Applying Emotional Quotient to Work better with others
01:35 - Differentiate yourself with EQ 05:30 - Ideas for application of EQ 09:50 - Stay simple, stay humble 12:15 - Self awareness leads to success
Have you ever been so angry that you went out of control? Forget colleagues, you almost did not care for the boss either. Do you want to fix this? Then you should explore EQ.
EQ stands for Emotional quotient and we will be exploring it in this podcast. Today we have with us SriVibhav Balaram.
Vibhav is a people's person and he puts himself in your shoes. This is his secret to being a very capable and successful manager. He is the Managing Director and General Manager for Vocera Communications.
EQ begins with self awareness and helps anyone to manage her own self better. From there it extends to social awareness of others at an emotional level and helps you manage relationships with other in much better ways.
Someone who works with authenticity and humility and listens well to others, is already on the path to harnessing the power of EQ.
Vibhav has worked in very senior roles with multinationals like SAP labs, HP and Novell. He then founded a company in the cloud storage space - CloudByte and went on to raise series A and series B fundings of of over 9 million USD as part of his entrpreneurial journey.
Vibhav - Welcome to this Podcast and thanks for being our guest.
Vibhav: (1:10) - thanks for having me Brij.
Vibhav: (1:10) – thanks for having me Brij.
Brij: Vibhav, to me you are the walking demonstration of EQ in action. You are aware of your emotional states and you manage them superbly. And then you take it to the next level and you can sense the emotional states of others well before they blow up into an anger storm and you can manage relationships accordingly.
What would you like to share with us today?
Vibhav 1:35- What I wanted to today was to really talk about how you can differentiate yourself with a higher EQ or emotional quotient – as opposed to IQ or intelligence quotient.
My entire entpreneurial journey where I had to actually raise money for my company and it was very interesting and very much of a learning activity when I had to go out and pitch for somebody to write a check for me.
Everytime you talk to a venture capitalist and he kind of trashes your idea – you have to get up and walk again. Because you are kind of down in the dumps. And well we did around 90 pitches and finally we did land up raising both series a and series b later. The real distringuishing factor is the emotional quotient.
I wanted to talk about these things.
Brij: (2:30) – sounds great Vibhav. THe fact that you had to pitch yourself to venture capitalists several times and you never let it hold you back and if anybody who is going to be looking for jobs things that they have it difficult, it gets no easier and it only gets harder when you are pitching for actual money from people. Is resilience or handling adversity related to EQ in some way?
Vibhav: (2:55) – absolutely. it is so. basically, the person who should be credited with making EQ very popular is a genteleman by the name of Daniel Goleman. So really, Daniel broke it up into 4 parts.
Under these 4 parts he defined 12 competencies.
The first part of it was around Self Awareness. This is more to do with emotional self awareness. How do you respond to different situations from an emotional point of view? When do you get angry? When do you feel happy? When do you feel so passionate that you are not able to talk?
I am sure some of you have experienced this that when you feel very passionate about something, you find it very difficult to express yourself. because you are so close to the thing.
The second part of it is called self management. which is more about adaptability which is resilience – Brij as you said, resilience is a part of adaptability. Emotional self control – so how do you manage to – if you are self aware, how do you try to control yourself – emotionally, mentally.
You are hit with a situation that you know you are going to get angry with (for example) or are going to be sad about. So I would not respond in an effective way. There are also few other things under self management. How achievement oriented one is? Is it a growth mindset or a passive mindset that one has? A fixed mindset as it is called.
Then the 3rd part of emotional intelligence is about social awareness. which includes empathy and organizational awareness. It is very very important to know how the organizational in which you finally enter after your interview process and all that – how that organiation functions? Very few of us actually take the time to understand this.
Then the last part ofcourse is about very important part about relationship management. How you can influence and how you do conflict management? Obviously that is very important because there is bound to be conflict.
That is about the theory!
(5:30) – some points about this that are at more high level.
One thing – very important point – is when you are talking about issues – it is important to separate the individual from the issue. Very often, we develop dislike for an individual because of the opinion they carry. It is very important to understand that these are 2 different things. Actually, understand the opinion, but never disrespect the individual. It is very important. It is very difficult to do. Because we are all emotional animals and we can lose our self control very often.
Then ofcourse there is this whole thing around how do you assert yourself. The Dalai Lama put it very well when he said, ‘It is about muscular compassion’. (laughs) It is actually a very interesting term, I think. What he means is that you need to put your point across forcefully but at the same time be empathic and compassionate to the people to who you are talking to. So talk about your point but it is complement to what I said earlier. Talk about the point. Don’t talk about the individual.
Express your opinion to oppose the point but not the individual.
Brij (7:00) VIbhav you do this very well. I have seen you – time and again – you convey your point not you beause are stating it emphatically but because you are listening. Could you share with our audience the magic in listening well?
