Emotional Intelligence and Emotional Leadership

Manila Bulletin, October 27, 2010 | Go to article overview

Emotional Intelligence and Emotional Leadership


I appreciate the study done by David Caruso of Work-Life Strategies, John Mayor of University of New Hampshire, and Peter Salovey of Yale University, a colleague, and the one whom I consider as the father of the research on emotional intelligence.

In the book ''Multiple Intelligences and Leadership,'' they have made a clear connection between emotional intelligence and emotional leadership.

Indeed, if we intend to study leadership in the context of emotional intelligence, then we must first understand what leaders do.

Leadership is the influencing of others towards the achievement of a goal. Emotional intelligence can facilitate these functions, but a successful leader will need more than emotional intelligence to accomplish these.

IDENTIFYING EMOTIONS: When leaders are able to identify their own feelings and emotions, it leads to greater self awareness which is then manifested in their managerial performance. Such ability allows them to accurately identify the emotions of the group and of individual followers.

USING EMOTIONS: Emotional intelligence is an important component of effective leadership. Leaders employing high emotions are able to encourage open-minded decision making, planning and idea generation by taking into account multiple ideas. Leaders can muster enthusiasm for a project and energize, direct and motivate the group, and themselves.

UNDERSTANDING Emotionsmotionsmotionsmotionsmotionsmotionsmotions: This is the ability that provides the leader with an understanding on what makes people move. Understanding emotions allow the leader to pinpoint relationships between emotions, know the meaning that emotions convey, understand complex feelings, and determine how emotions shifts from one state to another.

MANAGING EMOTIONS: Emotions and emotional skills play an integral role in the day-to-day life of leaders. The ability to manage emotions will allow leaders to handle the stress of poor market performance, low sales, high product competition, among others. An emotionally intelligent response is viewed as being emotion-focused, wherein you use the emotions to deal with the underlying problem. Charismatic leadership is said to have its roots in managing emotions.

LEADERSHIP TRAITS: Trait model leadership outlines specific personality attributes thought to underlie leadership such as intelligence, extroversion, dominance, masculinity, adjustment, drive, motivation, honesty, self-confidence, cognitive ability, knowledge of the business, self-confidence, sociability, ambition and perseverance.

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