Spotlight on Leadership: Social Awareness and Relationship Management

spotlight-on-leadershipThe Leadership Toolkit is designed to provide you with tools to enhance the leadership qualities you already possess, while cultivating new strengths through education and training. Included in the toolkit are job aids, video/audio podcasts, and suggested readings.  These resources will assist your efforts in being a better manager and leader and are available whenever you need them.

This month’s Leadership Toolkit featured job aid looks at two aspects of the Emotional Intelligence competency: Social Awareness and Relationship Management. Emotional Intelligence is a component of the Build Trust quadrant of the UF Leadership Competency Model.

Social awareness is an essential leadership skill and critical to building healthy relationships in the workplace. A prerequisite to developing social awareness is empathy.  When you empathize, you are able to understand a situation from another person’s perspective—you place yourself in their shoes and feel what they are feeling. Leaders who can empathize are often known for their people skills, have profound influence, are good communicators and have a high capacity for managing the workplace culture. This helps them become more socially aware, which makes them excellent conflict managers capable of handling difficult people and tense situations with tact and diplomacy.

Empathic leaders build bridges to others so that working relationships are rooted in trust and transparency. A healthy workplace environment is essential for achieving goals, and a leader who develops and practices empathy will be able to nurture the relationships that promote a rich and productive climate for employees to give their best.

Visit the Leadership Toolkit to access the Social Competency and Relationship Management job aid.