You’ll be asked questions based on the job requirements, but the hiring manager will be secretly evaluating your IQ, EQ, CQ and AQ.

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You finished your job interview and sighed in relief as you walked out of the office building. You felt like it went well, but had a difficult time trying to read the face of the hiring manager during the discussion.

You tried paying attention to the interviewers’ nonverbal cues for important clues as to what she thought of you. But you couldn’t seem to get a read on the hiring manager, based on her nonverbal communication. She would be a great poker player, you thought to yourself.

Even though you came to the interview prepared, you’re feeling like there was more that the hiring manager was thinking about you than just the questions she was asking.

Sound familiar? You’re right. Sure, hiring managers are listening to your answers, but they’re also going beyond the questions and answers to try to figure out whether you’ll be the best person for the job.

Most likely, the hiring manager will be secretly evaluating your IQ, EQ, CQ and AQ. Let’s break those down.

IQ (intelligence quotient): Is this person smart enough to do the job? This doesn’t mean they’re looking for someone with a genius IQ. It means they’re looking for someone who can handle the requirements of the job and who also has the capacity to quickly learn new things and incorporate their learning and professional development into the job.

EQ (emotional intelligence): How self-aware is this person? Does he or she understand their strengths and weaknesses? Do they understand their emotions and how their behavior affects others? Do they think before reacting to situations? Are they internally or externally motivated? How good is this person at identifying the needs of those around them? How good are their communication skills?

CQ (connectional quotient, commonly known as connectional intelligence): Connectional intelligence is the ability to use knowledge and experience combined with data to make connections — and then turn those connectional insights into meaningful, usable information. How good is this person at seeing patterns and connections in their daily activity? When he or she encounters a complex challenge or project, how do they analyze it, organize resources and come up with innovative solutions?

AQ (adversity quotient): How resilient is this person when dealing with adversity? How does he or she respond to difficult or stressful situations? Does this person have that special blend of persistence and passion (grit) that will help them be successful in this job?

The next time you’re on your way to a job interview, be prepared to answer questions based on the job requirements listed in the job posting. But know that, most likely, the hiring manager will be secretly evaluating your IQ, EQ, CQ and AQ.

Lisa Quast is a certified executive coach, and the author of the book Secrets of a Hiring Manager Turned Career Coach. Email her at