Asia

The Enneagram in China

To understand how the Enneagram in being used in organizations throughout mainland China and Hong Kong, it is important to first understand the Chinese culture and environment. Many people believe in fate, something that is predetermined by the year, month, day, time, minute, or second individuals are born. This gives us the DNA for the good fortune or how we will experience life, including our personality, wealth, health, and more. In addition, while Western medicine emphasizes data and finding solution for symptoms of diseases, Chinese medicine is based on a number of concepts that all stress holism, systems understanding, polarities, and integration and balance.

From the Chinese cultural perspective, all things are interconnected and interdependent; therefore, looking at things in isolation does not make sense. For example, Laozi, the father of Taoism, said: “Everything is embedded in yin (阴) and embraces yang (阳); through qi (vital energy), it reaches harmony.” Chinese medicine is based on the five elements – wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. With the Enneagram’s ancient Asian roots and its holistic perspective – for example, the Head, Heart, and Body Centers and the need to access and integrate these – it’s no wonder that the Enneagram appeals to us.

Personal Growth and the Importance of Relationships
In China, Confucian tradition operates in the context of self-cultivation, and self-cultivation is a precondition for individuals to enter into the larger social networks. In addition, Chinese society is built on a strong trust within the family; people prefer to know one another in order develop the necessary affect-based interpersonal trust required to conduct business or to engage in other activities. The vast economic growth in China (mainland) and Hong Kong over the past 30 years has created a need for people to expand their social networks and enhance their ability to work with others at all levels. This, in turn, has encouraged training focused on personal growth and relationship enhancement. The Enneagram is ideally suited to do this.

The Enneagram: Its Use in Organizations
Major Enneagram teachers – for example, Don Riso and Russ Hudson, Helen Palmer, David Daniels, Ginger Lapid-Bodga, Jerry Wagner, and Michael Goldberg – have visited China and Hong Kong over the past ten years and taught the Enneagram as well as focused on its wide variety of business applications. These programs have created a great interest in learning about the Enneagram system and how to use it in organizations. The Enneagram’s primary business applications include coaching, the training of coaches, and professional training programs for employees and leaders in areas such as communication, teamwork, and leadership.

The newly created International Enneagram Association China offers Enneagram enthusiasts and professionals the opportunity to come together monthly and share their perspectives, theory, and practical ideas as well as to host International IEA-China conferences, the first one taking place in Fall 2009.

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The Enneagram in KOREA

The Enneagram was introduced to Korea about 30 years ago, from the ministers, pastors, and priests who had learned about the system while in the United States. Subsequently, university professors with degrees in management, psychology, and education started teaching the Enneagram to their students, and undergraduate institutions as well as graduate schools adopted the Enneagram as part of their curriculum. Within the next 10 years, it is likely that most colleges and universities will enthusiastically adopt the Enneagram.

Within the last five years, an increasing number of businesses are using the Enneagram, particularly in the area of leadership development. In 2007, Dr. Ginger Lapid-Bogda, on OD specialist, conducted the first Train-the-Trainer course on the Enneagram’s business applications, and the Enneagram has started to spread widely through educational organizations, as well as nonprofit and for-profit organizations.

In Korea, the Enneagram’s theory and practice has been influenced by the work of G.I. Gurdjieff, Oscar Ichazo, Claudio Naranjo, Bob Ochs, Helen Palmer, Ginger Lapid-Bogda, Don Riso, and Russ Hudson, and the Gurdjieff movements (sacred dances) are becoming increasingly popular. Korea became an affiliate of the International Enneagram Association in 2008, providing a way for Enneagram professionals and those who study the Enneagram for their own personal and professional development to come together.

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The Enneagram in Thailand

The Enneagram was first introduced in 2000 by Santikaro, an American Buddhist monk living in Thailand at the time. For the first few years, it was taught to a small circle of people interested in self-development and to some non-profit organizations. After many translations of Enneagram books were published, more and more people and organizations have come to know and use the system.

