Students Need Real Emotional Skills

Too many college students face challenges for which they are emotionally ill-equipped to handle. By mid-autumn when students get their first real feedback on their academic performance, is when college counselors see the first big spike in anxiety. And in general, anxiety on college campuses is on the rise. Why? There’s a lot more going on for students than buying books, writing papers, playing sports, and pledging fraternities and sororities.

A 2013 survey from the American College Health Association of over 123,000 students across 153 campuses confirmed that over half of students feel overwhelming anxiety, and about a third experience intense depression, sometime during the year.  Almost a third report that their stress has been high enough at some point to interfere with their academics—lowering their grades on exams or courses or projects—and 44% say that academic or career issues have been traumatic or difficult to handle. The majority of college students don’t get enough sleep, and half say that they’ve felt overwhelmed and exhausted, lonely or sad sometime during the year.

College Students Group_for web

Students need real emotional skills. There is a large and growing body of research that suggests that the skills of emotional intelligence—the ability to reason with and about emotions to achieve goals—are correlated with positive outcomes across the entire age spectrum, from preschool through adulthood. Emotions affect learning, decision-making, creativity, relationships, and health, and people with more developed emotion skills do better. Among college students, skills of emotional intelligence are linked to engaging in fewer risky behaviors whereas self-esteem is not.

When college students are aware of what they’re feeling, they can make conscious decisions about how to manage those emotions, rather than escalate, act out, or medicate. When they identify emotional patterns and clearly see preceding triggers, they can employ strategies to manage the things that “set them off.” When students are anxious and pressured, they can use strategies to calm themselves and proceed on tasks with lowered anxiety. When they are more masterful at reading others’ cues, they’ll be better able to resolve interpersonal conflicts. They might not be able to solve the problem, but they can have empathy for the other person, de-escalate, and take care of themselves.

Imagine trying to solve complex mathematical problems without the tools of algebra or calculus. Emotions are constantly at play—you’re probably having some right now—but every day we ask our children, ourselves, and each other to solve complex emotional problems with few real tools. An ongoing education in emotions from preschool through college, based on the emerging field of emotion intelligence, will go a long way toward equipping our youth for adulthood—and easing the journey along the way.

Posted in Coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Generations

Top CIO Leadership Skills Include Emotional Intelligence

IT is experiencing a historic period of “profound change,” according to the preliminary results of “35th Annual SIM IT Trends Study,” published recently by the The Society for Information Management. The SIM IT trends survey is based on the responses of 1,002 IT managers and leaders at 717 organizations. Of the respondents, 451 are CIOs. The organizations’ average annual revenue is $5.6 billion, with an average IT budget of $288 million.

Three trends highlighted by the survey underscore the importance for CIO’s to impact business oriented performance measures, develop their people leadership skills and invest in employee training & development. The study’s lead researcher Leon Kappleman says, “IT organizations are not focusing on cost cutting like they used to be, but instead their focus today is on how to create value for the business.”

IT Focuses More on the Business, Less on Internal Services
The concept of IT in the enterprise is in a period of transition, as IT for many organizations today is less about directly providing internal services and more about driving the business and contributing to business strategy. Of the top 10 performance measures for CIOs, the top four (value of IT to the business, IT’s contribution to strategy, customer satisfaction, and innovative new ideas) are business oriented, not IT oriented. Performance measures five through seven are IT oriented (availability, projects delivered on time, and IT cost controls), but the rest of the top 10 fall in the business category (productivity improvement, business cost reduction controls and revenue growth). In summary, seven of the top 10 performance measures for CIOs relate to business, not IT.

Top Leadership Skills Are People Skills
When asked to name the top 10 skills for CIO success, the respondents overwhelmingly named people skills, not technical know-how, as being most vital. Note that “emotional intelligence,” for example, grabs the number seven spot in the below list.  The leading 10 skills for CIO success are:

  1. Provide leadership (35%)Wordle-2
  2. People management (30%)
  3. Strategic planning (24%)
  4. Decision making (24%)
  5. Verbal communication (21%)
  6. Collaboration (21%)
  7. Emotional Intelligence (16%)
  8. Honesty (16%)
  9. Business analysis (12%)
  10. Change management (12%)

IT Talent Comes, IT Talent Goes
In an effort to retain their IT talent, CIOs have increased their spending on employee training and education for the second consecutive year, with a slight bump to 4.99 percent in 2014 from 4.68 percent in 2013. This spending is justified in view of the “very high turnover in IT,” said Kappelman, who pointed out the employee turnover rate among the respondents was 8.97 percent in 2014, which is significantly higher than the 10-year average employee turnover rate of 6.26 percent. Overall, CIOs themselves enjoyed a slight increase in job tenure, from an average of 5.20 years in 2013 to 5.41 years in 2014.

