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Inclusion and Diversity

“Do you ever feel like a plastic bag drifting  through the wind, wanting to start again?” Where do you get the energy to make that fresh start? How well do you really know you and your  work colleagues and really know each other? Do your colleagues know the real you and if not why not ? Do you feel comfortable opening up? Considering the amount of hours we spend with each other I still disappoint myself with the lack of “quality” time I give to my colleagues, really getting to know them. It is easy to forget they have interesting and sometimes even surprising lives outside of work. Qualities are often hidden. We often hold back from each other but we can all recall changes in our working relationships when the real person has been revealed.

Imagine with have 4 energies swirling around our bodies: intellectual, physical, emotional and spiritual  ( Steve Radcliffe – Leadership Plain and Simple) . Some of us have more dominant energies present than others and yes, we need all of them. I would suggest the one we’re most reluctant to unleash at work is emotional energy.  Emotional energy is the precondition for everything we care about. Dreams die when we lack the emotional energy to hold on to them in the face of obstacles. The magnetic nature of emotional energy can be a powerful force in the workplace but, many of us are most comfortable displaying our intellectual and physical energy. Providing a culture and environment to encourage the release of emotional energy is crucial to success and allows colleagues to shine and be their real selves.

If we only could take the time to really get to know each other and to look beyond our exterior make up/facades. Katy Perry ‘s recent hit “ Baby you’re a firework” succinctly describes the potential in all of us regardless of how senior we are , our age  or our background.  Unlike physical energy, emotional energy does not decline as we get older. Emotional energy increases the more you learn about what works best for you. Business and self development books talk about playing to our strengths. Firstly we have to really understand our strengths and secondly we need the confidence to act on them.      

“Baby you’re a firework come on, let your colours burst.”

“ You just gotta ignite the light and let it shine .”

A colleague on my team recently shared with me his personal story of his road to success to date and laid out what he wanted to do next. He lit his firework and it was a fantastic explosion of colour. It made me realise that I do not know many of the members in my team well ( it is a large team 40+ ),  and I mean really know them ! But at least I had provided the environment for this person to have the courage to step forward out of the shadows and shine. There will be so many more personal stories of how people have seized opportunities , have created opportunities  for themselves , how they have moved countries  and started from scratch and are on their way to be very successful and fulfilled .

If you can’t do what you want to do in life or if it feels very hard to do, you are probably lacking emotional energy, not physical energy. Try something new to get things re-started. Remember “ Baby you’re a firework” .

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4 Comments.


  1. Emma, as I read your article, I could hear Katy Perry’s song and incredible levels of emotional energy that it carries…I FEEL GOOD (that could inspire your next piece, couldn’t it?! :-)

    I love the idea of being a firework!
    I think that, collectively, we form the most beautiful and colorful one!

       0 likes

  2. My other favorite line in that song as “If you only knew what the future holds, After a hurricane comes a rainbow.”

    Recently a couple of members of my team have made some bold moves to switch to different areas that I am sure are well outside their comfort zones. It’s inspiring to see, and, though I’m sure the change may feel like a hurricane right now to them (and all of us), the rainbows are coming very soon.

    To your point, knowing our colleagues and being able to talk through such changes with them helps us see the rainbows that are just over the horizon.

       0 likes

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