InsightsPOSTED May 16, 2019

#FutureForward: Future-proof your career with emotional intelligence and analytical thinking

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In our #FutureForward series we ask members of our APEX family to share their insights into what two skills they think will still be relevant in public relations, communications, marketing and digital in 30 years.

Over the past decade, we have seen radical shifts in the way we buy, communicate, live and work. This rapid shift in several aspects of the world we live in is just going to continue, and sometimes the speed of change can be dizzying.

Artificial Intelligence is a growing area, but I don’t think we communicators need to be threatened about losing our jobs to deep learning mechanisms quite yet. In fact, there’s something to be said for ideas, products and skills that last the test of time.

Two of the core skills that I believe will stand us communicators in good stead are emotional intelligence and analytical thinking.

“Having a high EQ is integral to success in our industry. We need to hone our ability to tell a captivating story that is driven by emotional intelligence.”

EQ is the new IQ

Broadly defined as the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others, emotional intelligence is generally said to include five main areas: self-awareness, emotional control, self-motivation, empathy and relationship skills.  

Put simply, it is the ability to problem solve with or without emotion. Anyone who has worked with me for more than 10 minutes has probably heard me state that I hate feelings in the office. I’d like to believe this has less to do with a lack of empathy, but instead, the ability or desire to separate transactional work and personal sentiment. This can be very helpful, given that we are constantly working in groups, whether it is within our teams or with clients.

Having a high EQ is integral to success in our industry. We need to hone our ability to tell a captivating story that is driven by emotional intelligence. We talk about this all the time in the context of media pitching and social media – how we need to be consistent and authentic in our communications to our clients’ target audiences. As the brand voice and conscience of our clients’ organizations, it’s crucial that we take the time to cultivate our EQ to serve us well long-term.

Read between the lines

Critical thinking – Rawpixel.com_Shutterstock

Critical thinking is the little black dress of integrated communications. Thinking analytically to solve problems has always been a core skill for marketers, but today it is a non-negotiable quality for the sustained success of our discipline. With the explosion of data available to us today, our ability to analyze efficiently and effectively helps us develop smart strategies that boost our clients’ bottom lines.

“Critical thinking is the little black dress of integrated communications.”

Generating insights is easier with more data; however, the ability to read and analyze the data critically to arrive at key actionable items is becoming more important. This is especially true in the context of shrinking budgets and the widespread disruption the marketing industry has been facing.

Ultimately, businesses want to partner with agencies that can help drive business outcomes and help them look good. If looking good and driving business results is your cup of tea, visit our website or email us at bigger@apexpr.com.

Rohini Mukherji is a VP of integrated communications at APEX Public Relations.

Check out more of our #FutureForward series to know what other skills are expected to stand the test of time 30 years from now. 

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