If you're new to the emotional intelligence conversation, Harvard researcher Daniel Goleman authored the internationally best-selling book Emotional Intelligence (1995), which spent more than 18 months on The New York Times bestseller list.
He followed up with Working with Emotional Intelligence (1998), arguing that non-cognitive skills can matter as much as IQ for workplace success and leadership effectiveness.
In Goleman's EQ framework, once you land a job in your field of expertise and start considering things like increasing your role, getting promoted, leading others, and navigating political landscapes, IQ will be begging for EQ to show up and take over.
In Goleman's own words, "Even if you are a solo bench engineer coming up with a better widget, no one will pay attention to you unless you can communicate, persuade, and excite people about that widget -- and that takes emotional intelligence."
So what traits make you great at your job? Goleman just published an informative article highlighting several traits found within the four EQ domains of self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management.
Traits related to self-awareness
You understand your own strengths and limitations and are conscious of the situations and events in your life. During times of frustration, you're able to pinpoint the root and cause of your frustration. You also have clarity on your values and sense of purpose, which allows you to be more decisive when setting a course of action.
Traits related to self-management
You possess emotional self-control and can stay calm under pressure and recover quickly from upsets. You're adaptable in the face of change and uncertainty. You have an achievement orientation -- striving to meet or exceed a standard of excellence and seeking ways to do things better. You also hold a positive outlook: You see the good in people, situations, and events, a valuable competency that can build resilience and set the stage for innovation and opportunity.
Traits related to social awareness
One of the core competencies of social awareness is empathy: You pay full attention to the other person and take time to understand what they are saying and how they are feeling. You always try to put yourself in other people's shoes in a meaningful way. The other core competency in this domain of EQ is organizational awareness, which Goleman describes as reading "the emotional currents and dynamics within a group or organization" and sometimes predicting "how someone on your team or leaders of a company you do business with might react to certain situations, allowing you to approach situations strategically."
Traits related to relationship management
This interpersonal skill, typical of leaders who are coaches and mentors, allows one to act in ways that motivate, inspire, and harmonize with others, while also maintaining important relationships. Goleman says the traits of influence and inspirational leadership are par for the course: "You're a natural leader who can gather support from others with relative ease, creating a group that is engaged, mobilized, and ready to execute the tasks at hand." Obviously, conflict management and dealing with disagreements between multiple sides comes with ease. You can "bring simmering disputes into the open and find win-win solutions," writes Goleman.