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I went on a course on emotional intelligence … so interested in this piece that came up in this weeks Times Higher Education:

It is about recognising your own emotional reactions to what happens under your leadership. For instance, one female head of department told me that she always checked her mood and emotional state before leaving the car park every time she arrived at work. If she didn’t, she feared that she could “begin the day screaming at a colleague because I have had a late night or agreeing to something ridiculous because I had just enjoyed giving a lecture”.

But you do also need to be able to manage the emotions of others. So when a colleague is faced with a personal tragedy or competence issue, the emotionally and socially intelligent leader will ensure that the person is supported to make their work realistic until their crisis is resolved. This may seem like common sense, but tell that to the senior manager who once told me: “I make the rules here and I think he should be taking on a full workload – even if his mother is dying.” That manager was gradually undermined because the staff saw that none of them would be supported if they themselves were to suffer a temporary personal setback.

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