We’ve all experienced times when our emotions get the best of us, running a business is no exception to this. The thing is that behind everything business is a real person (or people), so naturally when things happen they affect us personally on some level. As a human being, there isn’t much of a way around this, but there are ways to handle our emotions when it comes to our business that won’t having us reaping the consequences of irrational actions.
According to Psychology Today, Emotional Intelligence is:
The ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others. It is generally said to include 3 skills:
1. Emotional awareness, including the ability to identify your own emotions and those of others;
2. The ability to harness emotions and apply them to tasks like thinking and problems solving;
3. The ability to manage emotions, including the ability to regulate your own emotions, and the ability to cheer up or calm down another person.
One of the main pieces of advice that my husband gave me and that he lives by is not making emotional decisions about things in life. Many times, emotion decisions are rash, not well thought out, and tend to get us in trouble, because of the poor judgement calls that come along with them. It took me a while to really understand what he meant, and honestly I had to learn the hard way that making emotionally based decisions was plain out a bad idea.
You can imagine how bad emotionally based decisions can turn out from a personal standpoint, but they can be even more detrimental when it comes to business. Operating a business should be approached with logical and strategic mindset, not an emotional one. I’m sharing some tips with you on how to be emotionally intelligent in business; making sound judgement decisions and maintaining your professionalism during times where things may come up that may entice us to act emotionally instead of logically.
While our businesses provide solutions to problems for our target market, our brand stands behind it as a way to connect with them. Our brand is what really gets people interested in our products or services, building trust and in turn garnering support, promotion, and sales. People need to know and trust that the brand they’ve chosen to spend their time, money, and energy on is making good, well-thought, and smart decisions. They need to know that the people in charge are not just flashes in the pan making rash decisions due to fluctuations in the market or competitor actions.
When we’re emotionally intelligent in our business, we maintain consistency. A brand without consistency isn’t a brand, and is a failure waiting to happen. An emotional decision made in business can effect consistency hugely, because it can cause a business owner to jump the gun and implement practices that are not in alignment with the brand. When you’re consistent, every decision you make is in alignment with your brand and the purpose of it. Emotions added into the mix, like with most things, can skew our views and cause us to not look at things objectively, a must in running a successful business.
Emotional Intelligence In Your Business
When we are humble, we’re not boastful about things and we keep the focus off ourselves on our customers. Our clients and customers don’t want to get the feeling that we think we’re better than them, that we’ve somehow arrived and yet they haven’t. We have to keep in mind that one of the most important parts of relationship building is trust and being seen as relatable. If our clients feel they can’t relate to use, they are more likely to seek other solutions to their problems, even if you have it readily available.
Think Before You Speak
Words carry a lot of weight, many times more than actions. You can take back words, no matter how many times you apologize. Thinking before you speak not only keeps you from hurting others feelings, but allows you to take the time to step back and think about if what you want to say is really necessary.
Set Personal Feelings Aside
The old phrase, ‘It’s business, not personal’ isn’t just a common colloquialism, but one that is so relevant in business. A lot of the time we get caught in our feelings when we can’t take constructive feedback or criticism, but an emotionally intelligent business owner doesn’t.
The feedback and constructive criticism that we receive from our clients and customers help us to improve our products and services. Without it, we would not know how to best serve them and produce something that sets up aside from our competition and keeps our target market loyal to us.
Take Time to Make Decisions
A good business owner is one that makes well-thought, researched decisions. One of the biggest mistakes that business owners make, is making decisions too fast. The situation: You come up with an idea and it sounds absolutely awesome. You think this would be great for my business, I’m going to implement it ASAP.
The issue: You haven’t taken enough time to think about how it will impact your business from both positive and negative standpoints. Although something may affect your business positivity in theory, you have to know if and how it really will benefit it. Does it align with what your brand stands for? How will it best serve your client/customer? – Will they find it useful? Will they appreciate it? Will they understand it? These are just a few of the things you must consider when making decisions in your business, and that is why it is all the more important to take your time in making them.
Get a Second Opinion
Two heads are better than one. We’ve all been told that at some point and its the true, no matter how you shake it. Just because your the sole decision maker in your business, doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with you running ideas past someone. In actuality, its shows that you have confidence and assurance in your brand, being able to ask for and consider someone’s input.
If you’re too emotionally attached to your business to the point where you feel no one else can offer anything useful to it, you’re making a mistake. It is a strength to seek knowledge and by getting a second opinion, that is exactly what you’re doing.
As business owners, we have to constantly be paying attention to the environment around us. We mustn’t get too caught in our own goals and achievements that we only focus on ourselves. We need to know what’s going on with our team (if we have one) and especially what’s going on with our customers. This includes knowing and caring about what motivates them and being able to emphasize with that.
Additionally, paying attention to things like body language and tone of voice are important, because it allows us to better communicate with them, further building a relationship. The key to success is being able to connect, knowing human nature, and being able to solve a problem. If we’re not paying attention, it makes it very for us to do a good job serving those we seek to do so with our brands.
Emotional intelligence isn’t complicated, it’s simple, like I said above its human nature. Being smart and objective are at the basis of being emotionally intelligent, however being tactful and compassionate are major parts of it as well. When we keep our emotions in check, it means that we can better respond to the emotions of those we serve. Our business exist to serve, so if we’re not putting our best foot forward in doing so, we’re not doing our jobs.
I believe the goal of most business owners is to do our jobs to the best of our abilities and build a strong, trusting, and legitimate brand. Emotional intelligence plays such a huge role in this, because in being emotionally intelligent, we’re always considering putting the needs of others first. Emotional intelligence in our businesses results in us being smarter, better, and more successful business owners who make good decisions and lead well.