Relational Intelligence, the most important skill at work

Relational Intelligence, this is what I need at work. Ok, not only that, but the more I understand how professional relations work and the more I realize how important they are.

I’ve been learning in the past 10 years of my working experience that being able to relate with colleauges and superios or knowing how to act within an organisation is way more important than what you actually do at your work.
Let me me explain, of course I have to do my job at best and even better but what is the point of having it all perfectly made if I am not able to communicate it properly and nobody else would benefit from it? Or I wonder, how can I expect that my co-workers are collaborative if I am not with them? Some people in work do not understand that relations are the key to work, without them we are no-one.

For example if I want to introduce a new project idea and instead of waiting an appropriate moment during a meeting (that maybe I set myself to specifically talk about it), I pretend to talking about it rushing during a koffee break in a corridor, without even having enough information about it and, most important, without the complete attention from my audience. Can could I expect people to listen to me? Or even to be interested? That is not a good time to talk about!

Another good example is when you are attending an event and all colleagues sleep at the same hotel. At breakfast time, I see my boss talking with other managers at the same level, then I would never go there and ask to sit together with them, unless I know 100% I am welcome or I am invited to do so. Instead I would sit, maybe alone, in another table. Sometimes breakfasts are the only moment that you can spend alone with your superiors (who in many cases come from another country or continent) and I know you don’t need someone else stepping in. As I would not want that is happens if it was my turn to sit at that table.

During conference call there is always someone that do not understand that a conference time is not a good time to go in details in a problems and making all the other participants waiting for you to finish your “private” (working speaking) conversation, when you could have been done it directly calling that person on the phone. Conference calls are moments where I say something that could interest everyone listening and if I have a thing direct only to one, I would take it off line, stop.
The only exception, if someone want to screw publically the person he is addressing to. Often, who does that, it does it on purpose. From my experience, this technic never works because other listeners would not understand what is going on and would feel bad for the person attacked. Normally and luckily in such situations, senior managers step in and close it suggesting to take it off line. So, my suggestion is, do it directly off line, better on person if possible. Never screw people on conference, please.

During a meeting, it’s always best not interrupt who is speaking, especially if he/she is senior (in the company or as a role) than you. I tend to see this behavior changing a lot depending on countries, some cultures are more talkative and do not bother if interrupted, but the majority tend to respect other people speeches, so don’t burn them.
As said, I learnt that interrupting is never a good thing and I try not to do it. Of course my nature as Italian sometimes is stronger and when I am in a dual conversation and I am really passionate about something, my mouth just can’t stop and I struggle not to say what I always want to say. Thanks God, as I’ve already written in older post, speaking in English (or German) force me to stop and wait more. I know, I still have to improve this (:


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