Role of Emotional Intelligence in Entrepreneurship

Role of Emotional Intelligence in Entrepreneurship

What's Emotional Intelligence? Described as a concept that involves the ability, capacity, skill, or self-perceived ability, to identify, assess, and manage the emotions of one’s self, others, and groups.

Emotions affect our behavior and also hold the power to influence the way we think. Referred to as Emotional Quotient (EQ) and Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EIQ). Emotional intelligence can be described as one being aware of the emotions of one's self and that of others and using them to guide behavior.

Emotional Intelligence

Why is Emotional Intelligence More Important Than Intelligence?

Importance of Emotional Intelligence in Entrepreneurship

Improve Your Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence

There are two sides to Emotional Intelligence, including being able to recognize emotions in ourselves and responding to them. And being aware of the emotions of others, using it as a guide to managing behavior.

There are two sides to emotional intelligence, including being able to recognize emotions in ourselves and responding to them. And being aware of the emotions of others, using it as a guide to manage behavior.

Focusing on the following abilities:

  • To assess how others feel
  • Be conscious of how others feel
  • Connecting with others
  • Identifying emotions
  • Controlling one's own emotions
  • Using emotions to aid social communication

The four main elements of Emotional Intelligence include:

Self Awareness

Self-awareness refers to the ability to recognize one's emotions correctly and be aware of your thoughts and handle your feelings. Keeping track of your emotions and being conscious of how they affect others as well.

Self Management

Most of the time you cannot control what's happening around you in your surroundings but you definitely can control how you respond to it. Self-management is precisely the same; it includes managing stress, motivating oneself, controlling one's impulses, and regulating your thoughts and emotions in various situations.

Social Awareness

Social Awareness includes considering things from another point of view. Understanding different perspectives and standpoints of others. Social awareness plays a great role in society helping one be an empath, collaborate and share information with others. Lastly, it makes the process of communication easy.

Relationship Management

As the name implies, Relationship Management in context with emotional intelligence includes enhancing your listening and speaking skills, conveying your emotions in a non-defensive way, the ability to deliver and accept feedback, resolving conflicts, and being respectful and appreciative of others. Leaving others with a positive impact.

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Why is Emotional Intelligence More Important Than Intelligence?

Having a high level of Intelligence Quotient (IQ) is not the only essential aspect of guiding a leader. EQ is equally critical to having balanced leadership. Studies have shown that emotional intelligence might be even more essential than cognitive intelligence. Asking how you feel could be a key question in understanding and being self-aware. How? We will explain that further.

In relation to Entrepreneurship, There's so much buzz these days with emerging startups, entrepreneurs, and breakthrough products in the market. But what is the meaning of entrepreneurship, anyway?

Entrepreneurship can be described as the ability to build up a business with a new business model or improve an existing one with the aim of building profit or making a social impact.

Being an entrepreneur is cool. But it comes with its own set of challenges. Being one requires you to be more than an innovator, risk-taker, or just a leader. Sure, these do fall into the categories of three qualities that are required for being an entrepreneur, along with the ones listed below:

  • Managing people
  • Having an open and easy-going attitude
  • Following their passion and being highly motivated
  • Having a spark of creativity
  • Being well-rounded and having a passion for the work they do
  • Curious to learn

Let's take a look at the challenges faced by an entrepreneur:

  • Hiring the right people and staff
  • Managing time and budget
  • Making the right decisions
  • Building connections and collaborating with other organizations

But being an entrepreneur is more than that. It also requires emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is so valuable these days that companies consider choosing one's employees based not only on their IQ but also on their EQ test. An article from Forbes has also stated that empathy is the most important leadership skill.

Importance of Emotional Intelligence in Entrepreneurship

Wise Decision-Making

While decision-making, rational thinking is critical. Making the right decisions for anything has a huge impact on your business. Be it investing in something or making changes to the packaging of your product. Keeping your emotions in check, and self-regulating your emotions from time to time will help keep the bar of making irrational and impulsive results low. You act wisely rather than make careless decisions under the influence of your emotions.

Create and Improve Relationships With Empathy

Empathy is the ability to put yourself in another person's position and see and feel from their point of view. Empathy makes a person better listener, and creates better connections and relationships with others. You practice sharing how you feel and based on being aware of others' emotions you also understand the power dynamics that influence the social dynamics in different situations. You learn to respect other people's experiences and respond appropriately.

Empathy helps people to be seen and acknowledges their presence. This helps your employees to develop and also gain their loyalty and respect. Increased empathy levels also mean better health and quality of life with reduced stress. Other important soft skills such as interpersonal awareness, self-esteem, resiliency, stress management, and motivation all fall under emotional intelligence.

Diffuse Conflicts

Arguments may occur when differences in opinions may arise, things might take a quick turn when things turn heated and neither is ready to understand the importance of being aware of the other person's feelings. Turning it into a conflict that makes the surroundings stressful. One learns to be able to handle distressing emotions effectively by adapting to situations and practicing flexibility. Handling communication tactically and effectively managing conflict helps maintain harmony.

Effective Communication

Communication is important in any relationship. It involves the encoding and decoding of the message. Communicating does not only involve the message, but also the way you say it and decode it. Technology has made the process of communication so much easier now. It only takes seconds for you to deliver your message to the other person exactly the way that you want it.

Proper and effective communication is a very important part of Entrepreneurship. In a business setting, it can make or break a deal. Communicating consists of both verbal and non-verbal communication. A higher level of EQ makes you good at reading the body language of a person, making you better at non-verbal communication and working in group environments better.

