How to use emotional intelligence to facilitate workplace conversations

by Sara Fletcher

Have you ever had an awkward conversation? Did dialogue between you and another individual interrupted with pauses and lost thoughts? For many individuals, conducting a successful conversation can be quite a challenge. Put this conversation in a workplace setting and the challenges can become exponentially worse. However, there are a number of ways in which any individual can facilitate a successful interaction, one of which is emotional intelligence. 

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to identify and understand the emotions of both oneself and others. Generally, the EQ trait is split into two major categories, personal and social competence. Personal competence handles the individual’s ability to stay aware of their own emotions and interactions, and determines their self-awareness and self-management skills. On the other hand, social competence addresses the individual’s interactions with others, and is dominated by skills such as social awareness and relationship management. These skills play a major role in a variety of settings, ranging from workplace performance, leadership, and everyday conversations. 

Female retail assistant in her shop

Combining Emotional Intelligence and conversations

Conversational skills are a vital ability for any individual, as it has important applications in both the personal and professional realms. 

The following are examples of ways in which emotional intelligence can create a smoother, dialogue between two individuals: 

1. Personal understanding: 

Do you sometimes find yourself at a loss for what to say? If this is the case, then it may be because you don’t have a clear grasp of your own emotional level. A high level of emotional intelligence grants individuals with the ability to perceive and understand their own emotions as they occur. This is a vital skill, as it allows them to manage their emotions during a conversation and make sure they are kept in check. With this awareness, emotionally intelligent individuals can ensure that they know exactly where the conversation will go. 

2. Connect on a deeper level:

One of the reasons why individuals are unable to hold a successful conversation is because they lack commonality. This may stem from the reason that they had just met, or are from completely different backgrounds. However, emotional intelligence helps individuals overcome this boundary with a number of skills and advantages. For example, emotionally intelligent individuals better able to perceive the emotions of others, understanding their subsequent interactions on a deeper level. They are able to pick up on more in-depth feelings such as motivations or desires, using this innate perception to move the conversation forward.   

3. Keep track of relationships: 

Given enough time, you’ve probably built up quite a network of connections at your workplace. But with the sheer amount of names and details, it’s likely that a few will be lost in subsequent conversations. It can be embarrassing to forget a name, once you’ve realized that you’ve had multiple interactions with the individual. Luckily, one of the key traits of emotionally intelligent individuals is the ability to manage  relationships. Not only does it help you keep track of your various connections, it also improves their quality and likelihood of success.  

With emotional intelligence, individuals are able to navigate social complexities and deal with the various interactions that play into a successful conversation. 

is interested in emotional intelligence at work and understanding the results of her eq tests. She loves to explore psychology, business, and sports in relation to becoming a motivational keynote speaker

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