Thursday, December 12, 2013

What Is Emotional Intelligence and Why Should I Care?




Someone asked me what I haven’t written daily blogs the past week.  There’s a good reason and I’m happy to share it with you.  I've been really busy equipping myself with knowledge and certification so I can help you!

This time last week I was in Denver wrapping up a series of classes that led me to becoming certified to administer the EQ-i 2.0 assessment in order coach around emotional intelligence.  I’m also certified to administer the EQ360 when the time is right to measure a leader’s performance in 360 fashion.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional Intelligence is a set of emotional and social skills that collectively establish how we:

  • Perceive and express ourselves
  • Develop and maintain social relationships
  • Cope with challenges
  • Use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way

What is IQ?

IQ (Cognitive Intelligence) is a measure of an individual’s intellectual, analytical, logical and rational abilities, it is concerned with verbal, spatial, visual and mathematical skills.  For the 24.5 years that I’ve worked with technology professionals, I’ve worked with people who have primarily invested their time, energy, education and certification efforts into supporting their IQ.

I'm In The People Business

When I’m asked about what I do for a living, I tell people that I work with technology professionals.  I don’t have any specific technical competencies but the people I work with do.  I’m in the people business, the people side of technology professions.

As a student of people and human nature, I’ve always been fascinated with what allows some technology professionals to progress to the “C” suite for example and what holds others back.

I’ve always known that what holds people back from rising and progressing in technology careers is their behavior but it wasn't until recently that my curiosity around the subject became a quest that I had to satisfy with education and certification.  I had to find a tool that would allow me to help my technology coaching clients to see and understand how their interpersonal behaviors were impacting their career development. 

I found the solution!

Emotional Intelligence…Another Definition

Another way to define Emotional Intelligence is like this:  “a set of emotional and social skills that influence the way we perceive and express ourselves, develop and maintain social relationships, cope with challenges, and use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way”

Why Does Emotional Intelligence Matter To You?

If you're content with who you are and where you are in your career, this topic probably isn't all that interesting to you.  However, if you want to gain a competitive edge and your want to see your career continue to grow and prosper, I invite you to read a little further.

Statistics That Matter

Studies show that  while IQ  is responsible for up to 21% of one’s professional success depending on their field of work, IQ is generally responsible for only 6% of one’s professional success.  You can be the smartest person in the building but if you don't know how to get along with other people, your IQ soon diminishes in importance to everyone around you.

Studies around Emotional Intelligence suggest that between 27% and 45% of one’s career success is tied to Emotional Intelligence. 

We’re born with a certain IQ.  Our IQ (Cognitive Intelligence) is pretty much fixed throughout life.  Emotional Intelligence (EI) or Emotional Quotient (EQ) or Emotional Effectiveness is not fixed. 

Emotional Intelligence can be measured, coached and calibrated.

The Impact of Emotional Intelligence

Here is another way of looking at what Emotional Intelligence means to your career.  This comes from one of the books I’m currently studying called “The EQEdge.”

“In order for us to take advantage of our cognitive intelligence and flex it to the maximum, we first need good emotional intelligence.  Why?  Because regardless of how brainy we might be, if we turn others off with abrasive behavior, are unaware of how we are presenting ourselves, or cave in under minimal stress, no one will stick around long enough to notice our high IQs”

What Was My Quest Again?

I’m passionate about coaching.  For me, that means that I’m in my zone where I'm exercising my strengths when I'm helping others to improve, when I’m helping other people to reach their goals.

Once I began to understand Emotional Intelligence and the impact that good EI and bad EI has on a person’s professional and personal growth, I studied to find the best way to measure behavioral traits (Emotional Intelligence) to help my clients to fine-tune and calibrate themselves for future success.

Security Career Coach

My EQ-i 2.0 coaching services will soon be part of my career coaching services.  Working on one's EI is not just a leadership coaching effort.  The best time to calibrate one's EI can be in their 20's, 30's and 40s.

Security Leadership Coach

My EQ-i 2.0 coaching services will soon be part of my leadership coaching services. Technology leaders likely reached their current level of career success because of their IQ, their technical prowess.  In the spirit of Dr. Marshall Goldsmith's (One of my coaching mentors) book "What Got You Here Won't Get You There", what propelled a technology leader into leadership may not keep them there if they haven't invested time to fine-tune and calibrate their Emotional Intelligence.

How About You?

What will you do to move your career forward in the New Year?  Part of your success will come from aligning yourself with work you were built to do.  We address this with CoreClarity in my Career Coaching practice. 

Once your career is properly aligned with your strengths (your natural hard-wiring), the next step is to calibrate your behaviors.  Your career can prosper when you clearly understand how your behaviors impact those around you and you take action to improve in areas that impact others in an adverse way.  

That’s what Emotional Intelligence coaching can do for you.

What can I do to help you to get to the next level?

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