Emotional Intelligence 4.0: The Mother of All Revolutions

Emotional Intelligence 4.0: The Mother of All Revolutions

Brendan J. Gomez (People Transformers, Malaysia) and Patricia M. Ang (University of Nottingham, Malaysia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-5514-9.ch004


Covid-19 has created global chaos and change unprecedented in modern history. The reality of emerging from safe-houses to discover a planet with vastly different terrain – socially, economically and psychologically is no longer science-fiction. The pandemic has demonstrated the great need for IR4.0 with its technological advances that will mobilize local businesses and global economies. At the heart of both the adoption of advances and the creation of solutions in mitigating global crisis is the heart of the people – both organizational adopters of technology and everyday users. This chapter digs deep into our pain wherein human advances will require changes not only in technology, but in the very people that make up our organizations and economies. Herein, Emotional Intelligence 4.0 brings the combined power of our cognitive and emotional abilities in creating launch-pads with people solutions that hyper-drive us into future frontiers.
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Death Star Uncloaked

Imagine our moon was made up of 300 billion dollars’ worth of profitable resources, and out of nowhere it was destroyed by a beam so powerful, that it not only disintegrates the moon, but shatters every hope of feeding millions starving on our planet. Now open your eyes. It seems surreal that we live in a time where world economies and lives are shattered by the spread of Covid-19 and short-term strategies in containment that may have done more damage than the virus itself. Already each year, businesses burn almost USD200 to 300 billion in costs due to employee turnover, absenteeism, medical and legal costs (American Institute of Stress, 2014; Hassard et al, 2018). Let’s place this into perspective. USD200 billion per year is enough for us to achieve The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals of Zero Hunger in the world by 2030 (Fan, 2018). In essence, we burn up USD200 billion each year from employee and employer “burnout” that can be used to solve and end human suffering. Said another way, our suffering sustains other forms of suffering that destroys Mother Earth. Ironically, we are our own Death Star.

As the push to technologize industries reaches fervent levels, the options before us are mind-blowing. The concern comes when, for many, it is “heart-blowing” as well. Emotional toxicity in the workplace is similar to the silent killer, i.e. an attack on the sanctity of the workplace leading to “heart” failure.

Working is an emotional experience for all human beings. Emotions and the regulation of emotions color every aspect of our interactions in our human economy – both intrapersonal and interpersonal. From the stock market to decisions by shareholders, to how we hire and how we fire staff, to what technologies we want to advance, what schools we want to send our children to, to what careers we want to make a living from, and even to where we build our cities in and which planet we want to send our next rover to. Emotions can either facilitate or cloud our judgement, and this has been the most difficult for businesses to predict and control. More recently, during the Covid-19 crisis, we have observed how emotional fatigue and the inability to maintain employee engagement through work-at-home methods have impacted workforce recovery and productivity.

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