What are the most crucial Construction Programme Best Practices?


July 26

The role of emotional intelligence in construction project management

Emotional intelligence, otherwise known as emotional quotient or EQ or EI for short, is the ability to understand, use, and manage your own emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathise with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict.

In other words, EI is the ability to understand and manage your own emotions, as well as recognise and influence the emotions of others.

Success within a project team is rooted in emotional intelligence; it helps nurture relationships, promotes engagement, optimises dynamics, and ultimately leads to exceptional results.

Emotional intelligence allows us to empathise with one another, communicate effectively, and be socially aware as well as reflect on ourselves. Our behaviour shapes both personal and professional environments.
As we go through life, we encounter many people in various scenarios that require different approaches from us. Emotional intelligence provides the foundation for understanding others’ motivations and how to respond accordingly. When facing high-pressure situations like conflict, change or challenges – this skill proves invaluable.

The role of emotional intelligence in the construction industry

As construction projects are generally people-intensive, conflict and stress can occur. Negative attitudes can be caused by poor intrapersonal skills as well as compromised mental health of role players. 

Also, construction teams need better knowledge and skills of emotional intelligence (EI) in order to cope with negative emotions and unforeseen problems encountered on the job, which inevitably affect project performance.

The four core competencies of emotional intelligence

1. Self-Awareness

You cannot achieve success without self-awareness. You must recognise your strengths and weaknesses as well as your emotions and their effects on your team. All team leaders, project managers and other members of the management team should be self-aware of their strengths and weaknesses.

2. Self-management

Self-management refers to the ability to manage your emotions, particularly in stressful situations, and maintain a positive outlook despite setbacks. Leaders with poor self-management tend to react and have a hard time controlling their impulses, particularly in stressful situations.

3. Social awareness

Aside from understanding and managing your own emotions, you should also know how to read the room. Social awareness refers to your ability to recognise others’ emotions and the dynamics within your organisation.

4. Relationship Management

Managing relationships involves influencing, coaching, mentoring, and resolving conflict effectively.

It is the leaders who set the tone of the organisation. If they lack emotional intelligence, it could result in lower employee engagement and a higher turnover rate.

The four core competencies of emotional intelligence

That being said, in the construction industry, emotional intelligence plays a crucial role alongside other important skills such as teamwork, communication, and interpersonal skills.

Considering the construction sector, EI facilitates success. It has a positive impact on construction projects, allowing for successful completion. By fostering strong relationships between team members, a project manager with good EI will be able to complete projects with the full support of their team.

The creation of strong links amongst team members fosters collaboration, contributing towards successful performance. Apart from devoting time to deepening bonds in the team, construction managers can also benefit from EI by comprehending the personalities and behaviours of other members.

Human factors are the driving force of any organisation and the successful execution of construction projects is largely dependent on the EI competencies of the project team and subordinates.

Also, employees tend to seek support and empathy from their managers, so managers have the potential to influence their employees’ emotions and attitudes. Instead of promoting negativity and anxiety, which results in poor performance, they should promote enthusiasm and positivity and enhance performance.

How emotional intelligence benefits employees in the construction industry

Emotional intelligence will also allow employees to:

  • Learn more about who they are and what motivates them both on and off the job.
  • learn to channel emotions in a way that is constructive and beneficial to their work, and thus find greater value in what they do.
  •  Acquire a deeper understanding of their emotional capacities.

Implement programs to improve emotional intelligence and boost project success

In order for a team to succeed, emotional intelligence must be understood and implemented. Through this, leaders and employees can establish long-term relationships, resulting in greater engagement, effective team dynamics, and, ultimately, exceptional project outcomes.

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