I was honoured to speak at last week’s Consumer Goods Revenue Growth Management Forum in London about the power of emotional intelligence (EQ) to unlock your commercial performance. I often describe EQ as a catalyst that will accelerate your success in life, but don’t just take my word for it. Research carried out by the Carnegie Institute of Technology shows that 85 percent of your financial success is due to skills in “human engineering,” your personality and ability to communicate, negotiate, and lead. Surprisingly, only 15 percent is due to technical knowledge or skills.  This highlights the invaluable role emotional intelligence plays in setting you up for success.

Below are the top ten reasons why people with high levels of EQ differentiate themselves and thrive in all areas of their life:

  1. You handle stress This means you function well under pressure and are skilled at balancing work and life commitments.This helps you prioritise your mental health and boost your sense of wellbeing.
  2. You collaborate well with others because you have highly developed social skills that allow you to get along with a diverse range of people.You understand there is no I in team and seek to get the best from the people your work with.
  3. You are a good listener. Your ability to actively listen and respond to others is crucial for building strong relationships.  You recognize that hearing is involuntary and listening is a skill. You “read” beyond the words and interpret non-verbal cues to understand what really makes the other person tick.
  4. You are open to feedback and adopt a growth mentality. You see feedback as a gift that helps you to up your game, rather than acting defensively and resisting change.
  5. You have high levels of empathy (not to be confused with sympathy). You can understand other people’s perspective and are sensitive to their particular needs.
  6. You are seen as a safe pair of hands because you behave in a cool, calm and collected way. You don’t get flustered and earn respect from others by rising above those daily irritations.
  7. You make thoughtful & informed You take the time to consider the outcomes of your decisions instead of acting in haste.
  8. You are optimistic. You adopt a solution-orientated approach and bounce back from setbacks by taking the learnings and moving forwards.
  9. You have a strong sense of fulfilment. You understand what really motivates you in life and take practical steps to help you reach your goals.
  10. Most importantly of all, you achieve greater success in life. You are more likely to live longer, be financially better off and are less likely to suffer from depression.

Whatever your job title, it’s only by taking the time to recognise the true value of emotional intelligence, that you can take practical steps to hone your EQ skills on a daily basis and achieve your full potential.