Journey of Three - Katherine Martinez

Katherine's EDI team reinforces what they learned about behavioral styles in their Geoteaming activity.

Like a coin there are two sides to emotional intelligence, self and social. The self-side is the awareness of one’s understanding of who you are, what you stand for, and how you want to be perceived. The social-side is the acknowledgement of other people's perspectives, willingness to support, and building/maintenance of positive relationships. From Thursday’s EQ session, both the 'Quest for EQ' Board Game and Geoteaming scavenger hunt helped me assess both my self-side and social-side.

My emotional intelligence is linked to my natural behavioral style of being a stabilizer-controller. My social-side is something that has always come natural to me. Thus when people first meet me, my level of engagement with them can be viewed as strong leadership quality. This can be a double edged sword for me. How did I traditionally lead? By developing strong personal relationships as a means to motivate others and accomplish tasks. Why is this ineffective for me at times? Under pressure, my behaviors can shift to be very direct and blunt which is off-putting for those who perceive me as friendly, warm and personable, prior to a situation.

What I struggled with before starting the EDI program is why my behaviors and actions change in a high stressed environment. Why do I become someone that I don’t think I am? It was during the board game that an AHA moment happened. During the game, we had an emotional intelligence self-assessment. It was through the self-side portion of the assessment that I realized that I don’t have a clear understanding of who I am in certain situations. While I am first to applause others on their accomplishments, my own accomplishments aren’t something I value enough at the same level. Recognizing others' feelings and wanting to understand why they feel the way they do is more of a priority than my own at any given moment.

My realization is this, while is it great to have a strong social-side, my self-side must be just as balanced to the social-side, if not more. An effective leader can inspire and lead others by embodying the values in which they expect others to have. Being more self-aware and self-guided in situations at work is something I have to continue to practice! I do believe that by focusing on my own feelings and valuing them just as high as I value others will also help continue to build my confidence and distress myself during key situations at work.