When considering ways to become a more respected leader, does emotional intelligence in the workplace come to mind?
Or does thinking about emotions seem to be something that only applies to your private life?
For some, emotions may not seem like something that we really care about at work.
Instead, we should be focused on profits, productivity, and the bottom line.
But emotional intelligence in the workplace can make you a better team member, communicator, and even a better leader.
You want your team to trust you. Emotional intelligence can help.
As a project manager or team lead, it’s important that your team trusts you.
They need to know that you’ll provide support, escalate risk, remove roadblocks, and support them in other ways when needed.
If your team doesn’t trust you, your credibility as a leader suffers.
And that can impact team performance overall.
Using emotional intelligence helps guide your daily communications and interactions.
It can boost your communication and leadership skills.
And you’ll likely have many chances to practice and demonstrate your leadership competency and build trust within your organization.
[bctt tweet=”Using emotional intelligence helps guide your daily communications and interactions and can boost your communication and leadership skills.” username=”leighespy”]
5 Ways Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace Improves Communication and Leadership Abilities
Here are five ways emotional intelligence in the workplace improves your communication and demonstrates your strong leadership abilities:
1. You’re aware of your emotions.
When you’re more aware of how you feel in a situation, you can use this input to guide your behavior. You’ll be better able to think about your actions, rather than simply reacting.
If a co-worker does something that upsets you, rather than having a knee-herk reaction, you can stop and consider the situation. Your anger can be a clue that there’s something that needs to be addressed more thoughtfully. You can take time to think how you’ll respond.
And then you can respond professionally and maintain relationships.
And in the process, you’ll earn the respect and trust of your peers.
2. You’re aware of other people’s feelings.
Thinking of how your team might feel in different situations can help guide you to support them when needed.
If your team is consistently working long hours to meet a tough deadline, you can take various approaches to provide support, depending on the situation.
You may need to stay late with them and bring in dinner if this is a one-time situation.
Or you may need to escalate to management if the pressure is coming from above to take on too much work.
Being able to empathize with your team over difficult situations can help you search for the right solution to solve problems you might overlook if you weren’t tuned into their emotions during difficult times.
3. You can set boundaries.
Emotional intelligence can give clues to when others may be treating you in ways that are disrespectful or inappropriate.
You can then stand up for yourself and respectfully let others know that the behavior is unacceptable, and you won’t tolerate it.
If a co-worker raises her voice or berates you in front of others, your feelings will tell you in immediately that this behavior is upsetting. And you can of course let your co-worker know that this is inappropriate. Standing up for yourself indicates self-respect.
And it will most likely earn you the respect of your peers, too.
I once worked with a manager who pat me on top of the head during a meeting with consultants. He pat me on the head as one would do to a child. He was much taller than me – I’m only 5 feet tall. I was immediately embarrassed and frankly furious. I wanted to maintain a good relationship with this manager, who I respected and liked.
I went to his office after the event and shared that the event was demeaning and unacceptable. He was surprised to hear he’d offended me, and sincerely apologized.
And after that he always treated me respectfully. And we had a great working relationship.
4. You’re open to ideas and feedback.
You can listen openly and objectively to feedback from others because you’re less likely to take it personally.
You won’t get upset when others don’t agree with you, and instead, offer constructive ideas or different points of view.
This feedback and input will allow you to learn, grow, and improve.
You can better collaborate and have better outcomes.
And people will trust that they can share different opinions without you getting defensive or argumentative.
These are important traits for a leader.
[bctt tweet=”Using emotional intelligence helps you accept feedback and be more open to different opinions without being defensive or argumentative. You can instead use the information to learn and grow.” username=”leighespy”]
5. You build trust with your peers.
By using emotional intelligence to tune into others’ feelings and interact respectfully, people will trust you more.
If you’re flippant or a bully, team members won’t trust you as someone they could come to with challenges.
But as someone who can tune into emotions, treat others with respect, and show that you expect to be treated respectfully, others will trust you.
They’ll know they can come to you with challenges, share difficult news, and engage in constructive dialogue without fear.
They’ll see you as a trusted leader.
These are the various ways that emotional intelligence can improve your communication and leadership.
To read more about how to develop your emotional intelligence, read How to Develop Emotionally Intelligent Leadership Skills.
Now it’s your turn to share:
Have you had challenging situations that allowed you to build your emotional intelligence?
Or if you have stories of the opposite, share those so that others can learn what not to do!