Get Ready for Anything
And You Can Make It Anywhere
Clarence Lang, Penn State’s Dean for the College of the Liberal Arts, interviewed in this month’s PennStater (Oct/Nov, 2019), was asked “…do liberal arts still matter?” His response: “A lot of employers…are interested in people who can think critically, express themselves clearly, be creative, work with others and others who are not like themselves…” Yes.
- Think critically: able to shift perspective, hold competing thoughts in mind while remaining open to both.
- Express themselves clearly: intended message is the one heard, understood and enables people to act
- Be creative: envisions new ideas
- Work with others: relates to and gets along with others
- Work with others not like themselves: relates well with those with whom you may not agree or like
What does all this add up to? Emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence, simply put, is good people
skills, the very skills necessary to communicate effectively and work well with others, especially those “unlike me.”
So what? Why does it matter
This will come as no surprise to those who keep up with research. People with reasonably good people skills (emotional intelligence) do better at work and in personal relationships than those without it. One study, for example, shows that 90% of the top performers at work measured high in emotional intelligence (EQ). People with higher emotional intelligence manage their stress better and, as a result, are happier and healthier.
Now what? What can I do?
What does it take to get “ready for anything?” For starters: accurately sizing up the environment you’re in and what’s needed to have the impact you want—in both your personal and work worlds. That requires situational awareness and accurate self-awareness. It also takes the willingness and ability to change to develop what’s needed. That requires flexibility and interpersonal skill.
Change has always been a factor, only now, it unfolds faster. Those leaning into it—seeing it coming, speculating which skills will be needed and launching into self-development—will not only survive the unfolding change but will discover this to be their secret to success.
This is why emotional intelligence is more predictive of success than IQ. Develop your emotional intelligence and you’re ready for anything.