Emotional Intelligence is a key component of Bluffton University’s MBA program
For decades, organizations have used intelligence quotient or IQ to measure and predict future success. However, in the 1990s, a new concept emerged as an alternative. That measurement is known as Emotional Intelligence or EI. Dr. George Lehman, Howard Raid Endowed Chair and professor of business, explored the practical uses of both concepts and shared his findings during a colloquium presentation called, A Primer on Emotional Intelligence.
“Intelligence by IQ identifies a wide range of abilities that predicts performance on a wide range of tests, EI fills in the gaps,” said Dr. Lehman. “You can be a brilliant man without a brain in your head.”
During the presentation Dr. Lehman explained the differences between EI and IQ. One of the major differences is that IQ will remain basically unchanged throughout a person’s life. “EI is assumed to be the opposite. We can work and change and could have a very different empathy score,” said Dr. Lehman.
Over the summer, Dr. Lehman assessed himself using an emotional intelligence test developed by the Hay Group. The Hay Group describes emotional intelligence as, “the ability to bring out the best in ourselves and others. The difference between an average performer and an outstanding one.” Lehman also completed an in-depth analysis of his EI by having peers assess his emotional intelligence. He says the data reveals insight that can help an institution change its climate. The ideas of emotional intelligence are now being used in Bluffton’s Master of Business Administration program.
“In many ways, for students in the MBA program, it confirms what we are teaching anyhow. It shouldn’t feel like foreign ideas to them.”
Dr. Lehman says several classes directly address these skills even if they don’t use the language of EI. However, students who take an elective on leadership will take the assessment from the Hay Group. He believes the concepts will strengthen the leadership skills of the MBA students.
“Intellectually, brilliant leadership isn’t necessarily effective leadership,” said Dr. Lehman. “The higher you go in an organization, you have to have a level of intelligence, competence to handle complex ideas, but what distinguishes the successful person is the way they deal with emotional intelligence.”
As the Howard Raid chair, Dr. Lehman leads a colloquium each year to share his research. Lehman’s presentations have ranged from the business practices of chocolate giants Cadbury and Hershey to Amish business models in his hometown of Berne, Ind.
"Intelligence by IQ identifies a wide range of abilities that predicts performance on a wide range of tests, EI fills in the gaps. You can be a brilliant man without a brain in your head.”