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  • The science, art, and profession of public administration are based on systematic rational thinking. Such thinking draws substance from solid facts, reliable data, and proven pathways for improvements.
  • In the third millennium, who would doubt this argument and mix feelings and emotions with clear-cut facts and proven evidence based on logic and rationality?
  • To be fair, we would not doubt it ourselves. For public administration, as a science and as the art of running modern states and governments, we would hope and expect that strong logic, a high degree of rationality, and bright minds would guide policies and decisions.
  • Whereas some may argue that in practice, many public administration decisions in the United States and in other parts of the world are far from being based on science, a thorough review of the origins of public administration and its relationship with organizational studies has recently emphasized the strong rational basis of our field and its solid roots in scientific thinking. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • In line with this assessment, emotions; feelings, and the impact of the heart are expected to remain in the background. Isn’t this what bureaucracy is all about? Impersonality, formality, clear-cut borders of legitimacy, systematic order, rational thinking, and the rule of law. So what do feelings and emotions have to do with all this?

·   1930s — Edward Thorndike describes the concept of “social intelligence” as the ability to get along with other people.

· 1940s — David Wechsler suggests that affective components of intelligence may be essential to success in life.

· 1950s — Humanistic psychologists such as Abraham Maslow describe how people can build emotional strength.

§   1975 – Howard Gardner publishes The Shattered Mind, which introduces the concept of multiple intelligences.

· 1985 – Wayne Payne introduces the term emotional intelligence in his doctoral dissertation entitled “A study of emotion: developing emotional intelligence; self-integration; relating to fear, pain and desire (theory, structure of reality, problem-solving, contraction/expansion, tuning in/coming out/letting go).”

·1987 — In an article published in Mensa Magazine, Keith. Beasley uses the term “emotional quotient.” It has been suggested that this is the first published use of the term, although Reuven Bar-On claims to have used the term in an unpublished version of his graduate thesis.

·1990   Psychologists Peter Salovey and John
Mayer publish their landmark article, “Emotional Intelligence,” in the journal Imagination, Cognition, and Personality.

1995 – The concept of emotional intelligence is popularized after publication of psychologist and New York Times science writer Daniel Goleman’s book Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ.

  • This is not a simple question. Perhaps its strong bureaucratic nature has prevented public administration from being clear about its position toward emotions and feelings.
  • Despite strong rationality and calls for planned change and systematic order in public administration, much of the activity in this domain remains random, experience based, intuitive, improvised, or spontaneous.
  • Moreover, whereas performance-oriented management is the bon ton in the current state of the discipline. We are still unclear as to the potential impact of emotions on work outcomes and on performance in public organizations. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • Should we rely, therefore, solely on rational thinking in making good public choices? Or do feelings and emotions have anything positive to offer beyond the conventional thinking of formality, order, and firm bureaucracy? We can base our argument on the idea that in spite of extensive calls for rational thinking in public administration, the public interest is strongly affected by the feelings and emotions of public administration personnel rather than by reliable data and facts, even when these latter assets are available and accessible.
  • Thus, we can argue, non-rational, emotional factors are highly influential in the process of public activity and in producing outcomes and performance in public agencies.


  • The study of emotional intelligence evolved from works by such theorists as Gardner (1983) and Williams and Sternberg (1988), who proposed broader approaches to understanding intelligence. Salovey and Mayer (1990) coined the term “emotional intelligence” and included Gardner’s intrapersonal and interpersonal components in the construct.
  • Goleman (1998) popularized emotional intelligence in the business realm by describing its importance as an ingredient for successful business careers and as a crucial component for effective group performance.
  • These theorists and many others defined and explained the concept of emotional intelligence. The four most popular ones can be included here. Emotional intelligence (EQ) can be defined as:
  • “The ability to monitor one’s own and others’ feelings and emotions, to discriminate among them, and to use the information to guide one’s thinking and action” (Mayer & Salovey, 1993).
  • “The intelligent use of emotions: you intentionally make your emotions work for you by using them to help guide your behaviour and thinking in ways that enhance your results” (Weisinger, 1998).
  • “The ability to recognize and respond to the emotions and feelings of others, as well as the skill to help others manage their emotions” (Schmidt, 1997).
  • “The ability to: 1) be aware of, to understand, and to express oneself; 2) be aware of, to understand, and to relate to others; 3) deal with strong emotions and control one’s impulses; and 4) adapt to change and to solve problems of a personal or a social nature (Reuven Bar-On, 1988).

Although many definitions exist, the basic ideas are the same. Emotionally intelligent people are aware of their emotions and the emotions of others. They use that information to guide their thinking and actions.


