How Does Emotional Intelligence Help in Closing More Deals?

Table of contents

  1. Emotional Intelligence and Its Role in Sales
  2. What is Emotional Intelligence?
  3. What is Sales EQ?
  4. Role of Emotional Intelligence in Sales
  5. Why Does Emotional Intelligence Matter in Sales?
  6. 8 Types of Emotional Intelligence and Its Role in Sales
  7. How to Build Emotional Intelligence Skills in Sales
  8. Practical Application in Sales
  9. Use AI-Powered Sentiment Analytics and Improve Sales Performance
  10. Sentiment Analytics With Goodmeetings
  11. How Goodmeetings Can Improve Emotional Intelligence Skills?

Want to know the secret to closing more deals? It’s emotional intelligence!

Sales success isn’t just about having a great product or service; it’s about understanding and connecting with customers on a deeper level.

Remember, you are selling to humans, and humans are emotional beings! That’s why your sales team needs both IQ and EQ to excel.

Studies show that salespeople with high emotional intelligence close more deals and build stronger customer relationships. According to research by TalentSmart, 90% of top performers have high emotional intelligence, earning an average of $29,000 more per year than their lower-EI peers.

In this article, we’ll explore the role of emotional intelligence in sales and provide tips to boost your sales team’s emotional intelligence skills.

Emotional Intelligence and Its Role in Sales

Sales and emotional intelligence have a direct relationship! You can’t do the first one well if you don’t have the second.

Let’s consider a scenario:

You’re in the market for a new smartphone. Two sales reps approach you with the same product.

  • The first one greets you warmly, asks about your preferences and listens attentively to your needs. They understand your worries about battery life and offer solutions tailored to you.
  • On the other hand, the second salesperson seemed disinterested and only provided basic information about the phone. They don’t engage with you emotionally.

So, who would you choose to buy from? The answer is clear! You’d prefer the one who connects with you emotionally. That’s the power of emotional intelligence in sales!

Emotional intelligence (EI) is a key factor in sales success, helping sales professionals,

  • Connect with customers
  • Understand their needs
  • Build lasting relationships

Did you know? EQ has been recognized as the key to personal and professional success since the 1960s.

Before we talk more about the role of emotional intelligence in sales, let’s first understand what it means.

Related: Sales Intelligence 101 – Definition, Tools and Best Practices

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Here’s a simple definition of emotional intelligence:

Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to perceive, use, understand, manage, and handle emotions. 

Let’s understand emotional intelligence on a deeper level!

Emotional Intelligence (EI) is about 2 things – understanding and handling emotions.

  • First, it’s about knowing and controlling your own feelings
  • Second, it’s about recognizing and affecting how others feel

Simply put, it means understanding and handling emotions well, both yours and others.

Daniel Goleman, a science writer, came up with the term “emotional intelligence” in the 1960s. He split it into five parts:

  • Self-awareness
  • Self-regulation
  • Social skills
  • Empathy
  • Motivation

People who are good at emotional intelligence often have a high emotional quotient (EQ). It is like a score that shows how good you are at this.

Related: 12 Best Conversational Intelligence Software 2024

What is Sales EQ?

Sales EQ, or Emotional Intelligence in Sales, refers to the ability of sales professionals to understand and manage emotions effectively during sales interactions. It means recognizing and responding to your own emotions and those of your customers to build trust and rapport.


If a customer is upset about a product problem, a salesperson with high Sales EQ will empathize, offer solutions, and reassure the customer. By using Sales EQ, salespeople can create positive experiences, build strong relationships, and increase sales.

Role of Emotional Intelligence in Sales

Emotional intelligence plays a crucial role in sales by enabling sales professionals to connect with customers on a deeper level. Here’s how:

  • Building Relationships: High EI helps salespeople build strong, lasting relationships with customers. By understanding and responding to customers’ emotions, they can create a more personalized and engaging experience.
  • Effective Communication: Sales professionals with high EI can communicate more effectively. They are better at listening, understanding customer concerns, and providing thoughtful responses, which helps in resolving issues and building trust.
  • Handling Objections: High EI enables salespeople to remain calm and composed when facing objections. They can empathize with the customer’s perspective and address concerns in a way that alleviates fears and builds confidence in the product or service.
  • Enhancing Persuasion: Understanding the emotional triggers that influence buying decisions allows salespeople to tailor their pitches more effectively. By appealing to the customer’s emotions, they can make a more compelling case for their product or service.
  • Improving Team Dynamics: Sales teams with high emotional intelligence collaborate better. They are more supportive of each other, handle stress more effectively, and create a positive work environment, leading to higher overall performance.

