Saturday, May 22, 2010

Emotional intelligence and its relationship to transformational leadership

The May, 2010 of the "IE Update" Newsletter provides the following abstract of a research study on Emotional Intelligence. The study refers to the "MSCEIT" one of the instruments that Keogh & Associates Consulting, LLC uses in our approach to team and leadership development.

Clarke, N. (2010). Emotional intelligence and its relationship to transformational leadership and key project manager competences. Project Management Journal, 41(2), 5-20.

This study examined the effect of Emotional Iintelligence, as assessed using MSCEIT, on several competences (i.e., communication, teamwork, attentiveness, and managing conflict) and transformational leadership after controlling for personality and cognitive ability. Results based on a sample of 67 UK project managers revealed a number of significant correlations between the MSCEIT and the dependent measures. Branch 2 of the MSCEIT (using emotions to facilitate thinking), Branch 3 (understanding emotions), and the overall EI score were all found to positively correlate with the project manager competence of managing conflict. Both the abilities of using emotions and of understanding emotions positively correlated with the project manager competence of teamwork. Using emotions to facilitate thinking was the only EI ability found to have any significant correlations with transformational leadership. Both total EI and branch scores showed minor correlations with personality measures, offering further support for the predominantly independent nature of these two aspects of individual difference.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A strategic approach to Talent Management

According to Michael Fineman and Jodi Starkman of ORC worldwide, the most important thing a company can do to ensure a continuing supply of well-prepared, well-deployed key players is to create a talent culture: an environment in which finding and nurturing talent is considered an important management function.

Fineman and Starkman identify seven essential elements for building a talent culture. They lay the groundwork for translating business strategy to people strategy, create a common understanding of process and vocabulary, and provide the tools managers need to help them implement a coherent, aggressive talent management plan.

  1. Deep involvement of senior management
  2. Dedication of sufficient time, staff and IT support
  3. Breadth and depth of talent reviews.
  4. Consistency and Structure.
  5. Meaningful Developmental Experiences
  6. Motivation and Retention
  7. Monitoring the TM Program

Expatriates are not a dying breed

From an article by Sanchia Temkin:

"Expatriates are not a dying breed.. They are still very much part of the business strategies of many companies seeking to expand their activities beyond their homes bases," said Siobhan Cummins, MD for Europe, the Middle East and Africa of ORC Worldwide."

However, expatriate assignments are changing, with assignments lasting only one to three years, instead of much longer, which used to be the norm. Another change is that companies are paring down the assignment package, and are no longer paying large tax-free gratuities upon the completion of an assignment."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Light in the darkness of the soul

Viktor E. Frankl was Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at the University of Vienna Medical School and Distinguished Professor of Logotherapy at the U.S. International University. He is the founder of what has come to be called the Third Viennese School of Psychotherapy (after Freud's psychoanalysis and Adler's individual psychology) -- the school of “logotherapy.”

Born in 1905, Dr. Frankl received the degrees of Doctor of Medicine and Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Vienna. During World War II he spent three years at Auschwitz, Dachau and other concentration camps. He died in 1997.

His book "Man's search for meaning" where he describes his ordeal in the concentration camp is a marvelous and uplifting read.

 I’ve just come across a short video snippet of one of his lectures. It lasts four minutes. You can see it here. Dr. Frankl in his charming accent basically says: “If we take man as he is, we'll make him worse. But if we take man as he should be we make him capable of becoming what he can be".  A beautiful and relevant lesson.

The ancients knew well there is indeed light in the darkness of the soul. To get to the truest nature of a human being we have to aim very high. Dr. Frankl suggests that being an idealist is the only way to be a realist.