  • Salovey and Mayer proposed a model that identified four different factors of emotional intelligence: the perception of emotion, the ability reason using emotions, the ability to understand emotion and the ability to manage emotions.
  • Perceiving Emotions: The first step in understanding emotions is to accurately perceive them. In many cases, this might involve understanding nonverbal signals such as body language and facial expressions.
  • Reasoning with Emotions: The next step involves using emotions to promote thinking and cognitive activity. Emotions help prioritize what we pay attention and react to; we respond emotionally to things that garner our attention.
  • Understanding Emotions: The emotions that we perceive can carry a wide variety of meanings. If someone is expressing angry emotions, the observer must interpret the cause of their anger and what it might mean. For example, if your boss is acting angry, it might mean that he is dissatisfied with your work; or it could be because he got a speeding ticket on his way to work that morning or that he’s been fighting with his wife.
  • Managing Emotions: The ability to manage emotions effectively is a key part of emotional intelligence. Regulating emotions, responding appropriately and responding to the emotions of others are all important aspect of emotional management.
  • According to Salovey and Mayer, the four branches of their model are, “arranged from more basic psychological processes to higher, more psychologically integrated processes.
  • For example, the lowest level branch concerns the (relatively) simple abilities of perceiving and expressing emotion. In contrast, the highest level branch concerns the conscious, reflective regulation of emotion” (1997).


  • A consensus exists that emotional intelligence concerns the ability to carry out accurate reasoning about emotions and the ability to use feelings, emotions, and emotional knowledge to enhance thought.
  • El represents abilities that combine intellectual intelligence and emotion to enhance thought. It encompasses specific skills, such as the ability to accurately identify one’s feelings and emotions, and indicates that these individual skills may also be viewed as forming an integrated, global El.
  • Theoretical approaches to El, in fact, can be divided according to whether they focus on specific abilities or on a more global integration of those capacities. The specific ability approaches concern individual mental capacities` that are important to El. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • The integrative model approaches regard El as a cohesive, global ability. Specific ability approaches to El study issues such as how well a person identifies emotions in faces or how well a person understands emotional meanings.
  • Integrative-model approaches to El focus on the study of specific abilities combined together. In recent years, scholars have also introduced a third approach to El, called a mixed model.
  • This approach includes a variety of non-El qualities and, consequently, appears to fall partly or largely outside the boundaries of the concept.
  • The mixed model typically studies some relevant, emotion specific abilities, but also includes motives, social styles, self-related qualities (skills and talents that individuals may have), and other traits that do not focus primarily on emotion or emotional reasoning. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE

Thus, models of emotional intelligence begin with emotional intelligence—related qualities such as the ability to perceive emotions accurately, and add –

  • motives such as the need for achievement,
  • social styles such as gregariousness and assertiveness,
  • self related qualities such as self-esteem, and
  • control-related qualities such as flexibility and impulse control.
  • The integration of these additions creates the mixed models for El.
  • All the foregoing models for the study of El are relevant and should be considered in a study of the public sector where a few approaches can be used to initiate a useful discourse on the topic.
  • As far as we could find, most of the studies that adopted one of these approaches suggest that El is correlated with more positive work outcomes, improve a performance and success at work.
  • According to above figure, El is closely related to two other scientific concepts: intelligence and emotion. Intelligence and emotion have consensual meanings for most psychologists.
  • For example, intelligence involves the ability to understand information, whereas emotion is a coordinated response to the environment. El is the ability to reason about emotions, as well as the capacity to use feelings, emotions and emotional information to assist reasoning. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE


There are five components to emotional intelligence: self-awareness, self- regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills.

