MASBO News - 2015 - (Page 8)

Message from the Executive Director Emotional Intelligence 2.0 W Roy Seidler, MASBO Executive Director hen I became the Executive Director of MASBO in 2008, I wrote my first article for MASBO News on how business officials rely on their emotional intelligences as well as their entry level expertise to become successful leaders. Given that the theme of this year's Convention is "Emotional Intelligences in Action," I would like to revisit and add to my earlier observations on the same subject. The two emotional intelligences I would like to explore are self-awareness and self-regulation. We cannot control the world, but through self-awareness and self-regulation we can control how we think about it; we can be free from the tyranny of our impulses. While this is unbelievably simple as a concept, it is undeniably profound in its implications when ignored. Lack of self-awareness and self-regulation can create trouble for leaders in two ways. Defensiveness "Time wounds all heels." - Groucho Marx When we are not aware of our changing emotions we are susceptible to saying things and acting in ways we may regret. How many times have you left a meeting saying to yourself, "Why did I have to say what I did?" All too often, in the face of an opposing point of view, we give in to the primordial "fight or flight" mode. Whether a threat is real or imagined (almost always imagined) and of a psychological, not a physical, variety, a fragile ego can be easily threatened. We stop acting in a rational way. A self-aware person can learn to recognize the onset of defensiveness: the need to disprove another, rising blood pressure, shortness of breath and the narrowing of vision (both real and metaphorically). When you become aware of these reactions, it is time to take a deep breath, step back figuratively and take the "balcony view." It is unfortunate that we get defensive when no insult or challenge was intended. It is even more unfortunate and more damaging when we get defensive when an insult or challenge is levelled at us. Why? Because when a threat is real, getting defensive and losing our powers of rational thinking is not productive. Inflated Ego No one gets up in the morning wanting to invite the hatred and disrespect of others. Yet, when leaders are not self-aware and self-regulated, they invite this response from others. Followers often defer to the ideas and opinions of the leader in a perceived mismatch of power. If the leader is not careful, he or she may start believing that they actually are smarter than everyone else and are always right. Even leaders with the best of intentions and the most collaborative leadership style can fall into this mindset (usually about when it is time for them to leave...or be asked to leave). The great American sociologist Groucho Marx once observed that, "Time wounds all heels!" Power corrupts because power can weaken our core ethical values. We start taking shortcuts in our actions and decisions without checking the timeless principles and values embraced by truly great leaders. Great leaders do not compromise their values out of a false sense of infallibility and self-importance. Recent research has shown that unlike our intelligence quotient, our emotional quotient can be improved through conscientious self-awareness and self-regulation. There is a magic elixir that can prevent the over-inflation of a "wounded heel." It is called humility. It can be boosted with an equal dose of empathy. Finally, before we are too quick to say, "I wish my boss would think about this," let us all do our own self-reflection on our journey towards more competent and effectiveness leadership as school business officials. ■ 8 * Read this issue online at

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of MASBO News - 2015

MASBO 2014–2015 Executive
2014–2015 Committees
Message from the MASBO President
Message from the Executive Director
Honourary/Life Members
Under Construction –
MASBO Announces an Exclusive Pre-Conference Workshop
MASBO Annual Convention: “Emotional Intelligences in Action”
“It Ain’t What You Do…”: The Power of Emotional Intelligence
MASBO Welcomes New Executive Members
MASBO Says Farewell
2015 Grey Owl Award Recipient
Pupil Transportation: The Requirements and the Realities
The Canadian Pupil Transportation Conference is “Going to Winnipeg” in 2016
Workplace Safety and Health Programs Evolving in Manitoba School Divisions
MSBA Pension Plan Update
9 Things Highly Effective Leaders Do
Update on Sustainability for the New Schools in Manitoba
Index to Advertisers

MASBO News - 2015