[Program Customization | The Keynote | Slide 3 | Assessment | Sample Questions | Coaching Fundamentals | Coaching Tools | Anxiety Management |
Manager Meetings | Predictors of Coaching Success | Exercises for Building EQ Skills | On Marketing & Selling | The Virtual EQ Program ]
I have purposely provided lots of details in this manual. You can follow much of it as is, in order to add clarity and save yourself from re-inventing the wheel.
However, you don’t have to do the program exactly as written. Many if not most readers will want to change or customize the program to make it their own, to reflect their personality and creativity. You can make changes to various files on the accompanying FLASHDRIVE. For example, you can download the outline for the keynote workshop from the FLASHDRIVE to your computer and then edit the outline to suit yourself and your audience.
To ensure success, remember program principle one—begin with the end in mind. Know what you are trying to accomplish with the keynote. In most cases, the keynote is the first step in the program for participants. Your goal is to win the minds and hearts of the participants to your program.
Slide 3: Conceptually, EQ can be defined as those skills that people use to manage their own emotions wisely, i.e., use emotions to help them achieve their goals and to manage their interactions with others in ways that maximize the chances of influencing others constructively.
Leaders with high EQ have been shown to add as much as 127% more value to the bottom line of their organization than average leaders. Not compared to bad leaders—but compared to leaders who perform at an average or acceptable level.
Today we will talk about how EQ can be useful to you in your challenging roles and help you know how to use it.
Many programs that claim to build EQ take every participant through a pre-established process that may or may not speak to the participant’s most important needs. For example, some organizations ask all of their leaders to go to a workshop to help them build Empathy skills. Indeed, Empathy is important. But it is not a top need for every leader. Some leadership situations may call for skills in Assertiveness, or Stress Tolerance, or Optimism even more than Empathy. Further, even when it matters, some leaders may already be quite skilled in Empathy. It is a waste of their time and the organization’s money for these participants to study Empathy—not to mention the cost of the lost opportunity for training that could be helpful.
Much of the strength and effectiveness of The EQ Leader Program 2.0 rests on its approach to assessment and feedback. These processes provide you and your clients with the information needed to craft an individualized coaching program with precision. Further, they provide you with opportunities to build the kind of coaching relationship needed to effect behavior change.
In The EQ Leader Program 2.0, each person gets a program tailored to his or her individual needs. To create such a program, we must find out what each person’s current EQ strengths and weaknesses are as well as the specific challenges that each participant faces. You will see that the assessment process is designed to get you, and the participants, information needed to create exactly the right program for them.
Sample Questions from EQ/Leadership Interview
- What would you like to get out of this EQ assessment process? What would make this worth your time?
- What is the best thing about the team or group you lead?
- What problem would you most like to solve in your team or group?
- What emotion(s) are you feeling right now? How could you tell that was the emotion that you were experiencing? (Emotional Self Awareness)
- Tell me about a time you gave a direct report feedback about their performance. (Emotional Expression)
- Who do you turn to for comfort and support? What makes you pick them?
The Coaching Relationship: The sales process, workshop, and assessment have all been done in the service of building relationships, the most important thing you can do as a coach. The research literature is clear that even though there are many different coaching models and approaches, the most powerful factor in coaching outcome is the quality of the relationship between coach and client.
What is a good coaching relationship? It is a relationship that creates sufficient safety that the client can engage in self-reflection, constructive self-criticism, and self-appreciation. It is a relationship that leads to realistic plans for self-development (change) and supports the flexible execution of that change. It is a relationship that includes warmth but not ownership on the part of the coach. We don’t own the client’s problems, and we don’t own the client. It is a relationship with sufficient trust that the coach can “tell truth to power,” since our clients are typically powerful individuals.
Coaching Topics (Boundaries): Another element of boundaries has to do with the content of coaching discussions. The organization is paying you to enhance work performance. It is not paying you to improve the client’s marriage or to resolve old issues from childhood. However, that doesn’t mean that such topics are entirely off limits. The whole person goes to work, and therefore these issues go to work as well.
With regard to current-life personal relationships, such as a marriage, your clients may well have similar issues with, say, Empathy in their personal and business lives. Some clients have found it helpful to talk about a challenging discussion at home, which becomes a pathway to discussing how the same issues may be at play at work. Sometimes the connection is not immediately clear. I’ve had many coaching sessions in which we might have spent twenty or thirty minutes “off task.” But then the connection has dawned on me. Then I can connect the dots for my client. We might then spend just ten minutes on the work element, but would never have gotten there without the prelude.
#2 Homework: I love coaching sessions. I get to connect in a meaningful way with another human being. I have an opportunity to hear someone’s story, which I always find fascinating. I get to share insights and thoughts acquired over a lifetime of learning my craft. I get to see clients get excited about new ideas and develop hope through new learning. But as fascinating as I find coaching sessions to be, I also know that no one’s behavior will change in a sustainable way through our meetings alone. We are catalysts, not solution providers. We set conditions within which clients can create the change that they need.
Client change takes place largely in our clients’ real world, where they work and where they live. One of our key jobs as coaches is to provide clients with ways of practicing and developing skills they have not yet developed to the level needed to manage the challenges that they now face.
This is why this manual has 16 sets of exercises (186 exercises divided into a section for each of the sixteen EQ skills measured by the EQ-i 2.0.) Suppose you have a client working on building Empathy. During coaching meetings, you and your client can look over the Empathy exercises to see which one(s) might be useful at their current state of development.
