Emotional Intelligence and Leadership Styles
Exploring the Relationship between Emotional Intelligence and Leadership Styles Among Information Technology Professionals
All around the world, information technology is evolving at an alarming rate, and it could be challenging keeping up with the growing changes that we are witnessing with it. This paper explored the relationship between emotional intelligence and leadership styles among information technology professionals. Does emotional intelligence predict leadership style and do leadership styles predict emotional intelligence components? A total of 185 participants were involved in this study. The leadership styles, which are comprised of transformational, transactional, and passive-avoidant, were measured by the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire - MLQ 5X (Bass & Avolio, 1995). The emotional intelligence components, which are comprised of perception of emotion, managing own emotions, managing others' emotions and utilization of emotion, were measured by the Schutte Self-Report Emotional Intelligence Test -- SSEIT (Schutte et al., 2009). The demographic areas controlled in this study include gender, age, ethnicity, education, and tenure.
Multiple regression was conducted on each of the seven hypotheses in this study, and it was determined that transformational leadership style and transactional leadership style were predictors of perception of emotion, managing others' emotions and utilization of emotion. This study also revealed that transformational leadership style was a predictor of managing own emotions. Surprisingly, transactional leadership style was not a predictor of managing own emotions. As expected, there was no significant correlation discovered between passive-avoidant leadership style and emotional intelligence. Furthermore, the results showed that emotional intelligence was a predictor of both transformational and transactional leadership styles. This study discovered that gender was a significant variable, and females scored higher than males in the emotional intelligence component of managing others' emotions.
The findings in this study coincide with the body of literature that exists, which revealed positive relationships between emotional intelligence components and transformational and transactional leadership styles.
About the Author
Dr. Eniola Olagundoye has a Ph.D. in Leadership Studies, from Our Lady of the Lake University, an M.B.A. in Management also from Our Lady of the Lake University, and a B.B.A. in General Business from Texas Southern University. His research areas are technology, emotional intelligence, leadership studies, and business. He has over 20 years' experience in information technology, and He has served and consulted to more than 48 different clients from all over the world. The Author is currently an IT Consultant and an Adjunct Professor at Texas Southern University.