The Secret To Leadership Success – Is It EQ, SQ or both?

I’ve been involved in leadership development for over 30 years only to discover that leadership requires a good dose of emotional management (EQ) as well as the development of social relationships (SQ). Pre-2006 many people including author Daniel Goleman, put the two intelligences together under the title of emotional intelligence.

Screen Shot 2013-05-30 at 9.59.17 AMHowever, about 17 years ago I began to notice the importance of SQ, or social intelligence, as a separate and vital capacity for leadership success. And it has proven true in my work with CEO’ and management teams as well as school leaders.

An example of this was Stonya H., the CEO of a large organization I worked with. Stonya was one of the most brilliant women I had ever met. She managed the financials of the 10 million dollar business so  well that when her CPA made a mistake, she caught it.When meeting with highest ranking political officials in her state she would barter her organization’s position brilliantly, and almost always win.

But when I met Stonya her leadership team was fractured morale was low and there were silos between departments.

We started by taking a full cultural assessment with all staff. This helped us target the exact areas that needed organizational change. With the report in hand, Stonya and I discussed the situation.

Stonya was one of the most dedicated ‘coachees’ I’d ever worked with. She understood that the turnaround had to start at the top! So we set high benchmarks for change and then chunked them into strategies and action steps. Together we listed the new behaviors she needed to demonstrate in working with her team and the staff.

We then engaged the entire leadership team in the process, setting goals, action steps and detailed targets for each team member and the team as a whole.

The results were stunning. Eighteen months after we started our process, the post assessment showed a powerful positive shift in morale. Silos had dissolved, and staff members expressed greater work life satisfaction.

But emotional (EQ) and social literacy (SQ) isn’t just for leaders. It’s for all of us who have ever experienced impatience, anger, or agitation. It’s for all of us who have ever exhibited these emotions in our tone of voice or behavior with others. Maybe I should have titled this article “The Secret of Happiness and Success – Is it EQ, SQ or Both?” because most of us can use a good dose of EQ SQ reprogramming.

I’m still engaged in the process for my self. So here’s the personal reprogramming formula that I’ve used for years. You can use it with any quality that you may want to enhance or develop.

I’ll use the SQ word of respect as an example:

  • What does respect look, feel and sound like when I’m being with ___________ (this can be a specific person, persons, or a group of people)?
  • What do I need to do to demonstrate respect when I’m with ____________?
  • What words will I use and tone of voice will I use when talking with _______________?
  • I will always ‘freeze frame’ the movie if I start to get agitated and use the breathing technique in the 2 Minute Master Meditation.

Then I revise and visualize specific scenes that I may have done less than satisfactorily. I rerun the scene until I feel really good about it and it resonates with my intention.

I would love to hear how this works for you and what other techniques you use to reprogram and retrain your brain.

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