Comments on a recent blog by Daniel Goleman: Do You Make This One Big Mistake About Emotional Intelligence?

I follow Daniel Goleman on Twitter and recently he posted a very interesting blog on his LinkedIn page: Do You Make This One Big Mistake About Emotional Intelligence?

According to Goleman he winces every time he hears “She’s got a high EQ,” or “He doesn’t have any EQ.”  This is because there is no single score that sums up a person’s emotional intelligence.  Instead Goleman refers to his original 1995 model.  There are four domains of EI: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. Self-awareness and social awareness refer to what we know about ourselves and others; self-management and relationship management are what we do with that information.  Each person has a unique combination of positions on these four domains.

Golemn then breaks down the four domains in his emotional intelligence matrix into 12 competencies which again will differ for each individual.  Competencies are learned and learnable capacities that contribute to performance at work and in life.  Competence indicates sufficiency of knowledge and skills that enable someone to act in a wide variety of situations.  Goleman’s analog for the competency model is a blood test where you can have an out-of-range number for cholesterol but be normal for white blood cells.

How do you find out where you are positioned on a competency spectrum?  Goleman recommends a 360-degree assessment from people who work with you, know you well, and whose opinions you trust.

It is here I differ with Goleman.  I think the practical key to developing your emotional intelligence is understanding your temperament which I define as your genetic emotional pre-disposition.  Social factors are important and will effect your competency levels but is your genes that really effect the results.  Kings College in London runs the Twins UK study of 12, 000 identical twins.  One study demonstrated that genes were twice as important as teachers and schools in determining exam results.

That is why I use and teach the 7MTF/Humm model of temperament in my Practical Emotional Intelligence workshops.

On a final note I am so glad Goleman explains how and why he removed motivation from his model.  It is unbelievable how many people assert there are five parts to Goleman’s model.  After seeing research that showed motivation – the now outdated fifth part – was handled by self-management, Goleman scrapped motivation.  People who have only read his early Harvard Business Review article, or his original book, Emotional Intelligence, still make that error.

This blog was first published on LinkedIn



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Chris Golis - Author


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