For how managers can increase their EQ, click here.
Emotional Intelligence is about how well you understand yourself and others, and your ability to influence yourself and others. Emotional intelligence (EQ) is highly prized in the workplace, with high EQ being correlated with those in leadership roles and higher salaries. (It also improves your health, relationships, overall happiness -- and your sense of humor.) Not surprisingly, HR is the top industry with the most number of high EQ professionals.
A certain level of emotional control and understanding is also imperative to being in a professional environment, no matter what role you’re in. In one advice column, a letter writer asks Alison Green of Ask a Manager about emotional control in the workplace. She answers, “In general, part of being professional at work is maintaining a relatively even emotional keel.”
She also adds a bunch of practical advice in her response, and the comments of the post include several other examples and aids. That’s one great thing about EQ -- you can definitely increase it. According to Harvard Business Review, coaching programs, accurate feedback, and a willingness to change are all key to increasing EQ.
The first step might simply be understanding how much EQ you have at the moment. Inc.com has a pretty good set of questions for this self-evaluation. However, we thought it would be better to see how EQ can make the office a better place to work for you and your coworkers. So here we not only break down the elements of emotional intelligence, but talk about incidents where you would rely on it the most.
There are four major elements to EQ:
Self-awareness: Understanding how you feel at work and why, and taking it seriously.
Challenge: You miss a deadline.
Self-control: Understanding your own limits, respecting other people’s boundaries, and communicating with your coworkers and boss about concerns or ideas about your work environment.
Challenge: You’re eager to impress your new boss, but are slightly intimidated by the big, challenging project she gives you.
Awareness of others: Understanding why your coworkers and manager act a certain way.
Challenge: Your coworker interrupts a conversation you’re having with another coworker to ask you to keep your voice down while he takes a client call.
Control of others: Managing someone else’s emotional reactions or actions through communication.
Challenge: You’re frustrated with the fact that your coworker mostly uses Slack or email to communicate with you, despite the fact that you sit across from each other.