Why Is EQ More Important than IQ?
The concept of an intelligence quotient is long-lived and still utilized today. It involves a score defined by a variety of tests used to evaluate intelligence. The original term was invented by psychologist William Stern in 1912. The mental age score achieved on the test was then divided by chronological age to create a fraction to be multiplied by 100. Modern IQ tests are scored differently with most adults achieving between 85 and 115. An extremely low number of people score above 130 and below 70.
This long-running determination of a person’s mental value began to change as the concept of emotional intelligence and an emotional quotient came into the picture. This brought to the forefront the understanding that how we feel and the way we manage those feelings is just as important as book smarts.
At Sandbox Centre, we serve local businesses here in Ontario, Canada. Working with start-ups, entrepreneurs, and small businesses, we see plenty of companies seeking professional development in the area of emotional intelligence. Offering resources, connections, and peer to peer networking, Sandbox Centre understands better than most the effort put forth to control emotion and meet business needs head-on.
Throughout this article, we’ll break down the true definition of EQ, when it was first discovered, how to measure it, and what role it plays in the Canadian workplace.
What is EQ?
EQ is an abbreviation for the term emotional quotient, a measurement of one’s ability to recognize and control emotions. It is also called EI or emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence involves more than your own emotions, for a good leader, it also means noticing the emotions of those around you and dealing with them accordingly.
Emotional intelligence plays an important role in most office buildings, as it governs the way we react in any given situation. Whether you’ve experienced a financial blow or received a promotion, there are right and wrong ways to react. One of the important aspects of emotional intelligence in the workplace is knowing when you are experiencing an emotion and keeping calm. There are highs and lows to every business experience but maintaining a vigilant front of positivity is key.
Once you’ve mastered EQ you can use it in any situation and teach others to manage their emotional intelligence as well. Working together as a team, emotional development exercises are an excellent way to increase morale, get to know one another, and nip the potential for irresponsible emotional responses in the workplace.
Where did the Term Emotional Intelligence Come From?
Daniel Goleman is often thought to be the father of the emotional intelligence movement. While he is a thought leader in the field of EQ, his work was largely based on information gained from two other psychologists working on a similar theory in the early 1990’s. Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer are thought to have developed the term, “emotional intelligence”, using it in a publication to describe a new evolution of social intelligence.
These two eventually partnered with a third psychologist, Dr. David R. Caruso. Together they created an EQ test that expressed your score based on several categories relating to mental health, personal awareness, social awareness, empathy, and more. The test was designed between the universities of Yale and New Hampshire and is still used to this day to determine emotional intelligence levels for business purposes.
Following the development of the EQ concept, Daniel Goleman built onto Salovey and Mayer’s work to write the book, Emotional Intelligence, published in 1995. A writer for the New York Times, and a psychology graduate of Harvard University, Goleman was fed up with how little IQ tests and similar cognitive studies told us about our potential in business.
Goleman also believed that having high EQ increased happiness at work and at home. When you consider the outcomes of emotional intelligence as being able to manage emotions and cope with the emotions of others this makes perfect sense. Thus, introducing EQ to the Canadian workforce is beneficial to everyone involved.
How is EQ Measured?
EQ like IQ has a test from which you can derive your emotional intelligence level. There are many different tests now, making it difficult to pinpoint a standardized test by which to rank yourself and your employees. The Emotional Quotient Inventory, or EQI, now EQI-2 is one of the most popular EQ tests around. It measures results based on responses to 133 statements with an answer of how strongly you agree or disagree.
The test is said to take no more than twenty minutes to complete and covers a variety of sub-topics such as self-expression, stress management, decision making, interpersonal, and self-perception. The online test supplies a lengthy analysis of your current social and emotional health, which can then be used to conduct professional development courses and EQ strengthening exercises.
The original EQ test created by Mayer, Salovey, and Caruso is another option for the development of leadership skills and advanced emotional intelligence. This test takes up to 45-minutes to complete and consists of 141 questions or statements to rate. The test is available in multiple languages and each question and answer is ranked by leaders within the EQ field.
In a test with responses of:
- Strongly agree
- Neither agree nor disagree
- Strongly disagree
Questions or statements might look like this:
- In the workplace, you respond to all social situations with positivity.
- When confronted with a problem you react emotionally out of instinct.
- Negative confrontation makes you nervous.
In other tests, such as the Mayer, Salovey, Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test, questions come from many different categories and include:
- Comparing emotions to sensations or colours.
- Predicting emotional reactions in others based on a situation.
- Deciding on the best emotional strategy in social relationships.
The test includes a multiple-choice section, fill in the blanks, and more.
It can be tricky to determine which test is best. Some businesses choose to invest in their own tests, using questions or statements relevant to their industry and roles. The test is meant to shine a light on areas of social and emotional weaknesses so they may be strengthened.
