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The Value of Screening for Emotional Intelligence

By Buck Love, Business Retention & Growth

This talent acquisition tip is too important to overlook, and is proven to be a better predictor of a candidate’s workplace success than those who score higher on IQ or have more relevant, previous work experience.

Emotional intelligence is a term coined by Daniel Goleman, that involves self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skill.  In addition to being a better predictor for workplace success for those scoring higher, it also has been linked to increased job retention. For an in-depth analysis, you can read his book, Emotional Intelligence: Why it Can Matter More Than IQ.

In a recent article, June 27, 2018, Kellie Brown offers “3 Questions to Evaluate a Candidate’s Emotional Intelligence” and what to look for in a candidate’s response.

These are 3 questions Brown suggests you add to your screening process and what to look for in the responses.

  • Can you explain to me a conflict you had at work that left you feeling aggravated?

When asking this question, you want to be listening for how a candidate handled their emotions during this trying situation and how they were able to empathize with those they were conflicting with.

  • Tell me about a time your boss or colleague criticized your work. How did it make you feel and how did you handle it?

 You should listen for a candidate who sounds defensive or offended when speaking about the feedback or tries to assign blame, as all of these are indicators of lower emotional intelligence. Can they articulate how they were able to incorporate the feedback to improve upon themselves?

  • What job skill do you feel you could use improvement on?

Individuals who have low emotional intelligence have a hard time discussing their faults, so you want to take note of someone who has difficulty answering this question or someone who has a boilerplate answer. You want to listen for someone who takes the time and effort to be thoughtful and articulate in their answer.

With talent acquisition challenges at all levels becoming the norm, these simple screening questions may prove to be hidden gems to help you identify those who can achieve success and grow within your company.

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