Role of Emotional Intelligence in Business

“It’s not an IQ contest. if your ideas aren’t heard, it doesn’t matter- social and emotional intelligence are really important. Understanding how to elicit an emotion in another person is a really important skill.” – Brittan Bright

We have discussed at length the importance for companies to address the needs of the customers by identifying what is important to them. The most important need is emotional and drives how customers perceive their experiences with your company. Despite digitization and large scale globalization, emotional needs are a huge focus area for customers and the companies that have emotional intelligence in business will be more successful than others. Customers are high on emotional intelligence too and even though it may be an intangible aspect, it still affects the way they interact with others, with companies and make buying and personal decisions. We will focus on how companies can make use of emotional intelligence in business to get better.

Emotional intelligence in business is about being aware of the people who work with you and those whom you serve. It is about managing your business by first being mindful of how your actions will affect the interactions you have with others. It is the ability to manage behaviours and emotions. It is a company’s ability to use the awareness of their behaviour with customers and become more flexible and amenable to understanding the customers rather than focusing on their own interests. Emotional intelligence in business will allow companies to improve their relationships with customers by responding to their emotional needs. This will happen by accurately picking up on the emotions of their customers and providing the kind of products and services that will address those emotions.

As companies improve on emotional intelligence they will find that their performance in the market improves. They would be directing their energy and effort in a focused manner thereby improving the way that customers view them. Companies would be able to say and do the things that the customers would want to hear and see. They would be more intuitive and sensitive to their customers and will encourage a culture internally that is open, is mutually respectful and fosters team work among all the members of the organization. Emotional intelligence in business will ensure that companies hire leaders and managers that understand their employees better and strive to constantly motivate them. Such a work culture is extremely conducive to providing great service to customers paving the way for success and profitability for the company.

Emotional intelligence in business is probably a fairly new concept since the earlier thought process of company stalwarts seemed to be managing through intimidation and control. Such people would find it difficult to adapt to a more collaborative and less authoritarian manner of working but this is the need of the hour. For companies to succeed it is important to understand the growing role of emotional intelligence in business and use it to cover all aspects of daily operations. Leaders who are high on emotional intelligence lead their staff with respect, mutual appreciation and are open to taking feedback and suggestions irrespective of the level or position occupied by the staff members.

Emotional intelligence in business allows companies to extend the same respect and responsiveness to their external customers too.  Empathy, care and understanding are much easier for companies that practice emotional intelligence in business and manage their operations through positive interactions. Companies – to succeed – need to consistently and continuously demonstrate their ability to listen to customers, anticipate their needs and have a complete grasp of the changing needs and expectations of the customers. Companies can use the data they receive about customers to understand common threads in the feedback and use them to make improvements and changes that the customers would like to see. It is a well-known fact that retaining current customers is easier than attracting new ones. However, companies that use emotional intelligence in business find it easier to attract more new customers and also increase the number of loyal customers, thereby gaining on reputation and profitability.

The great part is that the new and latest technology supports emotional intelligence in business.  Companies adopt new software and other technology to be able to interpret customer data to understand customer needs better. This technology coupled with emotional intelligence will allow companies to take action that is more meaningful and useful to customers. The companies will truly understand the importance of getting customer feedback in normal situations and not just wait to do so through structured and once in a while surveys. Every verbal and non-verbal communication from customers will be used to understand the customers and make improvements where necessary. Throughout the customer’s journey with the company, every effort will be made to address the spoken and unspoken needs of the customers.

Emotional intelligence in business allows companies to make time for more one-on-one interactions and responses to customers. When a customer poses an issue, it is something that is unique and distinct to them and they expect to be responded to in the same way and companies that are high on EI, will comply. Even automated responses and self-service for customers would be driven by emotional intelligence, allowing for more dynamic and speedier service that reduces customer effort by a great deal. Customers love to be around people and businesses that not only take care of them but also make them feel like they can trust and depend on the company. Customers are extremely sensitive to a lack of willingness to help and can instantly gauge poor service. Emotional intelligence in business makes customer service a pleasure – customer satisfaction becomes a given as customers are able to express what they need during interactions and they can be sure that even the company representatives would be able to successful understand what is required.

– As emotional intelligence in business becomes all-pervasive, companies are able to manage and take into account feedback from customers from all available channels. Companies will create text, pictures, graphics, videos and other multi-media communication to help customers get a clearer picture of what the company can offer and what the customers can expect. These multi-media images easily depict that a company has taken customer feedback into account and serve to improve the customer’s view of the company.

Emotional intelligence in business is picking up and acquiring more importance than before. Companies are on the rise and the number of skilled employees is not growing at the same rate and companies could find themselves facing a serious talent shortage making it more imperative to retain the best employees. Companies that are emotionally intelligent will find it easier to do so rather than companies that don’t treat their employees well. Breaks in service through employee attrition will lower customer service levels and in turn make it difficult for companies to keep customers from leaving.

Incorporate emotional intelligence in business to retain customers, employees and all those who help your company run.  This is actually very much in the realm of common sense, but is sadly ignored. To harness the power of and weave emotional intelligence in business companies must start by hiring people high on emotional intelligence and make it an indispensable part of their culture. The leaders must display EI in their behaviour when dealing with all. As the company’s reputation enhances it will draw more customers and also ensure that the existing ones continue to do business and bring business to you for a very long time.

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