Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence (EI), are a set of skills said to contribute to the accurate evaluation and expression of emotion both in one’s self and in others; the effective regulation of emotion in self and others, and the use of feelings to motivate, plan and succeed in one’s life ( Salovey, P., Mayer, J., 1990). Exercising emotional intelligence entails the understanding of the human psyche and its effect on the way people act (Meyer, 2015).


When a person with high EI responds to a situation, his /her ability to perceive emotions and act effectively on them is what separates the successful from the average (Bradberry, 2014). Many experts now believe EI to be more important than IQ and is undoubtedly a better predictor of success, quality of relationships and general happiness (Scuderi, 2016). EI can be broken down into four main skills according to the EI model developed by Mayer and Salovey in the 1990’s (Cenere, P., Gill, R., Lawson, C., Lewis, M., 2015):

  • Recognise – being able to accurately identify and understand the emotions of ourselves and others.
  • Facilitating thought: The ability to generate, use or feel emotions as necessary to communicate feelings or employ them in other cognitive processes
Diagram of emotional intelligence

Diagram of emotional intelligence

  • Understand: Understanding the cause of emotions and how emotions change
  • Manage: The ability to be open to emotion, and to modulate them in oneself and others so as to promote personal understanding and growth

Emotions can influence the way we think, how we act and what we do. A person who is angry or in a negative mood tends to focus on undesirable details and mistakes whereas a person in a good mood tends to be able to produce more innovative ideas and solutions (Cenere, P., etc. 2015). Being able to recognise which state of mind is best for a certain situation is an imperative communication skill (Choi, J., Chung, G., Sung, S., Butt, A., Soliman, M., Chang, J., 2015).


Bradberry, T. 2014, Emotional Intelligence – EQ, [online]. Available at: http://www.forbes.com/sites/travisbradberry/2014/01/09/emotional-intelligence/#683107483ecb

Cenere, P., Gill, R., Lawson, C., Lewis, M. 2015, Communication Skills for Business Professionals, Cambridge University Press, Melbourne, Vic. Pp 208-210

Choi, J., Chung, G., Sung, S., Butt, A., Soliman, M., Chang, J. 2015, Does Emotional Intelligence Matter in Interpersonal Processes? The Mediating Role of Emotion Management, [online]. Available at: http://eds.b.ebscohost.com/eds/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=58149a1b-ce11-4e9b-bcc9-6c2e71730805%40sessionmgr120&vid=2&hid=114

Craemer, M. 2014, Emotional Intelligence is Vital to Workplace Success, [online]. Available at: https://www.washington.edu/admin/hr/pod/leaders/orgdev/alliance/articles/EQ-_Craemer.pdf

Marchant, J. 2013, Why Emotional Intelligence is Important in the Workplace, [online]. Available at: http://www.emotionalintelligenceatwork.com/resources/why-emotional-intelligence-is-important-in-the-workplace/

Meyer, C. 2015, Why Emotionally Intelligent Are More Successful, [online]. Available at: http://www.fastcompany.com/3047455/hit-the-ground-running/why-emotionally-intelligent-people-are-more-successful

Salovey, P., Mayer, J. 1990, Emotional Intelligence, [online]. Available at: http://www.unh.edu/emotional_intelligence/EIAssets/-EmotionalIntelligenceProper/EI1990%20Emotional%20Intelligence.pdf

Scuderi, R. 2016, The Importance of Emotional Intelligence, [online]. Available at: http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/emotional-intelligence-why-important.html

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