Or you might make up an exercise “on the fly,” customized to your client’s situation. Becoming increasingly familiar with the exercises in this manual will give you seeds for your own additional ideas. I’ve also had clients come up with exercises on their own at times, often better than what I might have come up with. (Remember the Co-Discovery model!)
#10 Anxiety Management: “Everyone with a working brain has anxiety. The only question is how we manage it.”
You can’t believe how reassuring those few words are to clients. For many, anxiety is viewed as a weakness, and something to be avoided at all costs. As a result, too many people get drug addicted, alcohol addicted, work addicted, sex addicted, etc. When anxiety is normalized for clients, they become better able to accept it in themselves (and others), manage anxiety effectively, and use it for good purpose. I find that it helps to link anxiety to the amygdala. Sometimes anxiety is warning us about real danger, and sometimes it is over-estimating the threat.
It helps to teach clients the anxiety curve (often called the stress curve).
#25 Manager Meetings: Periodic meetings with your clients and their managers can have great value. Among other things, ensuring that the coaching goals that you and your clients have established align with what their managers want protects everyone – clients, managers, the company, and you. That doesn’t mean you can’t attend to issues not on the manager’s radar, but you and your client had better attend to issues that are. Further, my clients often tell me that these manager meetings produce far more useful feedback than any other meetings they have had with their managers. The coach can facilitate communication at a much deeper level than commonly occurs.
The structure I have found useful for manager meetings has three parts . . .
Predictors of Coaching Success:
Three EQ skills seem to be highly related to whether a coaching client is likely to have a successful coaching experience, defined as achieving sustainable, meaningful behavior change. Don’t assume that a low score on any or all of these scales means inevitable coaching failure. Instead, recognize that this client may struggle more than others. Help this person build the skill(s) in question. That said, coaching may become more of an uphill battle.
Exercises for Building EQ Skills:
This section holds the menus of exercises that you can use with your clients to help them build various EQ skills. They have been referenced in various sections leading up to this one, including Assessment, Debrief, the Ten Step Planning Process, and in some of the Coaching Tools.
The end of the Debrief Meeting is an excellent time to introduce the exercises. Near the end of that meeting, I’ll typically say something like: “By the time we finish our meeting today, it would be good to identify one, two, or three EQ skills that you would like to improve. I have menus of exercises for each EQ skill. Later today, I’ll email you those exercises that go with the skills you want to improve.” Clients are almost universally delighted to have something concrete to get them started.
The exercise menus can be found on your flash drive.
Sample EQ Skill Building Exercises (of 186 exercises):
Building Self Regard Exercise 4
List your strengths, such as loyalty, sense of humor, hard work, honesty. Review
your EQ-i® report for ideas but do not be limited to just those issues.
Review this list every day. Add items to it. It may surprise you, but you will think of more items over time as you practice this exercise. The reason is that you are changing your focus from negatives to positives. The more open you become to your positives, the more you will be able to see them.
Every day, record at least one event that illustrates one of these strengths. The events do not (!) have to be major, i.e., “Today, I made Mrs. Smith laugh” would be a fine entry for reminding you of your sense of humor.
Building Emotional Self Awareness Exercise 5
Use your notebook to record body reactions, such as clenched fists, accelerated heart beat, faster breathing, stinging eyes, perspiring, and speeding up or slowing down your stride. Often your body knows your emotion before your mind does. Ask yourself what message your body is sending you. Do this on a daily basis. Systematic self-exploration is usually necessary to get true understanding of your patterns.
Building Assertiveness Exercise 1
Identify two or three people whom you believe to be assertive. Describe the behaviors that you have labeled as assertive. What do those behaviors have in common?
This exercise will help you define assertiveness and help you identify role models. Don’t confuse assertiveness with aggressiveness. You can tell the difference by how people usually respond to your role model candidate. If they seem to feel safe, your role-model is probably behaving assertively. If they respond with fear, anger, or resentment, find another role-model.
On Marketing and Selling
Marketing: . . . With regard to marketing, many coaches dislike blowing their own horns. But letting people know about something that might be useful to them, and doing so by using language that helps them recognize possibilities, is not blowing your own horn. Are you a good coach? How can people know unless you find a way to tell them? This isn’t manipulation. It is helping potential decision makers understand what they will get if they hire you.
I’m reminded of a number of executives I’ve worked with who thought they should get promoted. They had done good work and expected the work to speak for itself. The only problem was that those who decided on their promotions were busy. They often didn’t know about the good work that person had done. Part of my coaching was to help the client figure out how to let superiors know about their work. They had to market themselves in ways appropriate to the culture of their organization . . .
. . . It helps to think about marketing as education. This education is a two part process. First, we need to educate ourselves about the wants and needs of potential customers. Second, we need to educate potential customers about the fact that we have some of what they want and need. (As Stephen Covey wrote, “Seek first to understand, only then to be understood.”) . . .
Selling: . . . You may hate the idea of a sales call, but I’ll bet you love having conversations. In fact, you probably make your living that way. So think about sales meetings not as sales meetings per se, but rather as the opportunity to have conversations with interesting people. The people you will meet are intelligent, successful, and have interesting, perhaps fascinating businesses that they are going to let you learn something about. So go have some conversations. Bring the emotion of curiosity with you. Listen more than you talk. Have enough of such conversations, and sales will follow . . .
The Virtual EQ Leader Program
As we were in the midst of making The EQ Leader Program into The EQ Leader Program 2.0, the Corona Virus hit. Suddenly, everyone began working from home. A natural question arises: Can The EQ Leader Program 2.0 be done virtually? The short answer is yes. Now let’s walk through the details . . .