Emotional Intelligence and Bottom Line Results
Business decisions are made based on measured results and decisions on selecting training should be based on the same criteria. Our true story illustrates the ROI and impact of Emotional Intelligence skill-building on the bottom line.
Enhancing Emotional Intelligence (EI) skills can provide measurable organizational benefits(1) and, ultimately, positively impact the organizational bottom line. This is illustrated in the true story below.
Joe (not his real name) works as the Director of Engineering for a company that invents methods to improve refining processes and oil extraction. They then lease the patents on those methods to oil companies. By applying the EI skills he recently developed, Joe was able to contribute to his company's bottom line.
Joe was on his way to South America to talk to a customer who wanted to renew their contract with one exception, reducing the original $15 million contract to only $13 million. On the flight down, Joe was feeling anxious and worried about the meeting. After all, $2 million in revenue and an important customer relationship were on the line.
Recognizing his anxiety, Joe applied a few simple EI techniques he'd been taught to transform those feelings into more positive, productive thoughts and emotions. As a result, he came up with several positive options he could present during the meeting.
The meeting went fairly well, but there was one person from the client's company who was picking over the contract details, seemingly trying to thwart the whole negotiation process.
Instead of becoming defensive and frustrated, Joe drew upon his EI training, handling his own emotional reactions to the man's objections. He ended up convincing the oil company to agree to additional services and process improvements and to sign a contract several million dollars over the original contract.
Emotional Intelligence is not about being soft. It's about a different way of being smart. It's about managing yourself and using your emotions to positively lead others; to engage not just their head and hands, but also their hearts.
Putting EI Into Action
You feel the effects of emotional turmoil daily. What can you do? You can take action to develop your own emotional intelligence.
Start by increasing your emotional self-awareness and asking yourself, "What am I feeling right now?" several times a day?" Notice that the question is not "how" but "what" because we tend to answer the question "How am I feeling?" with the word "Fine" which tells us nothing.
When you figure out what you're feeling (such as anxiety, happiness, anger, excitement) you can use that information to help you decide what you should do or not do next. Simply put, with this information, you can more effectively make decisions.
Then, openly describe your feelings. If you have an issue on the table, and you find that you are feeling a bit anxious or concerned about it, simply recognize those feelings and share them in a matter-of-fact fashion. So often, if people are feeling anxious, they'll criticize, or find some detail to disagree with: "Those numbers can't be right."
Instead, the more emotionally intelligent thing to say is, "I have to tell you, I'm feeling a bit anxious about this decision.By disclosing your feelings, you give your team more information about you and your view, providing them with greater insight into your perspective. Discussing feelings improves communication and sets the tone for cooperation.
Third, get some EI skill training. Combining formal classroom sessions and coaching sessions improves the likelihood for successful EI skill development. Be sure the training is skill-based, that is, provides not only information about EI but also the chance to practice skills on real situations. And, be sure that the provider has documented quantified results. Business decisions are based on measured results and decisions on selecting training should be based on the same criteria.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Specializing in the area of Emotional Intelligence skill-building, Byron Stock is devoted to making work a place where people flourish and productivity improves. Typical improvements in personal goals range from 30% to 50%. To learn about Byron's quick, simple, proven techniques to harness the power of your EI, visit www.ByronStock.com.