Thanksgiving, 1999

A year ever means multiple experiences and insights, — or as I like to consider them, “bridges” — in learning and growing. I truly hope that yours have been mostly satisfying and enriching this year.

A significant bridge for me has been the opportunity to learn more about emotional intelligence (E I) and its importance to my executive coaching work. In guiding CEOs and other leaders, E I has become a bridge to greater clarity for them in making choices. And, I love to help them combine their individualized expression of creativity with the opportunity to be courageous in the statement of their choices.

Another reason that E I is so exciting to me is because it aligns so specifically with my own definition of leaders — those who influence growth and change in others by living their courage in via action. (I think of courage as a French term for the passionate statement of one’s heart!)

It was a highlight for me to talk at a recent conference with Dan Goleman (author of “Working With Emotional Intelligence”) about the helpfulness of the 360 degree tool called Emotional Competence Inventory or ECI—based on his work— that I’ve been using with my clients. It’s become a way for my clients to use “hard” data to understand their “soft” skills. As a result, they recognize that the initial step in the process of applying E I is the critical need for self-awareness. This new perspective has been especially powerful toward helping them better understand their relationships with others.

Know thyself—advice from the ancients is ever fresh and challenging! (Dan commented that it’s the most underrated part of E I.)

There are two primary reasons why that leaders fail, according to related research by the Hay/McBer Group who developed the ECI referenced above. They are two “R’s”: first, rigidity, or lack of willingness to change; and second, poor relationships as a result of being too critical, manipulative, insensitive, and untrustworthy. E I is an answer to each of these limitations.

So, as we struggle to bridge the constant external expectations of others with our quiet internal priorities, may we all be grateful this holiday season for the opportunity to honor our own non-cognitive or emotional power that is ever available as our guide.

Happy Holidays,

Beryl B. Byles
Executive Coach

Beryl B. Byles | Executive Coach | 43 Sawgrass Lane | Newtown Square, PA 19073 | phone 610-353-6545 | fax 610-353-5179