Collaboration is on a fast track at the City of Dallas. City Manager, Ron Foggin, called me to explore how we could deliver a fresh take on customer service - one of the City's core values. He wanted to approach it from both an internal perspective (among the City's various departments - community development, emergency medical services, fire, police, parks & recreation, finance, public works, and legal); as well as how to best serve the multitude of external customers (citizens). We created, "Empowered Service: How to Deliver Excellence in Customer Service with Emotional Intelligence + Collaboration".
City employees readily embraced the series of interactive exercises aimed at raising their emotional awareness and their ability to more fluidly work together.
We engaged in some awkward and valuable listening exercises; we played at improvisation - not as comics but as team members understanding the value of "Yes, And" as a way to spark creativity and not shut down ideas; we explored how challenging it is to not use "I" in a conversation; the power of keeping agreements; and the energy of emotions in a game called, "Emotional Outbursts".
I was impressed with how this team accepted the challenge and started identifying areas in their work (and in their personal lives) they can integrate emotional intelligence and collaboration. The knowledge and tools the team practiced are all critical building blocks for solid relationships.