The term “Emotional Intelligence” was created in the 1990s. It’s a relatively new concept. But scholars, leaders, and psychologists all quickly came to the conclusion that a strong EQ can lead to personal, professional and business success. So, what is Emotional Intelligence?
What is Emotional Intelligence (EQ versus IQ)
Emotional Intelligence is “the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others.” It’s the “emotions” side of the equation, where IQ (Intelligence Quotient) is the intellectual side. While IQ can be measured through testing, there is not a similar, standard evaluation of EQ (although, there are plenty of online quizzes: here here here). Emotional Intelligence is a concept that is gaining importance in both interpersonal skills and leadership skills, both of which can be vitally important to small business success.
CEOs and business owners often carry high IQs but can lack in the EQ side of leadership. Evidence of this is high turnover, low team morale, and high stress — in both the leader and their employees. Luckily, EQ can be learned.
According to Tarley Deal, certified Emotional Intelligence coach and trainer, “It’s no longer about understanding information as much as it is about understanding ourselves, which leads to understanding people. Emotionally Intelligent individuals are in high demand as leaders and are catalysts for positive change.”
What are the five components of emotional intelligence?
Source: Cognitive Institute
There are five components of Emotional Intelligence:
- Self Awareness: Being able to identify and understand your own feelings.
- Self-Regulation: Being able to control your emotions. This control keeps one from lashing out or reacting in an emotional way to others.
- Motivation: This is your drive to achieve your personal and professional goals, above and beyond simple rewards. It’s striving for fulfillment.
- Empathy: Empathy goes one step further than awareness of another’s feelings (sympathy). Empathy is the ability to really understand, even feel, how another person is feeling.
- Social Skills: Good social skills are rooted in being a great communicator. When a business owner communicates well with their team, they build better, more productive relationships with their team.
When you’re able to combine these elements together into a strong emotional intelligence, you’ll be able to create a more productive environment, build a stronger team and create business success.
Emotional Intelligence in Business
So, why is emotional intelligence important in business? Because your business is a group of people that includes any employees, customers, vendors, suppliers, and others such as bankers, advisors, etc. Each and every interaction with those people is an exercise in Emotional Intelligence. The more developed you are in the five areas above, the better you’ll lead your people and manage your processes. You’ll dial into your customers’ needs and understand what drives them. This all leads to a business that runs more efficiently and is connected to its market. That leads to long-term success.
Check out these interesting stats on EQ (Source: Entrepreneur.com):
- People with higher EQ make more money, $29k more on average
- Safety: Lost-time accidents decreased by 50%
- More Profits: 22% growth versus average 15%
- 90% of high performers are high in EQ
The bottom line is that you have another great way to improve your business — higher emotional intelligence.
Have a question? Contact William Rogers.