The following 22
guidelines represent the best current knowledge about how to promote emotional
intelligence in the workplace. They apply to any development effort in
which social and emotional learning is a goal. This would include most
management and executive development efforts as well as training in supervisory
skills, diversity, teamwork, leadership, conflict management, stress management,
sales, customer relations, etc.
These guidelines are based
on an exhaustive review of the research literature in training and development,
counseling and psychotherapy, and behavior change. The guidelines are additive
and synergistic; to be effective, social and emotional learning experiences
need not adhere to all of these guidelines, but the chances for success
increase with each one that is followed.
The guidelines are divided
into four phases that correspond to the four phases of the development
process: preparation, training, transfer and maintenance, and evaluation.
Each phase is important.
These guidelines were developed
for the Consortium by Daniel
Goleman and Cary Cherniss,
with the assistance of Kim
Cowan, Rob Emmerling,
and Mitchel Adler.
If you are interested in the full technical report that includes all the
supporting research for each guideline, if
you are interested in the full technical report that includes all the supporting
research for each guideline, you view the full
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Paving the Way
Doing the Work of Change
Assess the organizationís needs: Determine
the competencies that are most critical for effective job performance in
a particular type of job. In doing so, use a valid method, such as comparison
of the behavioral events interviews of superior performers and average
performers. Also make sure the competencies to be developed are congruent
with the organizationís culture and overall strategy.
Assess the individual: This assessment should
be based on the key competencies needed for a particular job, and the data
should come from multiple sources using multiple methods to maximize credibility
Deliver assessments with care: Give the individual
information on his/her strengths and weaknesses. In doing so, try to be
accurate and clear. Also, allow plenty of time for the person to digest
and integrate the information. Provide the feedback in a safe and supportive
environment in order to minimize resistance and defensiveness. But also
avoid making excuses or downplaying the seriousness of deficiencies.
Maximize learner choice: People are more motivated
to change when they freely choose to do so. As much as possible, allow
people to decide whether or not they will participate in the development
process, and have them set the change goals themselves.
Encourage people to participate: People will
be more likely to participate in development efforts if they perceive them
to be worthwhile and effective. Organizational policies and procedures
should encourage people to participate in development activity, and supervisors
should provide encouragement and the necessary support. Motivation also
will be enhanced if people trust the credibility of those who encourage
them to undertake the training.
Link learning goals to personal values: People
are most motivated to pursue change that fits with their values and hopes.
If a change matters little to people, they wonít pursue it. Help people
understand whether a given change fits with what matters most to them.
Adjust expectations: Build positive expectations
by showing learners that social and emotional competence can be improved
and that such improvement will lead to valued outcomes. Also, make sure
that the learners have a realistic expectation of what the training process
Gauge readiness: Assess whether the individual
is ready for training. If the person is not ready because of insufficient
motivation or other reasons, make readiness the focus of intervention efforts.
Did It Work? Evaluating Change
Foster a positive relationship between the trainers
and learners: Trainers who are warm, genuine, and empathic are best
able to engage the learners in the change process. Select trainers who
have these qualities, and make sure that they use them when working with
Make change self-directed: Learning is more
effective when people direct their own learning program, tailoring it to
their unique needs and circumstances. In addition to allowing people to
set their own learning goals, let them continue to be in charge of their
learning throughout the program, and tailor the training approach
to the individualís learning style.
Set clear goals: People need to be clear about
what the competence is, how to acquire it, and how to show it on the job.
Spell out the specific behaviors and skills that make up the target competence.
Make sure that the goals are clear, specific, and optimally challenging.
Break goals into manageable steps: Change
is more likely to occur if the change process is divided into manageable
steps. Encourage both trainers and trainees to avoid being overly ambitious.
Provide opportunities to practice: Lasting
change requires sustained practice on the job and elsewhere in life. An
automatic habit is being unlearned and different responses are replacing
it. Use naturally occurring opportunities for practice at work and in life.
Encourage the trainees to try the new behaviors repeatedly and consistently
over a period of months.
Give performance feedback: Ongoing feedback
encourages people and directs change. Provide focused and sustained feedback
as the learners practice new behaviors. Make sure that supervisors, peers,
friends, family members Ė or some combination of these Ė give periodic
feedback on progress.
Rely on experiential methods: Active, concrete,
experiential methods tend to work best for learning social and emotional
competencies. Development activities that engage all the senses and that
are dramatic and powerful can be especially effective.
Build in support: Change is facilitated through
ongoing support of others who are going through similar changes (such as
a support group). Programs should encourage the formation of groups where
people give each other support throughout the change effort. Coaches and
mentors also can be valuable in helping support the desired change.
Use models: Use live or videotaped models
that clearly show how the competency can be used in realistic situations.
Encourage learners to study, analyze, and emulate the models.
Enhance insight: Self-awareness is the cornerstone
of emotional and social competence. Help learners acquire greater understanding
about how their thoughts, feelings, and behavior affect themselves and
Prevent relapse: Use relapse prevention, which
helps people use lapses and mistakes as lessons to prepare themselves for
Encouraging Transfer and Maintenance of
Encourage use of skills on the job: Supervisors,
peers, and subordinates should reinforce and reward learners for using
their new skills on the job. Coaches and mentors also can serve this function.
Also, provide prompts and cues, such as through periodic follow-ups. Change
also is more likely to endure when high status persons, such as supervisors
and upper-level management model it.
Develop an organizational culture that supports
learning: Change will be more enduring if the organizationís culture
and tone support the change and offer a safe atmosphere for experimentation.
22. Evaluate: To see if the development
effort has lasting effects, evaluate it. When possible, find unobtrusive
measures of the competence or skill as shown on the job, before and after
training and also at least two months later. One-year follow-ups also are
highly desirable. In addition to charting progress on the acquisition of
competencies, also assess the impact on important job-related outcomes,
such as performance measures, and indicators of adjustment such as absenteeism,
grievances, health status, etc.