During our ancestors’ time, there was no efficient way to interact with one another except face-to-face. But within the past century, affordable, efficient means of communicating over great distances have become available. And, within our lifetimes, we pay thoughtful, skill-focused attention to human relationship aspects of doing business. Why is this so?
Due to globalization, more business transactions are operating out of home bases that are distant from each other. These people working for these corporations are born, raised, educated, and employed in different national and ethnic cultures.
Knowledge-based business is increasing too. The creation, transmission and application of knowledge are complex, lengthy and creative processes that involve the intellects of humans, who have on-going cooperative relationship with each other.
Managers and employees of today are expected to do value-enhancing work in collaboration with mere acquaintances. Yet, the nature of their work requires a meeting of the minds that intends to accomplish something far more complex.
One of the key skills for building critical business relationships is thinking strategically about who is worth knowing. Strategic relationship building means identifying a small set of people who are in powerful positions and whose help could advance business interests.
Emotional Intelligence (EI) therefore is critical for leaders in the business. EI is far more important for the success of people in the upper levels of any organization, compared to technical skills or purely cognitive abilities.
Reuven Bar-On in 1988 defined EI, in his doctoral dissertation as “an array of emotional and social knowledge and abilities that influence one’s overall capacity to cope with environmental demands”.
What we can do is think about learned skills useful in interacting with others who have feelings.
Business gets done through people. Managers who fail to make time to build relationships have limited success. They fail to understand the full meaning of getting work done through people.
Practice your communication skills every chance you get it will set you apart.