Emotional Intelligence Research and Real World Application

Emotional Intelligence

The definition of emotional intelligence is, “The ability to perceive, integrate, understand and reflectively manage one’s own feelings and other people’s feelings” (Salovey, Brackett, & Mayer, 2007). The most important element of thinking about our emotions is that intelligence (IQ) does not equal emotional intelligence (EQ). Better yet, the concept that high emotional intelligence (EI) can increase our potential for success in any field. Bradberry (2014) indicated that EI is, “so critical to success that it accounts for 58% of performance in all types of jobs” and, “is the single biggest predictor of performance in the workplace and the strongest driver of leadership and personal excellence” (p. 20). Several studies have been published on how individuals with high emotional intelligence can enhance and increase the potential for positive outcomes (Carmelli, 2003; Deeter-Schmelz & Sojka, 2003; Landy, 2005; Sojka & Deeter-Schmelz, 2002).

Effective EI skill creates positive benefits. Regardless of the chosen field, the understanding and effective application of EI has been proven to be an effective tool in providing positive benefits in the workforce in general (Kidwell, Hardesty, Murtha, & Sheng, 2011; Lam & Kirby, 2002). Five elements of EI are:

  1. self-awareness,

  2. self-management,

  3. self-motivation,

  4. empathy, and

  5. social skills.

Can you see where any one of these areas can be learned or at least improved upon?

As you view the video, you will be asked to take a personal assessment of where you are with your own EI. (You might want to grab the back of a napkin, a notepad, or one of those fancy electronic devices to jot some notes.) Review the slides. Do you answer on the high side or the low side? If your answers are more on the low side, you may benefit from creating an EI Action Plan.

Take your research further. Read ”Why You Need Emotional Intelligence to Succeed” on Forward Thinking.

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Written by Dr. Andree Swanson

Dr. Dr. Swanson is an Assistant Professor with the Forbes School of Business® at Ashford University.


Bradberry, T. (2014, January). Emotional Intelligence – EQ. Forbes.com. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/travisbradberry/2014/01/09/emotional-intelligence/

Carmelli, A. (2003). The relationship between emotional intelligence and work attitudes, behavior and outcomes: An examination among senior managers. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 18(8), 788-813.

Deeter-Schmelz, D. R., & Sojka, J. Z. (2003). Developing effective sales people: Exploring the link between emotional intelligence and sales performance. International Journal of Organizational Analysis, 11(3), 211-220.

Kidwell, B., Hardesty, D. M., Murtha, B. R., & Sheng, S. (2011, January 1). Emotional intelligence in marketing exchanges. Journal of Marketing, 75, 1(78-95).

Lam, L. T., & Kirby, S. L. (2002). Is emotional intelligence an advantage? An exploration of the impact of emotional and general intelligence on individual performance. Journal of Social Psychology, 142 (1), 133-143.

Landy, F. J. (2005). Some historical and scientific issues related to research on emotional intelligence. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 26, 411–424. doi: 10.1002/job.317.

Salovey, P., Brackett, M. & Mayer, J. (2007). Emotional intelligence: Key readings on the Mayer and Salovey model. New York, NY: Dude Publishing.

Sojka, J. Z., & Deeter-Schmel, D. R. (2001). Enhancing the emotional intelligence of salespeople. American Journal of Business, 17(1), 43-50.

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