  • The first component of emotional intelligence — self-awareness — means, “having a deep understanding of one’s emotions, strengths, weaknesses, needs, and drives”. People who have a high level of self-awareness are very honest with themselves and others.
  • They avoid the extremes of being overly critical and unrealistically hopeful. Furthermore, these people know how their feelings affect them, others, and their job performance.
  • The second component of emotional intelligence is self-regulation. This is an ongoing conversation people have with themselves, which frees them from being prisoners of their feelings. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • People with a high degree of self-regulation are more capable of facing the ambiguities of an advancing industry than those whose degree of self-regulation is low.
  • Furthermore, people with a high level of self-regulation can help to enhance the integrity of an organization by not making bad decisions through impulse behaviours. Self-regulation will help individuals stay in control of their feelings and make thoughtful decisions.
  • The third component of emotional intelligence is motivation. Motivated individuals want to achieve beyond their and everyone else’s expectations.
  • Motivation extends to the deep inner desire to achieve for the sake of achievement. Some of the signs that an employer will see in a motivated employee are: passion for his or her work, quest for challenges, desire to learn, and pride in completing a job well.
  • Motivation makes people restless; therefore, they continuously explore new horizons to find better ways of doing their jobs. Highly motivated people constantly raise their performance expectations for themselves, their team, and their organization.
  • One of their greatest qualities, however, is remaining optimistic even though they have experienced failure or a setback. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • This is a valuable benefit to an organization, because it means that a motivated person is committed to seeing the company succeed in its goals and objectives.
  • The fourth component of emotional intelligence is empathy. When an individual shows empathy, he or she is aware and considerate of other employees’ feelings.
  • The empathetic person combines employees’ feelings and other factors in order to make decisions. There are three reasons why empathy is important to leadership in today’s business world: “the increasing use of teams, the rapid pace of globalization, and the growing need to retain talent”.
  • When using teams, empathetic individuals can be astounding leaders because of their abilities to recognize and understand other opinions. Empathetic leaders play a key role when globalization is a factor, because they can understand the importance of others’ cultural differences.
  • Empathetic individuals are also effective in retaining talent because they are able to develop personal rapport with new employees or proteges during coaching and mentoring stages. Through these growing relationships, an empathetic leader can provide them with effective feedback, which is essential in retaining employees.
  • The fifth component of emotional intelligence is social skills.
  • Individuals use their friendliness in order to have people do what they want. Social leaders are able to build a rapport easily by finding some type of common ground with everyone, thus establishing a broad circle of acquaintances. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • In addition, the social individual is an effective persuader and is able to manage teams effectively.
  • As described above, the emotionally intelligent leader has many wonderful attributes. He or she is an empathetic person and a great motivator.
  • In addition, an emotionally intelligent leader understands his or her weaknesses and is able to control his or her emotions.
  • Emotionally intelligent leaders can utilize these traits differently, thereby forming different leadership styles. These leadership styles can affect the climate of the organization, both positively and negatively.


  • The link between EQ strengths in a leader and the organization’s climate is important for EQ theory. The following table identifies how six distinct styles of EQ-based leadership affect climate.
  • Four styles — the visionary (sometimes called the “authoritative), the affiliative, the democratic, and the coaching — generally drive climate in a positive direction.
  • Two styles — the coercive and the pacesetting — tend to drive climate downward, particularly when leaders overuse them (though each of these two can have positive impact if applied in appropriate situations).
  • Visionary leaders are empathic, self-confident, and often act as change agents.
  • Affiliative leaders, too, are empathic, with strengths in building relationships and managing conflict. The democratic leader encourages collaboration and teamwork and communicates effectively — particularly as an excellent listener. The coaching leader is emotionally self-aware, empathic, and skilled at identifying and building on the potential of others.
  • The coercive leader relies on the power of his position and orders people to execute his wishes. This type leader is typically handicapped by a lack of empathy.
  • The pacesetting leader sets high standards and exemplifies them. He or she exhibits initiative and a very high drive to achieve, but is often micromanaging or criticizing those who fail to meet his or her own high standards rather than helping them to improve.

Most effective leaders integrate four or more of the six styles regularly. They switch to the one most appropriate in a given leadership situation. For instance, the study of school leaders .found that, in those schools where the heads displayed four or more leadership styles, students had superior academic performance relative to students in comparison schools. In schools where the heads displayed just one of two styles, academic performance was poorest. Often the styles here were the pacesetting or coercive ones, which tended to undermine teacher morale and enthusiasm.

In order to increase the level of employees’ performance, morale, and enthusiasm., many organizations today want to promote an emotionally intelligent culture. To succeed in that, organizations must foster the following attributes:

  • The organization “promotes a culture in which openness and transparency are the norm”.
  • Respectful assertiveness must exist in the organization.
  • The organization encourages diversity.
  • The organization tolerates constructive disagreement.
  • The organization values flexibility and communication among its various departments.
  • By having these attributes, an emotionally intelligent organization can plan several years in advance, and its employees can work with each other more effectively.
  • In addition to having these characteristics, an emotionally intelligent organization should understand and possess the “3 R’s”.
  • That is, the “capacity to recruit, retain and rouse its workforce”. Being able to retain its workforce is an advantage to an organization because of the expense of hiring and training new employees. In addition, high turnover can result in low employee morale.
  • Therefore, it is best if a company has an ability to retain its current workforce. Rousing its workforce is also an important attribute of emotionally intelligent organizations.
  • Motivated employees will work harder for the company and will likely be the most satisfied. To rouse their employees, companies should include them in the decision making process and recognize their contributions.
  • It is necessary to have all three attributes present in the company in order for it to
    develop emotional intelligence. However, there are two even more important factors that influence the level of emotional intelligence of the company. The first one is the Administrator / CEO’s emotional intelligence.

