Importance of Emotional Intelligence in the workplace
The truth is that emotional self-control is possibly the most valuable skill that you could ever acquire and prioritize in a workplace.
When a workplace has a low Emotional Intelligence (EQ) culture, employees work less effectively together, and they tend to be more aggressive, passive, and irresponsible.
On the other hand, companies that prioritize EQ foster a safer and more positive environment. Their performance and productivity are higher as well.
In fact, emotional intelligence has been linked strongly to what differentiates people who are successful versus people who are not.
Let’s clarify and define emotional intelligence before we get into its importance and the statistics behind it.
What is Emotional Intelligence?
Emotional intelligence (also known as emotional quotient or EQ) is the ability to perceive, use, understand, manage, and handle your own emotions in positive ways to control the situation around you, relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others, and defuse conflict.
Emotional intelligence is commonly defined by four attributes according to Daniel Goleman (the author of the best-selling book Emotional Intelligence):
- Self-awareness– the ability to know one’s emotions, strengths, weaknesses, drives, values, and goals and recognize their impact on others while using gut feelings to guide decisions.
- Self-regulation– involves controlling or redirecting one’s disruptive emotions and impulses and adapting to changing circumstances.
- Social skill– managing relationships to get along with others
- Empathy– considering other people’s feelings, especially when making decisions
- Motivation– being aware of what motivates them.
To sum it up we can say EI has two major components:
- Intrapersonal skills (personal competence)
- Interpersonal skills (social competence)
Importance of Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace
Below are some studies and statistics that prove the real-life benefits of developing emotional intelligence in an organization.
Greater performance and productivity
TalentSmart studied 34 important workplace skills, including emotional intelligence, and
found that EQ was the highest predictor of work performance.
The study also concluded that 90% of top job performers had a high EQ, compared to only 20% of low performers.
It is not surprising! People with high EQs make an average $29,000 per year more than people with low EQs.
Some studies have also found that Fortune 500 companies that implement EQ training also had increased work retention by 67%, saving them millions in recruiting and training costs.
Improve personal skills:
- EQ can improve thinking and creative skills because it gives you the flexibility to look at problems outside the box and with an open-minded perspective.
- Studies have also proven that people with higher EQ are more resilient, flexible, and tolerant of challenges.
Importance of EI in Managerial or Leadership Positions
As a manager or leader, having high EQ helps you empathize, communicate, inspire, influence, and meet staff needs to create a better and more productive work environment. EQ helps you to communicate more effectively, deal constructively with work conflicts, and understand triggers that affect others in a positive and negative way.
The good news is that emotional intelligence can be DEVELOPED! That is why it is so valuable to learn how to identify, understand, and manage emotions and to teach these to your staff.
Think about an astronaut for a moment. They train themselves to be completely in control of their emotional state. And of course, they do that because it’s a life-or-death situation and they have to have that control.
Astronauts are human beings just like us. If they can control their emotions, so can we.