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Explore the concept of emotional intelligence, its impact on leadership or people management and its role in effective people management.......
Good people management skills are important for businesses in today’s competitive world. Most business leaders and managers understand their people matter, and effective people management skills could significantly impact a business's overall success. Effective people management is recognized among the essential skills business leaders need in today’s changing environment.
It’s worth noting that people management is not just about technical skills: emotional intelligence (commonly referred to as EQ or emotional quotient) is a critical component in people management. Statistics show that managers believe that emotional intelligence is crucial for success in leading teams through tough times of change (44%), addressing employees’ personal issues (37%), giving feedback (31%) and selecting talent (25%). Further, the World Economic Forum outlines that emotional intelligence is one of the 10 most in-demand skills that will remain there through at least 2025.
This article explores the concept of emotional intelligence, its impact on leadership or people management and its role in effective people management.
Emotional intelligence (EQ) is an individual’s ability to identify, understand and manage their own emotions and those of others. Emotional intelligence encompasses four key components:
Briefly, leaders or managers with high emotional intelligence can easily bring out the best in themselves and influence others to do the same. Also, it helps them manage their emotions and respond to situations easily. More importantly, emotional intelligence helps managers to manage relationships between them and employee and among employees easily.
As outlined above, emotional intelligence is of much significance for leaders in people management. Here are different ways emotional EQ helps in effective leadership and people management:
Effective communication is vital in people management, and leaders need this skill. With emotional intelligence, leaders can better and efficiently communicate with their team members, understand their needs and feelings, and respond effectively. Also, leaders with high emotional intelligence are able to stay calm and control their emotions when under pressure/stress, allowing them to communicate more effectively. More importantly, they can actively listen, empathize with others, and adjust their communication accordingly, leading to productive interaction.
Knowing how to build and maintain relationships is quite important in people management. Leaders or managers who have developed high emotional intelligence can easily build trust and rapport with colleagues and their team, ultimately helping them build better relationships in the workplace. Why is that so doable for them? Emotional intelligent leaders tend to have better communication skills, create an environment for open communication and understand other people’s motivation.
Better relationships result in highly engaged and productive employees. It also fosters collaboration and tolerance in the workplace.
Conflicts are inevitable when dealing with people in workplaces; therefore, leaders need to know how to navigate through such issues effectively. Emotional intelligence is one of the tools that can help them manage conflicts constructively (including diffusing arising disputes to prevent them from escalating) and find effective resolutions that are beneficial (win-win) for all parties involved.
Emotional intelligence plays a significant role in shifting organizational culture positively. To start with, emotionally intelligent leaders build better relationships and create strong teams, leading to increased employee satisfaction, better engagement and teamwork. Also, highly emotionally intelligent leaders easily promote a culture of mutual respect, compassion and support among their teams.
Proper decision-making is a major requirement for effective people management, and emotional intelligence is quite helpful in this process. Team leaders and managers with high emotional intelligence use their ability to understand their own emotions; thus, they can make more informed and rational decisions. Emotionally intelligent leaders are less likely to make decisions with anxiety; more often, it results in decisions based on facts and figures, resulting in better outcomes.
Also, they can easily analyze other team members’ emotions and body cues, which is essential for making effective decisions. More importantly, emotional intelligence helps leaders effectively implement decisions.
Emotional intelligence is a critical skill/component for effective people management, and leaders/managers need to cultivate it. It’s indispensable in people management in today’s ever-evolving and hyper-competitive business landscape.
Emotionally intelligent leaders can communicate effectively, build better relationships, positively influence organizational culture, make better decisions, and effectively manage conflict. Most of all, organizations that prioritize high emotional intelligence among their leaders, have high productivity, more engaged employees, cohesive teams and lower employee turnover rates.
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