Deri's Blogs

Positive Leadership

Think of the last time you were engaged, energized and productive at work.? What was going on?

I?ll bet a lot of what contributed to that engaging, energizing and productive experience had to do with a positive leader who knew how to create an engaging work environment.

All too often, we leaders focus?our time on creating strategy and?crafting tactical plans.? What gets neglected is the? reality that true success or failure lies in our ability to influence the behaviour of the people who will be executing the plan?our team members.

Leading effectively is all about fostering positive feelings in the people whose cooperation and support you need to accomplish your goals.? People are the core of any organization and positive people practices will propel you and your organization to achieve new heights of performance possibilities.

Individuals, teams, leaders and organizations achieve their greatest potential when a positive, solution-focused and strengths-based approach is at the heart of your organizational culture.? It has long been clear to most of us that leaders create culture. ?Well, how about you?? Are you a positive leader?

Whether at home or at work…what you think, feel, and do determines what you?ll get back from others.? Are you getting what you need?

Positive Leadership is about?energizing people to partner with you to achieve their maximum performance potential.

Positive Leadership is:


Positive leaders are connected to the organization and driven beyond personal gain or achievements.? Then, they help the team achieve meaningfulness and purpose, by connecting the core values of team members to work outcomes, and by focusing on the long term impact and benefits created by the work.

What purpose does your team or department serve?? What does the team value?? How does your purpose serve others?


Positive leaders model hope for the team and for the organization.? In order for others to buy-in to the leader?s message about positive change, the leader must exude a sense of optimism.? To build your capacity for optimism, tune in.

What information are you choosing to focus on? Does that information nourish or drain your sense of hope? ?With whom do you surround yourself? Do those people?add to, or take away from,?your sense of hope???You can take steps to bring more of what adds to your sense of hope into your work and your life.


Positive leaders recognize who has the expertise and drive to take the lead at any time, and the positive leader gladly shares the leadership role.? When this happens, the leader not only reinforces a key leadership practice of building team capability, but?also inspires others to do the same.

Who on your team is ready to take a leadership role?? Have you shared everything you need to share so that the team is ready to assume leadership?? Do you provide autonomy to develop other positive leaders?


Positive leaders develop a personal sense of ownership and self-management.? They share the purpose, vision and values of the organization, on purpose, and engage others to?do the same.? Positive leaders are self-aware and attentive to the whole system; seeing and realizing new possibilities.? Positive leaders walk their talk and recognize and reward team members regularly.

How can you produce a sense of ownership on your team?? Do you walk your talk?? Do you make your intention clear?


Trust is the foundation of any successful team or organization (or family).? It is a prerequisite for authentic connection and healthy relationships.? A positive leader who is trusting helps to open people up to be honest in their communication.? Honest communication facilitates open dialogue to create the level of commitment and accountability required for positive team results.

Do you ?trust first? or do you wait for others to trust you before you trust them?? What do you do to instill trust in others?


Leadership is infectious.? It is ?viral?.? The leader?s behaviours are transmitted through the entire organization; they? permeate and influence every activity.? Leaders?affect organizational climate when?they personally induce, develop and display emotion….with a particular emphasis on positive emotion.? Positive emotions broaden people?s minds and their ability to perform, while negative emotions narrow scope and coping ability.

What kind of infectious agent do you want to be?? What has been the effect of your leadership on others?


Vulnerability and authenticity are intertwined.? Positive leaders understand that in order for others to truly engage with them, the leader must be authentic, and that takes a measure of vulnerability.? When we ?play a role? at work; we are not our true, authentic, vulnerable selves.? Positive leaders share their fears, weaknesses, and mistakes as easily as they share their joys, strengths and successes.? They know that their role is not to have all the right answers (because they definitely don?t have them all) but instead is to ask lots of questions.

Are you vulnerable?? How often do you ask your team ?what do you think???


To be emotive means to relate to, appeal to, and express emotion.? All of these are practices of a positive leader.? While a range of emotions are a part of the normal human experience, researchers have found that work teams with a 3 to 1 positive-to-negative ratio were more productive (and satisfied) than teams that did not reach that ratio.

Are you empathic and understanding of others? emotions?? Do you appeal to other?s positive emotions as a way of motivating action?? Do you congruently express your emotion, inspiring trust in others who will see you are more authentic?

