Emotional intelligence is about managing and understanding emotions – both your own and others’. Unlike the IQ you’re born with, you can develop and increase emotional intelligence. To be a good leader – and project manager – it’s something you should always improve.
Why emotional intelligence?
Emotional intelligence is key to excellent leadership because regardless of your technical knowledge, when you progress up the career ladder it always comes down to people and, more specifically, managing people.
A good leader is self-aware and able to regulate their emotions. They motivate a team and show empathy to help bring people together; managing relationships, encouraging collaboration and helping others resolve conflict.
And the lack of emotional intelligence has an impact on leadership: it’s said people don’t leave companies, they leave managers and I believe that’s true. If people are micromanaged, they don’t work to their best and that’s a sign that their manager lacks a holistic approach to people management.
A good manager effectively manages their own and other people’s shortcomings. Critically, they lead not manage. People need to be motivated to want to do something for you rather than be told or pestered via email.