Emotional intelligence is a quality underestimated by employers, and that is of utmost importance to employees. In short, it is the ability to recognize and control our emotions, and to recognize and understand those of others.
Here we tell you why this quality is so important and how you can know if you have it.
Why is emotional intelligence important for entrepreneurs?
People with a high degree of emotional intelligence are good at reading people, driving and understanding their own feelings, and interacting with others. These are four of the most important areas where emotional intelligence can help you:
. Stability. If you want to lead a team of employees or manage a community of followers, you must remain emotionally stable, even in times of crisis. Emotional intelligence helps you control anger, panic and despair, but above all, keep calm, no matter what happens.
. Sales and service. Understanding what people feel, why they feel it and what they want or need, is essential if you want to sell products and services that people really want to obtain. It can also help you close projects once you gain momentum.
. Motivation. Being able to relate to employees and understand their feelings increases self-esteem and motivates workers to be more successful in their environment.
. Mediation and negotiation Emotional intelligence also helps you resolve conflicts between employees and partners, that gives you an advantage when you try to negotiate.
Signs of emotional intelligence
How can you tell if you have emotional intelligence? Look for the following signs in you:
1. You are able to talk about your emotional experiences
When we are little they teach us the basic concepts of emotional vocabulary with words like: happy, sad, silly and even crazy. But how expressive are you when describing your most complex emotional experiences? An expressive and precise vocabulary is a sign that you are introspective enough to understand your emotions and how they work in general.
For example, you might describe something like “nostalgic” instead of “a little sad,” or feel “irritability related to stress” instead of “anger.”
2. You can easily identify strengths and weaknesses (including yours)
Bosses with emotional intelligence are able to quickly discover the strengths and weaknesses of their employees, and are not afraid to admit theirs. Everyone is good at doing different things and everyone has personal deficiencies.
Seeing things from the outside is a sign that you pay attention to the way people interact, and that you have the ability to see the bad and the good in them.
3. You have been a good judge of behavior
Think of people you have related to in the past, whether they are former members of a team or your closest friends. When you had a “good feeling” about someone, how was your relationship with that person?
First impressions can be deceptive, but if during your life you have been able to choose reliable and positive people to have them close by, you probably have a great capacity to perceive the character of people.
4. People ask for advice or support
How often do people who face a difficult problem come to you for advice? Or how many ask for your support when they are going through a difficult time? If many people do, it means that they trust you will not judge them and that you are likely to give them a valuable point of view.
In other words, it is a sign that you are a person with emotional intelligence and that other people can see it.
5. You can let things happen
All leaders experience moments of frustration, irritation and anger, but how fast can these situations let go? Are you the kind of person who holds a grudge, or are you one of those who forgives and forgets? Do your mistakes chase you or do you try to work on them as soon as possible?
People with emotional intelligence are able to control their reactions and let things flow with some ease.
6. Usually, you know how others feel
Do you perceive when your employee is stressed, or if he is not acting normal? Do you realize when your friends act strangely, even if it’s just a little different from their usual behavior?
People with emotional intelligence notice these differences consistently.
7. You accept other beliefs, ways of working and perspectives
There is no way to act, to think or work, if not dozens. Are you a person open to possibilities or do you try to change everyone your way?
Do not worry if you do not show those things. Some people have more emotional intelligence than others, but this is a skill and awareness that can develop over time. Start by paying more attention to the thoughts, feelings and behaviors of the people around you, and encourage you to talk to strangers.
The more you focus on the desires, needs and perspectives of other people, the more you will learn about the human condition, and become a better leader.