Business savvy, analytical skills, experience, and vision are all traits often associated with the best executives and organizational leaders. However, an overlooked quality found in the most successful bosses is perhaps the most critical: emotional intelligence
Emotional intelligence (sometimes referred to as EQ or EI) is the ability to comprehend, control, and develop your own feelings, while also being able to understand and manage others’ feelings. Emotional intelligence goes beyond the administrative nuts and bolts of being a great leader and emphasizes how your emotions affect others and how you can use that knowledge to create positive outcomes — both personally and with the people you manage.
EQ is a strong indicator of the level of success one can attain in life, both in the personal and business realms. If IQ tests measure logic, mathematics and reasoning, EQ determines how you will use these gifts. Of course, as in all aspects of life, you need a balance. You cannot be successful by only having high IQ or by only being emotionally intelligent. You need to find the right combination.
Emotional intelligence (EQ) combines self-awareness (understanding oneself) and empathy (the ability to feel and understand what others are feeling). High emotional intelligence is increasingly being recognized as important in organizations because of the growing complexity of society and the variety of stakeholders that must be communicated with effectively.
Emotional Intelligence can provide the backbone of that understanding that strengthens team building, productivity, morale, and more. Whatever model your workplace follows, emotional intelligence can build better leaders and help prevent employee turnover.
There are five key attributes that constitute EQ:
- Empathy for others
- Social skills
You can learn to be emotionally independent and gain the attributes that allow you to have emotional intelligence by connecting to core emotions, accepting them, and being aware of how they affect your decisions and actions.
Being able to relate behaviors and challenges of emotional intelligence on workplace performance is an immense advantage in building an exceptional team. One of the most common factors that leads to retention issues is communication deficiencies that create disengagement and doubt.
Misunderstandings and lack of communication are usually the basis of problems between most people. Failing to communicate effectively in a workplace leads to frustration, bitterness, and confusion among employees. Effective communication can eliminate obstacles and encourage stronger workplace relationships. When employees know their role within a company and understand how they benefit the overall direction and vision, there is a sense of value and accomplishment. Good communication results in alignment and a shared sense of purpose.
Emotional intelligence is a powerful tool critical for exceeding goals, improving critical work relationships, and creating a healthy, productive workplace and organizational culture.
Emotionally Intelligent leadership brings many benefits to the business. It’s already been connected with improved productivity, increased profitability, and reduced employee attrition. As businesses work to recover from the coronavirus, EQ leaders should prove to have the core characteristics needed to help employees adapt and even thrive amidst uncertainty.