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Mar112018

« 7. Emotional intelligence for ESTJ managers »

Written by Rachel Green. Director, The Emotional Intelligence Institute. MBTI coach with over 25 years MBTI experience, and author of the new book: "INFJ: What's it like to be one."

Emotional intelligence (or EQ) can vary across the Myers Briggs Personality Types (MBTI). However, before I explain this, it is important to say that there is far more to a person's emotional intelligence or EQ than their MBTI preferences.

Emotional intelligence is an entity all on its own. In other words emotional intelligence and personality are not the same thing.

What I have observed though is that the different MBTI types may find some aspects of emotional intelligence easier than others.

ESTJ means:

  • Extraverted - get their energy from external stimulation, interactions, parties, hobbies, doing things.
  • Sensing - focus on the details and often like them in a linear step-by-step sequence.
  • Thinking - make decisions primarily based on true and false, cause and effect reasoning, "logic".
  • Judging - like closure, follow plans and schedules, set goals. Results orientated.
  • There are four facets to each person's MBTI type: the Dominant (D), the Auxiliary (A), the Tertiary (T) and the Inferior (I). The ESTJ's inferior function is important in regards to emotional intelligence.

    The Inferior is the side least likely to be well developed.

    In the case of an ESTJ, their Inferior is the Feeling preference. This therefore means that some ESTJs may find certain aspects of emotional intelligence challenging to develop.

    Different types have different aspects of emotional intelligence they find harder and easier. However, developing their emotional intelligence is vitality important for each type. Come join with me in this exciting new emotional intelligence coaching package and I will make sure it is personalised to you and your type.

    Emotional intelligence: Do ESTJs annoy people? 

    Do ESTJs rub people up the wrong way? Yes they can.

    When ESTJs are executives, managers, or supervisors this can impact on their employee and stakeholder relationships, and potentially hold back their career development as they can run the risk of "rubbing people up the wrong way".

    The Feeling preference is not about whether a person feels or not. All types feel and have emotions. All types have emotional intelligence and EQ. What the Feeling preference covers is a person's decision-making style.

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    Emotional intelligence: Do ESTJs consider feelings?

    The MBTI asks with regards to this preference, "Does a person have a tendency towards making decisions based on feelings, and the impact on people, i.e. the Feeling preference? Or are they more inclined to look for a rational explanation and make a decision based on logic and cause and effect reasoning, ie. the Thinking preference?

    ESTJs typically rely on rational logic to be the primary guide in their decision making. They look for logical reasons to explain things, including people's behaviour. They may thus fail to understand the significance of emotions that may be driving people's behaviour or dismiss people's emotions as unimportant, irrational or due to a person's over sensitivity.

    However, the ability to reason with emotions is an important part of emotional intelligence and EQ, and is highlighted as such on the Mayer Salovey emotional intelligence model.

    Someone with high levels of emotional intelligence and EQ can accurately read their own and others' emotions and take accurate information about emotions into account when making decisions. They can use emotional knowledge and emotional intelligence to enhance their problem solving skills.

    Want to be able to manage your emotions more productively? Then get our 2 DVD set "How to develop emotional resilience and manage your emotions" and Rachel will show you many ways to do this. Two Extraverts appear with her and she demonstrates techniques with them that may help you too.

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    Is emotional reasoning an ESTJ's weak point?

    My experience with ESTJs is that with their dominant Thinking preference, they may find this difficult.

    They may even consider emotions as irrelevant or unimportant and dismiss emotional intelligence as an airy fairy concept.

    If their dominant Thinking preference is particularly strong, they may not process their own emotions or others effectively and thus may appear to have low emotional intelligence in this emotional intelligence competency.

    It isn't as clear cut as it sounds as ESTJs will differ in their levels of emotional intelligence and EQ but it is a trend I have observed.

    ESTJs can also get stressed when others don't do what they think they ought. If they think there is one right way, then not having people do things the "right" way can be stressful for an ESTJ.

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    ESTJs: Do they have low emotional intelligence at work?

    I'll give you three examples of how this may play out in the workplace

    1. ESTJs are Extraverts - can this affect their emotional intelligence?

    They have a tendency to say their opinions out loud, as they think them, rather than reviewing them first, and they like to be in control. They may thus, pay little attention to how their extraverted communication affects the feelings of others and may upset others quite easily. However, ESTJs may not be aware of the impact they are having especially if they don't consider that the feelings of others actually matter. Indeed, they may judge others' feelings as a weakness.

    Imagine such an ESTJ in a meeting. They could unintentionally upset many people by not being aware of their own and other's emotions and end up with non-productive meetings or people refusing to cooperate with them.

