The concept of emotional intelligence emerged in the 1990s, but it’s always been important. We just didn’t always have a name for it!
While emotional intelligence is crucial for everyone, the characteristics of emotional intelligence might be even more important for leaders. As a matter of fact, emotional intelligence is now considered a top leadership quality.
We’re here to talk about why emotional intelligence is so important. Read on to learn more.
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What Is Emotional Intelligence?
Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and evaluate (and often control) one’s own emotions. Instead of reacting to a stimulus right away, someone with high emotional intelligence takes time to assess the situation and respond carefully.
People with high emotional intelligence also understand others. An important facet of emotional intelligence is empathy. Leaders with high emotional intelligence are able to understand what their employees are feeling even if their words are unclear.
So what are the benefits of emotional intelligence in leadership?
It Improves Self-Regulation
It’s stressful to lead, and stress can often lead to emotional instability and outbursts. If one thing goes wrong at work, it’s easy to fly off the handle.
A leader with high emotional intelligence will be able to take a step back and self-regulate before reacting or making any decisions. This can lead to better outcomes.
Imagine that you or one of your employees has made a mistake with a client contract. It seems to have set you back. You get angry, scrap the project, and penalize your employee.
If you had taken a step back, you may have realized that the error was smaller than it looked. With one small change, you could have made the project better than ever, but instead, you decided to start over and hurt a valuable employee.
Self-regulation is a game-changer.
It Improves Collaboration and the Overall Workplace Dynamic
When a leader has good emotional intelligence, they’ll likely spread that through their team. If an entire team is full of people with great emotional intelligence, workplace collaboration, and the dynamic as a whole, will improve.
People will be able to collaborate on projects with fewer conflicts. If there is a conflict, it will be easier to resolve.
People will be more understanding of each other’s needs in the workplace and it will be an overall healthier dynamic.
Leaders should consider hiring a speaker, like this physician speaker, to speak to them and their employees about emotional intelligence in the workplace.
It May Lower Workplace Stress
Workplace burnout is more common than ever. If you want to keep your employees happy, you need to find ways to decrease their stress. Emotional intelligence in leadership can help.
When you’re able to empathize with your employees, you’ll notice more of their stressors and even catch on to when they’re feeling burnt out, even if they’re not telling you.
Noticing and evaluating stressors is only half of the battle, but employees will appreciate that you’re trying to put yourself in their shoes. You’ll be able to work together to find solutions that will help the team as a whole.
Emotional Intelligence: One of the Top Leadership Qualities
You can’t underestimate the importance of emotional intelligence in the workplace. If you want to be a good leader, you need to display empathy and self-awareness.
How will you improve your emotional intelligence so you can be a better leader?
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