How HR Persons or Recruiters Can Enhance Their Skills with Social Intelligence
Social intelligence can enrich the repertoire of HR persons by helping them decipher people's real emotional-states through observing nonverbal cues. It’s a valuable tool for hiring, appraisal or even exit interviews
While the domain of management counts 5 M’s of "Man, Machine, Money, Material and Methods" as main resources (with a 6th M 'Mother-nature' also starting to make its way into the list), the fact remains that 'Man' - while treating the word more as a gender neutral term - is not just 'a resource' but 'the Source'.
True! Human resource is not just yet another cog in the wheel. People go way beyond just being a headcount or some roles. They form the basic building block of an organization, making it necessarily a social entity. And thus, the quality of people, rightness of their attitude and their fit with the culture are the most important aspects of organization building.
That is what makes job of an HR person or a recruiter extremely important. For it is the HR person that recruits, refines and retains 'talent'. And for all these HR pursuits, Social Intelligence paves the way most effectively. We define Social intelligence as 'Observing nonverbal behavior and understanding emotions for greater interpersonal effectiveness and self-management'. It is the skill that provides the most significant repertoire for an HR person.
Let's see it this way! What is the cost of selecting a wrong person in your organization? Well! The list of all that can consequently go wrong is endless - Non-performance, decline in team-morale, misrepresentation in front of the client, chances of misconduct, breach in information-security and even corporate frauds.
But more importantly, what is the cost of rejecting a right person for your organization? Well! The list can still be pretty long - lapse in talent management, loss of a potential competitive-edge, mediocrity in performance or 'cultural stagnant' that could have been avoided by facilitation of the timely inflow of fresh intellect.
So you can see that it is all about that 'moment of truth' when an HR person is in front of a potential candidate - the interview. Well! While the recruitment tools like psychometric tests can add value, still they have serious limitations, because they can be manipulated with some street-smartness on candidate's part. Same is the case with other tools like background check or reference check. Moreover, they assume a person to be static and fail to factor-in the changing of a person. Also they cannot be used real-time, as a companion in the process.
Social intelligence overcomes these loopholes to a great extent. An HR person trained in this skill can understand candidates' unadulterated emotional-states, complexes or insecurities by observing and correctly interpreting their expressions, gestures and postures. While words can be manipulative, these 'nonverbal cues' with their origins in deeper and evolutionary older parts of the brain, represent a person's real-self to the fullest.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sandeep Atre, PhD is the Founder-Director of Socialigence. He is also one of the Founder-Directors of CH EdgeMakers – a leading ‘Coaching and Training’ group of Central India. In his career of close to one and a half decade, he has trained thousands of students, and professionals of more than fifty corporate & institutional clients.