“Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.” – Winston Churchill
People all over the world are monitoring various stats and the adverse impact of COVID-19. Everyone is curiously waiting for the vaccine for coronavirus and praying for the return of routine lifestyle. Small and medium businesses (SMBs/SMEs) are running into losses, millions of people have lost their jobs globally, and education in schools and universities is facing a paradigm shift. Students and teachers miss the vibrant campus atmosphere, and working professionals miss their workspace. A majority of us are dealing with stress and anxiety, and the pandemic is taking a toll on our physical, mental, and emotional well being.
Many people do not realize the value of Emotional Health and forget its impact on overall health. It is essential to keep control of our thoughts and feelings, which is only possible for emotionally healthy individuals. Being emotionally healthy does not mean you have to be happy all the time. It means that you can cope up well with the challenges of life and tackle your problems with a different perspective. Emotional Intelligence helps you to bounce back from setbacks and maintain healthy relationships. You are aware of their emotions, both negative and positive, and effectively manage their anger, fear, or excitement.
For example, after a sports event, the Emotional Intelligence or EQ of the losing team plays a crucial role, as they accept their defeat in front of everyone and isolation.
The COVID era is indeed taking us all on the roller coaster ride of life, but we can try to keep adequate control of our emotions. Or at least try to do so!
Entrepreneurs and their employees are hopeful for a new beginning post-COVID. But, it’s a fact that life will not be the same as it has been today or in the past. Let us see the importance of Emotional Intelligence in the post-pandemic world.
Develop Emotional Intelligence at the Workplace
Business leaders and the Human Resource department need to develop Emotional Intelligence skill of the employees as it directly impacts the productivity at the professional or personal front. In the coming days, “EQ is perhaps the most critical skill.” The time has arrived when we stimulate further discussion on this topic, beyond mere acceptance and realize its importance in the years to come.
As the famous adage goes, “It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.”
The main attributes of EQ that will play a pivotal role in the future are:
- Better Communication Skills
- Reduced Stress Levels
- Stress Management
- Conflict Management
- Maintaining and improving old relationships
- Building New Relationships
Most of us acknowledge all of the attributes mentioned above or at least some and realize its importance. But dealing with humans during and post COVID-19 will be completely different as we all have switched to virtual communication, like Zoom calls and Google Meet. Implementing the EQ attributes is very challenging and may lead to misinterpreted statements in the virtual realms rather than face-to-face communication in the actual physical world.
Impact of Remote Working on Emotional Intelligence
The remote working culture is working well for the business leaders as the productivity of employees has increased during work-from-home. It may sound useful to the entrepreneurs, but for many employees, it has become like a run of the mill.
According to a recent article in Forbes, “A California-based Company has tracked a 47% increase in worker productivity.” That’s positive for companies, but some employees find remote working very stressful and draining. Professionals have to meet their stringent daily work targets, working along a lot of distractions at home. Also, they are continually trying to keep safe from the coronavirus. With all this, the work-life balance has shattered for many.
But on the other side, some employees have successfully paved out innovative ways and making the most out of their new home working environment. Firms like Google, Twitter, and Fujitsu have already announced their plans to make remote working a permanent option, even after the COVID-19.
With long working hours, some employees are losing track of time and feeling stressed. Hence, there is more likelihood of physical, mental, and emotional burnout. Ironically, there was a stigma related to remote working before the pandemic, and it was thought that employees will show less productivity if they work remotely, which has now completely reversed. Now, the pendulum is swinging way over the other side, and employees are delivering much more than the expected output. All this comes with a cost of low Emotional Intelligence, and employees need much more empathy, frequent communication, and stress management webinars.
The leaders and Human Resource teams need to make provisions for effective communication with their employees. It is essential to assess, analyze, and empathize with them using appropriate means and channels to boost up their Emotional Intelligence, during and after the pandemic. Unfortunately, we need to re-work on the existing tools and methods and switch to better ways for a better future.
How to improve Emotional Intelligence?
It is pertinent that developed EQ skills help in professional growth. Let us learn how we can work on our Emotional Intelligence and improve it further to tackle adverse situations in a more balanced way.
- Assertive and respectful communication
- Listening patiently, rather than speaking abruptly
- Controlling emotional outbursts during stress
- Become self-motivated
- Building resilience to face challenges
- Maintain a positive attitude
- Practicing self-awareness
- Use criticism constructively
- Excellent leadership skills
- Socialize and become approachable
By practicing the tips mentioned above, employees can develop emotional Intelligence and conquer their success goals.
As employees and employers look hopefully to return to their work environment, post-pandemic, it is essential to work on the Emotional Intelligence of everyone in the organization.