Leveraging Emotional Intelligence at Workplace

Leveraging Emotional Intelligence at Workplace
Individuals with high emotional intelligence can significantly contribute to building a collaborative and high-performing organization.

There is much more talked about, written, and researched about Emotional Intelligence. A high level of emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive, understand, and manage one’s emotions and feelings and understand others.

The critical elements of Emotional Intelligence are-

  1. Self-Awareness
  2. Self-Regulation
  3. Self-Motivation
  4. Social Awareness
  5. Social Skills
FactorsSelf Personal CompetenceOther Social Competence
RecognitionSelf-Awareness- Knowing one’s emotions. Ability to assess one’s feelings. Self ConfidenceSocial Awareness Empathy Service orientation Organizations awareness  
RegulationSelf-Management Self-control Trustworthiness Conscientiousness Adaptability Achievement drive InitiativeRelationship Management Developing others Influence Communication Conflict Management Leadership Change catalyst. Building bonds Teamwork and Collaboration

Source- Management and Labor Studies-Vol. 29. No.3, August 2004

Self-Awareness is all about identifying and knowing one’s emotions and feelings. Whereas social awareness is identifying other feelings and emotions. Self-management is about navigating through one’s emotions. While regulation does not mean keeping your feelings intact and being nice.  It means as one is aware of his/her feelings and emotions, it is also about embracing, navigating, and sharing your feelings and emotions in a more effective manner.

Social Awareness is being understanding and respectful toward others’ emotions and feelings. Individuals with high social awareness demonstrate empathy and have a strong orientation towards customer service (internal and external) as well as organization.

Individuals with high emotional intelligence can significantly contribute to building a collaborative and high-performing organization. They consistently display the below-mentioned behaviors and contribute to building a desirable culture within the organization.

Creating a psychologically safe workplace for others- People love to work with people who allow them to bring their authentic self to work. People with high emotional intelligence create a workplace that encourages people to be themselves and share their opinions and perspectives candidly.  They nurture an environment where people feel less vulnerable in their conduct and build a working culture of high ownership and accountability.

Regular and constructive feedback- People leveraging emotional intelligence believe in giving regular and constructive feedback. They share candid feedback on performance and behavioral inputs as well as outputs and have feedback conversations regularly to ensure fairness.

High Stake Conversation: While engaging in a confrontation, everyone’s natural tendency is to put their point forward aggressively and that might rub off people. On the other hand, a conflict-averse person will avoid confrontation altogether. Emotional Intelligence provides a balance of putting one’s point forward and listening to another person. 

Apart from high self-awareness and self-management in Emotional Intelligence, it is also social awareness that lets one control initial impulses or tendency to react. It also helps in controlling any anxiety that might increase while engaging in a conversation.

Empathy as a crucial element of social awareness will also allow oneself to see the situation from the other person’s point of view. While presenting one’s argument one also makes another person feel heard.  As per HBR, there are three different kinds of empathy- 

  1. Cognitive- I know how you think.
  2. Emotional- I know how you feel.
  3. Empathetic concern- I care about you

Many times, displaying cognitive and emotional elements of empathy makes it easy to manipulate people. However, thinking and feeling are different than care. While getting work done from others and driving teams towards achieving results, leaders don’t realize what it costs the other person. It creates emotional fatigue and burns people out. 

EI also helps in finding a fine balance between task and relationship orientation while driving and sustaining high performance. High emotional intelligence facilitates powerful and productive conversations.

Informal Connects and Networks- People with a high level of emotional intelligence have a tendency to build and strengthen relationships. People look at them as sounding boards and listening posts. They build trust in people. Others look at them as someone who will understand their feelings and emotions and are effective in creating informal connects and networks within the organization.

People with higher emotional intelligence add significant value in creating a nurturing and empowering workplace through understanding their feelings and emotions as well as their ability to strengthen relationships by understanding others’ feelings and emotions. Therefore, organizations also need to focus on embedding emotional intelligence as a key competency among its workforce to create a high-performing and cohesive work culture.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here