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Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence means to recognise, discern between, manage & express emotions appropriately (termed EI or EQ).

Why is Emotional Intelligence 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.

Learn the 15 attributes of emotional intelligence  (in 60 seconds)

Emotional Intelligence in 60 seconds

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 Copyright in website images - Internet Newsletter for ... helps explain how we use emotions;

5 Purposes of Emotion



Emotions help us calibrate experiences to move towards needs & away from threats

Decision Making


Emotions working with cognition, provide the meaning & reasoning behind decision-making

Motivation & appreciation

Motivation & appreciation

Emotions drive us to connect to our values & what’s most important to us
Communication & connection

Communication & connection

Emotions enable us to value & understand others to build effective relationships

Learning & beliefs

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
The Good
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.

Testing EQ

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.

The Bad

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.

The Ugly
Don’t shoot the messenger

It’s true, emotions can get us into trouble, but this is when we don’t acknowledge, understand, express or manage them well. Often children are encouraged to ignore, devalue or suppress emotions or are not supported in working through uncomfortable or complex feelings. We 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 said 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 model used, EQ components vary slightly from model to model. 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. But you’ll also understand your strengths, vulnerabilities and how to best develop or work with them.

Q: Are some people more naturally in touch with and adept at using emotions?

A; Yes, we believe so. Some people seem to more naturally be empathic for instance, whilst others find it very difficult or impossible to feel much for anyone. Imagine we’re all on a continuum, a normal distribution for instance, of either high or low EQ skills. Most people have the ability to build their emotional intelligence. Some people however may find it harder to build certain components.

Q: What’s the difference between EI and EQ?

A: Great question. EI stands for Emotional Intelligence. Strictly speaking, EQ stands for Emotional Quotient. This is a statistically backed number that helps describe a person or group’s emotional intelligence. It’s based around norming a large population similar to how IQ is measured.  By that I mean we can standardise a population which means we dramatically increase our knowledge and practical applications for this population and its scoring.  A score of 100 is the norm,  the average, score with the population of potential scores within a normal distribution (also called bell curve). For the EQ-i 2.0 test described below, a standard deviation of 15 is used. This describes the spread of scores within a population with a set percentage of people scoring at different levels.

For instance, 68% of people will score between 85 and 115.  This is a spread of 1 standard deviation around the norm. Statistics is powerful at helping us understand, measure, compare, develop, recruit for and tailor things including EQ skills.  In a nutshell, it helps us to help you, more. You can read a sample EQ profile here.

As scoring EQ skills in this way is so helpful, the term EQ is now used interchangeably with EI.

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 similar things. We use two of the best assessments and the most comprehensive.  A thorough understanding of your EQ and a great practitioner will ensure you’ll gain the most from EQ tests. Ask for references if you’re unsure, to see how it worked for others.

Q: What are the models of EQ.

A: Broadly there are 3 models of EQ as summarised below.  These EQ models see 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;

  • Self-awareness
  • Self-regulation
  • Motivation
  • 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;

  • Self-Perception
  • Self-Expression
  • Inter-Personal Relationships
  • Decision-Making and
  • Stress-Management

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 or the Social EQ assessment, The A.R.T.

Emotional Intelligence is seen quite similar in terms of what it means & what it measures.
It’s far more important to understand and use its core principles than to be too fixed on any one model.

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. Also, no commonly used EQ tests go into sufficient detail to measure or develop it so we developed the Advanced Relationship skills Test to do just this.

Why don’t most EQ consultancies or emotional intelligence practitioners use social EQ tests?

Most practitioners are not Emotional intelligence specialists, working with EQ day in and day out. We are. To use and understand how an overall EQ and social EQ assessment both create phenomenal insights takes time and highly experienced practitioners to understand. We take EQ understanding a level deeper than many.

What’s the 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.



 EQ services we offer

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