Moods and Emotions are Contagious

A few very helpful thoughts (quoted directly) from 'Boundaries for Leaders' by Dr Henry Cloud, from his chapter 'The emotional climate that makes brains perform'.

The cold, hard scientific facts are that your people think better when they are not stressed, afraid, or depressed.  Yet many leaders do not put a lot of thought into creating a positive emotional climate for their people, and sometimes they create the exact opposite.

Mood research in scientific studies has shown that moods and emotions, both positive and negative, are "contagious." We "pass on" good or bad feelings and "infect" others' well-being.

So ask yourself: What kind of mood and energy am I fostering when I enter a room?  When I give feedback?  When I make a request?  When I make a correction?  When I communicate agenda and set performance targets?  Further, what kinds of experiences am I building into my teams, reporting relationships, culture, and climate that make sure that there are positive chemicals flowing through the brains of my people?

So how do you create positive emotional climates and avoid negative ones?  Begin with paying attention to your own emotions and then developing a healthy emotional climate with your teams and in your culture.

Question to Ask: What kind of emotional tone do your team and culture have now?  What creates that tone, either positive or negative, and what can you do to make it better?