12 Job Interview Behaviours that Signal You’re Ready to Lead

So you’re prepared to embrace all the challenges that come with leading a team and your Job Interview went well and you answered all the questions and you feel good about it (or at least as good as you can feel), but the Hiring Manager in the final interview informs you that they decided to hire another candidate. How did that happen?

Emotional Intelligence is the Key to a Leadership Role

Things looked so good – you made it through the 1st two sets of interviews with the Recruiter and the HR Manager and the final grilling by the Hiring Manager wasn’t too bad either, but you didn’t get the job.

As I’ve grown in my management experience and watched my mentors operate over the years, I’ve seen a number of key traits that seem to represent milestones of growth and maturity and emotional intelligence from a leadership perspective. To me, managing is about ‘moving people’ and leading requires demonstrable emotional intelligence behaviours and communication skills. Switched on hiring managers will check you out for some or all of these 12 true emotional intelligence leadership behaviours.

#1 You’re passionate about results instead of perfection

You won’t set perfection as your target because you know that it doesn’t exist. Humans are fallible by nature. You don’t waste time lamenting what you failed to accomplish and instead lead to help your team move forward, excited about what they’ve achieved and what you will accomplish with them in the future.

#2 Opinions matter, but they don’t drain your energy

It is definitely a challenge for every leader to not be bothered by what others think, but you don’t feel the need to compare yourself to others, and you tend to take people’s opinions with a grain of salt. You enjoy staying positive over being influenced by bad vibes.

#3 You’re passionate about your people and the world around them

You believe that intelligent people are curious about everyone around them. You are curious without micro managing and you radiate empathy and therefore your team feels your emotional connection (= EQ).

#4 You embrace change

You are naturally flexible and are constantly adapting. You know that fear of change is bad for business. You seek out opportunities for change, and you form simple actionable plans if these feared changes are lurking around the corner.

#5 You’re a good judge of character

You’re connected to the real word and you have social awareness because you get involved. You have fine-tuned your ability to read other people and you often know, sense or understand what they’re about, and what they’re going through. People are people to you. You understand their motivations, even those that lie hidden below the veneer.

#6 You have a robust emotional vocabulary

You have learned to master your emotions because you understand them, and you use an extensive plain speaking vocabulary of feelings to do so. You are careful with your word choices, to  explain the  insight you have into exactly how you are feeling, what caused it, and what you should do about it.

#7 You identified your strengths and weaknesses

You don’t just understand your emotions, you know from experience what they’re good for and what they’re terrible for. You also know who pushes their buttons and the environments (both situations and people) that trigger them.

#8 You let go of mistakes

You don’t waste time dwelling on your mistakes. Your balance lies in your ability to transform failures into steps of self-improvement. You have a tendency to get right back up every time you fall down.

#9 You are difficult to offend

If you have a firm grasp of who you are, it’s difficult for someone to say or do something that gets you upset. You are open-minded and you have developed a thick skin. You even poke occasional fun at yourself or let other people make jokes about you because you are able to accept who you are.

#10 You give and you don’t expect anything in return

You tend to give spontaneously, without expecting anything in return, because you know the power and the impression it leaves behind. You naturally enjoy building strong relationships because you are constantly thinking about others.

#11 You don’t hold grudges and you avoid toxic people

You don’t hold a grudge because you don’t like to hold onto the stress. It makes you feel better now and it is better for your health.

You take toxic people with a grain of salt or avoid them to avoid letting him or her bring you down.

#12 You take time out and you get enough sleep

You take regular time off for family, friends, sport or other activities because it helps you to keep your stress under control and to live in the moment.

You know about the importance of sleep to increasing your emotional intelligence and manage your stress levels. So, you make getting adequate amounts of sleep a priority.

If you’re used to being the boss or eventually want to be, don’t hire anyone, ever, who does not display strong emotional intelligence. Smart hiring managers find a unicorn and go with it. That is, they want their team to produce big results, because that just makes them and you look more awesome. Win-win right there.

So – check your EQ behaviours before you march into the final interview so you’re ready to impress, and remember to hunt wisely!