According to several studies around 75% of the reasons why leaders succeed or fail are Emotional Intelligence related. These reasons include things like leaders (and managers too) are perceived to be self centred, they don’t relate well to others, they don’t inspire or build talent, they are defensive or arrogant. Similarly, you hardly ever hear that someone resigned because her boss was not competent enough in book keeping or did not know the company’s products well enough.
What is Emotional Intelligence (EI)? One definition of EI is “Person’s ability to manage his personality.” This includes behavioural things like how I manage conflict, how I trust people or do I see things in optimistic, pessimistic or realistic light?
Another level of EI is the awareness. Awareness consists of you being aware of your own intuitions, feelings and body sensations. It also, even more importantly, includes your ability to be aware of other people (their intuitions, feelings and body sensations). Some people simply call it empathy, but I prefer awareness, because awareness has more in it than plain empathy.
There is one more fundamental level of Emotional Intelligence. That is called self regard and regard of others. This means unconditional acceptance of yourself and other people, as persons. You may think this level as mindset of accepting you and others as they are – “I am OK, no matter what happens” and “You are OK, no matter what you happens.” Obviously you can and will not accept everything others (or you yourself) do. This is the crucial difference, i.e. your ability to separate someone’s being and doing. Do not criticise being of someone (you are….) but rather the actions of someone (this thing your did….).
How to become a better leader or manager?
Remember that according to several studies 75% of the reasons why leaders succeed or fail are Emotional Intelligence related. Therefore by increasing your EI you will be able to access the largest untapped potential for your growth – 75% vs. 25%.
What can you do in practice to improve you EI? One part, or maybe the most important part, of being emotionally intelligent is the awaress. This includes both self awareness and awareness of other people. That is very logical indeed. Why? People do not always speak out what they think or they do not tell you when they are not doing well or when they are doing well. Also our beliefs, role models and social pressure have a skewing effect on what people speak out and what they don’t. Being able to notice such situations help you tremendously to address the issues behind early enough. Then again in addressing these situations you will need other EI skills, like trust and conflict handling abilities….and in order to feel confident in the whole process you need to believe in yourself and others which means you need high self regard and regard for others.
Improving your EI
There is a proven process for assessing and improving your EI. That consist of online questionnaire, a detailed report based on your answers and related coaching to identify your biggest potential. This tool was developed by JCA Occupational Psychologists (www.jcaglobal.com). Join the many people who have already done the online assessment and related coaching and enjoyed improvements in their working and private lives. I am certified JCA EI coach. If you are interested of hearing more, drop me an email: Juhana.Lampinen@innotiimi.com
I wish you great week at work and a lot of fun in improving your EI.