The Importance of Having an Emotionally Intelligent Workforce

What Is Emotional Intelligence (EQ); Let Alone BRAND Emotional Intelligence? A lot of research has been done in the field of EQ for many years. It’s only more recently been brought to the forefront by leading experts-to name a few: Daniel Goleman in Working with Emotional Intelligence, Robert E. Kelley in How to Be a Star at Work and Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves in The Emotional Intelligence Quick Book.

So, what is Emotional Intelligence anyway? According to Daniel Goleman it is “the capacity for recognizing our own feelings and those of others, for motivating ourselves, for managing emotions well in ourselves and in our relationships.”

EQ alone explains 58% of a leader’s job formation DISC performance (TalentSmart®). 90% of top performers are high in EQ (TalentSmart®). A study of 200 companies worldwide indicates a difference in productivity (Goleman) – 1/3 of the difference is due to technical skill and cognitive ability – while 2/3 is due to emotional competence.

Have you ever experienced a situation as a customer with an employee (of the company you were doing business with) who was just totally unaware? The employee didn’t and couldn’t even recognize their own emotions as they were occurring? You could see it in their face and body language. And as they couldn’t acknowledge their emotions they experienced within themselves, it was impossible for them to manage their emotions as they interacted with you; let alone aware of the subtle or overt cues from you so they could respond in a positive and productive way to your needs.

These types of situations are further intensified when you experience the same thing over and over with a company with whom you are doing business, until finally you say “ENOUGH! I can’t take it anymore!” Well, think about this. The majority of customers (and I bet you’re one of them) WANT TO DO BUSINESS with the brands you frequent; but companies and their employees just give you REASONS NOT to!

Take the airline industry for example. If more airlines focused on hiring and developing their people for emotional intelligence, they would be a lot more productive and have a lot more satisfied customers. One of my recent experiences involved a flight cancellation. It was due to a mechanical issue and lack of availability of a replacement aircraft and alternate airline flight to my destination city. Although disappointed, all my fellow passengers were eager to get rebooked as we stampeded like a herd of cattle to the gate agent desk.

As I was standing in line, I overheard one of the gate agents say that our luggage was being forwarded to the destination city anyway. I looked at another passenger. We raised our eyebrows in unison. We were commanded to stay behind without our luggage. No “say-so” in the matter. A lot of customers scheduled for this flight didn’t even live in this city (including ‘MOI’). The thought of our luggage being sent in advance was absurd! As you can imagine, we all began to question the logic. Someone asked, “How can you ship our luggage if you don’t have a plane to fly?” Obviously, it made no sense whatsoever.

The situation brewed like a magical potion in the pot. The ‘herd’ grumbled and expressed further displeasure with comments like, “That’s B___ S___! “You can’t possibly be serious!” and so forth. It became very apparent that this gate agent was irritated with our complaints as she suddenly yelled out, “I don’t appreciate your tone with me. I expect to be treated with respect!” She was so absorbed in her own emotions that she could no longer recognize her lack of self-awareness and put herself in our multitude of shoes; let alone manage the situation productively.

My fellow passengers fumed as this gate agent refused to question the original information received about our luggage. We pleaded with her to reconfirm. Needless to say, we were outraged with her behavior and lack of sensitivity. The gate agent next her was very aware and tried to smooth things over. It was he who picked up the phone for clarification on the luggage situation and after further investigation…he gently whispered in her ear, we received inaccurate information. He then proceeded to inform us our luggage would be at baggage claim so and so. Oh, I must say, his colleague was not pleased. She was so self-absorbed and unaware of her emotions and actions. She just huffed