The Collapse of Arthur Andersen: A Failure of Emotional Intelligence?

I formally presented this paper at the Seventh International Congress for Emotional Intelligence held in Perth in July 2019. In my lifetime the greatest “mistake” by a Professional Services Organisation would have to be the collapse of Arthur Andersen The company regarded as the Gold Standard in the USA for ethics and corporate governance went from 85,000 employees to 16 in 2002. In this paper I will argue that the real cause of this collapse was a failure of emotional intelligence.

The paper is structured as follows:

  1.  A summary of the history of Arthur Andersen including prevailing beliefs for its collapse.
  2.  The real reason for its collapse: the adoption of Myers Briggs (MBTI) as its people profiling methodology.
  3.  A review of the MBTI methodology.
  4.  A review of the criticisms of MBTI including its fatal flaw.
  5.  How the MBTI fatal flaw destroyed Arthur Andersen.
  6.  What are the possible emotionally intelligent people profiling systems the Professions should use?
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