How to be a Leader with EQ

Emotional intelligence (also known as emotional quotient or EQ), is essential to improve employee/employer relationships and improve retention, It is the ability to not only understand but manage emotions in productive way and is necessary to lead a team effectively through both good times and bad.  Especially in a remote or blended workforceemotions can be less apparent or more easily misconstrued, making EQ an invaluable quality.  

A leader with EQ is vital to helping employees avoid burnout and support mental health and is essential to retaining and attracting talent. Below we dive into five important qualities of leaders with EQ and how they impact an organization. 



Leaders with a high EQ cultivate strong working relationships with their staff in order to best know how to support them. This means getting to know employees on a personal level in order to understand who theare, what they are managing personally, and how to help them excel. 

A successful working environment requires trust.  If the environment is toxic, employees will not feel able to contribute meaningfully or take the needed risks to advanceFostering a positive environment relies on relationship-oriented leadership. By having regular wellness checks with staff, leaders with high EQ establish a culture of trust and allow employees to feel seen and supported. It also helps employers notice when their staff may need additional support. 



A key trait of leaders with strong EQ is their decision-making tactics. These leaders position themselves to decide, rather than react. Rather than rush into an emotionally spurred decision, they analyze the situation, ask questions and research as needed. Because emotions are inextricably linked with our cognitive system, decision making by nature is not purely rational. What setapart a great leader is their ability to distinguish the rational and the emotional in order to make hard decisions, and in turn make better long term decisions for their team as a whole. 



Leaders with high EQ not only understand when a member of their team is struggling, but they have the social awareness to understand how an issue may impact the business, people, and systems involved. Beyond identifying where the issue lies, leaders with high EQ work with their employees empathetically to help support them and attack problems strategically.  



Leaders with EQ not only ask employees how they are doing but also make the time to listen and prioritize responsesApproaching the concerns of staff with empathy and genuine interest, rather than to “check off a box” makes a difference. Leading with EQ can mean slowing down to work with an employee to resolve an issue, or being patient while helping them learn and develop to achieve a long-term career goal. 



Leaders with high EQ know when they need to reach out to others for help and do not shy away from honesty, even when it’s hard. They admit their mistakes and shortcomings and know when they need guidance from others to pull themselves back up.  

Leaders with strong EQ do not shy away from the hard conversations and are honest about both the good and the bad news


Emotions matter, both in business and in life. As the two are more inextricably linked than ever, integrity, compassion and creativity is required to lead effectively. To instill sense of safety and belonging in their workforce, leaders need a high EQ and dedication to their people. 


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About LaSalle Network

LaSalle Network is a national staffing, recruiting and culture firm with business units that specialize in accounting and finance, administrative, call center, healthcare revenue cycle, human resources, management resources, marketing, sales, supply chain, technology and executive search.

We partner with companies across the country to help find top temporary and direct hire talent and grow their teams.

Our team is here to help you find your next role or find great talent for your team. Don’t hesitate to contact us.


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