From an article in City AM: Want to master the art of negotiation? You need emotional intelligence.
With so much focus on the detail – or lack thereof – in the UK’s proposed agreement for leaving the EU, you could be forgiven for thinking that deal-making is a technocrat’s art.
For the negotiation teams here in the UK and Europe, technical expertise and competences about the issues at stake are, of course, critical.
But another quality is also essential: empathy.
To offer agreements that work in the interest of both sides, you need to be able to see things from a different perspective than your own.
The Prime Minister’s negotiating and persuasion skills will remain firmly in the spotlight until a decision on Britain’s future place in Europe is reached.
And at the recent G20 meeting, it was clear that how to manage bilateral relationships are top of the global agenda, with other governments and businesses across the world all needing to navigate increasingly complicated trade and political differences in ways that are ideally mutually beneficial.
Can you empathise?
There is an increasing spotlight on how political leaders and their teams balance their competencies in such complex discussions.
The art of diplomacy and deal-making is not just the domain of global politicians, business leaders and policymakers. We all have to negotiate on a daily basis – with our peers, our teams, with suppliers, and with customers.
And for those working in accountancy and finance, the ability to negotiate successfully using empathy is a must in an age when budgets and the bottom line are under scrutiny.
Emotion in a digital age
To the casual observer, emotions and accountancy can seem like unrelated concepts. But to succeed in an era of increasing digitisation, today’s professional accountants need recognise the importance of this valuable human quality that’s notably difficult for machines to replicate.
Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify your own emotions and those of others, harness and apply them to tasks, and regulate and manage them.
Our latest ACCA research into this capability, the report Emotional Quotient in a Digital Age, identifies emotional intelligence as a key skill for developing the accountancy profession, particularly in a fast-evolving digital age.
To find out how you can develop emotional intelligence contact us now.