Emotional intelligence is a unique ability bestowed upon or acquired by Individuals to understand, control and regulate their emotions. It impacts different aspects of our daily life such as our behavior and interaction with others. It also prepares us to perceive and react to the emotions and feelings of others .emotional intelligence is measured by emotional intelligence quotient. It primarily gives a measure of one’s ability to use, understand and manage emotions in ways that positively affect oneself and others, and help in relieving stress, communicating effectively, showing empathy resolving conflicts and overcoming challenges.
Emotional intelligence is an important personality trait that enables us to recognize our own emotions and understand how they may affect others around us. It involves understanding the perceptions of others which helps ineffective management of our relationship. Whether we are in the office or at home, the ability to engage with friends and colleagues and interpret their emotions is essential for professional excellence, social acceptability, and personal contentment. The emotionally intelligent working environment is the backbone of amiable social life and professional excellence. It enhances people’s competence and makes them more supportive, healthy and productive. Psychologist worldwide hold different views about the inherent nature or otherwise of emotional intelligence. Some believe it is something which can be groomed or nurtured, whereas others feel it is an instinctive behavior.
Need for Emotional Intelligence
Certain important aspects of a person’s life are greatly affected by the level of a person’s emotional intelligence. Some of these aspects are explained below :
- Professional excellence: Higher EI is a great motivating factor in life. It helps us achieve many things professionally and socially. We plan and lead our career in a better way by setting new goals and working hard to achieve them, engaging people and thus contributing to the growth of our employer or our own business.
- Physical wellness: EI has a direct correlation with our physical and mental wellness. In other words, EI plays a significant role in maintaining our body and nervous system in good shape. It helps improve our stress management and strengthens our immune system.
- Mental health: Poor management of emotions leads to psychological disorders and other serious ailments. EI keeps us mentally alert and calm. It is a great help in tackling stress and mood swings and generating creative ideas.
- Relationship management: By understanding our emotions, we can better reciprocate to others ‘ feelings and moods. In this respect, EI makes it easy for us to engage with new people and share our ideas with them. It brings compatibility among the members of groups and teams and empowers them to work and deliver effectively.
- Leadership: Research has proved that those who show outstanding leadership at the workplace or in any other field are endowed with a high level of EI. Leadership comes naturally to such people as they understand, motivate and build a strong rapport with people across an organization. This aspect of EI makes them acceptable as leaders of choice to everyone.
- Crisis management: EI brings people closer. So it helps people working in groups resolve their conflicts and misunderstandings amicably preventing any blow-ups. With this ability, they are open and receptive to each other and try to control explosive situations swiftly.
Intelligence Quotient Versus Emotional Quotient
Generally, people strive to have a high intelligence quotient thinking that it is all they need to be successful. Not long ago, the business world used to emphasize that smart and dynamic leaders with high IQ were the only people capable of writing the success story of growth and fame of companies. But soon they realized that professionals with high IQ may not always be the right choice for building successful businesses. Research shows that 85% of our financial success is because of skills in human engineering, our personality and ability to communicate, negotiate and lead. Alarmingly, only 15% of financial success is because of technical knowledge. Therefore, a high IQ would improve marginally the prospects of a successful life. IT is EQ that is an essential ingredient of social and personal bliss. There are many examples of leaders worldwide who are technically sound and who are acclaimed for their high IQ, but they are frustrated and unsatisfied with themselves regardless of their high IQ level. People with high EQ are poised, outgoing, committed, sympathetic, empathetic, caring and comfortable with themselves and those around them. Having a good IQ with good EQ is like having a good frosting on the cake.
Components of Emotional Intelligence
Daniel Goldman, in his landmark book Emotional intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ, argues that we need a special kind of competence that he called emotional intelligence to conduct ourselves and interact with others effectively- whether to work in teams, to overcome difference or to motivate people for achieving goals. He proposes the following five components of EI which have become essential guiding principles for any professional to practice meaningfully in the workplace:
- Recognizing emotions
- Understanding emotions
- Regulating emotions
- Motivating yourself
- Using emotions/ managing relationship
Competencies of Emotional Intelligence
The five components of EI proposed by Goldman are generally grouped in the following four clusters:
- Self- management
- Social awareness
- Relationship management
These four clusters are categorized into the following two broad categories of EI :
- Personal competencies
- Social competencies
The first three components of EI ( recognizing emotions, understanding emotions and regulating emotions) fall into personal competencies. And, of the four competencies of EI, listed above, the first two –self-awareness and self -management – come under the category of personal competencies.
