On the Power of Feelings

In his Inc. blog post, This Email From Elon Musk to Tesla Employees Is a Master Class in Emotional Intelligence, Justin Bariso shares a magnificent picture of a role model act of emotional intelligence, words and actions by Elon Musk. The issue and concern he addressed was about injury rates at one of Tesla’s plants. As reported by news site Electrek, he sent the following email to his employees.

No words can express how much I care about your safety and well-being. It breaks my heart when someone is injured building cars and trying their best to make Tesla successful.

Going forward, I’ve asked that every injury be reported directly to me, without exception. I’m meeting with the safety team every week and would like to meet every injured person as soon as they are well so that I can understand from them exactly what we need to do to make it better. I will then go down to the production line and perform the same task that they perform.

This is what all managers at Tesla should do as a matter of course. At Tesla, we lead from the front line, not from some safe and comfortable ivory tower. Managers must always put their team’s safety about their own.

Musk’s message is powerful – one of deep caring, concern, a personal connection with them and a commitment to action. He is in the trenches with them; he has their back. He is willing to listen and stand in their shoes.  The impact of his behaviors, attitudes and actions is one of respect, feeling valued and cared for. That’s all that great leaders and we all ask. Daniel Goleman writes: “What really matters for success, character, happiness and life-long achievements is a definite set of emotional skills – your EQ — not just purely cognitive abilities that are measured by conventional IQ tests.”  Let people feel your concern and caring. Hear and understand their concerns through their eyes. Be there for them. As Lucius Seneca tells us: “Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness.” It is a simple choice, one that can change someone’s life forever.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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2 Responses to On the Power of Feelings

  1. dzanzalari says:

    Great words to go by. I like that Musk is willing to perform the same task and meet with employees to make instant change.

  2. Jack Beach says:

    “Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness.” What a profound insight. Most often leaders are evaluated by the degree to which they create organizational climates which foster creativity and performance, what if every leader (and parent) focused on nurturing kindness? Kindness is something anyone and everyone can achieve and just imagine what an organization, community, and world would be like if everyone did. Thanks Mike

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