What determines your possible future career success? Is it intelligence, technical knowledge and skills or educational success? Over the past number of years, these questions have been researched expansively by recruiters, human behaviour researchers and talent management experts. The answers now point towards emotional competencies. Emotional intelligence or EQ, combines your ability to manage your emotions, understand the emotions of others and the ability to relate to others in effective ways in a wide range of contexts. When it comes to happiness and success in life, emotional intelligence (EQ) matters just as much as intellectual ability (IQ). Emotional intelligence can help you build stronger relationships, succeed at work, and achieve personal goals.
As outlined below, leaders whose prime strengths lie in the emotional competencies realm are slowly replacing the traditional stereotype of an organisational leader as a confident, even aggressive, extroverted male whose strengths are strategic decision-making and performance management, not emotional sensitivity. Therefore it seems that emotional competencies, and the capacity to manage and build positive relationships, are replacing traditional skill based or cognitive assessment as a way of predicting potential and continuing career success.
So the question is, how do you develop your EQ? Since the concept of EQ was first introduced, over 3,000 scientific articles have been published on the subject. These studies conclude that while EQ is mostly influenced by our early childhood experiences, it can be improved with substantial effort, guidance, and coaching. EQ is an awareness of your actions and feelings – and how they affect those around you. It also means that you value others, listen to their wants and needs, and are able to empathise or identify with them on many different levels. Here’s an intriguing infographic from the Brighton School of Business and Management. It looks at why you might want to develop emotional intelligence as part of your own career capital.
Richard Madison is the Marketing Executive for the Brighton School of Business and Management which is based in the UK and offers business and entrepreneurial courses to a range of students. He regularly writes about topics that focus on business, management, leadership and workplace insights.