Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

In the past, jobs were about muscles, now they’re about brains,

but in the future they’ll be about the heart.

-Minouche Shafik-

Director, London School of Economics

The current movement from a control and command type of leadership to a more empowering and collaborative servant leadership style is both undeniable and highly efficacious.  And focusing on relationships rather than transactions is the ticket.  Intellect and technical expertise alone are no longer the hallmarks of leadership.  It’s the people skills that will trump the former every time.  These people skills or relational abilities have been codified into the term, Emotional Intelligence (EQ).  

According to Daniel Goleman, PhD who coined the term, EQ is comprised of 5 skillsets that enable the best leaders to maximize their own and others’ performance (and I would add job satisfaction and enjoyment):

  • Self-Awareness: Knowing one’s strengths, weaknesses, drives, values, and impact on others
  • Self-Regulation:  Controlling or redirecting disruptive impulses and moods
  • Motivation:  Relishing achievement for its own sake
  • Empathy:  Understanding other people’s emotional makeup
  • Social Skill:  Building rapport with others to move them in desired directions
  • We can strengthen these abilities through persistence, practice, and feedback from colleagues and coaches.

So what do these skills look like in practice?

  • Self-Awareness:  Self-confidence; realistic self-appraisal; ability to laugh at oneself; thirst for constructive feedback
  • Self-Regulation:  Trustworthiness; integrity; comfort with ambiguity and change
  • Motivation:  Passion for the work itself and for new challenges; unflagging energy to improve; optimism in the face of failure
  • Empathy:  Expertise in attracting and retaining talent; ability to develop others; sensitivity to cross-cultural differences
  • Social Skill:  Effectiveness in leading change; persuasiveness; extensive networking; expertise in building and leading teams

Emotional Intelligence can be learned and enhanced but it takes focus, time and commitment.  A review of my past 3 blogs will help set the stage for a focus on EQ development of enhancement. 

Weekly Challenge:  Conduct an assessment of where you stand on each of the 5 components of EQ.  Rate yourself on a scale of 1-4 with 4 being best.  Consider working on areas in which you rated yourself at a 1 or 2. 

Supporting your Success,