There is a lovely quotation by Steven?Stein and Howard Book from ‘The EQ Edge’ that I think sums up the essence of the missed opportunity if you aren’t practicing Positive Leadership:

?You might be as sharp as a tack, but if you can?t convey what you know to other people, you?re in trouble.? As creative and skillful as you might be, if you?re unaware of how you relate to others, if you behave disdainfully or angrily or impulsively, no one will stick around long enough to admire your skill and creativity.?

What are your thoughts?? How has a positive leader impacted you?

Deri Latimer, B. Mgt., CSP, is an expert in possibilities for people! She is one of the top 10% of speakers globally who hold the designation of Certified Speaking Professional, the speaking profession?s measure of excellence in professional platform skill. Deri combines a Business degree in Human Resources with experience from business sectors including health care, manufacturing, education, agriculture, government, mining, transportation, tourism, and professional services. Deri helps individuals and organizations optimize their performance by managing their energy; applying the latest research and practice in positive psychology, appreciative inquiry, emotional intelligence, and employee engagement.

What Clients Say...

“Deri, you are the best! Not a dull moment and the time went too fast!”
Linda Borbridge, Manager, Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
“I’m often asked to recommend a professional speaker who will captivate and motivate, and without hesitation Deri Latimer comes to mind. Deri has a reputation for a no-nonsense, energetic, synergistic approach. Her cutting-edge sessions are the perfect combination of science and inspiration and will have you moving into a new groove.”
Dr. Lewena Bayer, CEO, Civility Experts Inc.
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Joseph Bork, Program Director, St. Mary’s University
“I am usually the type to sit in the crowd, quietly take it all in, and take notes, notes that end up in a binder, often never to be seen once I return to work. Deri was engaging, fun and as real as they get. I was so moved by her session that I shocked myself by approaching her after the session to chat. During the session I didn’t need to take notes because her concepts hit home and stuck with me. I have already taken her advice and acted on her tips and tools to be more positive. Her positivity is contagious and her message is one that everyone should take time to listen to.”
Amy Normal, VP, Corporate Services, Said Business School, University of Oxford
“I had the privilege of hearing Deri keynote at our conference. She captivates, motivates, and positively engages an audience with her unique combination of wisdom about neuroscience and positive behaviors that can be life changing when put into action. I would recommend her without any reservation for those seeking a speaker who can move an audience – from associates on a manufacturing floor to members of an executive leadership team – into action. Her takeaways are designed for positive impact. Prepare to laugh, to be curious, to be hungry for more time to listen to Deri.”
Vickie Maris, Host, Agile Digital Business
“Deri, your seminar truly resonated with our team. You took the time to learn about our roles, our challenges and opportunities and created an inspiring and motivating seminar just for us and made an impact with every person there. Having your book to use as a tool in our day-to-day has also been very valuable and has enhanced the results we got out of the time with you. We all hope that we will see you again at the next conference!”
Chantelle Arsenault, GBA, Great West Life Assurance Company of Canada
“It was an absolute pleasure to have Deri speak at our AGM. Deri brought an amazing level of passion and energy as she engaged our members with her talk on growth mindset. If you are looking for a speaker to connect with your audience, I would highly recommend that you reach out to Deri. Thank you, Deri – we were lucky to have you!”
Rob Chester, Director Information Security, Wawanesa Insurance
“A wonderfully authentic speaker with an infectious positive energy, Deri takes the crowd back to the roots of inspiration by sparking something within the humanity of the people in the room. Her fantastic sense of humor and knowledgeable way of integrating experiential learning opportunities into an inspirational message makes her a speaker not to miss!”
Ashley Collette, Social Work Officer, Canadian Armed Forces
“I forgot to take notes because I was taking it all in and feeling change take hold…”
Derek Rumboldt-Delouche, Director, Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada
“That was fantastic! That was the most energized I have ever felt leaving a conference!!”
Barb Spurway, Principal Consultant, Protegra
“I cannot exaggerate how positively our Forum delegates reacted to your presentation. You set the perfect tone for the entire conference and left a lasting impression on our delegates and CPA staff alike.”
Sarah Marshall, President, Canadian Physiotherapy Association
“You changed people.”
Michelle Kletke, Human Resources Manager, TNG, Jim Pattison Group