    2. ESTJs make decisions using black and white rational logic.

    ESTJs commonly make their decisions based on black and white rational logic, and may fail to consider the impact of their decisions on others, especially those with a feeling preference.

    In implementing a decision in their team, therefore, they may find that the team does not come on board easily, and may even resent the implementation of the decision made. Workplace productivity may lower as a consequence and conflict increase.

    3. ESTJs are quick to notice errors - can this affect their emotional intelligence?

    The ESTJ has a good eye and ear for detail and may be quick to detect any errors in details, accountability or responsibility, however minor or seemingly unimportant to others. They may then correct these errors out loud and in public, and in front of others. They can be considered sharp or blunt, and certainly straight-forward.

    Is this a sign of high emotional intelligence? Not often, no. When they do this they may unintentionally cause offence and leave people feeling embarrassed, humiliated or stupid. This can cause workplace distrust and ESTJ managers may find their staff no longer tell them what is happening as they try to avoid the criticism and humiliation. No one wants to feel or look stupid in front of their colleagues.

    They may even be critical of people in higher positions than themselves, and win themselves no favours, especially amongst those who may have "retired on the job", or are shirking their responsibilities, or they consider are "not accountable".

    It is situations like these that may result in ESTJs being judged by others to have lower levels of emotional intelligence. in the workplace.

    Taking all this into consideration, here are five tips on emotional intelligence for an ESTJ at work.

    Want to be able to manage your emotions more productively? Then get our 2 DVD set "How to develop emotional resilience and manage your emotions" and Rachel will show you many ways to do this. Two Extraverts appear with her and she demonstrates techniques with them that may help you too.

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    Five tips for ESTJs on developing emotional intelligence at work.

    Different types have different aspects of emotional intelligence they find harder and easier. However, developing their emotional intelligence is vitality important for each type. Come join with me in this exciting new emotional intelligence coaching package and I will make sure it is personalised to you and your type.

    Emotional intelligence ESTJ tip 1 - Pause before criticising.

    When you notice that someone has made an error, resist the inclination to jump in immediately and correct him or her. For example, people may have said that London is 26 miles from somewhere else, and you know it's actually 26.3 miles and wish to correct the error. Instead of doing this consider:

    • How will the people feel if you correct them now? (They may feel worse if you are correcting them publicly in a meeting or in front of others rather than if you are talking to them privately.) They may feel put down, insulted, unheard, belittled, humiliated, embarrassed, misunderstood, peeved, stupid or a similar emotion. Ask yourself "Is this consequence worth it?".
    • Is there a better place or time to correct the information? Does it have to be now?
    • If people may get upset, does it have to be done at all? What are the consequences if the information remains incorrect? By applying higher levels of emotional intelligence you could start to prioritise what to correct and what not to correct. Remember, that not everyone else has the same drive for correctness that you do. 

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    Emotional intelligence ESTJ tip 2 - Consider the emotional impact of what you say.

    One of the competencies of emotional intelligence covered by the Mayer Salovey emotional intelligence model is the ability to manage the emotions of others.

    The way we speak and how we talk with people contributes enormously to the emotional impact we have on people and how we influence their emotions.

    Before you speak to someone therefore, consider the emotional impact of what you are about to say and how you are about to say it.

    An ESTJ can be perceived to be blunt by others. This ESTJ bluntness can offend, hurt or upset others.

    Self-reflection may help you to be less blunt. Self-reflection is typical of someone with high levels of emotional intelligence.

    Thus, considering carefully the emotional impact of what you say and how you say it could be a good step forward in developing your emotional intelligence even more.

    For example, I once said to an ESTJ that I was concerned that a person's name may have been missed off a list we were collating together. The blunt reply I got back was, "They are on the list, look again". As I heard, "They are on the list, look again", I also heard "stupid" in brackets at the end.

    Any ESTJ reading this may think that this is clear communication. It certainly is clear. What it fails to do is to take into account the emotional impact that this blunt communication has on the receiver.

    If an ESTJ wishes to develop their emotional intelligence further they can be helped by realising that it is information PLUS emotional engagement that leads to the most successful communication, and not just information on its own. Someone with high levels of emotional intelligence would factor this into their decision making.

    Another way of saying the same thing which does take into account the feeling and emotions of the receiver is "Thanks for checking Rachel, I've looked at the list for you and found the people on the second page. They were hard to see as they were right next to the heading, I've moved them further down so they are easier to see. Good we checked."

    This involves more words but achieves a far better emotional outcome.

    Want to be able to manage your emotions more productively? Then get our 2 DVD set "How to develop emotional resilience and manage your emotions" and Rachel will show you many ways to do this. Two extraverts appear with her and she demonstrates techniques with them that may help you too.

