Smart BearAs a small business owner, you certainly want to hire people who are smart enough to do the job – but hiring for intelligence alone isn’t optimal.

In Carol’s recent post on the Nextiva blog, “4 Reasons Why Small Businesses Need EQ as Much as IQ,” she shares why an employee’s Emotions Quotient (EQ) is also an important predictor of success for certain positions. Carol begins:

”Small business owners and their direct reports clearly need above-average intelligence to know how things work — from understanding the numbers to knowing every phase involved in getting their products or services to customers. Whether that knowledge comes from a MBA or experiential knowledge, a good Intelligence Quotient (IQ) is pretty much essential.

Still, facts and figures are only part of small business operation. An understanding of how customers and employees think and behave is just as important. This is known as an Emotions Quotient (EQ). For some people, it is a natural talent, so hiring a mix of high-IQ and high-EQ people provides a definite leg up in maintaining and growing your company.

You can also develop your own EQ by taking a course or even by searching “how to develop EQ” online. If you can’t differentiate between what people say and what they really mean, if people scratch their heads when you talk to them or if you have no clue about body language, you probably should consider developing a better EQ.

If you think you can’t afford the time to learn, maybe the following four EQ benefits will compel you to reconsider your position.

1. It’s a personalized motivator

Your small business benefits when your workers stretch beyond their defined jobs. It certainly helps when they can pitch in during rush seasons; but, just as important, many employees will stay longer when they have regular opportunities to learn and grow.

EQ helps you predict how much or what type of work each employee can handle. Challenging them beyond their current job descriptions can be a double-edged sword. Where one employee will become frustrated and angry, another will jump right in and get involved. When you instinctively know that frequent challenging task assignments make each work day more exciting for a specific employee, you can expect that person to stick around longer.

2. It helps in targeting work assignments

During the job interview, the resume provides discussion points about areas of experience and the discussion reveals whether that experience qualifies the person to perform a certain job at your company. With a well-honed EQ, however, you have a better opportunity to determine if your job opening and the applicant are really a good fit.”

You can read the rest of the post here.