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How Do We Close the Emotional Intelligence Theory-Practice Gap?

When it comes to leadership, productivity and teamwork, one of the most vital metrics for gauging a person’s performance is their emotional intelligence. While it’s more mainstream counterpart; Intelligence Quotient (IQ) is much more publicized, Emotional intelligence (EQ) is just as important in the workplace. Emotional intelligence is simply a measure of a person’s ability to understand, use, interact with and manage their emotions. While it is true that this has been greatly neglected in most companies, more organizations are beginning to realize just how important EQ is to interpersonal and intrapersonal communications and slowly beginning to inject and encourage its development as a part of their company culture.

Interestingly, EQ is generally not fixed and can be greatly improved by engaging in activities that helps to build collaboration and communication skills. An important query that accompanies the subject of EQ is why it is so important and highly rated. The reason for this is simple. Being able to manage your emotions, work with others and navigate day-to-day interactions effectively can greatly determine a person’s success at work. In fact, it is no secret that the smartest people in the world are not always the most successful. It is important to create a positive balance between IQ and EQ in such a way that individuals get the best results in their workplace.

Did you know that most companies gauge a person’s anticipated performance and efficiency using behavioral-based interviews? In fact, it is well documented that 95% of HR managers think it is necessary for leaders and all employees to have high emotional intelligence. Companies that have invested in their staff and created an atmosphere where their workers can boost their EQ have recorded a consistent growth in productivity, along with a better company culture.

Simply put, EQ helps people connect with their inner self. It helps individuals make informed decisions based on what they really feel, while having healthy perspectives that enables them to turn thoughts into actions. There are four attributes that define emotional intelligence.

  • Self-Awareness

Being introspective is an indicator of EQ. Self-awareness depicts a personal ability to recognize emotions as they come, differentiate them from one another and detect how they influence their actions. A person with a high level of self-awareness will be very familiar with their own strengths and weaknesses. A person’s level of self-confidence grows as they become more self-aware and they begin to gain a better understanding of the things that are within their control, while accepting those that are not.

  • Self Management

This defines a person ability to take charge of their impulses, control their habits and follow through on set commitments. Self-management is often considered to be the “execution” arm as it directly shows the level of a person’s emotional intelligence.

  • Social Awareness

Empathy is a huge part of EQ, being able to understand the emotions of others, pick up on social cues and even correctly interpret the social dynamic and power structure of groups is a direct indicator of heightened emotional intelligence. In order to succeed in the workplace, it is extremely important to develop maximum social awareness, as this not only makes a person likeable, it also makes them a more effective communicator.

  • Relationship Management

Another attribute of EQ is the ability to handle, grow, and develop meaningful relationships. This helps individuals build their communication, conflict management and team work skills as they start to learn how teams function, while creating mutually beneficial networks.

Introducing 8 Agile Emotional Intelligence Mindsets

There are eight Agile EQ mindsets that help individuals guide their interactions. These core mindsets help to form a well-rounded EQ label; therefore, enabling employees to adapt and fit into various situations. These mindsets include:

Dynamic: Acting on new ideas and creating powerful movements that drives others to action.

Outgoing: Creating new relationships and building fresh networks that can help with growth.

Empathizing: Building a better connection by interaction, learning and understanding the emotional needs of people around you.

Receptive: Welcoming new ideas and prioritizing flexibility over rigidity.

Composed: Making informed decisions even during stress and pressure.

Self-Assured: Expressing yourself with confidence and leading through trust in your own abilities.

Resolute: Wading through obstacles and remaining firm in the face of challenges.

Objective: Making conclusions based on facts and filtering feelings from actual figures.

How to Improve Your Emotional Intelligence

There’s a growing recognition of the value of emotional intelligence in the workplace. In Wiley’s survey, 95% of respondents said EQ is at least as important at work as IQ—if not more so. 86% of managers, directors, and executives said EQ is a bigger factor in organizational success than it was five years ago.

Having discovered the key attributes that defines EQ, it is also important to learn exactly how you can apply each of these factors to your professional and personal life, and use them to build up your EQ. A logical response would be to seek activities that can help develop your self-awareness, self-management, relationship management and social awareness. The 8 Agile EQ Mindsets are more detailed and practical steps that you can begin to understand to boost your EQ and agility.

People recognize the importance of EQ, but there’s a gap between theory and practice in many organizations. 98% of supervisors, managers, directors, and executives said it would be worthwhile for their teams to develop their EQ; however, only 72% said they know how to develop these critical skills.

How do we close the EQ theory-practice gap? There’s a vibrant industry around the training of emotional intelligence. Most of the training solutions revolve around an EQ appraisal, which offers an individual a measure of their emotional intelligence at a moment in time. It is one thing to have insight into your emotional intelligence; it is another to use that information to grow and enhance your impact. And it is still another to scale it across the enterprise to drive organizational performance. How can organizations develop the emotional intelligence necessary to support what they need most today—a thriving agile culture?

A Practical EQ Solution for the Everyday Workplace

The Everything DiSC® Agile EQ™, is a practical and effective program built to help nurture EQ, while equipping employees at all levels with an effective way to enhance agility. By gauging two aspects of personality; Skepticism and Pace, this program helps employees fast-track their development, while evaluating comfort level with the 8 Agile EQ Mindsets.

Everything DiSC® Agile EQ™ helps organizations and people adapt to the future—whatever it brings—so that when it arrives, they are ready. At Anderson Consulting & Training, we are ready to help you and your organization thrive in a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environment. Ready to maximize your strengths and explore all of your untapped potential?

Get in touch with us today to sign up for our Everything DiSC® Agile EQ™ training.