Why you should be focusing on emotional intelligence in the workplace30 Mar 2021
In the workplace, everyone should be treated with respect and deference, but there are still too many situations in which managers or employees can be inadvertently dismissive of co-workers or clients. When that happens, it's bad for everyone involved, so it's vital that you ensure your entire team has a high level of emotional intelligence.
Often, people may feel marginalised or disrespected due to something another person does without the latter individual even realising the misstep they've made. The consequences can hold you back from enjoying all of the success you want. Read on to find out more about why emotional intelligence — sometimes called EQ — matters so much, and why you should do everything you can to promote it:
Getting everyone on the same page
In short, EQ is being able to identify emotions in others and yourself, and react appropriately to those feelings. This is obviously useful in many aspects of life. In business, it's truly effective in helping people make better decisions, deal with difficult or stressful situations, and generally be able to work together more effectively, according to Verywell Mind.
You no doubt recognise how important these things are, and how closely tied to performance they can be, and that requires both increased self-awareness and empathy for colleagues, leaders, clients, suppliers and more.
Improve communication and relationships
Once you have everyone on the same page due to a higher organisational EQ, it becomes easier to avoid conflict and continually build stronger ties in business and personal relationships. Positive Psychology noted that this, in turn, helps ensure that everyone communicates clearly and in a way that always allows them to put their best foot forward, helping to make a single team or entire organisation more efficient and effective.
This certainly doesn't mean everything will always flow smoothly for your company, but another benefit of emotional intelligence — specifically related to self-awareness — is that when things go in an unexpected direction, everyone is more likely to react appropriately and share the motivation to get things back on the right track. In effect, higher EQ means better relationships, which makes people want to work harder for one another.
Avoid conflicts, or resolve them more easily
When managers and workers have higher EQ levels overall, they will both have a better understanding of the things that cause them to feel negative emotions, and what might adversely effect teammates. When that's the baseline level of operation, conflict is naturally less likely to crop up in the first place. As Bamboo HR pointed out, conflict is never totally avoidable — but EQ helps your organisation navigate it with greater ease.
For instance, suppose a conflict arises because two people working a project have competing visions for how it should be completed, and the team as a whole picks Person A's idea to move forward. Even with the right amount of EQ, Person B might be upset about the decision, and that's natural. But they will be able to tap the skills they have developed to see that if everyone picked the other idea, there was likely more merit to it, and that they will still contribute positively despite the adverse initial reaction.
When you want to make sure you and your staff have all the tools you need to promote and continually build upon a culture of EQ within your organisation, it's always a good idea to turn to the experts. At ICML, we offer an Emotional Intelligence Course specially designed for this topic, which can be tailored to fit your team's unique needs. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how you can start this journey together.