Tips on How to Build a Strong Emotional Intelligence for Leadership

Happiness and success are the two primary goals for all of us. While intelligence quotient (IQ) is a significant factor that defines how well you’d be able to achieve these goals, the importance of emotional quotient (EQ) can’t be ignored either. There is no argument over the fact that emotional intelligence is crucial for being successful in various domains of life including relationships, academia, and professional career. Emotional intelligence enables you to make an informed decision, cope with the daily stress and anxiety, be productive and creative, and stay in touch with your feelings. This is what signifies the need for understanding emotional intelligence deeply.

Emotional Intelligence And Leadership

On the surface, leadership skills are easily recognizable regardless of the context. Be it in academia, professional career, social service, or politics, someone who has a vision and is productive and creative enough to realize his vision is considered as a good leader. The ability to take initiative, plan and strategically accomplish the goals are among the other prominent leadership skills. But this is not all that makes up a good leader. A few of the other skills may not be as evident as these but are every bit as crucial in determining the success of a leader as the aforementioned qualities. For instance, the ability to be a part of the team, to put the team on the path to success, to bring the entire team under the same umbrella, and to work with them for the greater good; these are undoubtedly the defining qualities of a successful leader as well.

If you are anything like the majority of us today, you must have always focused on honing the former mentioned skills and qualities which are largely dependent on your IQ. But the latter ones have their development embedded in the roots of emotional intelligence which accentuates its importance if you are looking forward to developing the leadership skills and optimize your personal and professional growth.

What Is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional Intelligence is defined as the ability of a person to perceive not only his own but the emotions of others as well. The appropriate management of such emotions and understanding the underlying queues about what the emotions signify is termed as emotional intelligence. In terms of a leader, wouldn’t you call one a good manager if you were comfortable with taking your queries and concerns to him, someone who would support your personal and professional growth and be receptive of your needs and willing to work with you to ensure that they are satisfactorily met, someone who had the maturity to be respectful towards your opinions and ideas even in an event of a conflict? These are all the qualities of a leader which summon his emotional intelligence and not the IQ.

The importance of emotional intelligence for a leader has been fairly highlighted above. If you are worried about your current emotional quotient and the hindrance that it may cause in making you a successful leader, the good news for you is that you can always work to improve your emotional intelligence. In order to make it easier for you, we have compiled a list of fundamental strategies that you can employ to improve your emotional intelligence for leadership.

  1. Your Negative Emotions Are The First Barricade

Being a human, it is a natural tendency for all of us to have certain negative emotions from time to time. While they are mostly associated with an event, it is not unheard of to be in a bad mood for no apparent reason. The first step to improving your emotional intelligence, therefore, is to overcome your negative emotions. Instead of being overwhelmed on every other thing and take it all out on your employees, you are required to make yourself capable of keeping a check and managing your negative emotions. We are not going to lie to you, it is not going to be as easy as it sounds. But with practice and by taking one thing at a time, it can certainly be improved over time.

Under such circumstances, it may work for you to sit back, relax, and try to maintain an objective view of the things. If you are being triggered by someone or something, try to stop yourself from jumping to conclusions. If it’s a person, make an effort into understanding where they are coming from. Meditation and mindfulness practices even the basic ones such as the deep breathing exercise can help a great deal in clearing your vision and making you more calm and peaceful. Sparing 5 minutes after every couple of hours to practice meditation in an attempt to clear up your head may produce life-changing results for you if you are looking forward to keeping your negative emotions under control at work.

  1. You Need To Focus On Improvement Rather Than Deficiencies

It should go without saying that a good leader with strong emotional intelligence is a fine communicator. People with higher emotional intelligence are known to communicate in a fashion that gently taps on the deficiencies and use specific words which bring the entire attention to the solution that is likely to address them.