Key Emotional Intelligence Skills a must for every Leader

Unlike common understanding, a leader is not the person who is just best at their job. Even if a person brings out results like no other, this still does not guarantee them being a leader.

A leader is someone who leads by example. Being a leader means being aware of everyone who looks up to you, everything that happens under your supervision and the effect your response has on people.

More than IQ and technical skills, a leader should have emotional intelligence. A leader should be able to know, understand and respond to emotions along with having the skills to get the job done perfectly. They should know how their words affect others and react accordingly.

Demonstrating Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace

When a leader brings together a team, apart from technical skills, the team should be committed and loyal to each other. This can only be achieved with a team leader who has emotional intelligence. Cases of retention is seen mostly because of communication issues and problems in getting along with a team. This can often be because the team leader makes the people in the team feel like they do not belong or when they are not treated according to their character.

It is important for a team leader to understand each member under him/her and not make them feel like they are talking to a boss but a person who they should look up to or their go-to person.

The minute a leader let their emotions take control over a situation, half the team will be let down. It is not that a leader should not be emotionless at all. It is that the emotions that they do show should be in control and carefully executed.

Read these seven features to understand where you stand in your emotional intelligence:


If a leader must understand the people in his/her team and react accordingly, he/she must first understand their own emotions. You need the ability to be aware of your own emotions, strengths and weaknesses. Only when you are fully aware of your way of reacting to things can you overcome it and react to certain things in such a way that you aren’t doing that because of how you personally perceive it but because that is how it objectively should be reacted to.

How to Improve Your Self Awareness

Keeping a Journal

Although this is something you have been hearing since your childhood from both your parents and teachers, you probably did not bother to actually practice it. However, there is a reason why they have been telling you to do it. When you write down personal things, no matter how irrelevant, you start questioning your behavior. You look at yourself from a third person’s point of view and this helps you improve your self-awareness. This also acts as an archive to everything you have done right and wrong. A glance at your life occasionally will help you relive the success stories and help you overcome the times you failed.

Ask for Input

Nobody likes being told what to do or even given a feedback on one’s behavior. However, the minute you become open to criticism, the world will change around you. When you let yourself be open enough to receive feedback about your strengths and weakness, you are also allowing yourself to improve. It is always important to understand that not everyone is going to be honest with you. People can mostly end up being wrong about you but even then, it is worth knowing how your actions are being perceived by others.

Slow Down

The whole count-twice-before-you-say-something is one of the best ways you can improve yourself. Slow down and reflect on the ways you behave during the day. This will go a long way into helping yourself grow.


Self-management is nothing but discipling your way of life. This is something that comes out of you. There is a limit to an external force telling you what to do and how to discipline yourself. However, an actual change will only come if you want to change. Your emotions, especially when you are a leader, can be highly contagious. Because of this very reason everything you say should be said calmly irrespective of the tense situation. This will not only help you calm yourself despite the situation, but it will also help your teammates to feel calm and get a better outcome that before.

How to Improve Your Discipline

Know Your Weaknesses

Before you jump at an opportunity and tell someone that no human is perfect, keep in mind that that includes you too. The minute you realize that there is scope for improvement in your way of behavior, you have taken your first step towards self-discipline. After self-realization, all you must do is pay close attention to people around you and yourself to see what exactly you can change in the way you behave.

Change Your Perception on Willpower

From the time you put a limit on your willpower, then there is no way you can reach your goal. However, when you do not limit yourself and let yourself see how much you can push up to, you will soon realize that even the sky is not the limit.


One of the instinctive reaction most people have to all situation is sympathy. However, it is high time it is changed to empathy. Empathy is placing yourself in the shoes of others. This helps you better understand the situation they are in and react accordingly. Most miscommunications and conflicts happen because of the lack of empathy. Identify the problems your teammates are going through, place yourself in their shoes and help them get over it their way and not yours.

How to Improve Your Empathy

Ask More Questions

Just understanding the situation on a surface level and trying to empathize will not work as what you are trying to do will be taking that situation and customizing it according to your life. Instead, ask multiple questions till you understand their situation from the grass root level.

Challenge Yourself

Staying in your comfort zone will never let you see growth. As much comfortable as it is, it is that important to get out of it to understand the lives of other people.

Relationship Management

Managing relationships becomes very difficult during adult life because everyone around you has engrossed themselves in work and then in their close personal life. Almost nobody seems to have time for anything else in their life. When such a lifestyle is being followed by people it becomes extra hard to maintain a relationship. Hence, communicating effectively and keeping in touch every now and then becomes crucial.

Effective communication

Merely saying a lot of fancy words or being able to talk non-stop for hours does not ensure successful communication. An effective communication is more about the combination of spoken words along with body language, gestures and tone of voice. The most intense conflicts usually start from a miscommunication. The need for proper communication in a work place becomes vital not just for information to be passed on effectively but also for the company to be run smoothly.

How to Improve Your Communication Skills


The biggest quality one requires in achieving communicating skills is to have good listening skills. Most of the time, communication is about a conversation. Conversations work only if both the parties listen to each other and react accordingly. We cannot stress it enough when we talk about listening before speaking. Listening does not just mean hearing, it is also analyzing body language.

Get Networking

Sign yourself up to some industry networking events as it is an amazing place to thrive in communication. The natural ebb and flow of networking is a good balance of self and other making for good communicative sparring.


Do you remember when you were in school/college you would sit in that one class you genuinely loved, and the bell would ring in no time when all other classes seemed to take eternity? This is solely because when you are immersed in something you like, you do not feel like a lot of time has passed. This is the exact state of mind you need in the work you do too. After all, your job should not be merely about making money, it should also be about you doing something you genuinely like doing. When you are in that state of mind, your productivity will also be maximum.

Don’t Forget About Your Values

Just because you have achieved emotional intelligence does not mean that you can now be a good person and understand everyone for good. The skill of understanding what others feel can easily be used for an advantage. This is where your morality comes into play. You have a duty to understand other people’s emotions and use if for their good and not yours. Once you know how someone feels, that very information can be used to manipulate their decisions and whatnot. We have seen examples of that happening wildly online through instances like Cambridge Analytica. Hence, always remember that you are empathizing with someone only to make things better for them and not to use that information in any way for an advantage.