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Why improving emotional IQs makes for better IT leaders

Rich Hein | Feb. 23, 2015
Hiring and retaining talent is becoming a priority as CIOs struggle to find and retain top talent. Raising the emotional IQ of your IT leaders is one big step towards creating a culture where people want to work.

2. Then, ask for a behavioral example.

"Many people stop at this step. We add two additional significant steps," Lynn says.

3. Then try probing for either motive or reflection.

"This tells us significant information about under what circumstances the behavior will be repeated," says Lynn.

4. Then measure the responses based on your pre-determined answers.

Lynn also offers these questions specifically geared toward IT leaders:

  • Tell me about a time when a project was pulling down the morale of your group. How did you know? What did you do?
  • Tell me about a time when you deliberately worked to set the tone with an employee discussion or client discussion. What did you say? How did you say it?
  • Describe a time when an employee was struggling. How did you know? What did you do?
  • Tell me about a time when someone was resisting you or your ideas. What did you do?
  • Describe a time when you fell short on delivering a result. What did you do?
  • Tell me about a time when a team member didn't come through on something and it affected your work. What did you do? What did you say? Who did you tell?
  • Tell me about a time when someone was critical of your work. What did you do? What did you say?
  • Tell me about a time when you had an idea and it was met with resistance. What did you do?
  • Describe a time when you felt that your career was stagnating. What did you do? Who did you tell?
  • Tell me about a client who made unreasonable demands on you or your team. What did you do?
  • Tell me about a time when something you said or did had a positive impact on your team or on a client. How did you know?
  • Tell me about a time when something you said or did had a negative impact on your team or on a client. How did you know? What did you do?

Tips for Improving Your Emotional IQ
One method of enlightenment, according to experts, is to ask colleagues you trust for feedback on your interaction with others. Often times we see ourselves one way and others see us in a completely different light.

When possible slow down the decision-making process. We've all been there before when something happens at work that's either very frustrating or possible elating and we quickly react or jump to a conclusion. Slowing things down sometimes helps to remove some emotion from the process and instead allows you to focus on making data driven decisions. "I learned to slow down my response. Everything is not an emergency. This was causing my staff undue stress," says Lynn.

What works for Larry Bonfante, founder of CIO Bench Coach and CIO of USTA, "Constantly working on self-awareness and forcing myself to see things through the other person's lens by asking the question what's in it for them?

 

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