Leaders' Emotional Intelligence and Subordinate Job Response: Application Within the Information Technology Industry

Leaders' Emotional Intelligence and Subordinate Job Response: Application Within the Information Technology Industry

Author: 
Lucia Caron
Program of study: 
D.M./IST
Abstract: 
The purpose of this quantitative correlational study was to assess emotional intelligence levels among technology leaders and determine if a relationship exists between high emotional intelligence of technology leaders and satisfaction levels and turnover intentions for their technical support subordinates. A purposive, non-probability sampling method was used for this study. The study was completed using a population sample of 18 intact teams. Technology leader participants were solicited from HDI, a professional association and certification body for the technical service and support industry and those leaders’ direct reports. The Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT) measurement instrument was used to measure the EI level of technology leaders and the Michigan Organizational Assessment Questionnaire (MOAQ) General Attitudes module was administered to their direct subordinates to measure employee satisfaction and turnover intentions. This study was conducted within the context of existing frameworks including emotional intelligence and performance of IT leaders. Pearson correlation analysis was used to determine the correlation between the variables of interest. The primary objective of this study was to determine if technical support professionals are more satisfied when their leader has higher levels of emotional intelligence. The study results revealed that there is no statistically significant correlation between IT leaders’ emotional intelligence and their direct subordinates’ job satisfaction or turnover intentions.
Dedication: 
This dissertation is dedicated to my dad, who offered his loving support throughout this journey when he was here, and gave me gentle nudges even after he passed away. I miss you immensely, dad. This dissertation is also dedicated to my mom who never stopped asking how my Doctoral work was going, and my siblings Christina and Mike. I also dedicate this dissertation to my two children, Tyler and Jordan, who pushed and supported me most of all during this long journey. They never complained that I was locked up in my office often, or writing yet another paper. They listened when I wanted to talk something through even when they did not understand or the topic bored them to tears. They sent me off to do my homework, and offered advice whenever they could. They are my heart and soul and I will forever be grateful.
Acknowledgements: 
This journey has been a long but rewarding one, full of unanticipated stops, challenges and lessons. I would like to especially thank my committee members. Dr. Timothy Clifton helped me get started long ago and continuously challenged me until he could no longer serve on my committee. He sent me back to the drawing board many times, but it was well worth the effort and I learned a lot from his process. Dr. Gene Brady who ever so graciously agreed to step in as my Chair late in my journey but kept me on track and heading in the right direction so I did not miss a beat. I deeply appreciate his guidance. Dr. Mary Lind kept me on my toes, and ensured I had a deep understanding of the relevant statistics for my work. Her questions ultimately ensured my work was sound and my confidence was high. Dr. James Rice was instrumental in my success. He graciously joined my committee late in the process and jumped in with both feet to help me reach the finish line. He was extremely responsive, checked in on me, nudged me along and talked me off a ledge on a few occasions. I will be forever grateful for his input and for the assistance and guidance of my entire committee.