Emotional intelligence (EI) is being able to appropriately approach and address an individual and/or their situation, with the knowledge and understanding of your own feelings, how it will affect the person, as well as, understanding that individuals’ emotion and how it impacts you.
EI in the workplace
Emotional intelligence in the workplace is important, so that employees can: break down culture barriers; be cognizant of how their behaviors and verbal responses can be perceived by co-workers and customers; and regulate their emotions to the point that it is a boost to productivity rather than a hindrance. Much of the culture barrier in the workplace is attributed to a lack of understanding of how an individual communicates and operates (Neck, Houghton, & Murray, 2017). EI will help employees to behave and respond tactfully, when special dates such as 9/11 or 1/27 (international commemoration day of Holocaust victims) (United Nations, 2011) occur. Promotions or advertisements conducted on sensitive dates, may not be perceived well, as it could appear that the event is not being taken seriously or that a company is trying to make money off a tragedy. An example, of this would be H &M choosing to advertise a young African American in a sweatshirt that said coolest monkey in the jungle, knowing that the term monkey was used to humiliate and belittle a black person’s position in society, then and currently; many people were offended, hurt, and outraged, which equated to the loss of sales, celebrity endorsement and respect (Spellings, 2018).
Poor decisions like the one above dilutes the quality of customer service. Customer service is not just about how you serve someone but it’s about presentation and reputation too. Emotional intelligence helps workers to put their best foot forward at all times and it is one of the major tools that can be utilized to have a healthy and productive interaction with others, even with difficult individuals.
Neck, C., Houghton, D., and Murray, E. (2017). Organizational Behavior: A Critical Thinking Approach. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.
Spellings, J. (2018). Mother of Child Modeling ‘Offensive’ H & M Shirt: Get Over It .Retrieved from https://www.thecut.com/2018/01/mother-of-child-modeling-monkey-h-and-m-shirt-get-over-it.html
United Nations. (2011). About the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme. Retrieved from http://www.un.org/en/holocaustremembrance/