At book presentation, panelists interrogate emotional intelligence
Launched recently with the aim of equipping the reader, The Magic of Emotional Intelligence is one book that helps you to unlearn and manage negative emotions as well as learn and manage positive emotions as you build more rewarding personal and professional relationship with the people most important to your success.
The book is aimed at enabling corporate organisations; governments and individuals reach their peak performance.
According to speakers at the book launch, emotional intelligence (otherwise known as emotional quotient or EQ) is the ability to understand, use and manage your own emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathise with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict.
Relating an experience of years back, Abiola Salami ‘Champ’, author of the book, revealed how emotional intelligence made way for him.
He said that from his research, he discovered that 86 per cent of people believe that when a colleague does not respect their emotions, it affects their perception of that person’s professionalism.
The American business magnate, Warren Buffett, said, “If you cannot control your emotions, you cannot control your money.”
The renowned political economist, Professor Pat Utomi, acknowledged that the work is dear to his heart.
According to him, “when Salami was talking, I was thinking to myself, I keep talking about building institutions and how important they are but at a personal level, emotional intelligence is so important that leadership failure, which is a major part of our challenge, comes largely from the fact that enough people have not educated themselves about it.”
He said the most miserable people in the world live in Nigeria, because they can’t talk to one another intelligently on how they can collaborate to increase how we produce so we all can be happy. A lot of people fail to become good managers because thy fail to become emotionally intelligent.”
CEO of Futursoft Nkemdilim Begho simply described emotionally intelligent people as those who seem to have their way and get along with everyone. This is what emotional intelligence is, people who understand how to connect with others and how to relate with them.
She continued that connecting with people is so important because that is really the intelligence of humanity, being able to connect with other people, through empathy, listening, awareness, understanding, and more.
Begho, the Regional Director for International Air Transport Association (IATA), air transport and aviation connects the world in a way you can’t even imagine and “I have to connect with people on how aviation is important and the value.
“Imagine the minister of transport of the country whose bag has not arrived and then IATA comes over to have a conversation with them, what do you think will happen first? He is going to vent and we can connect because he has released his emotions. Emotions are all valid whether negative or positive but how we deal with them is what matters most.”
Supervising editor, CNN Africa, Stephanie Busari, didn’t differ much on the definition, as she said with emotional intelligence, you have to make a conscious effort, with some people, its effortless. “Sometimes, I could be a little bit heated and short tempered, but it is about managing emotions and turning it around. Its always about thinking about that moment that you are in, how can I get the best out come out of the situation, its about writing that email and deleting it without sending.”
Busari said, “as a woman in a position of authority, managing men with egos, who do not take lightly to women leaders, is not easy, but I had to learn a lot of techniques. I would say to myself, if I respond the way I want to, it will escalate but its not always about the way you want to respond but how you can get the best out of every situation.”
Dayo Israel, member, Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), said the challenge of emotional intelligence is dealing with people of different temperaments.
Israel said as a politician, “you need emotional intelligence to mobilise voters and supporters, because people expect that you should be able to solve their problems.
“Let them understand you can’t give them that N50,000 they are requesting for but you can give N2,000 or N5,000 that can help them buy recharge card and make other calls to raise more money, and they will leave you happier than they came without getting what they wanted. That is where emotional intelligence plays a key role.”
Israel added that it is putting yourselves in their shoes understanding their pain and then you can tell them, “I really feel your pain and I know what you are going through.”
He said, “being emotionally intelligent doesn’t make you a fool. It only means that you are able to pass your message in a way that people will feel comfortable around you. There is nothing that you can achieve on greatness without people.”
Other participants include, the CEO of Media Solutions, Khadijah Lamidi and co-founder V&R Partners Ltd, Dr Ibiene Ogolo.