Chief Executives are recruited for their business acumen and fired for their lack of emotional intelligence, or so goes a quote in Daniel Goleman’s best-selling book ‘Emotional Intelligence’.
I had a business owner tell me the other day that he felt his role had changed from doing what he loved to be a ‘social worker’.
As a business grows, even in this age of pervasive tech, it naturally accumulates more and more people. As it does it necessarily becomes more and more complex and chaotic. Not necessarily more technically complex, although that can happen, but more and more socially complex. Relationships increase at an exponential rate and along with it the need to manage and nurture those relationships.
It can often be an unconscious desire to reduce the societal complexity that sponsors people to branch out on their own, doing what they love without all the corporate crap that comes with it, only to find themselves with a successful business which naturally gathers more people leaving our successful business owner with the same problem he was running away from originally.
The fact is that growing a business inevitably means growing the number of people that you work with. The technicalities of what the firm does reduces in significance as the way the people are organised and work well together increases.
The required skillset becomes less technical and more people based. As the leader does proportionally less of the work the thing that makes the difference is the way the leader catalyses the creation of value in the team that he leads. It is this change, among others that can make growing and scaling a business so challenging.
It is probably easier to find technically brilliant people to work in the business than great leaders to lead the business. A business owner needs to transition from one to the other as he grows his business. That is why it can be so challenging.
Leadership is a skill set
The good news is that leadership is a set of skills that can be learned. The cornerstone of all leadership and relationship skills is this thing called emotional intelligence. Dr. Martyn Newman believes that this is such an important attribute of any business that it should be valued and found on the balance sheet. In his book ‘Emotional Capitalists’ he describes the ten competencies of emotional intelligence that pertain to leaders.
Through a combination of measurement, appropriate coaching, a desire to improve and hard work it is entirely possible to develop the competencies that will lead to world-class relationship skills and the results that will ensue. Remember, if Chief Executives are recruited for their business acumen and fired for their lack of emotional intelligence then business owners can grow their business through their business or technical acumen and stall because of their lack of emotional intelligence.
If you would like to know more about emotional intelligence and even take the Emotional Capital assessment contact Ian on firstname.lastname@example.org