As artificial intelligence makes its way into every organization, the biggest fear employees have is that it will replace them. Some pundits have gone as far as to declare that “expertise” in any field is dead. Nothing could be further from the truth. The biggest challenge we all face today is not that our jobs will be replaced. It is that we need to significantly improve our professional expertise so that we can work with the complex solutions generated by massive amounts of data being mined by machine learning algorithms.
Take a disease such as prostate cancer. It used to be much simpler for the doctor to diagnose three known types and prescribe one of a few available solutions. Today, algorithms identify a greater variety of types of the disease and identify them at different stages; there are many combinations of treatment, and we must take into account the genetics of the patient. Let’s also keep in mind the pros and cons of any solution that the patient, with their unique lifestyle and needs, must weigh heavily.
The algorithms can spit out higher probability recommendations; but the doctor and the patient have a much more, not less, difficult decision to make. This is true across all high-value products and services industries. In all fields, clients expect a uniquely personalized solution from an expert, all the way down to the level of a sales associate.
And it gets even more challenging. In today’s business environment, the advent of A.I., interconnectedness, interdependence and radical transparency that technology has created, has also set off an emotional intelligence revolution that requires all organizations and their people to dramatically up their game in social responsibility. The unforgiving, hyper-competitive marketplace demands that brands not only be domain experts in products and services; but the brand’s executives, managers and front-line ambassadors must deliver their superior expertise with the highest level of humanity and emotional intelligence. This is the new landscape we must traverse to survive and thrive.
Today, the great achievers at all levels of organizations must work to build deeper expertise in their profession as a high-performance, relationship-building tool, knowing that all the emotional intelligence in the world will not make up for the failure to deliver on commitments made to others. And, conversely, professional expertise will not cut it, if it is delivered with emotional deficiency.
Through ten years of empirical, field-based research, Luxury Institute and EIX have developed a methodology to transform corporate cultures and improve performance at all levels. The method focuses on the four pillars that workers and customers say propel high performance in any human interaction, especially in teamwork. The four pillars are expertise, deep empathy, trustworthiness and generosity. The research shows that if you inject these four highly developed skills into every business or personal human engagement, and you will dramatically increase the probability of achieving positive results individually, and within a team.
According to Luxury Institute and EIX research, individuals who are fully dedicated to emotional self-mastery develop courage and learn to confront the reality of their emotional deficits and adapt immediately without drama, fear or angst. They practice and master the cycle of self-awareness, self-measurement, self-assessment, self-coaching and self- correction. Emotionally intelligent individuals crave and enjoy the reality that success in life is based on a network of collaborative human relationships.
A corporate example from Milton Pedraza’s client case studies illustrates the point. Pedraza and his team worked with independent contractor sales associates, throughout the Northeastern United States, with minimal management. By committing to improving their product knowledge, and transforming themselves from salespeople into high-performance relationship builders, these freelancers increased their sales by 50% in a six-month period, with some increasing their sales well over 100%. This is typical of results Pedraza and his team have achieved by developing expertise with emotional self-mastery within organizations.
Collaborative relationships driven by domain expertise and emotional intelligence will be the connective tissue and scaffolding of high-performance corporate cultures. Individuals with deep emotional intelligence skills, combined with the highest levels of professional expertise will be the most valuable workers in the next decade and beyond. Today, as a business leader, you must demonstrate the expertise of Steve Jobs with the emotional intelligence of Mother Teresa.
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