Startup Digest

Leadership & Resiliency

January 06, 2017

Hello! Happy New Year!

If you are anything like the cross-section of my clients, you are somewhere between eager for a fresh start and still exhausted from all that 2016 threw your way. If your bones ache, please do everyone a favor and prioritize rest. This will allow your nervous system to settle down (therefore getting you out of fight-or-flight) and blood to flood into your creative brain again. Innovation is where the real fun is.  

For this week's digest I have put together a collection of tools for aligning your communication strategies with research on effective teams. I hope you enjoy!

Leadership & Resiliency Startup Digest is curated by:
Miriam Meima

Miriam Meima

Contact Miriam Meima at

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Use Nonviolent Communication to Connect with Colleagues

Hannah du Plessis - Together London

This 27 minute video provides an overview of NVC (nonviolent communication), a communication technique commonly used to train new managers.

Crucial Conversations

Kerry Patterson et. al. - Book

This is a must-read if you find yourself holding back from sharing essential information or if someone in your organization has a habit of blowing up (no, you are not alone).  

How Emotionally Intelligent Bosses Resolve Conflicts

Lee Price - Fast Company

If you are like most leaders, you are likely wondering about how to cut conflict out of your worklife. This article offers a few suggestions to keep in mind.  

To give you a sense of the heart of this article...
"“The fact that people disagree isn’t a bad thing,” says Amy Gallo, author of the HBR Guide to Managing Conflict at Work. “It’s how we manage conflict that can be damaging to productivity. ”However, not every little squabble requires you to get involved. For everyday friction that occurs at work, give people space to disagree and work things out. But when a disagreement becomes personal, or when it’s affecting the work, then it’s time for you to intervene."

The Ideal Praise-to-Criticism Ratio

Jack Zenger and Joseph Folkman - HBR / The Gottman Institute

John Gottman is best known for his research on relationships. While he originally focused on married couples, much of his findings has become widely applied to professional team dynamics. For example, one aspect of his research has been in the area of appreciation-to-criticism ratios. 5-to-1 is the most highly published ratio that highly effective teams (and partnerships) exhibit. In other words, in "healthy" relationships, for every criticism there are 5 points of positive feedback. This does not mean that you need to pat everyone on the head. It does offer a suggestion that in 360 degree feedback as well as throughout your 1:1s, you can offer points of acknowledgement and affirmation and sprinkle in critique.

The Role of Positivity and Connectivity in the Performance of Business Teams

Marcial Losada and Emily Heaphy - University of Michigan Business School

This is the white paper produced in 2004 that is referenced in the HBR article listed above. For anyone wanting to nerd out there are is a wealth of interesting data here.

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