User story:

Elmarie le Roux
Nedbank - Organisational Design Manager
When a leader AND their team develop EQ at the same time, you start to see magic happening.
Beyond Metrics / User Stories / Elmarie le Roux

Mygrow is the best thing that has ever happened to my team. I recommend it all the time to other team leaders at Nedbank.

My team have worked together for 6 years, so one would think they would have pretty strong relationships by now. But the culture has been quite psychologically unsafe. There are factions. I noticed that there was an interesting dynamic where some of them had no idea of reality. The best performing team members felt insecure. And the reverse was true as well. The difficult ones thought they were perfect. It was very interesting to see. 

As the team leader, in my one-on-one meetings I would hear the tattle tales – how they complained about this team member or that one. But none of them would say it to each other. There was a mask over the team culture. (They even lied on each other’s performance review forms! Reviewing each other favourably when their names were on the form. But then when I chatted to them later they told me how they really felt. I must admit I had very little patience for that nonsense.) 

So that’s the team. But what about me? Well, just over a year ago I was the victim of an armed robbery in my home. The experience was so traumatic that I have suffered a lot from PTSD since then. So, because I have had a lot going on personally the result has meant that I have had even less patience to deal with my team. 

Then we started Mygrow together.

“I have been on many different EQ courses, but Mygrow is different. And when I say different I mean ‘much better.’  It is practical and actually changes you.”

I had a rough time with it. I’ll be honest. The journey of growing emotional resilience meant I had to deal with the trauma from my house break-in. The ABCDE technique in particular was incredibly helpful, by learning how to logically dispute some of the triggers that set me off. (By the way, I went to therapy for 9 weeks to deal with the aftermath of that attack, but Mygrow accomplished more for me in one module, through one technique, than my therapist could help me with.) 

So how has my growth impacted the team? Well, now I have more time and patience to deal with their nonsense. But the beauty about Mygrow is that it is not just a leadership programme where I grow and the team benefits. The team itself has been on the journey with me. They have each grown too. And that has made all the difference. When a leader AND their team develop EQ at the same time, you start to see magic happening. It’s not just that I had more capacity to deal with their rubbish, they stopped acting that way!

Every team member has grown. 

One lady was so sensitive she would cry whenever anyone raised their voice. She now has more ability to work effectively WITH her emotions, instead of letting them overwhelm her. There is another team member who, historically, hasn’t performed very well, but believed she was perfect. (Or at least that’s the mask she put up.) Now she will admit when she is struggling and will ask for help. The team that had never gelled properly before has become more united and works better as a team. Instead of factions, now my team members are willing to jump in and help each other. They are also more willing to share honestly with each other. (We recently had a session where we all shared what the Mygrow journey had been like for us all. Quite apart from the details of the growth they shared, even just the fact that they shared vulnerably is astounding! This would have never happened a year ago.) I have also noticed a marked difference in how they deal with our customers. Now they are much more empathetic and seem to be a lot better at “putting themselves in their customer’s shoes.”

So I’ll end this with the words I used at the beginning. Mygrow is the best thing that ever happened to my team.


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