Front Desk

Addressing the Opioid Epidemic

By Maria Lund, LEAP, CEAP


The skyrocketing increase in the use of opioids has emerged as a major health problem across a broad spectrum of ages, social classes, and geographic locations across the world. In this issue’s cover story, Bernie McCann, PhD, CEAP, points out that, “EAPs are increasingly encountering cases of abuse and addiction among covered workers and their families.” As EA professionals, we are frequently at the forefront of personal and workplace intervention efforts stemming from substance use, which means we can play an important role in stemming the tide of this disturbing trend.

This issue of the JEA also features the theme of resolving conflict and miscommunication in the workplace, which is at the heart of many performance problems. L. Georgi DiStefano and Bill Eddy introduce readers to CARS(SM), a new approach for effectively addressing high-conflict situations with clients, co-workers, or supervisors in the workplace. The authors describe each of the four steps in CARS(SM) and walk us through a specific example of this method.

Continuing with the theme of improving communication in the workplace, Mel Burt-Gracik discusses emotional intelligence (EQ). She describes how EQ recognizes that emotions impact behavior and affect people – positively and negatively. As EA professionals, we can guide employee clients in how to manage their emotions and grow their emotional intelligence, which can lead to better performance, especially when they are under stress.

Both CARS(SM) and EQ strategies imply the client wants to change his or her behavior. What about instances in which this isn’t the case? Steve Albrecht, DBA, explains the numerous reasons why many executives do not want to be coached toward change. “The coach must help the executive uncover his or her intrinsic motivation to change,” Albrecht states. “In other words, find a reason they would change this behavior even if they were not being pressured to change.”

In a focus on technology, Kathleen Greer writes on the “Top 10 Well-being Apps.” She describes each of these leading apps for 2017, and includes a primer on how they were evaluated for this list.

Finally, Jeff Harris, John Maynard, Marina London, and Mark Attridge offer important practice insights and observations in their respective columns. Happy reading.