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Posted in Emotional Intelligence, Leadership

Success is Sometimes Boring

Success – few words stir up in people the variety of emotions and definitions.  For some it’s elusive and not easily attained.  For others it’s clear and linear.  And for others still, it’s not even important.  Whatever meaning you attach, success is sometimes boring.boring

Would you agree there is no overnight success?  If so, that’s because we both realize the work, effort and commitment required to accomplish anything meaningful.  If you’re a Sales Professional with revenue goals, an HR leader with hiring or retention goals, or an Executive with profitability goals, your success is due in great measure to defining your goals.  Yet sometimes people get caught up in defining long-term goals and lose sight of what’s necessary to do each day.  Our success comes from adopting steps and processes, that when repeated every day, will deliver the results we want.

Consider these two questions.  On a scale of 1-10, how successful are you and how satisfied are you with your level of production?   If you’re like most people, neither question scored a 10.  So what keeps you from answering with a 10 and what would a 10 look like in your performance – your production?  As you reflect, consider what it takes to make each day a 10.  I’m confident you’ll find it requires you to perform tedious, even boring tasks without immediate reward or recognition.  That’s what successful people do!

Question:  What boring tasks do you regularly perform that has contributed to your success?

Posted in Career, Commitment, Motivation, Personal Renewal

Emotional Intelligence & The EQi 2.0

What is EI? As the EQ-i 2.0 measures emotional intelligence (EI), it’s important to consider what EI is, what it measures, and how is can impact people and the workplace.

Defining EI  Emotional intelligence is defined as “a set of emotional and social skills that influence the way we perceive and express ourselves, develop and maintain social relationships, cope with challenges, and use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way.” Emotional intelligence (EI) as defined here and applied in the Emotional Quotient Inventory (EQ-i 2.0) reflects one’s overall wellbeing and ability to succeed in life.

EQi 2.0 logo

Employee Development The EQ-i 2.0 measures the interaction between a person and the environment he/she operates in. Assessing and evaluating an individual’s emotional intelligence can help establish the need for targeted development programs and measures. This, in turn, can lead to dramatic increases in the person’s performance, interaction with others, and leadership potential. The development potentials the EQ-i 2.0 identifies, along with the targeted strategies it provides, make it a highly effective employee development tool.

Recruitment and Retention The EQ-i 2.0 is versatile in workplace environments and can be used by employers — via HR and OD consultants, psychologists, or EQ-i 2.0 certified professionals — as a screening tool in hiring, leading to the selection of emotionally intelligent, emotionally healthy, and the most-likely successful employees. Supplemented by other sources of information, such as interviews, the EQ-i 2.0 can make the recruitment and selection process more reliable and efficient. A sound recruiting process leads to higher retention rates and reduced turnover which can result in significant cost savings, improved employee effectiveness and increased morale.

For complete information about the EQi 2.0 and EQ 360 Assessments and reports, contact Tom Schreiber at 913-568-2111 or

Posted in Uncategorized

What do you admire most in a leader?

Posted in Engagement, Leadership, Relationships

Burgers Don’t Sell Themselves

Chances are you have a favorite product or brand… for a variety of reasons as well. Maybe it’s the convenience, or the taste, the design, the cause, or the culture. Above all else, what makes the products and brands we love come to life is the people.

HamburgerAndFriesThis is what Junior Bridgeman banked on when he bought 5 Milwaukee-area Wendy’s in 1987. Bridgeman may be known to some as one of the NBA’s best 6th men – the guy who doesn’t start but comes off the bench and makes an impact night after night. He’s also the player (along with three others) who the Milwaukee Bucks traded to the LA Lakers for Kareem Adbul-Jabaar.

Today Bridgeman’s restaurant portfolio contains over 240 stores and he is Wendy’s second largest Franchisee with 195 locations. He credits two leadership characteristics that set him apart and helped him succeed. The first was his recognition that burgers don’t sell themselves – it was up to people to sell them. So he hired better workers and empowered them. “What I tried to do was to get everybody to understand that we were a team,” he says. “We worked together as a team, we win as a team, and we lose as a team. Once everybody bought in and believed that we could be successful, it was amazing how quickly things started to improve.” The second was his approach to how he treated his people. Once hired, Bridgeman began investing in them as people, helping some make rent and bailing others out of jail. Once they saw how much he cared they worked harder for him.

A team orientation combined with caring leadership will work in any business. This is not a chicken or egg equation. It all starts with leadership! You know the leaders who you admired so much you didn’t want to let them down. More often than not, it wasn’t due to their technical expertise, their salesmanship or financial acumen. It was because you felt they cared about you and wanted you to be successful.

What boss or leader do you admire most and why?

Posted in Engagement, Leadership, Uncategorized

Boomers: ‘We want to work in retirement’

Click here to read article that states 72% of people over 50 said yes


Posted in Career, Generations
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