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Emotion At Work

Updated 2 days ago

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The Emotion at Work Podcast

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The Emotion at Work Podcast

iTunes Ratings

2 Ratings
Average Ratings

iTunes Ratings

2 Ratings
Average Ratings
Cover image of Emotion At Work

Emotion At Work

Updated 2 days ago

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The Emotion at Work Podcast

Rank #1: Episode 32 - Emotion at Work in Community Management

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For this episode we delve into Community Management with our guest Ady Howes (@adyhowes).  Now there is an argument that with the Emotion at Work hub recently launched ( this episode is either Phil being really shameless, sensible or maybe even organised.  You, fair listener can choose ;-))

During the conversation Ady and Phil explore; emotions for community members, managers, leaders in organisations and the links into culture too.  They also share some of their experiences of community management done well and.... less well.  

Your references for this one:

Buzzing Communities by Richard Millington and thanks to Jo Cook (@lightbulbJo) for the recommendation

The 5 P's of Community Management from the amazing Mike Collins (@CommunityMike)

The Diffusion of Innovation Curve:

Festival of Work 2019 (aka the L&D Show)

Thanks for listening

Oct 12 2018
1 hour 3 mins

Rank #2: Episode 30 - Emotion at Work Stories - Working as an unhealed victim of child abuse

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As is often the case with our ‘stories’ series, the content has the potential to affect people, and so fair listener, I want you to take care with this episode please.  I am talking with my guest Katrina Colliner (@KatrinaMCollier) about how being an unhealed victim of child abuse affected her in the workplace.  She now describes herself as a ‘victor over’ her abuse and you can hear more about what she means by that in the episode.  

If you are affected by what we talk about and you are feeling particularly vulnerable, please remember you can call the Samaritans at any time on 116 123 and I have googled other places of support and added links the sites and organisations I found below.  

As this is a ‘stories’ episode there are no ‘references’ as such, there were a few things in particular that Katrina mentioned as things that helped her and I have added those too.  

Thanks for listening

References and links

Katrina mentioned Pia Mellody and that is a person, here is a link to her site

Sep 06 2018
1 hour 2 mins

Rank #3: Episode 29 - Emotion at Work in Banter, Impoliteness and Power

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For this episode we delve into three areas; banter, impoliteness and power.  All seperate yet inextricably linked.  All things that are common in the workplace.  My guest this episode is Dr Derek Bousfield ( and he goes by @DrWordyBoy on Twitter.  

We discuss what ‘banter’ is, how it is defined, why it is a healthy thing and is somehting that can cause division and friction in the workplace.  Derek’s descriptive definition for Banter is ‘Insincere Impoliteness’ and we go on to define ‘Imploiteness’ as well as ‘Politeness’ and ‘Power’.  One of the examples we discuss how banter can be veiled Impoliteness and how Politeness markers or actions can also be Impolitentess.  All of this is down to... *drum roll* context.

As part of our discussion we link back to aspects from other podcasts where we talk about face and facework (episodes 12 and 24), conversation management (episode 10) and in/out groups (episode 7).

Your references for this one:

Barthesian myth (around 16 minutes)

Labelling (around 23 minutes) NB this is not exactly what Derek mentions but it gives you an idea where he is going with his thinking

Terms of address and titles (around 39 minutes)

Banter and mock Impoliteness (by Derek and Michael Haugh)

Power (around 54 minutes) this is a fab book that explores the dynamism of power

Jonathan Culpepper 2011 Impolitentess work (around 1 hour 9 minutes)

Derek Bousfield 2008 Monograph on Impoliteness (around 1 hour 9 minutes)

Clare Hardaker on Trolling (around 1 hour 10 minutes) these are examples of her non academic work

Lynn Truss ‘Talk to the Hand’ (around 1 hour 11 minutes)

Journal of Politeness Volume 14 Issue 2 (around 1 hour 12 minutes)

Thanks for listening!!

Aug 24 2018
1 hour 20 mins

Rank #4: Episode 28 - Emotion at Work Stories - Depression

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This episode picks up the Emotion at Work in Stories theme I started earlier this year. This time it is with Karen Teago (@teago_emplaw) as my guest, we take a trip into how depression has been a part of her life for 15 years.

I asked Karen to be on the podcast as she wrote a blog a few years ago ( and it affected me then and still does now.  Depresssion is one of the things that is both talked about and not talked about all at the same time.  With Karen being willing to be open and frank about her experiences it was important to me that I create a place and space to allow a depth of exploration of the topic.  

