Published on: Monday, January 31, 2011
Cultural Intelligence: How a High CQ Can Help You Land Your Dream Job!
An impressive GPA and a high IQ certainly can't hurt in today's job market, but they're no guarantee of getting an interview, much less a job. But a high CQ (cultural intelligence quotient) is
an increasingly sought-after capability by many employers. In today's competitive job market, candidates who demonstrate cultural intelligence have an edge for landing a job in many businesses. Even if the job doesn't require any international travel, managers and HR departments are realizing the importance of having culturally savvy employees who can dynamically meet the challenges of serving a diverse customer base at home and abroad as well as becoming effective participants of culturally diverse teams.
Cultural intelligence is defined as the capability to function effectively across national, ethnic and organizational cultures
. You've heard about IQ and EQ. CQ stems from this same body of research on the various forms of intelligence needed to be a successful in today's workforce. CQ is a set of capabilities and skills proven to give employees and their organizations a competitive edge in our shrinking world.
Cultural intelligence includes four different capabilities:
Here's an overview of how companies are screening candidates for cultural intelligence in these four areas:CQ Drive: Your level of interest, confidence and drive to adapt cross-culturally
CQ Knowledge: Your understanding of cross-cultural issues and differences
- To what degree do you show an interest in different cultures?
- Have you sought out opportunities to work with colleagues from different backgrounds?
- Are you confident you can succeed in cross-cultural situations?
CQ Strategy: Your ability to plan and make sense of culturally diverse experiences
- Do you demonstrate insight into how culture influences your decision-making?
- Can you describe the basic cultural differences that exist among the cultures where the organization works?
- Do you speak another language?
CQ Action: Your ability to adapt verbal and nonverbal actions appropriately when interacting cross-culturally
- How do you demonstrate awareness of yourself and others?
- Do you plan differently for cross-cultural interactions and work?
- Do you check back to see if your cross-cultural behavior is effective?
- Can you alter your communication for various contexts?
- Do you demonstrate flexible negotiation skills?
- To what degree do you flex your behavior when working with people and projects in different cultural contexts?
Managers and human resource departments realize the vision and values of their organization are ultimately whatever experience customers have any time they encounter a team member. The support person answering emails and returning phone calls is the organization to the individual on the other end of that email or phone call. The faculty member behind closed doors in the classroom is
that university to his students. The nurse treating the immigrant is
the hospital to that patient and her family.
High CQ is particularly sought in candidates seeking management and executive-level positions. The globalization of business is lunging forward with racing speed. Research by world-renown scholars across more than 30 countries finds that cultural intelligence is the single greatest difference between leaders who thrive in today's multicultural environment and those who become obsolete.There are a number of personal benefits you get from enhancing your cultural intelligence, some of which include: career advancement, increased creativity, expanded global networks, stronger negotiating power for a higher salary, and a chance to play a part in making the world a better place. And CQ is something anyone can develop and grow. Get a leg up securing your dream job by trying some of the following:
- Review the questions companies are using to screen candidates in the four areas of CQ and anticipate your response.
- Take a cross-cultural assignment any time you have the chance. Learn all you can.
- Learn more about CQ assessments and training available at The Cultural Intelligence Center.
Developing CQ is proven to enhance your competitive edge in the current job market — whether it's retaining your position or securing a new one. Cultural intelligence contributes to your personal development as a leader and best of all, it allows you to treat people with a great degree of respect and dignity, whatever their cultural background.