Rhodes Wrap: SQ – Managerial Wisdom from the East

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by: Alain Thys

Travelling the globe on behalf of her employer, Ana Tavis, the Global Head of Talent Management at Nokia, does have stories which few dinner companions I ever met can rival.  My favourite of last night is one of the gems she picked up in India, when visiting Nokia's partner company WIPRO.

After the IQ (measuring Intelligence) and EQ (measuring Empathy), Wipro is currently considering SQ as a variable for evaluating their managers.  SQ or (Spiritual Quotient) basically measures the ability for individuals/managers to "inspire" the one they work with through a combination of passion, inner-balance and integrity.

Apparently it is a rapidly spreading belief in India, that a high SQ is a strong determinant for business success, and companies should actively encourage their managers to develop their skills in this field.

What was even more interesting to me, however, is that none of the Western guests at the table (or in the audience who listened to Ana speak earlier), had ever heard of the SQ concept.  This while the skill to inspire makes perfect sense for a manager.

Maybe us Westeners should start listening a little more to the management theories and developments which are being developed in the East.  This as I have a feeling it won't be long until we're competing on more than labour costs alone.