As people realize there is more to being a leader than simply having delegation skills and strong hunches, the focus shifts towards an individual’s ability to relate and interact with those they are supposedly leading. Emotional intelligence is a key component to fostering good relationships, and in turn being a good leader. Not only can emotional intelligence help you regulate your own emotions, it can assist you in assessing the emotions of those around you. Having the proper coping skills and awareness of the wants and feelings of the people you work with helps prevent situations from escalating, and keeping the peace in any scenario.
In any situation, it is important for an individual to have the skill to recognize and regulate their own emotions. Sitting in a position of leadership often provides stressful situations, as such, leaders must have the ability to deal with this stress and avoid acting out in stressful situations. Keeping calm, cool, and collected can inspire others confidence and establish trusting relationships – when people know you won’t be reactive they are much more inclined to bring ideas to you, and work with you in effective ways.
Empathy is a core trait that leaders need in order to be effective in their roles. Often in school, types of “soft skills” aren’t taught as frequently, or occasionally ignored all together. While running a business or leading a sports team seems like a solo affair in which relationships seems secondary, this could not be further from the truth. Business, by nature, is an event involving people, and even though people are expected to act “professionally” – this word having connotations of coldness and stripped of all emotions – people are still human. To lead and ignore this fact will ultimately end in failure. Successful leadership comes when the leader can relate to their followers. This article from Forbes gives more insight into the importance of empathy in leadership.
Managing and Building Relationships
Being a leader comes with a plethora of responsibility, one being the responsibility of being liaison between clients, new business partners, other companies, employees, etc. – and that’s just a list for a leader in the business world. Emotional intelligence plays a direct role in how successfully people can build new relationships, and well as nurture current relationships. Emotional intelligence helps an individual understand, manage, and acknowledge emotions effectively. There are countless benefits and advantages to having solid emotional intelligence skills because the backbone of a successful relationship comes from one’s ability to maintain constant and healthy connection with people.
While there are impersonal aspects in leadership, the role, by definition, constantly provides opportunities for interpersonal interactions. The more emotional intelligence someone displays, the more successful their leadership campaign will be.