Have you ever experienced that simply just knowing every bit of your job is not enough to excel at your workplace? What else might be needed beside deep knowledge and high intelligence to experience that rewarding state of mind that described as Flow? Have you ever met people who you admired for their expertise but were running away from the opportunity to work with them?
The answer to the questions stated above is hidden in two little letters: EQ (EI), namely – Emotional Intelligence. It’s interesting to see how emotional intelligence becomes more and more important in our socially alienated world, especially at workplaces. Why is that so? The concept of emotional intelligence gives us the answer to that.
Emotional intelligence is the ability to perceive emotions, to access and generate emotions so as to assist thought, to understand emotions and emotional knowledge, and to reflectively regulate emotions so as to promote emotional and intellectual growth. (Mayer & Salovey)
Some might confuse emotional intelligence with being emotional, nice all the time and have touchy-feely relationships with the colleagues (they picture a female co-worker who cries all the time, likes being hugged and prefers gossiping) and might not be able to imagine that the manager who they admire not just for the knowledge and experience he/she has, but also for being honest, showing empathy and being able to control his/her emotions is actually possesses high EQ.
Having high emotional intelligence is actually being professional: a professional’s confidence is coming from self-awareness and continuing development. A professional practices self-control and self-discipline, he/she is highly competent and autonomous but also connected to the best practices and standards of the field. For a Pro always the client comes first, delivers his tasks on time and on budget. At the level of relationship management he is not just a practitioner but also a leader and influencer regardless his position at an organization.
Taking into consideration all of the above said, how flow comes into the picture? As per Daniel Goleman:
Being able to enter flow is emotional intelligence at its best; flow represents perhaps the ultimate in harnessing the emotions in the service of performance and learning. In flow the emotions are not just contained and channeled, but positive, energized, and aligned with the task at hand.
Emotional Intelligence is also one of the 29 leadership skills measured in FLIGBY. How is it done so? Let’s take for example Alex, the Chief Winemaker in the game: he knows everything about quality wine making, he is dedicated and his loyalty to the company is unquestionable. But may he be allowed to treat his colleagues with disrespect, be moody and disconnected from the team? He might be missing something out on his interpersonal skills.