This is a frank and honest episode and our conversation lasted for nearly an hour and twenty minutes so there is a lot to listen to.  If you are affected by anything in this episode then there are support options open to you:

The Samaritans can be contacted here or call them on 116 123 (it is free) 

Mind can be contacted here

You can also call the NHS on 111 or make an appointment with your local GP

Karen is happy to chat and you can find her on @teago_emplaw

I am happy to listen and you can find me here or @philwillcox

We explore her experiences with depression as a condition, with medication, with post natal depression, the important area of disclosure and how guilt has been a part of her experience too.  I (maybe unfairly) ask Karen for any advice or suggestions if anything in the podcast resonates with you and I add my thoughts too. At one point Karen talks about how she became aware of her condition by reading a case she was working on. 

After we recorded the episode she found this paragraph from 'Notes on a Nervous Planet' by Matt Haig (@matthaig1) that she felt better explained her experience:

"Later, doctors would offer labels.  'Panic disorder', 'generalised anxiety disorder' and 'depression'.  These labels were worrying, but also important, because they gave me something to work with.  They stopped me feeling like an alien.  I was a human being with human illnesses, which other humans have had - millions and millions of humans - and most of them had either overcome their illnesses or had somehow managed to live with them.  Even after I knew the names of the illnesses I had, I believed they were all stemming from inside me.  They were just there, the way the grand canyon was just there" 

Here's a link to the full book -

With this being a Stories episode there aren’t many references as such. There are some things we talk about and here are the links to those things:

The unexpected yet innocuous question came from Margaret Burnside @margaretburnsid

The book on sleep Karen references is

The Mind Website with details for resources for Corporate partners

More information for breastfeeding and taking medication

Aug 02 2018
1 hour 21 mins

Rank #5: Episode 27 - Emotion at Work in Emotion Regulation

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This episdode is one of those that talks about stuff you as a human do all the time but aren't all that aware of or use different words to decsribe it.  My guest this time is James Gross ( who is the worlds leading researcher into Emotion Regluation.  Through the podcast we chat about:

- What are emotions?

- What is emotion regulation?

- The 5 families of emotion regulation strategies

- Examples of what people do within each of those families

- How emotion regulation can be extrinsic (where others use these strategies with/for/to you to 'help' you regulate your emotions) and intrinsic (where you use them with your own emotions)

- What the workplace and individuals can learn from emotion regulation

This was a great episode to record!!!! My inner geek was super excited

Your references:

Links to all the research papers that James mentions at approx 52 minutes

The 'Emotion and Self Regulation Lab' where Gal Sheppes works that James mentions at approx 56 minutes

The project that Angela Duckworth is working on that I mention at approx 58 minutes

Jul 19 2018
1 hour

Rank #6: Episode 26 - Emotion at Work in Emotional Exploitation

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This is one of the most thoughtful podcasts I have done. You can hear the thinking. Hear when my guest Jo Wainwright (@jo_coaches) and or I are paying attention, listening and supporting each other. There will be a temptation to listen to this episode on 1.5 or 2 times speed as there are some pauses and gaps in speech. Instead, I implore you to do one or both of these things:
Let it play as it was originally intended. 
Pay attention to the way that Jo listens and supports me and the conversation. 
There is some real value in learning in the interaction style used in this podcast. 
Jo and I explore the roles of emotion and emotions in the workplace. We talk about emotional labour, emotional work and emotional exploitation. How at work humans are expected to do both emotional work and labour and yet are not supported to do so. I love that Jo makes a comparison with how at work we will ensure people have hard hats, supportive chairs, high visibility jackets, ear defenders, keyboards and mice that are ergonomically designed. Yet, what is lacking is the safety kit to support emotional work and labour in the workplace. 
We get into some of the tanglible actions, ideas, suggestions, experiences that can help make this work and/or work better in workplaces. 
Your references are as follows:
Emotion work -
Emotional labour -
Action learning sets -
Victor Frankl “Man’s search for meaning” - 
Before change there has to be acceptance - a blog linked to this notion -
Reflexivity -
Episode 12 with Prof Dawn Archer -
Thinking Environment -
Jun 28 2018
1 hour 24 mins

