Emotional Intelligence

EmotionalInteliigenceResearch shows to move up quickly in your respective career, you should have high emotional intelligence quotient. I think for all of our reader this is really an important topic. Emotional Intelligence is the ability to recognize and understand emotions in yourself and other and to use this awareness to manage your behavior and relationship. Emotional Intelligence IS NOT about suppressing emotions or being nice- it is about being aware and expressing emotions to manage to a positive outcome.

Emotional intelligence has four skills

Emotional intelligence

Let’s talk about each skills in details and there significance on our day to day activity.

  • Self-Awareness

    Self-Awareness is your ability to accurately recognize and understand your emotions as they happen. This includes knowing your strengths, your general tendencies for responding to different people and situations and how your emotions influence your behavior.

  1. To Increase your self-awareness, you need to embrace feedback with open arms. Research shows that the vast majority of people struggle to see themselves as other see them and the most accurate picture of anyone’s behavior comes from those around them. The best way to find out what other see is to ask them, Asking for feedback is easy-hearing it without getting defensive is not easy. Seeking feedback is difficult for most people. It can be scary when you are afraid to finally find out what people really think of you. Nonetheless, feedback from other won’t do you any good, if you are not open and receptive to other people’s perspectives, especially when they differ from your own.
  2. To know who and what pushes your buttons. We all have triggers etc. and when pushed you get irritated. Your buttons may get pushed by a wide range of people and things. It could be certain environment or certain things. Knowing what pushes your buttons will make them more tolerable for you when they happen and open the door to managing and unhooking those buttons.
  • Self-management

    Self-management is your ability to keep a pulse on your emotions so that you actively chose and mange what you say and do. This is a proactive approach to deal your emotions, instead of reacting to them, with the goal of always creating positive outcomes for yourself and other. One of the most interesting strategies for self-management is to take control of your self-talk. Much of the time, your self-talk is positive and it helps you through your day. Your self-talk damages your ability to self-manage anytime it becomes negative. Negative self-talk is unrealistic and self-defeating. It can send you into a downward emotional spiral that makes it difficult to get what you want from your life. Keys to overcome negative self-talk are:

  1. Turn I always or I never into just this time or sometimes

    Your actions are unique to the situation in front of you, no matter how often you think mess up. Make certain your thoughts follow suits. When you start treating each situation as its own animal and stop beating yourself up over every mistake, you’ll stop making your problem bigger that they really are.

  2. Replace judgmental statement like I’m an idiot with factual ones like I made mistake-

    Thoughts that attach a permanent label to you leave no room for improvement. Factual statements are objective situational and help you to focus on what you can change.

  3. Accept responsibility for your action and no one else’s-

    The blame game and negative self-talk go hand in hand. If you are someone who often thinks either it’s my entire fault or it’s their entire fault you are wrong most the time. It’s commendable to accept responsibility for your actions but not when you carry someone else’s burden. Likewise, if you’re always blaming others, it’s time to take responsibility for your part.

  • Social Awareness

    Social Awareness is the ability to recognize and understand the emotions and mood of individuals and groups. This awareness is necessary to control your reactions to others and manage relationships. We can usually determine the things above the surface but that is rarely the whole story. Social awareness skills allow us to see what may exist below the surface.

Social awareness involves listening and watching for what a person says or doesn’t say. If we are socially aware it will help us to respond in an appropriate manner. To be socially aware means understanding the information we receive from others as they interact with us and our emotions and thoughts.

Emotional-Intelligence-GridEmotions play a role in every interaction you have with another person, whether you are ware of them or not. They often influence the “back and forth” between two people more than the words being said. The ability to spot emotions in the midst of an interaction, understand their influence, and respond effectively is the essence of being socially competent. This can be very hard to do.


Social awareness allows you to:

  1. Better understand others
  2. Provide helpful feedback
  3. Communicate
  4. Identify problems before they escalate
  5. Make better decisions
  6. See and seize opportunities
  • Relationship Management

    Relationship Management is the he competence requires the ability to use all the above skills. It is using your awareness of your own emotions and the emotions of other to manage your relationship. It includes a) Communicating effectively b) Managing conflict c) Recognizing your needs and the needs of others.

Remember emotions play a role in every interaction you have with another person, whether you are aware of them or not. Emotions often influence the back and forth between two people more than the words being said. The ability to spot emotions in the midst of an interaction understands their influence and respond effectively is the essence of relationship management. This can be very hard to do.

Relationship management is the most advance skill. The place where most people trip us and fail to manage themselves successfully is during an emotionally charges situation. Whether, a heated debate between colleagues or a looming deadline, situations that elicit high-intensity feelings put your true self-management skills to the test. When you find yourself in an emotional situation, it is important to give yourself some time to think before reacting.

All the best

Contributed by Vaibhav Chandra (Class of 2009, IBS HYDERABAD)

Effective use of emotional intelligence in Leadership

IBS mba graduatesToday, effective use of emotional intelligence has become a necessary part of leadership excellence. The use of emotional intelligence in an effective manner can help the leaders at the highest levels of organizations in developing a competitive edge. They are able to lead the evermore difficult roles as leaders which only a few people can do and that is possible with the power of emotional intelligence.

