For a long period of time men were the ultimate leaders of the business world. From the highest positions in international companies to small businesses, women didn’t have many responsible roles.
In the last couple of decades, however, the tide has turned. The latest reports show that a growing number of women launch and successfully run small businesses. In 2015, about 29% of all SMB-owners in the US were women.
While these numbers are encouraging, women are still experiencing various difficulties in business. In order to overcome them, they need to use all the available tools. Social intelligence is one of those powerful weapons. In the following lines, you’ll learn how to use social intelligence in the business context.
1) Showing empathy to clients and employees
One of the most stressful situations for every new female business owner is the process of negotiations with new clients. As such, their position won’t differ that much from the one of a new male business owner. Both individuals will have to learn how to cope with a wide range of different clients.
However, women might be more successful in those negotiations if they switch on their center for empathy. Since women are allegedly more empathic than men, they’re more likely to put on somebody else’s shoes and see how their clients feel in the given situation.
A higher level of compassion could be used in various business situations, where you need to think fast to seize your business opportunity.
Moreover, as female SMB-owners start hiring workers, they’ll have better understanding of those new employees and their needs. As a result, they can boost their productivity by applying the right social manners in critical situations.
2) Listening before speaking
Communication is one of the most important features of every business. Since women are often more verbal than men, they can communicate their business ideas in a more efficient way.
Nevertheless, being a successful business owner often means listening rather than speaking. In turn, this makes room for improved business communication, given that you don’t understand this literally. A great listener is the one that often asks questions, among many other things they do.
Whenever you think your client or worker isn’t being clear about their thoughts, don’t hesitate to ask them to clarify their ideas.
Moreover, what socially intelligent businesswoman will never do is distract the other party using her phone, computer or any other device. Being a good listener means committing yourself to the person you’re communicating with. When you’re immersed into the conversation, you’ll have a chance to really get to know the other person in that interaction, as well as their ideas.
As a result, you’ll possess more knowledge of the person and the matter in question after the conversation than before it. This will alleviate the decision-making process. Therefore, try hard to develop your listening skills from day one, since they’re important elements of social intelligence.
3) Delegating right tasks to right people
Apart from behaving wisely in different social situations, social intelligence also includes recognizing what roles suit what people.
In line with that, a successful businesswoman will know how to delegate the business tasks to her employees.
Having employees also brings some additional changes into the professional life of every businesswoman.
Unlike the communication with clients, where you keep the professional distance in most cases, recruiting your own employees includes some emotional involvement.
Apart from identifying the right social tools in different business contexts, you should learn more about the emotional side of your employees. By applying some elements of emotional intelligence to your managerial style, you’ll be able to form a cohesive team or respectful workers.
4) Identifying your strengths
As a new business owner, you’ll have to find a way to deal with various business considerations. If you want to start building a successful enterprise, you’ll have to be able to identify your strengths from the very beginning.
For instance, if you’re a good negotiator, always take responsibility for such tasks. As opposed to that, if you’re better at background jobs, some of the employees you hire should be suitable for engaging business activities.
What’s important here is to supervise your professional development to recognize your strong spots, as well as your soft spots. Having this insight will help you boost your social intelligence and prepare for new business challenges.
Social intelligence is extremely important in the modern business environment. It’s imperative to conduct regular self-assessment, in order to see how you interact with your clients and collaborators. Engaging various elements of social intelligence in work will make it possible for businesswomen to highlight their strong sides and improve their weak spots. As a result, they’ll be more competitive in the business race and keep taking better positions in business ventures.