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Emotional Intelligence & Social Style

by Strategic Learning's Alliance Partner the TRACOM Group and John Myers

EQ and Social StylesEmotional Intelligence (EQ) is a concept focused on how effectively people work with others.  EQ skills are unique from a person’s technical skills and cognitive abilities.  Multiple studies have shown that EQ competencies often account for the difference between star performers and average performers, particularly in positions of leadership.

A 2009 study conducted by Colorado State University compared the TRACOM SOCIAL STYLE and Versatility Model with multiple well-known instruments for measuring Emotional Intelligence.  The study found that Versatility was in fact closely related to EQ.

Daniel Goleman, a leading researcher and author on EQ, identifies the four components of Emotional Intelligence as:

  • Self Awareness:  Having a clear understanding of one’s emotions, strengths, weaknesses, drives and capabilities.  On the surface there’s really nothing new about this concept, but it’s a critical skill and it’s overlooked by many people.
  • Self Management:  Is what frees us from being prisoners to our emotions.  Without understanding what we’re feeling, we can’t control our feelings and this leaves us at the mercy of our emotions.
  • Social Awareness:  Is mostly about empathy.  It’s the ability to read another person’s facial expressions, voice and other non-verbal signals in order to understand that person’s emotions.
  • Relationship Management:  Is where these three previous skills all come together.  This is the most visible aspect of a person, and in particular leaders.  This is where you see skills like conflict management, team building, and influencing others.

One criticism of Emotional Intelligence is that it sounds good in theory but it is difficult to put into practice.

What do you think?  In your experience, which of the four components of EQ do you find the most challenging?

2 comments to Emotional Intelligence & Social Style

  • I thought it was Travis Bradberry that talks about the 4 components of emotional intelligence in his book Emotional Intelligence 2.0.

  • The four elements are Goleman’s. TalentSmart uses the Goleman model but developed their own assessment and training materials.

    Even before Goleman, psychologists like Albert Ellis with “Rational Emotive Therapy” and Carl Rogers with his “Rogerian” emphasis on empathy and the affective dimension of communication investigated and practiced methods for helping people develop what is now popularly referred to as Emotional Intelligence.

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