Using Ancient Chinese Wisdom for Modern Team Communications

ACS founding Director Emma Willey is the heart of our unique team communications programme. Emma has spent over 20 years in the Health and Safety industry. She worked her way through the ranks of Asbestos testing, management, project management, quality and consultancy before moving to the business side of ACS. One of the systems that this brought her into contact with was the Myers-Briggs Type Indicators (MBTI). However, with 16 personality types and a need for in depth knowledge of the system, she noted that many companies did not benefit from these personality tests as much as they might. The complexity of MBTI means it can be difficult to maintain without the input of a consultant.

Whilst her professional expertise developed within HR, Wellbeing and Finance, she also devloped a personal interest in using complementary therapies to treat survivors of trauma and in 2015 Emma become a qualified clinical practitioner of the “Eden Method”, a treatment system based on a combination of 9 traditional disciplines that draws heavily on Chinese Medicine. She still treats clients from her private practice, something she find immensely rewarding.

One traditional Chinese system in particular stood out to Emma; the concept of the 5 Elements. Though simple on the surface, this 4000 year old language for describing personality types and interactions has hugely practical business applications. Emma realised the simplicity and flexibility of the 5 Elements was perfect for helping people better understand and communicate with their colleagues and she began to apply it to her HR and Team building work to great effect.

The courses and consultation she provides do not require any knowledge or belief in the concepts of Traditional Chinese Medicine. They provide a common language through which teams can understand themsleves, avoid tension, increase productivity and create a healthier working environment.

Training courses currently offered include:

Introduction to Yourselves
Learn the language of the five elements and how they have always described personalities and interactions. Get an idea of how the elements are balanced in your attendees natures (and how others think they are).

Knowing your Teams
From accounts to development, teams function better when they understand each other. This deep dive into a team’s collective makeup will illuminate its members.  We also call this the “Oh! That’s why…” course.

Talking to the Boss
There are always people who do not want to talk openly to their boss, or managers who struggle to be honest without offending. The reasons, and solutions for this, can be easily described and understood with the language of the five elements. We can teach you to use these to empower yourself and those you manage.

Why They Never Tell You Anything
More focussed on Senior Management Teams, this course looks at problems that you are having communicating between the strata of your business. If you feel that despite your clearest messages or your most established processes you feel mis-understood or that you are shouting into a void then we work with you to break those blockages.

Our Consultancy

We often find that after learning some of the 5 elements language to describe personality dynamics, clients approach us for a fresh perspective on particular issues. These often emulate business challenges that Emma herself has had to overcome, such as conflict resolution, team wellbeing and boardroom tension. Every situation is a unique balance of interests, just like every person is a unique blend of the elements. However, frequently the most healthy approach to solving those problems can also be found in applying basic rules in creative ways. We are always happy to work with clients on specific problems. This can be done on an ad-hoc or contract basis and, as such, the service pricing is as unique as the situation.