The term "emotional Intelligence" is being heard more and more often in the world of human recources. What is it, and why is it important to talk about it?
Daniel Goleman, an Amercian psychologist introduced the term Emotional Intelligence (EI) to the general public. He defined it as the ability to receive and apply knowledge from your emotions and the emotions of others. Contrary to popular belief, Emotional Intelligence is not about being nice: it is a way of being smart – having your emotions under control, making the right decisions and using your influence on others in order to achieve common goals.
It has been shown that without a certain level of EI skills we could have problems not only in our personal life but also at work. Good EI skills are essential for all professionals who work closely with other people, but especially important in some specific roles.
For example, being a decision maker can sometimes be very stressful. You are requiered to take quick and efficient decisions which can be beneficial but also can harm the business. Being a leader who motivates people, tries to develop their potential and is able to manage them in a productive way is not easy if you don’t have sufficient EI skills.
The same applies to technical professionals who need to adjust the projects they work on to the needs of different people with different opinions. They spend hours creating innovations but at the same time, face tight deadlines.
Of all roles, Customer Service Representatives are those who should have the highest level of EI. They continuously deal with angry and unsatisfied customers and are required to calmly listen their complaints and to find solutions to resolve their problems. For a person with a low level of EI, working in this kind of position would be very difficult.
Why develop employees’ Emotional Intelligence skills?
A person with high EI skills does not spend a lot of time worrying about how to do a task but rather acts and searches for a solution. He stays motivated, is focused on reaching goals, does not deteriorate under stress and has all the tasks under control. While working in a team, he gets on better with colleagues and cooperates more with all parties.
What happens when the Emotional Intelligence skills are low?
When the EI skills of employees are not developed enough, it might decrease the productivity of the whole organization. This is mainly caused by the lack of innovation and creativity as the people are not able to develop their potential enough. Low EI skills can also be a reason for a negative atmosphere at workplace, since the emotions are not managed properly.
To me, it seems that nowadays employers require good EI skills from their staff more often. This is probably because the importance of teamwork and working towards common goals is higher. If you think that your EI skills could be better, don’t worry: they can be learned. Therefore, I encourage everyone to start thinking: how could you improve your EI skills to be more efficient at work?