How to Implement an Emotional Intelligence Test
All About Emotional Intelligence Tests
For decades, emotional intelligence and other soft skills have been overlooked. Instead, hard skills have been in favor in the workplace. It is time that we looked further into this to find out why this is the case.
While IQ and hard skills are important, they are not the only predictor of job performance. Emotional intelligence is set to become one of the top 10 skills for employees. Keep reading to find out more about emotional intelligence and why it is such a valuable skill.
What is Emotional Intelligence?
Emotional intelligence (EI) is a concept popularized by Daniel Goleman. In 1995, he published the book “Emotional Intelligence”. This book radically changed the way people viewed intellect. No longer is it all about test scores and knowledge. Instead, it is important to understand and respond to the feelings of others. Its effects are still felt today in a wide range of ways.
Goleman outlined 5 components of emotional intelligence:
- Social skill
Coming out of the work of Mayer, Caruso, Salovey & Sitarenios in 2013 is the Emotional Intelligence 2.0 Test. They took Goleman’s notion of EI and further researched it to develop this test. The test is based around 4 specific skills that denote EI, according to Mayer et al.
- Perceiving emotions
- Using emotions to facilitate thought
- Understanding emotions
- Managing emotions
Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace
No longer do we adhere to the traditional view of intellect being ‘book smarts’. The notion of emotional intelligence opens up countless new possibilities.
Those who possess high emotional intelligence make better leaders. They are more able to read the moods of others, manage stress and inspire others. It is critical that leaders can manage their emotions, as their mood affects the mood of others. All of this means that they can lead a higher-performing team.
It’s not only leaders with high EI who perform better. Any employee with good EI is likely to be more productive, compassionate and agile. They are also likely to be in better health due to lower stress levels and have a good work ethic.
Unfortunately, most job interviewers are still looking for traditional IQ factors. These include test scores, qualifications and years of experience. If hiring managers should consider interviewing for emotional intelligence. By doing this, they can develop a much more effective workforce.
There are a wide range of benefits business owners and leaders will notice if their staff have great EI. These could include increased staff motivation, better leadership, and more collaboration. These can result in both happier staff and higher profits for your organization.
What are Emotional Intelligence Tests?
While IQ tests measure cognitive capabilities, emotional intelligence tests measure your EQ. The idea is that EI is needed to solve certain types of problems, and that is what these EQ quizzes measure. This is a test that you do yourself, based on your own abilities.
Another way of looking at your EI is through the lens of others with a 360 ° review. A 360 is where you ask multiple colleagues, contacts, and stakeholders to answer a series of questions about the person the review is for.
The self-report and the 360 are very different kinds of tests. A 360 EI tool is great for increasing the self-awareness of the employee. It will usually include feedback from their manager, colleague, and direct reports. This information can be useful to find out how their EI is perceived in the workplace.
The idea of these tests is no matter which type you choose; the result will show you which areas you are doing well in and which can be improved upon. Then you can decide what area you want to focus on for your development.
By improving in one area, you usually end up improving in many others too. That’s because emotional intelligence skills are not separate from one another but interlinked.
Implementing Emotional Intelligence Tests
Emotional intelligence testing should be done as part of staff development. They should not be part of evaluation or performance management. This is critical if it is to be successful.
Try suggesting an EI test as an opportunity for development. This will cause employee to be more likely to engage with the results. Some people try to use it as a tool for discipline or improvement. However, this can cause the employee to become disengaged. It would therefore be less likely that they will get any benefit from doing the test.
You can choose to have all your staff undertake EI tests during staff development rounds. Or simply suggest it with an opt-in approach. This encourages buy-in from staff.
Many companies are now getting all their staff to take these tests. The purpose of this is so that departments can work together to work more cohesively.
Emotional intelligence is undoubtedly a valuable skill in the workplace. But, is it valued by managers and HR? Not always, unfortunately. Hopefully, as more people learn about the benefits of EI, it will be more widely recognized as the asset that it is.
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