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Does Your Team Have Emotional Intelligence?

By Josh McDonald, Project Manager with Nexus 5 Group

I am convinced that most workplace issues stem from one of three root causes:

1. Poor leadership/culture

2. Poor market/business plan

3. Lack of team emotional intelligence

Today, we're going to approach, what I believe to be, the third root cause: Emotional Intelligence (EQ).

Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

EQ is a two-part measurement. Most of us understand this to an extent, but I think we miss the second factor at times. The first is the ability to identify and control or regulate our own emotions. The second measurement of EQ is the ability to identify and understand the emotions of others.

To identify and understand others’ emotions we must do two things. We are going to touch on each below.

First, we must experience emotion in our own lives.

Here’s the tough part; there are healthy and unhealthy ways of experiencing human emotion. Many times, we are told this is not the place or time for emotions. We must push it down and grind on. On the flip side, some have created healthy boundaries or been given healthy arenas to feel and process the emotion. Pending your experience with emotional circumstances of life, this has either boosted your EQ or hindered your emotional growth.

We will not dive too deeply into the details of experiences. However, the best way of understanding is through experience. Joy, loss, anger, love… How would I really understand these if I had not experienced them? How would I understand someone else’s experience had I not experienced this myself? Our journeys are so different, yet so parallel.

Second, we must understand others’ journeys are different than ours.

Once I understand that others’ experiences may have taken a different road than mine, thus creating a different view, it opens me to embracing others through empathy. It causes me to approach others with open arms while searching for understanding. Now, this may not mean we always find agreement. However, we will find understanding and respect in the journey. We will grow together and deeper.

Teams win for several key reasons.

A couple of the key factors is the trust and depth of relationship that each member carries for the others. Those long days, trying times, joyful experiences, and playful moments are all tools in the development of emotional intelligence. A team with strong emotional intelligence is more resilient, more understanding, grittier, and more unified.

Coach emotional intelligence. Lead with empathy. Be respectively vulnerable. Challenge your team to grow. #servewell

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