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When discussing the multiple ways intelligence can manifest, people often point to IQ as the all-encompassing umbrella term that can determine how intelligent someone is.

Today, it is becoming increasingly common to assess not how high our intelligence quotient is but rather how high our emotional quotient is, and subsequently place effort on improving this ability. An individual’s emotional quotient (commonly referred to as their EQ) refers to how well they can recognize their own emotions and the emotions of others and how well they can handle these emotions and relationships as a whole positively.

It is now commonly understood that while IQ may be a good assessment of a person’s general intellectual abilities, EQ determines how well a person functions in the workplace. A person’s emotional intelligence affects how well they understand themselves, which subsequently affects aspects of the workplace like how well this person interacts with coworkers, how well they manage their own tasks, and even how well they can perform these tasks. Recognizing the value of emotional intelligence can single-handedly affect a business’s and its employees’ long-term success.

01. Empathy

Empathy can be defined as the ability to understand and share the feelings of others. This quality largely determines how well a person can relate to those around them and how well they can respond to these feelings.

Having high emotional intelligence inherently means having a high degree of empathy, which in turn will affect the general atmosphere of the workplace. Employees who can be empathetic with each other are employees that can work well together.

02. Self-Regulation

Self-regulation refers to a person’s ability to discern their own emotions and subsequently appropriately respond to them. Having a high EQ allows an individual to assess, analyze, and respond to their emotions, which results in an individual being better able to control their emotions.

Consider an instance wherein an individual is experiencing strong emotion. In these instances, it is common for people to overreact and lash out, whether it be through yelling, tears, or even silence. While justified in many circumstances, these responses may be a reaction to a feeling and not the event itself. Being able to assess the feeling and why this feeling is being had will affect a person’s ability to regulate the emotion, fostering greater clarity and overall well-being.

03. Social Skills

The ability to interact with others appropriately is vital to both successes in the workplace and success in life. Generally, the workplace is often a collaborative space where every individual contributes to the overall company culture.

Therefore, having the ability to operate within these social settings ensures that the proverbial ship keeps afloat. More fundamentally, humans require a certain amount of human interaction, which is why having emotional intelligence is important because it gives a person the tools to maneuver through society and fulfill their basic human needs.

5 EQ Skills To Learn Now

So we understand that emotional intelligence is important in all facets of life and that it can be improved over time. As such, it would prove wise for entrepreneurs to study their own EQ and see where they can improve.

It’s been proven that emotional intelligence is a metric for entrepreneurial success, even more so than IQ. As such, here are five skills you can begin developing to boost your EQ and, eventually your business.


Relationship Management

One of the most prominent benefits of a high emotional intelligence is that it allows an individual to develop relationships with the people in their lives. When a person has a high emotional intelligence, they are more in tune with the feelings of others, which allows them to better understand and relate to these people.

This ability contributes to the strength of your relationships as a whole and your knowledge of yourself. No one person is an island, which is why the relationships we build are so central to our self-worth, identity, and place in the world.



Self-awareness is the branch of emotional intelligence that determines how well a person understands their own emotions—being self-aware means understanding what you’re feeling, why you’re feeling it, and how you can regulate it. In the workplace, this skill looks like being able to assess and respond to your emotions when conflict presents itself.

Perhaps your boss surprised you with a last-minute project that will take up your entire weekend. In this instance, self-awareness might allow you to process your emotions before responding to your boss, thus ensuring you respond appropriately and in a manner that allows you to communicate your thoughts effectively.



There are many benefits to having a high EQ, including the ability to motivate yourself. While this may not seem obvious initially, having a high degree of emotional intelligence allows you to assess your thoughts and emotions, which contributes to your understanding of yourself. Because of this, individuals with a high EQ can better evaluate their motivation levels and discern the proper approach.

Having a high emotional intelligence means understanding that motivation is often fleeting and needs support. The most successful people are capable of motivating themselves, but this is because they understand that they can’t wait for inspiration to hit before they get to work. Understanding your limitations means you have a better chance of overcoming them.


Ability To Listen

As an entrepreneur, much of your job involves being able to listen to the people around you. The best entrepreneurs have an uncanny ability to listen and understand the information they’re given truly. Having a high emotional intelligence means understanding the value of differing opinions and being able to entertain them, even if not necessarily accepting them.

Fortunately, developing this skill is as simple as staying quiet and focusing on what the people around you say. Without realizing it, people often tend to focus more on what they’re preparing to say rather than what they’re currently hearing. Remember to be an active listener in these conversations so that you can maximize every interaction.


Hearing Criticism

This skill tends to relate to the one mentioned above because, in order to be able to hear criticism, you must first be able to listen properly. The best entrepreneurs understand that high emotional intelligence directly contributes to their ability to digest criticism.

Due to the nature of running a business, criticism or dissenting opinions are common. While every bit of criticism isn’t worth listening to, constructive criticism is. Unfortunately, the most relevant criticism is often the hardest to hear, which is why it’s all the more important. Having high emotional intelligence will strengthen this skill and make you more resistant to critique.

Developing EQ

The value of developing a higher EQ is multifaceted and lifelong, but like with any new skill, it requires time to develop. Fortunately, the skills you can develop to increase your emotional intelligence are relatively simple. With dedicated practice and enough honesty with yourself, you’ll find your EQ increasing over time.