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Title: A study of emotional intelligence, leader member dyads and employee outcomes in the British National Health Service
Author: Hesselgreaves, Hannah
ISNI:       0000 0001 3555 3658
Awarding Body: University of Strathclyde
Current Institution: University of Strathclyde
Date of Award: 2007
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This study aimed to develop a model that explained the relationships between emotional intelligence (as a model of individual differences), the quality of hierarchical relationships (utilising leader-member exchange theory), and a selection of employee outcomes, of which stress was of particular interest. This model was tested using a sample of hospital staff within one national health board in Scotland. A cross sectional survey design was chosen. The sample consisted of 122 dyads from five hospitals. Each study variable was measured using previously validated measures. The key independent variables were emotional intelligence, measured using the ECI-2 (Boyatzis, Goleman, & Rhee, 1999) and leader-member exchange, using the LMX-7 (Graen & Uhl-Bien, 1995). Both were rated by supervisors and employees. The main dependent variables were stress, performance, organisational commitment, and job satisfaction. LMX was also tested for its hypothesised mediating effects on the relationship between emotional intelligence and stress, as was social support. Perceived organisational support, relationship tenure, and liking were control variables, to isolate the effects the key independent variables. Dyadic responses were matched and paired to analyse unique leader-member exchanges. Data were analysed using stepwise regresson analysis, and for the tests of mediation, 6 hierarchical regression analysis was employed. There were several main findings. Emotional intelligence (EI) was found to positively relate to the quality of leader-member exchange, suggesting that emotional intelligence may inform the development and management of hierarchical relationships. Emotional intelligence did not have a direct relationship with stress. EI also predicted performance, but not job satisfaction or organisational commitment. Percieved organisational support explained more variance in these outcomes that emotional intelligence of leader-member exchange quality. Leader-member exchange did influence the way in which stress was experienced, particularly the frequency with which employees felt job pressure. This relationship was non-linear. However, stress severity had a negative linear relationship with LMX, describing that LMX was related to lower stress intensity. LMX was positively related to performance. Finally, a hypothesised interaction between EI and LMX was not supported, suggesting that individual differences did not moderate the extent to which LMX impacted stress outcomes. It is considered that an interaction effect was not found because of the limited range in ratings of emotional intelligence and leader-member exchange. This study responds to an identified gap in the organisational behaviour literature, contributing to the exploration of how leader-member relationships are influenced by notions of individual differences such as emotional intelligence, and how outcomes at individual and organisational levels can be affected, particularly in large public sector organisations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral