Adversity Quotient: The New Key for Your Success

Human mindset is considered to be the most complex machine on earth. Psychologists have always sought to explain why we act the way we do or the way our mind functions. Human beings have various intellectual capacities and there are various assessments that are available to evaluate a human’s mind. Most of us are familiar with IQ or EQ, but there’s one such relatively new measure called Adversity Quotient or AQ.

So, what is Adversity Quotient or AQ?

AQ is a measure of your hardwired pattern of response to adversity. If emotional quotient is one’s ability to handle emotions well, then adversity quotient is the ability to handle adversities well. It is known by many other names: grit, resiliency, fortitude, persistence, tenacity, and self-sufficiency. AQ is often associated with stability, strength, endurability and power. Improving AQ can have a huge effect on your performance, productivity, problem solving, innovation, your energy, verve, quality of life, even your longevity and overall health. AQ is the closest we have to true bedrock of human endeavor, kind of an epicenter of human effectiveness.

It’s the global gold standard for being able to measure through the AQ Profile and measurably improve through the AQ training and programs and solutions, the most important thing, which is, who you are and how you respond to the tough stuff.

We all have heard about IQ (Intelligence Quotient) and EQ (Emotional Quotient). But every profession needs adaptability and flexibility, thus the role of AQ. Your IQ gets you through the examinations to become qualified, then your EQ helps you connect with an interviewer, land a job and develop relationships with clients and colleagues. Then, when systems change or aspects of work are automated, you need AQ to accommodate this innovation and adapt to new ways of performing your role.

Natalie Fratto, a New York-based vice president at Goldman Sachs says AQ is not just the ability to absorb new information, but the ability to work out what’s important, unlearn outdated knowledge, resolve obstacles, and make a conscious effort to improve. AQ also includes versatility, curiosity, confidence, endurance and the desire to solve problems.

In this dynamic world, we do know that the workplace is very prone to change. The least we can do is prepare both ourselves and our workplace for the unpredictability of the future. At the end of the day, those who succeed aren’t those who failed — but the ones who did not quit.


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