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    Volume 10    Issue 3    Summer 2003
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THE BUSINESS CASE FOR EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
by Marcia Hughes

"Yes! Emotional Intelligence can increase organization productivity by increasing leadership performance."
      - Reuven BarOn, Ph.D.

Renowned experts in Emotional Intelligence converged in Halifax, Nova Scotia in May to explore and celebrate the building success in bringing awareness of the importance of emotional intelligence to the workplace. I attended, eager to soak up all the learning I could to share with our readers and clients.

The highlight was Dr. Reuven BarOn's presentation demonstrating the business case for using emotional intelligence in the workplace. Dr. BarOn is the creator of the EQi® a scientifically valid and reliable instrument which has now sold for over 1 million applications.

Emotional Intelligence (Emotional Intelligence) is defined by Dr. BarOn as "a cross-section of emotional and social competencies that determine how well we understand and express ourselves, relate with others and cope with daily demands and pressures." Emotional Intelligence is rooted in common sense and fortunately grows as we get older! The EQiâ measures 15 different factors, any of which can be grown if an individual commits to expanding his or her capabilities. This is significantly different from IQ or personality traits, which are considered to be fixed for life.

To establish that Emotional Intelligence enhances productivity, Dr. BarOn presented research to show that Emotional Intelligence impacts leadership, that we can hire emotionally intelligent leaders and that we can train leaders to be more emotionally intelligent. He also presented research demonstrating the direct connection between productivity and Emotional Intelligence. Let's review this compelling case:

  1. The well-known Center for Creative Leadership performed a study comparing their assessment tools with the EQi® and found that it does predict successful leadership. Furthermore, they also found significant correlation between lack of EI and career derailment.

  2. The US Air Force used the EQi® to "stop the bleeding" of costs due to their high turn over with recruiters. They were able to determine the characteristics of successful recruiters and then test to be certain new hires had those characteristics. The result - a savings of over $2.7 million dollars!

  3. To demonstrate the leaders can be trained to increase their Emotional Intelligence, Dr. BarOn cited two studies - one from Sweden, which demonstrated significant improvement in total EQ and several factors from training, and one from American Express where those trained for 12 hours translated to a 2% sales increase.

  4. Finally, Geetu Orme and Dr. BarOn cite research with Beefeater's in England, which demonstrates that improving the Emotional Intelligence of managers does increase organizational productivity. Beefeater restaurants experienced annual profit increases when they increased the manager's Emotional Intelligence in 4 areas: social responsibility, emotional self-awareness, reality testing and happiness. Additionally, they found significant correlations between the managers' Emotional Intelligence and managerial performance, team satisfaction and customer satisfaction.

Proof is developing as demonstrated by the studies I've just cited. Enhancing Emotional Intelligence is fundamental to all aspects of workplace success. At Collaborative Growth we use the BarOn EQi® in our work with clients and we teach certification training to those interested in being able to use the instrument directly in their work. We're excited about the unfolding benefits and would love to hear your stories of success. Please keep sharing them with us. And let us know if you'd like our fact sheet on "The Business Case for Emotional Intelligence." We'll be glad to email it to you.

 

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