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    Emotional intelligence ESTJ tip 3 - Consider the impact your work has on people.

    An ESTJ can be very task orientated. They can become single minded and be so focussed on going step-by-step through their process that they fail to consider the impact of their work on the people in their environment. Who cares? The other people do. An ESTJ with high levels of emotional intelligence would too.

    Stop and consider the other people who are involved in the project with you.

    • How are they feeling?
    • What emotional impact is your style of work having on them?
    • Do they need anything different from you?

    If you don't know, ask.

    Maybe if you are an ESTJ you don't care! Maybe you think this is irrelevant and it's the responsibility of your colleagues to manage their emotions. This is only part of the story. If you want to develop higher levels of emotional intelligence and be a more successful manager or leader, considering other people's feelings is an important part of this.

    I recently had the head of a leadership team say, about a group of ESTJs who were in his team, "The ESTJs were so task orientated that they failed to see the train wreckage they were leaving behind."

    Do you really want to leave a train wreckage? If not, you could, as an ESTJ, benefit from developing your emotional intelligence and softening the negative impact you have on others. Projects are more likely to be finished faster if you do. Conflicts waste time and money.

    Want to know more about how your ESTJ type and how it influences your communication, career, leadership skills and relationships? It's included as part of our smart leadership coaching package.

    Emotional intelligence ESTJ tip 4 - Validate and acknowledge feelings.

    I was listening to a conversation once, where a man was saying how upset and concerned he was over something that had happened. The ESTJ woman whom he was talking to, simply said, "You'll get over it." He was dismissed in one hit!

    One of the dimensions of emotional intelligence is the ability to understand and acknowledge how someone else is feeling. This ESTJ did not demonstrate this at all. Of course, at a logical level the man may get over it at some stage. However, this response dismisses the significance of his emotional response and at best ignores it.

    An ESTJ might learn an alternative way to respond to people's feelings. It doesn't have to be complex or deep. (An ESTJ may feel very uncomfortable if they thought they were getting into a deep and meaningful emotional discussion or stepping into an emotional outpouring.)

    It could simply be that you acknowledge how a person feels.

    • "I can see you're upset about that," or
    • "It sounds like Susie has left you feeling embarrassed."

    Just that alone would reflect a higher level of emotional intelligence and high EQ, and an understanding of others' emotions.

    Why bother? It means that the team you manage will trust you more and you will get fewer surprises about people's reactions.

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    Emotional intelligence ESTJ tip 5 - Avoid statements that appear as put-downs.

    I remember explaining to an ESTJ once why it was a little difficult for me to take time out of my business for a holiday at short notice. I wasn't complaining about this as I love my work and I get booked, well in advance, to speak on emotional intelligence at some amazing conferences. I was simply giving some data. The response came back, "Well, you decided to run your own business, no-one else."

    What kind of emotional intelligence did this response display? Very little!

    Imagine if you have stakeholders, customers or employees who are giving you information and you put them down in this way. How will it affect the relationship? Badly. Sure, you could argue it's just a statement of fact but it is presented in a critical way. It is the criticism that will be received and will knock your success at building collaborative or innovative partnerships.

    Emotional intelligence is vital for working relationships.

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    Summary: Emotional intelligence in ESTJs and their strengths

    ESTJs are often superb administrators. They can get jobs done on time, to specification and on budget. They have a lot going for them when it comes to complex technical tasks and project management. They can therefore end up in executive or managerial positions responsible for working with, motivating and collaborating with people. This is why their emotional intelligence matters.

    Relationships require emotional intelligence skills. No matter how practical and results driven you are, if, as an ESTJ, you are also working with people, you need to develop and use your emotional intelligence.

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    ESTJS at work: Get to know your type, increase communication effectiveness and lower conflict

    There is so much that you or your team can learn so that you develop greater understanding of, and skills with, your communication, personality and relationships at work and home. The EI Institute has a number of options to help you:

    1. If you are have to live or work with Introverts or Intuitives, especially INFJs, then this 2018 book by Rachel Green, our Director, is a must read: "INFJ: What's it like to be one."  
       then this 2018 book by Rachel Green, our Director, is a must read: "INFJ: What's it like to be one."
    2. Want to be able to manage your emotions more productively? Then get our 2 DVD set "How to develop emotional resilience and manage your emotions" and Rachel will show you many ways to do this. Two Extraverts appear with her and she demonstrates techniques with them that may help you too.
    3. There is superior 1-1 coaching; and the MBTI is included as part of our smart leadership coaching package. You can find out your MBTI type and develop the skills you need, with Rachel Green.

    For more details or to make a booking e-mail us now or pick up the phone and call us.