Emotional intelligence is one of the most important and necessary qualities in the modern world. In general, emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to recognize and regulate one’s own emotions and others’ emotions (McShane et al., 2018). At the same time, people with a high level of emotional intelligence are valued in almost any field of activity, since the interaction between leaders and subordinates, or employees and clients, requires attentiveness to others’ needs. People who hold ruling positions and manage a team especially need this skill as their effective leadership depends on it. I, as an assistant manager, relate to such people, since I have to support the CEO and manage a team of assistants. Even though I have a fairly high level of emotional intelligence, reflection on this course helped me assess my strengths and weaknesses and find ways to improve them. However, while I have made some improvements in my emotional intelligence and communication with other people for years of my work, I know that I need to put in more effort to achieve my goal and become a highly effective leader.
Analysis of the Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is a recurring topic in various articles and books on management and leadership, so I was familiar with it. However, this course forced me to analyze every element of my emotional intelligence, such as self-awareness, self-control of emotions, awareness of others’ emotions, and their regulation. In this way, I have seen that my level of emotional intelligence is quite high, and I have many communication strengths that result from my work in the company. In addition, I also took an emotional intelligence test from Psychology Today that confirmed my guesses and observations (“Emotional intelligence test,” n.d.). For example, I am empathic in most cases, notice changes in others’ emotions, and am skilled at resolving conflicts that occur between employees. Most of these skills I gained while working for the company in this position through practical experience. However, I also noted that I still have some weaknesses that need to be improved to achieve higher intelligence.
Awareness of My Own Emotions
The first aspect that I analyzed was the awareness of my own emotions, and I was sure that I had mastered this skill perfectly. This emotional intelligence dimension is most important as it is fundamental to other aspects of emotion management (McShane et al., 2018). I am aware of my feelings when I am criticized, in the process of an argument or making a difficult decision, which falls under the definition of awareness of one’s own emotions. At the same time, I understand that this understanding was developed in me with growing up and the working experience. Robertson (2019) also notes that appreciating self-worth and understanding strengths, weaknesses, and limits are also parts of self-awareness. I have an understanding of my worth, as well as my strengths and weaknesses, but I cannot say with certainty my limits.
In addition, in some difficult situations, I may still not be fully aware of my emotions. For example, one day, I needed to decide for my team and recommend one employee to be fired. For a long time, I could not choose and believed that my prudence and desire to make the team’s most effective decision hindered me. However, today I understand that the fear of offending one employee drove me. Besides, I have faced personal situations in which I could not understand and express my emotions at that moment, which led to the wrong reaction; however, later on, I realized my mistake. Such situations are extremely rare, but they show that I have gaps that need to be eliminated.
Moreover, there are many tests on the Internet to check emotional intelligence, and I passed one of the most detailed in my opinion, namely the test from Psychology Today (“Emotional intelligence test,” n.d.). This test also showed that my level of self-awareness is high but not at its maximum. In addition, this test highlighted such a weakness as excessive ruminating. Thus, reflecting on this dimension of emotional intelligence showed me one of the ways to develop it.
Management of My Own Emotions
My emotion management analysis also showed that I have some small disadvantages, regardless of a high level of control. In general, I have a calm temperament and usually have no difficulties managing my emotions and suppressing impulses. For example, in challenging situations at work, when both the team and the CEO require me to act, I usually calmly listen to the requirements or problems and react only after considering them.
However, while I typically do not show my emotions during communication with the team or the CEO, I can overthink situations and keep negative feelings and thoughts. This feature sometimes affects my communication and also makes me distracted. At the same time, Robertson (2019) notes that people with high emotional intelligence can control negative thoughts and do not allow them to influence their mood. However, I can sometimes succumb to this mood and react thoughtlessly in everyday situations that do not require a high concentration level. For instance, I can refuse to give an employee some advice on an assignment and then regret the decision. Psychology Today’s test indicates the same problem, highlighting my problem in excessive rumination. Therefore, I need to learn how to control my negative thoughts and moods on communication to discourage making wrong decisions.
Awareness of Others’ Emotions
Awareness of other people’s emotions is one of the most important skills for me as I support a dynamic and sometimes challenging CEO and manage a team of assistants. It is imperative that I inspire my team and can effectively manage their emotions. As I am a high-profile person within the company, it is also important I know how to read the room as others look to me to set the tone. For this reason, I have developed skills to understand the emotions of the people around me, especially those with whom I most often interact. For example, I can tell by the expression on the CEO’s face and gestures about his reaction to an event or predict his decision. However, a significant part of my awareness is based on the experience of interacting with people.
Moreover, I am an empathic person, so usually, I understand factors that influence my team’s behavior; for example, lack of self-confidence or personal problems can cause a decrease in performance. I have developed this ability over the years in the company, and it also improved my leadership qualities and conflict management skills. However, I still notice that I have challenges in understanding new people, such as potential partners involved in negotiations or even new employees in a team. It is especially difficult for me to determine another person’s emotions in cases of dispute or conflict in which I participate since I cannot objectively assess the situation. Thus, these observations show that while I have a high level of awareness of others’ emotions, I can improve this skill.
