The CQI’s first corporate connect event of 2019, Driving Performance and Enabling Change: How Great Leadership Powers Success, took place on 29 January in London, held in collaboration with Shirley Parsons Limited (SPL).

Dramatic changes don’t work as well as consistent changes, suggested the main speaker for the day, Jamil Qureshi, a world-class expert in driving business performance and co-founder of the agency We Do Things Differently, focusing on personal and organisational change. “It’s easier to change 100 things by 1% than one thing 100%,” he said.

Successful organisations learn faster and better than their competitors and have the strongest networks, Qureshi commented, advising on how to achieve sustainable success. “Success never happens in isolation – we are always part of a team and it is important for us to understand our network. Companies no longer compete against companies. Networks compete against networks.”

After explaining the We Think, We Feel and We Act principle (a person has a system of thinking that affects how that person feels, so that person’s actions are according to the way that person thinks), Qureshi said that to change actions, you need to change how people think in your organisation. This makes the difference between commitment and compliance.

“Too many people are too busy trying to change their own actions, or their team’s actions, by working on behaviours, but the precursor to that are our thoughts. So, the difference between commitment and compliance, if you are looking into changing a behaviour, is whether you work on the thoughts or whether you work on the actions.”  

People who perform at exceptional levels are those “trying to achieve something”, instead of trying to avoid negative consequences, said Qureshi. We should all act as if we were the best we can be, understand what we are doing well, and do more of that to perform at our best, he suggested.

Attending the event was Cecilia Suarez-Lledo Friera, Quality Department Manager at Fluor Corporation, who described the event as “interesting and enlightening”. “I believe in emotional intelligence and that tackling the team members’ feelings is how we can make things happen.”