The characteristics of leaders possessing a high level of emotional intelligence are as follows:

  • They set goals that are clear and mutually agreed upon.
  • They prefer praise as a tool for training and inspiring employees.
  • They rely on decentralization for achieving their goals.
  • They focus on employees and their feelings.
  • They are role models.
  • As discussed previously, these leaders exhibit a high degree of self-actualization, self-regard, and a strong sense of self- awareness. They admit their mistakes and seek to learn from them.
  • The second factor that affects the organization’s ability to foster an emotionally intelligent culture is organizational structure.
  • This structure must include “the organizational chart, role descriptions, lines of accountability and authority, and formal channels of communication up and down the organizational chart”. Companies with this organizational structure in place are increasingly flexible and allow for bottom-up decision making.


  • The science of public administration and the art of public policy draw their information from people’s behaviour and decisions in order to integrate the mind and the heart.
  • Whereas the mind and the heart may frequently conflict in aspirations, ambitions, analysis, and interpretations, both exist in the daily actions of government and governmental agencies at any level—federal, state, or local.
  • Similarly, scholarly attention should focus on exploring new ways to integrate knowledge derived from the heart (e.g., feelings, emotions, affections), beyond the old and conservative reliance on the mind (e.g., logic, rationality, facts).
  • The wisdom of the heart has the advantage of bringing a new type of knowledge and talent that, as we suggested earlier, has been conceptualized in recent writings about management as emotional intelligence.
  • However, with one exception its entire meaning for and impact on public administration, public policy, public sector organizations, and public personnel has been largely neglected by research.
  • This omission is especially surprising in view of NPM ideas that strongly affect the current discourse in public administration.
  • According to NPM-rooted managerialism, public organizations are increasingly expected to “soften” the traditional bureaucratic approach to citizens and to be more sensitive to the feelings of the general public and of many other stakeholders at the local, regional, and national levels.
  • Responsiveness to citizens as clients, an iconic terminology of NPM advocates, must carry with it sensitivity and sympathy to public needs and demands. In many ways, for public agencies and public servants to soften their approach implies being highly aware of feelings and emotions in the environment.
  • This notion is important whether perceived from the vantage point of the public officer or from that of citizens as customers or clients.
  • Dealing with public sector organizations, public personnel, public officials, citizens, and even with politicians involves a complex set of feelings, emotions, intelligence, and other abilities that challenge the conservative “rational-type” mechanisms of governance.
  • Adopting the idea and model of El, as proposed by Mayer, Roberts, and Barsade (2008), and improving it to meet the needs of the specific domain of modern public administration can foster a more constructive discussion about the role of feelings and emotions in the daily actions of serving people through a variety of government agencies. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
  • Thus, based on the original model of Mayer, Roberts, and Barsade (2008), it can be suggested a revised version of El that is more applicable in this sector.
  • El in public administration relies on a systematic understanding of emotions and feelings, on one hand, and rational intelligence or reasoning, on the other.
  • It consists of the specific abilities of various stakeholders to understand feelings and emotions in their immediate work environment, but also integrates other abilities that can produce individuals with stronger emotional intelligence.
  • When these individuals become active in the process of producing or consuming public goods, their emotional skills and resources become very valuable and influential and may affect the outcomes of public organizations.
  • Similarly, emotional public administration consists of the emotions of stakeholders in public administration that reflect responses to changes in the environment and involve specific experiences, cognitions, bodily states, and appraisals of the ongoing situation.
  • Intelligent public administration, on the other hand, reflects the ability to understand and solve problems based on reasoning about abstract relationships of power and influence in organizations (politics), logical and organized actions (bureaucratic order and managerial knowledge), the systematic learning of targeted materials (policy making), and responsiveness to stakeholders’ needs.
  • Therefore, emotionally intelligent public administration has the ability to understand and to problem-solve situations that are meaningful for vast populations of citizens and for policy issues under the control, management, or supervision of governments. These abilities involve several aspects, such as –
  • managing the emotional responses of stakeholders in the public sphere;
  • understanding emotions and the emotional meanings of others (citizens, clients, employees, etc.);
  • appraising emotions in various situations;
  • using emotion in reason-based decisions and policy making, and;
  • identifying emotions in faces, voices, postures, and other human forms of expression during public management activities. Ethics- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE



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