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Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

While there are many benefits to having highly intelligent employees, most leaders have become aware of the fact that workplace success depends even more on the ability to use another invaluable personality trait: emotional intelligence.

What is emotional intelligence?

Although a lot of research have been done on the subject, and various EQ (emotional intelligence) models exist, there is a distinct common thread between all. Herewith two definitions of the subject:

  1. The capacity for recognising our own feelings and those of others, for motivating ourselves, and for managing emotions in ourselves and in our relationships.  (Goleman, 1998)
  2. Emotional intelligence is a set of emotional and social skills that collectively establish how well we (a) perceive and express ourselves, (b) develop and maintain social relationships, (c) cope with challenges and (d) use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way.  (EQ-I 2.0 Model, 2011)
Why does emotional intelligence matter more than IQ in success in life and in the workplace?

To be effective in the workplace, it is not only about how smart we are, or our training, experience or expertise, but also – very importantly – about how well we handle ourselves and each other (Daniel Goleman, 1998).

According to EQ research, success is strongly influenced by personal qualities such as perseverance, self-control, and building effective relationships with others. People with high EQ are better able to work in teams, adjust to change and be flexible.

In his books ”Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More than IQ” and ”Working With Emotional Intelligence”, Daniel Goleman presents five categories of emotional intelligence. To hire candidates who will thrive in your workplace, look for those who have a handle on these five pillars. How developed would you rate yourself on these pillars?

  1. Self-awareness: If a person has a healthy sense of self-awareness, he understands his own strengths and weaknesses, as well as how his actions affect others. A person who is self-aware, is usually better able to handle and learn from constructive criticism than one who is not.
  2. Self-regulation: Persons with a high EQ can maturely reveal their emotions and exercise restraint when needed. Instead of squelching their feelings, they express them with restraint and control.
  3. Motivation Emotionally intelligent people are self-motivated. They’re not motivated simply by money or a title. They are usually resilient and optimistic when they encounter disappointment and driven by an inner ambition.
  4. Empathy: Persons who have empathy, have compassion and an understanding of human nature that allows them to connect with other people on an emotional level. The ability to empathize allows a person to provide great service and respond genuinely to others’ concerns.
  5. People skills: People who are emotionally intelligent are able to quickly build rapport and trust with others on their teams. They avoid power struggles and backstabbing. They usually enjoy other people and have the respect of others around them.
Emotional intelligence in the workplace

Think of a co-worker / manager you worked with who was not very effective or who you did not get along with well… Was it because of his/her lack of technical ability, or was it because of the manner in which they handled themselves? Were they unable to effectively manage their stress levels, did they come across too assertive, were they unempathetic, did they not try to build mutually satisfying relationships, and did they not have any insight to their own developmental areas? The latter can be an indication of under-developed emotional intelligence.

Emotional intelligence is of significant importance in the workplace, and especially for leadership development. A good leader should be able to create a work environment where each person feels relevant and motivated to succeed.

We use our emotional intelligence skills to manage ourselves and to effectively interact with others. Unlike IQ, we CAN develop our emotional intelligence through coaching.

Improve your emotional intelligence today!

Joubert & Associates make use of the EQ-i 2.0 assessment to provide a holistic picture of an individual’s current emotional intelligence status. From there, specific EQ competencies are identified and developed through a coaching process with our in-house industrial psychologist.  Contact us to enquire about our unique coaching programs to develop and improve your emotional intelligence!

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