Emotional Intelligence at Work

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Want to improve your relationships with coworkers? Learn how to build emotional intelligence to improve the workspace for everyone. Why does emotional intelligence in the workplace matter?

We need emotional intelligence (EQ) most where we’re least likely to find it: at work. The workplace remains the last bastion of IQ worship because many people still believe that getting personal interferes with productivity.

At work, you don’t have the ties of love to motivate you to get along with others as you do at home. You don’t have the benefit of a shared history to help you understand what moves those around you. That makes it all the more important that you have a way to tune in to. What those you work with need right here, right now.

You already have that facility – it’s active awareness and the empathy that flows from it. Using those elements of your EQ can help achieve success and solve problems on the job. Office politics, morale problems, and lack of cooperation don’t have to ruin your work life. If you can read and respond to people’s feelings.


The four elements of emotional intelligence

Emotional intelligence is composed of four elements: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. How well acquainted are you with each of these resources?

EQ in action at work

Self-awareness: The ability to recognize your emotions and their impact while using gut feelings to guide your decisions.

Can you walk into a room, meet a stranger, attend a meeting and quickly sense that something is not as it seems? Formerly known as “intuition,” this instinctual knowledge is based on emotional intelligence.

Self-management: the ability to control your emotions and behavior and adapt to changing circumstances.

Can you adequately harness your anger, disappointment, or fear so your emotions don’t interfere with your ability to listen or problem solve? Do you know when you need help, and can you ask for it?

Social awareness: the ability to sense, understand, and react to the emotions of others and to feel comfortable socially

Can you tell when you are unintentionally making another person uncomfortable or when someone who is smiling is really upset?

Relationship management: the ability to inspire, influence, and connect to others and to manage conflict.

Can you remain calm, energized and focused in the face of another’s distress or during an upsetting situation? Can you defuse conflict with humor or by listening convincingly to another’s point of view?


Remember that we all share the same emotions

Many organizations are crippled by people dedicating more time to protecting themselves from real and imagined threats, than to work. When fear rules, productive hours are lost in attempts to keep the upper hand, dodge the boss’ wrath, or compete for the position.

The undeniable fact that some people have more power than others in any organization does not have to overwhelm you with fear, as long as you remember that we all share the same emotions.

Does your manager act tough because they’re afraid being compassionate means being weak? Are your employees sullen because they feel just as demoralized as you would if no one showed appreciation for their work?. Does the person in the next office snap at you because they’re just as worried about rumored layoffs as you are?

When you remember that we are all peers on an emotional level. It becomes easier to approach the boss. To ask an employee to give a little more, or to understand that a coworker’s irritability is nothing personal. Emotions are great levelers among people; use them to tie you together rather than rend you apart.

We all need to feel valued and needed

How long do you think you’d last in a job where you didn’t feel valued by those around you? No matter the job, when we interact with people who make us feel valued and cared for. We feel good about ourselves and are inspired to work harder, longer, and more creatively. And when we make others feel valued and cared for. e get the kind of support we need to do our jobs well.

Whether you’re dealing with an employer, an employee, or a coworker, showing appreciation will go a long way 🙂 🙂

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