The Effects of Emotional Intelligence on Leadership

Emotional Intelligence
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Anneke Zwart
Student (University), Netherlands

The Effects of Emotional Intelligence on Leadership

It is well known nowadays that leadership is connected with emotions. Leaders who are able to manage their emotions and who show affinity towards employees are often seen as good leaders.

George (2000) mentions five points all containing emotional aspects that INCREASE the efficiency of leaders:
1. The ability to develop a shared feeling of goals/objective and to develop ways to achieve these goals.
2. The ability to make others aware of and let them appreciate the importance of their work.
3. Creating and maintaining enthusiasm, cooperation, optimism and a feeling of trust.
4. Stimulating flexibility in making decisions and in changes.
5. Developing and maintaining a valuable identity for a company.

The relationship between emotional intelligence and leadership is also analyzed by Antonakis et al. (2009). Interestingly Antonakis mentions two ways in which emotional intelligence affects leadership NEGATIVELY:
1. First, sensitivity to the emotions of other people decreases the quality of a leader. Namely, for these leaders who are sensitive to emotional states of others assign much importance to other’s opinions; as a result it is hard to operate in a way that is in line with the organizational vision.
2. Furthermore, sensitivity towards your own emotional states will increase the feeling that other people also are aware of your emotional states; these leaders will think about other’s opinions about them and as a result they will be hindered by these emotional states.
Sources:
Antonakis, J., Ashkanasy, N.M. and Dasborough, M.T. (2009). “Does Leadership need Emotional Intelligence?” The Leadership Quarterly.
George, J. M. (2000). Emotions and Leadership: The Role of Emotional Intelligence. Human Relations, 53, 1027−1055.

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