Tag Archives: passion

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removing emotion

Removing Emotion, Why Emotion May Be What You Need

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It makes me chuckle. Not a happy chuckle, but a, “Wow, are you sure you’re doing the right thing because I’m doubtful,” kind of chuckle. Are you suggesting that removing emotion is required in your workplace?

Recently I had an opportunity to bid on a keynote presentation for a company retreat. One of the suggested paths for the talk was to encourage employees to remove the emotion in their workplace.

I won’t submit a bid.

Who Does This?

Engineering firms are notorious for this approach, followed closely by manufacturing firms, and ultimately any organization that may earn the moniker of Sweatshop.

Certainly, I mean no disrespect to any firms, in any sector.

However, you’ll likely find a bear in the woods, a taxi in the city, and a McSomething at McDonalds. As with most things in life, it is not representative of all engineering or manufacturing firms, but from my experiences these represent a more likely place to find it.

Emotional Pursuit

The last time I checked, emotion was a very big part of what moves people. Emotion is often the fuel for pursuit.

Is passion an emotion? What about excitement, is excitement driven by emotion? And of course, fear is an emotion, although it should not be regarded as a positive approach.

Organizations that encourage removing emotion will likely land with far greater problems than the issues they are trying to improve.

What are they trying to improve? Likely they are trying to reduce drama, poor decision making, and behaviors that signal a disconnect between the masses of the workforce and the leadership team.

Removing Emotion

Are you suggesting that removing emotion is a good thing? It is doubtful that this will be beneficial. In fact, it could make things much worse.

Instead consider discovering and exploring the kind of emotion you should have. Consider things like passion, persistence, and tenacity. All of which are connected to, or are, emotionally driven.

What are you really trying to remove?


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Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. 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.

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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.


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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