On Social Intelligence, Leadership, and the need to start young #EQ #EI – Janet Fouts

On Social Intelligence, Leadership, and the need to start young #EQ #EI

the leader in meI’ve been listening to Daniel Goleman’s book “Working with Emotional Intelligence” and it is packed with insights into how emotional intelligence affects our ability to lead, whether a team or CEO. As Goleman says in this video, we all *think* we have exceptional emotional intelligence, but we can be brought quickly down to earth by simply asking our teenager! Fortunately for all of us this type of intelligence can be cultivated.

In the video below, Dan shares some tips to learning  social intelligence, and questions to ask yourself to identify what you need to do to expand your social intelligence as well as how that can benefit your company and your life.

How important is it that we teach our children to cultivate emotional and social intelligence?
How can we not seek to enable our children with these skills early? It can set them so far ahead, and I wanted to share a recent experience in San Jose at the Christopher School. I had the pleasure of being part of a tour of the school last week and was impressed with what they are doing, and the presence and leadership displayed by the students we met.

The school principal, Bill Abraham, believes in the values of emotional intelligence and has incorporated Stephen Covey’s The Leader in Me program into the school, from staff to students. The program is based on the premise that “every child possesses unique strengths and can be a leader—which shapes the views of staff to value and develop the whole child.”.  The confidence this can bring a child is tremendous and was exhibited in our tour guides as well as in the classrooms we visited.

The tour was led by students in the 5th, 6th, and 7th grades, and they guided us through what was happening in several classrooms. The kids were learning how to trust their intuition, active listening skills, how to see and manage stress coming at them and make choices proactively, rather than reactively. All huge lessons, whatever the age. What a way to set these kids up for successful lives and to deal with whatever the world throws at them. As more schools embrace programs like this we will see a stronger generation taking the lead.

What has this to do with social media?
Everything. As we use social media for personal or business use, we should be spending more time listening and being aware of how we engage people. Are we communicating effectively through listening and responding? Are we taking a personal approach to connect one-to-one? Are we open to feedback on our communication style? Are we using emotional and social intelligence to look for ways to engage, influence and lead?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on incorporating social intelligence into your life and work. How can we all improve our communication through social media?


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