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Your Leadership Style Reveals Your Emotional Intelligence

boss, leader, advice

According to Grow America, a majority of people are currently unhappy in their corporate jobs. Harris Interactive indicates a full 74% of people would consider finding a new job today, and Mercer’s “What’s Working” study says 32% are actively looking. The reasons for their unhappiness? A recent study by Accenture indicates the following:

31% Don’t like their boss
31% Lack empowerment
35% Internal politics
43% Lack of recognition

What do these four things have in common? They can all be tied back to poor leadership, specifically the leader’s emotional intelligence – how in touch a leader is with their professional emotions and those of the people they lead.

If you’re a manager, how others respond to your leadership is a reflection of your ability to lead. Sure, some employees are just bad fits. But regardless of whether or not you make the right hire, it’s on you as the manager/leader to develop things for the better and recognize the emotions of the people you lead.

The unfortunate reality more many is that their leadership style comes from an authority in their home or past work experience – and that style was misguided.

Unfortunately, these leadership styles are not emotionally intelligent. Here are some examples:

  1. The entitled leader. Some feel that taking on a leadership role means you get to do or say whatever you want to others without accountability. These leaders are very limited in their ability to foster an engaged workforce. They think others respect them because they have too.
  2. The hyper leader. These are the leaders who believe everything has to be done exactly how they would do it. They tend to need their fingerprint on every project, task or role. They would never admit that they are a micro manager, and they have no idea that they are killing trust with their staff, group or organization.
  3. The passive leader. This leader appears warm and approachable, however when the going gets tough, they bail or are nowhere to be found. They won’t step up for their team, and often leave them to their own devices.
  4. The consensus leader. This leader wants everyone to agree so badly that no one is empowered to do anything unless the group is behind it. What’s the outcome? No one is happy! True innovation or taking initiative are not rewarded.

So, now that we’ve identified misguided leadership types, what skills does an emotionally intelligent leader possess? Here are three:

  1. They can identify their own emotions and those of others, focusing on
    understanding rather than judgment.
  2. They don’t allow their emotions to hijack their ability to reason.
  3. They manage their own emotions, with the ability to cheer up or calm down another person.

If you’re a leader, which do you identify more with – one of the four misguided types or the emotionally intelligent leader?

An effective leadership style will produce trust, respect, empathy and freedom to express one’s self without judgement. And that’s healthy for any workplace.