Emotional intelligence – increasingly important competence in the labour market?

Each of us took part in the recruitment process and wondered, as a Candidate or Employer, what in the case of this particular position will be, or is prioritized: experience, skills, completed projects, references and maybe soft competences. Which of these aspects will help choose the right person?

Today I would like to consider with you whether emotional intelligence can be the most important competence in the labour market and whether it has a decisive impact on the quality of the work done. According to Daniel Goleman (American psychologist and author of the bestseller “Emotional Intelligence”), emotional intelligence includes the ability to understand, manage and control oneself and one’s own emotions. It is the ability of self-motivation, empathy and social skills.

Emotional intelligence includes three key psychological competences – self relations, social – relations with others and praxeological competences (actions), i.e. the ability to perform tasks, actions and challenges. To make it easier for us to analyse the subject I will give examples of psychological competences: self-awareness, self-control, self-assessment, social: empathy, persuasion, leadership, cooperation and praxeological: conscientiousness, adaptation, motivation.

According to World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs Report (http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_Future_of_Jobs_2018.pdf) Emotional intelligence will be one of the 10 most important skills preferred by Employers in the coming years.

Why is emotional intelligence so highly rated among Employers around the world? Well, people who are emotionally intelligent:

  1. Are able to manage stress levels and are less likely to fall into emotional extremes – full emotional awareness and high self-control.
  2. Are able to cooperate more effectively with other team members – skilful cooperation.
  3. Put their needs aside, listening to the needs of others in order to react so that everyone in their company feels heard and understood – developed empathy.
  4. Are more open to feedback, especially if they could significantly improve their performance. Know the goals and strive to achieve them – optimal motivation.
  5. Quickly find themselves in a new environment, flexibly react to changing conditions and adapt to them – adaptation skills.
  6. They can set an example for others, because their influence and ability to talk will make them imitated by others. They remain assertive, draw the line and stick to their own assumptions – mature leadership.
  7. They are able to make better assessments and take into account how their decisions will affect others – correct self-assessment.

How can we improve our EQ (emotional intelligence)?

  1. Don’t react hastily, give yourself time to think and analyse the situation.
  2. Think about how your decision will affect the situation of other team members/cooperators.
  3. Show empathy, listen to others and observe their reactions.
  4. Talk to yourself every day and learn from your mistakes. Spend at least 5/10 minutes a day in dialogue with yourself and learn yourself – practice as regularly as you do in the gym – if you do, that is 😉
  5. Share ideas or motivate others.
  6. Stay calm, in times of crisis.
  7. Exercise your body language/speech, which can significantly affect your relationship with others.

Conclusions: In my career as a recruiter I meet many different personalities. I talk to people who are more and less open. Some show empathy, react calmly, others do not allow themselves to analyse, and their reaction is hasty and often has a negative impact on our business relationship. It is very different with every person, but if I could imagine a conversation with an ideal interlocutor, it would certainly be a person with a high level of emotional intelligence.

Summarizing all the recruitment processes I have completed or those I have talked about with clients, I find that more and more companies are looking not only for employees but also for “personalities”. These are people who are supposed to find themselves in a team and have a positive impact on its development.

I am pleased that Employers, apart from: experience, budget execution, completed projects, references, etc., more and more often pay attention to something beyond that. Companies start to notice the whole process of achieving professional results rather than the final result alone in the form of a quota or profit. Candidates with less experience but developed personality values and emotional maturity are appreciated and then trained in practical skills.

According to Goleman, “At most 20% of life’s success depends on the IQ. Then there is still 80 per cent of other interactions – a group of factors called emotional intelligence” (Gordon Dryden, Jeanette Vos, Revolution in Learning, ed. Moderski i S-ka, Poznań 2000, transl. Bożena Jóźwiak, p. 140).


  1. http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_Future_of_Jobs_2018.pdf
  2. https://www.fastcompany.com/3059481/7-reasons-why-emotional-intelligence-is-one-of-the-fastest-growing-job-skills
  3. https://advice.careerbuilder.co.uk/posts/6-ways-to-boost-your-eq-and-get-that-promotion
  4. file:///C:/Users/Pracownik/Downloads/ZZL(HRM)_2013_1(90)_Baczynska_A_Gorniak_M_87-97.pdf
  5. https://psychologiazycia.com/10-cech-osob-o-duzej-inteligencji-emocjonalnej/
  6. https://pl.wikiquote.org/wiki/Daniel_Goleman


Author: Marieta Rejkowska- Sales and Recruitment Consultant – Lobo HR.