Emotional intelligence it is an awareness of our emotional responses and how they guide our behavior in situations. In this video, you will find ways to take your protégés interpersonal skills to the next level.
- In the TV show, Silicon Valley, a super-smart CEO brags about how he does not need interpersonal skills because he outsources them to his assistant. This is funny on TV, but not so much fun if you've ever experienced it in real life. Most of us, including your protégé, will benefit tremendously from having great interpersonal skills, or emotional intelligence, EQ. EQ is an awareness of our emotional responses and how they guide our behavior in social and professional situations.
It can account for nearly 60% of workplace performance in all types of jobs. Let's review three ways you can help your protégé boost their EQ. One, self-awareness. This is about being able to clearly see your strengths and weaknesses, not only from your own perception, but from the eyes of others, as well. I like to help my protégés access their level of self-awareness by first asking them to reflect on past critical incidents in their career, and then answering the following questions.
What would others say about you and how you handled these situations that are generally positive? What negative feedback or improvement suggestions would others say about you in terms of how you handled your critical incidents in the past? What general beliefs do you have about yourself that are limiting and you would like to change? This exercise provides insights to help mentees set realistic goals around how they can improve themselves.
Self-management is a close cousin to self-awareness, but it is important to understand the distinction. Self-management is about the ability to actually regulate yourself and your emotions. To help protégés improve their skills in self-management, I suggest they first review the goals set earlier, then develop a system of rewards as a tool to reinforce their desired behavior. For example, when I finish writing my Lynda script for the day, I get to take a walk as a reward.
Rewards are unique to individuals. Here are some rewards that my protégés have used in the past, champagne, chocolate, checking emails, surfing, running, watching TV, et cetera. When your protégé makes progress, reward them with praise and celebrate small wins. Empathy is the third EQ skill you can help your protégé develop. Empathy is the ability to not just understand someone else's feelings, but to actually put yourself in another's shoes.
Mirroring is one tool I love to teach protégés to improve their empathy. It's matching another person's nonverbal messages. Recently, I had a conversation with a protégé and I demonstrated mirroring in our conversation before I explained the tool to her. My protégé popped into my office. She was really animated and was very excited, telling me about her new ideas for marketing. So I stood up, too, and raised my voice and also got big with my expressions and showed a lot of animation.
When I want to change the mood, I sat down, lowered my voice, and took a breath. (sigh) When I did this, she followed suit. Then I explained, I was using mirroring to match her energy and show empathy for her excitement. When you're done watching this video, try mirroring and see how it works for you. The good news about interpersonal skills is that, as humans, we have the most amazing capacity to change and improve our EQ our whole lives.
One of the most satisfying aspects about being a mentor is watching your protégé improve before your very eyes.
She also offers guidance on building trust and chemistry, providing feedback, and helping your protégé make critical career and work decisions and become resilient in the face of challenges. She also helps you address common obstacles, including a protégé that fails to meet expectations or violates trust, and explains how to gracefully exit the relationship.
Lynda.com is a PMI Registered Education Provider. This course qualifies for professional development units (PDUs). To view the activity and PDU details for this course, click here.
The PMI Registered Education Provider logo is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.
- Building a relationship with your protégé
- Talking and listening with impact
- Giving feedback
- Developing trust
- Setting goals
- Developing your protégé's skills
- Managing mentoring relationships
- Overcoming common obstacles
- How to make time for mentoring