I am a consultant to employers and, as such, see the insides of a lot of different organizations. I enjoy seeing, meeting and experiencing the various teams and the workplaces in which they reside and function…or in some cases don’t function.
Reading an article this morning reminded me that there is a necessary companion to the measurement of “IQ” and that is the importance of “EQ”. Daniel Goleman authored a book in 1995 titled “Emotional Intelligence; Why It Can Matter More Than IQ” that discussed how people’s ability to understand other’s emotions and motivations are very important to peace and productivity in the workplace.
Since I consult with WFA Staffing, typically on matters related to employee benefits and especially relating to health care programs, I am more attuned to the workplace than I might have been earlier. As I reflect on the workplaces to which I have been exposed in a career spanning several decades, I can still vividly recall those situations where an emotional ‘meltdown’ resulted in a lot of damage being done to the place of employment.
It is easier to calibrate a person’s IQ than it is to determine the person’s EQ or emotional intelligence as advanced in Goleman’s book.
If you think back over your experiences, there is probably a stand-out or two in the arena of EQ that comes to mind. I know that to be true in my recollections. In virtually every case the EQ problems were much more damaging to the organization than were the damages created by people lacking in basic intelligence. People can be taught to attain the work-related intelligence levels we might need, but people with emotion-based issues do not respond well to being told of those issues and taught how to effectively overcome them. Most of us are not very well prepared to deal with these kinds of situations either.
Emotion-driven issues in the workplace can shut down productivity; in some cases, those problems can cost key players.
This speaks to the importance of a set of independent and well-experienced eyes being relied upon by employers in hiring as well as in the world of benefits given the emotional attachment people develop with their employer-based benefits. Just as an emotional outburst involving key people can be devastating, so too can ill-thought or communicated changes in benefit plans be devastating. We are in a world of much heightened senses so far as benefits given the ups and downs of the Affordable Care Act roll-out.
If you think an outside opinion might be helpful, WFA Staffing can put us in touch with each other. My work is strictly fee-driven so there are no ‘sacred cows’ to be nourished and worshipped. You get what I consider to be the unvarnished truth based on over three decades of experience. The benefits world has changed significantly as have the rules surrounding benefits. Emotional detachment is a gift that I can bring to your conference room table. I live in this world full-time which gives you some idea of how warped I must be. 🙂