Role of Emotional Intelligence in Entrepreneurial Journey

Emotional intelligence, in a nutshell, is the skill of detecting and understanding emotions in others as well as oneself. Emotional intelligent people are generally good at managing their own emotions and helping others manage theirs.

Emotionally intelligent people are good at putting themselves in someone else’s shoes and seeing challenges from different perspectives, which can also help them solve problems for their team and clients. Entrepreneurship requires to of maturity in understanding things from others perspective and most of times it is proved that Emotional Intelligence plays a key role to success as an entrepreneur.

Entrepreneurs need to be self-driven and motivated individuals. Business is about relationships, and Emotional Intelligence is the number one skill needed for you to connect with your team and customers – and drive business success.

For an entrepreneur, mastering EQ skill can be the difference between success and failure. Those entrepreneurs who neglect to develop emotional intelligence tend to get stressed easily make more mistakes, and make reactive decisions leading to business damage.

Emotionally intelligent people are empathetic, such quality typically make them excellent, respected communicators. Although traditional work place follow emotional intelligence on priority, it can be extremely helpful—and even crucial—for entrepreneurial journey too.  Various skills that makes a person to have high emotionally intelligent and are essential for an Entrepreneur are:

1. Improved self-awareness

Understanding where we do stand emotionally can be very helpful as an entrepreneur. Being able to identify and healthfully express your own emotions is a strength. The ability to understand your own emotions and how they affect the people around can help you make better decisions.

2. More effective communication

Any Idea how well do we communicate with others? Studies suggest that our daily communication breakdown is as follows:

  • 9 percent writing
  • 16 percent reading
  • 30 percent speaking
  • 45 percent listening

Unfortunately, a lot of people struggle with active listening because they are either talking over someone or are too consumed with what’s going on in their own head to pay attention to what the other person is saying. As Peter Drucker says, “The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.”Successful entrepreneurs who possess strong emotional intelligence value the importance of listening. They realize that, by allowing others to feel heard, it creates trust with people. Furthermore, it allows them to learn more about their audience.  

 It’s difficult to have a deep conversation with someone if you don’t empathize with them. If you can’t identify with the emotions of others, communication is more difficult and less effective overall. Entrepreneurs with high emotional intelligence can leverage empathy, problem-solving, and social skills to come up with solutions, create strong relationships, and ultimately, win people over

3. Being Empathetic towards others 

Empathy is looking and understanding the concerns from others perspective. This quality will help in building trust among clients and that in turn creates strong relationships with people because they have a genuine interest and concern for their well-being. As a result, they are master influencers. People want to follow their work because they trust who they are as a person and what they stand for.

4. Better control over emotions

The journey of an Entrepreneur is not at all a walk in the park. One has to face many, roadblocks on the path to success, and entrepreneurs will have to deal with everything that comes on the way.  Being able to control   emotions is key when communicating with investors and other important stakeholders.  

5. Open to Life Long Learning

Always seek constructive feedback from colleagues, mentors, coaches, peers, and team members for the self-improvement. Weaknesses are only seen as opportunities to grow and become more. Open to new and lifelong learning with a growth mind set will make the entrepreneurial journey smooth and safe.

In the words of Daniel Goleman himself, “If your emotional abilities aren’t in hand, if you don’t have self-awareness, if you are not able to manage your distressing emotions, if you can’t have empathy and have effective relationships, then no matter how smart you are, you are not going to get very far.”

The only way to develop emotional intelligence is by practicing it in actionJust like any skill that you want to master, it will require that you invest time, energy, hard work, and effort into it.     

Higher emotional intelligence is a greater indicator of strong performance (whether that be in the workplace, in testing situations, and so on) than high IQ.

In terms of entrepreneurship, having high emotional intelligence is extremely beneficial. With high emotional intelligence comes a better understanding of the other’s needs, feelings, and overall situation. As such, an entrepreneur with high emotional intelligence can better create a product or service to fit the needs of their target customer. Similarly, entrepreneurs with high emotional intelligence can better work with and understand their co-workers and clients, and cultivate better relationships with them as a result of their heightened sensitivity to the emotional states of those around them. Finally, emotionally intelligent entrepreneurs uses their understanding of the needs of others to be a better leader. When it comes to being a leader, they rely on empathy and understanding, not an iron fist.

Dr.Kiran Kumari Patil
Director REVA NEST TBI
REVA University Bangalore

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