Human resources departments are now testing for emotional intelligence in an attempt to plug the gaps caused by the global skills crisis in e-commerce.
Promoted in the US by psychologist Daniel Goldman, the approach covers self-awareness, emotional management, self-motivation, empathy, relationship management, communication skills and personal style.
The idea is that companies facing rapid growth, such as those in the e-business sector, should constantly be on the look-out to promote those further down the pecking order who can display a high emotional quotient (EQ), if not the highest IQ when it comes to intellectual qualities.
One of the first firms in the UK to promote the use of emotional intelligence is management consultancy Breakthrough Technology. Its managing director Vip Vyas says, "An office assistant could be typing up a report, then suddenly they could be made office manager with five staff."
One of the first clients of Breakthrough is online recruitment company The Skills Market, which Vyas says is trying to build a flexible, learning-oriented, and open-minded culture which is matched to the company's business vision.
The Skills Market says it is using emotional intelligence in an attempt to recruit staff who can evolve and be adaptable.