23 May 2018

Recruit, train and develop with socio-emotional skills in mind

*This Alievo article was originally published in the ICF’s Coach Québec  of September 2017. We are proud to share it with you again via our website.

The World Economic Forum speaks of a 4th industrial revolution and predicts in its Future of Jobs Report 2016 that emotional intelligence will be one of the key competencies for tomorrow’s leaders and employees

Why is it so important you’ll say? Because a person with a developed emotional quotient (EQ) can, among other things:

  •        better manage pressure
  •        make better decisions
  •        work in collaboration with others
  •        show empathy and flexibility in the exchange of new ideas, and
  •        accept feedback with openness and optimism

These are key skills in a changing world. The technological revolution is changing the way we live, work and interact.

Recruit, train and develop according to socio-emotional skills

It is normal to see organizations looking for candidates with the best technical skills, to want to get their hands-on experts in new technologies and to develop knowledge to advance in a highly competitive environment. Who doesn’t want to surround themselves with the best?

It therefore becomes even more important to include in this search for talent an emotional and social component, to value not only the intellectual quotient (IQ) but also the emotional quotient (EQ). We want to recruit and retain these talents. We want them to be part of the team and see them collaborate, create and innovate.

Emotional Quotient, Emotional Intelligence and Emotional Competencies

Let’s go back in time. The concept of emotional intelligence (EI) is not new, far from it. We must go back almost 100 years to find the beginnings of this exploration which will complete the notion of human intelligence associated with the intellectual quotient (IQ). Here is a brief history:

  •        Already in 1920, Edward Thorndike, a professor of educational psychology at Columbia University Teachers College, identified an aspect of emotional intelligence that he called social intelligence. Later, in 1937, he and Saul Stern made a first attempt at measuring this social intelligence but concluded that their attempts were not successful.
  •        In 1983, psychologist Dr. Reuven Bar-On was the first to use the term EQ or emotional quotient in his doctoral dissertation to describe social and emotional functioning. Bar-On’s EI concept describes emotional and social intelligence as a range of interrelated emotional and social skills, competencies and behaviours that influence intelligent behaviour. The Bar-On Model of Emotional Intelligence is described in the Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology as one of three predominant models in the field of EI and proposes 5 major components and 15 sub-components. It is also recognized as the first reliable measure of EI.
  •        A little later, in 1990, John Mayer and Peter Salovey, both psychologists, proposed the term Emotional Intelligence. Their definition is formulated as follows: EI is the ability to perceive, understand, manage and use emotions to facilitate reflection. Their model, one of three pillars with the Bar-On model and the Goleman model, includes 4 sections explaining how the brain handles emotions and emotional information (perceive, use, understand and manage).
  •        And finally, in 1995, Daniel Goleman, psychologist and science journalist for the New York Times, wrote a book and popularized the term emotional intelligence. It proposes the emotional competence model comprising 4 quadrants (self awareness, social awareness, self management, relationship management).

Interest in EI is not a current trend. It was even Charles Darwin who published the first work known in the wider field of emotional and social intelligence as early as 1872 (on the importance of emotional expression for survival and adaptation).

Companies and organizations are increasingly interested in developing the emotional and social skills of their employees and leaders. And for good reason, a person with a high EQ and well-developed emotional skills increases his chances of success, his own well-being, his performance and that of his team.

Where to start?

  1. We start by conceptualizing, by putting words on what for many is not yet concrete. You will want to be well equipped and able to communicate the importance of EI to the managers and leaders we support.

Then we’ll talk about:

Emotional Quotient (EQ): Emotional quotient (EQ) measures emotional intelligence (EI).

Emotional Intelligence (EI): Emotional intelligence is a set of emotional and social skills that, together, establish the way we:

  •        Perceive and express ourselves;
  •        Develop and maintain social relationships;
  •        Let us face the difficulties;
  •        Use emotional information effectively and meaningfully.

Emotional (and social) skills: A set of abilities to deal with emotions and/or emotional information in general.

  1. Then we will want to measure the EQ to better assess the gaps and develop the skills of individuals and teams.

The means will be provided to measure and evaluate these competencies. Psychometric tools, including the EQi-2.0 inventory, exist to perform this measurement and provide an excellent basis for individual and team development.

  1. And finally, we will want to apply these skills and coach, individually and collectively, to generate sustainable changes in the workplace.
  •        To achieve this, we must adapt to this new reality and think about:
  •        Recruit based on both technical skills and emotional and social skills;
  •        Invest in the training and development of the social-emotional skills of existing employees;
  •        Prioritize a leadership style that is guided, influenced and inspired;
  •        Focus more on creating generative collaborations where the individual strengths of team members are not just added up but multiplied.

In conclusion

Developing emotional intelligence means focusing on what makes human beings human. To learn more about development opportunities in IE, contact us.

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Articles found in: Blog, Collective leadership, Emotional Intelligence, Individual leadership, Interpersonal, Performance, Recruitment, Team synergy