EQ Mentorship in One Simple Question.

February 27, 2020

EQ Mentorship in One Simple Question.

May 29, 2023

An MEA alum was trying to apply my two types of mentorship theory to a young, high-po (“potential”) leader, but was frustrated. The alum said to me, “Can you really teach emotional intelligence to someone who doesn’t care about EQ?”

The answer is simple. “Yes.” You can give them books and articles and show them the research. You can also remind them that Daniel Goleman proved that two-thirds of the success of leaders was due to their EQ, while only one-third was due to the combination of IQ and previous experience. You can also try this: ask your young mentee, “What five adjectives would you like co-workers to use when describing you to others when you’re not in the room?

Then, ask a half-dozen to a dozen folks who work with this person to anonymously offer five adjectives that define this high-po leader and compare real-life with aspiration. The words will speak for themselves. “Demanding” is not the same thing as “Decisive” and “Political” is not the same as “Persuasive.”

Once your mentee has woken up to the fact that EQ is another way for describing one’s reputation, tell them you’ll do this same exercise with the same co-workers three and six months from now and see how their adjectives evolve. At this point, you can help your mentee start developing habits and behaviors that reinforce the positive adjectives.

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