Master Facilitator Journal | Issue #0310, August 7, 2007

Dear friends,
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This week, we explore Emotional Intelligence (EI)--its impact on you as a facilitator and how its understanding can improve your facilitation, training and coaching. This week's article, "Use Your EQ to Improve Your Facilitation," was written by Debra Cannarella, Operations Manager of High Performing Systems, Inc. (HPS) and discusses the benefits learning and applying EI concepts in your work with groups.

Expert Interview with Dr. Dick Thompson. Join me and Dr. Dick Thompson, expert in the field of Emotional Intelligence, next Thursday, August 16th, to find out why people are so excited about EI, how you can use it as a facilitator, and how you can become a certified EI practitioner.

The Journey of Facilitation and Collaboration Workshop. FacilitatorU in cooperation with the University of Wisconsin, is offering the "Journey of Facilitation and Collaboration," a live training workshop based on 20 archetypes of the Integral Facilitator in late October. You'll have the opportunity to practice the competencies of self-facilitation, social awareness, and group process required before, during, and after group facilitation events. Please see full details at the end of this issue.

Have a great week!

Steve Davis
Publisher and Founder of


FacilitatorU membership

Click here for detail

EQ Workshop

The Point

Use Your EQ to Improve Your Facilitation

Understand your emotional intelligence to leverage your success as a facilitator.

Self-Facilitation Skill

Emotional Intelligence (EI) is currently a hot topic in facilitation, training and coaching. Although there are many schools of thought on the topic, they do share a common theme: understanding your emotions, knowing how to express them appropriately, and interacting with others in a constructive manner can help increase your chances for success in life. In fact, in some cases, EI has been shown to be a stronger indicator for predicting success in corporate environments than IQ.

Some people are bound to ask, “How can this ‘touchy-feely’ stuff really help me be a better leader in my organization?” Let’s look at an example to illustrate the impact of EI on perceived success in business.

In the process of working with a senior-level leadership team in a mid-size manufacturing company, Dr. Dick Thompson of High Performing Systems, Inc., asked the team to identify employees at the manager level who were real “superstars” in the company. Senior leaders were asked to identify managers that they would like to “clone” if they were able to do so. The result was a list of superstar managers.

These superstars were then asked to complete the Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory® (EQ-i®), an assessment used to measure Emotional Intelligence. When the superstars were compared to other employees in the organization, the results were staggering—the superstars’ average score was over ten points higher than the average of the other employees!

Without knowing the EI scores of the employees in the company, the senior leaders identified those managers who had the highest EI scores in the company as being the superstar performers in the organization. Is it possible that other employees were just as technically proficient as the superstar group? Of course, but technical expertise is not the only factor indicative of success as a manager. What the other group lacked, and what the superstars had, is that extra something special, the "x-factor." Until recently, a vocabulary for describing this x-factor did not exist. Now we have a term to describe it —Emotional Intelligence.


What does this mean for facilitators, trainers and coaches? Helping your clients identify and improve their Emotional Intelligence can help them become superstar employees. Even more importantly, becoming aware of and developing your own EI can help you become a superstar facilitator.

Emotional Intelligence plays a key role in all interpersonal interactions, including your interactions in meetings, one-on-one coaching and counseling. The way you interact with your clients and the way they respond to you are impacted by EI. Understanding EI can help you improve your interaction style and increase your chances for success.

Whether you simply want to understand Emotional Intelligence better on a conceptual level or become a certified administrator of an EI assessment, the benefits of using EI concepts are tremendous. Understanding your clients and being able to adjust your approach with them are critical skills in successful facilitation. EI can help you modify your approach to the style of the group. Knowing the emotional strengths and weaknesses of group members can help you create a plan for facilitation that addresses the needs of the group.

As a facilitator, you can:

  • Know yourself. Identify your strengths from an Emotional Intelligence perspective and find ways to capitalize on them. Are your strengths primarily in Self-awareness and emotional regulation? In reading the emotions of others and managing relationships with them? In managing stressful situations and controlling your impulses? In being adaptable to changing demands? In your general mood and approach to life?

  • Read the room. Be aware of the strengths and potential challenges of the group you’re working with and tailor your presentation to focus on their needs. In working with a high Assertiveness group, for example, you might expect challenging questions and participants who aren’t afraid to speak up in the group. A group high in Social Responsibility might want to know how to apply the learning to the greater good. A group low in Independence might want to work collectively on a problem and create a group solution.

  • Increase awareness. Find ways to help participants identify their strengths and maximize their innate abilities in Emotional Intelligence.

  • Build on strengths. A little effort applied to an area that is already in place will yield a big result. People tend to do this by nature without necessarily being conscious of it. Bringing this awareness to the forefront will help participants get the most out of their abilities.

  • Contain potential challenges. Trying to create something from nothing is very difficult. Rather than trying to enhance an Emotional Intelligence attribute that isn’t there, find ways to contain or guard against any potential challenges that might arise.

