Front Desk

Impaired Executive Cases Can Be Complex

By Maria Lund, LEAP, CEAP


Impaired executive cases are often the most complex and highly visible cases we work with as EA professionals. Whitney Stone, LPC, and Robert Mines, PhD, an EA expert with more than 30 years’ experience working with C-Suite clients, address this seldom-reported topic in our headline article. Due to the complexity of these cases, the authors explain that it may be necessary for the EAP to form a multi-disciplinary team to address all of the necessary concerns. They also use a case study to illustrate the psychological, legal, HR, and ethical intricacies often involved when an executive is impaired.

Highlighting a landmark event that took place at EAPA’s 2015 World EAP Conference in San Diego, Jeff Gorter, MSW, follows up on the first EAP Critical Incident Response (CIR) Summit. The goal of the summit was to begin a dialogue around the question, “What do corporate customers really want when they ask for a CIR?” Through keynotes, a customer panel, and workgroups, participants examined CIR from an organizational perspective. Several key themes emerged that should prove very useful as EA professionals seek to expand the value of their services.

Employee assistance professionals in Portugal, South Africa, and China share important EAP findings and trends from their respective countries that shed important insights about EAP challenges and evolution around the globe. Liliana Dias, Lourie Terblanche, PhD, and Peizhong Li, PhD, respond to questions such as, “What is the greatest challenge you currently face in your job?” and, “What is the greatest opportunity you see for the EAP field in your country?”

Jennifer Sumiec, CEAP, writes about workplace culture, pointing out that many employer programs and benefits, including EAPs, are sometimes too focused on the individual and fail to consider the broader cultural climate of an organization. She describes how assessing workplace culture is crucial to delivering effective EAP services.

Bern Beidel, M.Ed., CEAP, states that applying a decision-making model with demonstrated success in resolving ethical dilemmas brings consistency to EAP consultations while also being of considerable value to corporate clients. Bern adds that this model works in both organizational and individual cases.

Elsewhere, Mark Attridge and Marina London offer useful insights and observations in their respective columns. Happy New Year, and happy reading!