Emotional Intelligence 101 : The Know-it-all
Consider this scenario : Henry is the leader of a development team and has a great idea for resolving a current system problem. He schedules a meeting to share his idea and no one shows up. He is confused and wonders why people seem to be avoiding him.
What do you think could have led to this predicament?
Well. It could be that everyone on the team has come to the conclusion that Henry is s basically a "know-it-all". He doesn't want to listen to anyone, and assumes that no one could possibly have a better solution than he. In countless meetings, he has "held" the floor, doing all the talking, and then when finished, adjourns the meeting, allowing no time for questions or further discussion.
"I did it my way" was Henry's favorite song.
Basically the team feels that since Henry has all of the ideas, he should just proceed. Why hold a meeting? Their ideas or thoughts did not matter anyway. Henry was left wondering why no one seemed to "buy-in" or show any enthusiasm. Morale on the team was very low.
What could be the cause of Henry's behavior? How can it be resolved?
The cause : Henry has very low self-awareness. This is the foundation skill of Emotional Intelligence. He is not aware of how he is perceived by the team when he is hoarding the conversation, ignoring the thoughts of others and/or cutting them off in mid-sentence.
How can this situation be resolved? Henry needs very candid feed-back from a trusted colleague, manager, or coach. In an effective and respectful way, he needs to be made aware of how he "shows-up" in meetings.
Self-awareness is considered the foundation of Emotional Intelligence. It is the skill that allows you to notice and understand what you do or feel and how your actions impact the people around you. In this scenario, Henry was not aware and did not seem to care about the thoughts and feelings of others. He was not aware of the team's body language during meetings. He was very proud of himself.
We all need feed-back: I am a firm believer in the benefits of asking for and being open to candid fee-back. We all need someone who can help us "see" ourselves. We also must be able to hear the feed-back with gratitude and consider if there is helpful advice that we can apply to improve.
In this situation, Henry needs to seek ways to become more self-aware. He should work with someone who can help him analyze what he does, why he does it, and partner with him to build an action plan for changing his behavior.
My name is Inez Jordan. I am a reflective coach, specializing in emotional intelligence and building your personal presence. As a certified emotional intelligence coach, I enjoy partnering with clients to help them be the very best that they can be.
What did you think of this scenario? Did something resonate with you? Share your comments below.
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