Emotional intelligence, commonly known as EQ, is now considered as a major tool for leadership success. But what is emotional intelligence and how do leaders of today develop this skill? There are three things a leader must know to master this excellent tool contained in this article – knowing what is emotional intelligence, how does it affect leadership excellence, and how does EQ translate to leadership success.
What is Emotional Intelligence?
Emotional intelligence is a fairly new concept in the field of psychology. It is the ability of a person to invoke and utilize emotions to achieve desired results, in himself or herself and others as well. Popularized by Daniel Goldman in his book Emotional Intelligence, it involves self-awareness and the ability to handle personal emotions responsibly and calibrate one’s responses to the emotions of others.
Compared to IQ, which deals with a person’s intellectual aptitude, emotional intelligence focuses on the affective aspect of the person. Thus we often hear emotions, relationships and empathy as the central themes used to describe situations in the emotional intelligence arena.
Considering the immense variability of situations involving emotions, it may be very difficult to categorically measure its effectiveness. Unlike IQ, whose standards are fairly well-established, effectiveness of emotional intelligence largely depends on how a person feels towards specific circumstances.
Emotional Intelligence and Leadership Excellence
Leadership comes with different theories and principles in which emotional intelligence is one critical factor of success. Result-oriented leaders are often considered as having high IQ but score very low in EQ. Good leaders are equally concerned with both people and results, which indicate high levels of EQ and IQ.
Some say that emotional intelligence is inherent while others say it could be developed over time. Just like leadership ability, EQ is a skill, which can be developed when one puts himself or herself to it. It may take some time, depending on one’s efforts and practical application.
EQ = Success
We all know that today’s leaders are more prone to work-related stress which contributes to the high rate of failure. People with strong EQ are less likely to develop emotional disorders like stress, and have the ability to go through difficult times. They are also more open to varying situations and are more adaptable, with the ability to understand more than others who have low emotional intelligence.
Leaders with high rating on emotional intelligence are said to have a “heart.” They are the “come-to” in difficult times, always ready with a listening ear or a shoulder to cry on. Because of their strong emotional intelligence quotient, these leaders develop a good social standing no matter where they are placed.
In these demanding days and high competition, companies need to develop their leaders to possess strong intellectual abilities, and a high degree of emotional intelligence. Knowing what EQ is may not be enough. It should bring leaders to further enhance their emotional EQ with the aim of achieving leadership excellence. Only then can we conclude that emotional intelligence is equivalent to success, particularly in leadership aspects.
– Rey Misoles