What type of leader would you want to be if you were building a team of real estate agents or a support staff within your real estate firm? A brilliant visionary who inspires everyone to be great ? A dogmatic tyrant who bludgeons everyone into doing things their way and their way only? A likable leader who is off the charts with emotional intelligence?
Talent Smart research firm collected data from over one million workers about qualities they preferred in a leader. The qualities that outranked fixed, innate characteristics such as intelligence, attractiveness, extroversion were qualities such as approachability, humility and positivity. These qualities are characteristics of emotional intelligence; emotionally intelligent leaders are likable leaders.
If you choose to be an emotionally intelligent, likable leader, concentrate on these 10 key behaviors/attitudes:
- Form personal connections with people. Even in crowded situations, this leader applies the MMFI rule to whoever they are with: Make Me Feel Important. This person knows there’s a human being in front of them, not a job position, not a functionary…a human being.
- Be approachable. Know that everyone is valuable and approach them that way. Everyone, regardless of job, rank, or ability is worth that leaders time and attention.
- Be humble. This person knows she/he isn’t better than anyone just because he/she is in a leadership position. This person sees their leadership position as something that brings them additional accountability.
- Be positive. Rather than having to do things, this person gets to do things. Even in difficult situations, this person emanates enthusiasm, confidence and hopefulness for a better future.
- Be even-keeled. This person takes things in stride. This person relishes success without letting it go to their head. This person acknowledges failure without getting mired or lost in it. This person learns from both failure and success and then moves on.
- Be generous. The person is generous with what and whom she/he knows. This person is generous with resources and contacts. This person wants everyone to do well.
- Demonstrate integrity. The person knows that actions speak louder than words. This person inspires trust and admiration through his/her actions every day.
- Learn to read people. This person knows that non-verbal communication is as, if not more important than verbal communication. Take the time and attention to hear and see facial expressions, body language, voice tone. Develop high social awareness.
- Appreciate potential. See the best in others. Illicit their talents. Give them opportunities to develop those talents.
- Have substance. This person knows the importance of sharing her/his knowledge and expertise with others. As Daniel Quinn says, “Charisma only gets people’s attention. Once you have their attention, you have to have something to tell them.”
Having emotional intelligence and likability are not automatic birthrights. These are acquirable skills that need development and practice. Be aware of people who have these skills. Watch them. Study them. Copy the skills that work for you and then adapt them to fit your style.