As a business professional, you have probably noticed how leaders with high EQ (emotional intelligence or quotient) positively impact their teams and organizations. Individuals with EQ understand and manage their emotions while recognizing how they influence others’ emotions.
In the workplace, EQ is the ability of professionals, particularly managers and leaders, to recognize their feelings and those of others, distinguish between them and adjust their emotions and reactions accordingly. In the online Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a Concentration in Management program from Southeastern Oklahoma State University, graduates obtain the wide range of characteristics related to EQ needed to unify business teams and maximize their performance.
According to Daniel Goleman, internationally known psychologist and author of Emotional Intelligence at Work, EQ accounts for almost 90% of what sets high-performing leaders apart from otherwise similarly skilled and knowledgeable peers. A TalentSmart study found that EQ is the strongest predictor of workplace performance, and the World Economic Forum rates EQ sixth in its list of ten skills needed to thrive in the fourth industrial revolution.
The consensus among researchers is that high EQ makes a leader a more effective communicator, problem-solver and manager because they understand how to harness emotions to impact team success. Yet, interestingly, there is no known correlation between IQ and EQ, making leadership EQ a distinct set of skills that can be learned and developed by any manager.
Foundational Elements of EQ
These ten common qualities distinguish leaders with high EQ:
- Awareness of their emotional impact on others and empathy for others’ feelings
- Ability to tune into what others are experiencing cognitively and emotionally
- Innate talent to harness the effects of “empathetic matching” and “emotional contagion”
- Self-regulation capabilities to manage their own emotional states and stay flexible
- Capacity to navigate social complexities and human interactions successfully
- Understanding that emotions yield information that can lead to creative problem solving
- Knowledge of strategies to guide themselves and others to more productive emotional states
- Strong intuitions about what people are thinking based on non-verbal cues like body language
- Vocabulary to convey their own emotional experiences and others’ to engender support
- Openness to continue developing their EQ repertoire
When Leaders Lack EQ
Leaders and managers without EQ can negatively impact team unity and performance in several ways, including:
- Poor communication: Leaders who lack EQ may have difficulty communicating effectively and relating to others’ perspectives, leading to misunderstandings and conflicts.
- Lack of trust: When leaders cannot recognize and manage their emotions, subordinates may feel uncertain about their leader’s abilities and motives, leading to mistrust and a breakdown in team cohesion.
- Low morale: Leaders who lack EQ may struggle to inspire their team members. They may be perceived as uncaring, which can lower morale and lead to disengagement and turnover.
- Decreased productivity: When team members feel disengaged or unsupported, they are often less motivated and less likely to contribute their best work.
- Higher conflict: Leaders who lack EQ may struggle to manage conflicts within their team, leading to increased tension among team members and more turnover.
How EQ Strengthens Team Connectivity and Performance
Psychologists and researchers have suggested that EQ positively affects how leaders communicate with their teams and how team members interact. A leader or manager with EQ knows how to control their emotions and behavior at work, creating a positive work environment that supports the exchange of ideas and feedback. This leads to productive teamwork and performance with high morale, employee engagement and job satisfaction. Their team members learn from them how to handle workplace stress and conflict effectively. Through positive role modeling from a leader with EQ, employees can develop their own leadership potential.
A Curriculum That Develops Leadership EQ
Southeastern Oklahoma State University’s online MBA with a Concentration in Management program curriculum emphasizes EQ development throughout the curriculum. Students learn more about this subject in-depth in courses like Principle Centered Leadership & Ethics and Contemporary Issues in Management. These both help students explore leading issues in the field and apply effective decision-making and resolution practices.
If you want to develop and blend the best of your innate IQ and learned EQ talents in a program dedicated to maximizing your management and business potential, this program aligns with your goals.