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The Importance Of Emotional Intelligence In Project Management

Why EQ matters

5Jun

There are many different components that come together to determine the success of a project, and one of these is emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is when you are able to demonstrate emotions, empathize with others, and make decisions using multi-level awareness. In this post, we take a look at emotional intelligence in regards to project success in further detail.

There are five core categories that are used to measure emotional intelligence – social skills, motivation, empathy, self-regulation, and self-awareness. If a team and, most importantly, a project manager, display a high level of emotional intelligence; they will be more likely to succeed. As a project manager, you must be in tune with your team’s emotions, you must know how to communicate with a wide range of people, you must be aware of your behavior, and you need to motivate the team to success.

There have been some interesting statistics about emotional intelligence and project management that were founded by OfficeTeam, which is a staffing agency. They revealed that four in ten HR managers believe that soft skills, including adaptability, problem-solving, and communication, are more challenging to teach people than technical abilities. It was also revealed that 43% of HR managers identified increased morale and motivation as the main benefit associated with having staff that are emotionally intelligent.

In addition to this, three in ten employers felt that there was not enough emphasis put on emotional qualifications during the hiring process. Interestingly, while 92% of employees thought they did have strong emotional qualifications, fewer (74%) believed that their bosses do. This highlights the need for project managers to focus on developing this part of their arsenal. In fact, such soft skills are often addressed during project management training, and so a refresher course wouldn’t hurt.

A final statistic worth highlighting is that 21% of employees believe that emotional intelligence is much more valuable than measure of intellect (IQ), and almost 65% believe that the two were just as important as the other. This is significant when you consider the fact that we often focus on IQ instead of EQ.

All in all, it is quite clear to see how important emotional intelligence is in project management – for the entire team. However, this all begins with the project manager. If the project manager does not have a high level of emotional intellect, it is going to be difficult for the project to succeed and you may find that frustrations amongst the team arise.

Project management courses that focus on these soft skills are recommended because emotional intelligence will help project managers in a number of different ways. This includes being able to deliver results, provide leadership, manage change, build effective teams, and operate in complex matrix environments. After all, project managers need to collaborate, influence, and negotiate with other teams and departments to understand project dependencies and gather resources.

Emotional intelligence will give you the tools to succeed on any project. Don’t overlook the importance of it. 

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