VIbhav (7:15) yes! there is phenomenal amount of magic in listening. And to tell you the truth, I was not a great listener earlier in my career. But as I became self aware I realized that I had to listen more and I actually started by saying OK for the next 10 minutes I am not going to say anything. I am just going to listen and observe!
It is about active listening it is not so much about just waiting to say something so have to completely suspend your thinking and your response when you are listening to someone. Just listen and observe! And then you will get ample time to actually respond to it later. Once you have understood. That is probably the way, I developed myself to listen.
Now, it is kind become a habit to listen. In fact, I am often accused at home of listening too closely and (laughs) holding people accountable. That is the listening part and it is actually very pleasurable once you get past the initial need to express your opinion.
Most people have this need to express their opinion because they want to show how smart they are. What they don’t realize is that it never really helps to about how smart you are. Sometimes you land up saying stupid things because you are in a hurry to say and sometimes you may say something irrelevant. It is always better to say something less but something that is meaningful. And if you don’t have something to say, then don’t say it. This is one of the very critical aspects of emotional intelligence and also factor as you take up leadership positions because you know what the leader says carries a lot of weight and it is important that there is no lose talking at that point in time.
Brij (9:25) – Vibhav i have seen that when you are young and impressionable then many times you are very impressed by people who can talk big or who can talk impressively. On one side, is this showmanship and big talk and on the other side there is humbleness. What would you chose and why?
VIbhav (9:50) – it is also personality driven. To me, I find it more comfortable to be humble. Simply because it lets the social awareness part and the relationship part works very well when you are humble.
Going back to those 2 issues – when you are humble you kind of observe more of what is going on around you and that is a very important part of social awareness. Making sure that you are fully aware of what is going on and what that the dynamics are. For example, observing people talking, their body language can happen more if you are humble and open.
When you are humble then you are also open to new ideas. very often you hear a great idea and you can build on it, if you are humble. If you are arrogant you probably want to dismiss the idea saying, ‘Oh! my idea is better!’
Brij (10:55) – as you were talking about this, I was thinking that maybe humbleness also gives you more stamina. Because you don’t have to waste your energy in posturing. Which means if you fall flat at some time, because you have more stamina – maybe it is easier to get up and have that growth mindset a little bit easier if you have humbleness? Do you see any relationship?
VIbhav (11:20) – Absolutely! absolutely! It gives you a lot more stamina and also it gives you emotional strength. Exactly what you are saying. It gives you the stregth to take setbacks easier. I think secret is really everything starts from self awareness. When you are hit with an adverse situation, the best way to look at it is, saying what is bothering me about this situation? What is it that I am feeling about this? Then let me list it down and say, OK! THis kind of situation generates this kind of emotions in me. That self awareness. once you get more and more comfortable with your emotions and then you are able to manage your emotions – the self management part – because as you become more aware, you tend to manage it. Then, your need for strutting around goes away.
Brij (12:15) Actually it makes a lot of sense. YOu just have to accept yourself and sometimes we feel that we have to compensate by being aggressive because we feel something is lacking. if we accept whatever it is, good or bad, then we don’t have to compensate so hard maybe. When we are not busy compensating or trying to be soemthing that we are not, then automatially our energies are directed to being more in the present moment and being aware of what the others are thinking and feeling.
Vibhav (12:45) – Yes. It is important to build (this). Self awareness is important in many other ways also. It is important to build on the things one is good at. Someone might be very good at design. Object oriented design. (She) may not be the greatest presenter or selling person. It is much better to be the quiet designer rather than try to become one of those go-getting salespeople. That personality is different.
Me being who I am – I started to get more and comfortable with the fact that I am by nature an introvert. I like being quiet. Talk only when there is a need to talk. And you just have to get comfortable with it and not be bothered. The most difficult part is to ensure that other people strutting around, should not bother you. Because they are getting the press coverage, they are putting up like 20 different posts on linkedIn – are you going to feel like, ‘Oh God! This guy is putting up 20. I should be doing atleast 1’. YOu will land up putting up something absolutely ridiculous. But if you have something really important to say, great! put it up. But not related to someone else.
Brij (14:27) Right!! The key to self awareness and after that self control is being aware of yourself. It is as simple as that. Some times you need to give yourself time to be come self aware in the heat of the moment. Try this simple experiment next time you are in an emotional storm. Simply count upto 10 without reacting on the outside. See what happens?
EQ is magical and the results will help you go forward in working smoothly with others. So thank you very much Vibhav, it has been wonderful speaking to you and hearing you share your insights.
Vibhav (15:05) thank you so much. I enjoyed this as much as you did. in fact, more! THank you for giving me the opportunity to do this.
Brij: that was Vibhav in conversation with us about emotional quotient. If you like this podcast, do subscribe to our weekly episodes.