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How emotional intelligence can save your employee retention rate [Infographic]

How emotional intelligence can save your employee retention rate [Infographic] Blog Feature

Carolyn Edgecomb

Talent & Office Manager, 7+ Years of Logistics and New Hire Management

February 22nd, 2020 min read

Hiring managers and department heads spend hours sifting through resumes and interviewing candidates. 

They’re on a constant mission to find the best person, which is no small feat. 

Finding and hiring the right people for the right roles is crucial to any organization's success, and unfortunately, it’s not something that happens overnight. 

Even once people are hired and onboarded, keeping them happy and challenged is another issue altogether.

According to a recent report, managers can use emotional intelligence (EQ) to dramatically improve employee retention.

Emotional intelligence can help management develop stronger working relationships, create an environment where employees feel truly valued and appreciated, and better predict job performance.

In fact, Talent Smart conducted a survey of over 34 important workplace skills and found that emotional intelligence is the strongest predictor of performance.

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, emotional intelligence is the ability to recognize and manage your own emotions while also being able to understand and be mindful of the emotional state of those around you.

Individuals with high EQ remain calm under pressure, lead by example, resolve conflict effectively, are empathetic to colleagues, and persist through sticky situations. 

Emotional intelligence = self and social awareness

Self awareness

When someone is self-aware, they are mindful of their emotions and especially careful with how they express them in various situations. 

This is especially important for company leaders and management

Self-awareness isn’t about not showing or feeling emotion, but rather knowing how to react in certain situations.

An emotionally intelligent leader is able to identify when they’re angry or frustrated and understanding it may be inappropriate to outwardly display those emotions.

Rather, they might consciously take a moment to take a deep breath and remain calm. 

As leaders, being in tune with your emotions not only allows you to communicate better with employees and members of your team, but you’re also able to avoid workplace conflicts. Rather than escalating a problem, you are working to solve it. 

According to Initiative One, here are some ways you can improve your emotional intelligence:

  • Have a positive attitude
  • Effectively manage your stress
  • Be conscious of non-verbal emotions and reactions
  • Resolve conflicts constructively
  • Actively listening

Those strategies may seem simple in theory, but they’re difficult to implement and require various strategies and routine practice.

Social awareness

While social awareness encompasses being sensitive to other people’s emotions, allowing you to be honest and respectful of how they’re feeling, self-awareness is focused on being in tune with your emotions. 

A great example of social awareness might come when announcing a change in your company structure, which may cause your employees to respond negatively due to stress or a feared loss of competence.

If you’re able to anticipate the reaction, you’re able to address concerns before they even become concerns. 

Another benefit of having higher social awareness is being able to get a group of individuals to work together by understanding what motivates people and their emotional responses.

Socially aware people know what to do or say to help the overall team reach its goal.

If you’re looking to improve your social awareness, Entrepreneur suggests you simply observe those around you to identify situations or circumstances that could trigger an emotional response.

If you can observe what triggers an emotional response and what that response looks like, you can better adjust your actions accordingly.

How emotional intelligence can affect your company’s retention rate

A study conducted by Harvard Business Review uncovered a primary cause for employee turnover: There’s a massive gap between how leaders perceive themselves and how they’re perceived by employees. 

In most cases, employees are leaving their manager, not the company.

Harvard Business Review also found that 35% of employees would forgo a pay raise to see their leader fired.

That’s where emotional intelligence comes into play.

Having managers that are mindful and socially aware can create a positive and healthy work environment that encourages employees to do their best and reach their goals.

Initiative One found that workers are 400% less likely to leave a job if they have a high EQ manager.

To learn more about emotional intelligence and the role it plays in your company’s leaders, check out the infographic below.

leadership-eq-can-improve-employee-retention-rate

 

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