EQ is More Important Than IQ

To be a leader, you must utilize and balance both intelligence- IQ & EQ. While your IQ helps strategize, it is the EQ that helps focus on being ultra-perceptive of situations, for emotional intelligence to be effective, it has to start with yourself


Emotional Intelligence is widely recognized as a valuable skill that helps improve communication, management, problem-solving, and relationships within the workplace. It is a skill which may not always be inherited or one is born with but can be improved with training and practice, says researchers and counsellors.

IQ (Intelligence Quotient) is a measuring unit for our intelligence potential, which has no direct relationship to our present intelligence. It is the EQ (Emotional Quotient) which makes you socially active and creative. EI (Emotional Intelligence) is the heightened awareness of others' emotions, including your own. The most successful professionals thrive in their respective fields due to their EQ, not IQ.

Leaders in the corporate world need to develop their self-awareness, social awareness, and relationship management skills to get the best out of themselves and their team members. They also need to understand themselves and their team members on a far more scientific level so that they can ascertain their strengths concerning the team based on the type of personalities and intelligence across members. This can be done to leverage, diversity and configure exceptional teams who create products and solutions while outperforming their competitors. Building on these emotional intelligence skills and seamlessly weaving them with a clear vision for the work will not only increase their confidence and motivation but also inspire their peers to follow suit.

When there is a lack of emotional intelligence in the work environment, particularly in times like now, the structure comes trickling down creating a domino effect of the consequences. It hampers self-leadership and team leadership, followed by strained communication which leads to a disenchanted and disengaged staff where they ultimately lose their ability and motivation to think and create effectively.

The way leaders use their emotional intelligence during this time will determine the achievement of their goals, metrics, and financials. Understanding Emotional Intelligence at your workplace, will not only improve leadership performance, staff engagement, productivity but will also prepare your staff for a future that may be characterized by further uncertainty and volatility.

India is going to be the 3rd largest economy by 2030 and with such an economy always in demand for a highly skilled workforce, it becomes imperative to master the skills which help you stand out.

Emotional intelligence helps you build solid seamless relationships, helping you achieve your career and personal goals. It can also help you to connect with your feelings, turn intention into action, and make informed decisions about what matters most to you.

Emotional intelligence is commonly defined by:

1. Self-management

Emotions are important pieces of information that tell you about yourself and others, but in the face of stress that takes us out of our comfort zone, we can become overwhelmed and lose control of ourselves. With the ability to manage stress and stay emotionally present, you can learn to receive upsetting information without letting it override your thoughts and self-control. You’ll be able to make choices that allow you to control impulsive feelings and behaviors, manage your emotions in healthy ways, take initiative, follow through on commitments, and adapt to changing circumstances.

2. Self-awareness

It’s very important to learn how to balance your social performance with emotional integrity and discover how you can communicate with more openness and transparency. We need to learn how to read body language and tone of voice to become a better communicator and become a truly active listener.

Managing stress is just the first step to building emotional intelligence. You recognize your own emotions and how they affect your thoughts and behaviour. You know your strengths and weaknesses and have self-confidence. But being able to connect to your emotions—having a moment-to-moment connection with your changing emotional experience is the key to understanding how emotion influences your thoughts and actions.

3. Social awareness

Social awareness means you have empathy. You can understand the emotions, needs, and concerns of other people, pick up on emotional cues, feel comfortable socially, and recognize the power dynamics in a group or organization. By investing the time, effort and paying attention to others, you’ll gain insight into your emotional state as well as your values and beliefs.

We need to explore how negative and positive emotions impact our brain’s performance and discover the key drivers that improve our personal and work performance. This heavily impacts our brain agility, sleep, exercise, and nutrition. You have to take control of your negative self-talk to get a hand on your impulses.

4. Empathy

Emotionally intelligent people are good at stepping into another person's shoes and understanding how they feel. Empathy is understanding other people’s emotional makeup. It’s considering others' feelings, especially when making decisions. Some trademarks of empathy include expertise in hiring and retaining top talent, and the ability to develop other people, and sensitivity to cross-cultural differences.

In the workplace, empathy allows you to understand the different dynamics between colleagues and supervisors. It also allows you to recognize who holds power and how it influences the behaviors, feelings, and interactions that form such relationships.

5. Relationship management

It’s important to learn how to build trust with your co-workers, keep an open-door policy, and show that you care about them. Understand why you need to explain your decisions before making them and what causes conflict in the workplace and at home. Learn how criticism and stonewalling destroy relationships and how to deliver feedback that inspires and connects rather than disconnect you from others.

Once emotional awareness is in play, you can effectively develop additional social/emotional skills that will make your relationships more effectively fulfilling. It’s important to know how to develop and maintain good relationships, communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, work well in a team, and manage conflict.

6. Leading a Diverse Team

Knowing yourself and knowing others is such a key element of emotional intelligence and being an effective leader. It gives you the perspective and skills you need to get the most out of your co-workers and create a collaborative team that is inspired by each individual’s unique contribution to the whole.

It is important to know your value proposition as a person and understand how you can sell yourself as a valuable brand. This way you end up igniting the same personal understanding of brand value amongst your team members.

7. Leading your team to Greatness

Leaders need to explore how your vision, conscience, discipline, and passion impacts the performance of your team. We discover exactly what high-performance team’s need in the 4th industrial revolution and how you, as a leader, can fulfill these needs. It’s important in leading your team to greatness and giving your team members the skills to develop them into stages so that they become unleashed and self-managed. Understand the concept of servant leadership and how your emotional intelligence will ensure that the value you exchange between yourself, your team, and your company serves the common good, solves difficult problems, improves productivity, and achieves results you have never achieved before.

EQ is more important because a prestigious degree and a lucrative job means nothing if you have no-one to share your successes with. EQ triumphs IQ in “soft” domains. It helps you gauge your employee’s mood, their emotional state, and understand their reactions and weaknesses better. This mostly helps in managing teams with a strategy and approach that is both progress-driven and compassionate. It brings self-awareness into being which makes it easier to understand one’s own needs and likely reactions if certain events occurred, thereby facilitating the evaluation of alternative solutions.

To be a leader, you must utilize and balance both intelligence- IQ & EQ. While your IQ helps strategize, it is the EQ that helps focus on being ultra-perceptive of situations, for emotional intelligence to be effective, it has to start with yourself. You can’t distill or enhance other people’s well-being, improvement, and sense of self without first understanding how you operate on an emotional level. What distinguishes leaders is usually their level of emotional intelligence and it is those skills that help to develop a more effective workplace.

Progression in your professional ladder might be determinant of the work you do and the people you associate with but the journey of a million miles starts with the single step and that single step is within you!

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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eq iq Niraalee Shah The British School of Etiquette India


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