The emotionally intelligent leader, the dynamics of knowledge-based organizations and the role of emotional intelligence in organizational development

James D. Hess, Arnold C. Bacigalupo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations


Purpose: The leader of the knowledge-based organization is faced with the continuing dilemma of delivering the highest quality and most technologically innovative products or services at the lowest possible cost in a rapidly changing environment. This paper aims to start with the identification of the complexities of managing the knowledge-based organization, using emotional intelligence to balance the interests of the individual and organization, and it may also be redefined as an organizational development process rather than an outcome. Design/methodology/approach: In order to be effective the knowledge-based leader must possess the characteristics most often associated with the description of emotional intelligence and must also be effective at injecting these same characteristics throughout the organization. Utilizing the premises of Stewart's intellectual economy and adapting the work of Buckingham and Coffman to the knowledge-based organization, a series of questions is outlined to assist leaders, managers and workers in the improvement of emotional intelligence awareness and the utilization of emotional intelligence as an organizational development process. Findings: Knowledge-based organizations may benefit from the utilization of behaviors most often attributed to emotional intelligence, and emotional intelligence may be redefined as a process rather than an outcome for organizational development. Originality/value: The knowledge working environment must utilize innovative processes to maintain the engagement and effectiveness of the workforce. Applying emotional intelligence as an organizational development process rather than an outcome, it becomes a strategy for the development of the individual and the organization concurrently rather than treating them as opposing interests.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-229
Number of pages8
JournalOn the Horizon
Issue number3
StatePublished - 17 Sep 2010



  • Emotional intelligence
  • Employees
  • Knowledge management
  • Leadership
  • Organizational development

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