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When was the last time you considered your EQ score?

By Victoria Brown

By Victoria Brown

This week, Victoria discusses Emotional Intelligence and why studies have found that it can predict better job performance in employees.

Did you know that many companies often look for signs of emotional intelligence (EQ) when hiring? Why? Years of studies reveal that emotional intelligence predicts better job performance (Boyle et al, 2011). When it comes to happiness and success in life your EQ matters just as much as IQ.

What is Emotional Intelligence?

Emotional Intelligence is the ability to understand, use and manage your own emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate effectively, emphasise with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict.

According to the well- known psychologist Daniel Goleman, emotional intelligence is commonly defined by four attributes;

Self-Management – Ability to control impulsive feelings and behaviours, manage emotions in a healthy way, take initiative, follow through on commitments and adapt to changing circumstances.

Self-Awareness – Ability to recognise emotions and how they affect thoughts and behaviour.  Knowing strengths and weaknesses.

Social Awareness – Having empathy.  The ability to understand the emotions, needs and concerns of other people, pick up on emotional cues and feel comfortable socially.

-Relationship Management – Ability to develop and maintain good relationships, communicate clearly, inspire and influence others, work well in a team and manage conflict.

You can probably think of people that you know that are academically brilliant but socially inept. 

So how do we spot an employee within our business with high EQ?  Here are a few signs;

-Having empathy for other people

-Being able to accept criticism and responsibility

-Being able to say no when needed to

-Being able to share feelings with others

-Having great listening skills

– Being able to move on after making a mistake

The benefits of having employees within your business with high EQ results is a productive, engaged, great place to work.  However, for those organisations with a lack of emotional intelligence, there can be some negative results, particularly in relation to communication and decision making.  Here are some examples of the challenges you may relate to within your business with certain employees;

-Lack of understanding of own emotions and that of others

-Poor communication of ideas and emotions to colleagues

-Inappropriate communication, such as outbursts of emotion, oversharing or failing to communicate valuable information.

How can we improve Emotional Intelligence in business?

There are lots of online questionnaires out there these days that you can use within a recruitment process to measure this.  However, what do you do with your existing employees?  I would suggest that you start from the top – your Leaders.

Emotional Intelligence is most effective and impactful when applied from the top.  A Leader that embodies and practices high EQ will communicate and interact in a way which will cascade from the top through the business.  The utilisation of effective communication of the vision and values of the business plays a key role.

Victoria is the MD of High Performance Consultancy (HPC), providing HR and H&S Consultancy services across the UK.  If you would like to discuss further any HR or H&S needs then please contact or call 0844 800 5932 for a chat.

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