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Get emotional in your business or die a digital death

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This post is by Anton Buchner, a senior consultant with TrinityP3. Anton is a lateral and innovative thinker with a passion for refocusing business teams and strategies; creating visionary, data driven communication plans; and making sense of a more complex digital marketing environment.

This post is for aggressive people with attitude problems and poor work ethics. People who are being trouble-makers and political point scorers. As well as for people with empathy and a genuine good nature who feel that they are being down trodden at their workplace.

The 90s – an era where brand advertising and image ruled

I felt like the poor country cousin in the 90s doing direct marketing. Yet I was a mathematics guy with a heart and a mind who always wanted to know how marketing communications actually performed. I hoped that one day that it would be valued and become a little cool.

The 90s was an era where brand advertising and image ruled. The long lunch occurred every Friday, and marketing funds were splashed around on TV commercial locations, talent, props, post production, and almost anything else you could imagine.

However, the world of marketing and advertising has changed dramatically with a wave of digital technology revolutions:

  • Gary Thuerk, a Marketing Manager at Digital Equipment Corp, launched commercial email by sending the first mass emailing in 1978.
  • The first smartphone – called Simon, remember him? – was released to the public by IBM in 1993.
  • The world wide web was launched publicly in 1993 after Tim Berners-Lee worked out how to weave hypertext to the Internet (a global system of interconnected computer networks).  As a quick aside, the world wide web (or web) is often mistaken for the Internet. The web is just one of the services that runs on the Internet. It is a collection of text documents and other resources, linked by hyperlinks and URLs, that allows you to access information over the Internet
  • Portable computers such as laptops started appearing in the late 80s & 90s
  • Blogging began in 1997
  • Social networks started springing up from 1994 with Geocities, however really exploded from 2002 with Friendster, then MySpace in 2003, Facebook & Bebo in 2005, Twitter in 2006, Google+ in 2011 and many others in between.
  • However it wasn’t until Apple launched the first iPhone in 2007 that we all got excited about touching, swiping, apps and staring down at these incredibly time consuming little mobile phone devices. And according to Nielsen we use on average 26.8 apps per month for approx. 30 hours, 15 minutes in total.

The bottom line is that everything is now measurable. Brand and advertising leaders are now talking ROI and engagement metrics. And as a result, businesses are drowning in massive amounts of data.

In fact Facebook itself apparently runs almost 200,000 servers to manage its 1.2b users. Not quite in the league of Microsoft and Google who both have over 1,000,000 servers each.

And the total stored data by all global businesses is over 2.2 Zettabytes (ZB), and predicted to be around 7 ZB by 2017, and 40 ZB by 2020.

Total stored data

Bring on the Yottabyte (1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 Bytes), Xenottabyte (1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 Bytes), Shilentnobyte (1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 Bytes) and Domegemegrottebyte (1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 Bytes) I say!

This all sounds pretty unemotional doesn’t it?

So I’d like to put it out there that digital is killing our innate human emotion.

And for marketers, this means that we are losing the art of really understanding people (both internally within a business and externally with customers).

Whilst it’s cool to be able to measure, it’s cooler to connect with people on an emotional level.

Now, as a male, I can safely say that women in business typically get this more than men.

However it’s time for all employee dynamics to dramatically improve.

Time to add EQ to your IQ

IQ - EQ

Whether you’re a junior, mid level or senior manager, male or female, shy or outgoing, it’s time to understand your Emotional Quotient (measuring your emotional intelligence) just as you probably know your Intelligence Quotient (IQ).

The EQ measures the ability to sense, understand and apply the power of emotions to facilitate high levels of collaboration and productivity. In business, EQ is critical in creating effectiveness in the workplace.

Without it, businesses are susceptible to infighting, ego, division, and ultimately inefficiency and productivity loss.

By understanding your EQ you not only have self- awareness and self- control in difficult situations and with difficult co-workers, but you also offer empathy, understanding and invaluable relationship building skills. Now that’s the real social network!

In such a fast paced digital environment and the increasing complexity of data, technology and systems, business leaders must tap into their emotional side in order to succeed.

Here’s a list of questions to ponder and answer for yourself:

1. Are you listening to others or talking at others?

2. Are you talking over others in meetings or allowing people to complete their point?

3. Are you acknowledging points made by co-workers and building on their ideas, or dismissing discussion and diverting with different points?

4. Are you using your mobile phone when others are talking, or are you 100% present?

5. Are you writing notes on your computer in meetings, or are you secretly answering emails?

6. Are you trying to sound intellectual yet failing to make people understand your point?

7. Are you taking people on a clear journey of discovery, or a disjointed dead-end path?

8. Are you taking the time to discover how people are feeling before you interact?

9. Are you patient or too busy and rushed?

10. Do you look for ways to improve yourself or do you think you are always right?

11. Are you constructive or destructive with your peers?

Hopefully you’re getting the picture?

At TrinityP3 we spend a lot of time with clients and agencies helping evaluate and build stronger relationships. We facilitate relationship alignment and performance improvement through a process called Evalu8ing.

Impact matrix

And EQ is a critical foundation stone for impacting successfully.

So here are 11 tips on how to improve your EQ:

1. Don’t impulsively continue on with what seems to benefit you without assessing the impact on others

2. Compliment others and recognize their achievements throughout projects

3. Share in the delight of small successes and milestones

4. Offer constructive feedback and build on people’s strengths (which means you first need to discover people’s strengths and not simply presume or prejudge)

5. Ask people for feedback on your performance, attitude and approach to business (you may be a little amazed how others view you)

6. Find ways to help and encourage others to bring out their best

7. Discover what may be frustrating people and ask if they need help

8. Look for the good in discussion and don’t be quick to shoot down ideas

9. Seek to understand what triggers stress and how you can manage it professionally

10. Be curious, open-minded and provocative without being destructive

11. Be positive, as negativity focuses on what can go wrong rather than what could be right for your business

If you’re an aggressive person with an attitude problem and poor work ethic, then thank you for reading this far. If you’re a trouble-maker and political point scorer, then change can only start from within. Only you can start the road to redemption.

Hopefully you can stop and think about your actions for a few moments and be intelligent enough to assess what is right or wrong.

If you’re someone with empathy and a genuine good nature, then it’s your time to shine. Just as the direct marketers rose to prominence, so too can you with your high EQ and ability to create real change within your business.

Productabyte?

Lets start an emotional groundswell and measure the productivity improvements.

Lets call it Productabyte, which could well be 1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 times more powerful than heartless, robot-like performances all too common in the workplace now that we’re hooked on digital.

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Anton is one of Australian's leading customer engagement consultants. With an eye for discovering greater marketing value and a love for listening to what customers are really saying about a brand. Anton has helped take global and local businesses including Microsoft, Nestlé, P&G, Gloria Jean's, Foxtel and American Express amongst others to the next level. Check out Anton's full bio here

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