Emotional Intelligence: Timeless Advice for Managers

Jan. 17, 2018
Human-to-human interaction will always be a coveted skill for managers (Insider Intelligence Jan. 2018)

These days you hear so many conversations and read so many articles on artificial intelligence and its impending impact on our lives and business community. Someday, AI will rule every aspect of the world; however, when talking about working with and managing others, there is another type of Intelligence that I believe is equally, if not more, important: emotional intelligence.

But there’s a twist – it turns out there is a link between artificial and emotional intelligence and that should be important to you, but more on that later.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional intelligence, or EQ, is defined as the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one's emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.It is not a new term. The phrase was first coined in 1990 by Peter Salovey and John Mayer (not the guitar-playing pop artist).  While they initially wrote about this phrase, it was Dr. Daniel Goleman who popularized this trait in his 1995 international best-selling book, “Emotional Intelligence - Why It Can Matter More Than IQ.”

If you hire and manage people and your business is dynamic and growing, then emotional intelligence is as relevant today as it was in 1990 – maybe more so. Let’s set aside the technical skills you may need for your current management role and focus on hiring and managing others.

If you look at the fabric and makeup of today’s workplace, it really covers quite an expanse of age groups. Traditionalists or the Silent Generation, Boomers, Gen x’ers, Millennials, Centennials…. That is five generations of workers! Many pundits tell you that you need a different management style for each of these disparate and distinct groups. Do you really? Does everyone believe that you need a different management style for each group of people just because of their age?

I would suggest that if you just get in touch with your emotional intelligence and build that awareness into your business tool kit for hiring and managing others – you can effectively manage anyone from any age group. 

Here are the traits of emotional intelligence as defined by Dr. Goleman. Understanding and building these five key traits into your daily management and support of others can turn an ordinary manager into a powerhouse.

  • Self-Awareness. The ability to understand your own personal emotions and drives and to understand the impact your emotions have on others.
  • Self-Regulation. The ability to control or redirect your emotions that could be considered disruptive or impulsive and to think before acting on those emotions.
  • Internal Motivation. The ability to be passionately driven to achieve and succeed regardless of money and status.
  • Empathy. The ability to understand the emotional makeup of other people and to consider those emotions when making decisions.  
  • Social Skills. The ability to manage relationships and build networks, and an ability to find common ground and build consensus and rapport.

AI and EQ Meet

Some reports claim that within the next 10 years, 50 percent of all jobs will be eliminated and replaced by artificial Intelligence or some derivative of it, such as robotics, machine/deep learning, etc. That’s the next 10 years, not some future dystopian world.

Experts add that jobs and roles that involve key human-to-human interaction will not be eliminated – those emotional intelligence skills will actually be more sought out in the future.

To quote John Pugliano, who wrote The Robots Are Coming: “Think like a human, not a machine.” Ultimately your worth will be defined by your ability to create and interact, not just complete repetitive tasks. Sage advice and clearly centered on a keen awareness of your emotional intelligence.

Ric McCullough is vice president of sales and customer service for PSA Security Network. To request more information about PSA, please visit www.securityinfowatch.com/10214742.