Emotionally Intelligent Regional Governance

Regional leaders who have strong emotional intelligence are better equipped to navigate challenges, inspire their teams, and drive organizational success.

Emotional Intelligence is an important leadership skill for regional leaders. Shifts in workforce dynamics, technological advancements, and the increasing complexity and uncertainty of the in the development and implementation of policies  has led to a greater emphasis on leadership skills such as emotional intelligence, adaptability, collaboration, and empathy.

Emotional Intelligence is defined as the ability to perceive, use, understand, manage, and handle emotions. People with high emotional intelligence have the following skills:


Self-awareness is the ability to recognize and understand your own emotions and how your actions, moods, and emotions effect others. When you are self aware, you also recognize the relationship between between how you feel and how you behave. This includes recognizing your strengths and limitations, being open to new information and experiences and a willingness to learn from you interactions with others.

Emotional Control/Self-Management

Emotional intelligence requires you to regulate and manage your emotions so you express them appropriately and at the right time. When you are skilled in self-management you are flexible and adaptable and can manage conflict and difficult situations. Those with this skill also have a positive and optimistic outlook that lets them work towards goals despite setbacks.

Social Skills/Social Awareness

True emotional understanding involves more than just understanding your own emotions and those of others. You also have to be able to use this information in your daily interactions and communications. Empathy, or the ability to understand other people’s feelings and see things from their point of view, is a critical emotional intelligence skill. Being empathetic allows you to understand the power dynamics that can influence social relationships. Those high in empathy can sense who possesses power in a relationship. Because of this, they can better interpret situations that hinge on power dynamics and have political acumen.


People who are emotionally intelligent are motivated by things beyond external rewards like fame, money, recognition, and acclaim. Instead, they have a passion to fulfill their own inner needs and goals. Those who are competent in motivation tend to be action-oriented. They set goals, have a high need for achievement, and are always looking for ways to do better. They are also good at motivating and supporting others.

Cultivating Emotional Intelligence

Luckily, leaders can cultivate Emotional Intelligence. The California Academy for Regional Leaders (CARL) just completed its March session in Napa which focused on Values Driven/Authentic Leadership. Katie Miller from Left-Lane Advisors, an affiliate of Feer & Pehrs, helped CARL cohort #6 build their empathy and compassion and increase their EI.

Here are some additional resources for you to work on building your Emotional Intelligence.

Selected EI Resources

  • Brene Brown. The Power of Vulnerability TED Talk Link
  • Kendra Cherry, MSEd. 5 Key Emotional Intelligence Skills. Verywell Mind, Updated on December 31, 2023 Link
  • Simon Sinek. (2017) Find Your Why: A Practical Guide for Discovering Purpose for You and Your Team Link
  • Hidden Brain. Podcast on Happiness 2.0: Cultivating Your Purpose
  • Career Compass No. 86: Empathy As a Superpower Link
  • Career Compass No. 97: Seven Ways To Boost Your Leadership Capabilities Link
  • Career Compass No. 91: Post-COVID, What Is Your Leadership Narrative? Link
  • Career Compass No. 79: Leading by Connecting Link
  • Career Compass No. 67: Effective Leaders Start with Compassion Link
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