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Beyond IQ

August 31, 2010

Intelligence is overrated.

IQ tests are used to give an idea of logical and technical intelligence. They are often prerequisites for rising to the top ranks of business today. They are necessary, but are not nearly sufficient for going further and becoming successful. On their own, they do not help you to stand out and rise above everyone else.

Instead of exclusively focusing on your conventional intelligence quotient, you should spend some time strengthening your interpersonal skills, which are EQ (Emotional Intelligence) and MQ (Moral Intelligence). These concepts may be elusive and difficult to measure, but their significance is far greater than IQ. A strong EQ and MQ can be a great advantage to have over your competition.

EQ is the more well known of the two, and in brief it is about:
* Being aware of your own feelings and those of others
* Regulating these feelings in yourself and others
* Using feelings that are appropriate to the situation
* Self-motivation
* Acknowledging the feelings of others
* Handling relationships

MQ directly follows EQ as it deals with your own integrity, responsibility, sympathy, and forgiveness. The way in which we treat ourselves is the way others come to treat us. Besides keeping appointments, maintaining one’s integrity, and being honest, the following components are of great importance in order to be moral and ethical:

Responsibility: Only people who take responsibility for their actions and the consequences of these actions will be capable of having an ethical and moral standard.

Sympathy: This is vital as sympathy and care for others do not just communicate our respect and understanding of others, but they create at the same time a climate where others will be more understanding with us when the need arises.

Forgiveness: It is about acceptance and tolerance of people’s shortcomings and awareness of our own shortcomings. People have a tendency to be obstinate, inflexible, and find it difficult to commit themselves to others. Forgiveness deals with the way in which we relate to ourselves and how we relate to others.

Research carried out by the Nobel Prize winner Israeli-American psychologist, Professor Daniel Kahneman, demonstrates that EQ brings more success in life than intellectual or technical skill. Only 15% of our success is based on our professional/technical knowledge and around 85% is based upon knowledge of human behavior. This surprising result has been verified by research results from the Carnegie Institute of Technology and substantiates the importance of emotional intelligence. The golden elements included in this 85% are:

* EQ (Emotional intelligence)
* BQ (Body intelligence)
* MQ (Moral intelligence)
* Communicative abilities

Pie ChartOnly 15% of our success is based upon our professional/technical knowledge and experience

This means that a person who has the best theoretical training from the best university, but has poor interpersonal skills will not perform as well as a person who has a lower level of education from a less prestigious university who has good interpersonal skills.

It is certainly good to be an intelligent thinker and have a high IQ; this is definitely a good asset to have. However, it is important to realize that it is not enough. Your IQ helps you personally, but EQ and MQ can help everyone around you. If you can master the complexities of human emotions, you will know how to act in any situation.

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