The spirit of work

by Elise Stevens | Futureproof Your Career Podcast

Stress, anxiety and uncertainty have a huge impact on our behaviour at work and contribute to the entire work culture within our organisations.

But when we think about how we can bring our spirit to work, how we can contribute to our community and act with kindness, we’re more likely to do so and be less triggered by stressors in our day.

In this podcast, Elise Stevens speaks with leadership coach Marie Gervais about how we can create a world of work that is very different to the one we know today..

Marie teaches managers how to be effective leaders and create holistic, healthy workplaces.

Points raised in this podcast:

    • Stress, anxiety and uncertainty affects all of us at work to some degree.
    • Being mindful about how we can bring a spirit of kindness and community to work – how we can make the culture healthier – means we are more likely to actually do so, rather than react to what is triggering us in the moment.
    • Across every culture and every tradition, kindness is a spiritual principle that guides our behaviour, and keeps communities balanced.
    • In a toxic environment, the opportunity for growth can be as simple as setting boundaries so others don’t get away with abusing you.
    • We have not even discovered the best version of ourselves yet. Trying to build something positive for others can being out latent qualities we don’t know we have.
    • Sharing good qualities will bring out those qualities in others.
    • Our innate negativity bias, which is essential to our survival, can make it hard to focus on the positive. But expanding our emotion, virtue and descriptive vocabularies can help. When you can name something, it becomes subservient to you instead of controlling you.
    • Bringing your emotions to work does not mean bringing dysregulated emotion. It means having words for your emotions and being aware of their impact on others.
    • If you are in a workplace with no allies and things are not moving forward, consider if you should stay there. Companies with issues retaining staff need to rethink their culture.

About Marie:

Dr. Marie Gervais is the author of “The Spirit of Work: Timeless Wisdom, Current Realities”. She holds a PhD in Culture and Learning in the Workplace. Through her work in leadership training, she has coached more than 500 supervisors, managers and business owners for career and business success. 

She hosts the Culture and Leadership Connections podcast, which features interviews with diverse leaders in a variety of professions. Her publications span industry and academic journals on topics including the future of work, workplace communication, productivity and psychological safety in the workplace. Her online courses and products are used by managers and career developers around the world.

Also, a musician, creative writer and visual artist, Dr. Gervais lives in Edmonton, Alberta with her husband Roger Gervais, a psychologist specialized in workplace testing. They have four talented children with equally talented spouses from diverse backgrounds, and five beautiful grandsons.

You can buy Marie’s book here or connect with her on LinkedIn.