It’s no surprise that being successful in today’s work environment means having the right mix of hard and soft skills. While your student loans might indicate that hard skills are more important, soft skills like effective communication, working with teams, and problem-solving have just as much—if not more—to do with your career advancement. This idea has been popularized under the moniker of emotional quotient (EQ) or emotional intelligence, and there are countless articles about the importance of this trait.
Even with all the buzz around EQ, we found there was limited research into how businesses should be adopting a more emotionally aware approach to interacting with their customers. And this happens to be especially important in considered purchase industries (financial services, insurance, healthcare etc.) where the purchase process is inherently more stressful.
For example, taking out a mortgage is not only a difficult process for many people, but involves a long-term commitment and tends to be influenced heavily by emotion (“This is where our kids will group up!”). Interacting with a human on the phone or in person, who can meet you on your level, can be critical to whether you decide to purchase from that lender.
To better understand what consumers need to feel comfortable when making these important purchases, and the impact artificial intelligence (AI) will have, Invoca surveyed 1,000 consumers in the U.S. We combined our findings with insights from Adobe’s Experience Index into our new report: “Emotions Win: What Customers Expect in the Age of AI.”
Some of the findings include:
- 71% of millennial respondents have heard of EQ, compared to just 34% of those 55 and older.
- Consumers rank problem-solving, support, and efficiency as the most important characteristics when interacting with a brand.
- 25% of all respondents most value a salesperson’s ability to respond to their emotions at the right time, while 31% of millennials singled out that attribute as most important.
- 29% of respondents believe it’s probable that voice AI tools can offer them a sense of EQ in the near future.