How is emotional intelligence compared in importance to a person's IQ?

Expert Answers
mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

A 1995 cover article "What Is Your Emotional IQ?" supports the contention that one's emotional stability and ability to navigate the social environment is of paramount importance in the working world. In fact, in some ways it is more important that having a high IQ.  For, the ability to get along with co-workers can mean promotions and stabiltiy and security in one's position. 

Certainly, the ability to harness one's emotions allows a person to think much more clearly and logically.  Likewise, the ability to discern the emotional state of others helps people facilitate communication with that person and avoid any possible problems. Emotional intelligence is presented as including the following:

  1. Self-awareness
  2. Self-regulation 
  3. Social skill 
  4. Motivation

Since these factors are so closely connected to one's intelligence, it seems difficult, if not impossible, to measure the value of Emotional Intelligence compared to Intelligence Quotient.  Instead, it may be that Emotional Intelligence is just another intelligence as Howard Garner contends about several others.

In light of the happenings on America's news in which highly intelligent people have committed desperate, self-destructive, and heinous acts, a high IQ is certainly no guarantee of success in life. And, with the depersonalization of society, emotional intelligence may well be the stabilizing factor that the high IQ needs.