Harness Your Emotional Intelligence – an Essential Skill for The Future

I first became interested in Emotional Intelligence otherwise known as Emotional Quotient (EQ) way back when I was studying psychology as part of my degree course.  Once I read Daniel Goleman’s book on the subject I was sold and since then I have been working to improve my own Emotional Intelligence in addition to incorporating Emotional Intelligence in many of the courses that I develop or teach.  Some years ago, I qualified as an EQI assessor, I use the Emotional Quotient Inventory EQ-i 2.0, one of the most widely used Emotional Intelligence assessment instruments to establish my client’s EQ strengths and weaknesses.  From my experience, EQ awareness is a powerful change agent for personal and professional development.  

What is Emotional Intelligence?

You might want to ask what is Emotional Intelligence?  Understanding EQ and its benefits can be challenging for some; after all, EQ encompasses a range of personal traits and soft skills that are not always easy to define.  So, let’s start at the beginning; the term Emotional Intelligence was created by Peter Salavoy and John Mayer in 1990 and it was later popularized by Dan Goleman in his 1996 book Emotional Intelligence.  Emotional intelligence or EI is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, and those of the people around you. People with high Emotional Intelligence are keenly in tune with their emotions, understand what they’re feeling, the meaning of emotions, and how their emotions affect other people.  I explain to my clients that EQ simply helps us to effectively navigate the world using our emotions. According to the EQi-2.0 model, there are five main categories of Emotional Intelligence:

  • Self-Expression
  • Interpersonal
  • Decision Making
  • Stress Management
  • Self-perception

Within each category, there are subscales i.e., elements of EQ that are closely related to the main category.  For example, the three subscales related to interpersonal Skills are social responsibility, empathy & interpersonal relationships.  The combination of scores from each of the categories combined is what makes up a person’s ‘Total Emotional Intelligence’ score. 

The EQi-2.0 Model

Emotional Intelligence & Leadership

According to research EQ is a key skill for current and future leaders thereby rating this skill amongst the top ten skills currently in demand according to the World Economic Forum. Having Emotional Intelligence does not guarantee success, but it is seen as an essential skill for professionals in leadership or influencing roles.  One interesting fact that Goleman mentions in his book is that IQ only accounts for about 20% of success in life, with the remaining 80% being made up by other factors, including Emotional Intelligence.  Leaders who score high in Emotional Intelligence are typically:

  • Very comfortable giving and receiving feedback
  • Very good at solving problems especially in highly charged emotional or tense situations
  • Excellent time managers who meet tight deadlines without becoming flustered
  • Deal competently with challenging relationships and generally achieve win-win outcomes
  • Managing situations where resources are scarce – they are good at improvising/critical thinking  
  • Respond to change in an open and flexible way
  • Accept that setbacks and failure are just part of the normal way of things

Improving Your Emotional Intelligence

Science tells us that emotions precede thought; therefore, if we are not in control of our emotions (or lose control) we run the risk of diminishing our cognitive abilities and our decision-making/reasoning powers which will, in turn, affect our interpersonal relationships and opportunities in general.  The first step towards improving our Emotional Intelligence is self-awareness and discovery – the EQi -2.0 or EQi-2.0 leadership assessments are invaluable for anyone who wants to understand more about their EQ baseline.  The research tells us that EQI is not a static factor, unlike IQ which tends to be static in adults over a certain age (it peaks somewhere between the ages of 18 & 25).  Improving our EQ on the other hand is seen by experts as a lifelong pursuit.

In our Personal Life Improving our EQ will:

  • Help us to have difficult conversations without carrying feelings of hurt
  • Help us to manage our emotions especially in situations where we are feeling stressed or overwhelmed
  • Help us to improve relationships with the people we care about
  • Encourage us to leave situations or people who are toxic or adding stress to our lives

In our Professional Life Improving our EQ will:

  • Ensure that trusting, sustainable interpersonal relationships are paramount in our daily work
  • Help us to resolve conflicts or navigate a situation before a conflict arises
  • Help us to become leaders and role models capable of coaching and motivating others
  • Help us to become workplace or team ambassadors capable of promoting a culture of collaboration and inclusion
  • Ensure that leaders and influencers are capable of building and maintaining psychological safety within teams

What our EQI Clients have to say:

“The EQ-i test was extremely helpful for me to review where my challenges will lie when becoming a people manager. It gave me a good insight into who I am as a person and how others will most likely perceive me. The results really helped me to have talking points for my interviews for a leadership position. I had data to back up my strengths and weaknesses and how I should be moving forward. This helped me in getting the role in the end.  When Janet talked me through the results, she provided me with the confidence I needed to get through the rigorous interview process, and I am very grateful for her help. I would highly recommend this service for anyone who’s looking to grow in their career or is looking to expand their people skills. Even if you’re not applying for a new role, it provides valuable insight that anyone who’s looking to improve themselves can use.” DM

“I recently completed an EQI emotional intelligence assessment with Janet. Janet is a fantastic trainer. Her guidance and direction gave me a very direct understanding of my current situation and future goals. I found the whole experience really interesting and engaging. I feel I am now more focused on myself and my future career choices. I would highly recommend this course and the new links training team” – Niamh Walsh

If you would like to learn more about EQI assessments you can visit our website on https://www.newlinkstraining.com/eq-i-2-0-assessment/  or if you would like to schedule an assessment please feel free to contact me on 086 3897409. 

Janet Tumulty

8th October 2021