At the beginning of a new academic year, it is appropriate to take a moment and think about what we could do better in the upcoming 12 months.
Collegiality and teamwork are vital factors in any academic community. We do pretty well in this area, but there is always room for improvement. One of the new ideas about teamwork involves emotional intelligence. In his bestseller Emotional Intelligence, psychologist Daniel Goleman says high intelligence is a less important predictor of success than emotional intelligence.
What is emotional IQ? It includes self-awareness, impulse control, persistence, confidence, self-motivation, empathy, and the ability to get along and to work well with others. In a time that seems preoccupied with technology, it's more important than ever to take these skills seriously. Today we are judged by a new yardstick, not by how smart we are and what skills we have (qualities that are assumed), but by how well we handle ourselves and one another. Maybe this has always been true.
Human resources specialists polled by Goleman (worldwide) show that three abilities named essential for success in any job were all emotional competencies such as trustworthiness, adaptability and a talent for collaboration. The good news is that emotional intelligence is not a fixed quality. People can change themselves. That is, if others think you are rigid and inflexible, all you need is your own motivation to change. Notice when you are inflexible, and give it another thought. Don't tear yourself down; just try to analyze the situation.
There you have it. Being trustworthy, adaptable and easy to get along with are qualities that bring you personal success and more successful teamwork.
Best wishes for a successful year!