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Why is Emotionally Intelligent Leadership an Organization’s Asset?

<strong>Why is Emotionally Intelligent Leadership an Organization’s Asset?</strong>

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Summary- An emotionally intelligent leadership is no longer a good to have, but a must-have. In this blog, we explore why emotional intelligence is a non-negotiable skill for leaders and how it enables them to foster increased collaboration, resolve friction, and produce far-reaching benefits for themselves, their teams and their organizations.

The ability to handle emotions intelligently, i.e. Emotional Intelligence has been in discussion for quite some time now. However, in these unprecedented times, the new age workstations and norms have propelled the focus on emotional intelligence to a whole new, but much needed, level. Emotions play a significant role in decision making, trust-building, employee engagement, and conflict management. When it comes to laying the foundations of a human-centric workforce, the role of Emotional Intelligence is pivotal. 

Emotional Intelligence Defined!

Emotional Intelligence is one’s ability to understand and manage their own and others’ emotions in any ‌situation. It trains leaders to be empathetic. Emotionally intelligent leaders practice self-awareness, self management, and can effectively gauge the expectations and needs of their team members. 

Emotional Intelligence – The Back Bone of Effective Leadership

“Even before you begin to lead others, leadership demands leading oneself emotionally, being aware, and being in command of one’s own emotions. The real challenge lies within. One needs to be able to empathize with others and forge relationships that are entrenched in minds and hearts. Emotional Intelligence is the deciding factor in one’s success as a leader” – Amrita Singh, AVP- Content Products at KNOLSKAPE.

Irrespective of their cadre in the organization, all leaders must harness their emotional intelligence skills to not just empower their teams, but the entire organization as a whole.

Here’s why: 

Emotionally Intelligent Leaders Are Committed to Improving Workplace Productivity, Team Performance, and Morale

Emotional Intelligence determines how leaders interact with their teams. Those with high emotional intelligence usually do better in their interpersonal skills, thereby boosting employee morale.

A highly emotional intelligent leader is likely to be quite self-aware. Leaders with high emotional intelligence respond in ways that their employees can relate better to, ‌thereby improving team performance, mitigating clashes, and addressing issues when required the most. 

When leaders bear witness to a positive culture and supportive environment from the top-down, employees feel more heard, valued, and cared for at work; this translates to increased job satisfaction and productivity. 

Emotionally Intelligent Leaders Raise Their Employees through Empathy and Listening

No one wants a boss who’s short-tempered, intimidating, and unfair. The modern workplace demands leaders that excel in people-centric skills. To excel at people management, leaders need to put themselves in their employee’s shoes. They need to analyze why someone in their team is behaving a certain way. This could mean listening to their concerns and respecting them enough to have authentic conversations, among other things. This is an effective way the leaders can get a read on their team members and make sound decisions accordingly.

Emotionally intelligent leaders set the tone in relationships, gauge fairness objectively, and see things from another’s perspective. By conveying the gesture, “We’re in this together.” or “ I’m just a call/text away”, Emotionally intelligent leaders show beyond doubt that they’re invested in their teams.

Employees are often inclined toward compassionate and emotionally grounded leaders. They feel more comfortable voicing their thoughts and opinions at work without being put in a spot. Also, emotionally intelligent leaders are the reasons why some organizations experience less attrition than others. Employees are likely to stick with organizations that are led by emotionally adept leaders. 
Here’s what Sreeram Ramakrishnan, Consultant- Content Products at KNOLSKAPE, has to say about the importance of empathy in leaders – “People leave managers, not organizations. Leaders’ empathy reassures people that they are valued members of a larger unit; lack of empathy reduces relationships to transactional levels and destroys organization unity.”

Emotionally Intelligent Leaders Are Great at Building Team Camaraderie in the Workplace

“Becoming aware and fine-tuned with one’s emotions allows a leader to make rational decisions, overcome negative thoughts, handle volatile situations with ease, as well as understand why others behave in a specific manner. And all these traits are the building blocks of effective leadership”, says Anusuya Mathur, Director Consulting, KNOLSKAPE. 

According to Harvard Business Review, “Many employees say that having friends at work makes their job more enjoyable, worthwhile, and satisfying.” And with the shift to remote and hybrid working, a culture of companionship becomes increasingly important. Workplaces will be more about camaraderie and less about answerability, and that’s where the role of emotionally intelligent leaders will majorly come in. 

