Cy Wakeman: Ditching Drama At Work Through Great Leadership, Episode 13

Drama at work is one of the most deflating and demoralizing things most of us deal with in our careers. Hurtful words and implications combined with outright misunderstandings are enough to scar anyone if we let them. My guest on this episode, Cy Wakeman is an expert at destroying drama in the workplace and she has learned to do so by teaching leaders to empower their teams to practice self-reflection and improve their own mental processes. This conversation is far-ranging and very insightful so make sure you take the time to listen.

Good leadership is about eliminating emotional waste (drama) from the workplace through good mental processes

I love to discover how my guests define the idea of leadership and every one of them has a slightly different take on it. But my guest on this episode, Cy Wakeman has an entirely different definition than most people. She says that good leadership is about eliminating emotional waste, which is what she calls drama, through good mental processes. That means leaders have the job of teaching their teams how to think about situations in an objective, nonassuming way that empowers everyone on the team to deal with reality rather than making up stories about it based on what they feel or presume. This episode is sure to give you the insights you need to improve your leadership and create a healthier environment for your team.

The average person spends 2 ½ hours per day engaged in drama at their workplace. There’s no greater potential for ROI on leadership

It’s hard to believe but modern research demonstrates that the average person spends two and a half hours per day engaged in some kind of drama at the workplace. That is a tremendous loss of creative and intellectual energy – energy that leaders are on the hook to redeem. There is no greater potential for return on investment when it comes to leadership. Cy Wakeman has become a drama researcher almost by accident, learning what it takes to dispel drama in the workplace and put teams on a more productive and collaborative footing. Every leader needs to hear what she has to share about this important topic.

Leaders need to stop encouraging venting and start encouraging greatness through questions aimed at self-reflection

As Cy Wakeman and I talked about the issue of drama in the workplace she pointed out that company spending for learning and training has increased while the level of actual engagement between employees has decreased. She concludes that what we are teaching our teams and leaders is not working, in fact, it’s making the problem of drama at work even worse. She says that leaders need to stop encouraging their employees to vent, which only amplifies their already skewed perspectives, and start encouraging them to aim for greatness through doing the self-reflection required to come to interactions ready to hear and speak the truth. You don’t want to miss the insights that Cy has to share with us on this episode.

Drama and suffering happen because of the story we tell ourselves about reality, not because of reality itself

There is a great deal of suffering in the world, but only a small portion of it is outside our control. That is what my guest, Cy Wakeman would say because she believes that most suffering and pain comes from our interpretation of reality, from the story we tell ourselves, rather than from the facts of reality itself. She believes if we can establish good mental processes that enable us to see reality as it is and stop making up stories about it, we will find that our suffering and pain decrease proportionally. I invite you to learn more about ditching drama at work from my expert on this episode, Cy Wakeman.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:48] Who is Cy Wakeman and how does she help people ditch the drama and turn excuses into results?
  • [1:43] Cy’s definition of leadership: Eliminating emotional waste from the workplace with good mental processes
  • [2:34] The research and insights that prompted Cy to write her newest book
  • [4:30] Examples of how drama shows up in the workplace and how leaders can ditch it to get to better results
  • [9:09] How drama plays out in the 21st century team context and how leaders can address it
  • [12:59] It’s more important than ever that each team member come to relationships with few assumptions and conclusions
  • [17:09] Modern leadership is teaching people to engage in drama instead of how to avoid it
  • [19:21] Cy’s tips for those who want to become a Masters of Leadership

Resources & People Mentioned

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