Marc Brackett at Kindness: How Emotional Intelligence Equals More Inspired Workplaces

We were thrilled to host Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence Founder and Director Marc Brackett at last month’s Kindness at Work symposium. Uniting art, science, live music, and VR simulation, the event is our annual celebration of inclusion and belonging at work.

We will be starting 2021 strong with the continuation of our weekly Future of Work Roundtable Series. These lively interactive sessions bring together thought leaders and professionals from a wide range of industries; we’d love to have you join us as the new year begins.

What does emotional intelligence have to do with it?

As it turns out, everything.

We discuss the confluence of emotional intelligence and the workplace quite a lot at Mursion — in fact, it’s one of the main reasons we exist as a company. Everything we do begins with empathy as a powerful leadership tool.

As Brackett stated during his Kindness talk, “The climate of a workplace is related to both physical and emotional health. Emotions are information.”


Emotions are information.

In his work with the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence as well as in his influential book Permission to Feel: Unlocking the Power of Emotions to Help Our Kids, Ourselves, and Our Society Thrive, Brackett clearly and concretely makes the case for developing one’s EQ in order to achieve success. RULER, his evidence-based approach to social and emotional learning (SEL), is an impactful way to learn these essential skills early on and in a collaborative way, supporting students, teachers, school systems, and communities in cultivating emotional intelligence.

In his Kindness talk, Brackett outlined the numerous benefits of developing leaders with high EQ levels, as well as the pitfalls of ignoring SEL in the workplace.

When an individual works for a leader who possesses higher emotional intelligence, the employee regularly experiences more pleasant emotions, which lead to:

  • 40% lower frustration levels
  • 30% less burnout
  • 30% higher job satisfaction
  • 40% more inspiration

As Brackett summarized: “If only companies would hire emotionally skilled people, they would have significantly greater employee retention.”

So, who is Marc Brackett?

As a researcher for more than 20 years, Brackett has focused on the role of emotions and emotional intelligence in learning, decision making, creativity, relationships, health, and performance. In addition to his work with the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, Brackett is also a Professor in the Child Study Center of Yale University. His revolutionary RULER program has been adopted by nearly 2,000 pre-K through high schools across the United States and in other countries. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning.


If only companies would hire emotionally skilled people, they would have significantly greater employee retention.


Brackett also consults regularly with corporations, such as Facebook, Microsoft, and Google, on integrating the principles of emotional intelligence into employee training and product design. Most recently, he co-founded Oji Life Lab, a corporate learning firm that develops innovative digital learning systems on emotional intelligence.

Brackett’s mission is to educate the world about the value of emotions and the skills associated with using them wisely. “I want everyone to become an emotion scientist,” he has said. “We need to be curious explorers of our own and others’ emotions so they can help us achieve our goals and improve our lives.”

Some meaningful quotes from Permission to Feel:

“Emotion regulation is not about not feeling. Neither is it exerting tight control over what we feel. And it’s not about banishing negative emotions and feeling only positive ones. Rather, emotion regulation starts with giving ourselves and others the permission to own our feelings — all of them.”

“The core skill of understanding is the search for the underlying theme or possible cause that fuels the emotion. We’re not asking questions and listening to answers just to provide a sympathetic ear. As we listen, we’re looking for a meaning that goes deeper than the words being said.”

“Too often we look for strategies that will shift people out of negative emotion spaces, but that’s not always possible. During difficult times, sometimes we just need to be there for one another.”