How do you build emotional intelligence as a project manager?

Building solid relationships with others is an important aspect of emotional intelligence, and this involves social awareness. Understanding others’ feelings is what social awareness is all about. Empathy, organizational awareness, seeing others clearly, and setting emotional boundaries are the four components. The ability to understand how other people feel is the first component of empathy. You can read another person’s feelings, whether favorable or negative, and respond appropriately.

As a project manager, you must use empathic listening to listen to your team members. Try to figure out what they’re truly experiencing rather than just listening to their words. You must also master the ability to plainly observe others. This necessitates a thorough comprehension of individuals and an accurate assessment of their strengths and weaknesses. It’s more difficult than it appears. Even if you don’t like the individual, try to think objectively; otherwise, your bias will come through. Take the time to look around and think about it.

Organizational awareness is inextricably connected to the ability to perceive others clearly. The ability to recognize the emotional context of your firm, project team, or other organization is known as organizational awareness. What is the power hierarchy? What feelings does it elicit?

Setting emotional boundaries to protect yourself from other people’s emotions is the final phase. It’s vital to understand other people’s feelings, but you shouldn’t let them rule your life. A smart method to help with this is to change your language. So, if you’re furious with someone, say you’re angry, rather than saying they made you angry. It is always preferable to take responsibility for your feelings rather than blame them on others.

Project managers must develop relationships more frequently and quickly than the average person. Relationship management is therefore essential! Establishing stakeholder relationships and cultivating others are two major components of relationship management.

Establishing good stakeholder relationships requires four steps. To begin, identify the project stakeholders, which include team members, vendors, sponsors, and anyone who have an impact on or are affected by the project.

Gather as much information as possible about them next. What is the function of each stakeholder? What are their objectives and passions? What is their method of communication? Develop relationship techniques for them after that. Determine your most productive relationship with them and begin working toward it.

Finally, remember that relationship management is a continual effort. Check in on a frequent basis to ensure that things are going well and that your relationships are yielding the desired results. Establishing regular meetings to check in on how everyone is feeling could help. The development of your team members is the second phase of relationship management. That entails recognizing and praising their abilities, guiding them, and providing constructive feedback.

Investing in the project team is ultimately about developing others. So, first and foremost, recognize their strengths: make them aware of their potential and always express gratitude when they contribute to the project.

After that, give them specific feedback. Targeted feedback is direct, impartial, and geared toward helping the person grow rather than criticizing them. So instead of focusing on someone’s laziness, consider where they may improve. It’s always preferable to discuss what could improve someone’s performance rather than what went wrong.

Finally, never cease mentoring and coaching individuals of your team. When you have the opportunity, offer guidance and encouragement. Make sure they know they may talk to you at any time and that you will listen to them.

Team leadership is the final part of emotional intelligence for project managers. The capacity to lead a project team toward its objectives in a healthy and productive manner is known as team leadership. It’s how you deal with disagreements and keep everyone on track.

The two most critical talents are communication and dispute resolution. Positive communication allows you to maintain the appropriate emotional tone during all interactions. Whether you’re talking with stakeholders, team members, at an interview, or over lunch, it’s an important element of your job as a project manager.

Project managers must communicate in such a way that the appropriate emotional milieu is created and negative feelings are avoided. Consider the situation: you’re ready to hire new employees and you’re apprehensive about doing the interviews. If you don’t face your fears, you can miss out on the appropriate candidate or hire someone who isn’t qualified for the job.

Create a relaxing environment and approach your interviewees with empathy rather than succumbing to dread. Look for signals about how they’re feeling and, when appropriate, express your own emotions. After that, ask them how they felt about the conversation.

Emotional intelligence can also assist you in resolving problems. That’s where negotiating abilities come in handy. Compromising entails openly discussing the issue and convincing both parties to give up some of their demands.

To have a truly honest dialogue, you must be self-aware and manage your emotions; otherwise, your emotions may take over. You must also listen with empathy and communicate clearly with all parties concerned. Compromise necessitates a high level of emotional intelligence!

Everyone benefits from emotional intelligence. It’s especially vital for project managers, whose profession relies on human interactions and strong relationships. So improve your self-awareness, manage yourself and your many connections, and listen to your team and stakeholders with empathy. Emotional intelligence not only makes work more enjoyable, but it also offers you a competitive advantage and helps you achieve your goals!

Have lunch, according to Anthony C. Mersino’s book Emotional Intelligence for Project Managers: The People Skills You Need to Achieve Outstanding Results. Instead of eating a sandwich at the workplace, take a lunch break with a stakeholder. In a relaxing situation, you’ll get to know them better and discover more about them. It’s an excellent approach to improve your bonds with the people who mean most to you.

Check out my related post: Why should you plan on what to do when projects get stuck?

Interesting reads:


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s