The Next Level of Emotional Intelligence
When Daniel Goleman published his seminal book Emotional Intelligence more than a decade ago, the business world began to open up to his ideas about the importance of managing emotions.
Today, developing emotional intelligence has become a vital skill for businesspeople when they interact with customers and each other, and we have only just begun to understand the valuable part that emotions play in our daily decision making. Taking that understanding to the next level with the latest scientific brain research and thousands of studies on the reactions of people to emotional input, researcher Dan Hill has turned the work of his company, Sensory Logic, into a guidebook to making the most of the human emotional response.
In Emotionomics: Leveraging Emotions for Business Success, Hill connects readers to the feelings within them that were once nearly impossible to measure. That connection is now a solid link thanks to Sensory Logic’s research into the ways our faces react with unconscious emotion when we are
stimulated by commercials or other branding. Hill breaks the traditional belief in pure rationality in half by demonstrating that rational reasons alone are not enough to drive us to the outcomes desired by marketers, advertisers and other business interests. Instead, through extensive research and amazing case studies, Hill describes how “a company’s profitability depends on how the targeted market internalizes its emotional response to whatever experience it has regarding that company.”
Higher Job Performance
That emotional response is what Hill and his people at Sensory Logic have been measuring for years while charting the facial expressions of test subjects as they watch commercials or other market offerings. While helping ad agencies figure out how to connect with customers, Hill has learned many important lessons about how we can connect emotionally with others. When we know how to connect, he explains, we can then satisfy the needs of our customers, our employees and everyone else.
To show marketers why forming an emotional connection with customers is important, Hill points out that one study in 2002 of 23,000 consumers found that emotions are “twice as important as ‘facts’ in the process by which people make buying decisions.” Connecting emotions to productivity, Hill cites a Time magazine article from 2005 that reported “the emotional happiness present in employees can account for 10 to 25 percent higher job performance.”
After introducing the main ideas of his book - including the amazing accuracy with which researchers can judge a person’s emotional reactions by watching their facial responses and the ways these responses can be combined with traditional research - Hill delves into the depths of human emotions and why they matter.
Along the way, readers learn how emotional responses drive rational responses more than rationality drives our emotions because of the brain’s hardwiring, which is based more in primitive responses than was believed back in the early part of the 20th century. This makes sense now that we can track the brain’s psychological activity and see how our conscious thoughts are only a small part of what is going on inside our brain at any moment.
Since we now know that visual imagery and other nonverbal forms of communication are far more important than most other mental inputs, it is easier to understand the importance of emotions in the creation of value. When we study the facial coding that accompanies those emotions, we learn that subconscious responses can be measured with a great level of accuracy.
The valuable lessons found in Emotionomics not only take the ideas of Emotional Intelligence to the next level, but also measure them and demonstrate how they can be used to improve businesses and the feelings people have about businesses.