Related: 10 Best Sales Intelligence Software For 2024

Why Does Emotional Intelligence Matter in Sales?

Source: Goodmeetings

Did you know? In his book Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman found that over 85% of senior leaders succeed because of emotional intelligence, not just traditional intelligence.

Emotional intelligence is also crucial in sales. In one study, sales managers and reps went through a training program to boost their emotional intelligence. As a result, total sales revenue went up by an average of 12%.

Here’s why you should use emotional intelligence for sales success:

1. Helps to Overcome Objections

Handling objections is easier with emotional intelligence. Each customer has unique needs and concerns. By empathizing and understanding their points of view, you can address their issues better.

People who self-regulate well see objections as opportunities, not negatives. They understand that objections highlight areas to improve. Smart, positive salespeople turn objections into sales by planning ahead to address common concerns.

2. Builds Trust Through Rapport

Building rapport with new leads and customers requires a personal touch. Salespeople with strong social skills are better at getting prospects to talk about their needs and building trust-based relationships. Self-aware salespeople know when to adjust their approach. Empathetic salespeople read signals better and adapt their pitches accordingly.

3. Helps to Deal With Rejection

Rejection is a part of sales, but high-EQ salespeople don’t take it personally. They understand a “no” isn’t a rejection of them. They’re less likely to get stressed or upset and see rejection as a chance to improve their skills. Emotionally intelligent people stay motivated and keep trying, even after setbacks. They seek training or mentorship to get better.

4. Maintains Professionalism

A salesperson who is self-aware and can self-regulate will manage feelings of fear, anxiety, and irritation while talking to customers. High-EQ salespeople remain calm, confident, and competent, projecting a professional image. Their excellent social skills help them defuse tense situations with empathy or humor, putting prospects at ease.

Related: Identifying Triggers & buying Signals in B2B sales calls

5. Boosts Customer Retention

Emotional intelligence is key to customer retention. By emotionally connecting with customers, you build strong, lasting relationships. Loyal customers support your business not just through transactions but also by recommending you to others.

6. Helps to Manage Stress

EQ equips salespeople with the resilience to navigate challenging situations without becoming overwhelmed. This capability allows them to maintain composure and effectiveness even in high-pressure environments.

7. Improves Conflict Resolution

Emotional intelligence helps salespeople solve problems by understanding where other people are coming from. It’s like being able to find solutions that make everyone happy when there’s a disagreement.

8. Boosts Problem-Solving Skills

Emotional intelligence helps salespeople handle problems in smart and flexible ways. It lets them come up with new ideas and figure out good solutions to tough situations, making sure things go well in different circumstances.

Related: 10 Critical Sales Communication Skills For Success in 2024

9. Enhances Communication Skills

Effective communication is at the heart of successful sales. Salespeople with high emotional intelligence can express themselves clearly and persuasively while also being attentive listeners. They understand the importance of nonverbal cues, tone of voice, and body language in conveying messages effectively.

10. Facilitates Collaboration

Sales rarely happen in isolation. Often, they require collaboration with various internal teams such as marketing, product development, and customer support. Salespeople with high emotional intelligence excel at collaborating with colleagues, fostering teamwork, and leveraging collective strengths to achieve common goals.

11. Strengthens Leadership Abilities

In sales roles, leadership isn’t just about managing teams; it’s also about inspiring and motivating others toward common objectives. Sales leaders with high emotional intelligence can effectively inspire their teams, provide constructive feedback, and resolve conflicts, fostering a positive and productive work environment.

12. Promotes Personal Growth

Finally, emotional intelligence in sales isn’t just about driving revenue; it’s also about personal growth and development. Salespeople who actively cultivate their emotional intelligence skills become more self-aware, resilient, and adaptable individuals, capable of thriving in both their professional and personal lives.

Related: AI Sales Cold Calling – Benefits, Use Cases, Tools and Best Practices

8 Types of Emotional Intelligence and Its Role in Sales

Emotional intelligence (EI) includes various skills that help people understand, control, and express emotions well. In the context of sales, different types of emotional intelligence play crucial roles in various aspects of the sales process.

Here are some key types of emotional intelligence for sales success

1. Self-Awareness

This involves recognizing and understanding one’s own emotions, strengths, weaknesses, and how they affect others.

