One of my favourite quotes would have to be by Maya Angelou:
“I’ve learnt that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Not only will people never forget how you make them feel, the science of emotions tells us how you make people feel has a direct impact on how they think, make decisions, how people behave and how they perform.
One of the most robust, well established theories in the social sciences is that there’s a direct link between the way we feel and the way we perform. And you probably don’t need a social science degree to appreciate that people perform at their best when they feel valued, cared for, trusted and well-informed. Conversely, when people feel stressed, worried, frustrated or upset at work, they are not going to perform at their best.
So if you happen to lead or manage people, this is kind of a big deal. I mean, I cannot think of any Manager, Leader or Business Owner who doesn’t want people performing at their best.
If performance is on your agenda and you haven’t factored in any actions to ensure people are feeling their best at work so they can perform at their best, where do you start and what do you do?
My first tip would be to do your own research on Emotional Intelligence (EQ). Don’t just rely on my word, do what you can to raise your own awareness. If you’re a book worm, I recommend the most widely read social science book in the world, ‘Emotional Intelligence, Why It Can Matter More Than IQ’ by Daniel Goleman. If you’re more of a “watch the movie” kind of person, I highly recommend the two episodes we filmed on THE HUMAN ELEMENT with Dr. Ben Palmer; “Why it Pays to have Emotionally Intelligence People in Your Business” and “How to improve your Emotional Intelligence as a Leader” To watch these episodes (and plenty of other great business shows) you just need to download
the free BRiN app”.
But as I explained when introducing the episode “Why it Pays to have Emotionally Intelligence People in your Business”, don’t expect to be magically ordained with emotional intelligence just by reading a book or watching a show (no matter how good they might be). My second tip would be to Measure. Measure your Emotional Intelligence and measure the emotional intelligence of your Leaders, your Managers and your people. And yes Emotional Intelligence can be measured (refer to tip 1).
As I often explain to participants that come along to one of our workshops, what you learn is not what’s important, it’s what you do with what you learn that matters. So my final tip is to get some coaching. Emotional Intelligence is a skill that can be learnt. It doesn’t matter how much experience you do or don’t have. It doesn’t matter what your personality preferences are. Age, gender, culture, does not impact your ability to learn and apply these skills. So measure it and get some coaching. And once you’ve had some coaching, measure it again. After all, if this is all about performance, we need to be able to measure our progress.
Yes, I think Maya was spot on when she said people will never forget how you made them feel. And the science of emotions says that people will always perform at the best when they feel their best. Their emotional intelligence impacts this. Your emotional intelligence impacts this. Emotional intelligence is a skill that can be learnt by anyone.
You do the math.
Founder & Managing Director, Human Tribe
Original article published August 8, 2016