They also have asked me to link up my blog to other blogs through citations, trackbacks and other sundry blogspace tricks, to build up my network and my technorati rating. I refuse to do this as well, arguing that I don't really write for anyone at all, not even for me. I say foolish, emotionally unintelligent things like: "I write because I write."
This, the marketing people wisely find incomprehensible. I sympathize with them as I find it incomprensible as well: irrational in the economic and the psychology sense. I am also irritated by my inability to understand why I find all this incomprehensible, and I react badly, sullen and distant, demonstrating a severe emotional intelligence deficit.
Why is it, we might ask, that a reasonably intelligent person like me is "emotionally intelligence challenged"? The truth is, I "have issues" with emotional intelligence, and find my colleagues at work with high levels of emotional intelligence irritating. As I see it, emotional intelligence at work is actually nothing more or less than an imperiously over-developed self-control that suppresses the 6 other characteristics that Daniel Goleman claims are part of emotional intelligence.
(An important aside: It is not really necessary to say "at work" when talking about emotional intelligence because no one I know has ever experienced or seen emotional intelligence in their personal lives.)
At work, then, CEO's, especially those who have embraced "stewardship", are universally admired for their emotional intelligence (i.e., control), and for the ease with which they explain how their companies' core values and the great people that work at their great companies make their companies different from all other great companies.
Emotional intelligence is not limited just to CEOs, fortunately. Many other actual and aspiring leaders value and cultivate emotional intelligence. They know that this is what expected if one is to get to the top. I, and those like me, of course, know that we will never get to the top because we lack that the self-control gene. Many of my friends have suffered for this, and engaged in meditation, yoga, and other forms of self-flagellation in an attempt to acquire the self-control gene without which emotional intelligence can not flourish ... only to find that despite enjoying enormously the fun and games of seeking self-control that they have hardly improved at all and that their colleagues at work still consider them too immature to be top management material.
There is an out, however, an escape. You can, once you reach the top, decide to be your emotionally immature self. This then makes you "creative", and the driving force behind the entrepreneurial success of the firm. Of course, at the first hint of failure, your "creativity" will miraculously be converted once again into emotional un-intelligence and you will be banished.
Samuel Eto'o, the Cameroon football star playing for FC Barcelona, has figured this all out. This week he's gone on a binge insulting coaches and players. They are all dishonest and dishonorable, and he's sure he's right about everything. Maybe he is. But we will never know. So what? What everyone is concerned about is Eto's severe disjunction of emotions and intelligence. The emotions do what they are supposed to do, and the intelligence does what it's supposed to do, and the two ignore each other. The result is a frenzy of sincerity that's borderline Tourette's syndrome. It's entertaining for those who are not involved, but for the people around him it's hell. It's especially so for his coach, Frank Rikjaard, and FC Barcelona President, Joan Laporta, of whom everyone expects emotional intelligence, though what they really would like to do is give him a kick in the butt to straighten him out.
When Eto'o, like myself, realizes what a mess he's made, he's of two minds. On the one hand, he's angry with himself for his lack of control; on the other hand, he's proud of himself for saying what he really feels. An emotionally intelligent person knows that this is ridiculous, and that Falstaffian foolishness aside, discretion truly is the better part of valor. But not Eto'o.
Eto'o, who is 26, is a young man with an excuse. I am wondering what mine is. Discretion tells me that I ought not post this blog, but the disconnect in me wants to do it. My excuse is that I am just explaining why I don't write personal blogs and that I don't have to do this ever again.
Coming from STRATEGIC THINKING