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Emotional Intelligence for Effective Leadership


Emotional intelligence is how an individual’s detect, understand and control their emotional states to help them relieve stress, create empathy, boost communication, overcome challenges and solve conflicts. The concept of emotional intelligence is gaining popularity in the corporate world as it is seen as essential for effective leadership. Leading a team is a hectic task that requires an individual to have multiple skills. An individual’s ability to control themselves especially on their feelings is essential to build beneficial relationships in the society. An emotionally intelligent person can know, analyze and manage difficult situations without affecting others. An emotionally intelligent person also helps build stronger relationships, performs better in school and at work, and achieves excellent results in their career and personal goals. Besides, they help one make informed decisions on different life situations concerning a particular event in life. This paper presents a reflective report on the level of my self-regulation and self-awareness as assessed from the Wong and Law Emotional Intelligence Scale.

Self-Awareness and Self-Regulation

Self-awareness is when an individual has complete knowledge concerning their feelings, emotions, morals, behaviors, strengths, and weaknesses. An individual with self-awareness also has a high understanding of how their feelings and behaviors affect other people emotionally hence influencing their decisions on how to live with others. Self-awareness is required in leadership since it ensures that a leader remains sensitive to their feelings and those of their followers hence enabling them to control them to generate maximum output in their work places. Emotional intelligence is also concerned with ones’ ability to know their emotions and behaviors and also determining how they affect their own performance and that of their colleague. Friedman et al. (2021) states that many people holding leadership position are self- aware though if tested they would prove otherwise. If most leaders really had self- awareness, all employees would experience a good time in their places of work without conflicts with their bosses. Working with people without self- awareness is difficult since it is difficult to collaborate towards achieving the goals of the organization. Lack of self- awareness creates high anxiety between the leaders and their followers hence decreasing the motivation in the work places.

On the other hand, self-regulation is how an individual control and direct their emotions and feeling in different life situations. Self- regulation is easily assessed when an individual is faced with difficult situation that provoke negative hard feeling such as anger and frustrations. People with negative hard feeling experience great challenges in managing their feelings in difficult times since they cannot develop a positive attitude in challenging times. These people respond to different situations by reacting in accordance with the prevailing situation (McClelland et al., 2017). The easier it is for an individual to absorb impulses and to make positive responses, the more an individual is termed mature. Whenever one is experiencing challenges with handling emotions, one is advised pause and calm down to help them figure out the prevailing situation and the most appropriate reaction to give. Emotionally intelligent leaders regulate their emotions in a way that they have lass accusations of being verbally abusive or stereotyping others.

Self-Assessment Using the Wong and Law Emotional Intelligence Scale

I completed a self-assessment on my self-regulation and self-awareness using the Wong and Law Emotional Intelligence Scale. The Wong and Law Emotional Intelligence Scale (WLEIS) is a tool developed by Kenneth S. Law and Chi- Sum Wong. The dual established the scale on their article, “The effects of leader and follower emotional intelligence on performance and attitude: An exploratory study.” The study worked on the hypothesis that emotional intelligence affects an individual’s performance and productivity in the workplace. Hence, the two developed the scale to measure individual intelligence to determine the relations between their emotional intelligence and productivity. The WLEIS suggests that the emotional intelligence of an individual is comprised of four elements which are the self- emotional appraisal (SEA), Other’ Emotional Appraisal (OEA), the regulation of emotion (ROE), and the Use of Emotion (UOE) (Goel & Srivastava, 2019). The SEA refers to how an individual can naturally understand and assess their own emotions and express them. The OEA is an individual’s ability to recognize and understand the feelings of those around them. ROE is an individual’s emotional regulation ability, which enables them to recover quickly from distress. UOE refers to an individual’s ability to control and direct their emotions to achieve productive tasks and boost their performance.

Through the WLEIS, I realized that I have high self-regulation and high self-awareness. On the (SEA), I noted that I know why I experience particular emotions at one specific time. I also found that I understand my emotion very clearly to define the various emotions I experience on different occasions. On the OEA, I noted that I am an excellent observer to identify the feelings and emotions of other people. I am also compassionate not to hurt the feelings of other people. On the UOE assessment, I noted that I am self-motivated to improve myself. Besides, I always have positive thoughts telling myself that I am competent in my position. On the ROE, I noted that I could control my emotions, whereas I learned to control my anger when provoked. It also stated that I could stay calm in an argument without raising my voice or getting aggressive.

