What is emotional intelligence?

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You've probably heard of the phase Emotional Intelligence before. Daniel Goleman coined the term Emotional Intelligence or EQ, and he likened it to traditional intelligence or IQ. Except EQ is about how smart we are with the human connection. In other words, how effectively we manage ourselves and our relationships. Goleman actually expanded on the work of Harvard Professor Howard Gardner, who identified nine types of intelligences in his book, Multiple Intelligences. While traditional education only focuses on developing two of these types, linguistic and logical mathematical, people can have a range of talents or intelligences.

Goleman focused on two of the nine. Intrapersonal and interpersonal intelligence. And developed that into his theory of emotional intelligence. Goleman's research and books launched a new movement in the world of business and management. In fact, the concept of emotional intelligence has become very prominent in leadership development. And there is now ample evidence to show that it's a key component of both successful leadership and organizations. Let me share some key findings with you. In the work place EQ is more than twice as predictive of performance than IQ.

And 80 to 90 percent of the professional competencies that differentiate top performers are related to emotional intelligence. Study after study bears this out. For companies that have implemented training on emotional intelligence, they've seen phenomenal returns on their investment. Thousands to millions of dollars saved through increased productivity, sales, improved customer service and better decision making. Some of the return on investment has ranged as high as a thousand percent. Pretty good, huh? The power of emotional intelligence makes sense.

After all, any organization is the coordinated effort of a group of people trying to meet the needs of another group of people, the customers. Any organization achieves its goal through a series of daily conversations, interactions, and decisions. Each of these involves humans, and the more emotionally intelligent they are, the more effective they'll be on every level. Emotional intelligence has two main components; Personal Competence which focuses on the self, and relationship competence, which is about others. Within each, are two areas, knowledge and management, creating a total of four quadrants.

The first quadrant is self awareness, or how well you know yourself. This area focuses on how well you know yourself, including your strengths and weaknesses, in comparison to how others perceive you. Ask yourself these questions. What are my strengths and weaknesses? Does my perception of myself align with how others see me? Where am I confident about my skills and abilities? The next quadrant is self-control or how well you manage yourself. This is about managing your emotions and your actions in productive and healthy ways.

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Published in: Business

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