“E.I.” is the new IQ.
If you’ve worked in an office environment, suffered through a bout of inexplicable cold-shoulder treatment, or commiserated with a job-hunting millennial in recent years, you’ve engaged with emotional intelligence. But that doesn’t mean you totally understand what it is.
Also known as “E.I.,” emotional intelligence has to do with a person’s ability to interpret the feelings of others and respond to interpersonal issues at work and in life, said professor Fredrick Nafukho, head of Texas A&M University’s Educational Administration and Human Resource Development department.
It’s not a new concept, but use of this gauge of behavioral aptitude has been growing in popularity over the past few years.
Thing is, unlike IQ—the intelligence quotient calculated from a series of standardized tests—your emotional intelligence quotient (E.Q.) is far harder to sum up in a number.
“Tests…for measuring EQ are more recent and are still evolving,” Nafukho explained. “The mixed-model approach I use to quantify EQ involves analyzing intrapersonal skills, interpersonal skills, adaptability skills, stress management skills, and general mood skills.”
It’s easy to lack the self-awareness needed to figure out how high your own emotional intelligence quotient would be.