Strategies to Improve my Self-Regulation and Self-Awareness

Since emotional intelligence is essential for excellent performance in my profession, I will use several strategies to boost my self-regulation and self-awareness aspects of emotional intelligence. The Bar- On’s EI Competencies Model offers effective and efficient methods for improving emotional intelligence. In the model, Bar-On claims that emotional intelligence is a system of conjoined behaviors arising from social and emotional competencies (Furnham, 2020). He also claims that the social and emotional competencies are essential for every leader since they influence their performance at work and behavior. Hence, he provides five scales that one must meet to achieve different components of emotional intelligence. These scales include interpersonal, self-perception, decision-making, self-expression, and stress management (Friedman et al., 2021). The model further indicates that the five scales of emotional intelligence are dependent on 15 subscales which include: self-regard, stress tolerance, emotional self-awareness, interpersonal relations, assertiveness, independence, reality testing, self-actualization, emotional expression, problem-solving, flexibility, optimism, impulse control, social responsibility (Goel & Srivastava, 2019). Thus effective strategies for improving self-awareness and self-regulation must be able to boost the sub- scales. According to Rubens et al. (2018), a professional can enhance their self-regulation ability through meditation, keeping a journal, and being accountable. Meditation boosts individuals’ self-regulation by allowing them to reflect on their emotions and developing strategies for controlling them. Through frequent meditation, I will stay calm when I experience difficult moments in the workplace. A journal helps one clear up their minds and reduce the speed of their racing thoughts (Goel & Srivastava, 2019). Accountability improves self-regulation by supporting one to control their emotions to prevent disruptions to their goals. In this case, I will

Self-awareness can be improved through reading, meditation, reading, understanding other people, and setting timelines. These strategies relate to Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence Model of understanding emotional intelligence. Goleman claimed that emotional intelligence depends on three aspects: relationship management, social awareness, and self-awareness. He states that the aspects are based on 12 subscales emotional self-awareness, emotional self-control, empathy, conflict management, inspiration leadership, teamwork, influence, positive outlook, achievement orientation, adaptability, and coaching and mentoring. According to McClelland et al. (2017), meditation improves self-awareness by helping one understand their emotional wellbeing more clearly. Mindfulness meditation will help me observe my emotions, hence helping me be more aware of my emotional state. Reading high-quality fictional books helps one be more aware of their emotional state since different scenes on the books trigger other emotions. The books also give new experiences which allow one to observe their actions, thoughts, and feelings in new situations (Macklem, 2020). Hence, I will plan to adopt a culture of reading widely during my free time to improve my self-awareness which will help me perform excellently in my profession.

Understanding other people’s emotional well-being is also an effective strategy for improving self-awareness. Experiencing other people’s feelings and emotions makes one empathetic, which emerges from understanding different emotions. Inzlicht et al. (2021) stated that one could not be empathetic without understanding their emotional conditions. He continued to say that one can only feel other people’s emotions at the same level they think of themselves. I will seek to understand how people feel about particular situations, thus helping me to shape my own emotions. As a leader, I will inquire about my followers’ feelings towards different situations then relate them with mine to know whether there is a possibility of conflicting with them. Setting timelines in life also improves one’s self-awareness. Timelines create self-awareness by establishing a standard and accurate strategy for assessing one’s performance in life (Macklem, 2020). The timeline promotes self-awareness by allowing individuals to understand different changes in their lives, hence allowing them to develop effective strategies for improving themselves in different seasons of their lives according to their timeline. Therefore, I will set goals with a specific timeline to help me stay conscious and aware of other changes in my life.


Emotional intelligence is how an individual detect, understand and control their emotional state to help them relieve stress, create empathy, boost communication, overcome challenges and solve conflicts. Leaders’ emotional intelligence includes self-regulation, self-awareness, social skills, motivation, and compassion. Using the Wong and Law Emotional Intelligence Scale (WLEIS), I learned that I have high self-awareness and self-regulation. Essential strategies can be used to improve ones’ self-awareness and self- effectiveness concerning the Bar-On EI Competency Model and Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence Model. Bar-On EI Competency Model claims that emotional intelligence is a system of conjoined behaviors arising from social and emotional competencies. Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence Model emotional intelligence depends on three aspects: relationship management, social awareness, and self-awareness.


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