33% is unsatisfied

(Source: Ruysdael research on connected leadership)

We recognize and acknowledge each other’s emotions

Our perception and interpretation of information is pre-framed by emotions and non-verbal behavior. In an instance, most people pick up and adapt to the emotions of others without even being aware of it.  Improving the quality of communication, by acknowledging the emotional state of others, is crucial to the group effort. This strengthens interpersonal relationships and group cohesion.


Interpersonal communication is the most important success factor for any group of people. When the quality is high it creates a common and practical frame of reference for the task at hand. When the quality is poor the chance of rework and frustration increases.

The success strategy: Be fit and tune in. We connect to each other and include mutual thoughts and feelings into new information and meaning. We can discuss this factor using the following success markers:

  • Openness
  • Empathy
  • Mutual understanding
  • Practical translation
  • Shared meaning


Individual improvement

  • Make sure that you are fit and centered. It is easier to recognize the emotions of others in a balanced emotional state.
  • Start every conversation with an open mindset balancing attention for I, You and We.
  • Connect to others the way you would connect to people that are close to you. At the same time maintain a safe environment for yourself.
  • Increase the level of eye contact (depending on culture).
  • Adjust your attention from the content (what is said) to the form (how the other communicates with you).

How do we improve?

  • Make sure all team member are ‘ready’ for a meeting
  • Focus on the bigger picture (‘we’ and ‘it’)
  • Slow down team communication when team members have trouble expressing themselves
  • Acknowledge the group state (emotions)
  • Acknowledge individual emotins, but do not get stuck in it

Other interventions

  • Reframe emotions into ‘intent’ and ‘expectations’
  • How does it feel for you when others empathise with you and acknowledge your emotions?