In my view emotional intelligence doesn’t get enough credit
We know there is a difference between a high IQ and a high EQ, but society tends to pay more attention to the former.
We laud geniuses, inventors, app billionaires and moguls for their shrewdness, their intelligence and their tangible skills.
But we don’t value emotional intelligence highly enough.
I can tell you now, unless you inherit a small fortune, you’re going to need a high level of it in order to be both successful and happy in this world.
You can build the best app in the world, or the best social media service, but if you don’t have the emotional capacity to lead a team, nurture talent, know your own and your staff’s limits, then you’ll struggle.
The good news is, like most things, emotional intelligence can be developed over time, and with practice.
Here are some of the workplace habits adopted by emotionally intelligent managers.
Ask yourself as you read through: how many of these traits do you display on a regular basis?
1. They trust others
No one likes a micromanager and for good reason, too.
There is nothing worse than being hired to do a job and discovering that your boss is so insecure they want to do the work for you.
Don’t be this person.
If you need to delegate work, do so and let your team get on with the job.
Hovering and micromanaging only conveys to staff that you don’t trust them.
If this is genuinely the case, find people you do trust.
Once you have the right team on board there should be no need to micromanage as you have hired the best possible people.
Emotionally mature people know this and they step back and let others do what they need to do because they have faith in their judgment.
2. They don’t bring their anger to work
The boss who is constantly bringing problems to work, engaging in fights or heated debates with family on the phone, or complaining bitterly about their personal life around the water cooler, shows a glaring lack of emotional maturity.
This kind of behavior reveals that the person lacks the emotional capacity to separate work from home life and doesn’t respect his or her coworkers enough to consider how their bad mood will impact the work environment.
It’s also extremely unprofessional, particularly if you’re in a senior managerial role, to pass on your stress to your staff.
Emotionally mature people may have had a grinding start to the day before they arrive at work, but they go to great lengths not to transfer the bad vibes to others in the office.
There is a time, of course, when you may want to offload your problems, but it’s best kept to close friends during after-work drinks.
3. They think before they act
Annoying things happen in the business world all of the time.
But don’t be a hot head.
If you fly off the handle every time something doesn’t go your way, it has a depressing effect on the staff.
What will happen?
They’ll stop trying.
Take my word for it: if you show yourself to be an inconsistent and emotionally unbalanced leader, you’ll stop being someone that others want to follow.
Emotionally mature people take a moment to absorb the event before they react.
They pause to consider what the best response will be, thereby putting a bit of distance between the incident and their emotions.
A few deep breaths can sometimes be all you need.
4. They don’t need everyone to like them
Finally, don’t be the boss that needs everyone to like them.
It sounds like a cliché but it’s true: aim for respect, not like.
So how do you get respect from others?
You start by being true to your own principles and showing consistency in your decision making.
You make tough calls when you need to and you’re not afraid to sack someone who is clearly not pulling their weight, which sends a message to the rest of your staff that you value excellence and hard work.
You reward your best workers with regular praise and opportunities.
And in this way, you build a workforce that enjoys coming to work, gives you fewer headaches and has less staff turnover.
You may find the above traits are in short supply some days, but don’t worry.
We all fall off the horse from time to time, and these traits can all be worked on.
But the sooner you’re able to develop emotional intelligence in the workplace, the happier and more successful you will be.
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