Emotional Intelligence Skills Important for Career Success

Interpersonal skills & decision making skills ranked the highest

The Graduate Management Admission Council surveyed alumni in April 2009 and found that interpersonal skills were the most valued quality in job performance for entry level and mid-level positions, and that interpersonal skills ranked second in importance for senior level positions, falling behind decision making skills.

Emotional Intelligence Increases Your Effectiveness

Interpersonal or soft skills fall under the concept of emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence or EQ, for short, is a group of personal and social competencies. They are not related to IQ, personality, aptitude or achievement. They can be remembered as four large skill areas, all beginning with the letter S: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and social skills. These skills develop throughout life and naturally grow with age. However, these skills can be improved and developed at any point in one’s life to increase effectiveness in achieving personal and professional goals.

The Strongest Predictor of Career Success

In 1995, Daniel Goleman wrote the book, Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ, which popularized this concept and shared research showing that it was emotional intelligence and not IQ that is the strongest predictor of career success. He shared how emotional intelligence skills are of critical importance in good leadership and often the differentiator between high and low performers across job classifications.

The first reliable and valid emotional intelligence assessment was developed and released in the 1990s by Dr. Reuven Bar-On, called the EQ – i. This assessment measures one’s EQ or emotional quotient on 15 scales. Since its release, emotional intelligence has been measured extensively and research continues to document its importance in leadership and in star performers.

With this research, employers are now looking for EQ in their potential employees and leaders. Recruiters utilize assessments and perform directed interviews where they tap into a potential hire’s EQ skills.

Improve Your EQ Skills

College career centers and business schools know the importance of developing these skills in their students to improve their student success and to increase student quality, thus attracting recruiters. Emotional intelligence skill building is being increasingly added and integrated into current curriculum and programs. As an adjunct professor in the University of Cincinnati Lindner College of Business, students who used their EQ skills seemed to be more effective in the job search process and had more opportunities for internships.

These EQ skills are important for success in all job seekers especially today in this competitive job market. In order to stand out and be the lucky one to get the offer, you need to make that personal connection with the interviewer or recruiter, by effectively using your personal and social skills. You need to display your EQ in your answers and actions. As a career coach, those professionals and executives that I worked with that leveraged their EQ skills landed in timely manner and in jobs that fit their interests and values.

Contact us today about assessing your emotional intelligence skills and/or coaching to improve your skills for a more successful job search or to enhance your career performance and/or leadership.