Rank #7: Episode 25 - Emotion at work in Emotional Intelligence

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In this episode I interview someone that has been a part of my professional life for just over a decade.  Like me, Cliff Lansley (@clifflansley) from EIA Group ( has a deep knowledge, passion and expertise in the world of emotion.  For our chat we take a deep dive into what may be some of the key areas this podcast should have explored in the past; what are emotions? what is emotional intelligence? how can you test or assess EQ? 
Through our conversation we get into some of the risks, issues and opportunities with the current state of emotional intelligence as well as how we, or more specifically how Cliff is using his PhD to push forward the approaches and methods we use to view and assess EQ.  The two main gaps.... context (you can see why we get along) and goals.  
Here are the references too:
Paul Ekman - what scientists that study emotion agree on (2016)
Paul Ekman wider review and access to some of his papers:
Joseph Ladoux - The Emotional Brain - the idea that triggers are ‘indelibly burned’
Is emotional intelligence about traits, abilities or both?
Howard Gardner - multiple intelligences
The Emotional Intelligence Consortium
The Cult of Personality Testing
A critique of emotional intelligence
The Development of Emotional Competence
Assessing Emotional Intelligence
Understanding Emotions
Jun 14 2018
1 hour 15 mins

Rank #8: Episode 23 - Emotion at Work in the workplace

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On this episode I get to chat with Monica Parker (@monicaparker) from Hatch Analytics and we chat about something that has interested me for years.  I have spent a fair bit of time in different workplaces and they had profound affects on how I felt both on specific days and over time. So, I am really excited that I am going to get to explore this with our guest today.

Looking to the physical workplace is something that is huge right now. Whether that be trying to imitate google with slides and bean bags, considering the emotional impact of things like space, temperature and desks or the need/preference for remote working. all of these things (and more) have emotional input, consequences and often, in my experience, this emotional aspect is forgottten or relegated to low priority. For me, it has to start with emotion and how people feel and work out from there. Then again, I would say that I suppose. 



SPSS (it is a statistics number cruncher)

Resolution Foundation story (that Phil mentioned)

Universal Basic Income

Emotional Equations - Chip Conley

Video from Porter Davis

Study from Adam Grant

*to follow*

May 21 2018
1 hour 11 mins

Rank #9: Episode 22 - Emotion at Work Stories - Anxiety, difference and minority groups

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This episode picks up the Emotion at Work in Stories theme I shared at the start of 2018. This time with Tony Jackson (@JacksonT0ny) as my guest, we explore how anxiety has always been a part of his life and has been working on it more purposefully in the last five years or so.

We delve into the factors that have and continue to contribute to the anxiety that Tony experiences, his ways of working with his anxiety and what he does from a restorative perspective.  We talk about how 'difference' is something that Tony carries with him and is a near constant feature in his thoughts and then affects either his approaches to interactions and interactions themselves.  Tony is also really clear that his experiences have, and continue to shape his empathy and inclusivity.  He says that his stories and experiences have given him things that he works with and at times struggles with and it has also equipped him with a set of skills that help him to work really well with others.  Finally, we get into the detail and practical things that Tony does to help him be well and enjoy his work and life.     

With this being a Stories episode there aren’t many references as such. There are some things from the news and other places we talk about and here are the links to those things:

Tony talks about psychosynthesis and I forget to ask him what it is, here is a link:

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver:

The Psychology of Executive Coaching by Bruce Peltier

May 04 2018
1 hour 23 mins

Rank #10: Episode 21 - Emotion at Work in Employee Experience

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 I loved recording this podcast because it gives a look at the background and theory as well as practical experience, hints and tips for reviewing and improving Employee Experience.  In this episode I am joined by Lara Plaxton (@_Lara_HR on Twitter or here on LinkedIn who is the head of HR at FDM UK.  Lara has a fairly unique perspective on employee experience as the work that FDM do, doesn't necessarily match with the standard model.  FDM support organisations and graduates, ex-forces and returners by placing graduates in client organisations but importantly, those graduates remain as employees of FDM.  So FDM's employees experience two (potentially) different cultures; one for being an employee of FDM and then working in a clients business every day.  

During this podcast we explore some key terms and definitions around User Experience, Employee Experience and Design Thinking before going more specifically into what Lara and FDM do to measure and improve their employee experience.  We cover some key things to think about, tips and techniques to review or improve employee experience and we delve deep into the thinking and theory behind this area. 

