Our approach is based on science and experience.
In business, emotions always received secondary treatment to the intellect. Today, we know EQ is essential for business success, especially in a digitized world where trust can be so fragile. The problem is that dealing with emotions is infinitely complex. That’s the real reason it’s been avoided, and why it’s so valuable for organizational leaders to know how to deal with them effectively.
Theory and Science
Learning to focus and not dissipate energy is critical for professional effectiveness. But what helps people reach through procrastination and obsessive distractions?
The contemporary approach to focus is mindfulness and energy management. We offer world-class programs in these important techniques. That covers half the battle. Techniques allow the mind to rest and come back rejuvenated, or help structure daily routine in more efficient ways. But developmental methodologies like executive coaching help to unravel the deeper emotional impasses which fuel distractions in the first place, making the need for techniques less urgent.
Stages of Development
Leadership is a developmental issue. How does one develop into a good leader, a good role model, a good human being that people can look up to and trust?
The healthy leader, in Erik Erikson’s classic developmental model, is someone who integrates each developmental stage into growth, and how they experience themselves in relation to others. There is no magic pill or short-cut to getting there. Instead, you have to take a step-by-step process of challenging and growing. That’s what life is—growing and not avoiding, meeting challenges in constructive ways, and focusing on realistic steps so growth doesn't lead to burnout, or derail.
Can introverted leaders improve their presence, and learn to engage people with emotional energy and not just their intellect? Can extroverted leaders improve their discipline, and learn to drive results with organized focus, and not just charisma and improvisation?
Personality was once considered immutable. Then 30 years of psychiatric research into personality debunked this antiquated notion. Now we know traits can change over time, and are responsive to strong environmental influences, including leadership. These findings align with Erik Erikson's classic developmental model, which is the only model that describes how people can continue to grow throughout life.
How do teams and organizations work effectively? How does one define good leadership? Organizational psychology has built nearly a century of psychosocial research attempting to answer these questions.
Kurt Lewin pioneered the process in his attempt to differentiate leadership styles: Do you force-feed people coercively, or do you allow people to have a voice in the process? Contemporary approaches emphasize the value of psychological safety, which results from a balance of healthy structure and open communication. This balance requires constant monitoring as human nature is unstable and does not maintain a status quo for long.
Neuroscience of Leadership
Why do people overreact to constructive feedback, and how can managers sidestep defensiveness? Under what conditions do performance reviews trigger fear responses in the brain that prevent anything useful from happening? How does the attempt to create a respectful environment in teams backfire into political correctness and groupthink?
Neuroscience empowers leaders with specialized knowledge to better predict and influence behavioral outcomes. Landmark findings in brain science help skeptical leaders see the business relevance of “soft” power, and how managing emotions intelligently drives productivity, reduces errors, and prevents disasters.