Are you familiar with the concept of emotional intelligence? What does emotional intelligence have to do with office culture – you ask? Quite a lot in fact. First let us explain shortly what office culture encompasses. Office culture includes good manners, education and often enough some professional experience is assumed. Even with all of those, if a person lacks emotional intelligence, that person will have difficulties fitting in the team. Obviously we cannot teach you good manners or educate you, or either give you professional experience, but we could guide you in implementing some emotional intelligence in your company and office culture.

Let’s start by clarifying the difference between IQ and EQ. IQ is the coefficient of rational intelligence – the ability to learn and analyze information, according to your age. EQ is the emotional intelligence coefficient, or rather your interpersonal and social skills. We believe now you are starting to understand how emotional intelligence and office culture are linked.

Improving managers’ office culture

Improving emotional intelligence is a way of self-improvement, although through games and behavioral manipulation tricks it can be “thought” subconsciously. When improving office culture through teaching emotional intelligence – it is best to start with ourselves and then proceed with the high management, going down the hierarchical pyramid. As much as it is possible to choose a more settle approach for teaching emotional intelligence your employees, that won’t do for the management. You could test applicants for managerial positions for EQ and hire, those who score highly. But you may already have managers, which you would like to keep and then the best course of action is sending them to emotional intelligence training.

A tip: do not trust advertised miracles – no one can teach emotional intelligence in two hours! This is actually a life-long actualization.

How will that help your company’s office culture improve? Managers will first learn:

  • self- awareness;
  • learn about their own emotions and reactions to them;
  • how they take personal and professional decisions;
  • how to control their feelings;
  • how to deal with stress;
  • how to communicate effectively;
  • empathy;
  • openness;
  • insight;
  • to believe in themselves;
  • to take responsibilities of their actions;
  • group dynamics – to be as much good team leaders as team members;
  • conflict resolution.

Doesn’t it already sound as the perfect manager profile?

Improving team leaders’ office culture

It is understandable that you may not have the resources to invest in your team leaders’ emotional intelligence education as much as in your managers’. Anyhow it is still important your team leaders to possess such qualities. The best advice we could give is to hire or promote emotionally intelligent team leaders.

Next best thing is to train them in some basics like:

  • feedback;
  • proper communication – careful listening and argumentation;
  • conflict resolution;
  • anti-discrimination;
  • motivational tactics, etc.

The team leaders are those who are in immediate relation with the employees and who can make or break the team.

Office culture implies all employees to work as a well-oiled machine. Basic elements of the office culture are to preserve the integrity of all appliances and furniture; to avoid conflicts and seek compromises; to be a team-player; to not discriminate; to take into account other people’s opinions, etc.

Improving employees’ office culture

You may be asking yourself why teach employees office culture by teaching them emotional intelligence if the team leaders are already thought. Never mind how emotionally intelligent the team leader is, if some members of the team are strongly opinionated, stubborn and even offensive this will irrevocably disrupt the team and thus lower the team performance and the individual performance significantly. As we mentioned previously – improving employees’ emotional intelligence and by extension office culture can be done subtly. You will need very skilled team leaders to do that and also a degree of manipulation. It can be achieved through small games, team-building activities and positive and negative conditioning.