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Members receive 'emotional' advice at Innovation You

Monday, June 29, 2015  
Posted by: Barbara Francella
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"You may wonder why the person with less know-how than you seems to be getting all the opportunities. It often has to do with the ability to understand emotion, perceive emotion and regulate emotion," Tara Jaye Frank, vice president of multicultural strategy for Hallmark Cards Inc., told participants during the NEW Innovation You webinar "Emotional Intelligence," June 24, 2015.

Frank shared her insights on developing emotional intelligence, or understanding the relationships between you, yourself and others; strengthening relationships; and communicating in an evolving work environment. "It used to be the most technically adept, most experienced, the people with the highest intellectual 'horsepower' emerged as the strongest leaders," Frank said. "In an increasingly socially and relationally complex world, this is no longer the case — and it hasn't been for quite a while."

The Hallmark Cards executive emphasized the importance of cognitive empathy, "the ability to understand how something or someone works." Applying cognitive empathy to an organization may involve considering how decisions get made. "With individuals, you will want to know how they like you to communicate with them."

Empathetic concern, being able to demonstrate support for another person, enables risk-taking, Frank added. "It also does a great job of demonstrating trustworthiness."

Emotional empathy is about being in the moment. "Do you understand how someone is feeling instant to instant?" Frank asked. Even the ability to recognize someone's need for a bio break — or a snack — allows you to be truly present with that person.

"Really strong leaders have very high [emotional quotients]," Frank said, noting that compassion, building trust, knowing what matters to other people – and even intuition – "are the things that enable you to influence other people."

Knowing the difference between your authentic self and your behaviors, both productive and unproductive, serves to define yourself, how you behave with others and how you lead. "We are not our every behavior, and I think we need to recognize that," Frank said. "Sometimes our behaviors need adjusting."

For team-building, "knowing your own personal or professional purpose helps you invest yourself much more intentionally," Frank explained. "Knowing yourself, in and of itself, is a form of empathy."

Understanding clients is critical to organizational success, Frank noted. Look beyond the face value of conversations about finance, consumer considerations or project execution. "When you're dealing with an individual, knowing what their purposes are, underneath what they may say on the surface, really, really matters," she said.

Frank offered a quick recap on emotional intelligence and its effective application: "Know yourself, know others, be your best self, be present and don't assume."

NEW Innovation You is a learning series of six webinars led by industry leaders and career experts. NEW members may view past webinars for free in the NEW Study Hall. Non-members may view webinars for $99 each. Join NEW.

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