Aren’t the qualities such as, intelligence, creativity, and passion that drive entrepreneurs to success? Is emotional intelligence (EQ) truly important for an entrepreneur’s success? And the answer is, Yes, it is. While the other qualities such as innovativeness and acumen are important, EQ is something that ensures their success.
Emotional intelligence and the subject of psychology were seldom associated with the field of entrepreneurship, but emotional intelligence was always taken for studying individual capability to understand and react to his/her emotions and values. For years now, EQ has served as the missing link in understanding how people with average IQs have outpaced some of those geniuses with highest IQs. Research and several studies have shown to us that emotional intelligence plays a critical role in people’s success and 90 percent of these top performers have high EQ. And similarly, there have been many studies that show the correlation between entrepreneurs’ success and their emotional intelligence.
Being an entrepreneur is tough, especially when it comes to making sacrifices, venturing into the unknown, and leaving behind their comfort. They do require a unique set of skills to make a mark in the business world, but the skill that builds the foundation for success is nothing but emotional intelligence. It is their social awareness that helps them to identify opportunities which many people just walk past by. This intangible behavior that is inherent in all of us in different amounts helps entrepreneurs into different situations such as resource management, negotiation, building customer relationships, handling stress, and delivering leadership.
But one might ask, what exactly is emotional intelligence and how do you define it? So, to understand it simply, “Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others” as described by Psychology Today. It is broadly made up of four skills:
Self-Awareness: It is your personal competence to understand what you see about yourself when you interact with others. Self-awareness is your ability to interpret and accurately perceive your own emotions and being aware of them as you understand your reactions in different situations.
Self-Management: It is your personal competence to understand what you do about those emotions. Self-management is your ability to adjust to situations in a positive and productive manner and staying flexible through the cognizance of your emotions.
Social Awareness: It is your social competence in terms of your ability to see and understand the emotions of people around you.
Relationship Management: It is your social competence in terms of what you do about your emotions in correlation with other’s emotions so as to achieve cohesive and successful interactions.
While the job of being an entrepreneur is way more demanding, it requires different traits and qualities to bond together to create miracles. But, why is it that emotional intelligence is the most important trait for the success of an entrepreneur? Here are the reasons how EQ works for an entrepreneur.
Builds better relations with employees and customers
When you have an empathetic leader who understands how to work around with everyone’s emotions, then he/she is likely to win the loyalty of their staff unlike those who are oblivious. Being aware of these non-verbal expressions helps in understanding not only the employees but also the customers, which further assists in knowing customer needs and thus allowing the organization to offer valuable services.
Reduces stress and helps in harder times
As an entrepreneur, it always helps in realizing and acknowledging your own emotions and feelings. Emotions that are unaddressed and are neglected, often bottle up thus causing unpleasant anxieties and tensions. Those who fail to use their emotional intelligence skills are more likely to face fatigue and depression, and would often turn towards less effective ways of managing emotions. Being emotionally aware helps make stress, doubt, and fatigue more manageable which eventually results in a stable state of mind that aids in tackling difficult times efficiently.
Creates positive environment everywhere
Those with high EQ are not only aware of their own emotions but also the emotions of people around them. Whether that is at work or home, they understand what expectations of others are and what makes them happy. This nurtures a healthy relationship and creates a positive atmosphere which is beneficial for everyone.
Considering entrepreneurship is majorly about dealing with people, a businessman’s success depends on a lot on how well developed his emotional intelligence is. The better you are at comprehending emotions of employees, customers, partners, vendors, and others, the better you will be in adapting your behaviors and actions in addressing the situations.