Sunday, January 4, 2009

Emotional Quotient

Buck (1985) has defined emotion as the process by which motivational potential is realized or ‘read out’, when activated by challenging stimuli. In other words, emotion is seen as a ‘read out’ mechanism carrying information about motivational systems. To exhibit emotions is very easy but doing it at the right time, at the right place, with the right person and to the right degree is difficult. The management of emotions has given rise to the most talked about term “Emotional Intelligence” or “Emotional Quotient”.

Emotional Intelligence motivates employees to pursue their unique potential and purpose, and activates innermost potential values and aspirations, transforming them from things they think about, to what they do. Emotional Intelligence enables one to learn, to acknowledge and understand feeling in ourselves and in others and that we appropriately respond to them, effectively applying the information and energy of emotions in our daily life and work. Cooper and Sawaf (1997) define emotional intelligence as the ability to sense, understand and effectively apply the power and acumen of emotions as a source of human energy, information, connection and influence. Mayer and Salovey, (1993) define emotional intelligence as the ability to monitor one’s own and other’s feelings and emotions to discriminate among them, and to use this information to guide one’s thinking and action. Emotional intelligence involves the ability to perceive accurately, appraise, and express emotions; the ability to access and/or generate feelings when they facilitate thoughts; the ability to understand emotions and emotional knowledge and intellectual growth.

The term Emotional Intelligence encompasses the following five characteristics and abilities as discussed by Golman (1995).

1. Self-awareness: Knowing your emotions, recognizing feelings as they occur and discriminating between them is being emotionally literate.

2. Mood Management: Handling feelings so that they are relevant to the current situation and you react appropriately.

3. Self-motivation: “Gathering up” your feelings and directing yourself towards a goal, despite self-doubt, inertia and impulsiveness. More responsible, better ability to focus on the task at hand and pay attention, less impulsive, more self controlled and improved scores on achievement tests.

4. Empathy: Recognizing feelings in others and tuning into their verbal and non verbal cues.

5. Managing relationships: Handling interpersonal interaction, conflict resolution, and negotiations.

Measures of Emotional Intelligence

EQ comprises various related components that strengthen emotional intelligence and give desired outcomes. There are 21 scales which best explains EQ. the scales are further grouped into 5 categories, namely current environment, literacy, competencies, values and believes, and outcomes. Cooper and Sawaf (1997) have reported EQ map in which total score on each scale is graded in one of the four levels – optimal, proficient, vulnerable and cautionary. Goleman (1995) developed another scale. The scale has various situations and scores and computed on the basis of responses to these situations.

There were no scales developed for Indian conditions. The present work was undertaken to develop a suitable self-report measure for Indian milieu. EIS was developed by Anukool Hyde, Sanjyot Pethe and Upinder Dhas.

The scale was administered on 200 executives and the scores obtained were subjected to factor analysis and ten factors were identified.

They are,

a) Self-awareness is being aware of oneself

b) Empathy is feeling and understanding the other person

c) Self motivation is being motivated internally

d) Emotional stability is when unnecessary emotions are not mixed with issues at hand and one can stay composed both at good and bad situations.

e) Managing relations is being able to encourage others to work. Even when things are not favorable. Perceived as friendly and outgoing.

f) Integrity is being able to stand up for ones beliefs and pursuing ones goals.

g) Self development is being able to identify and separate ones emotions and developing oneself even when the job does not demand it.

h) Value orientation is ability to maintain the standards of honesty and integrity.

i) Commitment is ability to meet commitments and keep promises. Organized and careful in one’s work.

j) Altruistic behavior is the ability to encourage people to take initiatives and handle conflicts around one self.

Internal-External locus of control is a personality scale intended to measure an important belief system, namely the extend to which an individual is controlled by
1) Internal Frame of Reference and
2) External Frame of Reference.

Internal Frame of Reference relates to the individual’s belief of being self motivated, self directed and self controlled.

External Frame of Reference on the other hand, relates to the individuals belief that environment, luck, fate and powerful play a dominant role in the influencing his behavior and the rewards and punishments he obtains.

The locus of control concept is formulated within the framework of the social learning theory of Rotter. The internal – external (I-E) dimension has been regarded as a continuum. The I-E locus is found to be related to:

1. Need for achievement

2. Striving for superiority

3. Competence

4. Personal causation or locus of causation

5. Anomie

The I-E locus of control can be regarded to have a close relationship with the belief in fatalism on the one hand or being self reliant on the other.

The original test had been constructed, standardized and validated for the American population by Rotter. The present scale is standardized on the Indian population by Dr. G.K. Valecha. A pilot study was undertaken by the author by administering the test to 589 college students from Bangalore. The final version of the test has 45 items, 34 of the items are scorable and 11 are fillers. The fillers in the test are meant for minimizing fake answers.

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