Emotional intelligence is a widely discussed topic that was first introduced into in the workplace over twenty-five years ago. Simply put, it is a set of emotional and social skills that influences the way you perceive yourself and how you interact with others. There are five realms and 15 scales.
Emotional intelligence (EQ) is different than IQ, as IQ has to do with intellect, rational ability, memory, verbal and math skills. Also, IQ is inborn whereas EQ is learned.
Emotional intelligence plays a valuable role in determining the success of people in their careers, much more so than IQ. People may have great knowledge and understanding of business, but if they cannot get along with others, they will be limited in how far they can go. The benefits of emotional intelligence are many including the ability to:
Unlike personality type, which is inborn and does not change, emotional intelligence is learned and can be improved with practice. Your personality type can make you more vulnerable in certain areas of emotional intelligence, but the good news is that you can adapt and overcome in those areas. For example, someone who is very extroverted in their personality may come across as overly harsh and direct to co-workers. Emotional intelligence compensates for this by first being self-aware, and then tempering self-expression so as to not offend others.
The best way to train people in emotional intelligence is by using improvisation and role play activities. The idea is to take the concepts presented in the training workshop and put them into practice right away. By doing this, the participants are able to master new skills very quickly, therefore, maximizing the benefit of the training. Here is a description of such a training exercise:
Participants pair off with someone in class and are told to act out a scenario involving an angry customer and an employee. Using what they have learned about emotional intelligence, they must resolve the issue with the angry customer so as to restore the relationship and restore trust in the organization. The participants then switch roles and are given another scenario involving an angry customer.