Date of Award

12-2015

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Executive Leadership

First Supervisor

C. Michael Robinson

Second Supervisor

Julie White

Abstract

The health care industry is moving from a volume-based, fee-for-service financial reimbursement system to a value-based purchasing model. These changes have caused substantial challenges in the delivery of care. Hospital leaders must conduct business differently to lower cost, improve safety outcomes, and be more efficient and effective. Numerous studies show engaged employees improve operational performance. Past studies point to leaders with high emotional intelligence who are effective at engaging employees. The purpose of this study was to determine if there is a statistically significant correlation between frontline managers and supervisors’ emotional intelligence and the degree of engagement of their direct reports. The research questions were: (a) what is the level of employee engagement among those who participated in the study, (b) what is the level of emotional intelligence of the frontline managers and supervisors who participated in the study, and (c) using inferential statistics, is there a statistically significant correlation between emotional intelligence of frontline managers and supervisors and the employee engagement of their direct reports. The study used non-experimental, quantitative analytics to test the hypothesis. A bivariate correlation procedure called Pearson’s Product-Moment Correlation was used to determine the potential relationship between the emotional intelligence of 24 frontline managers and supervisors and employee engagement of their direct reports, totaling 585 employees. Though a favorable, moderate correlation was found with a Pearson r of 0.39267 at a p value of 0.0577, the hypothesis was denied. The favorable correlated relationship found supports the growing scholarly work. Future studies may provide greater understanding and value of the relationship between emotional intelligence and employee engagement. Additional recommendations were made to improve organizational performance through leadership development, recruitment, culture engineering, and ongoing assessment of managerial effectiveness.

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