Does Leadership EQ Beat AI? Emotional versus Artificial Intelligence

Does Leadership EQ Beat AI

Rapid Advances in Technology Are Changing the Way We Live and Work
The exciting and sometimes scary growth and application of technology to enable innovation and development appears to be here to stay. Kids are growing up with it, and entire industries are being disrupted by it.  So, is leadership still important?  Does leadership EQ beat AI?

  • On a macro scale, the World Economic Forum reports that a 10% increase in broadband penetration is associated with a 1.4% increase in GDP growth in emerging markets.
  • On the work front, McKinsey reports what many of us have experienced – many activities that workers carry out today (about 30 percent) have the potential to be automated by technologies that exist today.

Will One-Third of Your Job Go Away?
In additional to industries like Trucking that is predicted to lose thousands of jobs to self-driving cars in the future or areas like healthcare where predictive analytics is changing the way doctors diagnose and prescribe, technology and partial automation will impact almost every job from the front-line factory worker to the CEO. Amazon has even begun to use algorithms instead of humans to predict demand of certain products.

In fact, there are reportedly 170,000 fewer retail jobs in 2017—and 75,000 more Amazon robots.  As artificial intelligence, predictive analytics and machine learning continue to grow, what skills will matter most to perform at your peak? Does leadership EQ beat AI?

Skills that Matter Least
Let’s start with the skills that seem to have the highest probability to be improved through automation. While the majority of artificial intelligence applications still require the help of humans, we believe highly automatable skills fall into two broad categories:

  1. Administrative, repetitive and routine tasks
  2. Data gathering and analysis

While we are confident that technological advances will continue to delight, scare and surprise us, these two categories seem like the lowest common denominator. We already see this happening with tasks such as grilling burgers, making salads, brewing coffee and selecting stock portfolios.

Skills that Matter Most
If the need for humans to undertake automatable tasks will be on the decline, we believe that should free up more than 30 percent of workers time to do the “human performance things” that truly differentiate one person and one company from another. We believe success will therefore become more and more dependent upon Emotional Intelligence (EQ) – the ability to understand, empathize and collaborate with other people.

Those individual and organizations that excel at EQ in three overall areas will outperform their peers.

1. Understanding Others
Invest in the self-awareness, empathy and communication skills required to read people’s emotional cues, recognize the feelings and needs behind those signals, understand what matters most to them both personally and professionally and articulate your understanding in a way that can be heard.

2. Motivating Others
Invest in the skills required to create, articulate and align clear goals and roles. Then learn how to use intrinsic and extrinsic motivation communication skills to help others to do their best work. Remember, your job as a leader is to create the circumstances to consistently get the most out of your people.

3. Collaborating with Others
Invest in the influence, change, conflict management, problem solving, project management, leadership, decision making and teambuilding skills required to produce performance results which cannot be achievable by any single individual alone.

The Bottom Line
Does leadership EQ beat AI?  The good news is that most experienced leaders already believe that emotional intelligence (EQ) is more important than one’s intelligence (IQ) in terms of being successful. Think of technology advancements as the foundational progress related to building personal and professional IQ. Then invest in EQ to take you and your team to the next level with the help of technology.

If you liked Does Leadership EQ beat AI, download 8 Reasons Leaders Need 360 Feedback

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