Gone are the days where intimidation and hierarchy are successful methods for influencing change in the workplace. While EI is often downplayed as a soft skill, it is evident that employees are becoming more receptive to change managed with emotional intelligence.
As defined by The Economic Times, emotional intelligence refers to the capability of a person to manage and control his or her emotions and possess the ability to control the emotions of others.
So how can you use emotional intelligence to impact change in a business?
Psychologist and change management coach Mark Connelly highlighted four key aspects of emotional intelligence:
1. Self-awareness: the ability to understand your feelings and how you react emotionally to the actions of others.
2. Self-management: the ability to choose how you react in highly-emotional situations.
3. Social awareness: the ability to recognize the emotions and body language of others.
4. Relationship management: the ability to communicate with others based on their mental state and emotional needs.
By understanding these 4 keys aspects you are able to authentically and effectively navigate change whilst maintaining employee engagement.
In Daniel Goleman's research as presented in the Harvard Business Review; at nearly 200 large, global companies, Goleman found that while the qualities traditionally associated with leadership—such as intelligence, toughness, determination, and vision—are required for success, they are insufficient. Truly effective leaders are also distinguished by a high degree of emotional intelligence, which includes self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skill.