Emotional intelligence, psychological safety, and team decision making

Wencang Zhou, Zhu Zhu, Donald Vredenburgh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: As teamwork becomes more prevalent in organizational decision-making, the influence of emotional intelligence (EI) on team decision-making process demands more research attention. This study aims to investigate the impact of EI on team psychological safety and decision-making performance. Design/methodology/approach: Team decision-making performance and decision quality from a team decision task were obtained from 54 decision-making teams composed of 241 undergraduate business students from a Mid-Atlantic university. Regression analyses were used to test individual and team’s EI relationship with team decision performance and the mediation effect of psychological safety. Findings: This study provides empirical evidence that individual EI is positively related to individual influence on team decisions. Team-level EI improves team decision-making performance through increases in psychological safety. Research limitations/implications: The sample size is relatively small, and the participants were business students; therefore, the research results may lack generalizability. Future research is encouraged to explore this topic further. Practical implications: As teamwork becomes more prevalent in organizational decision-making, the influence of EI on team decision-making process demands more research and managerial attention. The findings of this paper provide insights on the importance of individual/team EI and psychological safety in team decision performance. Originality/value: This study furthers research showing that emotions are pertinent to social interactions, including group decision-making, and therefore suggests the desirability of investigating other social processes affecting group decision-making.

Original languageEnglish
JournalTeam Performance Management
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 1 Jan 2020

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Keywords

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Psychological safety
  • Team decision-making

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