4 Winning Steps to Emotional Intelligence
Jeffrey Lurie, the owner of the Philadelphia Eagles, fired Eagles head coach Chip Kelly two years after giving Kelly a five-year contract. Lurie provided some insight into his decision.
“‘You’ve got to open your heart to players and everybody you want to achieve peak performance,'” Lurie said Wednesday. “‘I would call it a style of leadership that values information and all of the resources that are provided and at the same time values emotional intelligence. I think in today’s world, a combination of all those factors creates the best chance to succeed.'”
What does emotional intelligence have to do with management issues?
On his website, Daniel Goleman writes this about his book, The First 90 Days with Harvard Business Review article “How Managers Become Leaders.
“In 1990, in my role as a science reporter at The New York Times, I chanced upon an article in a small academic journal by two psychologists, John Mayer, now at the University of New Hampshire, and Yale’s Peter Salovey. Mayer and Salovey offered the first formulation of a concept they called “emotional intelligence.
Those were days when the preeminence of IQ as the standard of excellence in life was unquestioned; a debate raged over whether it was set in our genes or due to experience. But here, suddenly, was a new way of thinking about the ingredients of life success. I was electrified by the notion, which I made the title of this book in 1995.”
How can I gain greater emotional intelligence?
I can listen without bias.
When I fail to listen for any reason, I frustrate people. I fail to understand people. I limit the information I have when making a decision. When I bring my bias to a conversation, it is harder for me to hear what people are saying. I can listen without bias and withhold judgement until the person has had a chance to speak.
I can get the food and the sleep I need.
When I am hungry or tired, I think less clearly. I take things more personally. I become impatient. I react emotionally and not mentally. I lose perspective. Important things get lost in the clutter of emotions that high jack my thinking.
I can step back and take a break.
When people say things that anger me, my instinct is to pounce on what they are saying. Communication breaks down. Understanding disappears. I can handle the discussion better by stepping back and taking a break. I can start by simply asking, “May I get back to you on this?” The separation from the person allows me to separate the personality from the issue. I think more clearly and develop an effective way to continue the conversation. I can decide whether I need to discuss the issue at all.
I can focus.
Looking back at Lurie’s statement gives me an understanding of the benefits of emotional intelligence. To apply Lurie’s thinking to myself, I can develop “a style of leadership that values information and all of the resources that are provided.” I can allow myself to see the big picture. I can make better decisions based information and not on my emotions.
Image: Jakob Montrasio/Flickr