Some argue that EQ is more important in the work place than IQ. In the work place, there are constant interactions which are occurring among the people who work there. While some of these interactions are positive, others are negative.
The key aspect, managers and company leaders must understand is that over time, each of these interactions will have a positive or negative effect on the company as a whole.
The effect that these interactions have on the company will also have an effect on the company’s ability to remain competitive in its given market or industry. Having said that, the key fact that must be considered in order to make these interactions more positive is emotional intelligence. Humans are emotional creatures, and this is the first key towards understanding EI.
In the past, companies and educational institutions paid an undue amount of attention to one’s IQ, or their general intelligence quotient. While IQ is important to some extent, few corporations take the time to measure one’s emotional intelligence.
EI is equal or greater in importance to IQ simply because people who work for organizations must be expected to get along with the people they work with. If they are managers, they must be effective in working with and managing the employees.
It means little for a person to have an IQ of 180 if they cannot relate to anyone, they do not put anyone at ease, they’re not composed, and they’re not calm during a crisis.
Effective management has become a critical issue in the 21st century. One reason for this is because we live in a day and age where more corporations are downsizing in order to compete on the international playing field.
The United States, once one of the most powerful manufacturing countries in the world, is now being transformed in an economy that is service based, and what this means is that interpersonal relationships must be emphasized above all else.
Relationships must be maintained between upper managers and lower managers, as well as lower managers and employees. There are a number of skills which have become crucial for the work place.
Critical 21st Century Work Place Skills
Some of the skills that managers and employees will need to thrive in the current environment includes communicating with each other and discussing topics openly, listening to the issues that are expressed by other parties, being able to effectively manage conflict, and inspiring each other to operate at a higher level.
Equally important is an organization’s ability to deal with and handle change, which today and always is inevitable. It is also crucial for organizations to be able to share and work towards goals.
As you can imagine, emotional intelligence is directly connected to one’s ability to do all the things listed above in this paragraph. It is EQ, not IQ, that is most important.
Some critics have attacked the concept of EQ, saying that "it doesn’t exist or that it is not relevant in our society." This people are clearly wrong, and do not have a basic understanding of human psychology. If you can understand the fact that humans tend to be emotional, than EQ makes perfect sense.
Cold hard analytical logic has its place, but it should never be emphasized over the emotional aspect of human interactions. Why is it that some of the greatest (and most infamous) leaders in history have all been people who were able to tap into the emotions of their followers? The answer is that these individuals were blessed with a high EQ. However, the good news is that it can be developed, even if you don’t have it naturally.
EQ is a Skill that can be Developed
Just as IQ is set in stone, EQ is not set in stone either. Yes, it is true that some people are born with this natural gift, and tend to succeed more in leadership positions than others. However, anyone can increase their EQ, and this is important because it will allow them to perform better in the work place.
Organizations and companies which choose to begin developing the EQ skills of their employees are likely to build a group cohesion which will make them highly effective against both regional as well as global competition.