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Assessing for Emotional Intelligence

Competence, technical skills, integrity and determination are traits most people would agree are important for leadership. But what about self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills? Daniel Goleman, author of numerous books and articles on emotional intelligence, including his seminal work Emotional Intelligence (1995), believes these “softer skill” traits, which are associated with emotional intelligence (EI), are equally important for leaders. In fact, some would argue that emotional intelligence, as opposed to cognitive ability, is the key to successful leadership performance.

Analyze the use of assessments of emotional intelligence in evaluating the potential of individuals for senior leadership positions. Then, select three specific assessments of emotional intelligence (do not select the EISA). Review and evaluate each assessment instrument. In a paper of at least 1750 – 2100 words (or 5 -7 pages) in length (excluding title, abstract, and reference pages), address the following:

  1. Discuss the concept of EI and its evolution as a factor associated with leadership performance. How do researchers classify EI—as a distinct component of intelligence or as a set of personality or behavioral characteristics? Why is this classification important when considering the use of assessments of EI for senior leadership?
  2. Debate the idea that EI is as critical, or perhaps more critical, than cognitive ability in determining leadership success. Compare and contrast views of researchers on this issue.
  3. For each of the three different assessments of emotional intelligence you have selected, describe the theoretical framework upon which each assessment is based, the typical uses for each assessment, and the target population(s) for each assessment.
  4. Discuss each instrument’s reliability and validity, as well as administration considerations and costs to either the user or to the organization administering the assessment.
  5. Analyze the advantages and disadvantages of using each assessment for its intended purpose. Under what circumstances would you recommend its use? When would you NOT recommend its use and why?

Support your analysis and discussion with at least three journal articles, in addition to references to required course readings (textbook and articles), and any Internet sites you reference to gather information about the assessments you have chosen.


References (Please include at least 2 references below with journal ariticles.)


Scott, J. C. & Reynolds, D. H. (Eds.). (2010). Handbook of workplace assessment. Retrieved from
Chapter 17: Assessment for Organizational Change: Mergers, Restructuring, and Downsizing (Scott, J. C. & Pearlman, K.)

Goleman, D. [Talks at Google]. (2007, November 12). Daniel Goleman: “Social Intelligence” | Talks at Google. [Video file]. Retrieved from  This YouTube video features Daniel Goleman speaking on aspects of social and emotional intelligence. *Closed-captioning available.

Groves, K. S., McEnrue, M. P., & Shen, W. (2008). Developing and measuring the emotional intelligence of leaders. The Journal of Management Development, 27(2),225-250.

Joseph, D. L. & Newman, D. A. (2010). Emotional intelligence: An integrative meta-analysis and cascading model. Journal of Applied Psychology, 95 (1), 54-78.

Kram, K., Ting, S. & Bunker, K. (2002). On-the-job training for emotional competence. Leadership in Action, 22(3), 3-7.

Silzer, R. F. & Church, A. H. (2009). The pearls and perils of identifying potential. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice, 2(4), 377-412. Retrieved from (Links to an external site.)

Wells, S. J. (2003). Who’s next? Creating a formal program for developing new leaders can pay huge dividends, but many firms aren’t reaping those rewards. HR Magazine, 48(11), 44-50.

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