If you’re a young professional, you’ve no doubt heard the phrase “Emotional Intelligence” a time or two… but what exactly is EQ? According to one of the two psychology professors who coined the phrase, John D. Mayer of UNH, “emotional intelligence is the ability to accurately perceive your own and others’ emotions; to understand the signals that emotions send about relationships; and to manage your own and others’ emotions.”
Simple enough… but very “scientific”. Let’s dive deeper. How does this affect YOU?
In 1998, Rutgers psychologist Daniel Goleman established the importance of emotional intelligence to business leadership. “The most effective leaders are all alike in one crucial way: they all have a high degree of what has come to be known as emotional intelligence. It’s not that IQ and technical skills are irrelevant. They do matter, but…they are the entry-level requirements for executive positions.”*
With a soft skill like this being so important to your success as a leader, would it not make sense to discover your level and how to best utilize (or adjust!) it?? Well you’re in luck! We’ve nailed down the incredible Aaron Peterson, seasoned lecturer, trainer and organizational developer for the City of Tempe. At our August GET to Learn, he’ll guide us though an interactive exercise examining how personal Emotional Intelligence level affects your life.
We asked Aaron a few questions to whet your palate for what’s to come…
GET Phoenix: Can you tell a little bit about who you are and what you do?
Aaron: I have almost 25 30 years of experience in the insurance, financial services, and government sectors. I have discovered that who I am, and what I do best, is help people work on the most difficult part of their jobs, the soft skills that can help us or hurt us depending on how well we manage ourselves. With a degree in psychology and an MBA, I can clearly see both the business case and the personal benefits in developing these skills.
G: What exactly does emotional intelligence mean to you?
A: Emotional Intelligence is fundamentally using emotions to make our lives easier. We have tried over many decades to convince ourselves that we are rational, in-control human beings. However, our emotions are always there, and make a huge impact on the decisions we make. If that were not the case, we would never be in debt, over indulge, or make any of the other very human decisions we make all the time. As a definition, I would say: Emotional Intelligence is the ability to accurately read and use our emotions to make better decisions.
G: EQ is a buzz term right now. What will we hear in your presentation that stands out from others?
A: Knowing what we should do is easy: eat right, exercise, get plenty of sleep, finish college, control the inner voice. Knowing how to do it, and/or overcoming the internal road blocks is the difficult part that is rarely found in a book or article. I will share specific steps that we can all use to start benefiting from knowing more about our Emotional Intelligence.
G: You use a 4-quadrant matrix to evaluate Emotional Intelligence levels. What is its purpose?
A: It is important that we work on our Emotional Intelligence in the right order. I have rearranged the matrix so that we focus on the right things first, then we build on that early work for the other quadrants. If we don’t do that, we make mistakes thinking we are reading emotions accurately when we aren’t.
G: Why else should people attend this event?
A: Emotional Intelligence applies to all of us, whether we understand it or not. Success in our personal and professional lives very much depends on our ability to accurately read our emotions, then respond to them appropriately. Those of us that don’t do this have a steeper mountain to climb in life.
You won’t want to miss this intriguing interactive talk on August 30th at the NEW Scott Resort (formerly FireSky). Not only will you be learning how to implement this key leadership skill but there will be opportunities to network and enjoy complimentary refreshments.
We will also be raffling off a 1-night stay at The Scott Resort & Spa, courtesy of our generous host!
Be sure to pre-register today!