Seasalt is a hugely popular clothing brand and a rapidly growing business. Inspired by all the things they love about Cornwall, in the United Kingdom, the team at Seasalt is committed and passionate. Helping the leadership team to lead in an authentic and mindful manner, to communicate effectively and work collaboratively, wherever they are based in the UK, is key for Seasalt – to maintain the strong company culture as the company grows.
One of the challenges of fast growth is that many of the leadership team had received no formal management training. Seasalt wanted to proactively avoid problems and develop skills in key areas such as giving feedback and having effective conversations. That’s why Seasalt developed its Leading People Programme, entirely underpinned by Emotional Intelligence (EI).
Seasalt introduced the concept of EI to enable their leaders to assess and manage their own attitudes, feelings and behaviours, and to find more space for themselves and their teams in a busy environment. To kick off the Seasalt Leading People Programme, we designed and ran a one-day ‘Leading with EI’ workshop. This was followed up later in the year with a ‘Coaching with EI’ workshop to sustain and build on the group’s development. A one-day workshop based on our Leadership Climate Indicator 360 survey is now the foundation for the second year of the programme.
‘Leading with EI’ has so far helped over 40 senior leaders to understand the key concepts of EI and their personal EI profile, before considering the focus for their own personal development. Participants have been provided with the practical tools and methods to help with building new habits and practicing EI within their teams. The ‘Coaching with EI’ workshop has given them the opportunity to practice an emotionally intelligent model of coaching to really amplify their leadership impact, and the Leadership Climate day is providing leaders with a clear understanding of ‘what it’s like to be led by them’, along with clear personal development actions.
The Leading People Programme is recognised as a Learning Programme of Excellence by the Learning and Performance Institute. Our contribution was a significant factor in achieving this endorsement.
In addition, Seasalt has experienced a clear change. Senior leaders now work more collaboratively across the business and feel they can lead using their own authentic style. Hard feedback and healthy challenge are being delivered much more frequently and skilfully, and the language and practice of Emotional Intelligence have become commonplace across the business as leaders talk passionately about their own development.