Understanding Emotional Intelligence will enhance your personal success as a facilitator, in terms of your own performance as well as enhancing the success of your clients. Knowing your own emotional barometer will reveal much to you about your style of facilitation and how you deal with your clients. How well you tolerate stress, handle change, express your emotions, and interact with others are all influenced by EI. As you develop your own Emotional Intelligence skill set, you will be able to help yourself and your clients increase your chances of joining the superstars list.

About the Author: Debra Cannarella is the Operations Manager of High Performing Systems, Inc. (HPS), a management training and consulting firm that specializes in helping organizations reach high performance by using a variety of assessment tools, including the EQ-i. She can be reached at (706) 769-5836 or You can find out more about HPS on their web site,

The Emotional Quotient Inventory and EQ-i are registered trademarks of Multi-Health Systems, Inc.

Do you know your EQ? What can you do to enhance your and your group's emotional intelligence? If you're not sure, attend the teleclass on Emotional Intelligence next Tuesday, August 16, at 1:00 Eastern. See details below.

Become certified to administer and provide feedback on the EQ-i. Workshop dates are SEP 17-19, 2007, in Athens, GA.
The EQ-i Certification Workshop will prepare you to administer the EQ-i and provide feedback on the results. The Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory (EQ-i), created by Dr. Reuven Bar-On, is the first scientifically developed and validated measure of emotional intelligence. The EQ-i is based on over 20 years of research and has been tested on over 110,000 people worldwide. Researchers suggest that emotional intelligence is a key determinant of one’s success in life.  Click here to learn more about the EQ-i Certification Training and please mention FacilitatorU when you register.

Expert Interview
Dick Thompson

Tapping into Emotional Intelligence and Stress Management to Enhance Leader Performance...

Featuring Dr. Dick Thompson,
Consultant, Trainer, Speaker, Author and Founder of High Performing Systems, Inc.

"Just in Time" Learning

A mounting body of evidence suggests that leaders with high Emotional Intelligence (EI) tend to outperform leaders with low EI in most leadership situations. There is also evidence that high levels of stress may reduce a leader’s ability to effectively perform his/her role as a leader. In fact, examples of leaders experiencing Catastrophic Leadership Failure abound.

This Micro-Skills Seminar looks at the relationship among EI, stress and leader performance in a variety of settings. It also explores how facilitators and trainers can help participants (and themselves) enhance EI, reduce stress and help prevent Catastrophic Leadership Failure. Learn tips for recognizing stress, identifying key EI skills that have the biggest impact on reducing the negative impacts of stress, and improving facilitation and training to enhance the performance of your participants using EI concepts. Find out how Emotional Intelligence, stress management and successful facilitation skills can combine to form a three-legged stool to enhance your performance as a facilitator.

Attend this one-hour tele-seminar with Dr. Dick Thompson and Steve Davis on Thursday, August 16th at 1:00 PM EST (NY Time) where we'll discuss the answers to these questions...

  • What is EI and why are people so excited about it?
  • What are the different EI models and how do you know which one to use?
  • What are the requirements for using these instruments?
  • What is the relationship between EI and successful facilitation?
  • How can facilitators use EI to help participants improve performance?
  • What is the relationship between EI and stress?
  • How do you build an Emotionally Intelligent organization?
  • How can you help participants (and yourself) enhance EI and reduce stress to help avoid Catastrophic Leadership Failure?
  • Any questions you have.

Click here to register

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In the Spotlight

Journey of Collaboration and Facilitation Workshop

Join us for a powerful journey into the complex world of facilitation and collaboration. During this workshop, you will be introduced to a comprehensive model for facilitation, one that balances “hard” and “soft” skills.

Using hands-on, multi-modal approaches, we’ll take you beyond theory to walk the path of mastery using a holistic set of facilitation competencies. These competencies are based on a new model encompassing twenty archetypes of the integral facilitator, informed by the "integral" philosophy of Ken Wilber.

Upon completion of the workshop, each “sojourner” will be awarded a professional certificate in Integral Facilitation and Collaboration from UW-Madison.

Group collaboration is an art and science whose time has come…

Overall, 36% of a company’s profitability, innovation, quality, and growth
are due to its Collaboration Index.

—Frost and Sullivan White Paper Sponsored by Verizon and Microsoft—

Instructors: Steve Davis, Darin Harris, Harry Webne-Behrman

Sponsored by: A partnership between and the UW-Madison Offices of Human Resource Development and Quality Improvement

Registration: Register early, as space is limited to 25 participants. Click here to register or contact Harry Webne-Behrman at (608) 262-9934.

Price: The price for the 5-day workshop and Learning Community Calls is $750.

Register before October 1st for only $600!

Lodging: Meals and lodging are available to participants adjacent to the workshop site at the Friedrick Center, our beautiful lakeside retreat center on campus. Click here to learn more about this facility. Call (toll free) 866-301-1753 for room reservations and ask for “FACILITATION WORKSHOP” when reserving your room.

This is a pilot program that may never to be offered again at this low price. It promises to be a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Click Here for Complete Details and Registration

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