Why Emotional Intelligence is an Important Skill for Industry 4.0? And How FIIB is Preparing its Students for It?

Aspiring young leaders require emotional maturity now more than ever to coach teams, manage stress, deliver feedback, and collaborate with others. To prepare our students for the 21st century world corporate challenges and help them create positive energy and enthusiasm to foster and drive meaningful change, we are further deepening the much-needed Emotional Intelligence element in our curriculum. Ms. Shuchi Dikshit, Assistant Professor – HR

As a Business School nurturing young leaders-managers, FIIB genuinely believes that leaders should be able to balance and positively leverage their own emotions, as well as the emotions of those around them. Knowing that Emotional Quotient – also known as EQ – has been surveyed as the strongest predictor of a leader’s performance by EQ Provider TalentSmart, our students are being taught Emotional Intelligence (EI) as the main subject in their first-term itself so as to help them consciously build the required skills to become effective leaders. 

Below is the excerpt of the interview session with Prof. Shuchi Dixit, Area Chair (OB & HR) at FIIB. 

Why did FIIB decide to include this in the curriculum? 

Emotional Intelligence is a necessity for individual success. It helps us reflect on self-management at the core and directs us to manage our emotions, which are the most complex aspect of human relationships. Whether you join an MNC, or start your own business, you will always be dealing with people. But to better understand how to interact with the others, we first need to understand our own impact on them which comes only from self-awareness.

Emotional intelligence (EI) forms the juncture at which cognition and emotions meet. Real world problem solving is done in a complex maze of social and human factors in which decisions are arrived upon with insufficient data while still hoping that desired outcomes can be achieved. They are not run like a scientific experiment in which a controlled environment can be created. So the key ingredient in any  formula of success is the human factor.

The challenges that lie ahead of us are not always predictable and so it’s difficult to assess what kind of training would prepare us for it. But what we can certainly prepare students for is to deal with these uncertainties and be able to respond to them well. EI matters, it facilitates our capacity for resilience, motivation, empathy, reasoning, stress management, communication, and our ability to read and navigate a plethora of social situations and conflicts.

Why Emotional Intelligence Should Matter for Students?

Emphasizing Emotional Intelligence in the curriculum directly contributes to the Program Learning Outcomes meant for the students. Following are some of the key aspects that students build upon automatically in such a curriculum:

  • Effective communication
  • Social awareness
  • Building cohesive teams
  • Critical thinking and creativity
  • Making ethically inclined decisions

Though a higher EQ is not necessarily spelt out as a requirement for any particular job but research shows that it becomes increasingly important for the higher level job roles and in fetching higher salaries as well.

The World Economic Forum has identified Emotional Intelligence as one of the top skills for Industry 4.0. The most reputed B-Schools in the world like Harvard and Stanford have workshop-oriented courses on interpersonal dynamics which are EQ centric. 

Companies are run by employees and empires are built by people and it is emotions that drive people. EQ is required to drive the best of the ideas and make them impactful in any organization. EI is what makes workplaces more desirable. 

How is FIIB making young leaders-managers emotionally-adept? 

The methodology adopted is not in the form of lectures but sharing experiences. For this purpose a safe environment needs to be created which is built upon trust. The instructor starts by quoting their own everyday life experiences and reflects upon the incidents which show lack of self-awareness and emotional hijacking. This encourages students to also share their own experiences and accept the emotions and understand the roots of it.For every interaction, students work on self-awareness through SWOT analysis, identifying emotional triggers, goal setting, self-motivation which would help them to not just retrospect but also reflect on the reasons. The objective is to make the participants aware of their emotions and understand the reasons. This awareness gives them better control of themselves and a capacity to respond to the environment in an effective manner.