As always, links and references:

Systems thinking - short video with Peter Senge - research paper (open access)  - short article on design thinking - Pullman and Gross (2004) Ability of experience design elements to elicit emotions and loyalty behaviours,+4th+Edition-p-9781119020752 - Preece, Sharp and Rogers (2015); Interaction Design - Beyond Human-Computer Interaction

Employee Experience - Short definition - summary article - Cascio (2014); Leveraging Emplolyer Branding, performance management and human resource development to enhance employee retention

User Experience

The Service - Profit chain HBR article

Moira Clarke 10 year causation analysis

Human Centred Design - Giacomin (2015); What is Human Centred Design

Gamification - Dymek & Zackariasson (2017); the business of gamification

 Design Thinking - Video with Tim Brown CEO of IDEO

Apr 19 2018
1 hour 19 mins

Rank #11: Episode 19 - Emotion at Work in Humanising the workplace

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In this episode I am joined by Sarah Taylor Ph.D ( where we explore her research and practice into the ways we can enrich workplaces by humaising it and how we can also bureaucratise it too.  Our focus is her research in an elderly care setting and what employees and care workers in that setting really enjoy about their work, and how it is not necessarily what lines up with any set of 'professional standards'.  We begin with setting a philospohical and sociological backdrop and then dive into a lot of detail as to what her research has found.  We close by learning more about how Sarah is taking her research into a more corporate setting and looking at how her findings can inform ways that her organisation manages performance.  A really great conversation and as always... the references:

Rupert Sheldrake -
Theory U -
- Scharmer, C. O. (2009). Theory U: Leading from the Future as it Emerges. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.
The 5th wave of public health -
Non paywalled/access limited article -
Hanlon, P., Carlisle, S., Hannah, M., Reilly, D., & Lyon, A. (2011). Making the 
case for a ―fifth wave‖ in public Health. Public Health, 125(1), 30–36. 
Atul Gawande - Being Mortal: Medicene and what matters in the end
Martin Buber: I - Thou relationship
- Andrews, N. (2014). We Need to Talk about Love‘. Co-production Walves. 
Available from:
- Kitwood, T. (2012). Dementia Reconsidered: The Person Comes First. Berkshire: Open University Press.
Loss of practical wisdom
Owen & Mayer - beautiful moments of connection
Mar 22 2018
1 hour 13 mins

Rank #12: Episode 18 - Emotion at Work in Stress and Wellbeing

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In this episode I am delighted to have Professor Sir Cary Cooper as my guest.  Cary is the President of the CIPD, researcher, practitioner and part of the Manchester Business School.  His accolades are too long for me to list here so if you want to find out more about him, here is a link to a bio of his.  I wanted to get Cary on the podcast for quite a while now as someone that is personally experienced and a respected researcher in this area.  We get into:

Cary's personal experiences with Stress and Wellbeing

His experiences working, consulting and researching in the workplace

The importance of stress and mental health for individuals, teams, companies and the economy as a whole

Uncertainty, anxiety, burnout and the difference between acute and chronic stress

This is a fab episode and here are the links and references:

Articles on techno stress
Chronic Fatigue - Spurgeon, Harrington & Cooper (1997)
Articles linked to Antonio Horatio-Osorio the CEO of Lloyds that openly discussed his mental health challenges
Report on social mobility in the UK (2017)
Mar 08 2018
1 hour

Rank #13: Episode 16 - Emotion at Work Stories - Imposter Syndrome

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This episode picks up the Emotion at Work in Stories theme I shared at the start of 2018. This time with Amanada Arrowsmith (@pontecarloblue) as my guest, we take a trip into how imposter syndrome has been a part of her life from early childhood but really took hold in her early twenties.

We explore this internal voice that often tells her that she’s not good enough, not enough, that she will be found out and can cause crippling self doubt. We get into where that voice has come from, what has given it voice, how she quietens it, her strategies for working with it effectively.

As well as exploring the practical, tangible and everyday things Amanda has done and continues to do, we get into how society, norms and life can shape the formation and growth of this ‘inner critic’.

With this being a Stories episode there aren’t many references as such. There are some things from the news and other places we talk about and here are the links to those things:

Story about the liver branding surgeon

Reading I did around types of Imposter Syndrome

Does imposter syndrome affect women more than men?

