EQ for Leaders Simplified

Hi meaningful leader,

To continue our chat about emotional intelligence, for today I would like to unpack the most common skills linked to EQ and how these apply to us as leaders.

*takes sip of coffee*

As little kids in grade school, intelligence and therefore, our intellectual abilities were measured by a number within the IQ range. IQ stands for Intelligent Quotient, which refers to the “relative intelligence” of an individual.

Don’t get me wrong, being intelligent is important, but is not by far the main driver for success. As leaders, a key element for team building is our ability to relate to others and be relatable to them, because team-building is relationship building. Therefore, our ability to create and foster human connections is paramount; that’s where EQ comes into play.

What is EQ and why do we need to care?

EQ is the “special something” in each of us that is intangible, yet palpable at the same time and that helps us become more effective when dealing with ourselves and others. Emotional Intelligence affects our ability to manage behaviors, navigate social complexities, and make personal decisions in the quest of building something positive.

Emotional intelligence consists of four core skills that pair up under two primary competencies: personal competence and social competence.

Personal competence is your ability to stay aware of your emotions and manage your behavior and tendencies. It comprises your self-awareness and self-management skills, which focus more on you individually than on your interactions with other people. 

  • Self-Awareness – Your  ability to recognize your own emotions and understand their  impact on your thoughts and actions. You are clearly aware of your weaknesses and your strengths, and you manage to project self-confidence. In other words, you understand which skills you need to work on, which behaviors serve you and which must go, and how your actions and habits are impacting or promoting your success.
  • Self-Management – Your ability to control impulsive behaviors, reactions, or feelings as well as to the healthy management of your emotions, it also refers to your ability to take initiatives, adapt to changing circumstances, and follow through on commitments. Self-management helps you learn how to regulate your emotions and how to best react to any given circumstances in the best possible way.

Social competence is your ability to understand other people’s moods, behavior, and motives in order to respond effectively and improve the quality of your relationships. It is made up of your social awareness and relationship management skills.

  • Social Awareness – refers to your ability to “read the room”. You’re empathetic. You are capable of putting yourself in others’ shoes and understand their emotions, needs, and concerns. You’re also able to pick up on emotional cues, feel socially comfortable, and recognize the power group dynamics within a team or group of people. Navigating the challenges of corporate life can be daunting, so having the ability to relate to others, understand their body language, voice intonation, facial expressions, and so on, it’s key to best approaching uncharted situations and ultimately gain influence.
  • Relationship Management – Your ability to develop and maintain good relationships, practice clear communication, inspire and influence others, work well in a team, and successfully manage crises/conflicts. Relationship management is pivotal in team-building.

As leaders we need to be attuned with our environment and develop the skills necessary to create authentic and lasting relationships. Yet as previously stated intellectual ability alone won’t build the path to success, especially if leadership is our calling. 

One key element —-> EQ is not only applicable to our team interactions,  but it also allows you to deal with intangible things like stress, time management and task prioritization; which will have a direct impact on your ability to perform as an individual, as well as as part of a team. In other words, it’ll help you stay sane, so it’s really worth looking into!

More on this in next week’s article…

Remember that people will forget what you said, but they’ll never forget how you made them feel.

Thanks for reading and God bless,


Always rooting for you!


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