Improving your emotional intelligence

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is a real buzz word in the workplace, but it really does have a tremendous impact on the success of a business. In a nutshell, it is the ability to be aware of and to manage emotions and relationships. IQ will get you in the door, but it is your EQ, your ability to connect with others and manage the emotions of yourself and others, that will determine how successful you are in life.

“I believe that EQ is a pivotal part of an employee’s skillset, as it allows them to identify and empathise more effectively with colleagues and clients,” says Rachel Johnson, owner of Palomino Training Solutions. “This leads to greater engagement; better understanding of what clients need and want; more effective customer service; happier staff and ultimately increased revenue. A win-win for everyone.”

One way to improve your emotional intelligence is to become aware of other people’s feeling and emotions. Accurately identifying emotions starts with the basics: awareness. Many people are just awful at recognising other people’s emotions because they simply don’t look for them. It’s not that they are unable to figure out how someone is feeling; it’s that they don’t know how to pick up the valuable clues. So what do we need to look for?

“Carefully watch people’s facial expressions and be aware of what their faces are telling you. Learn to identify the specific emotions people are expressing,” says Johnson.

You can also listen to people’s voices – the pitch, rhythm, and tone give us clues as to how they are feeling. Perhaps their tone is terse and loud, possibly indicating anger; or perhaps they have an ascending tone, meaning disbelief.

People’s feelings can also be determined by examining their non-verbal behaviour, such as their body posture. If they are leaning forward and facing you, this generally shows that they are interested in what you are saying. If their arms are folded, this generally sends the signal of being closed or defensive.

If you would like to learn more on this subject, join us at our upcoming 2019 Emotional Intelligence courses. They will be held on 24 April, 20 May and 20 June in Cape Town, Pretoria and Durban and the cost is R2,295 ex vat per delegate. This one-day interactive course includes modules on: the impact of EQ; the benefits of EQ; optimism; and much more.

This course is also available as an onsite option at your work premises (contact us for the very competitive prices) and also as an online (e-learning) option.

“Our aim is for delegates to leave our workshops feeling inspired and motivated, with a wealth of knowledge and hands-on tools that they are able to implement immediately,” says Johnson.

Palomino Training Solutions, which was established in 2006, offers over 150 training courses ranging from telephone etiquette, public speaking and business writing to conflict resolution, recruitment & selection and supervisory skills.

For more information, contact Rachel Johnson on 082-878-1164, email [email protected] or visit