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How to Apply Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace

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Emotional intelligence is fast becoming a term commonly heard around board rooms and human resource departments. Simply defined, it’s the ability to know and understand your feelings and how they affect your actions. In the workplace, emotional intelligence helps you manage your moods and reactions to make you a more effective, productive and less stressed-out employee. Rely on your emotional intelligence in a number of ways to make your working days more enjoyable.

Choose the Right Kind of Work

When you know what kinds of tasks and duties excite you and which fields tap into your passions, you will be more motivated to go to work. You’ll be less likely to procrastinate and have fewer doubts about your goals and abilities to reach them. People who develop higher emotional IQs tend to have a more balanced life all the way around. Work, home and play receive equal attention and loyalty. One does not have to interfere with another.

Enhance Leadership Effectiveness

As a manager or company leader, apply your emotional intelligence to your work to more easily assess the needs of employees. When you can understand the emotional impact of certain decisions on your staff, you will manage expectations more effectively, answer questions more readily and take action to reduce friction. Emotionally intelligent managers listen to their employees’ concerns without allowing their own feelings to interfere with judgments and decisions.

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Communicate More Effectively

You will be much more effective at getting people to understand you when you apply EI in the workplace. You’ll be able to apply persuasive tactics and techniques to get your point across, make a sale or influence your boss. Emotionally intelligent employees are clear when they speak, free of unaddressed issues or underlying motivations. You can nurture richer relationships when you apply EI with an eye on building bonds with others instrumental to your success. Additionally, EI plays an integral role in the development of team synergy and team building.

Manage Conflicts with Ease

The self-control you gain when practicing higher levels of EI can serve to help you avoid many conflicts. You can assess your feelings and react with purpose to the best result for everyone. People with high EI quotients tend to be more flexible and less likely to carry grudges or hold discriminatory attitudes toward coworkers. When you monitor your feelings during stressful situations, your own stress is minimized, making you a more effective negotiator.

About the Author

Linda Ray is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years reporting experience. She's covered business for newspapers and magazines, including the "Greenville News," "Success Magazine" and "American City Business Journals." Ray holds a journalism degree and teaches writing, career development and an FDIC course called "Money Smart."

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