I was talking with a seasoned, well-respected executive about the importance of EQ in leadership when he shared the following story:
We were in a meeting with executives discussing the importance of understanding how to become aware of the intangible aspects of leading others. Someone posed the question: "What is something that you do nonverbally to enhance your leadership when meeting with others?"
The answer from another seasoned executive was incredibly telling. He replied, "I always make sure that my chair is positioned higher than the other person's chair."
When I heard this story I could only respond, "REALLY?!"
The sad truth is that many leaders buy into this positional leadership strategy for their teams. Instead of building a philosophy of connection and influence, they subscribe to the archaic and ineffective method of dictatorial leadership.
While there is ample study and overwhelming proof of the effectiveness of EQ driven leadership, some simply refuse to invest the time, energy and effort in learning this skill. Leaders who "make sure that their chair is higher than the other person's chair" are generally leading from insecurity. Conversely, those who see leadership as the opportunity to serve others are those who make a lasting impact.
Take a minute and check your EQ concerning those you lead. How high do you have your chair? When we choose to see our leadership as a means to connect and influence the lives of others, we will make a difference.