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Emotional Intelligence: The Key To Providing An Exceptional Customer Experience

GCL | 2 December 2019

Marketers, regardless of whether they work in telemarketing, digital, strategy or any other aspect of the profession, need to understand that emotional intelligence (EQ) is a vital part of customer experience (CX).

Let’s explore how marketers can use EQ to improve their CX approach.

Why is EQ important?

Daniel Goleman, the author and researcher that helped bring EQ into the mainstream, answered this question on the importance of EQ:

Q: Today, more than ever, creating an extraordinary customer experience is critical for an organisation’s survival. Can you address how EI (EQ) plays a pivotal role in the area of customer care?

A: Because emotions are contagious, how your employees interact with your customers determines how the customer will feel about your company. You want your employees to be using their emotional intelligence to get and stay in an upbeat, empathic space, and to relate to your customers from that state. In Working With Emotional Intelligence I reviewed data from the hospitality industry showing that the most effective employees were adept at emotional intelligence competencies like emotional self-management (curbing negative feelings and encouraging motivation and engagement), empathy (which allows them to sense how others feel, and so be more effective communicators), and collaboration (so they work seamlessly as team members).

Harvard Professor, Gerald Zaltman, also highlights the important role emotions play in decision making:

“In reality, people’s emotions are closely interwoven with reasoning processes. Although our brains have separate structures for processing emotions and logical reasoning, the two systems communicate with each other and jointly affect our behaviour. Even more important, the emotional system – the older of the two in terms of evolution – typically exerts the first force on our thinking and behaviour. More important still, emotions contribute to and are essential for decision making…Clearly understanding the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’ of consumer thinking and behavior is the key to helping consumers make the right decisions for themselves.”

How EQ can improve your CX

Understanding the importance of EQ is great, but how exactly can you use it to improve your business’ CX? Customer success platform Weav shares four ways your EQ can be used:


  • EQ in the workplace – Promoting emotional intelligence in your organisation can improve its performance. Sanofi was able to increase their annual performance by 12% by focusing on the EQ skills of its sales team. Motorola saw improvements of more than 90% for employees in a manufacturing plant who underwent emotional intelligence training.

  • EQ in customer service
    – Employees in customer service often have to deal with unhappy customers. High EQ prepares these individuals to be patient when engaging with people in these situations.

    EQ in customer engagement – A company must have high-EQ employees to communicate the right message and understand when a person is in a negative state, whether it’s in a store, via an email or via a tweet.

    EQ in sustaining client relationships – EQ helps you form good business relationships based on communication, trust and empathy. Employees with high EQ will help you build strong relationships since they will better understand the needs of each client.


Improve your understanding of EQ

If you’re interested in learning more about EQ and the vital role it plays in your business as a whole, you can download our ebook Connecting with your leads using EQ: Understanding the critical role of emotional intelligence in marketing.

Another way to boost your organisation’s EQ is by partnering with an organisation that already understands these principals. GCL Direct is a B2B telemarketing and lead generation agency with over 29 years of experience. Our telemarketing service embraces EQ, which is why we offer unscripted services that are available in a language that is relevant to your region. If you’d like to know more about this or any of our other services we offer, contact us today.