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Hays US Blog

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The key skill every leaders must have

By: Hays Recruitment Expert on August 7th, 2020

Today’s world of work is filled with constant change and emerging challenges. Now more than ever, business leaders are faced with issues they have not encountered in the organization before.

All this can make work a place of fast changing emotions. In today’s world, there is an increasing demand to effectively manage your emotions and those of others. This skill is known as emotional intelligence (EQ) and while the collection of skills involved in EQ is often referred to as “soft” – there’s nothing soft about the impact these skills have on a workplace. Most people leave managers, not jobs so a better manager can mean greater staff retention rates.

Employers want people who are able to inspire others to stay focused and perform strongly, no matter what the environment or challenge. Their market position depends on it. From team leaders in the early years of their career right through to senior leaders, EQ is the key to powering individual success, the success of the team and ultimately the organization.

Excellent Leaders must be:

  • Great communicators with people of all levels in the organization
  • Able to stay focused under pressure
  • Respected by their peers
  • Able to inspire others
  • Consistent in their approach and performance

Employees take their cues more from how their manager behaves than from what they say. Actions always speak louder than words when there is pressure.

Developing the behaviors involved in EQ is like physical training – the more you use these skills, the stronger they become. The main behaviors involved in EQ are self-regulation, motivation, self-awareness, empathy and positivity.

5 efficient ways to start raising your EQ:

  1. Be aware of what emotional baggage you might be bringing into work: We can manage stress better when we are able to take a break from it. Recognize when you are stressed and know the stress relievers that work most effectively for you.
  2. Be completely engaged during all of your interactions: If you don’t have time to talk – say so, but then organize another time. Talking to someone while scrolling through messages or emails on your phone is not multi-tasking is not recommended. Be an active listener by giving people your full attention.
  3. Be quick to recognize the contribution of colleagues and team members, providing positive feedback whenever appropriate: Being appreciative of others helps them feel valued and a part of the team.
  4. Focus on your presentation and communication skills: The more confident you are expressing your thoughts and ideas, the better equipped you are to communicate effectively under pressure.
  5. Listen, pause, react: When the work environment intensifies, emotions rise. If you practice pausing and taking a breath before you respond to a heated or pointed comment, you will not only maintain control of your emotions but also be better able to contribute to solutions.
  6. Empathize with your team: We each go through our own struggles, and have things that go on that we don’t necessarily talk about. It is important to recognize this, so that your team feels like you understand them. It’s like the saying “put yourself in the other person’s shoes”. This will also help build trust between you and your team because they will feel like you are approachable and understanding. Ask your team how they are managing with their tasks and be ready to provide support if needed.

Developing your EQ will help you become a better leader, in turn resulting in a more focused and motivated team who deliver great results to the benefit of the wider organization. As you work on the above skills, you will start to see the positive results of your personal development all around you.

Are you looking to add strong leaders to your team?

Contact us today

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