Utilizing Emotional Intelligence In The Workplace

Over the past few years, emotional intelligence (“EI”) has become one of the most popular leadership theories. Many claim that it can have significant positive impacts on workplace productivity, efficiency, teamwork, communication, and more.

Many employers offer training courses in EI to their employees. Some even pay for an individualized assessment or test to gauge your personal levels of EI.

But is investing time into developing your EQ really worth it? Is this theory just another fad with no lasting benefits? Or is there actually some truth to it?

We at The Good Men Project believe that yes, developing your emotional intelligence is definitely worthwhile. Not only does doing so make you a better person, it also helps create meaningful relationships, increase overall happiness, and promote wellness.

That’s why we’ve dedicated several resources to help you develop your own internal sense of EQ. You may find someof these tips helpful for all people, not just men only.

So what are we talking about when we talk about emotional intelligence? Let us give you a brief definition first.

Emotional intelligence – or ‘emotional quotient’ (EQ) as many call it – refers to how well you perceive and manage your emotions. It is considered to be separate from cognitive intelligence (or IQ), which is knowing and applying knowledge to solve problems.

Why is emotional intelligence important in the workplace?

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

Over the past few years, emotional literacy or understanding emotions has become increasingly important to employers. Many organizations now require employees to do personal inventory by asking themselves questions about their job performance and what may be causing stress or dissatisfaction.

This process is also referred to as self-evaluation or career development. More and more companies are offering professional counseling services to help employees work through issues at home or in the office.

Emotional competence can make a big difference when it comes to employee productivity and loyalty. When an employee feels that their superiors do not respect them or look out for their well being, this will have a lasting negative effect on morale and teamwork.

Employers who value emotional intelligence promote a healthy working environment. This includes things like supporting each other’s success, acknowledging achievements, and helping one another succeed.

Link between emotional intelligence and job performance

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

Over the past few decades, there have been many studies that link emotional quotient (EQ) with workplace success. These studies indicate that being able to recognize and control your emotions is an integral part of achieving career success.

Certain traits are linked to high EQs. It’s possible to test for these traits, and if you have higher levels of them, it can help show you how to better regulate your own emotions.

Research has also shown that people who can identify and understand other peoples’ feelings are more likely to achieve success outside of work too – they’re much happier than those who don’t quite grasp the nuances of human behavior.

Ways to improve your emotional intelligence

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

Recent research has shown that having high levels of empathy is one of the most important qualities for success in the workplace. People who are able to relate to and understand what others are feeling are more likely to succeed than those who cannot.

Research also shows that it’s not just whether you can identify someone else's emotions, but how well you are at changing them. This is called "emotional quotient" or EQ.

You may know some people whose mood never changes even when things go terribly wrong, and then there are other people who are always happy regardless of circumstances. The difference between these two types of individuals is their level of emotional intelligence.

People with higher EQ tend to be happier and better adjusted socially. They are less prone to stress and anger, and are usually considered likable by those around them.

There are several ways to develop your emotional intelligence. You do not need to spend hours every day practicing skills, but small changes will make a big impact on your overall quality of life.

Recognize your emotions

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

A large part of emotional intelligence is being able to recognize your own emotions. You may not be aware that you’re feeling something at this moment, but someone else might have noticed it before you.

By paying attention to what people around you are saying and doing, you can learn a lot about them and yourself.

It’s also important to acknowledge and accept how you feel. Even if you don’t agree with an idea or situation, admitting that you’re upset or discouraged can help you move past it more quickly.

You’ll find that as your skills in emotional intelligence grow, your workplace relationships will improve. Others will trust you more and work harder for you.

Emotions connect us with one another. When they're controlled, they strengthen bonds between individuals and groups. But when there's no regulation, negative feelings spread like wildfire, creating tension and conflict.

Teach yourself

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

One of the biggest reasons why people lose motivation and desire to put in effort into things is because they stop themselves before they start.

You will not feel motivated or inspired until you make changes that require effort, time, and energy. This can be changing your career path, starting a new project, or even going beyond what you are currently doing – it does not matter.

It’s hard to get started when you don’t know what steps to take next. It’s also difficult to stay focused when you don’t have anything planned for today.

When you do these things, you begin to feel motivated and excited about taking more action. You feel like you could accomplish something soon.

This is an important reminder to be self-aware. When you recognize your emotions, you are better able to control them.

By learning how to identify your feelings and then working on getting rid of the negative ones, you will find yourself being much happier.

Practice having difficult conversations

As mentioned earlier, emotional intelligence (EI) is your ability to recognize and manage your emotions. Unfortunately, many people have trouble doing this.

When you lack this skill, it can negatively impact yourself and others around you. In fact, research has shown that people with low EI are more likely to suffer from mental health issues like anxiety or depression.

Furthermore, there’s some evidence to suggest that poor emotional regulation may be linked to workplace violence and harassment.

So how could someone with low emotional control hurt themselves or others at work?

It happens when someone feels overly stressed about something and thus lashes out physically or verbally. For example, if someone believes they were unfairly criticized, they might attack the critic or even go beyond what was said.

In these cases, their lack of self-control can play a role in the anger they feel.

Be authentic

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

It is important to be aware of your emotional intelligence so you can regulate your emotions and understand what effects your actions have on others.

People will sometimes perceive a behavior as fake or even dishonest. Because we are intuitive people, it may feel like trying hard to put on an act is making you fail at your job.

It can also make us question your sincerity when you tell us how you felt about something. We usually know whether someone is passionate or not about a topic through their behaviors.

If you’re able to identify and control your own emotions then you should think that you don’t need to worry about other people’s. But if you struggle with this, it could hurt your career and personal relationships.

Emotions play a big part in interpersonal relations. If you want to keep succeeding in your position, you must learn to manage yours.

Listen to your coworkers

utilizing emotional intelligence in the workplace

As discussed earlier, listening is one of the most important skills you can develop as an employee. It seems obvious, but many people forget this when they are around others for long periods of time.

By paying attention to what other people say and how they respond to things, you can learn a lot about them. You will also find out if they’re hiding something or if they are unhappy with their job.

If there's someone at work who isn't performing his/her duties properly, take some time to talk to him/her. Find out why he/she may be having trouble getting the job done and see if anything needs to be adjusted or changed.

You might discover that they're being forced into doing something they don't want to do or that they feel bad because of something that wasn't done correctly.

Everyone has feelings and no one is immune to feeling emotions from time to time, even if you think you aren't easily moved. If you notice that someone else is struggling, try to understand where he/ she comes from and help him/ her get through it.

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