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Building Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence, or EQ, has very quickly become a popular management concept for today's business leaders. Essentially, having a high EQ gives you the ability to realize the moods and emotional state of yourself and, just as importantly, that of others. It means that you are able to take control of stressful situations for yourself or your team and that you can easily diffuse difficult situations in a positive and calm manner. Clearly, managers who possess high emotional intelligence are in a much better position to lead their teams to success, especially during times of ever-changing business conditions and uncertainty.

So, is it possible then for one to develop emotional intelligence? While not an easy feat, it is still possible for one to enhance their existing emotional knowledge. To enhance this ability, you must examine your personal strengths and weaknesses with respect to dealing with people and understanding their emotions and temperaments, as well as your own. You must then look for ways in which to build upon your key strengths. This concept will be familiar to readers of outlined in Marcus Buckingham's book, Now, Discover Your Strengths, which states that people often spend too much time focusing on eliminating their weaknesses instead of making use of their actual strengths.

Both traditional intelligence (e.g., "IQ"), and emotional intelligence play an important role in successful leadership. In order to truly be an effective leader, it is a necessity to match your skills, knowledge and experience with an understanding of the human element which makes up the workplace. That is, after all, what emotional intelligence is all about. But in order to do this, you must have an understanding of your own strengths, have a desire to build upon them, and seek out ways to understand and build upon the strengths of your team members. That is, after all, what effective management is all about.

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