Jeff Bezos just published a 4,000-word statement to Congress. It’s a master class in emotional intelligence

Viewed in Inc.

This past July, four of big technology’s chief executives—Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Apple’s Tim Cook, Facebook’s  Mark Zuckerberg, and Google’s Sundar Pinchai—were summoned to appear before the U.S. Congress.

Each also submitted written statements. But at 4.540 words, Bezos’ written statement was both the longest and most remarkable.

Inc. contributing writer Justin Bariso observes that Bezos’ statement is notable for the lessons it “teaches in emotional intelligence—both for good and quite possibly evil.”

Masterpiece in storytelling

Bezos’ statement was somewhat atypical for a Fortune 500 business executive because it drew not on the traditionally dry executive summaries but heavily on emotional appeal and personal storytelling, including summaries of Bezos’ upbringing in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he was adopted by a Cuban immigrant father who spoke no English but offset that with “a lot of grit and determination.”  

Empathy, trust and critic acceptance

Bezos applies similar emotional appeals and storytelling throughout his Congressional statement, including in summarizing Amazon’s business model and accomplishments. It’s an effective means of communication, Bariso contends.

Detecting emotional intelligence

Yet, as he also writes, it also can run the risk of being deceptive for those on the receiving end. And yet, it’s extremely valuable. “Because the more you can recognize what emotional intelligence looks like, the more you can build your own.”  

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