Leadership and Emotional Intelligence

A Requirement to Great Leadership

A common saying is that “there is no emotion in business”. However, emotional intelligence separates average professionals from those with great leadership skills. Business Insider, along with exceptional business professionals, reports that leaders with high emotional intelligence communicate better, create understanding in the workplace, and help achieve common goals. Empathizing with employees and coworkers while maintaining a calm demeanor can help address conflicts before they intensify.

Effectively engaging with coworkers can build your leadership.
Developing leadership skills starts with your emotional intelligence.

Empathy: A Key Ingredient

The former GE executive and CEO of BTM, Faisal Hoque, offers four questions to use as starting points to develop your leadership.

  1. ‘How does this situation affect you?’ Encourage coworkers to share their concerns. Listen attentively to their feedback. Considering their point of view can prevent future conflicts.
  2. ‘How does this keep you from succeeding?’  If a coworker complains or appears stuck on a task, ask what roadblocks stand in their way. When people feel valued for their contributions, they’ll also feel more comfortable explaining—without blame or anger—what’s preventing from them contributing.
  3. ‘What do you think would be the ideal outcome?’ Reconnect individual team member’s main goals when they appear to differ from their teammates.
  4. ‘What did you learn from the last obstacle you cleared?’ Reconnect someone’s problem-solving skills from a previous issue to correlate the process to the current one.

Hoque’s advice rings true. Great leaders listen. Therefore, the next time you find yourself frustrated by a colleague or in a situation where a lack of communication could be the problem, don’t let your negative emotions overwhelm you. Simply ask a question.

Sometimes, developing your own leadership skills can be the easiest solution.

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