Emotional Information Age
The information age has been here for quite some time. All of us are dependent on getting information, interpreting it and using it wisely. But there is also another type of information age going on that does not involve technology, it centers on the energy of emotions.
The field of Emotional Intelligence has grown both in sophistication and importance. There has been a dramatic increase in researchers that have entered the field and studies that are being conducted. This concept has taken hold worldwide.
Emotional Intelligence came into existence as psychologists and social scientists realized that the IQ (the conventional measurement for intelligence) was too narrow in scope to fully explain individuals. EQ (Emotional Quotient) has the essential premise that to be successful one must have effective awareness, management of one’s own emotions and an understanding of other people.
EQ contains five domains:
- Knowing your emotions
- Managing your own emotions
- Motivating yourself
- Recognizing and understanding other people’s emotions
- Managing relationships
The unique contribution of EQ is to see thought and emotion as adaptive and intelligently intertwined. In fact, many researchers see EQ as the latest development in understanding the relationship between reason and emotion.
EQ principles provide a way to understand and assess our own and other’s behavior. It has a clear link to management and leadership styles, attitudes and interpersonal potential. The instrument is being used for human resource planning, recruitment, interviewing and selection, management development, customer relations and much more.
Increasingly, many organizations from small companies to universities to Fortune 500 companies to government have found the EQ measurement to be important in improving their bottom line results. It has also been used to help organizations change the way their leaders think and function.
Jack Welch, former CEO and Chairman of GE, described it this way:
“A leader’s intelligence has to have a strong emotional component. He has to have high levels of self-awareness, maturity and self-control. S/he must be able to withstand the heat, handle setbacks and when those lucky moments arise, enjoy success with equal parts of joy and humility. No doubt emotional intelligence is more rare than book smarts, by my experience says it is actually more important in the making of a leader. You just can’t ignore it.”
The door to EQ opens with self-awareness and understanding. It involves digging deeper into what makes us act as we do. EQ has made a significant difference in thousands of people’s lives. It is a starting point for entering the information age about ourselves.