Welcome to edition #27 of our news series, where we share with you the latest resources we’ve found on social skills, making friends, and more. In this edition, we’ll learn how emotional intelligence is just as important in business as having a high IQ, and find out what one trait will make you a truly successful employee. Don’t forget to subscribe to the newsletter so you don’t miss any future editions!
Move Over, IQ… There are New Kinds of Intelligence in Business: Emotional & Social Intelligence
Emotions play a larger role in business than we realize. Being able to recognize your emotions and those of others can help you make better decisions for your professional and personal life. Having high emotional intelligence means you have an understanding of your own self-worth as well as your strengths and weaknesses.
This article in the Business Chronicle suggests that emotional competencies such as self-confidence, initiative and empathy not only help you succeed in sales and long-term strategies but also make you more prepared to adapt to changing conditions in the marketplace.
Paul Sanders’ commentary:
How To Use Social & Emotional Intelligence To Your Advantage
Social & Emotional Intelligence consists of 4 parts. Each part adds up in enhancing your social ability to function and be happy socially (at work and in general). Let’s review them here:
1. Be Aware of Your Emotions:
This helps you understand the ways you feel as you interact with others. The more understanding you have, the less frustration you’ll feel, the more you’ll understand yourself. Understanding your emotions helps you make sense of what happens to you while you’re interacting with people.
Emotions are signals. They let you know that maybe you like or admire someone, you may be very excited about a promotion, or you may realize that you’re frustrated because your values don’t align with the environment you work in.
Being aware of your emotions (positive or negative) helps you get your logic and your feelings in-sync. That way, you’re not constantly frustrated, not knowing why and how things happen to you in social situations, with colleagues and friends.
Be aware of your emotions so you can make sense of what happens to you with friends and colleagues.
2. Manage Your Emotions:
Managing your emotions is about having your emotions serve you instead of hindering your success. Over-excitement about a new project or idea, for example, may be taking your eyes off the bigger picture and what you need to focus on.
Another example would be to compare yourself constantly with a co-worker or partner, and have that comparison habit (feeling superior or inferior) prevent you from being grateful for your own progress. Learn to manage your emotions towards – and in reaction to – others so you can have a more sane and positive overall social life.
Manage your emotions so you can have more positive power over your social life.
3. Be Aware of Others’ Emotions:
Having that sense of how the other person feels, can help your communication and interaction with them in a variety of ways. This is your empathy muscle: your ability to “put yourself in other person’s shoes.” It allows you to understand their perspective and where they’re coming from.
By getting outside your head for a moment and getting awareness of the other person’s feelings, you avoid giving them the feeling that you’re out-of-sync. They start to view you as someone who gets them, someone who they see eye to eye with. They can feel that you understand them logically, but also understand where they’re coming from and understand what they may not want to put into words.
The moment when someone says “Yes! You got it! That’s how I felt/ That’s what I mean!” they’ve already put you ahead of the pack.
4. Affect Others’ Emotions:
Affecting others’ emotional states is a very useful social skill. From calming down their negative emotions, to enhancing their positive ones, this can be a real social glue. Best friends do this all the time, and you don’t have to wait until you’re really close to someone to try and affect their emotions when appropriate.
Sometimes, just a smile can make someone’s day. Other times, a raising of eyebrows can make someone double-check their arrogance. Another example would be to talk about the big picture and what really matters, to get someone unstuck with current issues that are affecting them too negatively.
Positively affect others’ emotions and they’ll unconsciously remember that it feels good to be around you.
If you add these four abilities to your social skills, you can make your personality more attractive, and leave most people with a sense that they had a significantly pleasant interaction with you, each time they meet you.
The One Trait Successful Employees Have in Common
Employees typically gauge their success on competing with coworkers to climb the corporate ladder. According to this CNBC article, it’s a different trait that dictates true success.
Top performing employees are committed to helping their team shine. Companies actually search for collaboration skills when looking for new employees. True teamwork means helping the company succeed as a whole, not outshining your workmates. Having great communication skills and being willing to help your coworkers with projects will take you further in your career than you realize.
Paul Sanders’ commentary:
Companies and teams are systems. In each system, some conditions need to be there for that system to work effectively and produce great results. A crucial element in that is the interactions between the different parts of that system. In companies or partnerships, it’s all about the interactions between the people.
I highly recommend improving your social skills, overall, to be able to function well within any team. The more social skills you have, the better you can adapt to the teams or business partners you deal with. This is not to say that you need to change who you are so you can fit. On the contrary, it’s about understanding yourself better so your interactions can be satisfying to you and serving the businesses you’re involved with.
This is why techniques for overcoming loneliness and making friends can not only make your personal life richer and happier, but also boost your competence and confidence in the professional world.
Make sure you check out my Book and Social Skills Training, and start having your social life be a positive trigger in making all of your interactions more satisfying. Sometimes, all we need is a first push to start the positive and successful momentum!
– Paul Sanders