What is emotional Intelligence? It’s to recognise, discern between, manage and express emotions appropriately
Why is Emotional Intelligence (EI/ EQ) important?
Emotions communicate experiences, illuminate our awareness and help interpret our world. Emotions drive us to either recognise or make changes. Tapping into emotional experiences gives us essential information that keeps us living and working to the best of our abilities and open to opportunities. Developing emotional intelligence moves us towards success and fulfilment, yet few prioritise this. That’s a mistake.
Difference between EQ & IQ?
IQ, on the other hand, does none of these things. IQ tests deal with intellectual, reasoning abilities, something quite different. Although incredibly valuable, IQ by itself tells us nothing about our sensory information. IQ isn’t correlated to success or wellbeing. Our intellectual & emotional functions need to work together to understand the value of things and what serves us best. IQ is being replaced by EQ and EQ testing as the way to identify and build winning skills.
What is Emotion?
Our definition: “We experience and perceive things through our emotions. Our senses collect raw sensory data, but emotions help make sense of it. Each emotion has a specific meaning directing us to either recognise or make a change. Emotions have an expressive and behavioural element that helps us discern, manage, communicate the meaning of emotions. Understanding, mastering and applying emotions appropriately bring success and wellbeing”. Our ‘5 purposes of emotion’ model helps explain how we use emotions;
5 Purposes of Emotion
Emotions help us calibrate experiences to move towards needs & away from threats
Emotions working with cognition, provide the meaning & reasoning behind decision-making
Motivation & appreciation
Communication & connection
Emotions enable us to value & understand others to build effective relationships
Learning & beliefs
Emotions facilitate automated thinking & behaviours, saving time & energy, though limits judgement & presence
Emotional Intelligence Testing
To truly understand EQ, it means building it for yourself. Leverage your EQ to bring out the potential of you and your teams.
- Build essential leadership skills
- Build engaged teams and leaders
- Pin-point the skills that matter for roles
- Identify and develop high performers
Are emotions good for us?
Being open to emotions
Emotions are more important than most people realise. Being open to emotions allows us to monitor them and draw out the precious information – the message – that each emotion has for us. Emotions help us to understand what’s going on, to discern what’s appropriate and useful. They help us spot old stories being triggered and played out too. Learning such things allows us to take greater responsibility and to emotionally grow. This is the route to emotional freedom. TIP: Whilst always respecting yourself and others, nurture a mindset of emotions being neither good nor bad, just messages to accept and learn from.
Connecting mind and body
Working with our emotions means working with our mind and body. They work together, though historically psychologists and psychiatrists focussed on the mind whilst doctors and surgeons, the body as if they were not connected. However, the mind and body deeply affect each other. Increasingly we realise that holistic approaches (that consider both) are essential to support and develop people more effectively.
TIP: For syncing mind and body. Notice your breathing, its depth, the speed, movement, placement, it’s the effect on your sensations. In particular, notice your out-breath as this is what connects and calms us and switches on our relaxation response. Notice your voice when you speak, your movements, and what happens to them when you start noticing. This helps us connect to our body, slows us down and facilitates thinking and expressing ourselves more clearly. This encourages us to take more considered, effective actions.
If you want to develop the right skills, recruit the best people, perform at a higher level, EQ testing can show you the way as it reveals how you use emotions and specifically what to develop. Remember personality or IQ tests do not correlate to these development needs. EQ tests do.
Is EQ as important as IQ?
EQ V’s IQ
For over 100 years IQ was the accepted measure of intelligence. IQ relates to things like verbal reasoning, mathematical ability and memory. Although an incredibly important set of skills, IQ does not relate to our overall understanding and management of ourselves. It tells us little about context or relationships or the bigger picture because we need to know the value of something to measure and manage it. And our valuing of things is determined by our feelings, beliefs and values.
True intelligence can be thought of as the balance of thought and emotion, head and heart working together that facilitates our ability to adapt to change. Unsurprisingly organisations increasingly turn to EQ rather than IQ to profile and test for the skills that matter to them, to increase work performance. Research increasingly reflects the importance of emotional intelligence in high performance.
Are emotions bad for us?
Don’t shoot the messenger
It’s true, emotions can get us into trouble sometimes, but this is when we don’t acknowledge, understand, express or manage them appropriately. Often children are encouraged to ignore, devalue or suppress emotions or are not supported in working through uncomfortable or complex feelings. People need to be encouraged to connect with and express emotions, appropriately, as hiding from our emotions is counter-productive and unhealthy.
We experience feelings for good reason.
Recent Neuroscience research supports what therapists have been saying for years, (University of California research on ‘Affect labelling’). Connecting to and expressing, in particular negative, experiences calms our brain (specifically the amygdala) and helps connect us to what’s important to us.
Q: What are the components of emotional intelligence?
A: Depending on the EQ model used, EQ components vary slightly. The key EQ & Social EQ models are explained below.
Q: Can I really build my emotional intelligence?
A: Yes. Unlike IQ or personality traits, greater emotional awareness and management are possible through learning and practice. You’ll also understand your strengths, vulnerabilities and how to best develop or work with emotions.
Q: Are some people more naturally in touch with and adept at using emotions?
A; Yes, we believe so. Some people seem to be naturally more empathic for instance, whilst others find it difficult or impossible to feel much for anyone or anything. Imagine we’re all on a continuum (a normal distribution curve) with typical spread of high or low EQ skills becoming less prevalent at either ends of the scale. Most people have the ability to build their emotional intelligence, though some people however may find it harder to build certain components.
Q: What is EQ and how is it measured?