The essence of the Enneagram is in parallel with that of Buddhism practice here – letting go of ego fixation. In addition, other typologies are not yet widely used, and most people have a positive view of this new approach called the Enneagram. However, the main reason for the increasing applications of the Enneagram is its practical benefits.

Currently, the Enneagram is widely used in many industries – finance and securities, health care, trading, manufacturing, real estate, logistics, energy, academia, etc. Put simply, any organization that is run by people. Primary applications are in the areas of interpersonal relationship, team-building, communication, and leadership development.

Kbank, one of the top three commercial banks in the country, has included the Enneagram in its training roadmap for all team leaders and management across the bank. By understanding their colleagues' Enneagram styles, they have more tolerance of their individual difference and know how to approach and communicate with each other more effectively. In the internal phone directory of the Human Resource Division, they have their Enneagram number printed after their extension number. In another division, each employee has their Enneagram number printed on the reverse side of their ID card.

Other companies that also use the Enneagram report the same benefits. Thus, word of mouth about this is spreading the Enneagram to many more organizations and in an increasing number of business applications.

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Gloria Hung is the founder of Magnet International Training and Consulting Co. Ltd. She previously held various positions in marketing, strategic planning, logistics development, customer relationships, and general management for fourteen years at APL (America President Lines Co. Ltd).

For over twelve years, Gloria has specialized in coaching skills training and applications, organizational uses of the Enneagram, team building, performance management, and coaching. In addition, she delivered training programs on coaching technology in HKUSPACE (Foundation Certification Course in Life Coaching) from 2003-2009. She is the director for Enneagram Institute of Hong Kong and studied with Don Riso and Russ Hudson for ten years; she also served as a mentor for students in Warwick University's MBA programs. Gloria has studied with Ginger Lapid-Bodga since 2006 and sponsors a variety of excellent Enneagram teachers to offer their programs in Hong Kong, China.

Personal Statement
"It is a delight for me to make a significant contribution in bringing the Enneagram to greater China for personal and professional development because the Enneagram offers such profound insights for self-knowledge and opportunities for development. My greatest pleasure is to translate Enneagram theory into practical applications so that coaching becomes more effective and its invaluable lessons become accessible to people who are committed to making their personal and professional lives extraordinary."




Dr. Hwan-Young Kim obtained a doctoral degree in education from Han-yang University and has been giving lectures at colleges and graduate schools in HRD, organization development, coaching, and other areas of management and human behavior. He earned his reputation by offering programs and lectures on management and leadership training and has been consulting since 1990.

Dr. Kim is a representative of META Consulting, Inc, a professional member of International Enneagram Association, and is president of the International Enneagram Association in Korea. He is also a Registered Corporate Coach of the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches and a Trainer of Thomas Crane's THOC Coaching Program. He now conducts executive and Enneagram coaching to managers in Korea. In addition, Dr. Kim is a neuro-linguistic programming trainer, teaches the Emotional Freedom Technique, Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, mindfulness meditation, and more.

He met Dr. Ginger Lapid-Bogda in 2000 and learned about the Enneagram from her. Since then, he has been studying the Enneagram systematically, translating many books and conducting numerous Enneagram workshops. Dr. Kim has recently translated What Type of Leader Are You? (Ginger Lapid-Bogda, Ph.D.), The Heart of Coaching (Thomas Crane), and The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership Workbook (Dr. John Maxwell).




Wajasit (Wa) is an International Enneagram Association-accredited teacher and has studied the Enneagram extensively with many teachers, including Santikaro, Helen Palmer, David Daniels, Ginger Lapid-Bogda, and Jerry Wager.

An accomplished Enneagram trainer, coach, and consultant, Wa has taught the Enneagram to thousands of people throughout Thailand in a wide variety of industries - for example, health care, finance, retail, hospitality, telecommunications, and transportation. Adept at teaching all the business applications of the Enneagram, he also has special expertise and keen interest in leadership development.

Wa is also the founder of Siam Enneagram Consulting Limited, a company dedicated to making the Enneagram's applications to business accessible to companies throughout Thailand. In addition, he is the translator and publisher of Ginger Lapid-Bogda's Enneagram-business books in Thai.