April 11, 2022

How Developing Your Emotional Intelligence Can Lead to Career Success

This week on The Winning Zone Podcast, Hilmon Sorey is joined by Daniel Tolson, a business coach who specializes in emotional intelligence, to discuss how your emotional intelligence relates to your career, the importance of recognizing it, and how it can make you or break you.

Defining Emotional Intelligence

Daniel grew up in the pawn industry for 17 years, with no idea of what emotional intelligence was. However, what emotional intelligence boils down to is street smarts. It is something that is learned and can be broken down into five pillars: self awareness, self regulation, motivation, empathy, and social regulation. Continue listening at 00:42 to learn more about each pillar.

Helping Businesses Succeed

Daniel’s work with emotional intelligence is done in the context of helping businesses succeed. He takes the five pillars and works within organizations to teach them and apply them in order to make them better. Daniel explains that, “One bad person on the team can interrupt the work flow of up to 300 people.” It is not necessarily that companies are hiring bad people; rather, they are hiring the wrong person for the job. The leader must understand themselves, which comes back to emotional intelligence- instead of hiring people like them, the must hire people that compliment them. Learn more at 03:51.

Self Awareness

Daniel explains that having self awareness is understanding our personal behaviors. There are four key areas to self awareness- How do I approach problem solving? How do I approach influencing people? How do I try to steady the pace and consistency in the environment? How do I deal with policy and compliance? We can see this very easily in a sales person who overpromises. Continue listening at 10:54 for a more in-depth explanation.

Self Regulation

“If you can’t name it, you can’t tame it.” This is the mantra Daniel uses to explain self regulation. Daniel also explains that there are four silent fears that we must gain awareness of in order to achieve self regulation. A couple of these fears include the fear of being taken advantage of and the fear of being rejected. Continue listening at 14:35 for a deep dive into the fears that accompany self regulation, as well as some examples.


Daniel has performed thousands of scientific case studies. What he has found is very low resiliency scores. According to Daniel, resiliency is a learned skill throughout life. Resiliency is also considered one of the twenty five universally recognized skills for career success. With resiliency scores so low, what Daniel is seeing in relation to the working world, is that people are getting knocked down and they can’t get back up. This is referred to as the ‘strawberry generation,’ because they bruise easily and are unable to get back up and move forward. In relation to leadership. Leaders must be very mindful and sensitive to this. Listen at 21:18 to learn more about resiliency and how it can be learned and how it ties in to self regulation.


Daniel says there can be no sales without empathy. And empathy is the opposite of self awareness, which now becomes social awareness, which is empathy. You must understand why your team, your customers think and feel the way they do; what drives them and what scares them. This then leads into the fifth pillar; continue listening at 29:31 to learn more.

Social Regulation

Empathy leads to the fifth pillar, which is social regulation. If you don’t know what drives people, then you can’t communicate, influence, or persuade those people. The difference between self regulation and social regulation is that self is inward focused, while social is the outward expression of the other pillars. If we are unaware of our own emotional intelligence, then the chance of being able to read other people’s behavior is almost none. Continue listening at 29:05 to learn more about social regulation.

Ongoing Development

In regards to emotional intelligence and personal development, it is an ongoing effort. You have to do it consistently and for life. You can’t just make one effort and then stop.

Key Snippets

00:42 Defining Emotional Intelligence

03:51 Helping Businesses Succeed

10:54 Self Awareness

14:35 Self Regulation

21:18 Motivation

28:31 Empathy

29:05 Social Regulation

Continue reading

Our newsletter

Get alerts for books, tools, and courses.

Not another boring newsletter. We periodically publish innovative tools you can use.
No spam EVER!