A: Great question. EI stands for Emotional Intelligence. Strictly speaking EQ stands for Emotional Quotient. EQ is a statistically created number that helps describe a person or group’s emotional intelligence. It’s based on lots of sample data which creates waht’s called a normed population similar to how IQ scores are measured. Using what’s termed normally distirbuted populations (displayed graphically as a bell curve), we dramatically increase our knowledge and practical applications for these populations and scoring. For the EQ-i 2.0, 100 is the average score for all EQ atributes with a standard deviation of 15. This describes the spread of scores within a population. This norming enables us to reveal lots of useful things about the population, probabilties of having various EQ scores and enables us to statistically compare, analyse or make predictive statements regarding people’s EQ attributes and their scores. This gives us powerful, reliable and mathematically provable information and results.
For instance, around 67% of people will score between 85 and 115 for an EQ attribute. This is a spread of 1 standard deviation either side of the mean. And having an EQ (or IQ) score of over 130 ( 2 standard deviations from the norm) is found in just 2.2% of the population. Statistics is powerful at helping us understand, measure, compare, develop, recruit for and tailor programmes for our clients. In a nutshell, it helps us to help you, more. You can read a sample EQ profile here.
The terms EI and EQ are now used interchangeably although strictly speaking the former refers to the meaning, the latter its measure.
Q: I notice there are different EQ models and tests. How do I know which ones are right for me?
A: Great question. Fundamentally EQ assessments look at very similar things. We use two of the best and most comprehensive. If you work with a highly experiened EQ specialist this will be more important to you than what assessment you use. Speak to them and perhaps ask for references to understand how others have been helped.
Q: What are the models of EQ.
A: Broadly there are 3 models of EQ (summarised below). These EQ models view emotional intelligence from slightly different perspectives though have strong similarities.
The EQ Ability Model
The Mayer-Salovey model is described as the ability to perceive, understand, manage and use emotions to facilitate thinking. This is the foundation of the Ability based model. Mayer-Salovey published their seminal work on emotional intelligence in 1995 and are rightly seen as founding fathers to emotional intelligence work. Their model has four key areas;
- Perceive Emotions
- Use Emotions
- Understand Emotions
- Manage Emotions
The EQ Mixed Model
The Daniel Goleman model sees EQ as an assortment of emotional and social competencies that contribute to managerial performance and leadership. Daniel Goleman is very much responsible for bringing EQ into the modern vernacular in his best-selling 1996 book: “Emotional Intelligence: Why it can matter more than IQ.”
His 5 components of the EQ model are stated as;
- Empathy &
- Social skills
EQ Trait Model
This model was developed by Konstantinos V. Petrides. The most widely taken trait EQ assessment is the EQ-i 2.0 (originally created by Reuven BarOn as the EQ-i in 1995). BarOn describes Emotional Intelligence as;
“an array of interrelated emotional and social competencies, skills and behaviours that impact intelligent behaviour.”
The 5 key domains of the EQ-i 2.0 model are;
- Inter-Personal Relationships
- Decision-Making and
The EQ-i 2.0’s 5 categories (composites) each have 3 further detailed sub-composite areas. This is the EQ assessment that EQworks uses to uncover overall EQ abilities. For clarity, throughout this website where we state an EQ test, we usually refer to either the EQ-i 2.0 or the Social EQ assessment, The A.R.T.
What is Social EQ?
Social-Emotional Intelligence is the part of overall emotional intelligence that relates purely to how we relate to others and communicate. And the reason we, at EQworks, separate it out is that it’s so important and a key area of interest & development to most of our clients. Most EQ tests simply don’t have sufficient detail to measure or develop key aspects of social skills so the Advanced Relationship skills Testis not only unique, but works beautifully in tandem with overall EQ assessments to reveal an unparalleled view of someone’s or a team’s EQ.
Why don’t most EQ consultancies or emotional intelligence practitioners use social EQ tests?
Most EQ trainers are not Emotional intelligence specialists, focussing exclusively on, and facilitating, EQ skills day in and day out. We are. Having this depth of expertise and using both EQ and social EQ assessments makes a big difference.
What’s a brief history of emotional intelligence?
Charles Darwin first identified the importance of emotional expression for survival. In 1940, the leading American psychologist David Wechsler described the influence of non-intellective factors on intelligent behaviour, arguing that we need to take these into account when talking of intelligence. Howard Gardner introduced the concept of Multiple Intelligences in 1983.
Dr Reuven Baron, the creator of the EQ-i ® EQ measuring tool, coined the acronym EQ (emotional quotient) around 30 years ago. At this time, several leading emotional intelligence specialists, particularly Professors John Mayer and Peter Salovey, were key to developing our current understanding of emotional intelligence. In 1995, Daniel Goleman published his comprehensive work ‘Emotional Intelligence – Why it can matter more than IQ’ which led to greater recognition of EQ and its potential for performance development.
What’s the future of Emotional Intelligence?
That depends very much on people, like you. If we all took a little time to become more emotionally aware & build emotional intelligence skills many things will change, for the better. The quality of leadership increases will improve. As EQ increases we demand more of ourselves, our organisations and of our leaders in ways that serve us all. We see ourselves more as leaders, individually taking responsibility more and being more agile at making things happen.
Our world will become more efficient, healthier, more well-adjusted, with fewer conflicts, greater synergies and collaborations. Organisations then become more strategically clear and well run. They find the right people for their more clearly defined roles. People will be encouraged to do what they love & ultimately love what they do.
How do I know this? Because this is what our clients already experience and know.