What makes a good manager a great manager? Most would say that it’s skill and technical ability, but these are nearly worthless without Emotional Intelligence (EQ).

Emotional Intelligence is TWICE as important as technical and cognitive skills in cultivating your management potential and maximizing the success of your business, and management is a crucial role in all stages and levels of a business.

Peter Drucker, the man who basically invented management, said about managers:

“The productivity of work is not the responsibility of the worker but of the manager.”

Why do brilliant people sometimes fail to be good managers? We all know people who are intelligent and successful, but when put into a management position, they fail.  Maybe they have the wrong type of intelligence. Being intelligent, in the sense of having a high IQ, only takes you so far in your ability to lead others within an organization.

A good strategy is worth nothing if it is not implemented well. This is where Emotional Intelligence comes in.

What Is Emotional Intelligence? How Do You Get It?

Well, to address the first question, let’s start with the most important part: good self-management skills. A good manager cannot manage others before learning to manage him or herself.

Once you are able to self-manage, it becomes possible to manage relationships with others well. This requires empathy and social skills. Social skill is at the heart of Emotional Intelligence because nothing important gets done alone, and great management is impossible without great relationships.

What If You’re Not Good At Managing Yourself?

There’s hope! Developing self-discipline is a process that, with a determined spirit, you can embark on right away, by building self- awareness. The place to start in pursuing your  potential is to take stock of your current situation. Self-awareness is the foundational step to building effective self-management. After all, how can you ever change when you don’t even know what you have to work with?

Good self-awareness includes both finding your strengths and admitting your weaknesses. Often, admitting to a weakness is the most difficult part because it requires humility (if you can identify a few real weaknesses, you are already on your way to developing the strength of humility!).

Self-Regulation Follows Self-Management

This the part in which you begin to modify your own behavior. This part of the process is going to take a lifetime to perfect, but begins anew at the break of each day. You always have the opportunity to be better than you were the day before.

What it is that you actually change depends on your situation and is unique to each person. Maybe you need to be more empathetic. Maybe your lack of patience damaged a relationship with someone today. Tomorrow, you have the opportunity to begin repairing the damage and to build new relationships.

We all begin with a certain orientation. The way that someone approaches conflicts and the way in which they filter information is indicative of the world perspective that they have cultivated over the years. This is not a bad thing. In fact, it is unavoidable that everyone makes decisions through the lens of their past.

The Solution

However, if you are going to be able to adjust your orientation around constantly shifting circumstances, you first need to be aware of what you are working with. Then you need to focus on playing to your strengths and improving your weaknesses. It is tough to overcome a lifetime of habits though, and you need to find the thing that motivates you.

Motivation will come from a different place for each person, but if you’re finding it difficult to consistently feel motivated to change yourself, just think about this:

Nothing that’s worth doing in life is easy. If you are in business, you’re most likely interested in maximizing profits, efficiency, and impact. At the first level, this will need a good strategy. The same tactics for analyzing a business’ strategy can be used to analyze a personal strategy. The appropriation of resources and application of capabilities function the same way whether looking at the assets on a balance sheet or the positive and negative characteristics of a person.

What A Manager Needs

A manager needs competency to develop a good strategy, whether on a self-management or company management level.

Managers need to be able to make people capable of joint efforts toward common goals.  This competence, derives from disciplines and practices that provides the information they need, the action they need to take, and the purpose for which they are working. By doing this, they integrate every individual into the whole.

The greatest competency is to be able to have a vision for what needs to be accomplished and the steps necessary to get there. This requires a comprehension of the big picture as well as a purpose for what you are working toward. This can sometimes be vague and abstract, but it takes a certain type of competency to be able to see through the fog and outline an effective course of action.

Don’t Forget

Pursuing Emotional Intelligence will set the foundation for the competency you need to be a successful manager. This will give you the self-awareness, self-regulation, and motivation that you need to develop the strong character that will shape the character of every aspect of your work.

Successful leadership also depends upon Emotional Intelligence. The same character that enables you to be a good manager can begin to support your relationships. Nurturing and utilizing relationships is the essence of business and is a key role for leaders.

When a leader has strong foundational characteristics, they also feed into the greater character of the organization and those under his or her care.