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Investing in emotional intelligence: taking care of the human behind artificial intelligence

January 12, 2023

According to the World Health Organization, mental health conditions impact families, communities, and society. Due to depression and anxiety, approximately 12 billion collective working days are lost annually, which “cost the global economy US$1 trillion each year predominantly from reduced productivity.”

One of the pandemic’s side effects among organizations, businesses, and overall industries was increased focus on mental health awareness. Companies realized the importance of protecting their employees’ well-being and found new paths to prevent mental health risks. 

For Globant, taking care of its employees has always had a front-row seat, strengthened by one of the pillars of our Be Kind initiative, known as  Be Kind to Yourself (BKTY). As one of Globant’s Environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) commitments, Be Kind to Yourself is a pillar that promotes personal well-being, driving home the understanding that work-life balance is key to each person taking care of their physical, mental, and emotional health. 

“We focus on promoting self-awareness, growing consciousness, and the importance of self-care that leads to a better quality of life. Well-being is up to each person, and we give many tools to make it possible.” (Milagros Olivera, Global Manager of BKTY at Globant)

This approach focuses holistically to help people at Globant have a balanced life and acquire skills and habits to develop their full potential in a healthy, joyous, and sustainable way. This pillar encourages our people to dedicate time and attention to understanding the importance of physical, mental, and emotional health. Support to help this endeavor includes events, digital cultural tools, programs for self-knowledge, unique employee benefits, expert talks, webinars, and health challenges. 

Why is emotional intelligence important for organizations?

Mental health is a vast subject and includes various vital elements that influence the well-being of a person; one of them is emotional intelligence. 

Emotional intelligence is “the ability to recognize, understand and manage our own emotions and…understand and influence the emotions of others“. This means that by being aware that our own emotions can drive our behavior and impact people, both positively and negatively, we can learn how to manage and cope with them. 

Throughout the world, being under some sort of pressure at work is the norm, which means the ability to manage our emotions is not only necessary in stressful situations, but it gives us an advantage in circumstances such as:

  • Giving and receiving feedback
  • Meeting tight deadlines
  • Dealing with challenging teammates
  • Not having enough resources
  • Facing change
  • Adapting through setbacks and failure
  • Making better decisions

 

Being able to navigate emotions is also a game-changer when engaging potential customers and clients, building better relationships by understanding those around you and reacting accordingly.

 The following are five areas of emotional intelligence professionals must be aware of in order to contribute to a healthy work culture: Self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills. Through understanding these areas, we can become more flexible, adaptable, and resilient. Plus, keeping our cool helps us to think clearly and objectively, which is the best state of mind to be in when making important decisions. Emotional intelligence can diminish the adverse effects of stress, which can lead to burnout and job dissatisfaction.

 In leadership and managerial positions, emotional intelligence is particularly significant. It can greatly influence positive work culture in the organization, increasing efficiency and productivity and lead to growth, innovation, assertiveness, creativity, and enable strong bonds between a leader and their team.

Leaders are positioned to have direct impact on the innovation of a company. By encouraging their team to bring new ideas to the table and supporting them, the leader provides an inviting environment known as “psychological safety,” which is a foundational need for the team to be able to improve, grow and learn. When employees feel safe and encouraged by their leaders, they will be motivated and inspired to be more productive and creative.

Artificial Intelligence and technology, in general, are changing the world and our lives rapidly. However, as we leverage the possibilities of the digital age, we can embrace the same elements that define us as humans, our qualities and aspects; these strengths help us reach our full potential through our imagination, empathy, creativity, and self-awareness. 

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We believe that it is possible to be an organization where personal life purpose is aligned with company purpose. We promote a wellness culture to allow Globers to unleash their full potential. Body, mind, and spirit are connected to the present while working to change the future of business and building the best version of yourself. At Globant, we believe that changing the world starts from within.