How is it Recognized in the Workplace?
Emotional intelligence takes on different forms depending on where you are and the situation that you’re taking part in. In the workplace it might look like:
- The ability to recognize emotions in others.
- Maintaining a positive attitude during a personal evaluation.
- Staying emotionally aware when goals are missed, and emotions are high.
- Being able to successfully problem solve despite high-stress situations.
- Building trust with team members by avoiding conflict.
- Maintaining good communication skills while under pressure.
When EQ is low, you can feel it and see it in yourself and others. A lack of emotional intelligence manifests as:
- Yelling at a rude customer.
- Becoming defensive following constructive criticism.
- Invading a teammate’s personal space.
- Cracking under the pressure of a complicated task.
- Low tolerance for high-stress situations.
- Poor mental health because of a lack of self-care.
You may notice some of these traits and instincts in yourself, or they may be brought to light by management. When low EQ causes problems, you may be able to pinpoint specific causes and work on long term solutions. For instance, finding it tough to share your thoughts or concerns about an upcoming project with a teammate could be a combination of anxiety and not knowing how to breach the subject. Recognizing anxiety is a good start. Now you can practice relaxation and breathing methods to control those feelings at work. For communicating feelings about a project, taking a few communication skill-building courses will help you feel more confident.
Many workplaces are beginning to see the advantages of implementing EQ professional development courses. Speaking to a manager about making EQ part of your standard prof dev time could help everyone develop new soft skills and high emotional intelligence.
Why a Leader Needs More Than a High IQ
In any Canadian office space, there’s a need for book smarts up to a point. Many people receive college or university educations, specialty training, certificates, diplomas, internships, or apprenticeships to become successful in their chosen fields. Even with all this education and training, there’s no guarantee for success. This is due to the amount of social interactions and emotions within every workplace.
Let’s face it, no matter how much you love your job, at the week you’re exhausted so TGIF! Sometimes being tired puts us in a weak state of mind emotionally. When trouble hits, it suddenly becomes more difficult for us to deal with things inside before we deal with them outside. This is a big part of what emotional intelligence provides to you.
Have you ever been in an argument with somebody, yelled and said things you shouldn’t? About an hour later you’ll think of all kinds of great comebacks, or you’ll blush thinking, “I can’t believe I lost control like that.” This is because in that moment your emotional quotient dropped, you fell victim to impulse and gut instinct, and anger got the better of you. It happens to us all. Imagine if we let that sort of behaviour take over in the office. There would be a lot of awkward faces in the break room come Monday morning.
You see, no matter how many books you read, degrees you earn, or business mentorships you’ve undergone, without a strong understanding of your emotional needs and the emotional needs of others, your IQ won’t come in very helpful.
EQ as a Leadership Quality
Leadership is a highly emotional role, it requires training, evaluating, reporting, and meeting targets. Managing a team means overseeing all the efforts of the individuals involved. This requires good time management, and a whole new skill set as far as emotional intelligence goes. A great leader must be in control of their emotions even when others are not.
Whether you’re speaking to employees you manage, or your own manager, having the ability to hold emotions in check, and read the room is highly advantageous. It allows you to appear reserved, professional and knowledgeable, even when the situation is tense. It also helps you respond to others and creates an air of approachability.
Leadership roles are often considered analytical, but there’s plenty to get emotional about when the actions of an entire group of people fall on your head. It’s tough sometimes to remember that the actions of your team aren’t intentional. When a target gets missed or someone calls in sick, it reflects poorly on your team stats and your management style. Retaining your cool and turning that negative into a learning experience is what makes effective leaders so effective.
Strong leaders possessing emotional intelligence can process problems quicker than those who give into Freud’s “Id”. Having a high EQ encourages motivation, participation, and communication. Teams run more smoothly, express themselves more professionally, and are more successful overall. Developing this leadership trait takes time but is worth the effort.
Learn New EQ Skills at Sandbox Centre
Sandbox Centre has a soft spot for emotional intelligence support. It has quickly become one of the most essential tools in any employee’s skill set. If you’re interested in learning more about EQ or are seeking connections and resources to get you started on professional development for EQ through our CNNX Groups.
Sandbox Center is located at 24 Maple Avenue in Barrie, Ontario. As a local Barrie community, we pride ourselves on having the opportunity to serve friends and neighbours right here in town. Supporting local businesses helps us all create a more stable environment for future businesses and the long-term Barrie economy. We’re always happy to see new and returning faces, so if you’re in the neighbourhood, please stop by. We always have a varied selection of guest speakers and special projects on the go.
You can also visit our official site for a list of upcoming training, speakers, or to get connected with peer-to-peer networking. Contact Sandbox Centre for more information at email@example.com 705.503.6600 www.sandboxcentre.com and join the Sandbox community on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.