Updated: Apr 2
Years ago, I invited Tom, my sensei, to walk the floor with me, looking for nuggets of wisdom. During our walk, he stopped in front of one of the continuous improvement boards used by the frontline teams to conduct experiments, learn the scientific method, and improve results. He pulled one of the cards from the board and dropped it on the floor. As I reached to pick it up, another card fell, then another, and another. I looked at Tom.
Didier: What is going on Tom? Are you OK?
Tom: How do you feel Didier?
Didier: Right now, not very well
Tom: Good, you must feel just like your team members. The board says, “Quick and Easy” and those cards have been on the board for more than 2 months.
This gentle emotional experience provided by Tom was a gift that stuck with me:
It made me a better leader: I am trying hard not to break commitments.
It made me a better coach: I learned to insert “gentle emotional experience” into my coaching.