Coaching World Issue 7: August 2013 - Page 42

awareness is by showing them how they’re seen by others. Soliciting direct feedback is one way to gather this information; this is how Jan learned about clients’ negative perceptions. A 360-degreefeedback assessment can also be used to collect this information. This approach proved useful for Steve, yielding feedback that helped him see how his frequent blowups impacted his subordinates, peers and supervisors. “S+EI is squarely in the public consciousness and offers a promising area of growth for coaches.” CASE STUDIES One activity recommended across the board for fostering emotional self-awareness is emotional tracking. The coach can provide clients with a comprehensive list of emotions and request that they track what they’re feeling throughout each day for a week. This kind of steady, sustained self-reflection helps clients become more aware of what they’re experiencing in the moment. It also expands their emotional vocabulary, giving them a better understanding of and language for 42 the nuances of what they’re feeling. For example, are they feeling anxious, or apprehensive? There’s a difference. Are they feeling enthusiastic or exhilarated? Again, there’s a difference. Jan and Steve initially pushed back on the idea of tracking their emotions, saying they were too busy, but with encouragement each gave it a try. Not surprisingly, Richard said yes immediately when presented with the idea. Jan came to her next coaching session, spreadsheet in hand, saying she was surprised by the exercise. “I didn’t think I even had emotions!” she exclaimed. The exercise helped her identify moments when she’d become defensive (when a client questioned her data analysis, for example), and her interpersonal communication skills improved as she tuned in to this reaction. Over time, she developed the ability to read her clients, and discovered that what she heard as criticism was in fact clients’ confusion about details of her reports. She became better able to respond in a helpful manner and a pleasant tone of voice to their lack of understanding when she realized it was about them, not her. Although Steve wasn’t as thorough as Jan, he completed the exercise with enough frequency to discover a pattern to his anxiety and frustration— those moments and situations when he was most According to a case study by In a 1998 article for the journal According to a case study Six Seconds Consulting’s Joshua “Psychological Science,” David C. published by the organizational Freedman, Sheraton Hotels saw a McClelland reveals that PepsiCo consulting firm Genos, S+EI 24-percent increase in market generated 10 percent more programs at IBM are driving share in those markets where they productivity and experienced a significantly higher employee introduced S+EI training whopping 87-percent decrease engagement levels. and coaching. in turnover by recruiting and developing managers with high levels of EI. IS IT REALLY ANY WONDER THAT THE DEMAND IS GROWING F Coaching World | August 2013