Part One: What’s the EQ of Your IT Leaders?

What the heck is EQ, and why does it matter?

Here is the problem all HR professionals and IT hiring managers face when trying to find that perfect candidate to lead their department and help grow their company:

How do we know that our chosen candidate will have the leadership style that both inspires and collaborates with the current IT team?

A common question across all business sectors, that’s frequently left with an unsubstantiated answer.  However, in the IT sector, it can be even more ambiguous. Every workplace is comprised of people with different strengths, personalities and emotions, which can greatly affect the way they work. IT employees operate in even more varied ways: some work in an individual environment only, others operate in small groups, whiles still others collaborate in large groups.

Today, Emotional Intelligence(EI) or Emotional Quotient Indexing(EQI) is quickly being adopted to reduce the risk of a newly hired candidate in a critical position.   EI is defined as an individual’s awareness that emotions can drive our behavior and impact people (positively and negatively), and learning how to manage those emotions – both our own and others – especially when we are under pressure will determine the degree in which a person will function as a leader or a collaborative team member. In a recent University of Florida study, having “emotional intelligence increases a professional’s chances of being more accepted on teams and considered for future leadership positions.”

So how does an IT professional measure up in terms of EQ.  Per a 1999 study, frequently cited today in other like studies, by Multi-Health Systems, IT professionals were found to have an “average EQ score of 97.5, IT people were found to have a lower overall EQ than most groups that have been examined (e.g. human resources professionals tested had an average EQ of 110).  Among the IT groups, the highest EQ went to the technical support specialists, and the lowest was scored by programmers.  The MIS group was the second highest scorers.”

IT Role

 Average EQ

 Tech Support 113
 MIS 110
 Network Admin 103
 System Analysts 99
 Programmers 92


EQ matters for all businesses, but for an IT team in a constant state of change, EQ can make a financial difference in attrition reduction, recruitment, and productivity costs.  At CultureFit we consider the candidates from both a skills and cultural fit. After nearly 20 years of experience we uniquely understand the importance of hiring the right candidate the first time.  Talk to one of our IT Staffing Professionals at CultureFit to learn more.