Management of Others’ Emotions
Managing others’ emotions is the most challenging skill since the response of two people to the same stimulus can be very different. However, this skill is one of the most essential in management because an effective leader must support and motivate a team. An analysis of my regulation of others’ emotions demonstrates that this emotional intelligence dimension is the weakest for me due to lack of experience and weaknesses of other aspects.
I have some skills in managing others’ emotions, such as conflict resolving or motivating since I often face challenges from CEOs and lead a team. However, I have some weaknesses caused by limited experience and practice in this position, as well as personal qualities. For example, Robertson (2019) says that people with high emotional intelligence naturally express praise and apologies when needed. I also use positive reinforcement for the team, but it often doesn’t sound natural as I try to keep things under control. I also use apologies quite rarely, as I do not always understand how the employees reacted to my mistake and am afraid that I overthink the problem.
In addition, I find that most of the mistakes I make in managing others’ emotions happen due to their misinterpretation. The test confirms this suggestion since it shows that my strength is the right approach for conflict resolution, and my weakness is the challenges in recognizing some emotions. Overall, however, I am good at supporting and motivating the team and individual employees if I understand their difficulties. Therefore, correcting flaws in the three described dimensions and mastering motivation techniques will help me improve the ability to manage the emotions of others, which is critical to my position.
The main recommendations refer to various elements of my emotional intelligence that need to be improved. The first step is to set precise goals for each dimension. Firstly, I strive to increase awareness of my own emotions by 10%, since this indicator is at a high level for me, but I still have difficulties in some cases. Secondly, I need to improve my ability to control my emotions by 10% because, in some situations, I overthink a problem, feel distracted, or do not react appropriately and regret my actions. The level of understanding and managing other people’s emotions should be increased by 20% as these skills are necessary to improve my leadership style. These goals should be achieved within a year and measured by reflection and test on emotional intelligence. At the same time, although the most important skill is understanding my own emotions because the implementation of other goals depends on it, they need to be achieved in parallel through constant communication.
The main recommendations to increase the awareness of my feelings are to keep a diary, analyze stressors, and not avoid difficult situations. Trying to prevent challenges interferes with the acquisition of emotions and the development of the skill to recognize them, so I should not avoid difficult cases, discussion, or criticism. In addition, after such events, I need to write down all the details and analyze my feelings and the impact of stressors on them. Thus, it will be easier for me to understand my emotions or predict them depending on the stressor in the future.
The recommendation for controlling emotions include mastering techniques for managing negative thoughts, pausing before reacting or acting, and ways to regulate emotions. An important skill is the ability to think about the reactions to avoid impulsive actions, so I need to learn how to pause in emotional situations (Robertson, 2019). In addition, I need to know how to deal more effectively with feelings of guilt, fear, and anger and manage negative thoughts, since even with an adequate initial reaction, the following reflections can affect future relationships with employees. For example, in situations in which it was necessary to make a decision in favor of one side. This change helps me to avoid overthinking and the influence of mood on my communication.
The recommendation for understanding the emotions of others include developing a sense of empathy, talking with colleagues about their feelings, and mastering the methods of reading others’ facial reactions. Discussing conflicts with colleagues or situations in which they faced a problem will help me better understand the emotions of other people. This method can be challenging because not all people want to share their feelings; however, it can be effective. In addition, according to the Facial Feedback Theory, people express their emotions through facial expressions, so learning the meanings of basic mimic and gestures will help improve my emotional intelligence (Reddington, 2018). Together with an inner desire to understand people, these approaches will allow me to develop empathy and awareness of others’ emotions.
The recommendations for improving the skill of managing people’s emotions or motivating them are improving my vocabulary, practicing empathy, and knowing the characteristics of my colleagues. Stahl (2018) notes that emotionally intelligent people use a more specific language to address a problem accurately and help solve it. I already use this dictionary partly in my work with the team and CEO. For example, if an employee fails the task, I ask how I can help instead of the cause of the mistake. However, I still need to develop a professional vocabulary and find options that suit different situations. In addition, understanding my employees’ characteristics will help me find the most supportive words or actions to motivate them. However, the main recommendation for this dimension and emotional intelligence, in general, is constant communication and practice of skills.
Thus, this course gave me useful and necessary knowledge about emotional intelligence, which I can apply in my practice. Moreover, the course helped me reflect on my emotional intelligence growth, the factors that contributed to it and set new objectives. At this point, I understand my strengths and weaknesses and how to improve them to achieve my goal of being a more effective leader. Although my emotional intelligence is higher than average today, practice and training will improve my communication skills. For this purpose, I need to follow the recommendation to strengthen my skills in every dimension of emotional intelligence and evaluate my progress. Thus, understanding my strengths and weaknesses, as well as practice, will allow me to become an effective leader for my team and improve the quality of services for patients.
Emotional intelligence test. (n.d.). 2020, Web.
McShane, S.L., Steen, L., & Tasa, K. (2018). Canadian organizational behaviorother’s (vol.10). MacGraw-Hill Education.
Reddington, S. (2018). How to improve emotional intelligence. JNR via PublishDrive.
Robertson, E. (2019). Master your emotions: Develop emotional intelligence and discover the essential rules of when and how to control your feelings. C-S Publication via PublishDrive.
Stahl, A. (2018). 5 ways to develop your emotional intelligence. Forbes. Web.