Effects Of Emotional Intelligence On Team Building

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Effects of Emotional Intelligence on Team Building

Emotional Intelligence and its Effect on Team Building

Emotional Intelligence and its Effect on Team Building

Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence (EI) is typically defined as an ability or set of abilities that enable an individual to recognize and manage their own, and others', emotions. Although Peter Salovey and John Mayer (1990) first introduced the concept, Daniel Goleman (1997) brought EI to the public arena with his bestselling book. The concept has gained widespread attention from both practitioners and scientists, mainly due to its proposed relationships to work outcomes and general life achievement. In general, models of EI can be separated into two categories. One perspective is advocated by Mayer and Salovey (1997) who propose that EI is a pure ability similar in nature to intellectual ability. Their model is comprised of four abilities: (a) perceiving emotions, (b) using emotions, (c) understanding emotions, and (d) managing emotions. The levels are progressive, meaning that higher order EI abilities require lower level abilities to build upon. For instance, to be able to manage emotions, individuals must be able to first perceive, facilitate, and understand emotions. The second perspective is often referred to as a “mixed model,” which means that it includes both abilities and emotion relevant traits. Goleman's popular theory of EI is an example, as it includes such notabilities as self-confidence and integrity. Others (Tett, Fox, & Wang, 2005) adopt a trait approach to EI by assessing individual's perceptions of emotional self-efficacy rather than actual ability. This distinction can be useful in determining, as the trait approach captures the motivational or “will do” component, while the ability approach captures talent or “can do” aspects of EI. (Kramer, 1989)

Effects of (EI) on Team Building

Teamwork has always been an important feature of successful organizations, but the use of teams as a business strategy and structure was relatively rare until the 1980s. Now, in the 21st century, work teams have become a common feature in many manufacturing and product development organizations, service organizations, and government agencies. They range from ongoing work teams on the floor of a manufacturing plant, to white collar teams, teams of managers or executives, problem-solving committees, project-based teams, or task forces that exist only for the duration of a given problem. (Lawler, 1990)

People often equate team building with trust building or relationship building, but that is only half of what is needed to develop a group of individuals into a highly functioning team. Teams exist to perform, to accomplish something for the organization. Thus, team building must also include knowledge of business objectives and the development of goals, roles, and procedures needed to get the job done. Team-building efforts must be task-oriented as well as relationship-oriented.

How teams are built will be, to some extent, a function of the type of team being implemented, but all team-building efforts need to include the following characteristics:

Alignment around goals

Clarification of roles

Establishment of policies and procedures

Building effective working relationships

Working with the environment, including support systems

Pros of EI and Team Building

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