As a leader, you’re constantly competing for talent. You want to hire and work with the best, and you deserve to work with a strong team. Unfortunately, stress prevents us from building and exercising our interpersonal skills. In extreme circumstances, there is a clear link between chronic stress and a greater incidence of psychiatric disorders. Stress has also been linked to Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. It has even been shown to reduce the size of the brain. When we’re stressed, our focus tends to move inward. We overlook or deprioritize the people around us, including top talent, and how we interact with them.
So, here are four steps to reduce your stress and build a powerful talent pool. It’s well worth the effort. When you build an all-star team, you boost your potential and reduce your stress, setting yourself up for success.
1. Always be on the lookout for talent.
Talent is all around you. You just need to keep your eyes peeled and your ears open, both inside and beyond your company walls. You have a lot of tools at your disposal. Events, social gatherings and conferences are great places to source talent. You can ask your colleagues, friends and peers for recommendations. Look beyond the resume and remember that top talent is much more than high IQ. You should look for candidates who have empathy and emotional intelligence, or EQ, which is one of the most powerful predictors of career success. Individuals with a high EQ are able to handle pressure well, understand and cooperate with others, give and receive feedback constructively and engage in more effective decision-making. Research has shown that 75 percent of managers and HR professionals are more likely to promote an employee with a high EQ and lower IQ than an individual with a high IQ and lower EQ. But perhaps more important, strong EQ skills can reduce stress. What more could you ask for in a candidate? You want to be surrounded by people with high EQ levels, and you deserve to be. It’s important not to sell yourself short. And when you’re stressed, you’re be more likely to chase top candidates away because you won’t be able to present your company in a favorable light. You’re better than that. Finally, it’s important to remember that the hiring and recruiting should be ongoing. When you keep in touch with talent and have a shortlist of people who might become potential candidates one day, you can further reduce your stress levels because it gives you a vetted pool of talent to draw from at any time.
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