What is Emotional Intelligence and Why does it Matter?

March 22, 2016

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Why is it that 70% of the time people with an average IQ outperform those with high IQs? The answer lies in Emotional Intelligence (EQ). So what is EQ?

Daniel Goleman, a New York Times science writer and Harvard trained psychologist, published a book in the 1990’s highlighting the work of Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer. Salovey and Mayer created a research program to develop valid measurements of a person’s ability to monitor and distinguish emotions and use the information to guide thinking and action. Goleman took their findings and broke EQ into five categories:

  • Self Awareness: Awareness of your emotions and how your actions affect others
  • Self Regulation: The ability to reveal your emotions with restraint and control
  • Motivation: An individual’s drive drawn from internal ambition versus external forces
  • Empathy: Awareness and understanding of other people’s moods, behaviors, and motivations
  • People Skills: The ability to effectively navigate others’ emotions to build rapport and trust

In short, it is the capacity to regulate your own emotions as well as understand and influence those around you. As the top executive search company in the MidWest, The Overture Group approaches each search to select candidates with high EQ. It is imperative in any search to have clear and defined SMARTe* objectives in selecting these candidates.

  • Specific: Clearly define details and the objectives so that candidates understand it.
  • Measurable: Approach the selection with manageable objectives
  • Action-oriented: Use Action verbs to build, improve, change, and help in the understanding of the objectives
  • Results: Clearly indicate what is expected
  • Time-bound: Include dates or length of time for the anticipated objective completion. It could be three, six, nine months or one year.
  • Environment: Describe the company mission, pace, pressure, available resources, and politics.

Carefully selected candidates with a high EQ can have numerous positive effects. They can manage stress and build workplace relationships needed to cultivate a positive company culture. They can quickly establish trust needed to lead. In fact,

EQ traits are highlighted in superior performers 44% of the time and cognitively intelligent traits are only highlighted 19% of the time.

Each new candidate adds value and develops an emotionally intelligent workforce with SMARTe objectives.  Contact The Overture Group today to find your next high EQ employee!

*Adler, Lou. Hire With Your Head, 3rd Edition. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons. 2007.


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