Would you enjoy being stuck in an airport with Kim Christfort, National Managing Director of the Deloitte Greenhouse Experience? If after chatting with her–or anyone else–for half an hour you don’t think so, there’s a good chance you wouldn’t choose them to be on your team. This screening technique is commonly known as the airport test, and the basic assumption behind it may be flawed. Kim has another suggestion. Find out more in this LinkedIn article. (And, don’t be shy–share it with others!)
Want to share your thoughts with our authors about their new book, “Business Chemistry: Practical Magic for Crafting Powerful Work Relationships?” Here’s your complete guide on keeping up with Kim Christfort, The Deloitte Greenhouse Experience US Leader; and Suzanne Vickberg, lead researcher for Business Chemistry. Don’t be shy!
Ever wonder what it is that makes two people click or clash? Or why some groups excel while others fumble? Or how you, as a leader, can make or break team potential? Business Chemistry has the answers.
In their new book, Practical Magic for Crafting Powerful Work Relationships, authors Kim Christfort and Suzanne Vickberg share the lessons they’ve learned—and the stories they’ve collected—through years of practical, hands-on experience and research. They explore team building, cognitive diversity, and the ways in which creating a positive, inclusive office environment can empower people to do their very best work and reach their full potential.
Leading in business today often means moving at a brisk pace, embracing a significant level of risk, and making decisions quickly. It can also require a certain level of adaptability and agility to navigate in uncertain times. Which behavioral types thrive in this kind of environment, and how can CIOs work with other types in the C-suite to drive success for their organizations? Read the article in the Wall Street Journal’s CIO Corner.
As summer comes to a close and families prepare for back-to-school, making work and life balance—while juggling job expectations and career aspirations, helping with homework or school projects, and attending extracurricular activities—can be a challenge. The growing role of technology in our daily lives can add to this struggle, as expectations for employees to always be connected can further blur the lines between work time and personal time.
In a new article published in HR People and Strategy, “5 Simple Ways to Help Your Team (and Self) Achieve Better Work-Life Balance,” Kim Christfort, national managing director of the Deloitte Greenhouse Experience, says that many business leaders and workers fail to understand that 24-hour connectivity isn’t the best thing for well-being or productivity. Studies show that overworking employees can lead to decreased productivity, and even health issues.
Christfort provides five tips to carve out time for yourself and your family despite a demanding schedule, which may help those Business Chemistry types more prone to experience stress.
Are leaders born or made? In this week’s new episode of our Confessions podcast, “Inspired Leadership,” our guest, Steve Schloss, Chief People Officer at the United States Golf Association (USGA), says the answer is… both.
Tune in to hear Steve’s perspective on the qualities that make an effective leader, and the four core leadership disciplines— conscious leadership, connected leadership, informed leadership, and influential leadership—that he believes executives need to master in order to be truly successful.
Business Chemistry’s lead researcher, Suzanne Vicksburg and the Deloitte Greenhouse™ Experience national leader, Kim Christfort will join the conversation to provide their own insights and opinions.
Be sure to keep your ears open for more stories and thoughts from today’s leaders in our next episode, and check out Deloitte’s award-winning Resilience podcast and M&A’s Trends podcast series. Find both on Deloitte.com, Stitcher, or Apple’s podcast app
Download Confessions Episode No. 8: “Flexing for Success” with USGA’s Chief People Officer Steve Schloss
Effective leaders are big, bold, outspoken individuals who inspire confidence and loyalty through the sheer force of their dynamic personalities. Or, are they?
In this week’s episode of Confessions, we talk with Steven Schloss, Chief People Officer of the United States Golf Association, who says that while extroverts may come across as the more obvious leaders, their more reserved colleagues shouldn’t be overlooked.
“I’ve often said to people that if you want applause, you can talk all you want, but if you want results, you have to listen,” said Schloss.
Listen to this week’s episode, “Flexing for Success,” to hear his view on the value of introspection.
In our previous podcast episode of Confessions, we discussed the importance of smart risk taking with Mark Buthman, CFO Emeritus at Kimberly-Clark Corporation. In that discussion, Mark revealed an interesting fact about himself—he doesn’t possess the normally dominant Business Chemistry® traits of a CFO.
Whereas most CFOs identify as Drivers or Guardians—driven and/or analytical personality types—Mark is an Integrator and team builder. It’s a trait that would help him recognize the value of cognitive diversity within teams.
“One of the risks in finance, and [on] any leadership team—there’s a lot of analytical, decisive leaders around, but that doesn’t make for such diversity,” Buthman said.
