Monday, June 21, 2010

Emotional Resilience: with emotion

One of the areas I have been focussing on both in terms of work and research (there is another book on the way) is emotional resilience (we run The Fear Course in many UK universities). One of the most common misperception about emotional resilience is that it means people are able to do things like make decisions, deal with situations without emotion.
Cutting off from your emotions is not a useful trait, in fact it can cause many problems especially in leadership and management situations. Our perception of situations is as much the ability to be able to feel a situation as well as think about it. Our emotions and thinking operate together to give us a fuller sense of a situation and importantly for managers and leaders operate with empathy as well as ethically and morally in any situation.
Additionally an individual without emotion would have a sever problem with logic or reason. Reasoning requires a level of understanding of emotions.

More on this soon.

Saturday, June 19, 2010


Whilst coaching a client in the city this week, he made a comment that made me think. He was trying to solve an ambiguous dilemma, so I did what I thought all good coaches would do. Get the client to look at the problem from a whole series of different perspectives and to unpack their current problem solving approach on a non-agenda driven basis (from me).
Anyway at the end of the session the client said he had never had such a thought provoking 'workout'.
Now I don't say this for purposes of self-aggrandizement or self promotion. The issue is that the client has a regular coach (I coach for ambiguous and high emotional impact situations). It would appear that his regular coach moves him into a solution in what sounds like an 'I know best, this is what you should be doing', mentoring style approach.
So I did some checking with other clients who have coaches and it would appear that this is a very frequent approach taken by a number of performance coaches. One client sounded a little surprised at my questioning and said "Of course my coach facilitates me to the right solution, we pay them to give us good advice".

I have seen similar approaches in workshops where participants are 'facilitated' to the 'right' answer according to the trainers.

"Facipulation (v) - Using the tools and techniques of facilitation to manipulate a pre-existing and known outcome or solution in the mind of the 'facipulator' in a way that makes it look and feel like the 'facipulated' constructed their own answer."