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Blog #5: Emotional Intelligence


Now more than ever we need effective leaders. Leaders who have a solid understanding of their emotions and actions and how they affect the people around them. Leaders who know how to relate to, and work with, others. We need leaders who have empathy and social skills. And, we need leaders who are self-aware, know how to self-regulate, and who motivate others.

These leadership skills and abilities are referred to as “Emotional Intelligence” (EI) qualities.

EI has been a leadership subject matter since 1995, but it was Daniel Goleman, an American psychologist who helped to popularize this critical leadership quality. During his research he determined that possessing EI was necessary to becoming a successful leader.

A leader with a high EI creates an atmosphere of thoughtful-mindedness and empowerment for those who believe in, and follow them.  This is true whether it’s an entire country, thousands of employees, team members, friends, or family.

Emotional intelligence covers many vital skills that are necessary for businesses and teams to function, such as communication, conflict resolution, collaboration, critical thinking, pursuing excellence and more. 

When discussing the leadership qualities and attributes that our New Jersey Business Hall of Fame Laureate Legacies embody, EI came up as a commonality in all the candidates. As business leaders they were/are responsible for overseeing employees, helping them develop their skills and maximize their performance. So, it goes without saying that their emotions had to play a crucial role in their leadership.

Just consider the definition of Emotional Intelligence! It is “Having the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one's emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.”

Bravo to our Laureate Legacies for having embraced this leadership quality and to all those who pursue it. As adults, we need to collectively be accountable for future generations of leaders. We can do this by serving as their role models, mentors and teachers, ensuring that they will become the best versions of themselves.

With the world we live in today, we encourage everyone, especially our students, to find their own inner EI and seek ways to further develop it!

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