Our Six Areas of
Essential Skills

Our set of Essential Skills has been defined on the basis of our professional experiences as well as empirical evidence from neuroscience, psychology, sociology and contemplative sciences.

This set, composed of a range of key skills that are interrelated and mutually enriching, is divided into six main areas.

These six areas of skills form the structure of our various training courses and encompass all the knowledge, mindset and skillset that help each individual to observe, analyse and act in the most constructive way.

These skills are truly beneficial because they have a direct impact on the quality of individual life and the efficient functioning of organisations1J. K. Harter, F. L. Schmidt and T. L. Hayes, Business-Unit-Level Relationship Between Employee Satisfaction, Employee Engagement, and Business Outcomes: A Meta-Analysis, Journal of Applied Psychology (2002) + T. Rath and J. Harter, The Economics of Wellbeing, Gallup (2002) + A. W. Woolley, C. F. Chabris, A. Pentland, N. Hashmi, and T. W. Malone, Evidence for a Collective Intelligence Factor in the Performance of Human Groups, Science (2010)..

Our Six Areas of Essential Skills

1. Mental focus & awareness

The first step is to improve the quality of Mental Focus. Today, we have never been so scattered, distracted and interrupted at work due to the volume of tasks and information to be processed, continuous distractions from the working environment, unintentional mind wandering2Claire M. Zedelius and Jonathan W. Schooler, How Different Types of Mind-Wandering Affect Cognition and Behavior. (2018) The Oxford Handbook of Spontaneous Thought, Chap. 18., and diversions into personal activities.

Beyond the myth of multitasking, these constant interferences seriously hinder cognitive processes, decision-making and behaviours, generating individual stress and anxiety, and a financial cost for organisations due to errors, incidents, and loss of productivity. These costs are now so significant that it has become necessary to recreate value through the strengthening of mental focus and awareness and the adoption of new ways of working.

The aim of this first area of skills is to introduce mindfulness practices and their benefits to help people to develop their Mental Focus as well as their Awareness, as behavioural changes require an awareness of oneself and others at cognitive and emotional levels.

Our programme also includes a specific workshop to help teams and managers redefine some of the common working methods to improve individual and collective efficiency.

Our Six Areas of Essential Skills

2. Emotional competencies

Neuroscience has provided evidence on how emotions and cognitive processes are interconnected and influence each other3C. M. Tyng, H. U. Amin, M. N. M. Saad, et A. S. Malik, The Influences of Emotion on Learning and Memory. (2017) Psychology, vol. 8.. We now know with certainty that emotions are involved in most judgments, behaviours and decisions. This is why, in a complex and demanding professional life, emotional competencies have become essential for everyone in the workforce to build quality relationships and maintain positive and effective daily states of mind.

The aim of this second area of skills is to understand the role of emotions and how to cultivate emotional intelligence and emotional balance. It presents scientific aspects regarding how emotions work, and participants are presented with specific introductory practices to improve the management of their own emotional states, and to develop their capacity to recognize and manage the emotions of others and use these skills wisely in a professional context.

Our Six Areas of Essential Skills

3. Subjective well-being

“Subjective well-being” is the terminology used by scientists to define happiness. Today, we have more than 20 years of scientific studies on well-being at personal and professional levels and the evidence is clear: being happier is a skill that can be learned4S. Lyubomirsky, K. M. Sheldon et D. Schkade, Pursuing Happiness: The Architecture of Sustainable Change. (2005) Review of General Psychology, vol. 9.. This statement raises many questions that find their answers among the fascinating scientific discoveries on the Why and How of happiness and its many implications in organisations at individual, social and organisational levels.

The objective of this third area of skills is to foster the necessary understanding and motivation to increase personal and collective well-being.

Our Six Areas of Essential Skills

4. Prosocial skills

One of the roots of well-being and efficiency in the workplace lies in the way people interact and work together, and the values that define the work environment5A. E. Colbert, J. E. Bono et R. K. Purvanova, Flourishing via Workplace Relationships: Moving Beyond Instrumental Support. (2016) AMJ, vol. 59.. Surprisingly, this crucial aspect is rarely managed because most of the time, the culture of an organisation is implicitly determined by the behaviour of its executives. The result may be inspiring… or not.

In any case, good intentions are not enough because building a culture in which people thrive and the organisation succeeds requires an explicit definition of key values and a workforce trained in prosocial skills.

The objective of this fourth area of skills is to share scientific evidence on the benefit of cultivating ethical values at work and to offer methods to strengthen our innate prosocial qualities such as trust, kindness, empathy, compassion, gratitude and civility, as well as skills for effective communication and constructive conflict management.

Our programme also includes workshops to support individuals, teams and managers in defining the core values of the organisation, and in reflecting on how they can transform certain aspects of the work environment in a positive direction.

Our Six Areas of Essential Skills

5. Resilience

The professional environment is now described as volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA), creating a profound contradiction with our innate need for security and a conflict between individual aspirations for well-being and the day-to-day reality.

This highly challenging context deeply affects the emotional state of individuals and their physical and mental health, as shown by various reports on emotions and commitment at work in Europe6Global Emotions Report. (2018) Gallup + State of the Global Workplace. (2017) Gallup.. The good news is that resilience, which is the dynamic psychological capacity to adapt and cope with adversity, depends upon mental factors that can be consolidated using strategies validated by a growing body of scientific knowledge7F. Luthans, G. R. Vogelgesang et P. B. Lester, Developing the Psychological Capital of Resiliency. (2006) Human Resource Development Review, vol. 5..

The aim of this fifth area of skills is to train individuals, teams and managers in applying tools and techniques that allow them to remain balanced and able to constructively manage stress and difficulties at work.

Our Six Areas of Essential Skills

6. Purpose & engagement

We are currently facing a workforce engagement crisis. Today, employees in Europe express a particularly low level of personal well-being and engagement, and this significantly impacts the productivity of organisations8State of the Global Workplace. (2017) Gallup.. At a macroeconomic level, it is the result of the last 15 years of financial and political turmoil, but at a microeconomic level it is the direct consequence of management strategies lacking investment in the promotion of Human Capital.

More than ever, colleagues working together need to be guided by shared values and an overall mission, which depend on nurturing an appropriate working culture. For many organisations, this represents a significant cultural transformation, but scientific studies demonstrate the best reason to do so: it is a win-win strategy as employees’ engagement directly impacts clients’ satisfaction and business outcomes9Building a High-Development Culture Through Your Employee Engagement Strategy. (2019) Gallup..

The aim of this sixth area of skills is to highlight the importance of individual goals and aspirations and to provide the means to connect them with purpose and engagement in the workplace.

Our programme also includes a workshop dedicated to Job Redesign which promotes job satisfaction and commitment by giving more meaning to job tasks and relationships.