5 Ways HR Teams Can Build Emotionally Intelligent Workplaces

June 15, 2021

As an HR and People leader, you have a responsibility to create workplaces that are positive, supportive, and inclusive — but how do you do it?

The first step is becoming familiar with the concept of emotional intelligence, one of the fastest-growing and most popular concepts in today’s modern workplace.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Someone’s emotional quotient — or EQ — refers to their ability to recognize, understand, manage, and reason with emotions.

Emotional intelligence has exploded in popularity recently, as more workplaces are waking up to how developing one’s EQ can impact how managers and team members communicate and empathize with one another.

EQ is so important that a survey of over 500 HR managers found that skills like resilience, trustworthiness, and confidence ranked as “more important” than experience and education.

These findings reinforce that empathy and emotional intelligence can be up to three times more valuable than traditional workplace skills!

Ready to start building an emotionally intelligent workplace? Here are five tips to get you started:

1. Figure out the value of EQ for your workplace

Before you invest in emotional intelligence training, ask yourself: what will the value of emotional intelligence be to my workforce? 

A great way to determine this is to review employee wellbeing surveys and exit interview feedback. Other signals that your workplace could benefit from emotional intelligence training are high turnover and low productivity. 

If you’re not sure how to assess the value of EQ for your workplace, contact an expert coach and ask for their insight.

2. Lead from the top

As an HR or People leader, your attitude sets the tone for much of the organization. If you and other leaders are exhibiting moodiness, cynicism, sarcasm, or other negative behaviours, it’s time for an attitude adjustment. 

After all, you can’t expect your employees to be upbeat and collaborative if you aren’t willing to do the same.

3. Integrate training

Emotional intelligence development is an ongoing process, which means considering how you will ensure that your employees can find continued benefit from it.

Instead of investing in a one-time training program, consider how you can work with a professional coach to develop a program unique to your workplace that takes ongoing learning into consideration.

4. Make EQ part of your company’s values

Emotional intelligence can only thrive in environments where honest communication is the norm, so make sure to encourage employees to open up, express concerns, and practice healthy communication with one another.

In addition to implementing training programs to teach manager show to identify emotional challenges and approach employees in supportive ways, you may want to consider setting up a Microsoft Teams or Slack chat where employees can speak openly, and without fear of judgment.

5. Bake EQ into your hiring process

By understanding the role that EQ plays in the recruitment process, you can ensure that you’re hiring candidates who will contribute to your workplace in positive and emotionally intelligent ways.

Not only do you have to spend less time doing EQ training with these employees later on, but hiring candidates who are adaptive, positive, and collaboration-focused increases productivity and the overall well-being of your workplace.

Start building an emotionally intelligent workplace today

The first step to an emotionally intelligent workplace starts by developing your own EQ. To get started, simply sign up for our next EQ-i2.0 / EQ360 Certification coming up on June 22 – 25! 

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