Emotional Intelligence matters

January 09, 2019

Successful leaders play a big role in inspiring and engaging others. They focus on team collaboration to build better synergy and increase productivity, share vision by articulating the big picture to others and drive strategy by helping people see their share in that big picture. Emotionally intelligent leaders are able to gauge others' responses and develop reliable ways of communicating with everyone which reflects on the organisation’s performance and emotional climate.

Self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship management are the four quadrants of emotional intelligence. It’s about how we perceive, process, control and express our emotions. Emotional intelligence contributes to our well being, decreases stress levels, improves team performance, enhances leadership capabilities and allows for better decision making abilities.

Leaders today are required to build strong relationships with board members, business partners, stakeholders and competitors to reach organisational goals. They need to demonstrate political understanding, recognise that influence is built on effective relationships and networking. Effectiveness in leading self, self-regulation, leading others and leading organisations requires a good understanding of our own motivations, feelings, thoughts and behaviour as well as those of others; this enables us to apply our rationale to make sense of situations and use our technical capabilities more effectively.

Leading self is about being aware of your strengths and areas of development, striving towards continuous improvement, acknowledging your own blind spots and hindering beliefs, setting high standards, empowering others and having the ability to delegate. Recognising that there will be challenges along the way, and therefore, staying optimistic, focusing on solutions and picking yourself up when things go wrong is important.

Self-regulation is about managing emotions and having the ability to keep calm and deal with pressure effectively. Leading others requires unlocking the potential of others. It’s about creating an environment where employees feel engaged and valued and also understanding what matters to them, what drives them and how these motivations relate to the organisation. Practicing flexibility and adaptability, having the willingness to listen and respect the expertise of others and to change your mind, if necessary are essential. The ability to demonstrate real empathy and undertake the most difficult workplace conversations with sensitivity is key.

Mastering leadership of organisations requires inspiration, accountability and relationship building. Understanding, managing and processing emotions is the key to personal and professional success.


Elham Hennessey

Director of DevelopMe Consultancy


Also read: Coaching as an organisational strategy to drive growth