International Enneagram Association (IEA)
About the IEA
The IEA has a rich history and is extremely active worldwide. In addition to being an international association of members committed to furthering the theory and applications of the Enneagram, the IEA is an expanding network of inter-connected Enneagram communities with Affiliates and Chapters in countries throughout the world.
IEA's mission is to support our members by providing opportunities for:
- Engagement with an international community of shared interests and diverse approaches
- Education in theory and application of the Enneagram
- Developing greater excellence in the use of the Enneagram
IEA's Ethical Guidelines
Encouraging the ethical use of the Enneagram is central to the mission of the IEA. All lEA members, Affiliates, and Chapters shall adhere to the IEA's General Ethical Guidelines as described below. In addition, those accredited by the IEA shall adhere to the Code of Ethics for IEA Accredited Teachers (found on the IEA website). (Note: IEA's website is always the source of IEA's official ethical guidelines.)
IEA's General Ethical Guidelines:
The Enneagram can be used by individuals and professionals from a variety of backgrounds, including educators, business consultants, artists, therapists, spiritual directors, and medical professionals; all of whom use it in an increasing range of contexts and applications. Because the Enneagram is such a powerful and profound system for understanding the human character, it is important that those who use the system with others do so in a values-based, ethical manner.
We encourage each professional to use the Enneagram within his or her areas of training and expertise. For example, we expect that business consultants would use the system for organization development, team building, and leadership training; coaches might use it with clients to help them improve their personal and interpersonal effectiveness and work performance. Neither a business consultant nor a coach would typically do psychotherapy with individuals who have serious emotional problems, such therapy being the domain of licensed psychologists and other mental health professionals. Coaches and consultants using the Enneagram should follow the same practices. Likewise, those using the Enneagram in the business arena should have some expertise in business-consulting engagements.
The Enneagram of personality types is primarily an instrument for self-knowledge and personal transformation.
Keeping a conscious focus on our motives and behavior helps avoid the common pitfalls of our type. Self-knowledge involves constant inquiry into own agendas and defenses, and transformation requires the courage to act against the structures and habits of our personality.Any individual who advertises himself or herself as an Enneagram teacher or expert shall have the requisite education in the Enneagram system to do so and shall apply the Enneagram system exclusively within their area(s) of professional expertise.
The Enneagram is a powerful and complex system that addresses human functioning and growth. As such, it is essential that every person who benefits financially from teaching or working with the Enneagram has a thorough knowledge of the system. And just as Enneagram practitioners should have a high level of knowledge of the Enneagram system, they should only teach Enneagram applications within their areas of expertise.
The Enneagram is a work in progress, so individuals shall be explicit in giving credit to the work of others. Individuals shall cite their sources when teaching and communicating about the system.
Many have contributed to it, and many will do so in the future, therefore, be explicit about giving attribution to the work of others. Name your sources and honor the originality and hard work of other contributors. We take it upon ourselves to maintain high standards of scholarship, thus promoting a collegial atmosphere in the sharing of information.
Type does not fully describe an individual.
The Enneagram does not tell us anything meaningful about a person's history or quality of character, intelligence, or talents. People are more than their Enneagram type. We recognize that awareness of this is particularly important in the workplace.
We allow others to discover themselves as much as possible.
The Enneagram has profound effects on people. It is most effective when we allow others to discover their type, rather than assuming that we know them better than they know themselves. We seek to be sensitive to their reactions, their changing picture of themselves, and their need to integrate new information.
The Enneagram inspires compassion for others; it should not be used as a tool for stereotyping people.
In seeing the intentions and logic of other types, we become less likely to dismiss, judge, or demean each other. We listen closely to individual stories, recognizing that simply knowing someone's type does not mean that we know that person. Stereotyping implies an assumption that we already know about a person's attitude and motivations. Stereotyping limits growth and opportunities in the present.
No individual owns the Enneagram.
The Enneagram cannot be controlled, monopolized, or withheld from public discussion. Restricting the right to communicate, develop and share information about the system is contrary to the IEA's spirit of being a global learning community.
The system encourages teachers and practitioners to walk the talk of transformation.
The Enneagram challenges teachers and practitioners to embody the work of transformation, to stand as living examples of self-inquiry and practical change in the service of growth.
We can and should be a source of help for one another. It is important to listen respectfully to different points of view and communicate honestly in exploring the possibilities of awakening connected with Enneagram teachings.
The Enneagram aids us in waking up from habits and recurring defensive patterns. As a learning community, we each serve to remind others of the differences among us and of the need to be respectful of different points of view. Adherence to doctrine and theory are far less important than keeping the conversation open.