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The Hope Horseshoe

Submitted by on Tuesday, 10 December 2013One Comment

Whether you need to deliver customer experiences, or to cultivate great relationships at work, here is a concept we have adapted from the research undertaken by Dr Richard Boyatzis into Emotional Intelligence (EI).

From his research, managing emotions – especially the emotions of others, is usually not a one stage process.

Instead, there are at least two phases which are illustrated in the graphic below. Have a look…

The Hope Horseshoe

One of the key goals of healthy emotional relationships identified by Boyatzis is the ability to inspire hope in others. In neuroscience, this activates the parts of the brain that opens up our body, heart, and breathing, and activates the Positive Emotional Attractor (or PEA), instead of the Negative Emotional Attractor (or NEA) – the latter of which causes stress.

Now, activation of negative energy and the NEA is almost inevitable in business. There are numerous hot buttons that can ‘set us off’, and, if not, we might also walk into a customer experience in a miserable state of mind from a prior negative experience.

So it helps to understand that, in any customer experience, we are not trying to create a magical state of ‘happiness’. Instead, we are simply trying to move the customer (or client) along the continuum below, from left to right.

 Hope HorseshoeHow to use the Hope Horseshoe

Let’s say that a customer is at -5 (red zone) in the illustration above. Do you try to get him or her across to +5 (in the green zone)?

Not according to Boyatzis. From the research, it is more effective to ‘dial down’ the intensity to the less intense (grey zone), before then trying to move the customer back up the low numbers in the green zone.

If you have enough time (and are given a chance) you can then gradually work at achieving your desired +5 score.

We’ll be following up this post with more details about how you can do so – either in a Customer Experience situation or a situation with a friend or colleague.

Next step? Have a look at Customer Experience Maximisation

We’ll be looking at these factors again in more detail, so make sure to stay tuned by subscribing below.

Meanwhile, if you are interested in getting your work team or company into the ‘green zone’ above, have a look at our Customer Experience Maximisation programme which helps you create outstanding customer experiences.

With an exciting mix of video clips, hands-on activities and role plays this really boosts capability in this critical area. For more details, simply follow the link below…


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