Why is it that some people with high IQs and top grades at school fail to make an impact in business while some average students go on to become hugely successful in their careers? What is it that distinguishes the star performers in an organisation?


Emotional IntelligenceAccumulated research over 10 years shows that the key to success as a manger or entrepreneur, and in life, is EI. In fact, EI correlates more with success than IQ. When top managers fail, it is most often caused by lack of EI than a lack of smarts or technical skills. Emotionally intelligent people communicate effectively, form strong relationships, and create powerful coping strategies; emotionally unintelligent people don’t –no matter how high their IQs.


EI is based on advances in neurological research that have uncovered new information about how the brain functions. Interplay between the neocortex and amygdala has shown that many emotional responses happen witout our cognitve awareness. This suggests that our emotional responses are unconscious yet have a major impact on how we act and react to the world around us. We cannot leave our feelings behind when we go to work; feelings are a part of who we are.


EI can be measured and the good news is that it can also it be substantially strengthened and developed. With suitable training, our EI can improve considerably. That is a fancy way of saying that we can actually train ourselves to cope better with stress, to think before we act and to practise skills like optimism, empathy and interpersonal skills.