The phrase emotional intelligence, or EQ, has been popular for over 20 years and has been used in many contexts—often by businesses to describe what they look for in managers or to justify career advancement. However, it is a nebulous term that means different things to different people. Given the wide range of attributes that experts ascribe to the term, we are all inclined to claim that we have excellent EQ and can point to specific traits to support our claims.

Nigel J. Wright of Miles Mediation & Arbitration. (Courtesy photo) Nigel J. Wright of Miles Mediation & Arbitration. (Courtesy photo)

However, as lawyers, our reasons for seeking this nomenclature rarely get hung up on the first part of the phrase and often focus too much on the second half of the phase.

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