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Coaching & Emotional Intelligence Training Is Needed In Leadership Training

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According to an article from Georgetown University, “leadership coaching is needed today more than ever as a critical tool for organizational change.” Increasingly, in today’s challenging public and private sector environment, almost all leaders indicate that they not only want coaching but need it. (LaBier, 2013) The question is why.

An article in Psychology Today may point to the answers. It was proposed that because of increased global competitiveness, challenging cultural dynamics, the downward trajectories in the economic environment, increased organizational turmoil and the astronomically higher levels of stress, the success rate and longevity of today’s top executives is now vastly different than that their counterparts a generation ago. In other words, top leaders can now expect less managerial success and shorter careers than their predecessors.

In the past two decades, 30% of Fortune 500 CEOs have lasted less than 3 years in their positions. Top executive failure rates are as high as 75% and are rarely less than 30%. Chief executives are now lasting 7.6 years on a global average which is down from 9.5 years in 1995. And, according to the Harvard Business Review, two out of five new CEOs fail in their first 18 months on the job. It appears that the major reason for the failure has nothing to do with competence, or knowledge, or experience, but rather with hubris and ego and a leadership style which may be out of touch with the changing leadership environment in modern times.

According to Dr. Marcus Mottley in an article entitled: “Why Today’s Leaders Need Emotional Intelligence Coaching”: “The bottom line is that leaders of small and large, public or private sector organizations need help. And the kind of help they need is not in the technical arena where they are mostly competent and highly experienced. The help they need is in the area popularly called ‘soft skills’ which involves topical areas such as: interpersonal, communication and relational skills, influencing and motivational skills, awareness of and managing their own emotions, and, dealing effectively with the emotions of others, etc.“

What is the relationship between Coaching and Emotional Intelligence (EQ or EI)?

Most coaching interventions try to enhance some aspect of EQ, usually under the name of social, interpersonal, or soft skills training. The rationale for this is that “whereas IQ is very hard to change, EQ can increase with deliberate practice and training.” (Chamorro-Premuzic, 2013) And, according to some researchers and business leaders “emotional intelligence is one of the more under-rated business skills that need to be given more attention.” (Chen, 2013)

Daniel Goleman, a thought leader on the subject of emotional intelligence, refers to EQ as “the capacity for recognizing our own feelings and those of others, for motivating ourselves, and for managing emotions well in ourselves and our relationships.” Motivation, awareness of and managing our feelings (emotions), developing effective interpersonal relationships, the ability to effectively express ourselves and enhancing our empathy for others are all domains within the context of emotional intelligence.

“Breakthroughs in brain research also show how leaders’ moods and actions have enormous impact on those they lead. A leader’s emotions can either energize or deflate an entire organization. Strong leaders make people feel good in bad times by helping them deal with negative emotions and by nourishing their positive ones so they can do what they have to do.
(Emotional Intelligence, Goleman)

A leader’s mood has the ability to inspire, arouse passion and enthusiasm and to keep people motivated and committed. Leaders who possess high levels of EI are adept at inducing desirable responses in others and are able to capture the “discretionary energy” of employees, which can impact the organization’s performance as measured by revenues and profits.

“Emotional leadership is the spark that ignites a company’s performance, creating a bonfire of success or a landscape of ashes.” (Primal Leadership, Goleman). Research has shown that a critical mass of EI capabilities has significant benefits to the bottom line by as much as 28%.
There is no question, then, that there is a link between a company’s success and the emotional intelligence of it leaders. (Grossman, 2005)

In another study reported in the “Business Case for Emotional Intelligence”, researchers looked at which of three competencies best predict leadership performance. While intellectual competence indicated a 9.2% predictability of leadership performance, and managerial skills and knowledge showed a 10.4% predictability score, emotional intelligence indicated a 13% score of predictability of leadership performance.