Sas Petherick 

Blog from Gemma Dale (@HR_Gem) on Imposter Syndrome

Feb 01 2018
1 hour 23 mins

Rank #14: Episode 15 - Emotion at Work in Memory & Learning

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In this episode you get to hear Nick Shackleton-Jones, Sukh Pabial & I explore and share our views of emotion, cognition, memory and learning.  The conversation takes turns and explores areas I didn’t plan or expect and was really intersting all the same.
We talk about the affective context model where Nick suggests that as humans everything that we think, has an emotional basis behind it.  We talk about using repetition in learning, making things memorable and emotionally evocative and how at times we just need to attend to what others are concerned about.
As we cover a lot of ground, there are a LOT of resources and links all listed below.
Nick’s original blog post that started this conversation
Sukh’s post in response
Friedrich Nietzsche
Martin Heidegger
Relevance Theory
Working memory summary
TED talk on how your working memory makes sense of the world
Episodic memory summary
Semantic (or declarative memory)
Herman Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve
Summary of Bartlett’s 1932 Study ‘war of the ghosts’
Elizabeth Loftus talking at TED about the fallability of memory
Harris (1973) study into estimates of basketball player height
Concern - Task - Resource Model
Iowa Gambling Study
Paul Ekman and Emotion
Tal Ben-Shahar and wellbeing and positive psychology
Martin Seligman and positive psychology
The Charity Mind
Antonio Damasio - Descartes error
How we decide by Jonah Lehrer
Daniel Kahneman- Thinking Fast and Slow
The TED talk I mention on how people look back on their lives positively
Jan 18 2018
1 hour 5 mins

Rank #15: Episode 12 - Emotion at Work in Impression Management

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This is a long episode.  Mainly because this is a complex and complicated area.  Also though, Dawn and I are research colleagues and friends too.  In this episode we get into a whole host of interesting and linked topics:

Impression Management - how we work (non)strategically to manage how others see us

Self Presentation - how we will work to present our 'best possible self' according to context

Face and facework - the lines we negotiate, others give us or let us take in interaction and how they shape our identity(ies)

Dark side of EI - how emotional intelligence can be used to change behaviour of others

Principles of Influence - linking to Cialdini's 6 principles (Authority, Liking, Social Proof, Scarcity, Commitment and Consistency and Reciprocity)

This was a joy to record and I hope that you enjoy listening to it. 

Yes, it is

a) long

b) geeky

c) academic at times

d) practical at times 

It is also a whole lot of fun and you, dear listener, are getting a deep insight into human interaction.  ENJOY!!!!


EI (including the “dark side”)

    Kilduff, M., D.S. Chiaburu and J.I. Menges (2010). ‘Strategic use of emotional intelligence in organizational settings: Exploring the dark side’. Research in Organizational Behavior 30: 129-152.  
    Mayer, J.D. and P. Salovey (1997). ‘What is emotional intelligence?’ In: P. Salovey and D.J. Sluyter (eds.). Emotional development and emotional intelligence, pp.3-31. New York: Basic Books.

Credibility/image restoration

    Benoit, W.L. (1997). “Image Repair Discourse and Crisis Communication”, Public Relations Review, 23(2), pp. 177-186.
    Benoit, W.L. & Drew, S. (1997). “Appropriateness and effectiveness of image repair strategies”, Communication Reports, 10, pp. 153-163.
    Benoit, W.L. and Stratham, A. (2004). “Source Credibility and the Elaboration Likelihood Model”. In: J.S. Seiter and R.H. Gass, Perspectives on Persuasion, Social Influence, and Compliance Gaining. London: Pearson Education, Inc.


    Goffman, E. (1967). Interaction Ritual: Essays on Face-to-Face Behavior. Garden City, N.Y.: Anchor Books.

Impression management

    DuBrin, A. (2010). Impression Management in the Workplace: Research, Theory, Practice. London: Routledge.
    Goffman, Erving 1959. The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life. Garden City, NY: Anchor/  Doubleday.

Self-presentation / self-disclosure

    Dindia, K.(2000). ‘Self-disclosure, identity and relationship development’.   In: K. Dindia and S. Duck (eds.). Communication and Personal Relationships. Chichester: Wiley.
    McKay, R., M. Davis and P. Fanning (2009). Messages: The Communication Skills Book. Oakland, C.A.: New Harbinger. 
    Schlenker, B. (2003) ‘Self-presentation’, in M. Leary and J. Price (eds) Handbook of Self and Identity. New York, NY: Guilford Press. 492-518.


Nov 02 2017
1 hour 40 mins

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