Do managers need emotional intelligence to manage successfully in the workplace? Why or why not? The concept of emotional intelligence (EI) is a relatively new concept, however holds great importance for managers in terms of selection and performance of employees in the workplace. Emotional intelligence is the ability to work well with people and people’s emotion both on and off the job (Samad, 2009, p165) and is arguably essential in managing a successful and cohesive organisation. Although many argue that emotional intelligence is a pertinent aspect of managing a successful business, evidence suggests flaws in the model and insufficient empirical evidence to support its importance. Overall, emotional intelligence offers an understanding of leadership and teamwork within an organisation, however, there is some confusion and contradiction within the model and it’s application.
Leadership, for both the manager and employee, is heavily influenced by emotion, making emotional intelligence especially relevant. Recent research has found that effective leaders consistently have a high level of EI and that EI is a better predictor of life success (Hicks & Dess, 2008, p18). The four aspects of emotional intelligence put forward by Jennifer M. George the appraisal and expression of emotion, use of emotions to enhance cognitive processes and decision-making, knowledge about emotions and management of emotions (George, 2005, p1035) play a significant role in effective leadership. A manager must be aware of the emotions of the employee, as it relates directly to their productivity and enjoyment. A leader with high emotional intelligence is more equipped to identify and provide support when employees are faced with an emotionally challenging situation. Managers can use emotion to inspire employees about the objectives of the organisation, leading to more efficient and effective work within their organisation, while creating trust and loyalty among employees. Leaders...
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