Emotions are inevitably a part of everyday experiences in the workplace. However, emotional responses may be labelled as ‘overreacting’ or simply brushed to the side, meaning that the true cause could be misjudged or possibly, never addressed. Therefore, being conscious of, and regulating your emotions, can help you to avoid embarrassment and regret.
Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, as well as the emotions of others. It can contribute to success within leadership and management, foster the relationship between you and your staff, and enhance your people skills.
Traits of high EI in management can include:
Not taking out anger or intense emotions on others
Having high EI means that you can recognise that strong, instinctive responses could be inappropriate in the workplace and do nothing but escalate the situation. Being self-aware and reflecting on how your emotions can affect other people, will help you to stay focused, and accounting for your actions will earn you the respect of your team.
When you find yourself getting frustrated or upset, slow down and ask yourself: Why am I reacting this way and is it appropriate? How can I improve the situation and not let it negatively affect my staff? What have I learnt from this?
Empathising with your staff
Showing that you truly care about the wellbeing of the people you work with is a sign of good empathy. Simply just talking to your staff every day and listening to their concerns can help you develop your awareness of your team’s emotions. Understanding the perspective and challenges of individual staff members will allow you to tailor support and connect with others.
You should also encourage feedback and discussion from your staff on your behaviour and actions and look for ways to improve. This will show your staff that you value their insight.
Motivating and encouraging your team
Having a positive mindset even when facing challenging situations will help you boost your team’s morale. Leading by example and showing that you, as a manager, can healthily control your emotions during times of stress can encourage them to do the same.
Everyone is motivated in different ways, and being able to understand the members of your team and what their goals and strengths are, will help you tailor motivational actions individually.
Maintaining healthy work relationships
Managing change, conflicts between staff, and difficult situations while controlling your emotions and acting rationally is essential. Being able to communicate effectively with different types of people and bringing them together as a team, while creating a sense of belonging in the workplace, is crucial to creating a good culture and retaining experienced employees.
Users of the Development Zone can access a range of related courses on subjects such as, Managing Negative Emotions, Managing Conflict, and Empathy in the Workplace, through our Content Catalogue.
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