Emotional Intelligence: Do You Have What it Takes?

emotional intelligence
Your intelligence quotient, or IQ, used to be the number everyone wished was higher. Employers took IQ heavily into account when interviewing new talent. Determining intelligence with a standard test and set scale seemed reasonable. Recently, a new intelligence score has begun to take precedence in the professional world. Emotional intelligence is the is the ability to control, harness and direct your emotions in productive and thoughtful ways.

Emotional intelligence, or EQ, is comprised of things like social abilities, self-awareness, time management, self-control and other internal characteristics. Not being able to keep calm or manage emotions in the correct way can cause major setbacks in a workplace. Studies show those with higher emotional intelligence will perform 70 percent better than those with a high IQ. Emotional intelligence can be measured by taking a special test, just as IQ is measured, but the questions are emotion-based.

How can job seekers improve emotional intelligence?

Unlike IQ, which stays the same whether you’re 12 or 80, emotional intelligence has the ability to be improved. Actively taking note of your emotions and checking in with yourself is one way to improve your emotional intelligence. Other ways include promoting happiness and investing in professional development by reading industry books or attending events. Improving your emotional intelligence will improve your chances of landing your dream job, and it will help improve non-work related relationships. Luckily, with a little effort, improvements can be made so you can strive for high emotional intelligence on your next job screen.

How can recruiters use emotional intelligence to place job seekers?

Recruiters are able to determine emotional intelligence of applicants by screening them with an emotional intelligence test or even a face-to-face interview. During an interview or in-person screening, body language and mannerisms can help decipher an applicant’s emotional intelligence. Recruiters should use emotional intelligence to their advantage and place people accordingly depending on their score. The company a recruiter is working with will be more satisfied with a candidate who meets their needs based on IQ and EQ. New hires with high emotional intelligence have higher retention rates after being placed.

Why companies should take emotional intelligence into account when hiring

Emotional intelligence makes a significant difference in the quality of work produced and morale of employees as a whole. TalentSmart survey findings concluded emotional intelligence as the strongest predictor of performance. Not only do employees with high emotional intelligence perform higher and at faster rates versus those with a high IQ, they have higher retention rates as well. In a managerial position or higher, it is important to be able to solve problems with self-control and a level head.

Whether you are a job seeker, recruiter or hiring manager, emotional intelligence should be on your radar. It’s become an increasingly important metric and is something that can consistently be improved upon. Taking emotional intelligence into account can make a big difference in employee morale, production and your bottom line.

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