By now, most architectural firms know that emotional intelligence is important for successful leadership because it allows leaders to better empathize with their team, control their emotions, make smarter decisions, and reduce conflict in the workplace. Many leaders, however, do not realize that there are simple steps to improve their emotional intelligence. The following tips can help you focus your energies and improve your emotional intelligence.
Make Self-Reflection a Habit
Emotional intelligence is all about being aware of your feelings and understanding how your emotions affect the people around you. You should make a habit of reflecting on your state of mind throughout day. The more aware you become of your feelings, the easier they will be to manage. When you can control your emotions, you will be more patient, more empathetic, and less stressed.
Seek Feedback from Others
Although self-reflection is critical, everybody has biases that can color their self-perceptions. For this reason, it is important to seek out feedback from others you trust to give you honest opinions. You can then start to get a sense of the difference in how you see yourself and how other people see you, which will give you a much better understanding of what you need to work on to improve your emotional intelligence skills.
Practice Active Listening
Active listening helps you better understand the people around you, and it also helps to improve the connection you have to others. In conversations, most people focus on what they are going to say next that they don’t completely listen to the other participants of the conversation. One way to improve emotional intelligence is to actively work on hearing each word others say when they talk to you.
Identify Weaknesses and Set Actionable Goals
Once you have a solid understanding of your emotional strengths and weaknesses, you can set goals and make a plan to address your weaknesses. Set goals that you can do each and every day to improve your emotional intelligence. For example, if you determine you need work staying more present during conversations, one goal could be to start meditating twice a day. The important part is to make sure goals are realistic and relevant.
Improving your emotional intelligence will make you a better leader, help to build more meaningful relationships between you and your employees, and improve the dynamics of your whole team. This requires you to become more aware of your emotions so you can better manage them.
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