4 Ways Emotional Intelligence Makes You More Successful

February 14, 2023

When we think about what makes someone “successful” we often think about qualities like determination and drive – we tend to forget about the human aspect of success: emotional intelligence.

However, if you want to thrive in any kind of leadership role then developing your “soft skills” is one of the most important endeavors you can undertake.

What is Emotional Intelligence (EI)?

Emotional intelligence is described by psychologists as the ability to recognize, control, and evaluate different emotions in yourself and others.

And, you don’t have to be born with higher levels of emotional intelligence to succeed!  Emotional intelligence can be honed and developed through training and mindful practice.

When it comes to assessing your EI, a few factors come into play including:

  • Perceiving the emotion. The first step to understanding emotions is to be able to identify and recognize them in yourself and others. This involves understanding verbal and nonverbal cues, and staying objective when assessing how others are behaving.

  • Applying reason. Emotions are nuanced and being able to recognize the factors shaping the emotion is essential.

  • Understanding the emotion. Recognizing the emotion is just half the battle; the next step is understanding how the emotion affects decisions, and how it can lead to better business outcomes.

  • Managing the emotion. Regulating and managing your response to an emotion when you feel it is the final (and one of the most important) steps in this process. 

As a leader, having well-developed emotional intelligence helps you manage people more effectively since you can respond to their feelings with empathy, compassion, and objectiveness. 

4 Ways Emotional Intelligence Makes You a Better Leader

1. You’re More Self-Aware

Self-awareness is an essential leadership skill. It shapes the policies you create, since you understand how they’ll affect your team, and it helps you identify where your weaknesses are as a leader so you can find support and fill those gaps.

Self-aware leaders know that they’re not perfect, and they don’t pretend to be. This helps employees and the people they work with trust, respect, and value them as managers and partners who are authentic.

2. You Can Build (and Maintain) Relationships 

People who can identify and respond to other people’s feelings and perspectives can develop and maintain relationships more easily. 

They’re also better at navigating different personality types, understanding how others react to change, and adapting their reactions to be respectful of other people’s perspectives.

Interpersonal skills are essential in leadership and in the business landscape, and emotionally intelligent people can build genuine trust and rapport with the people they work with and lead.

3. You Communicate More Effectively

Most communication isn’t what you say, it’s how you say it. Developing our emotional intelligence helps us build our communication skills because we can be more sensitive to how others might be interpreting what we say.

Being a successful leader means communicating goals, motivations, and plans for how the company will grow so you get “buy in” from all levels.

Additionally, there are lots of different personality types in the workplace and a leader needs to be able to adapt their communication style to those varying personality types.

4. You Can Manage Your Own Emotions 

Self-regulation is an essential leadership skill because successful leaders don’t make decisions based on their emotions.

When a challenge or setback pops up, they stay focused, rational, and calm. They think before they speak and can manage themselves during times of change and stress. When leaders display high levels of stress, workplaces experience a “trickle down” effect that can demotivate employees and lead to higher levels of resignation during critical periods.

People want to work with and for compassionate, kind, and considerate leaders, and investing in developing your emotional intelligence is how you become the most successful kind of leader.

Start Developing Your Emotional Intelligence Today

There’s no bad time to start building the skills you need for success! Start by registering for one of our emotional intelligence training programs today!  

This skill can’t be understated for leaders looking to become the most successful versions of themselves. Sign up now!