Emotional Quotient: The Key Ingredient in Recruitment 


"If you can hire people whose passion intersects with their job, they won't require any supervision at all. They will manage themselves better than anyone could ever manage them. Their fire comes from within, not from without. Their motivation is internal, not external."- Steven Covey

How often have you come across someone who performs phenomenally well at the professional front irrespective of their above-average IQ? Conversely, how often have you come across people who despite having excellent educational qualifications have fallen short of being successful leaders? Burning out due to excessive stress, low productivity and moodiness are in fact, visible characteristics when it comes to these individuals. Clearly then, not only does EQ play an essential role in defining success, it's a but a balance of IQ and Emotional Quotient which is what professionals need.  People with a high EQ are known to be better at working with teams, adapt better to changes and can work well under pressure. As modern workplaces continue to evolve, with new technologies and changing culture, having a team which balances IQ and EQ well is imperative.

Impact of EQ at Workplace

Emotional Quotient is the ability to perceive, control and evaluate emotions. There are certain traits of EQ which not only enhance work productivity but also makes the environment a happier place to work in. Starting with self-awareness, if a person is aware of their strengths and weakness and how their actions can affect others, they are better adapted to constructive criticism and can reinforce the same for improved work productivity.
 A person with higher EQ is self-regulated. Which means she/he has better control over her emotions and knows when to and when not to reveal them. Along with this, being empathetic and compassionate can help an individual connect with her peers on an emotional level. This helps in building rapport and trust with your colleagues. Inculcating these traits not only works in favor of the team but helps you as an individual to stay motivated at work. It also reduces the chances of misunderstandings and conflicts with colleagues.  

Boosting Your EQ

There are several ways you can consciously improve your EQ. It starts with learning how to listen to yourself. Though you might find it difficult initially but develop the ability to understand your emotions is the first and perhaps the most important step. That said, as individuals, sometimes you may find a certain feeling uncomfortable. Is your first instinct to avoid them? Instead, take a moment and ask yourself "How am I feeling?" Take this space for yourself at least twice a day for a couple of minutes and get in touch with your emotions. These emotions often rise, reach a peak and fade naturally. To enhance your EQ, try not to dismiss your feelings before you have a chance to think them thoroughly. Furthermore, your body plays a crucial role in understanding your feelings. For example, feeling heavy-hearted while driving to your workplace indicates that your work is a source of stress for you. However, following these signals and the feelings associated with it helps you reason with your behavior and exercise your emotions consciously. Yet, there comes a time where you need to stop looking inwards and shift focus on what's happening outside. Studies have shown that people who dwell on their negative feelings for too long tend to amplify it further. EQ involves not only the ability to look within but being receptive to the environment around you. 

Emotional quotient is about self-awareness, social awareness, self-management and relationship management. So, what role does it play in recruiting a candidate?

Emotional Quotient and Recruitment

To enhance the productivity of your workforce, Emotional Quotient and recruitment needs to go hand in hand. Often while hiring candidates, Hiring Managers to experience an internal battle of whether Intelligence Quotient should be placed above Emotional Quotient or vice versa. To achieve the best for your organization, it is necessary to marry both.
 While recruiting a candidate, EQ helps identify individuals who possess the ability to understand, empathize and blend with the people around. But how do you determine the EQ capacity of a candidate during an interview? Emotionally quotient people are intelligent, self-aware, self-confident and are thick-skinned that allows them to utilize critical feedback positively. They take onus for their mistakes and can effortlessly align their thoughts. You can use questions like these in your interview-

"Who inspires you and why?" 
"Did you build lasting friendships at your previous job?" 
"What skills do you feel like you're still missing?"
 "Could you tell me about a time you made a mistake at work/ received tough feedback from your boss?"

Listen to what your candidates have to say. Do they rush into answering or take time to accumulate their thoughts and how comfortable are they in that silence? Everyone experiences emotions. But not everyone can articulate them when they occur. Also, people with high EQ possess a well-developed emotional vocabulary. Take insight on whether your candidates say they felt "bad" or "good" or if they use more explicit words like "anxious" "frustrated" or "excited" to express their feelings. A candidate's EQ is defined by their choice of words to describe their feelings, understanding of how others felt, what caused a situation and what actions they took based on their knowledge.

EQ is like the icing on the cake; it sets a great player apart from the average ones. IQ, on the other hand, takes care of the basics and shows the level of competence one might have. 
Organizations need to make empathy and expressive behavior a part of their culture. Today's young generation doesn't necessarily comply with the traditional office norms. Studies show that most millennials don't see work as 'just a job. It Is more than a paycheque. The workforce today requires emotional needs as a part of their culture. Paying attention to these needs means a happier workforce with enhanced productivity, ultimately enhancing company bottom-line.  A wise move is to invest in metrics that measure the EQ of a candidate so that you produce better outcomes, for the business and the people running it.