IQ,EQ and SQ
Outstanding performers with high levels of Intelligence Quotient
(IQ), Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EQ) and Spiritual Quotient (SQ) can rarely
be found in traditional organisations, says Geeta A Sundrani
long, the world gave much importance to Intelligence Quotient (IQ). This attitude
is a legacy of the early 20th century when psychologists devised tests to measure
intelligence. These tests primarily measured intellectual or rational intelligence
(used to solve logical problems). The higher the figure, the belief went, the
greater the intelligence.
IQ is associated with serial processing activity of brain
(rational thought). It is associated with our neural tracts. Neural tracts learn
(are wired) according to a fixed program, the rules of which are laid down in
formal logic. The learning involved is step by step and rule bound. When we
teach children their times table by rote, we are encouraging them to wire their
brains for serial processing. It produces the kind of thinking that is useful
for solving rational problems or achieving definite tasks.
Intelligence quotient measuring has existed for much longer than EQ measuring.
Alfred Binet developed the first modern IQ test in the early 20th century. Since
then, many modifications on intelligence quotient testing have been made. Currently
an IQ test involves a set of standardised questions for which one receives a
While the IQ can measure concepts like logical reasoning, word knowledge and
math skills, many feel it is not adequate in measuring creative abilities or
emotional abilities. In fact, some with high IQs do not seem to be particularly
adept at maintaining relationships or seem socially awkward at best.
For example IQ measurements on most children with autism are typically very
high, yet it is well known that these children are burdened by their inability
to communicate in other forums. Thus other tests may be administered to evaluate
such a childs ability according to other standardised testing methods.
Intelligence quotient testing is now not administered very frequently, since
some feel it merely measures how well people do on IQ tests. Emotional quotient
testing is becoming more popular in the workplace since some employers feel
it will help predict how well potential employees might do in stressful circumstances.
Emotional intelligence quotient
Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EQ) is increasingly relevant to organisational
development and developing people, because EQ principles provide a new way to
understand and assess people's behaviours, management styles, attitudes, interpersonal
skills, and potential. Emotional Intelligence Quotient is an important consideration
in all aspects of an organisation: human resources planning, job profiling,
recruitment interviewing and selection, management development, customer relations
and customer service, etc. The good news is, unlike IQ, EQ skills can be developed
and improved over time.
EQ - A measure of one's emotional intelligence, as defined by the ability to
use both emotional and cognitive thought. Emotional intelligence skills include
but are not limited to empathy, intuition, creativity, flexibility, resilience,
stress management, leadership, integrity, authenticity, intrapersonal skills
and interpersonal skills. It involves the lower and central sections of the
brain, called the limbic system. It also primarily involves the amygdala, which
has the ability to scan everything that's happening to us moment to moment to
see if it is a threat. As defined by Dr Daniel Goleman, the components of emotional
intelligence are "simple, yet powerful enough to effect change." Hence,
if Goleman and Charles Darwin are to be believed, it is emotionally intelligent
individuals who are most able to adapt to dynamic environments and therefore
most likely to survive.
Comparing EQ and IQ
- Appealing to emotions to convince someone rather
than using facts alone
- Using your emotions in addition to your cognitive
abilities to function rather than relying solely on logic
- Knowing how and why vs knowing what
- Knowing how to motivate separate individuals as
opposed to treating everyone the same way
- Understanding and controlling your emotions to use
them for something vs. Letting your emotions control you because you do not
know how to deal with them.
The hallmarks of EQ are self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and
social skills. Those with high EQ are motivated, self-disciplined, aspire to
excellence, continually seek reskilling and learning and add value. These qualities
sustain long term business development and build strong corporate cultures that
promote high morale and prevent loss of talent.
But wait, there is more. Now we have Spiritual Quotient (SQ). While IQ allows
us to think and EQ helps us to relate, SQ allows us to do both these things
during times of rapid change. IQ and EQ were sufficient in a relatively static
world. SQ provides the linkage in times of paradigm shift and chaos. Zohar and
Marshall (1997): By their definition spiritual intelligence is the intelligence
with which we access our deepest meanings, purposes, and highest motivations.
It is the intelligence that makes us whole, that gives us our integrity. It
is the soul's intelligence, the intelligence of the deep self. It is the intelligence
with which we ask fundamental questions and with which we reframe our answers.
The word 'spiritual' in relation to the intelligence has no necessary connection
with organised religion. A person may be high in SQ but have no religious faith
or belief of any kind. Equally, a person may be very religious but low in SQ.
The word spiritual in the Zohar/Marshal concept comes from the Latin word spiritus,
which means, 'that which gives life or vitality to a system.'
Zohar and Marshall introduced 12 qualities of SQ. They derive these principles
from the qualities that define complex adaptive systems. In biology, complex
adaptive systems are living systems that create order out of chaos, they create
order and information.
Those principles are:
Self-awareness: Knowing what I believe in and value,
and what deeply motivates me
Spontaneity: Living in and being responsive to the
Being vision- and value-led: Acting from principles
and deep beliefs, and living accordingly
Holism: Seeing larger patterns, relationships, and
connections; having a sense of belonging
Compassion: Having the quality of feeling-with
and deep empathy
Celebration of diversity: Valuing other people for
their differences, not despite them
Field independence: Standing against the crowd and
having one's own convictions
Humility: Having the sense of being a player in a
larger drama, of one's true place in the world
Tendency to ask fundamental 'why questions:
Needing to understand things and get to the bottom of them
Ability to reframe: Standing back from a situation
or problem and seeing the bigger picture; seeing problems in a wider context
Positive use of adversity: Learning and growing from
mistakes, setbacks, and suffering
Sense of vocation: Feeling called upon to serve, to
give something back.
Those with high SQ have the capacity to question, think creatively, change the
rules, work effectively in changing situations by playing with the boundaries,
break through obstacles and being innovative. Our SQ encourages us to see the
bigger picture, to be co-creators of the world in which we live.
Outstanding performers have high IQ, high EQ and high SQ. This makes them alive,
dynamic, sociable and innovative. You are unlikely therefore, to find many of
them in traditional organisations.
While IQ allows us to analyse what 'is' - the traditional role of academia -
and EQ helps us to adapt to the world as it changes, it is SQ that has us transform
our world into a whole new order of being. The way to develop our IQ is quite
different from that which develops our EQ, which is different again from that
which develops our SQ. What is exciting is that there are holistic methodologies
available that allow us to develop all three simultaneously in ways that enrich
our lives and add value. The trick is to find and use such methodologies effectively.
The author is director, Oasis Human Resources