Emotional Intelligence At Work
Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability, capacity, or skill to perceive, assess, and manage the emotions of oneself, others, and groups. Your IQ (Intelligence Quotient), technical skills, and certifications will probably get you the job, but you need soft skills like emotional intelligence to keep it. While it is advised to keep sentiments out the door at work, EI is required in and outside the workplace. You can’t be that worker that finishes his tasks on time and also the employee everyone avoids because you do not when to stop talking or how to phrase certain statements. A person with a low level of EI may outrightly tell a coworker that his new tie is ugly or state facts that while true, could make an argument flare up and get worse. When all employees have a high level of EI, it helps everyone on the team get along well and build strong professional relationships. EI helps to prevent and deflate conflicts. When there’s a disagreement between colleagues, EI helps in managing the conflict. Emotional intelligence is needed to hear and understand everyone’s side and subsequently, find solutions to the problem. In a workplace with people from diverse cultures and beliefs, EI helps everyone understand and respond to each other.
EI might be a recent addition to necessary workplace skills and some people do not yet know the key elements that make up for it and all that it encompasses. Well, since every human has emotions, and some, have bigger emotions than others, EI helps employees come face to face with their feelings and address any issues they have. This aspect is known as self-awareness. It helps people know how to regulate their feelings and when to exhibit the necessary emotions. When employees are aware of their emotions, they can be in better control of them. They need to assess their moods, the impact it has on colleagues, their triggers, and how they react in each situation. For example, a worker who realizes that a disorganized workspace affects his concentration and makes him irritable and angry at everyone has successfully recognized an emotion and its trigger. He can now make an effort towards controlling his reaction (probably by making sure his office is tidy before work starts) so that he does not scream at colleagues because he can’t find a pen. He will be able to take that step only when he is self-aware.
When an individual understands that his emotions affect his behavior and the way he acts, it means that he is already conscious of the different emotions he has. That way, he can easily control his reactions and subsequently avoid conflict. When one learns to control his emotions, it is referred to as self-regulation. It is the regulation of one’s behavior without external control or monitoring. This does not have to mean that you should shrink your personality, make yourself invisible in your office, or refuse to speak up to avoid confrontation. However, being aware of your emotions and knowing how to control them will save you the stress of always falling out with your colleagues. For instance, if you notice that you tend to get angry easily, you need a regulatory method, a means to keep your emotions in check. You could decide to keep silent when a colleague makes a scathing remark and then tell them how you feel at a later time when you are less furious. Learning how to control your emotions will help you communicate better.
When an employee has emotional intelligence, it improves his competency because he is in an understanding relationship that offers no distraction to himself and others. That invariably makes him focused on the job and provides him with passion for the job and the right attitude and mindset to work. This EI skill is known as motivation.
Another key component of EI is empathy – the identification with or understanding of the thoughts, feelings, or emotional state of another person. When an employee has empathy, he will be to discern people’s moods and how to treat them accordingly. For instance, when a colleague is feeling under the weather or had just lost a loved one and is feeling sad, empathy will help you know what to say and do to make them feel better.
EI in the workplace also requires that workmates exhibit social skills. This does not only suggest attending company dinners or being present at all team bonding activities. While those activities are important, being social requires more than that. It involves interaction with colleagues, building a healthy professional relationship, creating a connection that fosters a sense of camaraderie, and of course, listening skills and verbal and nonverbal communication. All individuals in a workplace from the CEO and team leads to every other employee and even the last person on the company’s hierarchy need all these crucial facets of EI if the workplace is to be frictionless and radiate cohesive energy.
If emotional intelligence is this important in the workplace, how do you build it? Simply by practicing! Maybe not that simple, but when you put in effort every day, you become better over time. Work on your strengths. These are the elements of EI that you possess. You may be good at using your social skills but a little laidback at showing empathy. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses and work hard to improve. We hope that this article provides you with pointers that will help you to increase your EI level.
The benefits of EI can not be overstated. It builds team spirit by aiding everyone in understanding each other. It also helps workers manage and contain themselves and carry out their duties even when they face situations that threaten to spill their emotions. Every element of EI is therefore important.
For an organization to be productive, each worker should demonstrate emotional intelligence. It starts from you, dearest reader. Assess yourself so that you can understand your emotions. Your EI skills will make you a better employee or employer and also benefit you in your relationship with others outside the workplace.