An article in the online blog Six Seconds summarizes the importance of emotional intelligence to leaders in this way: “Leadership is a ‘people business’ and emotional intelligence is the missing link. EI helps leaders know themselves and use their own strengths — and work with and through people effectively.” It continues that “Higher EI Leaders are more likely to make better decisions, engage and influence more effectively, and create the right mood for the job.” And Jack Welch, former CEO and Chairman of General Electric posits “No doubt, emotional intelligence (EI) is more rare than book smarts… but my experience says it is actually more important in the making of a leader. You just can’t ignore it.” (Wall Street Journal, the Four E’s, January 23, 2004).

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The Negative Power of Emotions

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Most people’s lives are driven by their feelings. You feel hungry and you eat. You feel that you want a little more and you eat a little more. You feel that some ice cream or cookies would be the best dessert… so you ‘indulge’ (even though you have to follow it up with 1000 mg of Metformin, or worse – some insulin – because of your diabetes).

And I know and you know that the stomach is not the only place where our feelings dictate what we do. You are a married, internationally powerful leader and you feel that you should ‘indulge’ yourself with an intern. And, you do! You are rich, but you feel that you are not rich enough so you ‘indulge’ in some illegal investment activities. You a White policeman and you ‘feel’ differently (negatively) about Black people than you feel about White people, so when push comes to shove, you let all your ‘hidden’ feelings drive your actions.

So what should you do if you find that your feelings are controlling your life (and you don’t want them to)?

Stop living by your feelings. Stop letting your feelings drive what you do daily. Stop letting your feelings dictate your interactions with others.

Stop following your feelings until those feelings are insync with your decisions, your values and your life’s mission. But here is the problem with that statement… your decisions are probably driven by your feelings. Yes, your feelings are probably the hidden (and not so hidden) drivers behind your thoughts, beliefs, decisions – and definitely your actions.

Some writers have called this the “think, feel, do” cycle. I call it the “feel, think, do” cycle… and the “feel, do, think about it after the fact” cycle.

Most things that we do don’t go in the order of: “Let me see… what should I do? OK, I will do this and that… and then after that I will do so and so… etc.) Nope. Most people feel a particular way about something, this then drives their thoughts… and their actions follow quickly thereafter.

For example, you are driving on a neighborhood street and someone cuts in front of you just barely missing hitting your car. Do you say to yourself, “How should I respond to this person?” Nope. Instead, you probably think – “That idiot, what the hell is he doing? He could have killed me!” And, that’s the tame version of what you might say, not only to yourself but out loud. You might not even say anything! Instead, you might speed up right under his bumper, wait until you both get to the next red light… pull up by his side, roll down your window and blast him – verbally of course (although your preference at that moment would be to use some other instrument other than your mouth to do the blasting)!

At that point, what is in control of your actions? Is it your cognitive self (rationally thinking and deciding on how to act)? Or is it your emotional self… driven by your out of control feelings? Of course, through all of this, there is no part of your rational, cognitive self, saying to itself… “I shouldn’t…” You might even hesitate because your 8 year old is in the car, or because there are four burly, ‘hooded’ and ‘tattooed’ guys in the car glaring back at you.

So even if you hesitate, your ‘rational’ brain tells you, “I have a right to be pissed! That so and so…” In other words… there is no part of you that questions your feelings… or your right to feel the way you do. And even worse, there is no part of you that challenges your follow-up actions (because you have a right to be angry). So, your feelings have carte blanche control of all other aspects of your ‘self’ (thoughts, other feelings, behaviors and actions). And to add to this misery, each time you think about this even (even five years later), those same thoughts, feelings and the drive to act in a certain way, resurface in full blown mode all over again!

It doesn’t matter if you are a nun, priest, monk, police, lawyer, teacher, addict, retired judge, or octogenarian. Your feelings probably have almost total control of you.

So… what do you do?

Keep reading this blog!

How to disable, diminish, neutralize the power of your feelings/emotions to totally control your life in ways that put you at risk is the subject of a forthcoming book and several forthcoming articles on this site.



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Statistics on Depression

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Depression is common mental condition and these days people seem to be suffering from depression because of their stressful lifestyles. Depression not only affects the person who is suffering from depression but also affects their family members. The overall effects of depression are huge. The statistics on depression support this.