In sales, self-awareness helps salespeople understand their selling style, motivations, and how they come across to clients. It enables them to adapt their approach and behaviors to build rapport and trust with customers effectively.

2. Self-Regulation

Self-regulation is the ability to manage and control one’s emotions, impulses, and behaviors. This type of emotional intelligence in sales allows salespeople to stay calm, composed, and focused, even in high-pressure situations such as handling objections or negotiating deals.

It prevents emotional reactions that could jeopardize relationships with clients and helps maintain professionalism and credibility.

3. Motivation

Motivation is the inner push that keeps salespeople going. It’s what drives them to set goals and work hard to achieve them. In sales, staying motivated helps salespeople stay focused and energetic, even when things get tough. It’s what keeps them going, striving to reach their targets and succeed in their sales efforts.

Related: A Complete Guide to Sales Call Reporting: Tips, Templates & Tools

4. Social Awareness (Empathy)

Social awareness involves understanding the emotions, needs, and concerns of others. Empathy, a key component of social awareness, is particularly important in sales as it enables salespeople to put themselves in their clients’ shoes, understand their perspectives, and tailor their approach accordingly.

Empathetic salespeople can build stronger rapport, anticipate customer needs, and provide personalized solutions, leading to better outcomes.

5. Listening

Listening involves paying attention to what others are saying, both verbally and nonverbally. This type of emotional intelligence in sales is essential for understanding customer needs, concerns, and preferences.

By actively listening to clients, salespeople can gather valuable information, identify opportunities, and tailor their approach to better meet customer expectations. Good listening skills also help build trust and rapport with clients, as they feel heard and understood, leading to more successful sales interactions.

6. Relationship Management

Relationship management is the ability to build and maintain positive relationships with others. In sales, relationship management involves effectively communicating, collaborating, and resolving conflicts with clients and colleagues.

Salespeople who excel in relationship management can establish trust, handle objections diplomatically, and navigate complex negotiations, ultimately fostering long-term customer loyalty and satisfaction.

Related: What is a Sales Discovery Call? – Questions, Process and Template

7. Emotional Perception and Expression

Emotional perception refers to the ability to accurately perceive and interpret emotions in oneself and others, while emotional expression involves effectively expressing one’s own emotions.

In sales, being able to accurately read clients’ verbal and nonverbal cues, such as body language and tone of voice, helps salespeople understand their needs and tailor their communication style accordingly.

Likewise, being able to express emotions authentically, such as enthusiasm or concern, can strengthen connections with clients and convey sincerity and empathy.

8. Resilience

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from setbacks, adapt to change, and persevere in the face of adversity. This type of emotional intelligence in sales is crucial for dealing with rejection, overcoming obstacles, and maintaining motivation and confidence.

Resilient salespeople see problems as chances to learn, keep trying even when it’s hard, and always aim to get better. This helps them do well in sales.

Related: Complete Guide To Conversational AI for Sales

How to Build Emotional Intelligence Skills in Sales

Building emotional intelligence (EI) skills in sales involves deliberate practice and conscious effort. Here are some strategies to develop emotional intelligence for sales success:

1. Practice Self-Awareness

  • Reflect Regularly: Take time to think about your emotions, strengths, and weaknesses. Keep a journal to note down your feelings and reactions in different sales situations.
  • Seek Feedback: Ask colleagues, mentors, or supervisors for honest feedback on your interactions and selling style. Use this feedback to understand how you come across to others and make necessary adjustments.

2. Enhance Self-Regulation

  • Pause Before Reacting: When faced with a challenging situation, take a moment to breathe and collect your thoughts before responding. This helps in managing immediate emotional reactions.
  • Develop Coping Strategies: Learn techniques such as deep breathing, mindfulness, or taking short breaks to help stay calm and composed during high-pressure situations.

3. Motivation

  • Find Intrinsic Motivation: Identify what personally drives you in your sales career beyond external rewards like commissions. Set personal benchmarks for success that align with your values and passions.
  • Maintain a Positive Attitude: Cultivate a positive mindset by focusing on successes and learning from failures. Use visualization techniques to imagine successful interactions and outcomes.

Related: 12 Best Sales Analytics Software To Measure Sales Performance

4. Improve Social Awareness (Empathy)

  • Practice Active Listening: Focus fully on the speaker, avoid interrupting, and ask clarifying questions to ensure you understand their perspective. This shows empathy and builds rapport.
  • Observe Body Language: Pay attention to nonverbal cues such as facial expressions, gestures, and tone of voice to better understand how clients are feeling.

