The business environment has constantly changed and to enhance project results, and at the same time maximize the use of resources, it is essential and opportune for a project manager to recognize and apply the principles of Emotional Intelligence (EI). The project manager has to create an environment suitable for stakeholders to communicate clearly, handle challenges more effectively and make committed choices in order to act strategically and swiftly. To advance as a Project Manager requires understanding and mastery of emotional intelligence concepts.
Understanding and using EI is now critical for success.
It has been hypothesized that on average the competition can replicate and better any technology in a short period. So what is going to differentiate your firm, your project team, and your project deliverables? In this instance it’s not essentially your technology. Your ability to create the correct project environment that will permit team members to be motivated and utilize their potential. To optimize the effects of the environment is categorically crucial to promote emotional intelligence.
The workforce today demand different needs that relate to fulfillment and values. It is important for project leaders to understand and accommodate for these differences. If executed well, the result will result in enhanced performance.
Emotional Intelligence (EI) is the ability to sense, understand, manage and apply the information and power of emotions as your greatest source of energy, motivation, connection and influence. Old-fashioned thinking had it that: leave emotions out of it. Today, you cannot. Emotions will always be present and literally nothing great has ever been accomplished minus the power of emotions behind it.
By quashing the facts presented to you by emotions, decisions made are with but limited data. Emotions in themselves are neither good nor bad; they are simply information. However, it is how you manage the responses to your emotions that turns out to be good or bad. EI is therefore the ability to deliberately manage emotions in order for them to work for you both professionally and personally. Being able to master good EI in order to reason well and be competitive is therefore very necessary.
Project team members are believed to have Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EQ) and it can be assessed. Research has proved that teams that achieve and sustain high performance have a high EQ. Current studies further demonstrate that EQ is now considered to be two times as significant as IQ, experience and education, where success is concerned. One can use his/her IQ to make rational decisions when he/she possess a good EQ.
Emotional Intelligence is not an oxymoron. The advancement of brain wave scan technology of the late 1980s led to the discovery of the “Emotional Brain”. Reason and emotion has been proved by neuroscience that the neo-cortex and the limbic system, (the emotional brain), are intended to be used collectively. The limbic system offers meaning to our actions and in the absence of meaning it is impossible to align and commit.
In as much as IQ is relatively fixed, EQ for the project team can easily be raised with immediate results. A high EQ will allow you to use your IQ better. An example can be a time when one is angry or jealous. It is not easy to analyze situations and make sound decisions in such a moment.
Emotions are resources that cannot be replaced and provide us with important information. Most significant achievements have been driven by emotions, be it relationships, business transactions or the award of a project. Rational decision making cannot do away with feelings as they assign values to choices. Emotions are your source of energy. They are a source of energy for project team members. The driving force behind art, technology, science, culture and all significantly successful achievements is the union of emotions and reason.
Emotions can be used to improve and guide your thinking. Possessing a low EQ mostly translates to reduced performance and remaining in middle management forever. Not everyone with amazingly high IQs make the most out of their abilities they mostly do not have good people skills and do not comprehend their deficiencies. Contrary to those with high EQ who are able to weather storms, avoid being personal on matters that shouldn’t be, can easily network effectively and channel their energy and efforts on identified goals.
Ability to persuade and influence others. With high EI one is able to discover and express his/her authenticity. When one recognize, respond, and respect him/herself the effect is that others will recognize, respond, and respect such a one. This provides the ability to communicate with impact, build relationships and maintain an aligned and motivated project team throughout the entire duration of the project.
The removal of barriers in working with others. The possession of high EQ elevates trust and influence the potential of others to create innovative strategies for increasing shareholder value.
Quickly transform change, the ability to convert problems and conflict into opportunities.
Support the team in producing project success. Ninety percent of the critical success factors (CSFs) for successful project implementation are linked to EI directly. To measure success of a project we consider the success criteria of: (a) on time, (b) within budget, (c) a high quality of deliverable, and (d) a satisfied client, and not forgetting the cost of achieving these. The other criteria that must not to left out is apprehending lessons learned. It is literally indefensible to go on and make the same mistake in a project environment. We can go further than just the use of standard tools and technics by understanding EI and be able to achieve success much easily. It is common nowadays to find employees who seek to be more aligned with their personal values and work. They no longer aspire to self-sacrifice for the project bottom line but rather demand to find more meaning in the workplace.