According to statistics on depression, it is second most serious, uncontrollable and costly health issue in the world. Still, most people who are suffering from depression are not seeking the treatment they need. Though depression is treatable with proper prescribed medication and psychotherapy, many people don’t seek treatment due to lack of awareness of the help that is available or because of the stigma of mental illness within most societies. Based on the statistics on depression identified by the World Health Organization (WHO), it is clear that around the world, depression seems to be growing everyday. It has become a very serious issue.

Statistics on depression from the World Health Organisation identifies it as the fourth most deadly contributor to the global health diseases and a significant cause of health related disability. WHO declared that by the year 2020 it will be the second highest cause of diseases around the world. According to one study which cited statistics on depression,  121 million people in world are suffering from this disease, and each year hundreds of thousands of people around the world commit suicide due to severe depression.

Here are some general statistics on depression:

  • 121 million people are suffering from depression.
  • Among 25% people seek treatment.
  • After age of 18 yrs, seven persons out of hundred suffer from depression at any stage of their life.
  • One of every 33 children and one of every eight adults suffer from clinical depression.
  • Many people notice their depression in their late thirties.
  • 10% of the 6 million people who are suffering from late life depression receive proper treatment.
  • Experts believe that 80% of people who are suffering from clinical depression are not diagnosed and treated.
  • The world economy also suffers from the cause of depression.  One study indicates that more than $51 million loss is due to lower productivity which is a direct result of depression.
  • Still many people take depression as personal weakness and don’t seek treatment.
  • Most communities around the world (in both developed, developing and emerging countries) place a stigma on mental health disorders including depression.

Though depression is a complex disease, 80 to 90% people get relief if they get proper guidance and treatment. So awareness among people about depression and its effects is very necessary.

For resources on depression, go here.

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Get Help

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Get help if you suffer from the type of mental problems that triggers feelings that life is not worth living.
The first thing that you should understand is that you are not alone and with the right help and professional intervention you can enjoy the feeling that you can make it.

You are also not alone in the fact that everyday hundreds of thousands of people – maybe even millions of people – around the world struggle with mental disorders such as depression and anxiety. Most of these people find ways to at least cope while many others find ways to be successful in the lives that they choose to live.

One of the reasons that many people don’t get help is because there is a stigma attached to mental disorders in their culture. As a result, they and their families hide their mental problems behind closed doors. In many countries – including the so-called developed countries – many families have been known to lock away and secrete from the world family members who exhibit mental problems. These people suffer a long and miserable life of agony in an age where help is just a phone call away or a visit to the local clinic. As a matter of fact, people can get help just by going on the internet and finding natural solutions to some disorders.

In some unsophisticated communities, those who suffer from disorders like depression, grief, trauma, phobias or anxiety can also get help by talking with wise elders and community healers who have apothecaries of natural medicines that can help with some mild forms of these mental disorders. Modern trained clinicians and doctors – even those whose origins are from indigenous communities – tend to dismiss the healing and therapeutic power of natural forms of healing. Their modern ‘first world’ based on their ‘modern’ ‘scientific’ medical training has all but washed their brains of the centuries old healing powers of natural forms of healing. Thus, many of them warn potential clients that they should not get help from shamans, ‘witch doctors’, and other types of natural healers.
They even suggest that sufferers should not get help using medical approaches such as alternative medicines such as hypnosis, NLP, homeopathy, acupuncture, aromatherapy, naturopathy, Reflexology, Shiatsu, Ayurvedic medicine, or energy therapy.

Clearly, evidence abounds that some of these approaches to healing work well for some people in some situations. The truth is that also in many cases, these approaches work better, with less side effects and potentially less harm than many of the Western vaulted, high price medications many of which have murky reputations among patients.

For the persons who suffer from mental disorders, they should get help anyway that they can. They should monitor their responses to any intervention – whether mainstream or traditional.

Bottom line… Get help now!

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