Hints and clues to develop and turn into strengths
John Boitnott (2017) identifies a number of ways to develop EQ to be a better leader:
- Surround yourself with higher emotional ‘IQs’ that you – learn from others by observing them and the ways in which they conduct themselves with others
- Read more – simply reading more, or using audio books, that give insight into emotional intelligence and its impact will provide ideas
- Practice active listening – listening is harder than you think! As humans we wait our turn to speak rather than actively listening, often already formulating our responses. Consciously listening to people and giving them your full attention will give better insight and understanding into situations and peoples’ feelings
- Learn from your mistakes – we often assume – wrongly! – that we learn from our mistakes, but many times we forget and repeat the mistakes at a later date, continuing to be surprised by the result. A good way of stopping this is to keep a learning log where we write down things that have gone badly, but also things that have gone well. If we reflect on these and identify why we think the result occurred and have a plan of what we do next time the situation occurs the brain accepts the learning more readily, and we always have a back up document to return to for ideas if required
- Choose your leisure activities wisely – find activities that you enjoy that provide both physical and mental challenges- these could be things like reading, the gym, team games, yoga etc. as these will help to increase EQ
- Embrace lifelong learning – ‘Every day is a school day’ implies that every day we can learn from what happens Effective people develop their emotional intelligence to give them a head start in their interactions with others. A collaborative leader needs to consider carefully how gaining a higher EQ can help them to lead more effectively and provide a better working environment. Continuing to develop personally and professionally not only gives a person a wider range of knowledge and understanding, but also builds confidence.