Emotionally intelligent leaders devote extra time to forging their team camaraderie. They make sure that each team member in the team is well-versed in each other’s potential, personalities, background, working style, and goals. This eliminates ‌doubts, resentment, and disputes down the line. The deeper people understand themselves and those around them, the better they can accomplish goals and surpass difficulties. After all, teamwork and communication can win in most scenarios.

To Set Up Healthier and Harmonious Workplaces, Leaders Need to Spearhead Emotional Intelligence at All Levels!

According to Gallup’s study of decades of data and interviews, “25 million employees report leaving organizations because of terrible managers”. Employee turnover is an important metric for any organization’s health. In today’s hybrid work line, real engagement with employees is essential. People leave toxic workplaces because they don’t feel safe, respected, valued, or heard within the company culture. And this often boils down to how leaders inspire their teams. 

The present-day employee expects a safe working environment where he/she can freely voice their opinions and that is where the role of emotionally intelligent leaders becomes crucial. Leaders play an important part in cultivating their team’s emotional dynamics. When leaders model the behavior they want their teams to exhibit, they see their teams develop the same traits.

From Solving Organization-Wide Challenges to Managing People Holistically, an Emotionally Sensitive Culture Showcases the Human Side of Businesses!

How customers feel when they speak to internal stakeholders is directly proportional to how they perceive the business. Customer support teams that check-in periodically, demonstrate empathy, and follow through all the promises gain trust in the eyes of potential customers; this ensures maximum retention and valuable referrals in the years to follow.

Having a culture that promotes emotional intelligence improves both internal and external customer relations. Deeper the understanding of emotional intelligence among sales/marketing teams, better is their ability to make emotional connections and increase sales. 

Similarly, customers also resonate with businesses that bring out their human side. Embracing an emotionally sensitive culture into operations and marketing can be a trailblazing way for organizations to seize profitability. As organizations continue to re-assess business practices, a great customer service experience becomes paramount. Being aware of a customer’s emotional needs plays a key role in strengthening brand loyalty, which then translates to more sales, ROI, and revenue.

The KNOLSKAPE Approach to Developing Emotional Intelligence at Work (EI@Work)

At KNOLSKAPE, we offer leaders with personalized, first-hand learning experiences that acquaint them with the skills needed in the real world. By promoting the Learn, Apply and Reflect philosophy, our experiential learning programs identify gaps in the learner’s knowledge and areas that need to be improved. 

Developing Emotional Intelligence at Work (EI@Work) is a hands-on simulation-based offering that helps leaders get better at identifying and dealing with emotions. Besides, it also creates an environment that fosters a culture of trust building and empathy- all in a safe setting where learners can make mistakes, and learn from them, and reapply the learning in-person.

The simulation helps leaders, managers and individual contributors:

Learn

  • Develop their emotional vocabulary.
  • Identify emotions and how to read them.
  • Deconstruct emotions to understand the cause and effect better.
  • Address emotional states to improve productivity and creativity in themselves and in others.
  • Exhibit empathy in a way that builds stronger relationships and enables better teamwork.

Apply

  • Apply the learning in a gamified environment.

Reflect

  • Use their experience in the simulation to hone your emotional intelligence at work.

Upon completion of the simulation, a detailed report is generated that gives learners (leaders) a glimpse of their performance in the simulation; this is followed by a debrief by the facilitator. Learners can further act on these insights by applying them directly on the job.

To know more about the simulation, check our latest PR that talks about the concept and framework used along with key business outcomes in the simulation. 

Who says Emotional Intelligence can’t be learned? Take a tour of our simulation and see for yourself how Developing EI@Work helps you channel negative emotions, foster meaningful bonds, and promote cohesion within your team. 

Let’s connect! We’ll be happy to answer your queries and walk you through the simulation. 

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About KNOLSKAPE

KNOLSKAPE is a global leader in experiential learning with a mission to help organizations and employees become future ready. Using a large award-winning portfolio of simulations aligned with 100+ competencies and cutting-edge talent intelligence, KNOLSKAPE produces stellar outcomes for more than 375+ organizations across 75 countries. Driven by research and thought leadership, KNOLSKAPE offers its products and solutions in a flexible subscription model powered by omni-channel delivery.

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