role models may be situational. The role model lifeguard is likely a much different skillset when compared with a role model at the local factory, hospital, or burger joint.

Admiration and Leadership

Role models are often admired for leadership traits. How well do they lead under pressure? What keeps them driven and yet well-grounded every day? How do they stay motivated and professional at all times?

People have many common characteristics. One person likes to have some down time as much as the other. Many have interests or hobbies that are outside of the normal scope of their work.

Discipline and willpower may guide some of the best role models. What are some things that great role models don’t do?

Great role models don’t:

  • act on impulse
  • tell other people off
  • show up late
  • lose interest easily
  • complain

This is a short list the entire list is long. They are often great role models because they are masters of control, are willing to endure emotional labor, and care about the outcomes of their actions and behaviors.

Workplace Role Model

A great workplace role model doesn’t show up only when someone is watching. They are always watching for the next place to show up. They arrive and walk in like a pro. There is something in the air about their presence, not just when it aligns with something they love, all the time, good or bad.

The truly great ones will keep their promises, they don’t need to tell you that they are great, it shows. They are authentic, valued, and respected.

They do they work they don’t feel like doing, the work that is old, tired, and boring. Listening is important so they do it twice as much as talking.

Are you a good workplace role model?

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a five-time author and some of his work includes, #CustServ The Customer Service Culture, and Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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career patience appreciative strategies

Career Patience and Emotional Labor

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People interested in career advancement get pretty excited, they typically don’t lack motivation or drive. When is career patience important and how do you endure it while time passes by?

Your career is important. It is often how people measure their worth or success in life. Today many people have multiple careers. They may change from fire fighter to schoolteacher, or from sales person to a marketing expert, or any other role change you might imagine.

Employment recruiters and human resources professionals can tell you a lot about job seekers and career changers. They can share popular trends, what to look for, and even about how long to expect to wait before a change.

Although the earliest of the baby boomers weren’t big on career changes. Today career changes, job changes, and advancement seem almost necessary. People sometimes feel like it is a requirement to prove your worth.

Not so fast though, don’t jump too far ahead. Sometimes the best moves involve more patience.

Career Patience

Right sizing your patience is important. After joining an organization or team how long do you wait for advancement? Trends might be different depending on the type of work, but chances are great that the trends are shorter now as compared to forty years ago.

Senior leaders might question if you are ready. They might argue that you haven’t paid your dues. Often the suggestion is to have more patience. Is that good advice?

When we join a team we are often hired with a minimum skill or education requirement. We are framed to be competent because of our expertise, proven record of accomplishment, and qualifications. Job hops are evaluated and an interview or two tries to determine your character, attitude, and your ability fit.

Do you want to grow in your position? Are you ready? Have you proven yourself?

Your career is often not about just showing up. It isn’t even about your technical skills, your education, or your track record. It may have more to do with emotional intelligence and even emotional labor.

Emotional Labor

When you have to have patience yet be assertive, and when you have the skills, qualities, reputation, and experience, what is missing?

Sometimes we have to be willing to be patient. Patience is emotional labor. It is the work that we do without a manual, a technical skill, or background check.

Emotional labor is what we endure. It is the dress for success, speaking the language, and effectively representing where we want to be. It might be developing into the perfect fit.

We don’t always get the new job or advancement and then grow into it. We might have to grow out of the job we currently have first.

Demonstrating career patience may be the most hurried thing that you do.

– DEG

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+


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