Emotional Intelligence, the Key to Personal & Professional Success

Many would argue that the number of people we have impacted in a positive way determines our successes, be it personal or professional. The secret ingredient to those positive impacts is possessing a strong hold on your Emotional Intelligence— the ability to identify and manage your emotions and connect to the emotions of others.

Image: WOC in tech chat 

Image: WOC in tech chat 


Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EQ) can be broken up into two key perspectives. The internal perspective of EQ—Personal Competence — can be viewed as balancing your self-awareness and self-management. Whereas, the external-facing perspective—Social Competence— is viewed as balancing your social awareness and relationship management.


Per Peter Salavoy and John Mayer—who coined the termed—Emotional Intelligence is defined as “the ability to recognize, understand, and manage our own emotions; in addition to recognizing, understanding, and influencing the emotions of others.”


In a nutshell, Emotional Intelligence is the capability to recognize the impact of your own emotions on yourself, as well as on others, especially in high-pressure environments. Leveraging your EQ is essentially understanding social interaction, operating on your interpersonal skills, and exercising those skills to be aware of social cues.


The Core Competencies of Emotional Intelligence:

Self-Awareness— Recognition of emotions and your ability to perceive them, and their potential affects, as they arise.

Self-Management— Self-control of your emotions through environmental adaptability, positive outlook, and being end-goal focused. Managing your behavior and tendencies as a result of your emotions.

Social-Awareness— Exercising empathy (“understanding and sharing the feelings of another”) by picking up on the emotions of others and understand where those emotions potentially derived from.

Relationship Management— Use the awareness of your emotions and the emotions of others to create a positive and ultimately successful, positive interaction.


RELATED:  EQ Vs. IQ, Which Is More Important?


How do these perspectives, and your management of them, affect the level of your personal and professional successes?

The Advantage of Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace

As an individual with the aptitude to perceive emotion in any given situation, you position yourself as someone who can navigate the world of social cues. The workplace is a perfect example of an environment with high social cues, as it is comprised of people from all different walks of life, with their own worldviews and social perspectives.


Exercising your EQ in workplace situations such as team meetings, managerial 1:1s, coffee-break encounters, and company Happy Hours will enable you to be identified as someone people want to be around and interact with. This will help you network within your organization, and potentially outside of it, as well as propel you to the top of the “[insert name] would be a perfect fit for this project” list.

 Photo by  Kyle Glenn  on  Unsplash

 Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash


Leveraging Emotional Intelligence in your Personal Life

Honing your Emotional Intelligence while…

Under Pressure:

Tip #1- Performing Under Pressure by J.P. Pawliw-Fry outlines the S.O.S Method for reacting to high-pressure situations:

  •  Stop (disconnect from the trigger)— take this opportunity to identify your emotion to the trigger and separate yourself from it.
  •  Oxygenate— Breathe. This minimizes chemicals in the brain causing stress.
  • Seek information about what would best serve me— determine the best positive route to get to the end-goal.


In a Confrontation:

Tip #2- Practice mindfulness by understanding your thinking and your part in the confrontation (accountability).


Making a Decision:

Tip #3- Exercise “change tolerance” by recognizing your innate emotional reaction to the potential decision.  Interpret that emotional reaction and leverage that knowledge to offer additional options.


How do you utilize your Emotional Intelligence to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically?

By Joanne Augustin  

Joanne Augustin is a Copywriter between the hours of 9am to 5pm and a Writer/Content Strategist every other hour in between. She is the founder of the blog Career.Ambition.Growth, a resource for those who are trying to strive towards those three areas. The blog provides practical insights made to be easily implemented and turned into a goal to work towards. Joanne and her writing tone is the equivalent of black coffee with no sugar added — she is bold and without fear when it comes to providing guidance and giving an unexaggerated, realistic perspective on whatever topic she is presenting.