It may be difficult to believe, but being the smartest person in the room is not always enough to succeed in business.
Equally as important as the skills and expertise you have to offer is the way you have to offer them to the people you work with.
Emotional intelligence, otherwise known as the business of relating to people, is what ultimately separates successful people from complete and utter failures.
Consider these five points.
Emotional Intelligence Is Now the Strongest Predictor of Performance
Emotional intelligence has now been identified as the most important factor in terms of predicting job performance. The Journal of Organizational Behavior reported that high emotional intelligence predicts career success, and in fact, patterns have been observed showing that lower emotional intelligence employees tend to leave job positions within two years, oftentimes because of poor performance.
The same rings true for business owners and entrepreneurs. Those who have a high level of emotional intelligence tend to outperform their competitors, who may lack the soft skills needed to succeed in business.
Related Article: Emotional Intelligence & Negotiating: Lessons from Harvard Business School
Self-Management Allows Flexibility and Positivity
Emotional intelligence also means the ability to manage one’s self and use emotions and awareness to stay flexible towards meeting goals and staying positive. People with poor self-managing skills underperform and often have problems with motivation and adapting to new circumstances. Self-starters tend to outperform business owners who need a strict managerial style to thrive.
A spokesperson for Inc For Free, a free resource for business owners, said, “It’s important to consider the emotional intelligence of your team before launching a business. If your team members are lacking in this area, it’s important to work on improving these skills just as you would any other business skill.”
Higher Emotional Intelligence Is Linked With the Ability to Concentrate
With so many problems occurring with ADHD and distracting multimedia everywhere you turn, the ability to concentrate and pay attention to details is paramount to running a successful business. It is difficult to make connections in your mind and pay attention if you are constantly distracted and this is typically linked with lower emotional intelligence.
Collaborating With Customers and Making Personal Connections Is the Future
Skills are definitely useful but the ability to reach the customer is central to success in an Internet-dominated business world. Collaborating and connecting with customers are sure signs of emotionally intelligent business people. In turn, a business or startup that takes the time to do this will find greater success. Emotional intelligence means looking beyond just the product and into the social aspect of business what makes or breaks a brand name.
Emotional Intelligence Can Be Learned
Emotional intelligence is a skill and failure to cultivate an in-demand skill is a big mistake in the business world. Whereas many people are unable to be creative or be mechanical because of the way their mind works, emotional intelligence is something that can be learned. It is not related to intellect or IQ. It is simply a set of communication and listening skills that can be acquired and improved over time, and with practice. It is not even related to personality, necessarily, as both introverted and extroverted thinkers can learn this type of business training.
Says a spokesperson from CRM Learning, a company that specializes in teaching workers and students important social business skills, “It’s just a matter of learning how to interact with other people. Business is based on the concept of interacting with other businesses, governments and customers. You can’t take emotional intelligence out of success…this is just a wake-up call to invest more time in taking it seriously.”
Related Article: A Deeper Commitment: 5 Ways to Create Emotionally Intelligent Teams
Ways to Boost Emotional Intelligence
Business success isn’t always determined by what you say or what you do, but rather in how you do it. Odds are you probably know someone (or you might be someone) who is considered an expert or genius in their field, but can’t seem to reach any real level of success.
If this happens to you, it’s probably time to invest in becoming more emotionally intelligent and developing your social skills. Not only will it help you relate to your team better, but equally as important, it will help you understand the true needs of your customers so you can relate to them in a way that’s more important than just money.
Here are a few tricks for boosting your emotional intelligence;
- Practice self-awareness and observation. The first step to becoming more emotionally intelligent is to understand how you feel, why you feel it and recognizing how you might respond in a more productive manner. Once you recognize your behaviors, you can choose to change them if necessary.
- Are you reacting or responding? Pay attention to whether or not you react to situations or respond to situations. When you react to the world around you, many times you end up making decisions that aren’t the best choice. When you take the time to slow down and consciously decide how to respond, the result is usually better for everyone involved.
- Don’t allow yourself to be stuck in adversity. Sometimes at work, and in your personal life, the going gets tough. Do you bounce back from adversity or let it keep you down? Next time you’re faced with a difficult situation in business or at home, ask yourself what lessons you can learn and figure out the best path for changing your situation instead of letting it keep you down.
- Find a mentor. It may seem counter-intuitive to improving your emotional intelligence, but sometimes the best thing you can do is surround yourself with emotionally intelligent people who consistently make good decisions and conscious choices. You become the five people you spend the most time with, so choose wisely.