EQ in Construction: How Emotional Intellect Helps Us Thrive
You’re probably already familiar with intelligence quotient (IQ) tests, but an alternative yet equally valuable measurement, emotional quotient (EQ) is becoming increasingly important to the construction industry for hiring, keeping, and managing employees. Read on to learn more about this emerging trend and how it applies to your job site.
Emotional Intelligence Explained
While your IQ measures your intellect, EQ measures your emotional intelligence. According to Positive Psychology, EQ measures your ability to understand others and what motivates them, and your ability to understand your own emotions and motivations. EQ helps us navigate tough conversations, console loved ones, and motivate teams. It measures our ability to be self-aware and empathize with others; empathy being an important trait of strong leaders.
EQ in Project Management and Transformational Leadership
We work in a project-based industry. On a job, many teams and subcontractors must come together to work collectively toward a goal, from masons to engineers to architects. To manage these different factors, you need skills like communication, collaboration, and critical thinking — all of which require high EQ.
In fact, according to The Journal of Education in the Build Environment, research suggests a powerful connection between effective transformational leadership in construction executives and high EQ scores. Transformational leadership, meaning, engaging and motivating employees through developing shared interests rather than giving orders “because the boss says so.”
They found this kind of leadership helps reduce occupational injuries in the construction industry, according to the Construction Management and Economics journal. So, high EQ help managers connect and empathize with their employees, providing space for them to share their ideas, learn without judgment, and safely perform at their job.
EQ Can Help With Labor Shortages
In an industry with a well-known labor shortage, EQ can help.
Recruiters who show empathy and self-awareness, and can identify those traits in others, form stronger connections during the hiring process and are better able to retain those hires long term. Therefore, not only does EQ help identify strong candidates, but it also makes candidates feel good about accepting job offers.
EQ also helps gauge how well a candidate can manage their own emotions, make decisions under stress, and work well with others. Building a strong team with these skills improves the team’s function and the employees’ overall experience, leading to higher job satisfaction and lower turnover.
How to Improve EQ
Though some may have an easier time developing their EQ than others, there’s no doubt that these skills lead to a more effective working environment.
Luckily, unlike an IQ score which has a relatively fixed number, you can improve your EQ score with a little practice. Making a conscious effort to respond instead of reacting to conflict, improve your listening skills, accept constructive criticism, and being more approachable are just a few ways to strengthen your EQ. If you’d like more information on developing your EQ, read this article from the Harvard School of Professional Development.
Phoenix Masonry is Committed to a Healthy Workplace
We’re committed to building an environment where our masons can thrive. That’s why we prioritize transparency, accountability, and open communication. Are you looking for a masonry contractor that’s committed to teamwork and effective leadership? Or, are you looking for a job where your EQ will be valued, reach out to us, today.