Decision Making and Emotional Intelligence (EQ)

Decision making: One of 15 elements of emotional intelligence. When making a decision do you use the appropriate amount of emotion?

The following three elements make up the Decision Making Composite:

  1. Problem Solving: understanding your emotions when in decision making mode
  2. Reality Testing: objective understanding and use of facts, intuition and principles
  3. Impulse Control: knowing when to react because of emotion in an effort to make the best decision

Have you ever been in a situation when a subordinate or child was given specific direction only to find out later an opposite direction was taken? This happens in the workplace more than we would like to think. Sometimes the subordinate is being active in their resistance and at other times this occurs passively. Both can cause the boss a great amount of stress. How would you respond? How do you use the above-mentioned elements of decision making?

  1. Do you confront the subordinate and fly off the handle?
  2. Do you meet with the employee and seek to understand their situation?
  3. When is it appropriate to use either of these two options?
  4. Is this a recurring problem?

Case Study

In a recent situation I chose to show an appropriate amount of anger with the subordinate. Why would I do that? Why would you? This decision was deliberate. I was angry but I also knew that too much anger would be inappropriate and too little would not have the impact necessary to make my point. I used all three of the elements that make up the composite of decision making: problem solving, reality testing and impulse control. The most important point I would like to make here is I made a choice. I chose to demonstrate an appropriate level of anger.

Inappropriate levels of this composite show up as:

  1. Conflict or problem avoidant
  2. Unreliable
  3. Untrustworthy
  4. Dishonest
  5. Impractical
  6. Explosive
  7. Quick to anger or short fused
  8. Overuse of this composite shows up as:
  9. Inconsistency in handling problems
  10. Passive/aggressive behavior
  11. An unwillingness to confront subjective actions
  12. Lack of trust with subordinates
  13. Emotionally detached
  14. Withdrawn

What situation are you facing today? Do you have someone you can trust to help you process this problem? For more on emotional intelligence click here.

About the author: Creed is an accomplished leader and Professional Certified Coach motivated by a passionate drive to help individuals and organizations reclaim their clarity for personal achievement and organizational effectiveness.

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