Confessions Podcast Episode 6: There are times when a business team and their leader don’t see eye-to-eye. In this episode of Business Chemistry’s® Confessions podcast, we hear how one very successful CFO encouraged his team to step out of their comfort zones and take more calculated risks to find success.
“Smart Risk Taking” features Mark Buthman, CFO Emeritus at Kimberly-Clark Corporation, who was a square peg in a round hole; someone, who believed in the importance of risk taking while leading a risk-averse group of finance professionals. Buthman tells us why he believes taking risks is important to achieving both personal and professional growth, and how he instilled this belief in his team.
What if you could be the kind of leader whose team had increased energy, was more productive, collaborated better with their colleagues, and stayed with your organization longer? What if your people suffered less chronic stress and were happier with their lives?
In the Neuroscience of Trust, published in a recent issue of Harvard Business Review, Paul Zak suggests that you can be that kind of leader by increasing trust on your team. He proposes eight management behaviors to help you do so. In considering his ideas, I matched his suggestions up against the Business Chemistry types, knowing that different things make the various types tick. Here are the eight proposed behaviors and the types with which they’re most likely to be effective…
Induce “challenge” stress. Zak suggests that challenge stress, brought on by assigning teams difficult but achievable tasks, releases chemicals in our brains that increase social connections. This technique may be particularly effective for Drivers, who are more likely than the other types to report that they thrive in the face of challenging tasks. 1
Give people discretion in how they do their work. In other words, enable autonomy by allowing people to complete projects in their own way—if you trust your people, they’re more likely to trust you. When asked about autonomy, Pioneers and Drivers (particularly D-Scientists) say it’s more important to them than Integrators and Guardians do.
Enable job crafting. Job crafting means, in part, empowering people to choose which projects they work on. This technique may be particularly successful with Pioneers, who are the most likely type to say they thrive when they have opportunities to learn and try new things. Who knows better which work has the right level of “new” than your people themselves?
Share information widely. Zak suggests that lack of information about an organization’s direction can cause chronic stress among employees. Cultivating trust by sharing such information may be most essential with Guardians, who our research suggests experience the highest levels of stress, and are also the type most likely to say clear expectations are important to them.
Recognize excellence. A little recognition is likely to go long a long way for all types of people, but our research shows that Guardians and Integrators are more likely than Pioneers and Drivers to say that recognition is a key ingredient for them to thrive at work. Given that the work of these types can sometimes go unseen, acknowledging their contributions could be a particularly effective trust-builder with them.
Intentionally build relationships. Zak cites his own research suggesting that creating social ties at work improves performance. This may be particularly valuable with Integrators, who are the most relationship-focused type and also the most likely to say that working with people they enjoy is a priority for them. A little bit of focused attention to relationship-building can help in creating mutual trust.
Facilitate whole person growth. By whole-person growth Zak means helping people grow both professionally and personally, and that can mean different things for different people. While all the types put a high priority on a feeling of accomplishment, Drivers, particularly D-Commanders, are more likely than the other types to say advancement is important to them, while Guardians and Integrators prioritize work-life balance more than others, and Pioneers are the most likely type to say it’s important to know they’re making a difference in the world. When your people know you understand them and see them as people, not just employees, they’re more likely to put their trust in you.
Show vulnerability: As a leader, being vulnerable enough to ask for help when you need it is perhaps one of the scariest but most effective means of role-modeling trust. Doing so demonstrates to all types of people that asking for help is okay, that they can trust you enough to ask when they need it. By asking your people to have your back, you’ll show them that you’re going to have theirs. And isn’t that really what trust is all about?
Dr. Suz is the Greenhouse Team’s very own social-personality psychologist, which means she studies how people’s thoughts, behaviors and preferences are influenced by both who they are and the situations they’re in. She uses Business Chemistry to help teams explore how the mix of perspectives brought by their individual members influences their work together. Follow her on Twitter @DrSuzBizChem
1Research findings in this post are based on a study with 13,885 professionals of varying levels working outside Deloitte, in the US and elsewhere. Participants represent more than 1,200 organizations across various industries, and 115 countries overall. During the period of February, 2016 to November, 2016 participants completed the Business Chemistry assessment online and also answered questions about their career aspirations, career priorities, and the working conditions under which they thrive. For each question, respondents were asked to select their top three options out of a list of 10. The margin error for this sample is less than two percentage points at a 95 percent confidence level, for all Business Chemistry types.