Emotional intelligence is the future: I ran across a study (Van Rooy et al. 2005. Personality and Individual Differences, 38, 689–700) that found that women, blacks, and Hispanics score higher on the "emotional intelligence scale" or EIS. You know--the test that supposedly measures how well you perceive, understand, and manage emotions.
The authors write that, while the use of general mental ability tests raises adverse impact and legal concerns, businesses can avoid bias by using the EIS in the hiring process. They cite studies reporting that the use of emotional intelligence tests to aid the personnel selection process is on the increase.
It is just too easy to imagine this test becoming a commonplace in human resources departments. A test where women and poor minorities outperform men and whites??!! Give me one of those! Disadvantaged groups getting hired in large numbers without preferences??!!
Teamwork is so important now, and interpersonal skills are so essential in our service economy. It is an intelligence test of sorts, right? Plus, in this age of Oprah, it is just so great to focus on feelings! And if it doesn't help productivity, who cares?!
I can see it all now....