5. Strengthen Relationship Management

  • Communicate Clearly and Effectively: Use simple and straightforward language. Be honest and transparent in your communications to build trust.
  • Resolve Conflicts Diplomatically: When disagreements arise, approach them calmly and look for win-win solutions. Listen to the other party’s concerns and work collaboratively to find common ground.

6. Develop Emotional Perception and Expression

  • Be Authentic: Express your emotions genuinely and appropriately. For example, show enthusiasm when discussing benefits and concern when addressing a client’s problem.
  • Read Nonverbal Cues: Improve your ability to read and interpret body language, facial expressions, and other nonverbal signals to better understand clients’ needs and feelings.

Related: 15 Best Sales Automation Tools to Boost Your Revenue in 2024

7. Build Resilience

  • Stay Positive: Maintain a positive attitude, even when facing setbacks. Focus on what you can learn from each experience.
  • Set Realistic Goals: Break down larger goals into smaller, achievable steps to maintain motivation and track progress. Celebrate small wins to keep yourself motivated.

8. Improve Listening Skills

  • Be Fully Present: When talking to a client, focus entirely on them. Avoid distractions and show that you are engaged in the conversation.
  • Summarize and Reflect: After the client has spoken, summarize what they said to ensure understanding and show that you are listening.

Related: 40+ ChatGPT Prompts To Supercharge Your Sales

Practical Application in Sales

Implementing emotional intelligence in sales involves practical, hands-on strategies that can be integrated into daily routines. Here are some actionable steps to enhance your EI skills in real-world sales scenarios:

1. Role-Playing Scenarios

  • Participate in role-playing exercises to practice handling various sales situations with emotional intelligence.
  • Simulate different customer interactions, including handling objections and closing deals, to refine your approach.

2. Continuous Learning

  • Attend workshops and training sessions focused on emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills.
  • Read books and articles on emotional intelligence, applying new strategies to your sales techniques.

3. Mentorship and Coaching

  • Work with a mentor or coach to develop your emotional intelligence skills, seeking guidance and feedback on your progress.
  • Observe and learn from successful salespeople who demonstrate high emotional intelligence.

Related: How to Use AI For Sales Training – Tools and Best Practices

Use AI-Powered Sentiment Analytics and Improve Sales Performance

One of the most effective ways to apply emotional intelligence in sales is by analyzing the sentiments or emotions of the prospect or customer.

But let’s face it, sales reps have varying levels of emotional intelligence. While some excel naturally at reading emotions, others may need additional support.

Fortunately, AI-powered tools for sentiment analysis, such as Goodmeetings, can bridge this gap.

Sentiment Analytics With Goodmeetings

Goodmeetings is an AI-powered tool developed for sales teams. It helps you to record, transcribe, summarize as well as analyze online sales meetings and calls.

With its sentiment analysis feature, Goodmeetings can detect the emotional tone of the conversation, providing insights into how the customer feels at different points during the interaction.

This allows sales reps to adjust their strategies in real time, respond more empathetically, and address concerns more effectively.

By using these insights, sales teams can enhance their emotional intelligence, improve customer relationships, and ultimately boost their sales performance.

Related: Getting Started with the Goodmeetings Notetaker

How Goodmeetings Can Improve Emotional Intelligence Skills?

  • Call Recording and Transcriptions: Allows sales reps to review interactions and identify areas for improving empathy and responsiveness.
  • Sentiment Analysis: Provides insights into the emotional tone of conversations, helping reps adjust their approach in real time.
  • Automated Action Items and Summaries: Frees up time for reps to focus on building relationships by handling routine tasks.
  • Real-Time Coaching: Offers instant feedback on emotional cues, enabling reps to adapt their behavior on the spot.
  • Screenshare Analytics: Helps reps understand customer engagement and reactions, refining their approach.
  • Meeting Performance Insights: Highlights strengths and areas for improvement, fostering better customer interactions.
  • CRM Integration: Ensures emotional intelligence insights are incorporated into broader sales strategies for consistent, personalized service.

Goodmeetings equips sales reps with the tools to improve their emotional intelligence, leading to deeper customer connections and improved sales outcomes.

What’s best is that you can try it out for free with its 7-day free trial offer. Moreover, you can also request a free demo to see how Goodmeetings works!

Source: Goodmeetings


Boost Your Sales Team’s EQ With Goodmeetings!

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