"What have you done to us?" - a voice from Alleimas Leadership Program

"What have you done to us?"

Kristina Vallin

What have you done to us?

Kristina Vallin

“What have you done to us?!”

The participant smiles while saying this during the final check-out round after three intense leadership learning session days at #högbobruk in Sandviken. The others start giggling, nodding their heads.

The content of this program has been worked out in deep collaboration with Alleima during 6 months. This resulted in clear and well anchored learning goals connected to the Alleima strategy and long term goals, a substantial digital training and well designed physical learning sessions. 100 leaders will have passed the program this year. It is clearly an understatement that project leadership skills have been key in rolling this out!

So what did he mean “done to us”? It gives the connotation of being subject to influence rather than co-creator of learning. And yes, we really did design the entire program to enhance self-leadership and autonomy. Well – it was so simple it could really have gone lost in translation.

Me and my brilliant co-facilitator Peter Röjhammar usually meet a lot of managers that stay mainly in their heads, not using their emotional skills to a larger extent. And for this group it would have been understandable if they did – language barriers, new people, new country, new food etc, you got to keep your guard up a bit. But we really wanted them to experience how using your emotional skills can help opening up and start collaborating on a deeper level, co-creating psychological safety, enhancing learning and so on. So we encouraged our participants to take a silent break for 30 minutes. No talking, no interaction with other people, phones, computers, music, books, anything but walking in the beautiful nature surrounding Högbo Bruk.

And yes! This, at first sight, small change added so much more value than we could have ever expected. For many of our participants silence and reflection is a scarce resource. For some silence only occurs when using noice cancelling headphones, or maybe at night when parts of the city sleeps. And reflection then – very occasionally and almost never as a planned activity.

So – what did we learn? Of course the obvious – that learning design needs to follow the needs, attitudes and behaviours of the participants, and that reflection can come in different shapes; talking, writing or just being with yourself for a little while, observing your feelings, observing the surrounding. The most important though may be that we as facilitators underestimated the power of time spent on reflection. We thought they would be tired of reflecting after these three days, however it seems like the opposite where reflection together in teams, with your learning buddy or for yourself have given new energy and tons of new insights about how to deal with all different dilemmas in the daily business.

And for me and Peter – we are just even more humble and grateful for experiencing people connecting with themselves and with others for a more positive and sustainable future. Thank you Alleima leaders for this – you know who you are 💫🙏

Kristina Vallin

Dela inlägget

Leadership - both the problem and the solution

Leadership - both the problem and the solution

The Doers

Leadership - both the problem and the solution

The Doers

If you’re interested in leadership, Gallup’s annual global engagement survey is eagerly awaited. This year, it dropped in June. Congratulations to humanity! Engagement, which has long been unbelievably low, is now at an all-time high at 23%. But let’s not pop the champagne just yet. It’s still way too low, of course. Engagement is not just a nice bonus and a delightful feeling of satisfaction at work; it is also a crucial factor in the organization’s success. According to Gallup, low engagement costs the global economy an unreasonable $8.8 trillion or 9% of global GDP. Unfortunately, another thing that has increased in this year’s report is stress. The numbers show a perceived daily stress level of 44% globally, a steady increase over the past ten years. Gallup argues that both the problem and the solution spell leadership.

The Relationship Between Engagement and Stress

The increased stress is, of course, due to several factors, but one of the clearest is finding the right leadership. This is especially important for support in navigating uncertainty and strengthening engagement. A high level of engagement, in turn, acts as a buffer against stress; Gallup’s analysis shows that engagement has 3.8 times the impact on employees’ stress levels as their physical workplace.

Winds of Change

If not before, it became crystal clear during the pandemic that it’s no longer possible to lead based on old standards with a micromanaging approach. The new world order made it especially clear that it’s time for new leadership. Leadership that looks at results and value creation rather than presence and hours. Leadership with the ability to truly listen, communicate, and motivate, regardless of what the physical workplace looks like.

The Solution: New Leadership

The change starts with leadership, and it must happen now. Research is clear: inadequate leadership leads to poorer collective performance. But it’s equally clear that the right kind of leadership can work wonders. Not only making the company more successful but also reducing stress and making life more meaningful for employees.

But it’s not the leaders’ fault that they’re not good enough. The demands on leaders today are enormous. That’s why we’ve spent a lot of time on leadership development in recent years. It ranges from exploring how we ourselves, with our challenges, in our environment, want to lead and live. To navigating, evolving, and persevering when we don’t know what awaits around the corner. To finding the most value-creating and tailored training programs for our clients that work on factory floors as well as in hybrid setups with employees and leaders scattered around the world.

There is incredibly valuable research on what we need to feel good and perform at work. At Doings, we understand leadership in complex environments. And we love tricky challenges – put us to the test!

The Doers

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