By: Missy Jackson, Managing Partner

The success of any organization rises and falls on its leadership. It is critical individuals and teams do all they can to maximize strengths, build-up weaknesses and identify blind-spots. Leaders need to invest in the right priorities while keeping those priorities in the correct order. When that happens leaders can maximize their long-term impact.

The Prioritized Leader framework includes the “Five P’s”, with each having a certain form of currency:

  1. Purpose: The vision to see, articulate and go for a compelling future. The currency is integrity and inspiration.
  2. People: The level of health and productivity we have with our colleagues and connections. The currency is encouragement and accountability.
  3. Pace: Discerning how fast (or slow) the organization needs to move to sustain long-term success, capitalize on opportunities, and preserve capital. The currency is time and energy.
  4. Perception: Choosing a growth mindset, staying open to creative solutions and new ideas. The currency is insight and innovation.
  5. Profit: The effective management, investment and release of an organization’s resources. The currency is dollars and cents.

People: the second priority

The second critical point for defining an organization is to have a healthy, productive culture that cares for, understands and supports its people.  The reverse of that is a toxic environment where people do not feel valued and there is a sense of busyness yet low productivity.  There is a significant cost to the status quo making its way into your organization. It can be the difference of your people being competent, skilled and motivated to do their best work or a wake of lost motivation and a lack of competency.

When organizations value Emotional Quotient, or EQ, as well as IQ, and have aligned your people with a clear purpose, you have the recipe for a thriving, healthy culture that values people and understands why they show up for work each day. Purpose informs relationships.  Relationships make up the culture within your business.

Why talk about EQ and IQ together?

Healthy culture leads to healthy profits. IQ will always be a celebrated aspect of people in an organization as it showcases experience, expertise and overall know-how. There is a need for IQ in the workplace. Yet, when IQ is valued over EQ, toxicity creeps in quickly and productivity tanks. EQ is relational awareness of self and others. When people understand themselves while also understanding what it is like to be on the other side of themselves, you begin to see self-management take place, productivity increase and the foundation of a thriving culture take root.  Successful organizations value EQ as much, if not more, than IQ. One can learn and grow their IQ, but EQ impacts every relationship one has. Whether it be professional or personal, low EQ negatively impacts your business.

When leadership has high EQ, they can foster an environment that brings out the best in others and provides appropriate levels of challenge and invitation.

High challenge and low invitation (stressful)

These companies have created a space of high accountability, yet no sense of community.  People feel undervalued and disconnected. There are high levels of challenge in the work yet a lack of invitation to be part of something beyond themselves.  Working in this type of environment is stressful.

Low challenge and low invitation (boring)

These companies have created a space where people feel not only disconnected, they are motivated to only work on things they personally value rather than what the collective business values or prioritizes.  Those who find themselves under-challenged and lacking in invitation to be part of something more would describe their work setting as boring.

High invitation and low challenge (cozy)

Companies in this quadrant have extremely high invitation to be part of something more but offer little to no challenge. These companies are cozy. There is likely a warm and inviting culture, but productivity is fairly non-existent.

High invitation and high challenge (empowered)

These are the great companies that offer great cultures. When there is high invitation and high challenge, there is inevitably high productivity and authenticity.  There are the ideal companies that people get excited to be part of day-in and day-out.  These companies have empowered their people to be and do their best.

What would it be like if your organization valued EQ as much or more as they do IQ?  What would it be like to be part of an organization where everyone felt empowered?  They were challenged and invited to be part of something each and every day?  How healthy is your organizations culture? If you need help in working through these questions, The Vantage Group can help.

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