By gaining a sense of self-control, you can communicate clearly rather than letting your message be clouded by your emotions and respond to a situation in a calm, measured, and reflective manner. You can control your reactions. You are confident and communicate your thoughts with clarity and with effect while communicating. Not only that, but you allow yourself to communicate better, you tune into other people and notice them. EI strengthens your communication skills.

Your employees are the most valuable assets to your company. So, you have to be careful with how you connect with people and understand them. With a higher EQ, you can build stronger relationships at work, and create environments that are best for your employees. Making them feel valued and appreciated.  When you are critically aware of their emotions, you can better manage them, Change the magnitude of the efficiency of your employees' performance, predict their job performance as well as retain them.

Establishing a Clear Vision

Leadership requires you to have a clear vision and be able to communicate it continuously and creatively. It's important to look at how your employees feel about certain goals and challenges in your team. It helps you read and manage the energy in the room and better understand how to channel it.

With Emotional resilience learn to bounce back at the challenges, crises, failures, setbacks, or difficult situations thrown at them which happens more than often in the business environment. Entrepreneurs adapt to them in a positive manner. With higher emotional intelligence comes confidence, positivity, and stability for a leader to bring the organizational vision into the light and turn it into reality.

Inspire, Motivate and Tackle Self-Doubts

EQ teaches you how to bounce back, which leads to a better flow of emotions between your rational and emotional brain. Allowing the rational brain to understand the emotions better. Rather than acting impulsively and preventing you from drowning in them. It transforms poor experiences into great ones rather than just assuming the worst-case scenario. You become more introspective.

Practicing emotional intelligence makes one aware of one's own strengths and weaknesses, which is beneficial to tackling self-doubts that come your way. You are intrinsically motivated and driven by passion which makes you action-oriented, and committed to what you do and enables you to take initiative. Emotional intelligence is important for one to be able to achieve new goals and better ways of learning to do things.

Improves Social Skills

Social skills are a huge part of being an entrepreneur. Collaborating with other people or organizations with whom your goals align requires social skills. Being able to persuade others and coordinate and cooperate with others to collaborate with other organizations working towards similar goals. Guessing social cues, taking initiative, and negotiating are some significant skills that are required for you as an entrepreneur to thrive.

Team building

With a high level of EQ, you become proactive and take the initiative to manage those around you, becoming well aware of their emotions. People want to feel valued and appreciated. As an entrepreneur with high emotional intelligence. You not only perform better but also build a cohesive team that enables problem-solving, and creates a positive environment with empathy. And direct the team towards working on the main objective of the group.

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Trust is considered an important factor in any relationship. Building good relations and trust with clients and employees is a key to success and an effective team.

Improve Your Emotional Intelligence

Talk About How You Really Feel

Make it a practice to connect with your emotions. Being vulnerable takes courage. Talking about your emotions and being self-aware will help you so much rather than just blocking them and not acknowledging your emotions. Talk about your emotions with someone you trust. Remember, there is no just thing as good or bad emotions. Let your mind process what you are feeling. Align your head with your heart. Accepting and acknowledging your emotions can be the first step in practicing emotional intelligence.

Connect Emotionally With Others

When someone is talking, actively listen to them. Be present and observe their body language and gestures and read the non-verbal cues. A professional surrounding does not mean there shouldn't be an informal conversation, if so, create the space for non-professional dialogue to flow. Conversations around non-professional matters will help you connect and understand the other person better. Respect the emotions of others, offer new perspectives to them, and give them where necessary. Not everyone can understand emotions naturally but emotional intelligence can be practiced and put to use.

Use Your Team's Feedback

Let your colleagues all chime in when you understand what they are saying. You can better understand the problems existing in your organization and find a way to change them, which in turn makes room for everyone to grow. Conducting feedback sessions can be a great tool for group improvement.

Other tips to improve emotional intelligence include:

  • Use gratitude practice
  • Tune into your emotions. Monitor and track your own emotions and see how they affect others. You can maintain a journal to help understand how you feel.
  • See how you as a leader are affecting the people that need you to guide and direct them
  • You can make space for emotional intelligence to grow by surrounding yourself with people who have a positive outlook on life and are willing to support you
  • Try listening to the problems of the people, give regard to their feelings and try to look at what's causing them
  • Practice empathy by accepting and being respectful toward the feelings of others
  • Create a positive atmosphere in your office spaces where everyone's opinions are welcomed. Which will help the members be proactive and innovative.


Success is not just based on measuring one's IQ, it also involves the essential elements of one's behavior and character. Emotional intelligence has the power to encourage entrepreneurs to do better and redefine what entrepreneurship means. These practices are sure difficult to put into practice but can be induced in our day-to-day activities in an organization.

Reviewing the outcome of practicing emotional intelligence, one will realize that we can create entrepreneurs that are better leaders, working in fast-paced environments that can effectively manage their teams as they have their teammates have their emotions in check with what they do. They learn to manage conflict, change and create space for collaboration and connection. Remember emotions hold the power to move.


What do IQ, EQ, and EIQ stand for?

IQ stands for Intelligence Quotient; EQ stands for Emotional Quotient and EIQ stands for Emotional Intelligence Quotient.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional Intelligence can be described as one being aware of the emotions of one's self and that of others and using them to guide behavior.

What is Entrepreneurship?

Entrepreneurship can be described as the ability to build up a business with a new business model or improve an existing one with the aim of building profit or making a social impact.

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