The On-Liner

September 2006 Edition


In this issue:

Read the latest President's Message

EAPA - NC Chapter Upcoming Events


October 19, 2006
Comfort Inn
9801 U.S. Highway 15/501
Pinehurst, NC

Join us on October 19, 2006 when we meet again at First Health of the Carolinas/Moore Regional Hospital Conference Center in Pinehurst, NC. During the morning session, Dr. Fernando Cobos, will be presenting on Dual Diagnosis: Substance Abuse and Mental Illness. As a trained Addiction Psychiatrist and Medical Director of the hospital's substance abuse treatment programs, he will lead us to a better understanding of assessing and treating these co-morbid conditions through lecture and handouts.

Smith Worth, LCSW, LCAS, will present on Gambling and Addiction for the afternoon session. In her role as the Program Administrator for the North Carolina Problem Gambling Program, she will provide an overview and history, along with differentiating between problem and pathological gambling. Participants will learn about screening and assessment tools, in addition to resources available to help in working with this type of client.

See Conferences and Events page for registration form and additional information.

December Workshop: December 7, 2006 in the Charlotte area -- exact location and topics to be determined.


On August 9 & 10, 2006 the chapter hosted a special training event at the Clarion Hotel in Greensboro. The EAPA NC Chapter Board had voted a year earlier to allocate funds for this as a way of recognizing our members and the strength of our chapter. We wanted to enhance the value of membership by providing an opportunity for all members to share in the financial success of our past March Conferences.

Over the last two years of being your Vice President, I have heard comments about the uniqueness of the EA field and how satisfying it is when we have a presenter who fully understands what we do. We hit a home run with Andy Le Fave. His 25 years of EA and business/professional coaching experience with companies such as Dell, Motorola, Sony, and Johnson and Johnson, among others, allowed for a depth of education and understanding that was incredibly beneficial to all attending.

On the first day of the conference, the 42 participants learned about the history of business coaching and the evolution of EAP coaching services, as well as the distinction between Wellness, Life and Business Coaching. Additionally, we learned the step-by-step components of a competency-based model. We were given tools and opportunities to practice the skills of an initial assessment and development planning from a coaching perspective. On the second day, we were given a better understanding of how and when to deliver coaching services, as well as information on different personality testing tools that help in the assessment process. Andy utilized the time very well. He used a lecture style mixed with educational activities and role-playing.

Andy's extensive understanding of Business Coaching allowed for his presentation to be exactly what the attendees needed. We walked away feeling that we had a very valuable new service or product and, more importantly, the competency to offer it to our customers and organizations. As further enhancement to a great experience, we all received a workbook and CD with tools and instruments that will make the transitions to Business Coach a little easier. Andy's cool and relaxed delivery, dry sense of humor and quick wit made it easy to stay focused on the content and be comfortable in a classroom setting for 13 full hours.

In compiling the data from 32 evaluations, participants gave Andy very high marks. He received (based upon answers from 10 questions per evaluation) 258 excellent, 47 good, 8 satisfactory, 5 less than satisfactory and 2 poor. The low scores were primarily due to environmental factors: temperature in the room, visual problems from the back of the room, not having a microphone in addition to some feedback about the handouts being not in order. Comments included words like relevant, great, user friendly, excellent, wonderful and there were lots of thanks to the Board for making this possible.

No wonder EAPA-North Carolina Chapter won the Outstanding Chapter of the Year Award in 2005!

Lindy Langston, LEAP
Vice President
EAPA-North Carolina Chapter

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LEAP Update

Linda Braswell is the new chairperson of the LEAP Board, and Patrice Alexander was appointed to the LEAP Board by the Governor. Congratulations Linda and Patrice!

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Book Review: Ready or Not, Here Life Comes

Author: Mel Levine, M.D. 2005 Simon & Schuster 286 pages
Book Review for NC EAPA OnLiner by Christine F. Jones, CEAP, LEAP
Prevention Coordinator/Employee Assistance Program Coordinator
Army Substance Abuse Program/EAP Program
Wiesbaden, Germany

"Work-life unreadiness," an affliction described by Dr. Mel Levine, is a phenomenon many of us as employee assistance professionals are likely to see in the populations we serve, regardless of industry or workplace setting. Dr. Mel Levine is a nationally recognized pediatrician, a professor of pediatrics at the University of North Carolina Medical School and director of its Clinical Center for the Study of Development and Learning. In his recent book, "Ready or Not, Here Life Comes", Dr. Levine identifies an epidemic of career unreadiness finding many young adults beginning what he has termed the "startup years" unprepared for the challenges of a productive life. As EAPs, we see employees at various stages in life. This book provokes thoughtful consideration to issues we often see young workers struggling with as they adjust to the real world.

What insights might an EAP gain from a pediatrician on this topic? Dr. Levine reflects, "Work-life unreadiness can plague an entire society or even a global culture. Individuals who are unemployed, underemployed, or unhappily employed impose a heavy drain on our resources." This book is not only for parents, educators, or guidance counselors. How many times have you had a young adult worker with a wealth of potential and talent seek EAP services, or be referred as perhaps a supervisory referral? As an EAP professional, you may find yourself wondering why this "start up adult," with no other obvious problems, seems to be struggling to make a successful transition to the world of work? Dr. Levine's writings may shed some light on this issue. He examines twelve key growth processes grouped into four major themes: inner direction- consisting of one's insight, foresight, and self-launching; interpretation- consisting of comprehension, pattern recognition, and evaluative thinking; instrumentation- consisting of skill building, adaptation, work efficiency, and productive thinking; and lastly interaction- consisting of communication, alliance formation, reputation management, and political behavior. These are not merely lofty abstract concepts. Dr. Levine provides clear illustrations of how these manifest in career examples. He also explores some pathways that lead to problems during the startup years. Common scenarios and variations include adolescence that won't end, wrong roads taken, and minds that are in debt. The second part of the book examines ways in which careers might be appropriately selected and smoothly launched, describing the above mentioned growth processes and what might be done to optimize their development.

Part three discusses what Dr. Levine identifies as the role of the "growers." These are those individuals who need to be concerned with work-life readiness and the "insights and practices these mind growers can use to ensure work-life readiness." Although we are not career counselors per se, I think EAPs fit in well here. I encourage you to read the entire book, but Part three in particular offers valuable insights in understanding the young adult client who comes to us struggling with the issues identified in this book. We have all seem them. Sometimes they are dealing with other issues as well, but the practical situations and work-life context offered by the author will give your EAP practice an added dimension when it comes to the challenge of understanding today's young adult worker. Positive chronicles of passages into and through the startup years help us understand the reasons why successful startup adults are work-life ready.

I discovered this book through the Army European library on-line non-fiction book club. What a find! I discovered not only a book to recommend to my EAP colleagues, but a practical tool to help me understand and in turn help young adults in successfully navigating the adult world of work. It was equally exciting to discover, from the other side of the world, that the author happened to be based in North Carolina!

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September is National Recovery Month

This year's theme is " Join the Voices for Recovery: Build a Stronger, Healthier Community." Some websites with information about recovery month and addiction:

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Quote to Reflect On

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has-
Margaret Mead

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Members preparing for Day 1 of "Business Coaching: Leveraging EAP Skills"
A winning smile. The presentation was clearly informative and enjoyable!
Andy LeFave, ACSW, CEAP presents "Business Coaching"
Chapter members contemplating decision at business meeting.
Just a few of the chapter members in attendance for the workshop.

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