Whether we like it or not, as human beings we’re emotional creatures. Even when things are going right, when you hit the commercial target, win the pitch or successfully attract a rising star to the team, it can be an emotional rollercoaster. But your calm exterior can sometimes hide the real truth; the nagging doubts of ‘can I really handle it?’ syndrome, the fear of letting others and yourself down.
It can be lonely at the top, but these feelings aren’t reserved for high-flying CEOs or leaders of stature. Where there is responsibility there is pressure, and where there is talent, inevitably comes responsibility. It all creates a highly charged melting pot of emotions that we often don’t even realise we have. As a leader, how you act under pressure is detrimental to the whole team’s performance.
Emotions form a critical part of our daily lives. They are intrinsic to our relationships, our behaviour and how we’re perceived by others. Historically, society has dictated that showing emotion is inherently a sign of weakness – especially as it flies in the face of the notion of the ‘alpha male’. Studies and experience show, however, that emotional honesty is a strength. Alex Ferguson has stated that it is good to sometimes lose your temper, but it is important to understand how far you can go before causing lasting damage.