A trait of the best leaders: Contagious positive energy 

Having a positive relational energy that helps uplift and inspire workers is the most powerful predictor of organizational success, according to a April 18 Harvard Business Review article.

The authors of the article, Emma Seppälä, PhD, of Yale and Stanford universities, and Kim Cameron, PhD, of the University of Michigan, used their research, interviews and experience to show why energizing leaders are so important.

To understand which leaders have such positive energy, Dr. Seppälä and Dr. Cameron asked all employees to rate what happens to their energy levels after interacting with other team members. Leaders with high positive relational energy were identified by other team members stating their energy levels increased after interacting with them. 

The researchers found that leaders with positive relational energy consistently produce more engaged workforces, lower employee turnover and increased feelings of employee wellbeing. They also found that there was a higher concentration of such leaders at high performing companies as opposed to average-performing companies. Innovation, teamwork, financial performance and team cohesion all improved when led by positive energizers. 

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