What’s the link between motivation and leading through change? How does coaching influence leaders and their capacity to be motivated and motivate others?

Unfortunately, we’ve all experienced organizational change efforts managed poorly. What are the essential tools for leaders to do it well? Executive neuro-leadership coaches from the UBalancer network share insights from the field.

EQ for a Change

How Coaching Leaders Fuel Motivation & Transformation

Quick Tips

Keep people informed so they feel as safe as possible.

Give people choice – help people see the choices they have.

Challenge people to engage in the vision.

Check in. Monitor progress and grow self-awareness.

Focus on trust by staying connected to values and people.


Thanks to the coaches at UBalancer, Six Seconds’ Preferred Partner, for insights on leadership, motivation, and change. Insights from the dialogue include…

Motivation through change requires awareness, especially as stress rises. People become more reactive, and start feeling powerless – that they have no choice. Awareness fuels optimism which fuels energy.

Talking about feelings with trusted allies is a key tool for stepping out of the cycle of reaction and building helpful solutions to navigate. The skills of emotional intelligence are invaluable in this process.

Effective change leaders set the bar high, and build one-to-one connections to support people to achieve this challenge. This is a process of “leader as coach” constantly supporting people to develop. In this vision of leadership, the goal is growth, and the challenge of change is an opportunity to practice and grow together.

If you have a high trust environment, you have a low transaction cost. It means you’re more efficient in getting things done, solving problems, communicating. Trust creates the context for people to build their own motivation from the inside — so in the complex challenge of change, trust is the essential foundation.

Change triggers reactivity. People feel threatened, they move into a more volatile “amygdala driven” state. To overcome that, you need strong relationships where people feel trust. Living into our values as leaders is key to building that kind of trust.

Leading a safe, connected team is a relational process. welcoming people to a team, including people, is a great start, but it’s not enough. Effective change leaders go “beneath the waterline” on the iceberg to engage deeper motivation. It’s not just behaviors. Powerful change leaders show appreciation, connect, truly listen… the result is a feeling of community and connection, which in turn, creates the feelings that fuel both motivation and transformation.

In a world with so much “craziness” of polarization, rapid change, complexity, people need to become more adaptable. Emotional intelligence is key to this. EQ helps leaders be a role model of that change. Connect with purpose. Act locally to rebuild trust with people we see daily. Emotional intelligence is a learnable skill that all of us need — and especially leaders who are going to bring people through complexity.

Thank you to the expert coaches who joined this discussion: Alison Lalieu, Karen Muggleton, Maureen Owen, Geoff Lang, and Judy Williams

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