Talent Connection Blog

Authors of the emotional intelligence book The EQ Edge: Emotional Intelligence and Your Success define emotional intelligence as the ability of an individual to form optimal relationships with other people through the attributes of hope, empathy, trust, integrity, honesty, creativity, resiliency, consequence-thinking, and optimism in order to build stronger social networks and manage difficult situations.

So how does this characteristic play a role in the recruiting process? In fact, companies are getting more efficient with their hiring processes. Instead of focusing on skills and experience, which can be taught and trained, hiring managers are now more focused on recruiting for soft skills—those that are embedded in the candidate’s personality, rather than being taught through employee training.

If you use this method, or are interested in trying it, there are some characteristics that you should be looking for to get a good idea of the candidate’s emotional intelligence. Try making a list of these characteristics and check them off during the interview to make sure you collected enough information:

  • Adaptability
  • Ability to influence others
  • Strong communication
  • Ability to negotiate
  • Problem-solving
  • Team building
  • Self-motivated

One major thing to remember about emotional intelligence is that it cannot be accurately studied through a personality test. Personality tests get their data from self-evaluation by the candidate that is taking the test. Our emotional intelligence is not something we can accurately report about ourselves. Instead, the way to obtain emotional intelligence information is to talk to the candidates—hearing how they reacted to certain situations and treat others.   

Emotional intelligence is a wonderful way to get insight into the deeper levels of the individuals you want to hire. Appealing to possible candidates with a recruiting process that focuses on emotional intelligence is an ideal way to improve the recruiting process and the hiring process overall.