Some people develop emotional intelligence simply through living. They may learn life lessons the hard way (e.g., they blow up at a boss and get fired). They may be inspired by classes in philosophy, books, editorials, 12-Step groups, or religious services. They may be guided by wise parents, counselors, or mentors — or coached by wise friends. Sometimes a line in a book or a scene in a movie shows them the best way to behave; other times they’ll learn from a co-worker who deftly deals with a sticky situation.
And some people need, yes, a class. You can find classes at local community colleges, through local management associations, and also on line. For instance, Six Seconds offers classes designed to both certify managers in assessing emotional intelligence and teach community members to teach parents. There are also lots of consultants who offer assessment/training in emotional intelligence for individuals, departments, and entire companies. Warning: The prices can be steep, but the cost of botched relationships and not-so-ideal team work is also high.