EQ, short for emotional quotient, is a term coined by Daniel Goleman indicating a measure of one’s abilities in the areas of self awareness, empathy and dealing sensitively with others. It’s commonly referred to as emotional intelligence.
EQ has become so highly valued by employers that it has eclipsed and made practically obsolete the use of IQ testing. Why is that? Dr. Goleman puts it this way:
“The criteria for success at work are changing. We are being judged by a new yardstick: not just by how smart we are, or by our training and expertise, but also by how we handle ourselves…”
It’s no longer enough to know how to do a good job; how we treat others is just as important. Working in the staffing industry for more than 15 years, I can attest to this change.
The table below contrasts low EQ words and behaviours with those of a more highly developed person.
|Low EQ Words and Behaviours||High EQ Words and Behaviours|
|“I wouldn’t have all these problems if the people around me were smarter.”||High EQ people know that we all play a role in our problems in one way or another. They seek to identify their contribution first, before pointing the finger at others. They’re quick to make adjustments to improve the situation for everyone.|
|“I am who I am. I don’t change for anyone. If you don’t like me the way I am, screw you.”||People high in EQ shift according to the needs of each situation. They have sufficient self esteem to realize that adjusting their behaviours doesn’t make them a chump. Being flexible is a great way to show up as a sincere partner and contributor.|
|Sulking. Giving someone the silent treatment to show displeasure.||Emotional intelligence helps immensely in getting a point across in a way that doesn’t alienate others. Sulking, pouting or other adolescent behaviour will get you labelled as immature and emotional; neither of which will help your career or your relationships.|
|“I tell it like it is. I don’t sugar coat anything.”||EQ is all about communicating with sensitivity to get better results – but it doesn’t mean we avoid delivering difficult messages. There are ways to help co-workers or directs see blind spots or correct problems without leaving a swath of damage. It all starts by putting the other guy first.|