What have Emotions got to do with Business?
At our December Concannon Connection event held at Lumbers in Leicester recently we discussed the theme of emotional intelligence. Having a good ‘emotional vocabulary’ will help you manage your people and your clients, especially if you’re facing a difficult conversation. Emotional intelligence is all about being able to communicate effectively in different situations. If you can connect ‘emotionally’ with your team, you will be able to motivate people. Understanding people’s emotions is a really useful management skill.
Emotions are contagious
We did a quick exercise where we asked each table to list how many emotions they could think of – we quickly hit 60 different emotions, from feeling merry to melancholy, embarrassed to exhilarated, angry to apprehensive – the list goes on! Next, we asked each table to check in with each other to see how they were feeling at that very moment. Stop and consider how you are feeling right now? You’re probably feeling more than one emotion. This is completely normal. When you’re going about your business, you will be experiencing different emotions. However, people will be affected by your emotions, so you need to be consciously aware of how you are feeling and the effect this may have on others.
The Science behind Emotions
We are emotional beings. Our emotions affect the way we interact with each other, in both our personal lives and in the workplace. We generally measure intelligence in terms of our IQ – our ability to reason and problem solve, but this can be of little help if you’re facing an angry colleague. Understanding emotions and being able to respond effectively can have a huge effect on the way we do business.
Do you consider yourself to be ‘emotionally grounded’? Do you know what the term ‘emotional intelligence’ means? Do emotions mystify you? Some people are better than others at reading and dealing with emotions. Being emotionally intelligent can help you with your clients and suppliers, as well as your personal life!
So, how do you become more Emotionally Intelligent?
This is such a vast topic, it would be impossible to cover every element in this blog or at one single event. We’ll blog about emotional intelligence again in the future but it’s about being tolerant, accepting and understanding. To give you a guide, here’s a few tips:
- Be aware of how you are feeling and how this could affect others around you. If you are experiencing negative emotions, it’s important to be able to remove or mask your feelings, so you don’t ‘infect’ others. This is especially important if you’re a leader.
- Ask others how they are feeling – for example, at the start of a team meeting, go around the table and ask each person to be honest about how they are feeling at that moment. This is a great ice-breaker and will give you a good idea of whether they’re able to face the main meeting topic. If they’re thinking about the 200 emails they’ll be facing after they leave your meeting, their mind won’t be focused on you.
- Communicate with empathy – take your time to try and understand how others are feeling. They may have an unmet emotional need that could potentially clash with a certain response or action. Show them that you care – people like to be asked!
Deal with any emotions first
Being emotionally intelligent means that you can recognise and deal with people’s emotions from the very start. This will ensure the rest of the meeting or situation you’re in goes far more smoothly. Not only will you be able to interact better with people, but you will be able to influence them too. This is also a crucial part of ‘selling’: once you know how people are feeling, you can then move on to logic and reasoning.
Next Concannon Connection event
Our next event will be on 9 February 2018. For those of you who have been before, you know the rule – there’s no charge, but I do ask that you bring someone along with you. This could be a business contact or your best friend, it doesn’t matter. To find out more about our Concannon Connection events, Small Business Club, or Director’s Forum, please...