The best virtue that you can have is to become self-aware. It is the power to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. Being self-aware means you can perfectly feel and accurately understand the level of your own emotions and how they reflect on your behavior and performance. Self- confidence is an important aspect of self-awareness that guides and trains your emotions in a way that you feel comfortable and competent in whatever situation that comes up in life. Professionals with strong self-awareness know what their behavior is, how it affects others and how it drives them and their productivity. People with strong self – awareness are:
- Aware of their strengths and weakness
- Self-believers and are capable of learning from experience
- Open to candid feedback and a new perspective
- Always honest to themselves and others
- Able to speak directly and correctly
- Capable of reacting sensibly, neither over- critical nor over – joyous
- Interested in continuous learning and self – developments
- Able can show a sense of humor and a better perspective about themselves
Self-management is built on the understanding that has been gained by self – awareness. It involves controlling emotions and not allowing them to control you. In other words, it can be termed as self – control which includes maintaining equilibrium while facing any problem or provocation. It is important because it establishes your trustworthiness and conscientious. It also reflects on how motivated and how optimistic you are. People with great self-management show several noteworthy virtues some of which are described below :
- Self- control: It is your ability to remain composed and balanced whatever the situation you are in. It is your capacity to keep unruly thoughts and impulses under control. People endowed with self-control effectively manage their impulsive feelings urges and distressing emotions.
- Trustworthiness: trustworthiness implies that you always stick to your words and people always look for and trust your wisdom
- Conscientiousness: It is the quality of being a highly caring and competent employee. People with this quality attempt to set new standards in professionalism and excel in every task they undertake.
- Adaptability: it is one’s capability to adapt and adjust oneself to prevailing circumstances. It is a much-needed job skill, as workplace needs you to handle various job responsibilities and as the office culture is becoming more diverse.
- Orientation towards achievement: It refers to the driving forces in an individual to raise their excellence bar to new heights they challenge themselves.
- Initiative: it refers to one’s ability to identify new opportunities and execute them proficiently. People with ability are enterprising and proactive.
Social competencies enhance our abilities to interact positively and get along well with people using a range of skills aimed at resolving conflict these competencies help to expand your awareness to include the emotions of the people around you. social competencies are divided into two clusters called social awareness and relationship management.
- Social Awareness: social awareness is the key to understanding others’ perspective, to realize the needs of an organization and to serve the needs of the client .. it is significant to appreciate differences and similarities among people to create a cohesive working environment.
- Empathy:– it refers to one’s ability to see the world from other people’s perspective and discerning what they are thinking by putting oneself in their shoes. Empathy is the skill to engage with and relate to others.
- Organizational Awareness: it is the ability to know what is happening across the organization. It enables one to understand organizational structure, culture and dynamics, power relationships and organisational issues.
- Service Orientation: it is how your liberal social standing or reach helps you serve better business interests of your organization. They can identify issues that hamper the organization.
- Relationship Management: your powerless to manage people and work with people effectively makes you a magnetic professional and great team leader. It’s your effective relationship management across the organizational hierarchy that sets you ahead of your peers and helps you win accolades. following skills are key for successful relationship management
- Influence: most vibrant relationship management skills are your ability to influence others. It is reflected in the way you get along with others through your arguments and behavior.
- Leadership: quality of being people-friendly leader make you acceptable to one and all in the organization
- Developing others: it refers to your ability to make your team members or colleagues perform to the best of their abilities.
- Communication: it refers to your ability to communicate and build bonds with people and bring new clients and more profit to the organization. open communication climate improves the loyalty of the staff, creates healthy relationships and enhance productivity.
To develop EI you should focus on acquiring or improving the following personal characteristics :
- Be an optimist – positive outlook to life is everything
- Be stress-free – function properly with mental balance
- Be an eternal learner: it should be your quest to gain insight and knowledge
- Be expressive: communicate with empathy and efficiency
- Be responsible: take your task seriously and hold accountability for your actions.
The basic human nature or personality traits are hard to change but in any individual. But EI can be acquired through effective training programs. Such training is necessary because every organization needs people who manage themselves and others well, understand work dynamics and influence the workforce to achieve the organizational goals. we at SevenMentor help you become that successful manager, social leader and personally motivated person who is emotionally intelligent.
Name: Aswathi Nair
Designation: Soft-skills Trainer
Sevenmentor Pvt Ltd
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