A brief history of the evolution of the concept “Emotional Intelligence”

The term “Emotional Intelligence” was launched in the year 1990 when Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer coined this term. They described it as “Emotional Intelligence is a form of social intelligence which involves monitoring one’s own and other’s emotions and feelings thus making discrimination and finally using this discrimination in guiding one’s thought process and action. A valuable research program was also initiated by Salovey and Mayer to explore the importance and significance of emotional intelligence along with developing valid measures for E.I.

In the year 1995 Daniel Goleman released his bestseller book named “Emotional Intelligence” and this book became a landmark for spreading the popularity of the concept and the term “Emotional Intelligence”. With the rise of this concept, the importance of getting success in life as well as work was recognized. Organizations started recognizing how their leaders and managers need to grow their understanding of themselves and others.

Need for emotional intelligence in Leadership

The classical models of leadership do not involve the use of emotional intelligence in leadership and are usually associated with the great figures in history with a military style leadership. It presents a charismatic as well as ruling type of images of the leaders. Even today people use the same language for leadership which is a tough, bold and brave image with a strong urge to resolve a purpose. But the actual leadership needs today are different because of the following reasons-

  • The workforce today does not like the autocratic leadership style adopted by the leaders who followed classical models.
  • Leadership needs to match today’s growing sense of democracy and the freedom of workforce.
  • The employees today have more and more options to change the organizations because of the growing competitive environment.

For leaders to be successful in leading, emotional intelligence is essential. Well, you can easily judge who will succeed – A leader who often shouts at his team under stress or the leader who is always in control, calmly handling the situations?

Five main elements of Leadership

Daniel Goleman describes five main characteristics of emotionally intelligent people which are described below:

  • Self awareness
  • Self Regulation
  • Self Motivation
  • Empathy
  • Social Skills

MBA graduates

Let us look at all these elements in more detail and understand how to grow as a leader using them.

Self Awareness:

Self awareness means that you know well about your feelings and you well understand how your actions can affect the people around you. Being self aware when you are in leadership role signifies that you have a clear idea of your strength and weaknesses and you always behave with humility.

How can you improve your self-awareness?

Self awareness can be improved by keeping notes of your thoughts and feelings and writing them down on a paper. This will take just a few minutes and with the help of it you can move to a higher degree of self awareness.

Self awareness can be improved by choosing how you react on situations. Whenever you face anger or other strong emotions, slow down to examine why? Remember whatever the situation is, you can choose how to react on it.

Self Regulation:

Self regulation is important in the field of emotional intelligence and leaders who regulate them effectively rarely attack others verbally. They do not make rushed emotional decisions or compromise values or stereotype people. Self regulation is all about staying in control and not doing anything emotionally.

How can you improve self regulation in yourself?

  • Understand your values. If you really know what you can compromise or what not and what is important to you, then it will not be hard for you to make moral or ethical decisions. You will always make the right choice.
  • Do not blame others and make commitment to admit your mistakes and face the consequences.
  • Be calm and practice it. In challenging situations it is always desired by the leaders to be Do not shout on others to relieve the stress. Do deep breathing to make you calm. Write down all negative things on a piece of paper and throw it away. These all help you to challenge your reactions to ensure they are fair.

Self Motivation:

Self motivated leaders are highly motivated towards their goals and they set really high standards for the quality of their work. Improving self motivation can be achieved by the following things:

  • As a leader think what is your purpose of doing the job- Take some time to understand or remember what you loved in this job and what you want from this job. If you are unhappy in your role and you are struggling to find the purpose then try to understand the problem. Reaching the root of the problem can help to solve it positively.
  • Know how motivated you are. Assess yourself to know how motivated you are to lead. If you are less motivated then find resources which will help you in getting more and more motivated.
  • Be optimistic as the motivated leaders are always motivated. It does not matter what the problems they face.


Leaders should have empathy to manage a team or organization successfully. The leaders who have empathy and compassion are able to put themselves in someone else’s situation and work accordingly. They help others grow, stop those who are unfair and provide right feedback for those who need it.

Ways to improve empathy in yourself:

  • Take the time to look at situations from other point of view also. Look with other people’s perspectives also. It is ok to support your own point of view but think from other point also.
  • Show a positive body language. When you listen to others, be attentive to your body language. Do not cross your arms or bite lip which shows a negative body language. Learn a positive body language and show it to your employees when you listen them.
  • Respond to the feelings of your employees. If you find any employee working late, then tell him that you also do not like it and you are also frustrated with that. Provide compensation with paid time offs to the employee who is working extra hours.

Social skills:

Leaders who are good in this element of Emotional Intelligence have excellent communication skills. They are really good in gaining the support of their team with the help of social skills and communications and always encourage their team to do well in new projects and assignments. Leaders with good social skills are always best at resolving conflicts and change management.

How to improve social skills in yourself?

  • Learn how to resolve the conflicts well. If you want to succeed well as a leader then it is really important to resolve the conflicts between team members, customers and vendors.
  • It is really needed to have good communications skills to succeed in the art of social skills as a leader. You have to be a great speaker as well as a good listener.
  • Praise others- Without the art of praising others it is really difficult to succeed as a leader. Learning how to praise others is an art but gives good returns in your favor and also helps in gaining the loyalty of your members.

Thus it is clear that the ability to tune yourself with your emotions and having a good situational awareness are the powerful tools for a successful leadership. If you are leading a team and want to use the art of emotional intelligence successfully in Leadership then give some time to improve the 5 elements of emotional intelligence explained in this article. This will surely help you to excel in the future!

Contributed by Ashish Singh Parihar ( Class of 2008, IBS PUNE )