Human relationships are the very fabric of any business. Building empathy, better negotiating and connection with others are all crucial elements in being the best leader or version of yourself. Then throw in the ‘new norm’, 9am Zoom calls from home wearing last night's pants with Peppa Pig blasting in the background to keep the little one distracted, understanding and raising our Emotional Intelligence (referred as EQ) has become more important than ever before. Investing in your own EQ, doesn’t cost anything other than time and patience.
So, what actually is EQ? The ability to identify and regulate your own emotions so you can express yourself in a constructive manner and build more meaningful interpersonal relationships with others.
So how do you know if you have a high EQ and how do you work on improving it? We’ve created some simple pointers to help you follow and understand.
Signs of high EQ:
You are in-tune with what makes you tick! You are able to identify your emotions and emotional triggers. For example, what makes you angry, happy, sad, bored. You can recognize your feelings and acknowledge them in a controlled manner. You then are able to manage them appropriately and don’t react overtly when something occurs.
You are authentic, people know where they stand with you and you’re able to speak up in a non-confrontational way.
2. Respond well to criticism.
High EQ individuals respond well to criticism and can reflect on your own emotions and the emotions of others. They understand that constructive criticism is an avenue for further learning and future growth and not something to be taken personally.
An individual with a high EQ will listen and take on board feedback, realising others may have a different opinion to their own and use it as an opportunity for development.
3. Analyse others behaviour.
Are you a good judge of character? Chances are you have high EQ. Those who are able to analyse others behaviour and show empathy to the feelings of those around them score a high EQ. Empathy doesn't mean always agreeing with the behaviour of others or being drawn into their issues, but it does provide one with the perspective to see things from another point of view distinct to their own.
4. Be able to say sorry and apologise.
Being able to admit when we have made a mistake, apologise and move on from it, rather than blame others or make excuses is a tell-tale sign of a person with high EQ. Let's face it we all make mistakes at work and in our own lives. Being able to be vulnerable and able to say you are sorry shows great maturity and builds respect amongst others.
5. Remain open minded and flexible.
When faced with challenges or challenging behaviors those with a high EQ will be able to remain open minded. Understanding that not everyone will take the same approach or feel the same way about an event or situation.
Being able to listen and remain flexible in finding solutions is ever so important in today's environment. This is probably the single best way an emotionally intelligent individual will get ahead. They have the ability to pivot, help others and stay focused on achieving the goal through a diversity of means.
So if your EQ needs a little work and lets face it we all do! Perhaps attempt trying out some of the high EQ behaviours above. Even if they don’t come naturally at first, with a little patience and practice we can all improve our EQ to help build more meaningful connections with those around us to become better leaders.
Want to know more about identifying high EQ individuals when hiring? Get in touch with one of the TMS Talent team.