There are many elements that contribute to employee wellness. Even when we break the concept down to mental, emotional and physical health, there is still a lot to unpack, which can feel overwhelming for businesses who are trying to positively impact employee experiences.
As organizations commit to creating wellness packages, one area that can get overlooked is language. It’s amazing how much a simple email or conversation can affect a person’s day. Over time, those moments build up to influence a team’s and company’s work environment.
What we say and how we say it really does matter. That’s why I would encourage any employer who is focused on workplace wellness to consider how they can create a culture that communicates in a strengths-based way.
Affirming words have been shown to support mental health  and performance . They also boost oxytocin , which is the chemical responsible for affinity and security. When your people feel a sense of belonging and psychological safety, they are more likely to engage in your organization and identify new ideas that drive your business forward.
Emergenetics® Associates may remember the phrase “Language of Grace” from their Certification program. The concept refers to the practice of using words and phrases with positive connotations. By leaning into the strengths-based language of the Emergenetics Profile and embracing affirmative statements, companies can enhance staff wellbeing by creating an environment where all team members feel respected and appreciated.
It does take practice to utilize the Language of Grace effectively, and Emergenetics Associates have the resources to empower employees to adopt a positive approach. To help staff practice using encouraging vocabulary, let’s explore how you can apply your Emergenetics assets to inspire change.
Five Practices to Help Individuals Use the Language of Grace
1) Engage in peer coaching using mid-dyads or opposite Profiles.
What better way is there to see the value that comes from differing perspectives than to experience it for yourself? Staff can learn to appreciate the strengths of those who think and behave differently by partnering with colleagues in mid-dyads (meaning they share at least one – although not all – of the same preferences) or in opposite Profile pairings. For more information on mid-dyads, reference your Associate Training Guide.
By creating peer coaching opportunities, you can help individuals learn from coworkers and discover how they handle situations differently. It also allows staff to practice speaking in a positive, motivating way to people with distinct preferences. Finally, the act of building trust with individuals who have diverse outlooks can help team members honor the gifts that come from other Attributes.
2) Engage in the Thinking Attribute Walkabout.
The Thinking Attribute exercise comes from our Meeting of the Minds workshop and is designed to help colleagues learn about the brilliances of each preference. You can apply the activity in many settings, such as a team meeting, a leadership program or a lunch-and-learn.
Break your group into their most preferred Thinking Attributes and encourage staff to share the strengths of their viewpoints. Then, have team members move onto their second most preferred Attribute and continue through all four Thinking Attributes to give employees the opportunity to describe their associated gifts.
3) Complete Behavioral Lineups.
The Behavioral Lineups, which also come from our Meeting of the Minds workshop, can help employees recognize how their colleagues like to interact and reveal the advantages of every approach.
Start with the Expressiveness Attribute and split the group into their preferred Behavioral thirds. Ask them to describe the value they can bring to workplace interactions and encourage the other thirds to share what they appreciate about their colleagues’ takes that are different from their own. Then, repeat the exercise for Assertiveness and Flexibility.
4) Use Brainwork Made Easy to raise self-awareness.
Associates can access Brainwork Made Easy in the Emergenetics+ portal . The worksheet highlights the four Thinking Attributes, including their strengths and how they may appear in overuse. That section about “overuse” is eye-opening because it provides insights into how someone might be unintentionally perceived when using each Attribute.
Often, we aren’t even aware of the biases we may hold when it comes to different approaches to work. Using Brainwork Made Easy, encourage employees to consider their Least Preferred Attributes and whether they have used any of the vocabulary in the “overuse” column. Invite them to identify ways to reframe their statements by using the “Things to consider if this is not a preference” column instead.
5) Practice using affirming language by discussing one another’s Profiles.
When people prefer opposing Thinking and Behavioral styles, it can sometimes feel challenging to embrace one another’s views. One way to help employees see the benefits of working with an alternative perspective is to encourage staff to do a 3-2-1 activity.
In small group sessions, manager trainings or team meetings, partner staff in mid-dyads. Encourage the pairs to reflect on their teammate’s Profile and take turns identifying:
- 3 gifts of their partner’s Thinking and Behavioral preferences
- 2 ways their colleague’s Profile brings value to a meeting
- 1 commitment they will make to communicate more effectively with their coworker
Hint: The Emergenetics+ app and Brainwork Made Easy can be useful references for this activity.
As Robin Sharma has said: Words can inspire and words can destroy. Choose yours carefully.
By finding ways to help your staff learn to communicate in a manner that celebrates each other’s strengths and shows respect for differing viewpoints, you can promote an environment where employees feel honored and respected while simultaneously inspiring a better workplace culture.
Discover how you can use Emergenetics to create a more positive, productive work environment by exploring our Certification programs  or filling out the form below to connect with a staff member today!