Emotional intelligence (EI) is characterized by self-awareness which involves knowing of oneself, being able to put up with your feelings as certain things occur and being able to discriminate between them. It also involves mood management which is the act of being able to handle your feelings so that your reactions are appropriate in relation to a given situation. It also involves self-motivation which entails gathering up oneself and concentrating in the pursuit of a given object of interest in spite of uncertainty in achieving it or impulsiveness. Emotional interest is also characterized by empathy which can be viewed as being ready to listen to others and take their feelings into consideration; one must listen to both verbal and non-verbal communication. It is, therefore, very critical in the field of management and also applicable in health care administration. This is because the above mentioned characteristics are viewed as the most needed of an individual so as to be prolific in a given management docket (Cooper and Sawaf, 1997).
Emotional intelligence can be defined as the proficiencies in interpersonal and intrapersonal skills in such areas as self-motivation, self and social awareness, social skills and self-regulation. Over time, there have been wildly publicized and hotly debated issues regarding how its assessment and application in various fields of management would lead to great success. When an article about emotional intelligence was printed by Harvard Business Review, it registered the highest percentage of readers. The contributions of emotional intelligence to efficient and effective management have been investigated in the field and have found immense backing from the data obtained. It has been considered very vital in the general management and important for employees to get along smoothly in the office. In healthcare administration, leaders have the highest emotional intelligence since they have to make very important decisions regarding human survival due to the importance of the field they operate in. They have to determine how to offer the service to the public very efficiently despite the problems that may be facing them such as high population, poverty, and harsh conditions (Shostrom, 1965).
Several researchers have in the past attempted to link emotional intelligence to business performance of individuals, David McClelland being one of them. David noted that the leaders who had the highest emotional intelligence were the most competent. Those who had lower emotional intelligence were distinctively inferior to their counterparts who had higher emotional intelligence. More recently, the consulting firm Hay/McBer conducted a research on the styles of executive leadership that are obtained from emotional intelligence and how these styles impacted on the way how things are done at the work place. Similar results were obtained, and thus one can state with confidence that emotional intelligence is a factor to competency in leadership (Cooper and Sawaf, 1997).
High emotional intelligence means that one is able to relate well with others, able to understand and listen well, it also shows that the individual has self-discipline and thus can be perceived as a perfectionist. Various assessment tools are currently in use by different organizations to help gauge the emotional intelligence of individuals. Bar-On’s EQ-I is one of them, it generates self-reports composed of 133 items that are made in such a way as to determine the personal qualities with an individual correlated to a greater well-being. This instrument was designed by Dr. Rueven Bar-On after doing research on this field for many years based majorly on work places with several subjects tested (Shostrom, 1965).
Due to the evident importance of emotional intelligence to the running organizations, training programs have been started so as to help develop such qualities. The Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations has come up with a program which is aimed at developing the emotional intelligence of employees in the organization. Through their program Optimal Process for Developing Emotional Intelligence in Organizations, they try to achieve this through some four basic phases. These are preparation, training, transfer and maintenance, and, finally, evaluation. They are able to motivate, encourage participation and link the organization values to its goals (Cooper and Sawaf, 1997).
In conclusion, emotional intelligence is very important in the everyday life of every individual as the current life situation calls for the ability of everyone to be able to manage their emotions effectively. The daily fears of war, disturbed marriages, constant pressure at work and many other conditions make it very necessary to exercise the highest level of emotional intelligence for one to experience a good sense of well-being. Performance is also pegged on the emotional intelligence as shown by the various studies done by psychiatrists and various other researchers, it determines the decision making capacity of individuals and the way how they relate to others.