As a cybersecurity professional, you understand the importance of anticipating threats, recognizing problems, and building a defense. You can analyze, plan, strategize, and manage programs. You have the skills, experience, and education needed to get the job done. But what happens when your job relies on the employees’ actions at businesses and organizations you help protect? You need to be able to relate well with them.
A cybersecurity team has to communicate the importance of identifying potential cyber threats to these employees. A strong team of IT professionals is especially essential in cybersecurity. Businesses that have not been investing in cybersecurity are in an extremely vulnerable position. Your skill, expertise, and intellectual quotient (IQ) all play a role in your ability to protect them from cyber threats.
However, the emotional quotient (EQ) is just as important as you work together to bring awareness to cyber-attacks and communicate necessary defenses to the businesses you serve. Your EQ measures how well you manage your own emotions and understand the emotions of others. Developing a better EQ will improve your team dynamic and help you perform better in the cyber fight. Here are five ways EQ development will serve you well.
Boost Team Motivation
Businesses and organizations don’t just need IT professionals for cybersecurity. They need a motivated team of IT professionals for cybersecurity. You know the importance of your job. You know that essential organizations like the University of Vermont Medical Center are left extremely vulnerable when attacked with ransomware. Patients were unable to receive treatment, employees couldn’t get paid, and the quality of patient care worsened.
These attacks are a constant reminder that you are highly valuable. You and your team keep the necessary systems running. You’re the defense and offense for every business you serve. You need to be motivated. Developing a high EQ can improve confidence and help you stay engaged in solving problems and avoiding issues.
When you’re engaged in your work, you’re motivated to see progress. When you’re motivated, you are more attentive so you’re ready for anything. When the whole team is motivated, it sets the tone for your buisnesses’ brand. Motivation is contagious, and people notice!
Your team’s morale builds self-motivation. One of the ways EQ development can help improve morale is its effect on your mindset. Low morale is related to low self-esteem. When you work on your emotional intelligence and become more self-aware, you also become more confident. The businesses you protect expect confidence from their defense team just as much as intellect.
You work with people all the time. People are affected by morale. You need good cybersecurity people skills to communicate things like why it’s important to create good passwords to employees. In most cases, employees are the first line of defense to combat cyber attacks. They need to have an awareness when managing passwords, be able to identify phishing e-mails, and be on alert for malware.
Your team’s work will help them do this well and they will feed off your morale. You’ve probably invested in obtaining certifications and education to help you do your job better. You will get an even greater return if you invest in building your EQ. You can sign up for coaching or study ways to improve your emotional intelligence by reading. Christian Espinoza literally wrote the book on how your IQ and EQ work together to help you better solve problems in cybersecurity. Solving problems is definitely a morale booster.
Help Identify Weak Areas
Self-awareness is one of the fundamentals of emotional intelligence. If you can identify your weaknesses, those of your team, and the weak areas in a business’s defense, you will be an asset to any company and to your team. When you work on your EQ you are strengthening that emotional muscle personally, then you can use it professionally.
Help With Conflict Resolution
Conflicts are bound to happen on any team, especially in high-stress areas like cybersecurity. Imagine the stress of the cybersecurity team at the University of Vermont Medical Center when cancer patients could not get chemotherapy treatments because of ransomware! Working on your emotional intelligence will help you work better under pressure both autonomously and with a team.
Build Trust With Businesses & Organizations
Businesses rely on you to teach and help build a defense that protects them so they can do what they do best. It’s true that people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. Empathy is another fundamental of a high EQ. People will trust you more when they can connect with you emotionally.
It may be hard to do this if you’ve always been taught to mask your emotions in professional settings. The key is learning to display the appropriate emotions at the appropriate time, without being led by them. Showing empathy demonstrates to the people you work with that you care about your work and their pain points. This is how you build trust and brand yourself as an essential professional in cybersecurity.
Emotional intelligence is often underestimated among individuals with a high IQ. If you work on developing your EQ, you will work better with your team and serve businesses better. Some ways you can improve your EQ include reading or signing up for coaching. A high EQ will help boost motivation, improve morale, identify weak areas, resolve conflicts, and build trust. You should invest time in developing your EQ to improve as a cybersecurity professional and a leader.