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EQ and IQ: What You Need to Know

You're probably familiar with the concepts of IQ and EQ, but you might not know the differences between the two. What are they? Why do they matter in the workplace?


intellectual conversation

What is IQ?


“IQ stands for intelligence quotient and, in short, it is a measure of a person's reasoning ability. In other words, an IQ test is supposed to gauge how well someone can use information and logic to answer questions or make predictions.”

IQ as a concept has been around since the 1900s, but many people question its usefulness and accuracy in the modern day. Jack A. Naglieri of the American Psychological Association argues that “the use of verbal and quantitative tests as measures of ability is hard to justify given that these test items are virtually indistinguishable from questions on tests of achievement.”

He, and many others, also argue that IQ tests “amplify race and ethnic differences” and increase biases.


How is IQ Measured?

IQ is measured through a test that evaluates reasoning and problem-solving skills through math, language, memory, and information-process speed. Scores are also adjusted for age.

There is no one standard, official IQ test; Healthline reports that the most widely used IQ tests are:

  • Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC-V)/li>

  • Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Adults (WAIS)

  • Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale

  • Differential Ability Scales (DAS)

  • Peabody Individual Achievement Test


What is EQ?


“Emotional intelligence is the ability to sense, understand and effectively apply the power of acumen of emotions to facilitate higher levels of collaboration and productivity.”

While the concept of EQ (emotional quotient) has been a key component of human behavior for all time, the phrase “emotional intelligence” was popularized by Daniel Goleman in the mid-90s based on the theoretical foundation laid by Peter Salovey and John D. Mayer.


EQ is a measure of our emotional intelligence that indicates how well we can manage our emotions and impact our relationships with others. If you want to dig into the history of EQ, check out TTI SI’s Emotional Quotient™ Technical Manual v.1.2.


How is EQ Measured?

Emotional intelligence is measured through assessments. It’s important to remember that some assessments are more reliable than others; look for science-backed, research-based assessments like the EQ assessment at TTI SI.


This assessment measures the five dimensions of emotional intelligence: self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, social awareness and social regulation.


Self-Awareness is the ability to recognize and understand your moods, emotions and drives, as well as their effect on others.


Self-Regulation is the ability to control or redirect disruptive impulses and moods and the propensity to suspend judgment and think before acting.


Social Awareness is the ability to understand the emotional makeup of other people and how your words and actions affect others.


Social Regulation is the ability to influence the emotional clarity of others through proficiency in managing relationships and building networks.


Motivation is a passion for working for reasons beyond the external drive for knowledge, utility, surroundings, others, power, or methodology and is based on an internal drive or propensity to pursue goals with energy and persistence.


Are IQ And EQ Linked?

This depends on who you ask! Some research indicates that people with higher IQ scores (referred to in this study as “gifted) are, on average, also more emotionally intelligent than their “non-gifted” counterparts. This might have something to do with pattern recognition; it’s one of the commonly measured aspects of IQ and the skills used for it can also help with EQ. Strong pattern recognition can help increase self-awareness and social awareness since being able to spot patterns of behavior and the preferences of yourself and others bolster emotional intelligence.


Which Is More Important: IQ Or EQ?

There’s no set answer to this; it comes down to what you value!


If one of your top drivers is Intellectual, you might place more of an emphasis on IQ, bookmarks, and academic skills. That’s because that is how you are fulfilled and where you find your motivation, but that’s not the case for everyone.


In the workplace, we can narrow down the question a little more; not all jobs are aided or benefited from book smarts and technical prowess. All jobs, however, benefit from strong communication, conflict management, and respect for others, which are all associated with a higher EQ.


In general, high scores in both categories can indicate success in the workplace and in job roles, but emotional intelligence has lasting power; “Emotional intelligence is among the 10 most in-demand skills and will be through at least 2025,” according to the World Economic Forum.

About the Author

Jaime Faulkner believes authenticity and storytelling are the keys to successful marketing. As a graduate from the Hugh Downs School of Human Communication, she loves finding and connecting narratives. When she's not at work, she's psychoanalyzing contestants on The Bachelor, painting, listening to podcasts, or playing tabletop RPGs.

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