There’s a lot being written about EQ or Emotional Intelligence. It is said that having a high EQ is a greater indicator of our success than having a high IQ which in itself challenges many peoples’ belief systems.
If you are a manager, leader or team member and haven’t yet explored the positive benefits of working to raise EQ, I hope that this blog will give you a taste and hunger to learn more!
So, what is EQ and why is it important?
There are 4 main components ( 5 if you read Daniel Goleman’s work – he adds Motivation.) but let’s focus on the 4 below for now!
- Self Awareness – ability to be aware of own emotions in any given moment
- Self Management- ability to manage and alter own emotional state.
- Awareness of others- people’s perspective and emotions in any given moment
- Relationship management – Ability to build rapport, communicate and relate to others effectively in any given moment.
Reflective Learning Activity:-
I invite you to:-
- Look back at the list of skills above and reflect upon your abilities in each for a moment or two.
- Think about times when you do this and times when you don’t ( we ALL have those!)
- Now think of yourself in an average day at work and consider how, upping your ability in each of the EQ skills, could enhance your experience and excellence!
- What difference would being better at each skill make to how you behave and excel?
Moving on :- what is so important about emotional intelligence and what will increasing our EQ get for us?
We are each unique and social beings, as a species we thrive in groups and thus, at home and even more so at work, with very few exceptions, interact, on a daily basis, with a multitude of other totally unique human beings.
Being Emotional beings
We are also, thank goodness emotional beings as opposed to computers or robots, we each have a fully functioning emotional spectrum and a full range of feelings that vary throughout any given day, hour or even moment!
Part of the joy of my job is working with people to help them gain insight into how they create their emotions and how to manage them more effectively. These are the first stages of developing EQ. Following this, comes coaching on how to raise awareness of others and to communicate more effectively to get better outcomes more of the time!
So- more on the whole issue of emotions:-
If you could select a way to feel from a menu of emotions, these and more would all be on your list :-
- In control
and many more…..
Rest assured, your very amazing brain, and mine, knows exactly how to create each and every one of the emotions on the menu…and a few more. You have a wonderful ability to generate the different neurochemicals that lead to different feelings and understanding this is key to developing EQ.
Quite clearly, the way that we feel in any given moment is going to impact hugely on how we filter and process information AND on how we respond, react and behave towards other human beings in your workplace or home.
(Remember at this point that all other human beings are all experiencing their own cocktail of emotions in any given moment.) This is what makes working together and communicating so interesting!
Think of a workplace scenario such as a meeting :-
If all human beings in your workplace scenario are feeling positive and are aware of self and others, can manage their state and are socially skilled – people will relate well to each other and generally be happier, functioning well and be more productive. Think what this means to wellbeing and team effectiveness at work!
If one or more of the human beings is low on EQ, feeling angry, fed up, low or anxious and NOT able to change it, oblivious their own and to the other person’s emotional state and socially unskilled, all the players will be left feeling negative and functioning below their best.
Building higher levels of EQ
When you stop to reflect on the above, it is clear that when we work on all four skills within the EQ model, we will be able to build and develop our EQ. This means that we will feel better more of the time AND be able to manage and change our state when necessary.
We will also be more aware of the emotional state of those around us, reflect on how THAT is affecting their behaviours in any given moment AND be skilled in establishing and maintaining rapport and relate well to others!
The joy of EQ is, that whilst we each have an existing level of EQ, we can enhance and develop our skills in each of the four areas. I work with many individuals and teams that do just that!
Until next time
For Executive Coaching
Contact me via www.bridgetclapham.co.uk or email direct to firstname.lastname@example.org to explore ways to enhance EQ and increase wellbeing and performance at individual, team and organisational levels.
Books and links
There are many. Here are just two from the selection available that will be of interest if you want to read more!
Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Travis Bradberry and Jean Graves is excellent. In explaining EQ and giving some strategies for development. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Emotional-Intelligence-Travis-Bradberry/dp/0974320625/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8
Daniel Goleman Emotional Intelligence. Why it can matter more than IQ http://www.amazon.co.uk/Emotional-Intelligence-Matter-More-Than/dp/0747528306/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1460554195&sr=8-1&keywords=daniel+goleman