Leadership is defined as influence. Our ability to influence is dependent upon the quality of the relationships that we build with our constituency. The quality of these relationships is largely a result of our effective use of our emotional intelligence.
Emotional intelligence or EQ skills fall into four categories or domains – self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. Each of these domains contain a few skills that help a leader (or any person, for that matter) relate to others. We don’t necessarily need to master all of the skills within emotional intelligence, but we need a good representation from each of the domains. There is, in fact, a hierarchy among the domains where strong self-awareness is a prerequisite for both self-management and for other or social awareness and both self-management and social awareness are prerequisites for relationship management.
I recently wrote an article for PolymerOhio Manufacturing Services describing EQ and its importance as part of effective leadership. That article goes into more depth as to the various skills within emotional intelligence and the relationship between the four domains.
As leaders we should be cognizant of our strengths and weaknesses in the area of emotional intelligence and working to strengthen our ability to relate effectively with those that we hope to influence. What’s your EQ?