Emotional intelligence is on everyone's minds right now.
Emotional intelligence has proven to be a stronger predictor of success than IQ in multiple studies. Emotionally intelligent leaders are also crucial to a high-functioning team, because they are better able to read emotions, manage conflict, and inspire others.
Harvey Deutschendorf, an emotional intelligence expert, author, and speaker, recommends several ways to show more emotional intelligence in a recent article for Fast Company.
1. Stay calm
Stress at work may be inevitable, but the most emotionally intelligent people find ways to manage it and keep a sense of perspective about challenging situations. Projecting a calm composure can also help your team face challenges with more optimism.
Most people think they're much better at listening than they actually are. Good listening doesn't necessarily mean agreeing with everyone's suggestions, but it does mean making your team feel acknowledged, Deutschendorf writes.
Think you're emotionally intelligent because you're nice? Think again.
Great leaders understand that the people on their team are humans—not robots. When your team members encounter difficult life events like a family illness or a bad breakup, show them that you understand what they're going through, Deutschendorf writes.
4. Own your mistakes
Emotionally intelligent people are quick to admit their mistakes and equally quick to suggest ways to fix them, Deutschendorf writes. He argues that this helps them learn faster and shows others that they're willing to take risks.
5. Take feedback gracefully
Another way to demonstrate emotional intelligence is by accepting constructive criticism with a positive attitude. If you struggle with feeling defensive in response to feedback, Deutschendorf recommends reminding yourself that the person delivering the feedback has good intentions.
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6. Resolve conflicts
Every office has its share of personality clashes, disagreements, and conflict. Emotionally intelligent people smooth ruffled feathers by convincing conflicting parties to find common ground and work toward a solution.
7. Earn trust
Trust and respect tend to come naturally when you show emotional intelligence in other ways, Deutschendorf writes. But, he argues, many people make the mistake of trying to force it to happen. If you're feeling like you deserve more trust and respect than you're currently given, Deutschendorf recommends looking for opportunities to help others or show that you're approachable.
(Deutschendorf, Fast Company, 5/24).
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