Is emotional intelligence vital to successful coaching? Empathically, YES.
First, let’s define. Emotional intelligence is the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically.
The way we interact with and focus on people in the workplace is changing. As the next generation enters the workforce, leaders will have to lead very differently. That will require a completely different skill set and a great deal of emotional agility.
Emotional intelligence is directly correlated with and an essential component of leadership and professional coaching. It has been stated that EI is where the heart and head, feelings and thoughts meet. Emotions impact every aspect of our lives. All choices, actions, perceptions, and patterns stem from a person’s emotions. Coaching clients on how their brain functions drive their choices, emotions, and responses enables them to see how those responses influence their perceptions, thoughts, actions, behaviors, and biases.
Workplace challenges, remote work, generational disruptions, and the unknown effect of the pandemic reveal that professional coaching with an emotional intelligence component is going to become more and more important. As statistics reveal that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States affecting over 18% of the population every year and half of those also suffer from some form of depression. Coaches, leaders, and employers alike must gain emotional strength and agility if they are to navigate these difficult times.